After watching one of my long-running campaigns come to a screeching halt a couple of weeks ago, I've devoted the last two weekends to preparation of four one-shot adventures for the upcoming 2012 Phoenix Vul-Con.
Although I've certainly done it numerous times over the years, preparing for convention games is a unique experience. When I run games for my regular gaming groups, I've got a reasonable idea of what may fire up my players (though this can vary at times), and if nothing else, I can always ask.
Obviously, there is no feedback loop in time to do any good with a player group at a session. You can playtest it with your regular group (unless some of those folks want to play it at the con, but that's about it) for length, but even that is a different experience than it will be for first-time players who don't know you as a GM, in most cases won't know the game system, and likely don't even know each other.
So what does a conscientious GM do? In my case, I've created (or chosen, in the case of the couple of pre-made adventures I'm running) games that I think I can run successfully, and would enjoy playing in as a player.
In the coming days, I'll discuss the four adventures I'm running, and comments on each of them (spoiler free, of course), on why I chose them, and the things I think they bring to a con game.