Thursday, June 1, 2017

Daemons Discuss - Podcast: Special Edition! | A Conversation with Laura Ventura - Fan of the All Souls Trilogy and All Souls Con Organizer!


Special Edition - The One With the Campaigner

Description: Today we are talking with one of our favorite fellow fan-girls, our friend, and now an official "friend of the podcast," Laura Ventura! Not only is she a fan-girl, but she is one of the organizers of All Souls Con, a fan convention for fans, created by fans! It is named "The One With the Campaigner," because that's Laura's personality profile (! Is it any surprise? We are so thrilled to have her reminiscing about All Souls Con 2015, and anticipating All Souls Con 2017 with us. We brought her on because we wanted the audience to get All Souls Con information straight from the source, not just second-hand from us. She drops some spoilers, and gives you a general idea of what to look forward to, whether you are live-streaming or attending in person! We have a couple of surprises in store as well . . .

SPOILER ALERT! We (The Daemons) approach this podcast with an assumption that the listener has read The All Souls Trilogy, including A Discovery of Witches, Shadow of Night, and The Book of Life.  If you haven't, and you don't mind, we certainly don't mind!  😊  Let's do this.


1. Show notes:

For newcomers to the series:
- We'll start with the basics: The books in discussion are A Discovery of Witches, Shadow of Night and The Book of Life.  Together they make The All Souls Trilogy by Deborah Harkness. 
- Our Daemon Guides to the All Souls Trilogy are available for download: ADOW, SON, TBOL

Deb's newsletter - The Blast; subscribe on her website
- If you'd like a ready-reference from the author herself, be sure to download the All Souls Real-Time Reading companion (free e-book at online booksellers via Penguin and Headline books).
- Deborah Harkness usually conducts a real-time reading on her Facebook Page (starting in September), and shares her posts across social media. Check out her website for all of her social media links, and of course all that she has to offer her readers! Be sure to sign up for her newsletter while you are there!
- To see what's available on the web as far as the All Souls universe fandom, check our links page.

In this episode:
* (00:38) - All Souls Con info:
Passes: $79, virtual passes: $0 (! --> thanks goes to Penguin Books for sponsoring the live stream)  All early bird prices end the 15th of June, 2017 — Virtual passes will remain absolutely free!  Regular passes will go up to $99. 
* (01:00) - Laura started as just a fan. Her convention experience started with the Sword of Truth series; she attended Dragon Con, and realized it was entirely fan/volunteer run. She spoke at fan panels there. She also loves Harry Potter and came across other conventions. She saw Deb speaking and thought this series needed a convention; the overall idea for ASC started there!

* (04:06) - Angela recalls how passionate Laura was in the fandom in 2014, when we were one of the few tweeting out to cyberspace (we were strictly Armitage4Clairmont at this time. Daemons Domain/Discuss did not exist!)

One of the early tweets prior to Daemons Domain/Discuss, and MAINLY prior to All Souls Con!
* (05:06) - Laura is a campaigner! Not a shock!

* (05:45) - There is nothing like meeting other fans in person! We are a testament to that! The Daemons see each other occasionally, but we talk every day!

* (07:30) - Laura and Karen have been friends for years, and have been geeking out over their favorite books/series.

* (08:27) - Laura and Karen decided to do this convention without a movie or television series. They believed it was strong enough to do a convention without it. They pitched it to Penguin Books and Penguin loved it. They also had to show that they could pull it off. Laura is in marketing, and Karen has organized conventions for charities.

All Souls Con 2015 - the ballroom at the Sofitel, Los Angeles. Photo/Lilly Derway
* (10:00) - In December 2014, Deb liked the idea and they got the thumbs up. So Laura spent that Christmas holiday building the website. ASC 2015 was born!

* (11:00) - The U.S. based charity that the proceeds from ASC go to is Bodley’s American Friends. They are 501c3 charity. ASC doesn’t make a dime on proceeds. This is a labor of love!

New Orleans! The site of All Souls Con in 2017!
* (12:14) - This year it’s in NOLA! Hosted at the NOPSI hotel, New Orleans, LA. It was a collective decision to change the location, pricing and model from 2015.

* (13:52) - Two locations were proposed; the second location is also related to the books … stand by. Laura says we’ll find out SOON.

* (14:45) - The video for the 2015 convention is on homepage.

* (15:20) - Join the All Souls Con Attendee Facebook Group!

* (16:49) - Join our event: The Daemon Hour

* (17:11) - New Orleans is open container … if that is a temptation point, join us! Hey, you never know what would tip people over the edge to just say "f*ck it!" 😜

* (17:31) - Angela meant 😏 That’s the official place to see announcements, speakers etc. There will be a panel with the authors of The World of All Souls, and there will be a workshop with a molecular biologist as well. Dr. Shelli Carter is a professor who LOVES the series (and the science behind the trilogy).

