The WSFA Journal

The Official Newsletter of the Washington Science Fiction Association -- ISSN 0894-5411

Edited by Samuel Lubell

Can Liquid Nitrogen Ice Cream Get WSFA Off Its Butt?
WSFA And Bucconeer:  The Secret Revealed
A Real "Con" Job
Next Stop, Twilight Zone?
WSFA To Pay for Wedding?
Letter from Yugoslavia
Joe Mayhew, Nicki & Richard Lynch Win Hugos
Children's Books
the Spammish Say-Nada

Can Liquid Nitrogen Ice Cream Get WSFA Off Its Butt?

The July 3rd meeting met at the Gillilands.  "We might as well start a meeting, it's 9:15 by my watch." said the Prez.  After Sam reviewed the minutes the treasurer was asked, "Do we have any money" to which he replied "Money, what is that?"  Upon being informed what the green pieces of paper were, he reported $6,847.45."  "Tell them about your trip round the world."  "I have another source for that."

            Joe, acting in his formal capacity as Disclave '98 said "I have a check for Sam Pierce.  I am waiting for the last bank statement.  They may have billed us twice."  Neither DisNext nor Dis2000 was present.  The Entertainment committee arranged for fireworks tomorrow (on the fourth).  No trustee was present.

            There was some confusion over which month we were swapping meeting locations followed by confusion over the web page not having the information.  John Pomeranz said the can't understand why the page didn't update itself.  John promised to do it, by hand if need be. He has a fine events calendar (provided by The WSFA Journal).  Lee Gilliland asked about the committee to spend a great deal of money.  John invited everyone to his party for liquid nitrogen ice cream  "It'll blast you off into orbit.".  Protests that this was the same time as a crucial Bucconeer meeting were meet with "I've had a Fourth of July party longer than Bucconeer."

            Joe made a request for WSFA photos for Evan Phillips to scan.  "How old do they need to be?" "The older the better.  I got some from Lance and Mike Nelson.  I'm trying for photos of WSFAns and WSFA activities."  "What's your name again?" "Ted White" replied Joe pseudonymily.

            Elspeth introduced her "on-going project to get WSFA off its butts." <but... but...>.  She turned it over to Eric who kindly volunteered to run the table at Bucconeer.  Perrianne had promised to find out about tables and tell Sam Lubell.  "She didn't"  Elspeth passed out index cards for positive comments about Bucconeer.  She got three back.  "Three back wow," the club was impressed as various WSFAns made excuses for not spending two minutes filling out a card.  "It would be nice to have an idea about what to do if and when we have a Disclave."  She turned the discussion over to Eric.  "Huh, am I supposed to do something now?"   Judy suggested that he "go around and get people to sign up."

            There will be a fifth Friday at the Fabulous Bungalow. "We'll use up the leftovers from the fourth of July party.  I encourage those of you who aren't working on Bucky to come so that I have someone else to talk to since I'll have done everything I can do."

            There was no new business.  Announcements included The Gillilands finding a Watch.  Terry Pratchett will be given an Order of the British Empire.  <Probably something like `I order you to say something funny.'>  Roger MacBride Allen will be doing an event at the Library of Congress."


WSFA And Bucconeer:  The Secret Connection Revealed

Most of the members of WSFA were too busy running the convention to actually see it.  For the official record, Bucconeer was chaired by WSFAn Peggy Rae Pavlat with WSFA President Judith Kendell as Chairman's Staff.  The Chief Financial Officer was WSFA Treasurer Robert MacIntosh, Disclave '99 Chair Sam Pierce was the Procurement Chief. WSFA former trustee Mike Nelson was the Managing Editor of Pre-Con Publications. WSFAn Candy Myers was mail room coordinator.  WSFAn Richard Lynch was the Managing editor of the Souvenir Book.  Steven desJardins was keeper of  the Committee List and Committee Newsletter, Joe Hall facilitated the Manager's workshop, Bill Mayhew was the Explainer.  Lance Oszko helped with Office Equipment.  John Sapienza was Agent in Chief (or chief of Agents) as well as Deputy Manager of Facilities Division, Bernard Bell was Database Guru. Former WSFA Prez John Pomeranz was Manager of the Programming Division with Perrianne Lurie as Deputy manager. Disclave 2000's Covert Beach did the Pocket Program.  The Zipsers were Deputy Program Databasers as well as green room managers.  Covert Beach did the pocket program. Kathi Overton was the Video Production Crew Chief.  Colleen Stumbaugh was Con Suite Manager.  Bill Jensen was Pre-Con Registration manager.  Chuck Divine managed the Computer Art Display and Fantasy Photo Exhibit.  Sec. Samuel Lubell was manager of the public relations division.  The Student Writing Contest was managed by Mary Bentley. And I am sure I left out lots of people.  If so send in your names and I'll issue a correction.


