See Howard in Reno in 2011: WorldCon 69

If you've ever considered attending the World Science Fiction Convention, WorldCon 69 in Reno, Nevada is the show for you.

Why? Because the entire Writing Excuses crew is going to be there, a huge contingent of my friends and peers in the Utah community of science-fiction and fantasy creators will be in attendance, and Reno promises to be the most cost-effective WorldCon for a decade in any direction. Why? Because Reno is a gambling town, and the price of your room and your meals will be in large measure offset by gamblin' fools. What would set you back $200 to $300 per day in most cities will cost you between $50 and $100 in Reno.

And right now Renovation 2011 memberships are about to go up in price from $160 to $180. Thursday, September 30th is the last day you can pay the old rate.

Why pre-register? Among other things, starting in January your membership will allow you to nominate things for the 2011 Hugo Awards. You'll also be able to vote on the Hugos themselves during the summer of 2011. It'll also let you tell your friends, family, and boss that you have firm plans between August 17th and 21st of next year, which is a critical step in being able to actually take the time off.

Is WorldCon worth it? If you've ever wanted to meet the folks who create your favorite science fiction and fantasy, and meet them in an environment when they'll actually sit and talk with you in a bar, over lunch, during a panel, or at a kaffeeklatsch, this is the place with the highest concentration of those folks anywhere in the world. You might like star-spotting at ComicCon or Dragon*Con, but those stars usually won't deign to stop and talk. Authors LOVE to talk to people, and tend to have exceedingly interesting things to say.

Is WorldCon worth it? You'll get to meet me and Sandra, and score awesome deals on merchandise. We can't quite save you the cost of membership, but we can make a dent in it. You'll get to meet dozens of other Schlock fans, and argue nuances of plot and characterization. You'll probably get to see Brandon, Dan, and Howard record a few episodes of Writing Excuses in front of a live audience, likely with special guests drawn from the notable attendees.

Is WorldCon worth it? Read the comments below. I'm sure somebody from Melbourne, Montreal, Denver, or Los Angeles (the events I've personally attended during the last five years) will say something helpful.