Lotsa questions coming this way about the Masque, mostly (I guess) since it's new this year. I'm going to do up a little FAQ here, and if you can fire any questions you may still have into the comments section at the end, I'll pop back and answer them over the next few days.
1. Timing. Technically the Masque is our Night Owl event, and therefore does not begin until 9 pm. However, you certainly may come to all the evening festivities, which have been delayed an extra 15 minutes to allow a bit more preparation time, all ready for the Masque, and thereby not miss a minute of the fun.
Here's the way Saturday evening is scheduled to progress:
Workshops end at 5:00 pm. Cash Bar opens.
5:30 pm -- 7:00 pm Book Fair/Author Signing/Social -- This takes place in the Fraser Room. Pick up a passport, get 10 signatures of authors and be eligible for a book draw! Mingle, buy books, get 'em signed, mingle some more.
<Note: 45 minute break here so you can work up an appetite and get yourself ready! Personally, I will be using this time to get my costume on straight...>
7:45 pm Banquet begins. Come eat, drink and be merry. Keynote speech to be given by the one and only, inimitable, wonderful and mellifluous Jack Whyte.
9-ish. Masque officially begins. Goes to at least 11.
2. Attire. Traditionally, we have a bit of a dressy evening for this banquet, but seeing as it is the last Saturday before All Hallow's Eve, this year we are encouraging finery of a different sort. COSTUMES ARE NOT MANDATORY, but of course, are strongly encouraged. A literary motif is encouraged. There WILL be prizes!
3. Facial Cloaking Device. Now here's the thing. This is a Masque, people. That means, by definition, you should wear a mask! If you have a cool one, bring it! But if you don't, fret not. We will have masks AND decorating supplies available all day Friday and Saturday, with the token cost going to raise funds for the Surrey Library's Young People's Writing Contest. It's a good cause, so please support the library, throw your two bucks in the pot and buy a mask! You'll feel good about it all day.
4. <Psst... What happens at a Masque, anyway?> This is just a party, plain and simple. Once the final notes of Jack's inspirational words fade away, the Masque will begin. There will be live music -- a local high school jazz trio will play wyrd and wonderful tunes in the background. We're not having a dance -- just a little music to lighten the evening. The silent auction will continue, with the goods moved inside the Guildford Ballroom so you can have a final shot at winning your bid. (At this point, due to manpower issues, it looks like the silent auction will close at 11 pm.) We'll do a little costume judging, we'll have a cash bar set up in the Ballroom, and it's a chance to mix and mingle with other writers, agents, editors, publishers and mysterious masked marauders. (Okay -- no marauders. But everyone else will be there!) Flit in and out at will, just make sure you have your mask with you! Things close up between 11 and 12, depending on your stamina.
Okay -- that's all I can think of at this point. But if I have forgotten anything, throw your questions into the comments section and we'll go from there.
Oh, and don't forget that your Friday night is also going to be jam-packed with awards, prizes, a fabulous Keynote by Robert J. Sawyer and a NightOwl event like no other ...a live rendition of two very famous, very scary...(roll your rrrrrr's as you say that...verrrry scarrrry) radio plays spearheaded by the one and only Michael Slade.
Hey -- I promised you a good weekend, right? We are going to have FUN!
also blogging as leftwriter
*I do hope you are impressed with the title of this post. Do you know how hard it is to legitimately work three (3!) Qs into one title?