Thank you for all your hard work.


A Real "Con" Job


Anyway, since I missed seeing most of the convention, the following report is based on rumor, hear-say, the hoaxzine, and second-hand reports, with a little bit of extrapolation as glue.

Sailing a life-sized pirate ship down the Baltimore Harbor and into the convention center certainly made for a smashing (literally) opening ceremonies that left quite an impression on the audience (and on the convention center's walls).  Fortunately, management of the CC told us they had always wanted an opening facing the harbor (and for the rest of the convention we could get anything we wanted by walking up to management and saying, `such a nice convention center. Be a shame if anything ELSE happened to it.)   Everyone was quite understanding that Babylon 5's JMS couldn't make it because he was kidnapped by the Shadows.  Our replacement special guest, producer Harve Bennett didn't have quite the same fan base but everyone was happy we found someone to fill in on such short notice, even if it wasn't someone from our A-list (or B or C-list for that matter.) 

The panels all went well, especially once we decided that there wasn't enough space in the convention center rooms and began commandeering rooms throughout Baltimore.  The panels about the politics of space that took place in the mayor's office went especially well and observers tell me that some of the politicians stopped trying to do business and took careful notes.  Panelists on the alien life forms panel made use of the life forms in the aquarium.  High points were the spoilers panels that told the complete plots of upcoming movies and television series.  The Tor Books preview handed out copies of their 1000+ page hardback anthology, Legends, and then placed enough copies at the freebie table for everyone at the convention.

Coffee-klatches were soon modified after organizers learned no one wanted to see authors who had had too much caffeine.  Fans found the wine-cooler-klatches to be more mellow. The masquerade benefited from the clothing optional rule as well as the pirate tradition of impressment- shanghaing people off the floor of the convention, thrusting them into costume, and then parading the conquests around.  The art show departed from the usual science fiction theme by showing art that had been pirated from around the world.  Letters of protest from museums were posted near the entranceway as trophies.  The carnival games booth outside the convention station, including a dunking booth for representatives from Biospherics, was a lot of fun, even if all lawyers had to be officially blindfolded to walk by that area.  Who was the women yelling something about insurance?

Voting for site selection for the 2001 Worldcon departed from the usual system of using ballots and instead suggest no-holds barred wrestling with the last man standing to cast the deciding vote.  While this upped the violence level considerably, the theory was that this would leave supporters of both sides too exhausted to protest.  In fact this worked so well that some Chicago organizers talked about adapting the system for the Hugos.

Speaking of the Hugos, this part of the convention went smoothly too, once we realized the presence of two nearby stadiums meant we could hold a Hugo winners and Hugo losers party simultaneously.  Winners were surprised to learn that, since we took our base from a ship, this is the first floatable Hugo, which was a pleasant bonus for winners from flood-prone regions (and for Disclave attendees.) 

Parties in general were well attended (except for the Democratic and Republican parties which were simply well intended.)  The best parties, or at least the most popular, were those held in the hotel lobbies near the elevators.  People waited in line for hours to get into these.

Singing Kumbaya and Leaving on a Jet Plane at the closing ceremonies, around a big campfire (by this time all CC employees had been driven insane so no one protested), was considered sentimental but sappy.  This mood changed once the pirate invasion "recruited" attendees to bury their plunder, which turned out to be everything that hadn't sold in the dealer's room.  Attendees of the closing ceremonies were allowed to take stuff home, with the "promise" to bury it somewhere. 

So this was Bucconeer, a Worldcon to treasure.  And if anyone has their own take on what happened that might differ slightly from the above, send it to the WSFA Journal and I'll print it.


The Washington Post's View

Next Stop, Twilight Zone? Science Fiction Fans Gather to Ponder A Future They Hope Isn't All in the Past


By David Streitfeld Washington Post Staff Writer Monday, August 10, 1998; Page D01


BALTIMORE-Do apes have souls?

It's a question Connie Willis wonders about, but that she can't bring up with the other members of her church choir. They'd look at her funny. Which is reason enough for her to travel two thousand miles and spend five days here, discussing any and all topics at the 56th World Science Fiction Convention.

