Wednesday, October 01, 2014


Really Early Registrations available!

We've just started to collect memberships for next year's JOFCon.

You can register at JOFCon Minneapolis 2015 Registration.  We have a limited supply of Really Early Registrations available (at the time of writing only twelve left!) -- and they'll only be at the $40 rate until they're all gone or we announce a hotel (which will be soon!).  

Saturday, September 27, 2014


JOFCon Minneapolis/St Paul October 9-11, 2015.

I'm now planning the second JOFCon to be held in the Twin Cities area on October 9-11, 2015. After six years on the CONvergence board of directors I wanted to have an event to discuss the various issues involved in helping to run SF and other geeky conventions. Interested in learning more? I've got a website all set up, and more information will be posted there.

Sunday, January 27, 2013



I'm headed to Capricon in a little less than two weeks and I'm on a bunch of panels.  A couple of them are outside of my traditional comfort zone, but I'm excited about that.  

It should be fun!

I Like Big Books and I Cannot Lie - Friday, 02-08-2013 - 4:00 pm to 5:30 pm - Botanic Garden B (Special Events - Programming)
Long novels are often reviled, but they give the author a change to build an extremely in depth world for readers to lose themselves in, as well as more time and space to develop realistic characters. Who makes the best use of all those words and pages? Why is longer better?
Michael Lee, Marah Searle-KovacevicJoy Ward (M)

Fandom a-GoGo: Fannish Productions - Saturday, 02-09-2013 - 10:00 am to 11:30 am - Botanic Garden B (Special Events - Programming)
For generations, fans have expressed their love of SF/F by making things like fanzines, fanart, fanfic, and fancasts that celebrate our genres and communities. These fans discuss their productions and others that you might want to check out.
James Bacon, Michael Lee (M), Lynne M. ThomasBen Yalow

The Obligatory 50th Anniversary Doctor Who Panel - Saturday, 02-09-2013 - 4:00 pm to 5:30 pm - Botanic Garden B (Special Events - Programming)
After 50 years, 11 Doctors, and 47 companions, what is there left to say about Doctor Who? Believe it or not, quite a lot, as our panelists will demonstrate.
Tonya Foust, Michael Lee (M), Rich Lukes, Jody Lynn NyeMichael D. Thomas

A Hard Hobbit to Break - Saturday, 02-09-2013 - 7:00 pm to 8:30 pm - Botanic Garden A (Special Events - Programming)
We've all seen a third of the movie: Bilbo! Gandalf!! Hot Singing Dwarves (with beards, not a euphemism)!!! Gollum!!!! Peter Jackson's J.R.R. Tolkien's Middle Earth is back! It's time to speculate about the forthcoming two thirds of the trilogy.
David Abzug, Jennifer Lawrence, Michael Lee (M), Susan Stoltze, Tom Trumpinski - 

So Awful, It's Awesome: Guilty Pleasures - Saturday, 02-09-2013 - 8:30 pm to 10:00 pm - Birch A
Do you love mega sharks battling giant octopuses? Was Richard Grieco your favorite Loki? Is Sherlock Holmes better when he battles unbelievable CGI dinosaurs? These panelists talk about their favorite so bad it's awesome things from the past few years.
David Abzug, Tere de la Torre, Michael Lee, Dave McCarty (M), Leane Verhulst 

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Tuesday, January 08, 2013


My Arisia Schedule

For the second time, I'm going to Arisia out in Boston at the end of next week (January 18 - 21, 2013). I had a fantastic time last year, and this year I made sure I knew I was going long enough ahead of time to get on panels. I'm on a couple of panels:

Sunday 8:30pm
Doctor Who: The Dissertation of the Daleks — Media, Panel — 1hr 15min — Revere (2)
We continue our celebration of all things Who with a look at the Daleks, one of the Doctor's oldest and most persistent adversaries. Why are they so popular? When will they return? And how can they be stopped now that they don't need to climb stairs?
Samantha Dings, Forest Handford, Victoria Janssen, Michael Lee, Adam Lipkin (m)

Monday 10:00am
How Fans Hurt and Help Public Faces of Fandom — Fan Interest, Panel — 1hr 15min — Burroughs (3E)
Last year, Stephen King said Stephenie Meyer "can't write," and the "Twi-hards" came to defend her. Twilight boards were filled with reasonable discussions of the criticism, while sites like the Entertainment Weekly blog were filled with ill-informed attacks on King. Many fans have said they would never read the Twilight books because of the public image of Meyer's fanbase. How does the public face of fans help or hurt an author? Can fans do anything to change the perception of their fandom?
Randee Dawn, Shana Fuqua, Michael Lee, Paula Lieberman, Suzanne Reynolds-Alpert

I'm not throwing a party for CONvergence (or anything else) this year (I'm taking the year off of doing that) -- but I'm sure to be around the convention, volunteering (because you do), and finding ways to keep myself busy.

