Category: Information

Geek Chic Fashion Show in DC to benefit Con or Bust

chicquarter I’m delighted to inform you all that on Saturday, June 21, 2014, at 7:00 p.m., Fantom Comics and PollySue’s Vintage Shop will be hosting a Geek Chic Fashion show at St. Stephen & the Incarnation Episcopal Church in Washington, DC! I take no credit for what should be an excellent evening: it is entirely the brainchild and effort of the organizers, whose are generously donating a proceed of the event tickets to Con or Bust.

According to the organizers, you are advised to expect “nerdy street style, casual cosplay, steampunk couture, Hogwarts riot grrls, high-fashion superheroes, tiny princess supervillains, Carol and Kamala Corps, and more!”

Tickets are $5. Check out the event’s Facebook page for more information. If you’d like to participate as a model (all shapes, creeds, sizes, ages, and ethnicities sought), stylist, makeup artist, costume designer, seamstress, or vendor, please contact hollimichele@gmail.com.

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Free con memberships: JOFcon, Chi-Fi, Norwescon, Loncon 3, and Sirens

Con or Bust currently has available free memberships to four SFF cons, first-come first-served, for fans of color/non-white fans.

  • JOFcon, March 28-30, 2014, Linthicum, MD (near BWI airport). JOFcon is a collaborative convention for those who are interested in learning about convention running, teaching about convention running, and talking about fannish conventions. JOFcon has donated two memberships to Con or Bust.
  • Chi-Fi, March 29, 2014, Chicago, IL. Chi-Fi is a new con that will be holding a one-day event in 2014; it is conveniently located off of public transit. Its current guest list can be found here. Chi-Fi has donated ten memberships to Con or Bust, of which nine are still available.
  • Norwescon, April 17-20, 2014, Seattle, WA, USA. Norwescon is the Pacific Northwest’s Premiere Science Fiction and Fantasy Convention and one of the largest regional Science Fiction and Fantasy conventions in the United States. Its Guests of Honor are: Writer: Michael Moorcock; Science: Catherine S. Plesko; Artist: Robert Gould; Costuming: Anima! X; Special: Seanan McGuire; Publisher: 47 North. Norwescon has donated two memberships to Con or Bust.
  • Loncon 3, August 14-18, 2014, London, England, UK. Loncon is the 2014 World Science Fiction Convention (Worldcon). Its Guests of Honor are Iain M Banks (in Memoriam), John Clute, Malcolm Edwards, Chris Foss, Jeanne Gomoll, Robin Hobb, and Bryan Talbot. Loncon is matching donations of memberships and allowing donors to keep their voting rights. For more information on how to donate memberships, see the Upcoming Cons page. At present, there are ten attending memberships available. Because so many are available, these memberships are also available first-come first-served.

Request these memberships over at the Request Assistance page.

In addition, Sirens has donated one membership to Con or Bust. Sirens takes place from October 16-19, 2014, in Stevenson, WA, USA, and is a conference on women in fantasy literature. Its 2014 theme is “hauntings,” and its Guests of Honor are Kendare Blake, Rosemary Clement-Moore, and Andrea Hairston. Because the con is not until October, the free membership (as well as any other necessary assistance) should be requested in one of the quarterly assistance periods (May 15-25 or August 15-25). For more information, see the Request Assistance page; or check out the other Upcoming Cons for which memberships will be available.

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Con or Bust is looking for WisCon memberships

Con or Bust, which helps fans of color/non-white fans attend SFF cons, is looking for three memberships to this year’s WisCon. If you have a membership on hand that you aren’t going to use and are willing to donate to Con or Bust, please email me at knepveu@steelypips.org to arrange for the transfer. Thanks very much!

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Con or Bust’s 2014 auction: final report

I’m thrilled to report that the final total of pledged bids in the 2014 Con or Bust auction stands at $14,476, which is a Con or Bust record. I’m very grateful to you all for your enthusiasm and support in offering items, bidding, and spreading the word.

Thanks also to those of you who donated for the matching gift from Arachne Jericho of $1,000, which we met with about an hour to spare the deadline, and to those of you who made donations before the matching gift or bought T-shirts.

All this support is particularly welcome because in the request period that just closed, Con or Bust set another record by receiving thirty (yes, three-zero) requests for monetary assistance to attend upcoming cons. On one hand, this is a good thing: more people are hearing about Con or Bust! On the other hand, I am now going to postpone deciding whether to move the next auction later in 2015; given the current level of demand, it seems irresponsible to allocate the funds from this year’s auction and other fundraisers to cover fifteen upcoming months, instead of the usual twelve. (I was hoping to move it later in the year to avoid overlapping with Worldbuilders and to give myself more time after the holidays.)

If you haven’t paid for your auction item yet, please head to the The auction’s over, now what? post. There’s also a post for general feedback about the auction, including a poll about last-minute bidding.

And, of course, you can always support Con or Bust by donating money or con memberships and by spreading the word about free memberships to upcoming cons. (Last call for JordanCon memberships!) Thank you all again!

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Your Con or Bust donation doubled—ending Friday!

Last week, Arachne Jericho offered to match regular donations to Con or Bust up to $1,000 over the next week. There’s a day left to go on that match—specifically, until noon Eastern on Friday, February 28—and Con or Bust has received just under $800 toward the matching gift.

So if you’d like to help fans of color/non-white fans attend SFF cons, and you’d like to have the effect of your support doubled, now is a great time to donate! Any amount is welcome indeed.

You can donate with a PayPal account or a credit card (after you click the orange button below, click “Continue” on the left side of the screen, above the credit card logos). On the “review your donation” screen, please click “Add special instructions to the seller” and state that this is for the matching gift, so that I don’t try to figure out if this matches an outstanding auction payment instead.