Did Shakespeare have a hand in the King James Bible?

That's something else Willis can't debate with the neighbors back in Greeley, Colo. But at science fiction conventions, "I've never heard anyone respond, 'Why on Earth would anyone be interested in that?' They may have some bizarre theory that aliens wrote the King James Bible, but they're interested. Science fiction readers are always interested in everything."

And they're interested in talking about it. Until late yesterday afternoon, by which point everyone's jaw had stopped functioning, writers chatted with readers, editors, fans, critics. The schedule of panels and events, printed out from the convention Web site, fills 85 pages. Millions of words were produced and consumed by the 5,000 attendees, some of whom felt inspired to show up in costume, including the obligatory characters from "Star Wars."

Is science fiction dying?

That's one of the few questions that Willis doesn't wonder about. "People have been talking about the death of science fiction since I got into the field," back in the mid-'70s, she said.

But the question was hard to escape here. Science fiction has always been highly self-conscious and self-critical, but surely none of the 55 previous world conventions had this level of morbidity.

One of the very first panels was about whether the big convention was becoming a thing of the past, given the decreasing number of young fans and the balkanization of the science fiction community. This was followed by a panel about how science fiction had taken over movies and television and lost its soul in the process.

Science fiction, said moderator George R.R. Martin, used to live "in the corner of our popular culture. My father called it 'that crazy stuff.' . . . The whole culture looked on it that way."

Now, the novelist noted, every cable system carries the Sci-Fi Channel. Movies about huge asteroids hitting the Earth are routine. Commercials use outer space motifs. From "The X-Files" to "The Truman Show," Hollywood loves science fictional motifs. And a walk through Toys R Us quickly demonstrates that science fiction toys have seemingly taken over the business.

And yet. "Written science fiction is struggling. . . . Writers can hardly make a living," Martin said. No science fiction writer regularly makes the bestseller lists for original work. Many of the best writers in the field are having a hard time even getting published. Meanwhile, there's a huge tide of printed sludge tied in to movies and TV shows.

For Martin, Willis and most of the others here, books still possess a holy power they're losing elsewhere in the culture. Novels, Willis said, are the key to a civilization: "When we meet the aliens, the first thing they'll want to do is read our books."

Oh, great. It'll probably be an insipid "Star Wars" novel. If the aliens have any sense at all, they'll go straight home.


A Small Circle of Friends

When the first science fiction conventions were held a half century ago, they quickly became a way for the cult to perpetuate itself. If you wanted to read certain key stories or novels, you couldn't find them anywhere but at a con. And if you wanted to meet people who had read the same stories you did, you had to come.

To a certain extent, the Baltimore convention continued to perform this function. The smallest organized gatherings were called kaffeeklatsches, where up to 10 people could sign up to sit around a round table and drink coffee with their favorite writer.

So it came to pass that a group of seven admirers of Barry M. Malzberg gathered together. This was a good showing, considering Malzberg has been largely inactive for about 15 years. In the early '70s, however, he was a key writer, producing countless stories and novels on certain obsessive themes: the assassination of John F. Kennedy, the misguided space program, the impossibility of turning science fiction into literature.

It was a convivial group, these six men of varying ages and one older woman. Everyone liked each other immediately, and they dubbed themselves the Church of Malzberg. There was just one problem: Malzberg himself never showed up. The strange and wonderful thing is, that turned out not to matter much.

Sure there was disappointment, but no anger. The acolytes spent the hour discussing Malzberg's works, turned to a spirited debate about the merits of another writer, Mike Resnick, and whether big conventions are better than little conventions.

For a really small convention, someone suggested, how about one in honor of Malzberg himself? Call it AngstCon. The only movie that would be shown was the Zapruder film, of course; if anyone had sex at the con, it would be bleak, disappointing, unfulfilling sex, just like in a Malzberg book.

As the hour drew to a close, one of the fans said, "Let's hope Barry recovers from whatever kept him away," a sentiment the others echoed. Then, having come together for only one hour, the seven-person Church of Malzberg disbanded, probably never to meet again.


Confirmation Proceedings

"I hate adulation," Joe Haldeman was saying. "It's embarrassing. I'd rather my readers admired me from a distance."

Boy, was he in the wrong place. Yonder was Camden Yards. If they announced Haldeman's name during a game, no one would look up. But in the small, self-selected universe of science fiction, he couldn't walk five feet without being stopped by an admirer.

