GeekGirlCon happens every October in Seattle. I had so much fun last year that I went this year as a volunteer. And I had a great time, as I fully expected. But what I didn’t expect was to come away so dang inspired.
1. I got inspired to make a game.
At GeekGirlCon, you don’t just sit around playing games. I mean, you could if you wanted to, but you could also choose to (as I did) spend some time talking to the local indie board game designers and learning about the local indie board game designer community (can you believe this is a thing!). And then I went to a panel about making a video game. And this got me thinking: if I were to make a board game, if I were to make a video game, what would they be like? I realized that I actually have the coding skills necessary to make a video game if I wanted to, which for some reason was startling. Seeing and hearing these folks reminded me that making a game really is an attainable goal– and reminded me how much I enjoy gaming, gamer culture, and making stuff.
2. I got inspired to make friends.
The ladies (and gentlemen!) I talked to and worked with all weekend consistently impressed me by being cool and interesting. Now, I’m not the type to become besties over a weekend, but neither are a lot (maybe most?) of geek girls. BUT. GeekGirlCon apparently knows this, and has arranged meetups over the course of the year (more board games!). I now definitely want to go and hang out with more cool and interesting people.
3. I got inspired to make a difference in the lives of girls.
My favorite moment of the whole weekend was not helping to generate geek-themed Pictionary cards, or finally obtaining art from Katie Clark after drooling over it for a year, or learning about Story Games Seattle, or seeing SO MUCH Steven Universe cosplay; my favorite moment happened when I got to teach the game Suspend to a group of young girls (tweens? teens? I have no idea). They astounded me by being friendly, cool, smart, better at the game than me!, and only minimally crabby with their sisters. As I was wandering around reflecting on this experience, I happened across an info booth for the Girl Scouts. And I thought, why not get involved? I like teaching, I like exploring new things, I like making the world a better place– and if the girls are anything like the ones I met this weekend, I would even like hanging out with them. So I put my name on the “interested in volunteering” list.
Such a great experience. I’m sad this con only happens once a year. Then again, it’s kind of a relief: if I want to actually follow through with all this inspiration, I’m going to need a full year!