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This blog belongs to:

Dj Connell
Chair, Great Discworld Gathering at Sasquan 2015,
More info at www.sasquan.org
Founder, Discworld Seamstress Guild of North America, Established 2003
Trouble Made: By Appointment
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@ItBodes on Twitter

These are my opinions and mine alone.

This image of Death is by artist Paul Kidby. Mr Kidby's images are used with his permission. Copyright: Paul Kidby.

Monday, April 14, 2014

Announcing the Dates and Location for the North American Discworld Gathering in 2015

The world is made up of four elements: Earth, Air, Fire and Water. This is a fact well known even to Corporal Nobbs. It's also wrong. There's a fifth element, and generally it's called Surprise.
-- Terry Pratchett, The Truth


Ladies and Gentlemen,


There are two things you need to know before we announce the location of the 2015 North American Discworld Gathering:


#1 Sir Terry Pratchett is not able to be with us in person this time, as much as he might like to. Terry and Rob's international travel schedule has changed substantially, and he is focused on his writing, and on forthcoming projects.

Your best chance of seeing Sir Terry in person is to attend the International Discworld Convention in 2014 in Manchester, England, August 8-11, 2014. 

Update 7/4/2014  Sadly, Sir Terry has just announced that he cannot now attend the UK con. 


#2  There is no seed money available to help fund another NADWCon.  As some of you know, NADWCon 2011 did not make a profit, and it appears that NADWCon 2013 did not, either. 

A number of people worked very hard on those last two NADWCons.  Those of you who have served in the convention trenches will know how hard it is to put on a good, 1,000 person event, let alone one that makes any money.

Many of the fans who’ve been volunteering at NADWCon from the very beginning had imagined that each NADWCon would help construct a solid foundation which would, in turn, support future cons, but things don't always work out as well as we could wish.  (1) 

Given this news I've just shared, the 2014/2015 team knew that producing another NADWCon in 2015 was going to be a challenge.  So, here is where things stand today:


Drum Roll Please .....   
  
Many of you guessed right: Seattle was the chosen venue.  (Note the past tense).     

and...

We've been discussing dates for this event that ranged from late summer to early fall because we did not wish to compete with our friends at Norwescon; a fantasy and science fiction convention that takes place in Seattle every Spring.  

Then this happened .... 

Oh, look! Is that a Quantum Butterfly?

An experienced, fun-loving, and collaborative core group of volunteers was deeply engaged in planning when WorldCon, Inc. announced that Spokane, WA had won the 2015 bid for the World Science Fiction and Fantasy Convention.  This meant that most of the talent and volunteers on the west coast would now focus their time, resources and attention on that event.  Add to this the fact that many of our NADWCon attendees also go to Worldcon; we cannot ask them to fly out to the same location twice in one year.  

In light of these circumstances we have decided not to hold a NADWCon but to hold A Great Discworld Gathering at WorldCon in 2015This WorldCon's official name is Sasquan.  

Sasquan will take place in Spokane, WA on August 19th - 23rd in 2015. 

They know we're coming:

The Planning Committee is in touch with the organizers of Sasquan.  Our job now is to support this large, international convention, and make sure that our Discworld friends have fun while they're there. Our first question to Sasquan was,
"How can we help?".

The North American Discworld Guilds
are on board, including the Seamstress Guild (extroverted, costume loving party givers) led by their talented Director Missy Hayes. (2)  Also with us are the the Dark Clerks (highly organized folks who like to run things backstage), the Printers and Engravers (writers and editors), the Cunning Artificers (arts and crafts), along with musicians, various family groups, and other North American guilds to be named later.

We're planning the Seamstress Guild parties (oh, those parties!), and - pending Sasquan’s approval, where needed - various Discworld meets, panels, classes, arts and crafts, pub crawls, kids events, and lots of fun across this great con for all our Discworld friends.  


In a way, this will be like leaving little Lancre to visit Ankh Morpork.  You might want to bring The Luggage. 

You can buy your membership to
Sasquan, at their 2015 WorldCon website:


PLEASE NOTE: 
* Sasquan attendees can't book hotel rooms for this con until late summer or early fall of 2014.  (See the Sasquan website for details)
* More information about our Discworld events at Sasquan will be forthcoming at our website (nadwcon.org), through social media, and via a newsletter.


That’s all, folks. You now have over fifteen months to make your arrangements.  (3)  We're going to have a great time. We hope you can join us.


The 2015 Planning Committee


Endnotes:


(1) NADWCon 2009 (the very first NADWCon) was well organized, well attended, great fun, and nicely profitable.  The majority of those profits (money raised through ticket and merchandise sales, not including the funds raised for Terry's two charities) were kept by our Arizona hosts, Leprecon, Inc.  We understand that some seed money was given to one of the NADWCon co-founders, and we believe that she made these funds available to NADWCon 2011 (for which she served as a senior staff member).


(2) The North American Seamstress Guild was initially founded by Yours Truly in 2001 to create and host a party for Terry at ConJose, a Northern California-based WorldCon, where he was an Honored Guest. We produced this event with the kind support of that con's chair, who is also a friend of Terry's.


Later on, at Terry's request, and with the support of the two ladies who founded NADWCon, and much invaluable help from our fabulous guild members, we designed, organized and hosted the Opening Night Gala for Terry and 600 of our friends at the first NADWCon in 2009.


I asked Missy Hayes to serve as the guild's Director in 2010, and she has proved to be an outstanding leader and manager.  Under her direction the Seamstress Guild threw marvelous parties every night at NADWCon 2011, and they provided over 75% of the volunteers for NADWCon in 2013.


(3) Costumers: On Your Mark. Get Set. Sew! 

Art: Magnus & Loki by Sarah Clemens, ClemensArt.com

3 comments:

  1. A difficult situation well-handled. Huzzah!

    ReplyDelete
  2. I have no idea why you're using my art for this blog when you could be using something Discworld related that would have more relevance. (?) --Sarah Clemens

    ReplyDelete
  3. A couple of points in regards to this.

    1. The original plan for the 2009 North American Discworld Convention was a one off. All things that happened afterwards were done by people who worked on the convention, but the ongoing oversight organization was formed without any involvement from Leprecon, Inc or the chair of the first convention and we were not asked.

    2. The Chariman of the Board of Leprecon, Inc.now and at the time of the 2009 convention is one of the vice-chairs of Sasquan. I am no longer involved with Leprecon, Inc. and will no longer be a member following this year's LepreCon.

    Lee Whiteside
    Chariman, 2009 North American Discworld Convention

    ReplyDelete