If any outsider were to stumble in to the Baltimore Convention Center and needed proof, he could look at Haldeman's chest. There, like all his fellow con-goers, he wore an admission badge, but whereas most said simply "Member," Haldeman's was festooned with ribbons that reached nearly to his waist.

"Past Hugo Winner," said one, meaning he had won the field's highest award (in Haldeman's case, a couple of times). "Hugo Nominee," meaning he was up for another one here. "Program Participant," which meant he was on numerous panels. "Past GOH," meaning he was guest of honor at a previous convention.

Like Connie Willis, whose 1992 time-travel novel, "Doomsday Book" won both plaudits and many readers, Haldeman is one of the more esteemed writers in the field. His first novel, "The Forever War," appeared in 1975 to widespread acclaim, winning the top awards and becoming a classic -- a story about a stupid, bloody war being fought against aliens from the constellation Taurus.

Haldeman set it in the future, which is already our past: The novel begins in 1997. But like most science fiction, it wasn't really about the future. It was about the present, in particular Vietnam. Despite being science fiction, "The Forever War" is considered one of the best Vietnam novels and has sold hundreds of thousands of copies in paperback.

Haldeman's instinct is to reject the current arguments about the death of the field. "They were talking about the death of science fiction back in the '40s. It's our version of mainstream literature's claims about the death of the novel. But novels continue to be written, and so does science fiction."

Still, he knows where to assign blame. "George Lucas, without any malice at all, destroyed traditional science fiction by turning it into something else. 'Star Wars' was a wonderful movie, but it's not science fiction. It's fantasy. There's no science, no extrapolation in it. Yet it changed the perception of the average reader as to what science fiction is."

Accordingly, the life of even a successful writer of traditional science fiction is an uneasy one. "The worst written 'Star Trek' novel is going to make more money for a publisher than a book I spend two years on," the 55-year-old Haldeman said. "Publishers say the movie and television tie-ins keep science fiction profitable, so they can afford a few luxuries like me."

All the more reason for Haldeman to go, however unwillingly, to conventions -- about 10 a year. "I meet my editors so I can keep visible, so I'm always a person, not just a voice on the phone or the name on a contract."

He was up for a Hugo award for his novel "Forever Peace," a kind of thematic sequel to "The Forever War." He felt uneasy about wanting it. "I've won the award. I've had a lifetime's worth of approval. I don't need more. Yet here I am, worrying, wondering whether I'm going to win it or not. I guess it's about confirmation, that I'm still in the game, still a writer to contend with."

It seems he is. Twenty-two years after he won the award for "The Forever War," he won it again Friday night. At the ceremonies, he choked up a bit, and then said in another 22 years he planned to make a photocopy of the classic romance "Forever Amber" and see if he could win with that.


Fanning Out

Asking the single question that writers most dread hearing, a fan inquired of a group of novelists: "Can you read my manuscript and give me some tips because I don't want to get a real job?"

Connie Willis didn't pause at all before responding: "Yes, I will."

It was a lie, of course, but then Willis was expected to lie. One function of the convention is to put the writers through their paces, to show their fans how they react while under pressure and reveal something of their personalities. This was the function of the Liars' Panel, which was held in a room so crowded it was doubtless in violation of the fire code.

"I'm Monica Lewinsky," said Willis in introducing herself. "I would like to explain to you why I kept the dress, but unfortunately I have not been able to come up with a single good reason."

The crowd roared. One woman in the front row, with a button on her backpack that proclaimed, "If It Harms None, Do What Thou Will," took off her shoes and socks and delightedly wiggled her toes.

Many of the subsequent jokes are unprintable and much of the rest is so rooted in the field that they're impossible to explain, but generally the panel bears out Willis's contention that "science fiction people are the funniest in the world. You know the way Steve Martin says in 'Roxanne,' 'We don't do irony here. We smoke dope while skiing topless, we just don't do irony'? They do irony here. And wit."

And really bad puns. Another panel, "I Can Explain That," forced five authors to come up with rapid explanations for science fiction clichés. How, someone shouted, does an anti-gravity machine work?

"If you're careful with it," answered Jack McDevitt, "it will never let you down."

If the universe is so vast and full of miraculous things, why would aliens bother to come all the way here?

Charles Sheffield took that one. "Actually, they go everywhere. But we only notice them when they come here."

