Pixel Scroll 3/24/17 No, Mr. Bond, I Expect You To Scroll

(1) ALIEN HECK. Yahoo! Movies has the latest Alien: Covenant poster: “’Alien: Covenant’: Third Poster Welcomes Moviegoers to Extraterrestrial Hell”.

After decades away from the franchise that he began back in 1979, director Ridley Scott has become unbelievably gung-ho about the Alien series, promising that he’s got perhaps another half-dozen sequels already planned out for the near future. Before he can get to those, however, he’ll first deliver the follow-up to 2012’s Prometheus, Alien: Covenant, which by the looks of its recent trailer, is going to be a no-holds-barred descent into extraterrestrial madness. And now, its third theatrical poster (see it below) makes plain that its action won’t just be otherworldly; it’ll be downright hellish.

(2) BRAGGING ON BATMAN. Is this claim big enough for you? Why “Batman: The Animated Series 1992-1995” is far better than any other incarnation before or since.

(3) EVIDENCE OF GENIUS. Up for auction the next six days — “Remarkable Letter Signed by Albert Einstein, Along With His Initialed Drawings”. Minimum bid is $15,000.

Albert Einstein letter signed with his hand drawings, elegantly explaining his electrostatic theory of special relativity to a physics teacher struggling to reconcile it with experiments he was conducting. In addition to the letter, which is new to the market, Einstein generously replies to a series of questions the teacher asks him on a questionnaire, providing additional drawings and calculations, initialed ”A.E.” at the conclusion. Dated 4 September 1953 on Princeton’s Institute for Advanced Study letterhead, Einstein writes to Arthur L. Converse, the teacher from Malcolm, Iowa, in part, ”There is no difficulty to explain your present experiment on the basis of the usual electrostatic theory. One has only to assume that there is a difference of potential between the body of the earth and higher layers of the atmosphere, the earth being negative relatively to those higher layers…[Einstein then draws Earth and the atmosphere, referring to it for clarification] The electric potential p rises linearly with the distance h from the surface of the earth…For all your experiments the following question is relevant: How big is the electric charge produced on a conductor which is situated in a certain height h, this body being connected with the earth…” Also included is Einstein’s original mailing envelope from ”Room 115” of the Institute for Advanced Study, postmarked 7 September 1953 from Princeton. Folds and very light toning to letter, otherwise near fine. Questionnaire has folds, light toning and staple mark, otherwise near fine with bold handwriting by Einstein. With an LOA from the nephew of Arthur Converse and new to the market.

(4) PROFESSIONAL FAKE REVIEW. As announced in comments, Theakers Quarterly have posted their fake review of There Will Be Walrus. They’re doing these as a fundraiser for Comic Relief on Red Nose Day. This is the first of four paragraphs in the review:

Military science fiction is a part of the genre that does not always get the attention it deserves, but thank goodness Cattimothy House is on the case, producing an anthology of stories and essays that ranks with the very best sf being produced in the world. Overrated social justice writerers such as John Scalesy and Jim B. Hinds might knock this kind of stuff and despise the fans who love it, but us real fans know the real deal when we see it, and here we do!

(5) NEW TAFF REPORT. Jacqueline Monahan published her TAFF trip report and earned a $500 bounty for the fund from the Southern California Institute for Fan Interests. More details when I find out how fans can get a copy.

(6) SALLY RIDE. At UC San Diego, where Ride served as a professor, a new graduate fellowship — the Sally Ride Fellowship for Women in Physics – has been established in her name to inspire future generations of boundary-breaking physicists who will contribute to the public good.

The pioneering astronaut Sally Ride was a beloved professor at UC San Diego for years. Brian Keating, professor of physics and Associate Director of the Clarke Center, and his wife, Sarah, recently provided the lead gift to fund the Sally Ride Graduate Fellowship for the Advancement of Women in Physics. “We thought this would be a great way to honor Sally Ride’s accomplishments and at the same time, motivate young scientists,” said Brian. “We hope that UC San Diego students will be inspired by her contributions to science and society.”