* (19:22) - Laura says she’ll be 85 and organizing conventions with the information in these books! We also may be geriatric Daemons doing All Souls things.

* (20:14) - Panels vs. Workshops? Panels are interactive; more of a conversation. A workshop is more of a teaching/learning environment, and you are active in learning to do something new.

* (22:41) - Shelli has designed and taught a course on “The Science of the Supernatural,” which examines whether there is any scientific or medical basis behind creatures such as Diana, Matthew, and Hamish. The workshop will focus on the science in the series including mtDNA.

Our panel name is a play on the song that reminds Deb of Baldwin; Sympathy for the Devil
* (22:57) - Empathy for the Devil is our fan-panel title this year. We will attempt some mind-bending exercises by employing empathy with secondary characters (using Deb’s classroom lesson with Henry VIII as a model).

* (25:00) - Even if you live stream, you can participate via Twitter or directly through ASC prior to the convention; ASC solicits questions before the event.

* (25:39) - WE didn’t even know that we were going last time! We hesitated, but we decided that we may as well check it out, because fate and airline prices (they were low enough at the time), convinced us to go! We wound up hosting the very first fan-panel at ASC! Laura is right, once you go once, you want to go every time.

* (26:53) - You have full permission to act like a 12 year old. We know about it because we give ourselves the go-ahead to act 12 while recording our podcast! Think: 12 year olds that can drink. 😝

The movie Big
* (27:35) - We are basically the movie “Big” 😬

* (27:53) - Feel free to get into it! Wear your swag! Cosplay, or whatever! Come dolled up! There will be contest!

* (29:30) - "Boob knives"? πŸ€” That reference is clarified in the show notes of this episode on alchemy. 🀣

* (30:50) - The convention may be set up in classroom style, depending on how many people attend.

* (31:26) - There will be a trivia contest sponsored by The All Souls Discussion group on Facebook. Will the authors of The World of All Souls be willing to participate?

* (33:15) - EARLY BIRD PRICES ARE STILL ON! Good through June 15th, 2017: The livestream tickets remains free thanks to Penguin books!

* (34:00) - Live-streaming participants are coming in from 20 countries, in person participants are from 30 states in the US, people are coming in from Canada, and 1 participant is arriving from the UK.

Our giveaway from ASC 2015 for passholders only.
* (35:29) - We at Daemons Domain/Discuss will be putting on a giveaway for only ASC live streaming participants. We give out good prizes - or as Jean said "we give good prize!" Here was our giveaway from last time: A Giveaway for ASC Online Pass-holders

* (36:37) - We love giveaways, and we’ve found it’s good Karma. Angela wins giveaways all of the time, we say it's because we put out the good giveaway Karma vibes all of the time! See our past giveaways <-- here.

* (37:08) - Email ASC at --> all souls con (one word) at gmail [dot] com. They also have a contact form. Reach them on Facebook, Twitter, Instagram, and see photos from the event in 2015 on Flickr.

* (37:39) – Promo break. See how to support & get a hold of us below! Scroll down, or click here.

* (39:18) - Laura can’t wait! She also thinks the stars are aligning for the TV show. She referred to Val’s comparison of the fandom to shrimp (refer to these shownotes), and the blooper on Take 15! Jean’s great for bloopers, but truth be told, ALL OF THE DAEMONS have some doozies that we could post! Maybe someday . . . πŸ˜³πŸ™ƒ

* (41:36) - The title “Hamish in the Middle” was not intended to be salacious! True, normally we would take it there, but we slipped this time. It was actually intended like "Malcom in the Middle!" We'll do better with the risquΓ© entendre in the future ! πŸ˜†

* (42:27) - Jean is anticipating all of the places we are going to eat. Definitely Acme Oyster House.

One of the fish markets at Pike Place! Apparently, they pack fish to fly home with you in TSA safe containers.
* (43:00) - Angela flew a bunch of seafood home from Seattle! We didn’t even know this is possible. At the City Market on Pike, you can do this. They will pack a TSA safe cooler for you to take with you.

United 😠! Yikes! Yes, we've got jokes...
* (43:52) - Angela is going to pull the trigger and buy her airline tickets to go to ASC. Jean found out that she has enough miles to get a free ticket to ASC. Valerie has to start getting serious because her cheapest option is United (and she’s still side-eyeing United). She may change her mind if the price goes down. Everyone has a price!

* (45:22) - Sleeping on planes - we can't.

* (46:14) - Valerie hopes the weather is nice in NOLA for September; Jean brings up the fact that it comes up at the tail end of hurricane season! We knock on wood to banish the thought. Also, Val can’t let go of the fact Angela took the sun with her back to the Chicago area leaving Seattle cloudy (and sad) that she left!

Previous Episode
Take 16, The One With the Owl

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Credits/Copyright Information 
* Intro music: "Ghost Dance" (edited down to second chorus) by Kevin Macleod, licensed for use by Creative Commons.
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