All of this performing has unexpected feedback for the writers. Says Willis: "I've never ever done a reading or a panel and had someone not come up to me and say, 'I've never heard of you, but now that I saw you, I'm going to go buy one.' "

Usually, the place they start is "Doomsday Book," a long novel about a time-traveling historian who gets caught up in a plague during the English Middle Ages. It is so well researched and compelling that it won widespread praise not only inside but outside the field.

The 52-year-old Willis has written about a dozen other books, most recently "To Say Nothing of the Dog," a science fiction novel masquerading as a Victorian epic. On Friday afternoon, she patiently signed copies of her books for all comers, just as dozens of other writers did during the course of the convention. And not just books but T-shirts, encyclopedias opened to the appropriate entry, autograph books and convention programs.

"I'm worried," said horror writer Edward Bryant, patiently scribbling his name, "that as soon as I sign the last unsigned copy of my books, I'll die."


When Minds Collide

If good written science fiction is threatening to become an extinct form, up there on the shelf with the sonnet and the villanelle and the epistolary novel, no one at this gab fest came up with any sure-fire ways to prevent it.

David Brin, best known as the author of the novel "The Postman" -- most recently a widely vilified Kevin Costner bomb -- is trying harder than most. He wants new blood in the field, and appeared on several panels debating how to get teenagers hooked on classic works like Robert Heinlein's young-adult tales "Citizen of the Galaxy" and "Farmer in the Sky."

"Think of what it would take to figuratively stand outside the schoolyard in a trench coat, open it up and say, 'A little Heinlein, girl? The first one's free,' " Brin said, adding: "We are a cult. Why aren't we proselytizing?"

Never mind that a basic credo of science fiction is an open-minded, live-and-let-live policy. "We have to go forth and crush every world view that doesn't believe in tolerance and free speech," Brin exclaimed.

Gordon Van Gelder, the editor of the Magazine of Fantasy and Science Fiction, had a more cautionary view. "You once had to come to a convention to find the old books. Now you can get them on the Internet. Some of the other things people got out of science fiction fandom, like the sense of community, they can get off the Internet as well. Science fiction used to be arcane, and nothing is arcane anymore."

These folks will never have a meeting of minds -- which might be a good sign.

"It isn't until you get a consensus of what can and cannot be done that something begins to die," said novelist Michael Swanwick. "This crowd cannot agree on anything. It's anarchy -- which is a productive environment for art."


WSFA To Pay for Wedding?


7/17 at the Ginters. "I guess we'll have a meeting now," Prez Judy said tentatively at 9:17.  "Do we have any money?"  "It's getting smaller," said the treasurer.  "$6,745.14" Bob said.  Calls for Party Party were met with a Maybe Maybe.

DisPast (Joe) was hoping Sam Pierce will be here so he could get the dregs. Two of three outstanding checks returned.  Third is Peter heck so should just write a new one.  Joe offered advice to future con chairs, "Don't listen to anything I say."  He then told a story about drunk boy scouts.  Sam Pierce was not here because he is going to Australia, "He's going in the wrong year!" DisFadingMemory (Mike Nelson) said that the flooding of the hotel was a plot to be a convention guest on the Hotel Horror Stories panel.  Elspeth reported that the Internet is debating whether there really was a SWAT team at Disclave.  People don't believe that Ben Yallow knew what he was talking about.  Disclave Far Future had nothing to say. 

The Entertainment committee is disappointed in the Supreme Court for upholding Ken Starr.  Baby fan Theodore Russell Baker is almost three months old.  The trustees reported that Chuck has a red dress for the red dress run.  Elspeth asked how that was relevant to the meeting. 

Elspeth brought up her ongoing project on Disclave.  Almost a month and a half ago she passed out index cards for people to write good stuff on front and bad stuff at back.  Having handed out two sets (not out of the WSFA budget), she has got seven back.  Bob Mac has got his hand.  "But your president has not," confessed Judy.  "Wait until after Bucconeer."

Eric said, "I emailed who I thought was the right person for tables."

Perrianne said, "I posted Mary Kay and we have a table."

Eric continued.  "We want to have two people during most of the convention between 10 and five or six. We want two people, an experienced person and a not so experienced person.  We don't want anyone working more than four hours.  We don't want anyone working at bucky to do more than one hour.  I have a sign up sheet."

Judy will be featured in the local fan club panel at Bucconeer.  WSFA has an ad in the program book.  "It would be nice to have a brochure or something." Said Judy. 

