As the real sakura bloom (and get blown away, or so I'm hearing) back in Japan, I am preparing for my appearances at next week's Sakura-Con 2009, one of the longest running and largest anime conventions in the US, in Seattle, Washington. It's an honor to be invited back, and I'm going to try my damnedest to see friends new and old in what has become one of my favorite American cities over the past few years--no April fooling.
My official event schedule is as follows:
6:00 pm - 7:00 pm Staff Autographs (4B)
7:30 pm Industry Dinner (Palace Ballroom)
10:00 am - 11:00 am Opening Ceremonies (4A)
5:00 pm - 6:00 pm Life as an American in Tokyo (608-609)
6:30 pm Guest Reception Dinner (Grand Hyatt)
12:00 pm - 1:00 pm . State of the Industry (608-609)
1:30 pm - 2:00 pm . Press Conference (601)
4:00pm - 5:00 pm Japanamerica Panel (607)
I'm pleased to announce that my dear friend Bruce Rutledge of Chin Music Press will be joining me for the "Life as an American in Tokyo" panel on Friday afternoon. Bruce is a veteran Tokyoite (indeed, it's where we first met some six or seven years ago) and will have copies of his press's beautiful books--many of which are Tokyo-focused, and to which I've contributed essays--on sale, together with copies of the updated and expanded paperback edition of Japanamerica. Both of us will be happy to sign books in exchange for good will, decency and camaraderie.
I'm told pre-registration numbers are record-breaking this year, so if you're headed to the Pacific Northwest next week, or if you happen to be there already, please stop by and say hello.