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  • Writer's pictureJohn Simons

The Weirdest Thing I've Done as a Professional


Weirdness isn’t a thing people usually brag about in professional settings. I’ve never seen it listed on a resume. But it’s a word choice decision. “Weird” is seen as an ugly, negative word and is replaced by its prettier cousins like “innovative” or “creative.” But a lot of business fortunes have been made when a company took a weird turn, like the fact that Crocs were included in the movie Idiocracy as everyone’s footwear because they were so weird and unattractive that they fit the theme of the movie. And now here we sit today with Crocs on everyone’s feet while the Crocs execs count out their fortunes made from the weirdness of their shoe wear.


Coming from entertainment –particularly the sectors of conventions, comics, games, and novels—being weird is a lot less of a stigma. In short, I have done a lot of weird things and am proud of them. But the weirdest thing in my career was holding an imaginary convention.

You may already know about this because it just happened. I invited authors to participate in a science fiction convention that they couldn’t attend. Instead of the authors going, I asked them to write flash fiction about characters from their books going to RinthCon, a fictitious convention taking place in the year 2323.


The flash fiction pieces were posted on social media over five days so the public could follow developments at the con like they would follow live events on social media. RinthCon turned out to be a lot of fun.


But when it was over it seemed wrong for RinthCon to be an ephemera that would disappear and be forgotten immediately. So we did something we had not planned on doing. We gathered the shorts into a free flash fiction anthology called “The Collected RinthCon 2323” which began garnering 5-star reviews and spent a week in Amazon’s top ten free sci-fi anthologies list.


Sometimes the weirdest things can also be the coolest things you get to do.

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