Saturday, October 12, 2019

Left Coast Sherlockian Symposium, Late Morning!

A fifteen minute break, and back to it. Chuck Kovacic is up, and after being entertained by a few of his stories at breakfast, I'm looking forward to his presentation on 221B recreations. It takes a bit for Elinor to get everyone settled down, with a laugh and a smile, but she gets the job done.

Two methods for setting up a Sherlockian sitting room? I can't wait!

Annnnd, we have a speaker with some stage presence in Chuck, a fact that becomes immediately apparent. He's left the microphone behind and is . . . oh my word, amd I going to be able to even blog during this? Capturing the energy of this one is going to be hard.  Right off, we know, that that Playmobile 221B sitting room recreations don't count, among other things. Chuck's origins as an actor playing Sherlock Holmes at corporate events and the accuracy required of his cosplay and personal effects lead off his journey to 221B. Good stuff.

Obsession. Attention to detail. The difference between American Victorian and English Victorian. The level it takes to go full-bore into a 221B Baker Street recreation. Marylebone townhouses. John Portman, builder of townhouses. Parliament. (Mistresses.) Three classes of townhouse. 97 year leases. Women could acquire them, Mrs. Hudson did. No standard staircase builds, nor otherwise.The "palace design." So much data being imparted.

The Downey Jr. sitting room takes some heat as soon as we get into the furnishings of 221B, and we get back to starting with the 1951 Festival of Britain recreation. Trying to make 1895 with antiques that look current is rough.  Slipper chairs -- American ones have ornaments on the top.  The trials of a bearskin rug. (Side note, as my poke-friend Jen pointed out it's a community day for Pokemon Go, I had to check for trapinches at this point. Got a shiny one first throw. Multi-tasking!)

Gasogene. Seltzogene. We learn the difference. Victorian British staplers? The level of detail that Chuck Kovacic is blazing through from a lifetime of focus on this one room is incredible. He has to be the world's master on the topic at this point. Has to be. I hope any first-timers don't think that he's the average Sherlockian guy, because, boy, is he way beyond that. And 221B Baker Street LA is for sale, so cash in your 401K.

Haley and Elizabeth are up next with "Gimme More Holmes: Holmestice, Fanworks Exchanges, and Fan Engagement with Sherlock Holmes Adaptations. An explanation of transformative fan culture comes first, which a lot of us need, even if we're familiar with what it is, as it's big. Very big. Fanfic, fanart, fanvids, all the ways we can go "What if?" about a creation. The participatory and gift aspects of the fanwork culture are very cool, and Haley goes deep into about as many aspects of it as Chuck did with his furniture.

When Elizabeth comes up, we're moving on to the more Sherlock Holmes specific aspects of fan culture as it relates to scion culture. Tying familiar movies to varieties of fic is a great move: Murder By Decree = Case-fic, Sherlock Holmes in New York = Ship-fic, Seven Per-Cent Solution = Alternate Universe, etc.  This was a great choice for those people in the room for those who aren't familiar with fanworks.

And we're back to Haley for Holmestice, a holiday gift exchange. ("Give one, get one.") It's origins came from a splinter off other fan exchanges to fill a void, inclusive of all Holmeses, not just BBC Sherlock. "The mouse one, the robot one . . ." All of them. Twice a year on the solstices, mostly stories, but other creative endeavors as well. (Finger puppets, even.) Sign-ups, matching, the creation period, pinch-hitting (to fill gaps), posting (anonymous), guessing (who made what), and reveals -- Haley and Elizabeth lay out the whole cycle of Holmestice for us, and wow, what an endeavor. Very inspiring!  943 works in 53 different Sherlockian fandoms over 9 years and 18 rounds. Very impressive as well.

The percents of various Holmeses in the Holmestice exchange is fascinating, and how, as BBC Sherlock starts to fade in popularity "More!Holmes," the category of all those other non-major, non-Canon Sherlocks has grown to fill the void. Participation numbers in Holmestice are very impressive, with a returning writer rate that the BSJ would envy, given the stats we saw earlier.

The range of Sherlock Holmes fandom groups is so diverse, and Holmestice exposes it's participants to versions of Sherlock they may have never seen. There is just so much out there now, that no Sherlockian can hope to know it all, it sounds like a great way to explore our favorite characters.

Gourmet box lunches are next, so on we go! Forgive me if the writing/spelling/anything on these posts is a bit shabby. Listening and writing simultaneously isn't the idea way to do words, but I'm trying!

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