(7) STATISTICAL ACCURACY. Lately Cecily Kane has tweeted more than once about File 770 not linking to the Fireside Report

File 770 has linked to the Fireside Report. Before that it was discussed last September in comments. The thing I have never done is written an article about it, as I recently did with the FIYAH Magazine Black SFF Writer Survey.

This latest tweet came after I quoted Lela E. Buis in yesterday’s Scroll. That wasn’t the most popular thing I’ve ever posted and the comments section is open — it’s a shame to think we’ve been stuck reading Vox Day’s ridiculous attacks when we might be hearing something useful from Cecily Kane.

(8) SCRIMSHAW. We Hunted The Mammoth understands what’s happening — “Vox Day publishes book with near-identical cover to John Scalzi’s latest, declares victory”.

Beale’s master plan here, evidently, is to convince enough of his supporters to buy Kindle copies of the ersatz book out of spite so that it outranks Scalzi’s book in Kindle sales, a somewhat meaningless metric given that Beale’s books is priced at $4.99, compared to Scalzi’s $12.99, and that Scalzi is also selling actual paper copies of his book, while Beale’s is only available as an ebook. (Beale’s book has been taken down from Amazon several times already in the brief time it’s been out, apparently because, you know, it looks almost identical to Scalzi’s book, but at the moment it’s up on the site.)….

Beale, for all of his many defects, does seem to understand the art of the publicity stunt.

(9) THE LINE STARTS HERE. Can it be true that Kelly Freas and Pablo Picasso agreed about how nude women look? Go ahead, look at this Freas abstract now up for bid and tell me I’m wrong.

(10) DOUBLE UP. Rich Horton takes a lighthearted look back at “A Forgotten Ace Double: Flower of Doradil, by John Rackham/A Promising Planet, by Jeremy Strike”.

The covers are by probably the two leading SF illustrators of that time: Jack Gaughan (in a more psychedelic than usual mode for him), and Kelly Freas. So, I spent a fair amount of time on the background of these writers. Could it be that the novels themselves are not so interesting? Well — yes, it could.

Rackham, as I have said before, was a pretty reliably producer of competent middle-range SF adventure. And that describes Flower of Doradil fairly well. Claire Harper is an agent of Earth’s Special Service, come to the planet Safari to investigate some mysterious activity on the proscribed continent Adil. Safari is mostly devoted to hunting, but Adil is occupied by the humanoid (completely human, it actually seems) natives. But some plants with tremendous medical properties are being smuggled out, and the agents sent to investigate have disappeared.

(11) POETRY OF PHYSICS. In advance of the Arthur C. Clarke Center for Human Imagination’s upcoming event, “Entanglements: Rae Armantrout and the Poetry of Physics”, they have produced a bonus episode of their podcast: a conversation between poet Armantrout and Clarke Center cosmologist Brian Keating.

The event takes place April 13 at UC San Diego. Armantrout, Keating, the writer Brandon Som, and the critic Amelia Glaser will discuss how Rae’s poems mix the personal with the scientific and speculative, the process of interdisciplinary creativity, and what her poetic engagement with physics can teach those working in the physical sciences.

(12) TODAY’S BIRTHDAY BOYS

  • Born March 24, 1874 – Harry Houdini
  • Born March 24, 1901 – Disney animator Ub Iwerks.

(13) TEN MYTHS. Carl Slaughter, recommending “10 Sci-Fi Movie Myths That Drive Scientists Crazy” from CBR, says “Instead of discussing science movie by movie, this debunk video is organized by topics.  I would add lasers, but more about laser myths another time.”

Outer space is vast and holds a multitude of mysteries that have yet to be solved. But for some reason, the mysteries we have solved are still be represented incorrectly by Hollywood today. We understand these movies are all fiction, but with our growing knowledge of the universe it’s hard to ignore the glaring mistakes made in movies that make them less realistic. Here are 10 space facts movies ALWAYS get wrong.

The video covers: gravity, no helmet, black holes, sound, explosions, speed, time, distance, dogfights, and Mars.

(14) THEY DELIVER. According to the maker of “Futurama:  Authentic Science, Sophisticated Comedy, Cultural Commentary,” their video takes “A look at the show that brought humor and emotion into the sterile world of science and arithmetic.”

