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The Collective gals got into the blogging game because of our burning desire to attend San Diego Comic-Con and coexist IRL with other nerds. If you’ve read the 2-part “Great Comic-Con Disappointment”, you’ll know that we haven’t gotten tickets, well, ever. Still, our adversity created this amazing blog and, as we grumbled much of the summer 2013 (and well into 2014), the fire continued to burn. Over the years, the Collective bloggers spent most of our time at literary conventions (we’re nerds, yes), but the need to connect with fandom is a very real and burning desire. We know finding the perfect, attainable event can become a challenge. Fan conventions are usually sold out a year in advance, which means scoping out the scene well in advance. We attended our first official fan con as a blog team in November 2013, mulling over the $85 single day ticket price for the Burbank Supernatural Convention, for about 15 seconds, before fully committing to cosplay, photo-ops and autograph sessions that turned out to be AMAZING.

My advice? As soon as you hear about a con, Google it. Look it up. Do your research. Find out how much the tickets are, when they usually go on sale and what kind of crowd your particular fan con draws. Then, start buying stuff. A entry ticket here, a photo-op there. Spread out the cost of the items you want to enjoy at the fan con over time, and it won’t hurt as much. Next, check out the list below. It contains my top 5 picks for California fan conventions in 2014. Tell me your favorites in the comments below.

xoxo The Collective Diva

Nov 22-24, the Burbank Marriott hosted a Supernatural Convention that included appearances from cast members, fans in cosplay, and us, the Collective gals.IMAG5409 Armed with an angel at my side, I basked in the electric atmosphere of my first Creation Entertainment Supernatural Convention, taking notes and grinning ear to ear, praising Chuck that The Collectress had the foresight to purchase Sunday passes and cursing end!verse Samifer that we didn’t get to go the entire weekend. I suppose there’s always next year, which is already scheduled with the same venue for November 2014, but for now, let’s look at my top ten moments, shall we?

10) Fellow Fangirls and some boys, too

Oh, the kindred spirit that is an SPN fan. We obsess together on Tumblr, pin on Pinterest and tag on Instagram, but it is the mythical J2 Con that brings us together IRL. And boy, did the fans come out on Sunday. There were at least 2000 people in the auditorium while J2 were on stage, everyone taking pics and squeeing on cue when the boys did something funny and/or adorable. Plus, there were fans of all ages, sizes, ethnicity and not just fangirls, but guys, too. I’d guestimate the ratio was about 20:1 in terms of women versus men, and, while it seemed that many were fathers or boyfriends of said fangirls, it was nice to see dudes showing love to J2 and the cast. After I got home and kicked off my combat boots, I searched #BurCon and easily found some of the friends I made in line on the social media site, making the experience seem all the more familial. I can understand why the cast enjoys doing these cons so much. Supernatural really is a family business.

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9) The Creation Entertainment staff

When The Collectress initially purchased the tickets, instead of getting two seats next to each other, she accidentally bought them one in front of the other. Since it was her mistake, we figured Creation Entertainment wouldn’t help us out, but she emailed them anyway. Wouldn’t you know, the company not only gave us new seats, but they ended up being a few rows closer to the stage than the ones we initially purchased. No hassle, no attitude, just friendly service. This kindness carried over to the gentle way the volunteers dealt with fans at the actual con–kindly pointing me in the right direction more than a couple times. Thank you to kind volunteer in red (I didn’t catch her name) who hadn’t eaten all day and still needed to pack up and travel home to San Francisco that evening. She managed to answer every question I threw at her that day with a patient smile, letting me know that she was still having a great time even if she has worked her butt off all weekend.