Thanks for your support, and thanks again to Arachne for the generous matching gift. Please spread the word!

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Free Norwescon memberships

Con or Bust is pleased to announce that Norwescon has donated two free memberships for the use of fans of color/non-white fans. Norwescon takes place from April 17-20, 2014, in Seattle, WA, USA. It is the Pacific Northwest’s Premiere Science Fiction and Fantasy Convention and one of the largest regional Science Fiction and Fantasy conventions in the United States. Its Guests of Honor are: Writer: Michael Moorcock; Science: Catherine S. Plesko; Artist: Robert Gould; Costuming: Anima! X; Special: Seanan McGuire; Publisher: 47 North.

Those interested in the memberships may request them through the Request Assistance page (through today, Tuesday February 25th, use the general form (you can also request monetary assistance); after that, use the linked memberships-only form).

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Auction feedback post

This is the post for general auction feedback (if you want the what-to-do post, head here). Behind the jump, I’m revisiting the topic of last-minute bidding as well as addressing some feedback I’ve already heard. I’d very much like to hear your thoughts on any other topics, as well.

Read More →

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Con or Bust accepting requests for assistance through Tuesday!

From now through Tuesday, February 25, Con or Bust is accepting requests from fans of color/non-white fans to attend upcoming SFF cons. Find out more at the Request Assistance page.

This includes requests for free memberships to specific cons, all of which are listed on the Upcoming Cons page. Four of these cons are coming up very soon, so I will mention them in this post:

  • Escapade, February 28-March 1, 2014, Los Angeles, CA. Escapade is a multi-media slash convention with programming designed by the attendees. Escapade has donated one membership to Con or Bust, which must be claimed today because the con is this weekend!
  • JOFcon, March 28-30, 2014, Linthicum, MD (near BWI airport). JOFcon is a collaborative convention for those who are interested in learning about convention running, teaching about convention running, and talking about fannish conventions. JOFcon has donated two memberships to Con or Bust.
  • Chi-Fi, March 29, 2014, Chicago, IL. Chi-Fi is a new con that will be holding a one-day event in 2014; it is conveniently located off of public transit. Its current guest list can be found here. Chi-Fi has donated ten memberships to Con or Bust.
  • JordanCon 6, April 11-13, 2014, Roswell, GA, USA. JordanCon is a fantasy literature convention founded in honor of the late author, Robert Jordan. Its Guests of Honor are Patrick Rothfuss (Author), Larry Elmore (Artist), and the cast of TWoTCast (Toastmasters). JordanCon has donated two memberships to Con or Bust.

But there is also major support available for Detcon1 (this year’s NASFic), Loncon 3 (this year’s Worldcon), and World Fantasy Con 2014, among many others, so please check out the full list! (Remember: you can request assistance for any upcoming con in the future, not one just in the next three months; the next request period will be in May.) And if you’re not requesting assistance, please spread the word!

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The auction’s over, now what?

If the magic of scheduled posts has worked properly, this has posted at 5:01 p.m. Eastern time on Sunday, February 23, 2014, and Con or Bust’s 2014 auction is now over.

Did I Win?

Winning bids are the high bid that was published to comments on or before 5:00 p.m. today (which is to say: if you’re seeing this post, it’s too late). If there is a tie, the first comment published is the winning bid.

This is a purely mechanical determination, so you shouldn’t need me to make a mod ruling, but in unusual cases or if you just want to be sure, feel free to comment at the post in question and I will come take a look. (If you’re commenting right after the auction closes, it may take a few hours for me to respond, because of dinner and kids’ bedtimes.)

If you can’t quite remember what you bid on, you can either search for the name you would have commented under in the sidebar, or you can comment here using the same email address you would have used for bidding and I will email you when the spreadsheet is sorted out. (There are literally two hundred auction items this year, so please be patient.)

I Won; What Do I Do Now?

Congratulations and thanks very much for bidding! You can pay with a PayPal account or a credit card (after you click the orange button below, click “Continue” on the left side of the screen, above the credit card logos). On the “review your donation” screen, please click “Add special instructions to the seller” and state what auction item or items this is for. (It’s fine to aggregate payments for multiple auctions. No-one’s ever run out of room, but if you do, just email con.or.bust@gmail.com with the information.)

Other things that should go in the “special instructions” field: (1) if your email address is different from the one you used to comment; (2) if you DON’T want your PayPal mailing address to be used to ship your item to.





Once you’ve paid, you will get an email acknowledgment of your payment and I will notify your seller. Important note: this year, these emails will come from con.or.bust@gmail.com, because the wonderful Yoon Ha Lee is helping me with some of the administrative tasks, so be on the lookout for that address.

I Offered Something for Auction; What Do I Do Now?

Thank you for offering something! Just wait until you get email from con.or.bust@gmail.com, letting you know that your winner has paid and providing you with their contact information. Then make whatever arrangements are necessary!

If you can’t quite remember all the things you offered, you can use the drop-down menu in the sidebar titled “Find Posts by Author.”

Finally, I mention this only because some people have asked if they could do it in past years: if bidding was vigorous, you may, where practical and in your sole discretion, offer additional items to people with the high losing bids or who got their bids in late. But that would be an entirely optional exercise of extreme generosity on your part—which means, bidders, don’t importune or I will frown disapprovingly at you over the Internet.

I Need Help!

Comment here or email con.or.bust@gmail.com. (After 90 days, I will close comments on posts to reduce comment spam, but I want people to be happy with their auction experience, so I will always be glad to hear from you by email. Update: comment spam has been very vigorous, so I’m closing comments on individual auction posts and leaving them open on the end-of-auction posts.)

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