(15) FINNISH WEIRD. Europa SF reports that the latest issue of Finnish Weird is available.

This is a fanzine from Finland that features stories on speculative fiction, this time from Magdalena Hai, J.S. Meresmaa and Viivi Hyvönen.

The text includes an English translation. The issue is available as a free download here.

(16) FIVE STAR TREK CAPTAINS AND ONE DOCTOR WHO CAPTAIN. Another Carl Slaughter pick: “There are so many delightful memories and insightful comments during this discussion with 5 Star Trek captains, I can’t even begin to list them.  Kirk, Picard, Sisko, Janeway, and Archer were all on stage in London in 2012.  To top it off, the discussion is hosted by yet another captain, Captain Jack Harkness of Doctor Who/Torchwood fame.”

(17) BOMB OR NO BOMB? Digital Antiquarian tries to answer the question “What’s the Matter with Covert Action?”, game designer Sid Meier’s biggest disappointment – mostly to Sid himself.

But there are also other, less scandalous cases of notable failure to which some of us continually return for reasons other than schadenfreude. One such case is that of Covert Action, Sid Meier and Bruce Shelley’s 1990 game of espionage. Covert Action, while not a great or even a terribly good game, wasn’t an awful game either. And, while it wasn’t a big hit, nor was it a major commercial disaster. By all rights it should have passed into history unremarked, like thousands of similarly middling titles before and after it. The fact that it has remained a staple of discussion among game designers for some twenty years now in the context of how not to make a game is due largely to Sid Meier himself, a very un-middling designer who has never quite been able to get Covert Action, one his few disappointing games, out of his craw. Indeed, he dwells on it to such an extent that the game and its real or perceived problems still tends to rear its head every time he delivers a lecture on the art of game design. The question of just what’s the matter with Covert Action — the question of why it’s not more fun — continues to be asked and answered over and over, in the form of Meier’s own design lectures, extrapolations on Meier’s thesis by others, and even the occasional contrarian apology telling us that, no, actually, nothing‘s wrong with Covert Action.

(18) UNEARTHLY VISIONS. In Jaroslav Kalfar’s A Spaceman of Bohemia, “A Czech Astronaut’s Earthly Troubles Come Along for the Ride”: a New York Times review by Hari Kunzru.

The reason the Czech Republic is launching a manned spacecraft is the arrival of a strange comet that has “swept our solar system with a sandstorm of intergalactic cosmic dust.” A cloud, named Chopra by its Indian discoverers, now floats between Earth and Venus, turning the night sky purple. Unmanned probes sent out to take samples have returned mysteriously empty. Likewise a German chimpanzee has returned to Earth with no information save the evidence that survival is possible. The Americans, the Russians and the Chinese show no sign of wishing to risk their citizens, so the Czechs have stepped up, with a rocket named for the Protestant reformer and national hero Jan Hus. At many points in the novel, Kalfar sketches key moments in Czech history, and the very premise of a Czech space mission is clearly a satire on the nationalist pretensions of a small post-Communist nation. Financed by local corporations whose branding is placed on his equipment, Jakub is the epitome of the scrappy underdog, grasping for fame by doing something too crazy or dangerous for the major players.

(19) NO GORILLA. The Verge interviews visual-effects supervisor Jeff White about “How Industrial Light & Magic built a better Kong for Skull Island”.

When you have a featured character like this, how do you determine what techniques you’ll use to realize him? Particularly when it comes to performance — do you go through different approaches as to whether to use pure motion-capture, or pure animation?

We definitely did. We were very fortunate to work with [actor] Terry Notary, who I’d worked with before on Warcraft. He did a lot of body performance work. We had a couple days in mo-cap where Jordan could iterate very quickly with Terry to work through different scenes, then also try different gaits. And try things like, “Give us 10 chest pounds.” So he’d try different cadences. Is it three, is it alternating hands, is it hands together? Just trying to give us a nice library of things to pull from.

