At tonight's BASFA meeting, Wendy Pini came for a visit to talk about Masque of the Red Death, her animated online graphic novel whose final part was published in 2010 and thus is eligible for the 2011 Hugo Awards. This was a much lower-pressure environment than a convention with tens of thousands of people attending it. When I explained to Wendy the mechanics of the situation should she actually get a Hugo Award nomination and explained the likely size of this year's Worldcon (I'm predicting between 3,000 and 4,000 attending, although more would be nice), she described that as an "intimate" setting, and I can understand that.
Wendy donated a copy of the print edition of volume 1 of the graphic novel from Go!Comi (no further print editions were published as the company went out of business) to the BASFA auction and offered to autograph and draw a sketch for the winner. My time had arrived. I expect that for this item, my pockets would prove deeper than anyone else's, and I was right.
When it came to the sketch itself, she said it was fine if I asked for an EQ character, and therefore I asked for my favorite character from the series, Skywise. Back when I was in college and weighed about half what I do now (although I wasn't appreciably shorter than my current 190 cm), I put together a Skywise costume, a photo of which I put into my Fan Guest of Honor exhibit at the Seattle NASFiC of 2005. (I must have the scan here somewhere, but it's buried in the shuffle of moving computers.)
I left tonight's meeting in a happy cloud of fanboy squee. I tried not to be too awful, but I did say in front of BASFA, while thanking her for coming, that her work was the spark that pushed me into fandom, and that it's not saying too much to suggest that if it weren't for her, we wouldn't have had a Worldcon in San Jose in 2002.