John replied.  "We have a web page.  If we have a computer we could put the web site there.  We could have Journals and cards and maps to the meetings if people don't object."  "Fine," said Alexis.  "When we were in the post, I got two calls." 

Joe asked "How could we fit more people, I hope we get the cream of the crop."

Elspeth said "We should have books by our GoH."  Judy said "Mike Walsh has the WSFA press books.  I have some copies of Disclave program books." Elspeth said, "If people have stuff that is WSFA related.  I'm certain Eric can cull stuff and rotate." 

Sam Lubell said "We should check with Sam Pierce because he promised information by Bucconeer."  There was some discussion over whether Sam Pierce was fleeing the country or not. Covert confessed to having some discussion with the New Carrollton site.  Elspeth said, "Sam has the best of intentions but may not have the time." Covert said "I haven't heard."

Elspeth asked "Who is going to Bucconeer?"  All but three hands went up.  "This is your labor pool. Can we lock the doors."  But then John asked, "Who does not yet have a job at Bucconeer?" Only eight hands were left.  "I hope everyone signs up even if they don't have a job." 

Judy asked, "Are we all set for WSFA at Bucconeer?  Any other old business?"  NO!  "Any new business?"  NO!

Shayna announced she is getting married.  Her fiance is in the army but is trying to be transferred here.  "So you're saying we're not losing a daughter, we're gaining a son." Said Dick.  "Does this mean you're paying for the wedding," responded John.

Erica showed off the WSFA lost and found which included hats, sunglasses, and socks.  Elspeth's cat Morphis is sick. Joe was at Readercon.  Harlan Ellison will be GOH next year on condition that Gregory Feeley not attend. 

Chuck Divine announced a party August 22nd with beer, chicken, hot dogs.  If you want something healthy like a salad, bring it yourself.  (See his handout)

80 crab feast tickets left.  Get them fast.  "Is this an example of the hard shell?"

Tuesday August 4th CJ Cherryh will be guest at the Library of Congress.

Covert announced he was getting away from being wrapped up in Bucconeer to go to the Virginia Scottish games.

The meeting was adjourned at 9:53.


Letter from Yugoslavia:

Dear friends,


We are from Yugoslavia.  That is a small country (probably known to you as Serbia and Montenegro) which lays in the SouthEast Europe.  The capital of our country is Belgrade and our little town Bela Crkva (14,000 inhabitants), is 100 km (60 miles) east from Belgrade.

Two years ago, about 30 of us formed a science fiction fan club and we named it `FAROS'.  At the moment there are only four SF clubs in our country and our club is the most active one.  Our activities are publishing our magazine, organizing literary evenings and lectures, SF movie projections, and discussions about all SF areas.  We are keeping meetings to once a week (every Tuesday).

Our friend from Melbourne gave your address to us, that he got on the Internet.  That is the way we found out your name, postal and Internet address and the name of your magazine.  We are contacting you and we want to find out more about you because of our wish to make contact with people who have interests in science fiction and who organised clubs like ours.  For the beginning we would like you to contact us with more information about the work of your club and in which direction SF is going in USA.  Later on we would like to make stronger cooperation, to contact more often and to exchange new information with you.

For the beginning, we would like to know if your magazine is in printed or in electronic form.  Could you mail or e-mail it to us?  We will gladly answer all your questions about our club work and we are ready to mail you our magazine if you are interested, of course (we have published six numbers, so far). 

Our contact addresses are:  Post: FAROS,  1 oktobra 24,  26340 Bela Crkva, Yugoslavia.


Until the next contact, lots of regard from Bela Crkva.

Signed, the club president  Srdan Stankovic.   The Editor-in-Chief of the magazine Zdenko Zak.



Joe Mayhew, Nicki & Richard Lynch Win Hugos


Bucconeer, the 56th World Science Fiction Convention, presented the 1998 Hugo Awards and John W. Campbell Award at a ceremony in Baltimore, Maryland, on Friday, August 7th, 1998.


BEST NOVEL: Forever Peace by Joe Haldeman (Ace)


BEST NOVELLA: "...Where Angels Fear To Tread" by Allen Steele (Asimov's October-November 1997)


BEST NOVELETTE: "We Will Drink A Fish Together... " by Bill Johnson (Asimov's May 1997)


BEST SHORT STORY: "The 43 Antarean Dynasties " by Mike Resnick (Asimov's December 1997)


BEST RELATED BOOK: The Encyclopedia of Fantasy edited by John Clute & John Grant (Orbit, St. Martin's Press)


BEST DRAMATIC PRESENTATION: Contact (Warner Bros. /South Side Amusement Company) Directed by Robert Zemeckis, Story by Carl Sagan and Ann Druyan Screenplay by James V. Hart and Michael Goldenberg; Steve Starkey and Robert Zemeckis, Producers.


