It's that time again! Write-ups of an amazing event while still feeling a little bit of the high.
There were quite a few things that made this one stand out for me. It's the first Wales since I moved and also the first one that coincided with a planned Nimja Live stream (which was canceled, obviously).
And honestly, I was also already over tired before I travelled there. It's been "a bit of a year". I don't think I was the only one...
That being said, the con went fairly smooth and it's still going strong with more improvements every year. The structure was very different from before and it allowed for a bit more to do (too much at times!).
The presenters in alphabetical order:
The event started with the standard introduction, house rules, updates etc and quickly went into the excellent consent talk by Sinister & HypnoHedonista. We did a few exercises with saying no and they shared a small digital handout (click here) to help people get started.
Instead of the chaos of previous years, we spread out over 2 (and a bit) activities with SensualSpiral running the Hypnotic Wheel of Fortune and Sinister & HypnoHedonista's Hypnotic Cocktail Bar, where "totally innocent" (water/soda and dye based) drinks helped people to enjoy some sensations.
The last, much smaller activity was a Hypno 101 class by EnglishHarry for a few interested attendees. The class was based on notes from a presenter that was not able to attend, they were missed.
Since a lot of people had traveled far to get there, the evening itself was fun but not too heavy yet. Usually the major play activities are reserved for Saturday.
My first presentation, Making Minds Mush, was a joy to do. My submissive helped me with the notes and was a very eager subject. We discussed how to layer inductions on top of each other to make the subject completely helplessly mush. The audience participated well and supplied a decently long list of inductions that I used: 7+-2, eye fixation, trying to close your hand, butterfly induction, hair-pull, face-slap, wrist drop and more. As well as a few other shenanigans like a sharp wake (with clap), a fake-out wake and pulling her down after it looked like I was done. You can find most of the inductions here: https://learn.nimja.com/inductions
The second, Brats & Resistance, was a very different kind of fun. It was important to emphasize how bratting is a dynamic and it requires good negotiation and communication to avoid annoyance between the roles. Some volunteers from the audience were happy to help demonstrate that being set up to fail... I mean fall, can be a lot of fun. It's very much about the journey though, not the destination. I will say that the brats did successfully brat with a panicked "no!" and some paper projectiles. More notes on this will probably follow.
I also hosted the round table Creator's Workshop, which allowed some experienced and new people to talk about the various practical, technical and (unfortunately) financial challenges that come with creating erotic hypnosis content online.
Running the Creator's Workshop meant I couldn't attend the "Empathy and Hypnosis" workshop, by Matsuru & Merinthe. I really would have liked to attend this one and I've been told how amazing it was by several people, all with big smiles on their faces.
Fortunately I did manage to experience:
Musical Triggers, by SensualSpiral, contained a really beautiful display of how music is different to everyone. She shared really nice ideas on how to use music both in and out of scenes. As always, her warmth and finesse with her subjects is heartwarming.
Stage Hypnosis, by Lex, was as playful and fascinating as he usually is. Even without his hat (in-joke) he captivated my attention and showed some very fun ways to build up, dig deeper and use fun cheats to keep the ball rolling. Playing with contrasts, unawareness and escalation were shown in a brief demo with four fuzzy volunteers. The audience was giggling along at times.
The rest of the day was filled by speed trance and various sessions and activities (see below).
I'm glad I was able to join two of the presentations in the morning, before the unconference we had planned later that day.
Effective Brainwashing Rituals, by Lex, was a fascinating class. A lot of effort was put into the material. He strongly emphasized to use this for consensual, ethical, negotiated, realistic and beneficial effects. He also highlighted frequent check-ins and to make sure that there are escapes or options. Also, don't get him started on cheesy mantras!
Of Course It Worked, by Sinister & HypnoHedonista, was a very cool class on how to help with the more "advanced" effects. In short; almost every effect can be loosely logicked from another and the more you help people feel convinced by the little things, the easier the bigger things become. In the end, it's all in our head anyway. I took many notes on this one, because it communicated such a good concept!
During the unconference setup in the morning, it was clear that some people wanted to get more detail on fear play, so I ran a lightweight workshop on being dark. Fear is a very powerful focus, after all. And once trapped by it, it can lead into trance so easily. Also, fear, excitement and arousal use many of the same hormones. It's very possible to shift from one state to another.
Beyond some other activities it was (too soon!) time for the closing words, hugs and mugs. It makes sense in context.
To help with keeping things even more anonymous and privacy friendly, these are some of the other highlights in no particular order.
I've done my best to write this while most of the memories are still quite fresh. I was very happy attend and see both familiar and new faces. Fortunately with HYDE being only 5 months away or so, we don't have to wait a whole year again.
A big thank you to the organisers, the helper team, the presenters and ALL the attendees. You are awesome!
ps. I got pelted by light/innocent projectiles again... Hmm, this is becoming a bad tradition.