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Program Participants

For people who want to participate.


If you are interested in being a participant next year, please read these guidelines before contacting us. We hope it will answer most of your questions. Thanks.

We would love to be able to give a programming slot to everyone who asks, but if we did that we would have to hold the convention aboard a TARDIS and acquire a license for a Time Turner. Since both of those are impossible (for now, at least), we have to bow to reality (and the Fire Marshal) and put a cap on the number of participants. Also please understand that we are unable to comp everyone.


Most of our comped particpants meet one of the following criteria:


  • Authors should have a book published with a commercial house that pays an advance and royalty, and is focused on getting books into the hands of readers. Membership in the SFWA is not required, nor does a publisher need to be a SFWA qualifying market. Short story authors should have placed at least three stories in print with a market that pays pro or semi-pro rates. We recognize that some epublishers do meet our criteria. See our note on small presses below.

  • Artists should derive at least a portion of their income from art. (Yes, we recognize that most artists and authors do need that day job.)

  • Others should have some distinction in their field. (A rocket scientist may not have published a book, but she may be well known in her field. And hey, rocket scientists are cool – kinda like Stetsons!) We also love to bring in musicians and filkers as well as costumers, artists, and others who have interesting skills they can demo in a workshop setting.


Keep in mind that we’re a non-profit on a shoestring budget, so we generally aren't able to provide any travel, lodging, or other expenses to folks beyond our Honored and Special Guests. Gosh, we wish we could, because we attend conventions around the country ourselves, and know it ain't cheap. We can generally provide an autograph session and may be able to help with free or inexpensive space for selling books, CDs, or other goods.


And what if you're with a small press or you're self-published? Please consider buying a membership. Quite a few of our participants do so, just to support FenCon. We may still be able to use you on programming, but please don't take it personally if we can't fit you onto a panel. Again, we're at the mercy of that pesky time-space continuum. But please, bring your promotional materials and put them out on our freebie table.


If you are interested in being a participant at FenCon, please contact Programming.