BEST PROFESSIONAL EDITOR: Gardner Dozois (Asimov's)




BEST SEMIPROZINE: Locus edited by Charles N. Brown


BEST FANZINE: Mimosa edited by Nicki & Richard Lynch


BEST FAN WRITER: Dave Langford




JOHN W. CAMPBELL AWARD for BEST NEW WRITER of 1996 or 1997 (Sponsored by Dell Magazines]:

Mary Doria Russell


Completed ballots (769 total) were received from the US, the UK, Canada, the Netherlands. Germany, Qatar, Australia, New Zealand, Spain, France and several other countries. 



Children's Books They'll Never Publish


You Were an Accident (Jean Sorensen, Herndon; Barry Blyveis, Columbia)

Strangers Have the Best Candy (Stephen Dudzik, Silver Spring)

The Little Sissy Who Snitched (Tom Witte, Gaithersburg)

Some Kittens Can Fly! (David Genser, Arlington)

The Protocols of the Grandpas of Zion (David Genser, Arlington)

How to Dress Sexy for Grownups  (Stephen Dudzik, Silver Spring)

Getting More Chocolate on Your Face (Thomas Drucker, Carlisle, Pa.)

Where Would You Like to Be Buried?  (Barry Blyveis, Columbia)

Where's Godot? (Jonathan Paul, Garrett Park)

Katy Was So Bad Her Mom Stopped Loving Her (David Genser, Arlington)

The Attention Deficit Disorder Association's Book of Wild Animals of North Amer... Hey! Let's Go Ride Our Bikes! (Meg Sullivan,Potomac)

All Dogs Go to Hell  (Joseph Romm, Washington)

The Kids' Guide to Hitchhiking  (Joseph Romm, Washington)

When Mommy and Daddy Don't Know the Answer They Say God Did It (Barry Blyveis, Columbia)

Garfield Gets Feline Leukemia  (John Kammer, Herndon)

What Is That Dog Doing to That Other Dog? (Kenneth Krattenmaker, Landover Hills)

Why Can't Mr. Fork and Ms. Electrical Outlet Be Friends? (Martin Keutel, Alexandria)

Bi-Curious George (Art Grinath, Takoma Park)

Daddy Drinks Because You Cry  (Stephen Dudzik, Silver Spring)

Mister Policeman Eats His Service Revolver (Russ Beland, Springfield)

You Are Different and That's Bad (Christopher Richard, Springfield)

the Spammish Say-Nada.

Bucconeer, the 56th Worldcon. Baltimore, Maryland.
Pirate Issue Sunday, August 9th, 1998.


Sunday Night Party List.

Holiday Inn
Check-Out Desk, 9pm
Concierge's Desk, 9pm

Convention Center
Load In-Out Dock, 3pm

Shadows Kidnap JMS.

Mr. Morden, spokesperson for the Shadows, announced that the shadowy group had kidnapped J. Michael Straczynski. "The pneumonia claim is just a ploy by the forces of light to gain time," Morden said. "We have JMS and we're not letting him go."

Asked to verify these claims, Ambassador Kosh said only, "He births legends."

Worldcon Is Never To End.

In a surprise move, the chair of BucConeer has canceled the closing ceremonies, clean-up, and move out. "Everyone is having so much fun that I can't bear to end this," said Peggy Rae. "So everyone will just have to stay in Baltimore and continue to party."

It is unclear as to whether this constitutes kidnapping since no one appears to be clamoring to leave. Of course this convention has a reputation for piracy anyway.

Baltimore Housing Bureau to Run U.S. Census.

In a surprise move, the Republicans and Democrats have settled their differences over the census by hiring Violent-Helix, a Baltimore organization previously responsible for booking hotel rooms for conventions, to conduct the nation's official count.

"Republicans wanted a smaller population count of the inner cities whose residents vote Democratic," said a census expert. "Democrats, of course wanted a statistical projection that would yield a higher count. Neither would agree on a system that would favor the rival party. But by hiring Violent-Helix, no one knows what number will come up and which party it will benefit."