Then I would say the same is true of the face. We had a day of capture with Toby Kebbell (A Monster Calls, Warcraft), where he works through some of the scenes — particularly the less action-heavy scenes, where you really have a lot of time to look at Kong’s eyes, and the movement of the face. There are some shots where that facial capture is used directly, but through the production process and the reworking of the scenes, a lot of what Kong needed to do changed so much that the capture was used a lot more as inspiration and moments to pull from. And then ultimately a lot of the animation was key-framed. I think that was actually important to do, especially when trying to sell that Kong was 100 feet tall. Because even weighted down and moving slower, anyone that’s six feet tall is going to be able to change direction and move much faster than Kong would ever be able to.

It’s not even just a matter of saying, “Let’s take that and slow it down by 25 percent.” Once the arm gets moving, it can actually be pretty fast. But then when he needs to change direction, you need to have that appropriate, physically accurate process of getting this massive arm to move a different direction. With the animation in particular, it was a real challenge between making sure Kong felt slow enough where he was huge, but at the same time not letting the shots drag on so long that it no longer became an action movie.

(20) AN ALTERNATE INTERPRETATION. Carl Slaughter explains:

“Chain of Command” is usually included in lists of Star Trek’s best episodes.  This is the one with “There are 4 lights !”  The antagonist in this two-parter is Captain Jellico, who clashes with the Enterprise’s crew and even deliberately endangers Picard’s life. This video essay depicts Jellico as the protagonist who made all the right decisions for all the right reasons.

 

[Thanks to John King Tarpinian, Cat Eldridge, rcade, Michael J. Walsh, Iphinome, and Carl Slaughter for some of these stories. Title credit belongs to File 770 contributing editor of the day Bill.]

Vegas Tributes For Joyce Worley Katz

By Jacq Monahan & John Wesley Hardin: Joyce Worley Katz , High Priestess of fandom, fanzine fan, beloved wife and friend, died peacefully on July 30, 2016 after complications from a stroke. The co-chair of 1969’s St. Louiscon was a pioneer in video game journalism and educational software. She was once accused of destroying science fiction, which charge she wore with pride. She was also proud of her Native American heritage; she loved sparkly, oversized rings, a succession of indoor and outdoor cats, her vast amount of friends, and fellow fan and husband of 46 years, Arnie Katz. Known for her warmth, hospitality and welcoming spirit, Joyce Katz was the heart of Las Vegas fandom. She will be sorely missed.

Click the links above for an in-depth bio and fanac.

By Jacq Monahan: She was generous, warm, witty, and welcoming, hostess to the Vegrants, a bi-monthly fannish gathering, and to many a TAFF delegate.  She was gracious and wise, supportive and caring, at home in the kitchen or at the keyboard.  For her friends, home was wherever she was at the moment.  She was Joyce Katz, one of fandom’s finest (and Earth’s).  A brilliant star has had its supernova.  Now she belongs to the galaxy, which, even in its great expanse, is not nearly large enough to contain her heart, nor the love we had for her.     –Jacq Monahan (who speaks here for many others)

Prelude To A Honeymoon In Vegas

Nic Farey, Roy Hessinger, and Jennifer (AlLee) Farey. Photo by Alan White.

Nic Farey, Roy Hessinger, and Jennifer (AlLee) Farey. Photo by Alan White.

Nic Farey married Jennifer AlLee on February 29 in the social event of the season. Of my season, for sure.

Nic invited me to the wedding during a Facebook chat. I was pleased to be asked. And glad of a chance to visit with Vegas fans I rarely see. Nic, however, thinking I needed to be sold on a journalistic reason to go, offered, “You can be the embedded correspondent.” That’s what they call those reporters who follow the military into action, of course, and I doubted that was a good title for somebody attending a wedding. Nic saw my point. He said instead I could be the War Correspondent.

Your War Correspondent stayed at the Green Valley Resort in Henderson, and on Leap Day a little before 6 p.m. I found Nic and his friends finishing a last-minute smoke outside the entry to the hotel wing. Nic led the way to the elevator.

