Tag Archives: cosplay

Meet the Guest Fictorians: Author Tonya L. De Marco

Author, model, and professional cosplayer Tonya L. De Marco contributed several articles for the Fictorians over the years after attending the Superstars Writing Seminars.

Fictorians: What are you drinking today?
Tonya L. De Marco: Coffee, coffee, and more coffee.

Fictorians: What have you done for the Fictorians?
Tonya L. De Marco: I’ve written 3 articles as a guest poster.

Fictorians: What genres do you prefer?
Tonya L. De Marco: I mostly prefer writing speculative dark fiction. I’m very in touch with my dark side as you can see if you’ve read my other articles and most of my published work so far. Taboo subjects are also very near and dear to my heart and I often incorporate that into my writing, often along with some type of erotic flavor. I’ve struggled to keep to a PG-13 guideline in the past. I also write non-fiction articles which have been published with Fictorians and in magazines.

Fictorians: What’s your current project?
Tonya L. De Marco: I’m currently working on a short story submission with a deadline of November 30th. It’s a little bit steampunk, a little bit science fiction, and the story involves cats.

Fictorians: What can we expect to see from you in 2018?
Tonya L. De Marco: You can expect to see more articles, more short stories, and hopefully a novella or novelette. I’m trying to learn to draw out my muse when I need her and not just when she want to be heard. Another goal for 2018 is to become a member of more professional writing organizations. I’m currently a member of The Horror Writers  Association.

Fictorians: Besides writing, you’re also a costume designer and professional cosplayer. What was your last project?
Tonya L. De Marco: My last project was designing a dress for an Elvira-inspired cosplay.The dress was very challenging and I learned so much making it! I did a combination of 2 different patterns and my own design elements in drafting the pattern. For the bodice of the dress, I also did a built-in corset for the first time. I see more cosplays I an use this pattern (or a modification of it) for in the future!

Fictorians: What was the last convention you went to and how did it go?
Tonya L. De Marco: I’ve just returned from a convention in Arkansas. I’m not going to name the convention because there were serious issues and possibly fraud associated with at least the promoter. What was wonderful was how all the volunteers, cosplayers and vendors all rallied around each other for support. I feel like I’ve got a new family from the experience.

Fictorians: Where can we find more about you?
Tonya L. De Marco: Mostly on social media and at plenty of conventions across the country. Make sure to check out the “about” section on my Facebook page which I will be updating again shortly.

Tonya L. De Marco – Published Cosplayer/Model and Author
Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/VintageSteamtrunk (page name is Cosplay Tonya)
Member: Horror Writers Association
Website: http://tonyaldemarco.com/
Instagram: https://www.instagram.com/cosplay_tonya/
Amazon Author Page: https://www.amazon.com/Tonya-L.-De-Marco/e/B00I38RNI8/

Fictorians: Anything else you want to say?

Tonya L. De Marco: Thank you very much for the interview, it’s been an honor. Also, if you’d like to see me at a particular convention as an author, a professional cosplayer, or both, please tell the convention programming staff you would like to see me there as a guest. You can send the above links if they ask for them. Thank you!

Confessions of a Con Novice

A few years ago at a writing seminar I was asked if I’d be attending a local upcoming “Con.” I wasn’t exactly sure what a Con was. My friend clarified that she was referring to “Comicon.”

This may come as a surprise to some, but I hadn’t ever heard of Comicon. Or Dragon Con or Worldcon except that it sounded like Worldcom. (No I promise that isn’t a knock at the Hugos. I really was this ignorant).

But I didn’t want to flaunt my ignorance so I googled, Comicon and sure enough there was one in Phoenix that summer.

Have you ever learned an exotic word that you could swear you’ve never heard before, but once you learn it, you hear it everywhere? All of the sudden, everyone I knew was talking about Comicon.

So I gathered the family and we ventured to the conference center. I was blown away at how popular it was. There were crowds upon crowds of people, most dressed up like it was Halloween. Someone asked me if I was into Cosplay. This was also a new word for me and it sounded, well, kinky, so I shook my head and ran away.

As far as the Con, My kids loved it. I loved it. My wife would have preferred about anything else but she obliged, allowing me to be amongst “my people” as she lovingly called the attendees.

So, I’m still a Con novice, but I’m gaining experience. I have attended a smaller con in Arizona and last year I went to Salt Lake Comic Con as a volunteer in the Word Fire Press exhibitor booth.

