One must maintain a sense of humor.
May I put in a plug for Neil Gaiman? Not only is he a fantastic writer but he is a sterling human being. The official Guest of Honor for this convention, he signed on long ago. He credits his minder (and she is wonderful) but it takes a mensch to faultlessly make all panels, signings, and presentations even when exhausted. He even took time one evening to have sushi with the teens. (yes, Ms Maus was there and thrilled). Believe me when I note that several of the well less important authors refuse to have anything to do with those under age.
In contrast, the Master of Ceremonies – Julie Czerneda – managed to cancel on everything except for her performance at the Masquerade. I am afraid I missed the name of the gentleman who provided the French half of the announcement for which I am truly sorry. He was lovely and extremely funny.
If you want photos from the Masquerade – this is the link to the low resolution version and has some great pictures.