The ceremony was in a beautiful suite upstairs. The middle of the living room had been cleared out, with two rows of sofas, chairs and ottomans against the window overlooking the pool for the guests. I sat beside Rani Bush. De De White, on my right, filled me about what her husband Alan, the official wedding photographer, was shooting. (Small world: I wrote up Alan and De De’s wedding in File 770 when they were the first couple to be married in the newly-opened Excalibur hotel’s wedding chapel.)

Beside us was a baby grand piano. On top was a mountain of gifts wrapped in white with purple ribbon – for everyone had carefully followed the suggestion to buy something in the couple’s Bed, Bath & Beyond registry.

As Nic and best man Ken Vaden looked on, matron of honor Lisa Richardson and the bride, Jen, entered the room.

Roy Hessinger officiated over the ceremony. When Nic and Jen exchanged vows, Nic’s “I DO!” could be heard at the pool six floors below.

They exchanged rings. Jen’s went on smoothly. Nic’s proved to fit better on a pinky than on his ring finger.

Following a Scottish tradition they shared a drink from a large cup.

As they were speaking the very last words of the ceremony there was a knock at the door. The videographers had just arrived….

2 COMP

Alan White took pictures of Nic and Jen holding their certificate. Then the couple had the first dance. The music was carefully chosen and Nic says he whispered some “At Last” lyrics into Jen’s ear as they danced.

The reception followed. Toasts were raised.

The best man offered a short speech: “That was it.”

Jennifer’s son, William Allee, made a slightly longer speech, first praising his mother, then teasing the groom. “And then there’s Nic – he has a very strong personality. ….Can overcome that nobody has any idea what he’s saying. ..Nic, I have nothing but the utmost respect for you…”

Jacq Monahan, De De White, Mike Glyer, Brenda Dupont. Photo by Alan White.

Jacq Monahan, De De White, Mike Glyer, Brenda Dupont. Photo by Alan White.

Then the mingling began. I had fun talking with Nic, Brenda Dupont, Teresa Cochran and James Taylor, and Jacq Monahan, past TAFF delegate and Cineholics film reviewer (her review of The Witch went up last week.)

Brenda Dupont, Teresa Cochran, James Taylor, De De White, Mike Glyer. Photo by Alan White.

Brenda Dupont, Teresa Cochran, James Taylor, De De White, Mike Glyer. Photo by Alan White.

We also were served scrumptious whipped-cream-topped red velvet cakes in plastic wineglasses.

Eventually I noticed I was one of the last people still there. Others had figured out the honeymoon couldn’t begin til they were gone. And having made a point of being only the War Correspondent, I sounded retreat and followed them out the door…

Update 03/15/20-16: Corrected name of matron of honor.

2014 TAFF Vote Count

Curt Phillips won the 2014 Trans-Atlantic Fan Fund race with a first-round majority. Here is a report from the fund administrators with the ballot count.

THE RESULTS

100 votes were cast in North America and 39 votes in Europe. These raised a total of $1,187.68 in North America and £266 in Europe.

The results of the first-place voting can be seen in the table below. The vote of one fan from the Rest of the World has been folded into the results from North America to preserve the anonymity of the vote.

                                    N. America   Europe   Total

Brad & Cindy Foster                     31        14        45

Curt Phillips                             54        21        75

Randy Smith                               15        2         17

No Preference                            0          2         2

Total                                       100        39        139

The 20% rule meant that each qualifying candidate required at least 20 votes in North America and 7 votes in Europe (‘no preference’ was not included when calculating these numbers).

The list of voters follows the jump.

Update 04/29/2014: Added three names to voter list at request of administrators. Update 05/02/2014: Added another name at their request. Continue reading

Latest TAFF Newsletter

Jacq Monahan and Jim Mowatt, your Trans-Atlantic Fan Fund administrators, have published TAFFtastic! #1 [PDF file]. Five free pixels to the first one who can guess why it’s designated a “JM-pire Publication”…

Mowatt, who just completed his trip as the delegate to North America, reports —

The UK TAFF fund currently stands at £2994.82, despite my handing over vast sums to a mighty multitude of airline companies. I spent £2500 altogether so will be begging your help to try to replace this money.

He will begin by shaking down the fans at Novacon this weekend. But that will be only the beginning!

