Robercon 2016: More Magic Than Ever
Wizards, Jedi, and time travelers: Robercon 2016 had something for everyone. Since it’s my hometown convention, I’ve watched it grow from having no Harry Potter presence to this year’s programming, which included two panels of Potter content and hundreds of people dressed in House colors.
MuggleNet has been involved in Robercon since 2014, when it was the first convention I attended repping the site. Little did I know when I sat down at the panelists table two years ago that the person to my right would soon be part of the MuggleNet team as well (Lizzie S.). Past years of this convention hold a lot of memories for me, and this year was no different.
With the Fantastic Beasts movie premiere quickly approaching, it was the perfect time to speculate, discuss, and debate what we can expect from the new film trilogy. On Saturday, MuggleNet staff and friends headed up a panel to do just that. The audience involvement was amazing, and everyone in attendance was passionate about delving into the roaring twenties of the wizarding world.
On Sunday, we started off our day with an exclusive interview with Tamora Pierce, author of the Song of the Lioness quartet, among many other critically acclaimed fantasy novels. The entire interview and an entertaining round of fantasy and sci-fi Would You Rather can be watched below.
Myself and Creative Team member Stephanie sat in on a panel about social media and how it affects our relationship with authors and fandoms. We discussed how the Internet has united a global fandom. This is something that can be seen just within MuggleNet. Our staff can be found all over the world, but we speak on a daily basis via the Internet, and even though we may see each other in person about once a year if at all, we feel as if we know each other.
Sunday afternoon brought about the ever-heated canon discussion. We touched on each expansion of the wizarding world, including Pottermore, Cursed Child, Fantastic Beasts, and video games. It was a lively discussion with many different views and definitions of one concept: What is Harry Potter canon? From those who think canon is everything J.K. Rowling writes, to those who say it’s strictly the seven novels, to everything in between, everyone was willing to share and bounce ideas off each other, proving why I love this fandom. There is such a desire to discuss, a desire to listen to ideas and form new ones. As someone mentioned during the panel, “I’m glad she never released that encyclopedia, because we might not be having this discussion, then.” While I’m sure I would not go quite so far as to say I’m glad the promised encyclopedia was never printed, I am happy that the spirit of debate is still alive and well in the Harry Potter fandom.