DogCon is the annual gathering of writers, readers and fans of Raw Dog Screaming Press. This year’s DogCon5, held in the new RDSP-owned beach house — the Broadkill Writer’s Resort — focused on writers who wanted to relax, learn, practice, and mingle together in a kind of bizarro sci-fi literary retreat. While the programming was professional, it was relaxed, and the whole experience had the vibe of a 48-hour con suite at a genre convention, with occasional excursions to the beach and many spontaneous acts of chatting, gaming and writing.
At the event, I ran a “Live Instigation” activity, which involved walking through ways of unfolding a subject to “milk the madness” out of it. The results were amazing. You can see both the presentation slides and the live video capture over on the Mastication Publications blog.
I also sponsored a Fridge of the Damned poetry contest. Janice Leach (dailynightmare.com) won it with her magnetic poem, “Memory Box” and took home a HUGE poetry and audiobook bundle as the grand prize. You can see all the entries at the top of the album at https://flic.kr/s/aHsjDpPaRv
The headline act was Beverly Bambury, who ran two rock solid publicity-oriented workshops, and other events included a “story swap” reading of a partner’s fiction, the RDSP Reader’s Award (winner: Matt Betts, for Indelible Ink), online interviews with some of the writers who couldn’t attend, new book releases from Cina Pelayo and Laurel Myler, and the always-intriguing “State of the Dog” speech. Joseph Bouthiette Jr., the publisher of Carrion Blue 555, also was in attendance, sharing an early release of the exciting new 555 flash fiction anthology, along with other titles. All the writers had new work to share and talk about, but the focus was really on hanging out, thinking about the “next step” in our careers, and conjuring good spirits between us. Raw Doggers are genuinely good people.
The beach house, Broadkill Writer’s Resort, is a pretty amazing place, and certainly worth looking into if you’re ever seeking a place on the eastern seaboard to get away from it all and write. The publishers, John Edward Lawson and Jennifer Barnes, did an outstanding job organizing and hosting the entire weekend, and everyone departed with smiles, renewed by the experience, and eager to continue following this unique publisher as they pursue some exciting plans for the future. In a nutshell: RDSP plans to increase its investment in the community it has built, and DogCon is but one of many such communal gatherings to come! Keep your eyes on their events page to see if any of their authors are reading in your neck of the proverbial woods.
Here’s a collection of photos I took across the weekend that speak for themselves. Attendees you might spot in the images include: John Edward Lawson & Jennifer Barnes, Beverly Bambury, Stephanie Wytovich, Jason Jack Miller & Heidi Ruby Miller, William Hamilton, K. Ceres Wright, JL Gribble, Kaylee Stebbins, Joseph Bouthiette Jr., Blake & Laura Burkhead, Nathan Rosen, Jessica McHugh, James & Janice Leach, Daniel Haeusser and others.