Objections by statisticians and geographers that this method is guaranteed to produce an incorrect number fell on deaf ears.

Missing Mascots.

The debate between Bucky the Crab and his twin brother Yucky has been canceled. Neither has been seen since the crab feast.

Spelling War Erupts.

The long-simmering war between those who spell the convention's name Bucconeer, BucConeer, and BucCaNeer turned into a pitched battle yesterday as advocates of different spellings defaced posters put up by rival groups to "correct" their spelling. The Holiday Inn became a major battleground as adherents of different spellings tried to lure the Inn's signmakers, who had declared their neutrality by welcoming "Buccaneers" to Baltimore, to their side. Violence was adverted at the last minute only by agreeing to call the convention Constellation II. However, everyone then began feuding over the correct spelling of the Millenium or Millennium Philcon.

Mind-Body Swap?

Yesterday's Business Meeting of the World Science Fiction Society was temporarily disrupted when the chair of the meeting pulled out a guitar and began singing. Immediately all the other parliamentarians gathered their chairs in a circle and sang along. Simultaneously, in the filker area, the singing was halted for long discussion, following Robert's Rules of Order, as to whether or not traditional medieval ballads qualify as filk appropriate to a science fiction convention and, if so, in what year did popular music suddenly become inappropriate material.

"It was the strangest thing," said a noted filker. "I suddenly had the urge to stop doing what I came to this convention to do in order to make sure proper parliamentary procedure was followed."

"It was awful," confessed a frequent attendee of the business meeting. "I found myself singing all the verses to Banned from Argo. Normally, I don't even admit to knowing what the song is about."

Baltimore Hotels Report Room Surplus.

Baltimore hotel rooms throughout the city are empty. Maids are cleaning rooms that were not occupied and concierges have been placed on holiday. In an annual practice known in the hotel trade as "The August Idyl," hotels deliberately leave rooms empty.

"We didn't know anyone wanted the rooms," said hotel manager. "It is our traditional holiday."

In response to request by BucCONeer, the hotels have promised to release these extra rooms, starting at 10am on Monday.

Officious HOGU Results.

The following are the results of the 1998 HOGU contest. The DeRoach Award for Putridity in Everyday Life was won by Ken Starr. The Aristotle Award for Grand-Master Lifetime Achievement in Putridity was won by Arthur C. Clarke. The Best New feud was between Monica Lewinsky and her dry cleaners. The Best Traumatic Presentation was a double bill: The Big Lewinsky and The Devil in Paula Jones. Fandom's Biggest Turkey was Stu Hellinger. The Best Hoax Award was the Razzies. Daddy-O was the best typeface. Baptist Pronouncement on Women was the Best Religious Hoax. The Best Professional Hoax was won by the Church of Diana. The Worst Fanzine Title was Ansible. Best Dead Writer was Robert Jordan. Best Hoax Convention was Disclave. Best Pseudonym went to "Peggy Rae Pavlat". Best Has Been (Deposed Dictator's Award) was Rudy Giuliani. Most Desired Gafiation went to Godzilla. Best New Disease went to Leonardo di Cappuccino. The Banger Award was won by George Turner at AussieCon. The Traffic Jam, Jellies and Preserves Award went to the Stain on Monica's Dress. The Best Alien Music Video was Spice World. Best Mixed Media was Event Horizon. Close Encounter of the Fourth Kind was won by the Oral Orifice. The Cuisinart Award went to Armageddon. Special Grand Bastard Award was given to Robert Sacks. John Glenn was chosen as Space Geek Geezer of the Year. Most Bizarre Hall Costume went to the Pink Flamingo. And the Most Erotic Line from Star Trek was "Engage!"

Editor Fires Jordan (Almonds).

Scott Edelman would like it to be known that even though he was bested by Gardner Dozois for the Best Editor Hugo, he triumphed over the Hugo-winning editor in the "Firing Jordan Almonds Out of the Nose" competition. The contest was witnessed by fellow editor Ellen Datlow in the SFWA Suite late Friday Night. This shows what skill is needed to become a famous science fiction editor.

Correction Box.

The Spammish Say-Nada would like to make the following corrections. Site Selection was incorrect. The real host of Worldcon will be Hoboken, New Jersey. Also, there were a few errors in the Hugos. The true winner for Best Novel was The Cat in the Hat. Best Novella was Tina Brown's resignation letter from The New Yorker. Best Dramatic Presentation went the Babylon 5 Blooper Reel.