This weekend was huge in the world of speculative fiction, what with WorldCon and the Hugo Awards in Dublin. More importantly for me, however, was the amazing opportunity I had to meet my FIYAH teammates in the flesh and celebrate our first-ever Hugo nomination.
Spoiler alert: we didn't win. But the Best Semiprozine category was so stacked with friends and colleagues we love and respect, it was almost impossible to be disappointed. We're still a relatively young outfit, though. Stamina and the grace of our supporters permitting, we'll be back on future ballots and inevitably on the Hugo stage.
BUT THAT MEETUP THOUGH. I'm not sure how to properly convey the magic that is getting to meet your family for the first time. Relationships typically work the other way. We meet each other first, build rapports, pool our skills, our talents to then make something powerful through the Voltron-esque arrangement of our collective energy. Here, though, we've given life to something immense and celebrated and beloved FIRST. It's like we became such fans of one another through our work together, that it was easy to view our collaboration as surreal. How did I end up in the company of such driven, impassioned people? How did so many of us manage to mine the empty seconds of our days for the last 3-ish years and connect them in a way that keeps this project growing? This time and effort isn't snatched out of the air. It belongs to people. And that's something you only know in your periphery, really, until you meet the people giving it.
So the weekend was spent with the team in Atlanta. It involved shared meals, book shopping, planning for the future, and so much laughter. Saturday was team-only and we relished the time we had to just talk to each other. Sunday, we linked up with our local (and some not so local) supporters after/concurrent with the Hugo ceremony. These were also people we'd only engaged with in a digital space for years, and getting to meet them in real time to talk about the work and receive the love borne from it? That was a privilege. These people were our community and having them tell us we were doing them proud was the Hugo award for me.
(We're still coming for that rocket, though, baby.)
Anyway, flick if you will through some of the pictures from the event. And my eternal gratitude to everyone who showed up or donated to make this happen.