Sunday, June 12, 2011

Big Finish Day

I went to 'Big Finish Day' on Saturday in Barking & had a thoroughly enjoyable time.

A fine turn out of Big Finish folks ranging across the whole 'family' of those involved, from Jason Haigh-Ellery & Nick Briggs downwards/upwards/acrosswards.

I got to spend some money - to much for my bank balance & probably not enough from Big Finish's point of view - & get some bits & bobs signed. It was nice to be reminded that a lot of the people involved in Big Finish (& Doctor Who itself) are actually quite nice & friendly.

Colin Baker was on fine form & helped Lisa Jackson (aka Flip Big Finish's new 6th Doctor Companion) settle in. It must be somethin of a culture shock for an actor to be confronted with the realisation of what even a small scale Doctor Who event is like.

I bought Nev Fountain's "Geek Tragedy". The first of the Mervyn Stone Mysteries, which is a comedy muder-mystery set in & around the world of a science-fiction convention. I've just finished it this evening & enjoyed it - even if I occassionally wince with pained recollection at the description of fandom. I shall be buying the two subsequent books as & when I have some cash.

I'd also recommend 'Love Songs For The Shy & Cynical', which is Rob Shearman's second volume of short stories. They're often quite dark but well-written, thoughtful & make you thinkable. Rob Shearman is a friendly chap & like a few others I'm now geekily proud to have a little Dalek sketch autograph from him.

It did dawn on me that as geeks go I'm shockingly disorganised. I was surrounded by people with their CD & DVD covers pre-removed, labelled & ready for signing. All impressively prepared. I suspect these are people who go to more conventions/events than me. I don't mock this. Worryingly I'd have done something similar if I'd thought of it.

They also seemed to feel less guilty than me about flitting from room to room like an autograph collecting butterfly. I know that's one of the purposes of these events but I always feel mildly guilty just asking for an autograph & having nothing to say. At least I did get to tell Marc Platt how much I liked Ghostlight.

Andrew Smith was another nice chap to talk to & didn't seem to mind me waffling on a bit; Miles Richardson - owner of a fine moustache for the purposes of a part - was not impressed with facial hair in general; Sophie Aldred bought out late-teenage geek flashbacks in me; Beth Chalmers ws very patient as I ineptly fished out CD covers for her to sign; Gary Russell convinced me that 'Blue Box Boy' by Matthew Waterhouse might be more than just a long sulk & Colin Baker is convinced Wycombe Wanderers will stay up next season.

There's not much more to add really. I did speak to Luke aka the Two Minute Doctor Who Podcast*(both on & off microphone) who seems a friendly chap & we talked about the profusion of Doctor Who podcasts. He has recommeded the Ood Cast, which I've been umming and ahhing about listening to recently as it seems to be much recommended. I shall give it a spin.

A good day & if Big Finish do another I shall probably come along. This time with all my CDs & DVD covers ready prepared & my old Sophie Aldred signed photo, which has faded over time, so I can get her to re-sign it.

After a long time being a solo geek my Doctor Who fandom is starting to become a social thing again, which is nice. I've missed being able to have discussions with people about my theories on The Master (he's rubbish, it's a game with the Doctor etc), why I love certain stories & other conversations that no one but the 'we' wish to have & that - as much as the hob-nobbing with the great & the good - was a nice part of the day.


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