Tag Archives: Armistice

Armistice AAR

Greetings all

I am home safely from a fantastic trip to Armistice. I’m so glad I went.

For those who aren’t aware, Armistice was a replacement event for the largest SCA event around, Pennsic. It was held at the same site as Pennsic, Cooper’s Lake Campground in Slippery Rock, PA. There were about 1450 attendees where Pennsic has about 10,000. Pennsic is an official SCA event run in partnership with the campground.

First, the weather was awesome. Best weather I’ve ever seen at events at this time. We had one day with a little rain. The rest were in 70s/low 80s. Cool at night. The final Saturday was a little warm and humid, but still better than many days I’ve enjoyed at Cooper’s Lake.

From a work standpoint, it was an unqualified success.

It has been my experience that the first time a particular group has an event after things got started, I saw less traffic but had a higher hit rate. This was true for Armistice. Now, of course I’d see less traffic with about 1/7th  the attendance, but the hit rate was solid for sales. In fact, I sold more this year than I’ve sold at any Pennsic.

I was lucky in that a couple of my regulars from previous Pennsics were there and they both bought a bunch, but even so I sold more than I have in the past.

I also managed to get a short story out the door, make progress on another short story, and make progress on the final rush of stories for the upcoming Talons & Talismans anthologies.

I was an idiot for scheduling the deadline *during* this event, by the way, but I muddled through. I had less time for writing, however, so I didn’t reach my overall writing goals. As mentioned, though, I was moderately productive in this too.

One big thing is that I now have a traditional shop location at Pennsic. It’s between Calontir Trim and Gaukler Medieval Wares across from Windrose Armory. This is, in many ways, the ideal spot for me. Makes me excited to go back next year.

From a personal standpoint, I had a great time. In fact, this will go down as one of the best medieval events I’ve attended. I attribute this in part to everyone’s desire to have fun.

This may sound odd, but it is the case that some people participate in things in part so they can be doomsayers. This tendency has, not surprisingly, been in full force of late. Nobody at Armistice was unaware of the world’s challenges, but the naysayers didn’t come. I think everyone went there with the intent to be cheerful and spread that cheer.

So many smiles. So much friendship, even amongst people who hadn’t met before. The friends I see once or twice a year are my favorite part of Pennsic, and while I missed a bunch who weren’t there, I had more than a few who were. Plus, I got to know some people I hadn’t really talked to before.

I also discovered just how important Pennsic is to me. It’s been my summer home for over 20 years now. I knew I missed it last year, but not how much. I discovered the truth when I got a hug from a buddy at Gate, and I almost broke down crying then and there.

So good to be home. A refrain repeated by many throughout the week.

I spent a lot of time at the campsite hosted by Elizabeth Silverloc where High Rafters normally camps. This was the biggest concentration of friends at the event, plus there were bardic circles several nights. Exactly my thing.

Another positive thing is that my attempts to eat and drink wisely went pretty well. I basically held my weight during the event. Since it’s become clear that a big challenge for my weight are my trips to events and cons.

I went with the plan to drink primarily low-carb IPAs. There are several good ones out there. My two favorites are Slightly Mighty and the Lagunitas Daytime. The latter is dryer and reminiscent of Schlafly’s APA, one of my favorites. I also had the Sweetwater option, which was solid, but not great like the other two.

Anyway, these allowed me to essentially drink as much as I wanted to without hammering all the carbs and getting blasted. They aren’t my all-time favorite IPAs, but certainly more than tasty enough. Since I drink sparingly anymore unless I’m at events and cons, their low ABV helps me not be stupid. Ideal all around, in my mind.

My only disappointment was that I didn’t really party as much as I’d hoped. I should have opened the shop later and let myself roam a bit more. I wanted to meet people I’d not seen before, and I didn’t do much of that.

Basically, I had a great time. It is the case that I love selling/writing during the day with the opportunity to spend time with friends in a medieval setting. It’s like the ideal work day for me.

I’m ready to go back.


Rob’s Update: At Cooper’s Lake Campground

Week 29 of 2021

Greetings all

Sorry for being late this week. I arrived in Pennsylvania later than anticipated on Wednesday, so I couldn’t post my update early. And then yesterday and Thursday were devoted to setting up my booth and camp here at Armistice.

Armistice is being held at Cooper’s Lake Campground where Pennsic has been held since the early 70s. They have developed this to an really nice place to relax in many ways, even if you’re not camping here for an event. The changes in the 20 years or so I’ve been coming here are truly astounding.

I knew this spot of the world was important to me but not how much until I got here to check in. In the line, a old friend of mine, who happens to be one of the people who attended the first SCA event ever in 1966, came up and gave me a hug. Not an abnormal way we greet each other but I nearly cried.

It is incredibly good to be home again.

Anyway, this will be a fantastic week for me. I’m set up with a little office as part of my booth, so I essentially have full functionality to write as if I was at Brewbaker’s or something like that at home. If people aren’t here, I get to write. In the past, this has been a fruitful week and I expect no different.

I will be finishing a short story today and tomorrow for a fun little anthology. Today is also the deadline for stories for Talons & Talismans, and I’m excited with what’s come in. You’re going to love these.

Given the schedule, I anticipate providing you all a full list of participants in the anthologies on the 15th or so. While I have no limitations on my writing, there are some limitations on getting out to print stuff. Based on what I’ve seen so far, I’m going to have to give a number of finalists a thorough, proper read through. I already know it’s going to be tough because there’s some great stuff.

With that, it’s time to start selling.

What I’m Listening To

People chatting and enjoying the fantastic weather so far at Armistice.

Quote of the Week

Dusty Hill of ZZ Top passed away this week. Some of ZZ Top’s music, especially the earlier stuff, is truly amazing. Today’s quote is from a song where Dusty was the singer.

I been bad, I been good,
Dallas, Texas, Hollywood.
I ain’t askin’ for much.
I said, Lord, take me downtown,
I’m just lookin’ for some tush.
― Dusty Hill, ZZ Top, Tush

New Mythology Works in Progress

Current open anthology calls:

I’m currently working on collecting all the stories together so I can process Tolons & Talismans.

Rob’s Works in Progress

  • Rick Blaine (8,845)
  • CB (8,418)
  • CSC (1,283)
  • MON (829)

Upcoming Events

New Releases

And Break It Not by Robert E. Hampson and Sandra Medlock is the newest 4HU title. The return of the Wrogul! You can find it here: https://www.amazon.com/dp/B09BBZY6GS.

We have not one but two new series in the CKP world.

First is book one of the Abner Fortis, ISMC series: Cherry Drop by P.A. Piatt. This you can get here: https://www.amazon.com/gp/product/B09B14VBK2.

Next is book one of the The Lunar Free State series by John E. Siers, entitled The Moon and Beyond. You can find it here: https://www.amazon.com/gp/product/B097QMN7PJ.

Today’s Weight: Will update in two weeks

Updated Word Count: Will update in two weeks

Shijuren Wiki: Will update in two weeks

Let me know if you have any suggestions on the website, this email, or cool story ideas at rob@robhowell.org. Especially let me know of suggestions you have for the Spotlight section.

Have a great week, everyone.

Rob Howell

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