As some of you may know, before my social media hiatus, I had the pleasure of being a panelist in the December CasaCon.
When I first started my BL Twitter account and made this website, I never imagined I would be tapped for something as big as a con. While simultaneously hoping to become a recognized name/account but accepting that probably wouldn’t happen, I’ve been doing my reviews (barely), reading, and writing all things BL happy as a clam.
My friend Chu (you can find her on Twitter) messaged me one morning asking if I would like to be on a BL panel with her. Almost as if sensing my trepidation, she sent a follow-up that went straight to my ego: you were the first person I thought of when I was asked to find co-panelists.
And how could a mostly insecure, severe FOMO-having girl like me refuse?
Fun fact, COVID hit just as I was starting to become a total weeb and Fujoshi. In other words, just when I was ready to attempt going to my first con, cons everywhere were a no-go. So my first experience going to con was during COVID and all virtual. But, to be honest what Fujo wouldn’t love their first con being one dedicated to the love of BL? That’s right, I’m talking about FujoCon. I’ll write about that experience in another post, but I wanted to give some context.
CasaCon, while not BL focused, was BL friendly, which is why I think it made the first panelist and non-BL specific con experience so wonderful.
From the beginning, it was clear that Jasmine and Bernardo (double check names) wanted to create a safe space for all fans of anime, etc. to come together and bond over our shared interests and serve as a source of comfort for the end of the year. Many of us have been cooped up in our apartments like good noodles, with little human interaction.
With the memory of FujoCon burning brightly in my mind, I was excited to connect to a community again!
For those that didn’t attend, CasaCon was created with the aims of connecting the community during these disconnecting times. In addition to our “De-stigmatizing BL” panel, there were panels for small indie games, writers, kickstarter campaigns, and so much more! I felt like I was on board for a real experience when I looked through the schedule and made my plan (as I always do).
Unlike FujoCon, everything was done through Discord. I’ve grown to really love Discord and liked that I didn’t have to stray from the app to be “in the know” during the weekend. On the flip side of that, Discord has its own limitations. Not to brag or anything, but our panel was PACKED the whole time💁🏾♀️
I also really appreciated the diversity in topics for panels and the panelists. Like, it was so refreshing and inspiring to see another Black woman panelist (even better that she’s a writer!), S.C. Parris!! Each day there was a panel that addressed mental wellness in some capacity which was well needed and helped me feel better about not feeling better.
All in all, I really enjoyed my experience as a first time panelist! I was a little camera shy (because let’s be honest I hardly ever wear clothes or look presentable), but I loved the conversation that sprung up between Chu, Michi (of the VVBG), and myself. We’re aiming for a repeat performance…😉
The cool thing about CasaCon is that they’re still active in their server! If you want to stay on top of the small events and sessions they’ve been holding, give them a follow in Twitter! They also plan to hold another Con soon, and I promise you don’t want to miss out🥳 They’ve already started looking for panelists and are BL friendly! So if there’s a BL-focused panel you’ve always wanted to pitch, now’s the time 😊
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