rosefox: The Readercon logo flipped to read R F. (readercon)
[personal profile] rosefox
The Readercon concom had our final meeting yesterday at the hotel, and would like to share some knowledge gained. The Burlington Marriott has decided to proceed with hotel renovations that will include the likely closing of the pub and the lobby during Readercon. Nothing is guaranteed, and the construction has not yet even begun, but the renovation plans have proceeded to the point where we have contingency plans.

The Summer/Winter restaurant is scheduled for extended restaurant hours, in addition to having a bar menu option until 1 am.

The lobby or hallway will include extensive concessions this year, including grilled vegetables and grilled meat options, and hopefully salad.

We have also added an additional adjoining room to the Readercon Consuite, so as to accommodate possible increased traffic, and the Green Room will possibly be relocated further down the hall from program rooms this year, but it will include more privacy.

We appreciate everyone's patience during this trying time, and will do our best!
rosefox: The Readercon logo flipped to read R F. (readercon)
[personal profile] rosefox

Read it! Love it! Download the PDF pocket program and highlight it!

Of particular note:

Every Readercon features a uniquely literary and entertaining Saturday night event (opposite a "mini-program" of panels, talks, and readings). This year we're proud to be inaugurating a variety show, A Most Readerconnish Miscellany, as a benefit for Operation Hammond and the Boston Area Rape Crisis Center. C.S.E. Cooney and Mike Allen will emcee this extravagant evening of music, theater, and readings. Bring cash or credit cards to make donations to our very worthy beneficiaries, all while being entertained by exquisite performers including Andrea Hairston and Pan Morigan, Daniel José Older, John Kessel, Sonya Taaffe, Caitlyn Paxson, and the renowned a capella group Sassafrass.

The event takes place on Saturday July 13. A speculative poetry open mic will warm up the crowd starting at 7 p.m.; if you'd like to participate, sign up in advance at the information desk. The variety show runs from 8 to 10 p.m. Don't miss this unforgettable event!
rosefox: The Readercon logo flipped to read R F. (readercon)
[personal profile] rosefox
Dear friends of Readercon,

Readercon is pleased to share with you the Code of Conduct and policies that will be in place for Readercon 24, as well as the procedures we will be following in the event of a report of a violation of the aforementioned code of conduct.

Code of Conduct

As always, we welcome all feedback at and look forward to seeing you next month.

Crystal Huff, con chair,
Kim Riek, safety chair,
Rose Fox, program chair,
rosefox: The Readercon logo flipped to read R F. (readercon)
[personal profile] rosefox
Program sign-up has opened to our invited guests. If you're on the guest list and didn't get an email from us with information on signing up, please email and we'll sort things out for you.

A preliminary list of this year's program items is up on our website. If you spot a typo or other error, please let us know so we can fix it before the program guide is printed! Now is also a great time to start reading our book club and blog club selections, the books that will be discussed in the "How I Wrote" talks, and the works of our guests of honor.

If you find these program items inspiring, feel free to suggest some for next year.
rosefox: The Readercon logo flipped to read R F. (readercon)
[personal profile] rosefox
Inspired by Jim C. Hines's suggestion of a Best Pie Hugo Award, Readercon's Book Clubs will be Bake Clubs this year.

Readercon Classic Bake Club: share your family recipes!
Readercon Recent Bake Club: molecular gastronomy and other innovations!
Readercon Pie Bake Club: bring your Hugo-worthy contenders!
Readercon Gluten-free Soy-free Nut-free Raw Vegan Bake Club: open to everyone!

The Bake Clubs will be one-hour program items taking place consecutively on Friday afternoon, during which time a nearby room will be designated as a unisex vomitorium for those who want to participate in all four.

...just kidding! Here are the actual Readercon Book Club selections:

Readercon Classic Fiction Book Club: Tam Lin
Pamela Dean's Tam Lin, which reimagines the Scottish ballad as an account of young, bright Janet Carter's tumultuous time at college in the 1970s, was lauded upon its publication in 1991 and has endured as a classic since. We'll explore its resonance and relevance to present-day readers and writers in the context of real-world events that recall Janet's experiences—lengthy wars, challenges to reproductive rights, activism and tensions on college campuses—as well as the increasing popularity of folk tale retellings.

Readercon Recent Fiction Book Club: American Elsewhere
Robert Jackson Bennett's American Elsewhere is a complex work that only gradually reveals its speculative nature, blending magic and technology with horror and humor and something like a murder mystery. Along the way it addresses and critiques concepts of normalcy, nostalgia, family (especially interactions between parents and children), home, and the American Dream. We'll examine it in the context of recent works that touch on similar topics—Catherynne M. Valente's "Fade to White," Daryl Gregory's The Devil's Alphabet—and Bennett's other novels of darkness and strangeness in the American heartland.

Readercon Nonfiction Book Club: The Seven Beauties of Science Fiction
Lauded by Paul Kincaid as "one of the best and most significant works of science fiction criticism to have appeared so far this century," Istvan Csicsery-Ronay, Jr.'s 2009 opus, The Seven Beauties of Science Fiction, is an expansive depiction of the genre as "a constellation of diverse intellectual and emotional interests and responses." We'll discuss and argue with the seven beauties themselves as well as the various notions and methods of analysis that they inspire.