Looking for 2014 TAFF Candidates

The Trans-Atlantic Fan Fund is looking for candidates for the 2013 Eastbound TAFF trip.

TAFF co-administrator Jacq Monahan says candidates must:

• Be nominated by three North American SF fans.
• Be nominated by two European SF fans.
• Submit a written platform not exceeding 101 words.
• Post a bond of $20 (USD).

The candidates must pledge to take the 2014 TAFF trip and attend Loncon 3, being held in London, UK from August 14-18, 2014.

TAFF delegates are expected to write and produce a trip report, and administer the fund for two years. The fan fund will pay for the trip, related expenses and the publication of the completed trip report. Candidates will be voted on by interested fans from all over the world – voters and nominators must be active SF fans that are known to the administrators.

The North American administrator is Jacqueline Monahan – Email address:
jaxn8r (at) msn.com   Postal address:  2991 El Cajon Street, Las Vegas, NV 89169, United States.

The European administrator is Jim Mowatt – Email address: jim.mowatt (at) gmail.com Postal address: 273 The Rowans, Milton, Cambridge, CB24 6ZA United Kingdom.

If you would like to be considered notify one of the administrators and begin to gather your nominators. Nominators should submit their nominations to the local administrator as soon as possible. The deadline for nominations is 11:59 p.m. (23:59) PST on December 31, 2013.

Voting will commence shortly after the close of nominations. The voting deadline will be April 22, 2014 at 11:59 p.m. (23:59) PST.

Hertz: Let’s Get Ready for Some Auction

By John Hertz: The Fan Funds Auction at this year’s Worldcon, LoneStarCon 3 (28 Aug – 1 Sep, San Antonio, Texas), has been scheduled for Saturday afternoon 31 Aug. Have you anything you’d care to contribute?

If you’re attending, bring it. If you aren’t, consider sending it. A friend might bring it for you. At least one item, planned last year but only just ready, is being mailed to me so I can bring it. I’ve learned how things can be shipped to the con; call me (213) 384-6622 (land line, Pacific Daylight Time) and ask.

This traditional auction benefits our traveling-fan funds, which are maintained by various donations.

The senior fund is TAFF (Trans-Atlantic Fan Fund), sending fans in alternate directions each year between North America and the United Kingdom – Republic of Ireland – Europe since 1953. DUFF (Down Under Fan Fund) for North America – Australia & New Zealand, founded 1972, is the second side of a triangle. Third side is GUFF (between U.K. – Eire – Europe and ANZ; Going Under, or Get Up-and-over, Fan Fund, depending on the direction), founded 1978. There are sister funds, e.g. CUFF (Canadian Unity Fan Fund), FFANZ (Fan Fund of Australia & New Zealand).

The two trans-ocean funds touching the continent of LoneStarCon 3 are TAFF and DUFF. TAFF’s current NA Administrator is Jacq Monahan, visiting delegate Jim Mowatt; I’m the DUFF NA Adm’r, delegate Bill Wright. We’ll all be at the Auction. So will John Purcell who runs the Worldcon Fanzine Lounge this year. Other funds may be represented.

If your donation is labeled saying where proceeds go, they will; otherwise we’ll share them out. Consider also noting what makes your item of interest, what value it may have; we’re more diverse these days and people may not know. In the 2009 Worldcon Art Show, Jon Singer exhibited pots he’d made of clay from Neil Gaiman’s yard; everybody knows Jon Singer, but –

We’ll have to decide on the spot what order to auction things in and even whether to auction particular things at all. If your item’s not auctioned, we’ll dispose of it in our discretion unless you say otherwise (e.g. last year a rare copy of a Sam Moskowitz book didn’t arrive in time but raised money through a private donor’s putting it in a public-access university collection).

Oh, and you might want to buy things.

Into Darkness, With Popcorn

startrekmovie
Cineholics reviewer (and past TAFF delegate) Jacq Monahan likes the new Star Trek movie:

The iconic Enterprise crew is back again, fresh from a mission that results in an endangered Spock (Zachary Quinto) rescued by Kirk (Chris Pine) in a manner that violates a key Starfleet Prime Directive while on a primitive, volcanically-challenged planet. And that’s just the first ten minutes.