And today, I have returned one year later to that same Con of Cons to be amongst my Word Fire friends but this time I brought my son and I might even let him Cosplay. Because I’ve made it my mission as a dad to help my children have a better childhood than I had. That’s how we make the world a better place. My son knows what a Con is. He also knows that Salt Lake Comic Con is different (though it is of similar pronunciation) than Phoenix Comicon or San Diego Comic-Con. And there are a good many more Cons of comics and other great things.

Here’s a helpful list and for the sake of humanity, please take your children; after all they are our future.

Salt Lake Comic Con – August 31 – September 3, 2016

San Diego Comic-Con – July 21 – 24, 2016

Phoenix Comicon – June 2 – 5, 2016

Phoenix Comicon – Fan Fest Dec 4 – 6, 2015

Dragon Con (Atlanta) – September 2 – 5, 2016

2016 Worldcon hosted by MidAmeriCon II (Kansas City, MO) – August 17 – 21, 2016

Rose City Comic Con (Oregon) – September 10 – 11, 2016

World Fantasy Con 2015 (Saratoga Springs, NY) – November 5 – 8

World Fantasy Con 2016 (Columbus, OH) – October 27 – 30

Click here to see a bunch more


jace 1I live in Arizona with my family, wife and five kids and a little dog. I write fiction, thrillers and soft sci-fi with a little short horror on the side. I’ve got an MBA and work in finance for a biotechnology firm.

I volunteer with the Boy Scouts, play and write music, and enjoy everything outdoors. I’m also a novice photographer.

You can visit my author website at www.jacekillan.com, and you can read some of my works by visiting my Wattpad page.

The Summer Party Ain’t at the Pool.

Two Mwalgi-aliens at a photo-op with John Barrowman (Phx Comicon 2014)
Two Mwalgi-aliens at a photo-op with John Barrowman (Phx Comicon 2014)

I’m one of the few science-fiction/fantasy fans who knew nothing about conventions until I began writing. The first convention I ever attended was the World Fantasy Convention which tends to focus more on agents, publishers, and authors rather than fans. My eyes have been opened since then. And to think, the fabulous party titled Convention could be found in my own backyard!

I live in the south end of Arizona. You would think that nobody would want to get dressed up in their warm pokemon outfit and go traipsing around in 100+ temperatures for fun, but you’re absolutely wrong.  And after I thought about it, it makes perfect sense. Living in this natural heater, you realize very quickly that summer life consists of getting from refrigerated buildings to refrigerated cars, to either refrigerated buildings or someplace with a lot of cool water. A con fits in perfectly with the refrigerated building scenario. If one is wearing a skimpier outfit, you’ll be absolutely comfortable as you traverse between buildings but feeling the chill whenever you sit in a panel. If you’re wearing the furry pokemon get-up then you’ll swelter when traversing the buildings, but feel cool as a cat in the panels. And if you’re like me and prefer to show up in your street clothes, then you’ll be within your comfort range at all times. All in all, not a bad way to spend a weekend.

But why attend? Why not! A sci-fi/fantasy convention has everything a fan could ever want. You like the gaming aspect? There are panels on the latest video games, RPGs, board games, and card games. There’s almost always a gaming station with a variety of games set up for table-top and/or electronic. You like books (as all of us here do)? There are author panels covering everything from how to write to why we write, there are bookstores, and authors are always available to do signings and talk one-on-one with their fans. Maybe you’re interested in the merchandise. Cons will have tables with everything from Supernatural cell phone cases to Dr. Who scarves and beyond. Seriously, these merchandisers (who are often fans) come up with the coolest stuff I ever would have imagined. But wait, there’s more: cosplay design and tips, fighting reenactments, NASA updates, and the list goes on.

So, all in all, if you haven’t attended a convention yet, or if you haven’t told your friends about how awesome they can be, then it’s time to rectify the situation. If we can handle the heat in Arizona and make it a fun party, then I bet your local cons will be worth it, too.

As an FYI, some of Arizona’s warm-weather conventions are: Tucson Festival of Books in March, LepreCon in May, Phoenix Comicon in June, and CopperCon in August. I’ll be at CopperCon this year and I’m going to try out the cooler weather of Utah in September at Salt Lake Comicon. Hope to see you there.

If you have some local conventions you can tell us about, please leave a comment and let’s spread the fun.