Readercon Blog Club: "The Uses and Value of Realism in Speculative Fiction"
In response to the Readercon 23 panel "Why is Realistic Fiction Useful?", Chris Gerwel wrote a blog post exploring the aesthetic uses of realism in spec fic and other literature. He says, "To be effective, fiction must communicate or reveal something true.... That truth is not necessarily factual (such-and-such happened), but is rather more nebulous and insightful (such-and-such could have happened)." Gerwel goes on to argue that "realistic" descriptions of fantastic things can be a way to help the audience to deal with these concepts, giving them better access to the underlying metaphors of a dragon or a spaceship. He closes by saying, "I believe that quotidian speculative fiction has its place in the genre. And that is precisely because it speaks to different truths than most speculative fiction: it speaks to the little heroisms of daily life, and to the practical challenges that arise from our human and social natures"--an idea that echoes discussions of early science fiction stories written by women, and offers an alternative to the conflation of "realistic" and "gritty." We'll discuss the place of the quotidian in speculative fiction and other aspects of Gerwel's complex and intriguing essay, which resides at .

I'm also delighted to announce that this year's "How I Wrote" talks will be given by Margo Lanagan on The Brides of Rollrock Island, Alaya Dawn Johnson on The Summer Prince, and Daniel José Older on Salsa Nocturna.

We are, as always, "the con that assigns homework". Please join us in reading all these works and discussing them at Readercon.

See you in July!
rosefox: The Readercon logo flipped to read R F. (readercon)
[personal profile] rosefox
Dear friends of Readercon,

We've got an update for you regarding our continuing efforts to make Readercon a safer convention. Please read it here:
rosefox: The Readercon logo flipped to read R F. (readercon)
[personal profile] rosefox
What would you like to talk about at the next Readercon? We want YOUR program ideas! Send us a link to an interesting blog post that made you think, a one-sentence summary of a cool idea, or a fully formed program item description complete with pithy title--whatever you like. We'd especially love to see suggestions for our book clubs and program items celebrating and investigating the works of our guests of honor: Patricia McKillip, Maureen McHugh, and Roger Zelazny.

We also welcome suggestions for people who would be great additions to the program, especially working scientists, professionals in non-publishing fields, and members of minority groups. And if you saw someone on a panel in 2012 and thought they weren't quite up to our standards, let us know that too. All comments are seen only by the program chair and assistant chair, and will be kept entirely confidential.

The address for program ideas--open all year round--is Bring it on.
rosefox: The Readercon logo flipped to read R F. (readercon)
[personal profile] rosefox
The brand new Readercon website has been launched, with the same familiar URL but a great new design:

Our webmaster, David Shaw, redesigned the site to use adaptive design, which means it will look great on any device: desktop, laptop, tablet, even your phone. No separate mobile site needed. Check it out on every device you have!

The site has also been updated with all the information about Readercon 24. We're delighted to announce that GOHs Maureen F. McHugh and Patricia A. McKillip will be "joined" by memorial GOH Roger Zelazny. Our registration rate structure now has three simple tiers: now through mid-February (until Boskone, for those of you in the Boston area), mid-February to mid-June, and at the door. You can also find this year's hotel rates, a fully updated list of board and committee members, and everything else you need to know about the upcoming Readercon.

We'd love to know more about who's coming to Readercon in 2013. Are you a regular coming back, a first-timer, or a long-ago attendee wondering how it's changed? Are you interested in being on the program or running a table in the Bookshop? Will you be on your own, having a romantic book-filled long weekend with your literary-minded SO, or dragging all your friends along? Why are you interested in attending Readercon? Leave a comment and let us know!
rosefox: The Readercon logo flipped to read R F. (readercon)
[personal profile] rosefox
July 27, 2012

We want to thank everyone who came forward - both in person and via email - to report a harassment incident at Readercon 23. We followed up those reports with interviews with the target of the harassment, various witnesses, and Rene Walling, the harasser. The information we collected and reviewed was consistent, consequently, we feel the facts of the incident are not in dispute.

When we wrote our zero-tolerance policy in 2008 (in response to a previous incident), we were operating under the assumption that violators were either intent on their specific behaviors, clueless, or both.

During the course of our conversation with Rene it became immediately apparent that he realized what he had done and was sincerely regretful of his actions. It was that recognition and regret that influenced our decision, not his status in the community. If, as a community, we wish to educate others about harassment, we must also allow for the possibility of reform.

Our decision was suspension of his membership for at least two years. In the three years between Readercons 23 and 26 we will actively look for evidence of real and permanent positive change in his behavior. It was made very clear to him that if we receive any substantiated reports of continued inappropriate behavior at any venue - during or after the suspension period - his suspension will become permanent.

Should any other incidents occur, we encourage witnesses to report them to us at

We want to reaffirm our continued support for all members of the community who are the targets of harassment, and our continued determination to make Readercon a safer space.

Bob Colby, Merryl Gross, B. Diane Martin, David G. Shaw, Eric M. Van

Readercon Board of Directors

(reposted from this LiveJournal entry)

EDIT: Please read the Readercon convention committee's statement on recent events:
rosefox: The Readercon logo flipped to read R F. (readercon)
[personal profile] rosefox
Interested in being on Readercon's program? Know someone we should invite? Tell us! We're accepting applications and suggestions for Readercon 24, now through December 1.

Your email should include:

* Why the person you're suggesting would be a good program participant for Readercon (which includes good panel behavior as well as relevant knowledge).
* Why the person is uniquely interesting and awesome.
* What sorts of program items they'd be good on. (Feel free to use specific examples: "When I was at the discussion of Mary Shelley's Frankenstein, I found myself really missing my friend the Shelley scholar...")

Your email might also include:

* A brief (brief!) paragraph of relevant background information.
* Links to things the person has written.
* A pitch for a talk, discussion, event, or other program item.

Really don't bother with:

* A full CV, resume, or biography.
* Anything that looks like a form letter. (Yes, this happens.)
* Offers to bribe us, even in jest.

We explicitly encourage applications from and recommendations of women, QUILT*BAG folks, people of color, people with disabilities, and other members of minority groups. Diverse voices make for better conversations.

Send your applications and recommendations to Thanks for helping us to make Readercon even better!
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