She rates the film a four on a five-point scale.

TAFF Is On!

The TAFF administrators have officially announced the candidates for the 2013 Trans-Atlantic Fan Fund, Theresa Derwin and Jim Mowatt. Each has sworn a mighty oath (well, confirmed a willingness) to attend LoneStarCon 3 in San Antonio if he or she wins, and posted a £15 bond.

The ballot is available here [RTF format]. Votes and donations may also be submitted via PayPal – see the ballot for details.

Voting ends Friday, April 19 at 23:59 British Summer Time aka UTC+1.

Theresa Derwin was nominated by Anders Bellis, Steve Green and John Meaney (from Europe), as well as Christopher J. Garcia and Yvonne Penney (from North America). Here is Derwin’s campaign platform, from the ballot:

Derwin: The Natural Selection. Theresa Derwin is standing for TAFF! A regular convention attendee and panel moderator/member, Theresa has been active in fandom since her teen years. She produces fanzine Andromeda’s Offspring, which promotes the genre work of female authors. She has also previously written for Critical Wave and writes book reviews on her blog www.terror-tree.co.uk whilst writing lots of fiction in a variety of anthologies and in her first book Monsters Anonymous. Theresa wants to attend LoneStarCon3 as a positive ambassador for European/British fandom and female fans and writers in particular. She brings enthusiasm, knowledge and humour to the race!

Jim Mowatt was nominated by Fran Dowd, Rob Hansen and Mark Plummer (in Europe), as well as Randy Byers and Curt Phillips (in North America). Jim’s platform reads:

Jim Mowatt came of age in the fiery fannishness of Leeds and burst upon the scene as Jim Trash at the Sou’wester Eastercon in 1994. Few noticed. He retreated into the shadows like a bewildered ninja. Since then he has made a number of friends, produced fanzines (e.g. Pips and Beam) and decided that fandom is a wonderful place to be(eblebear). He has produced a prodigious number of podcasts, and has a great face for radio. Jim followed a woman to Cambridge in 2002. She didn’t call the police so he moved in. San Antonio needs to know why.

The winner will have approximately four months to arrange his or her TAFF trip, which customarily includes meeting various groups of fans around the country in addition to attending the anchor convention. Recent visits to North America by TAFF delegates have included trips to Las Vegas, Toronto, New York City, Seattle, the Bay Area and Reno. The trip often lasts up to a month, and sometimes longer.

The Trans-Atlantic Fan Fund has been facilitating the exchange of fans between Europe and North American since the 1950s. More information about TAFF can be found at the official unofficial website: www.taff.org.uk. TAFF also has presences on LiveJournal (taffnews.livejournal.com), Facebook (facebook.com/TAFFnews) and Twitter (@TAFFnews).

Looking for 2013 TAFF Candidates

The Trans-Atlantic Fan Fund is looking for candidates for the 2013 Westbound TAFF trip.

TAFF co-administrator John Coxon says candidates must:

• Be nominated by three European SF fans.
• Be nominated by two North American SF fans.
• Submit a written platform not exceeding 101 words.
• Post a bond of £15 (GBP).

The candidates must also pledge to take the 2013 TAFF trip and attend the Worldcon, LoneStarCon 3, in San Antonio, TX, USA from August 29 to September 2, 2013.

“TAFF delegates are expected to write and produce a trip report and will administer the fund for two years,” adds Coxon. “The fan fund will pay for the trip, related expenses and the publication of the completed trip report.”

Candidates will be voted on by interested fans from all over the world – voters and nominators must be active SF fans that are known to the administrators.

Nominators should send their nominations to their local administrator. The European administrator is John Coxon – his email address is john.coxon (at) gmail.com and his postal address is 14 Chapel Lane, Peterborough, PE4 6RS, United Kingdom. The North American administrator is Jacqueline Monahan – her email address is jaxn8r (at) msn.com and her postal address is 2991 El Cajon Street, Las Vegas, NV 89169, United States.

The deadline for nominations is 23:59 GMT on December 31, 2012. Voting will commence shortly after the close of nominations and be completed by April 5, 2013.