§ Tom Spurgeon interviews Charles Brownstein about the Gordon Lee win and other matters.
Shortly after the calendar passed they contacted Paul Cadle and said they’d be willing to drop the case if Gordon wrote a letter of apology. Gordon was willing to do that from the start, and frankly, we’ve been saying all along that this case should have been solved with an apology and not a prosecution, so we didn’t object. Gordon submitted his apology letter and we waited for Patterson to drop the case. Weeks went by without response and it was making everyone a bit edgy. So, last week the Begners sent a letter to Patterson requesting that she honor her end of this agreement, and dismiss the case before we had to go to court to seek relief. On Friday she had a conversation with Alan Begner and finally did authorize the charges to be dismissed.
Back in the 1980s I used to take pride in the fact that I wasnâ€™t officially sent to the San Diego Con by an employer, since this meant I was free to go to any panels I wanted to, or even to leave the Con at will and head out to the beach or to the zoo. Trips and hotel stays in San Diego also seemed less expensive then, and there was no need to reserve a hotel room months in advance; now I don’t go unless one of my publishers helps pick up the tab.
Being committed to appearing on panels has its downside. If I had not been moderating two panels back to back on Friday evening at this yearâ€™s New York Con, I could have attended a reading by Neil Gaiman, a panel appearance by animation legend Ralph Bakshi. or all of the X-Files movie presentation by the showâ€™s creator Chris Carter–all of which were being held at the same time. On the other hand, I really enjoyed listening to the stories that the comics veterans told on my panels, and wouldnâ€™t want to have missed them. I also discovered that organizing and leading a good panel discussion, like arranging a noteworthy party, is like a work of art. Like a theatrical performance, itâ€™s an ephemeral experience, witnessed only by those present, that leaves not a trace behind unless someone wrote a report about it. But a good panel discussion, among a group of people who may only interact this way on this one specific occasion, can be memorable. I take more pride in my active role in bringing such an experience about than I would in my freedom to passively watch other peopleâ€™s panels.
Note to Quick Stop Entertainment: you gotta get rid of those Gremlins! It only takes a run through Text Wrangler!