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Tuesday, September 04, 2012


Chicon 7 - Back from the Worldcon

I'm slowly recovering from my trip to Chicago over the weekend for Chicon 7, the 70th Worldcon. This was one of those conventions where most of the items of programming I got to were ones that I was participating in. All of the panels went well, though a few of them were in smaller rooms than they should have been; I was astonished that the Brit SF TV panel would be SRO at 9:00 AM, and of course a Doctor Who panel will frequently fill the room. The Star Wars panel I was on was quite possibly the best Star Wars panel I've been on, and one of my favorite panels at the con. First of all, I sat next to James Kahn, who wrote the Return of the Jedi novelization. When that novel first came out, I got it for my birthday, and so I read it before the film -- perhaps giving me my first experience with spoilers. My other favorite point on that panel was my realization when we discussed the impact of Star Wars on the world, that I said that without Star Wars, we would have had no ILM. Without ILM, we would not have had Pixar. No Pixar, Steve Jobs doesn't have had a second act after he leaves Apple for the first time, so he doesn't return to Apple. And therefore, without Star Wars, we would have no iPhones. Our other big endeavor of the weekend was the Minnesota Magpie room. We had GREAT help from Joel Philips, Jody Wurl, Eric Heideman, Matt Strait, Joe Pregracke, Matthew Gress and Missy Hayes, George Richard and Andy Murphy, and others as well. The parties went fantastically well in the evening, but I don't think any of our plans during the day were as successful. I'm OK with that, and I think much of that had to do with being on the top floor, but it will be worth considering for the future. It was also exciting to have multiple friends, previous CONvergence guests of honor, and future guests of honor visit our party, including several shortly after they had won the Hugo. We were frequently the last party going every night. One of the other real highlights for me as well was that I was able to talk to conrunners and fans from around the world -- they are becoming better friends and colleagues each time I see them, and I am very excited about the future of fandom. One of the things I like about the Worldcon is that it's been going on for nearly 75 years -- it's really the FIRST convention. I think there are some real challenges -- and I'm probably going to Dragon*Con next year instead of Texas for some of those reasons -- but I'll be in London in 2014, and I'm very excited to see Worldcon go to Kansas City in 2016.

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Wednesday, August 22, 2012


Chicon, Magpies, and Me

First of all, I have the times for the panels that I'll be on for Chicon

Fri Aug 31 9:00:amFri Aug 31 10:30:amBritish SF Television: Why Are Their Programs So Good?
Gold CoastFrom Doctor Who to Red Dwarf to Primeval, SF programs on British TV have been good. Why is that?

Fri Aug 31 4:30:pmFri Aug 31 6:00:pmStar Wars at 35
Gold CoastMay 2012 marked the 35th anniversary release of the original Star Wars. How did this film change SF movies and what would the world look like if it had never been? Are today's kids seeing it as the first movie in the series or are they now watching it in episode order? And if the latter, why would anyone continue after The Phantom Menace?

Sat Sep 1 6:00:pmSat Sep 1 7:30:pmDoctor Who: Is It Still a Kid's Show?
BuckinghamHas the "kids show" gotten more grown up with the last three Doctors? Was it an adult show even before the original cancellation? When, and how, did the transition happen, if it did?

We're going to have some small-group Krushenko's discussions in the Minnesota Magpie party suite during the convention as well. (The room will be available at con)

FRI3:00 PMHistory of Minnesota Fandom
(Eric Heideman, facilitator)
FRI4:30 PMClassic MN SF Authors Clifford D. Simak, Gordon R. Dickson, John Sladek and beyond
(Eric Heideman, facilitator)
SAT3:00 PMMinnesota-Based Conventions and Organizations
(Michael Lee, facilitator)
SAT4:30 PMThe Minnesota Writing Scene
(Eric Heideman, facilitator)
SUN3:00 PMWhy Minnesota Will Never Host a WorldCon
(Michael Lee, facilitator)

Also, the Minnesota Magpie party suite will be hosted by different groups each night.  It'll be one of the major places that I'll be during the evening hours.

Thu - MNSTf/Minicon/Mpls in 2073
Fri - Seamstress Guild
Sat - Geek Partnership Society (GPS)
Sun - CONvergence

I'm really excited about this -- it is going to be a full, and exciting, week. Hope to see you there!

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Sunday, August 12, 2012


Worldcon Planning

As we're only a couple of weeks away from Chicon 7, my spare time is looking at Chicon 7 and the Minnesota Magpies and going to my second Worldcon.

I've got more planned than I did last year at Reno -- I'm on multiple panels (and I'll mention those once the schedule is final and public), I'm helping keep an eye on social media and tweeting from @chicon_7, and I'm helping to put together the suite representing Minnesota during the convention.

We know what nights the various groups are going to be hosting in the room:

Thursday MNSTF/Minicon/Minneapolis in 2073 9:00 PM - LATE
Friday The Seamstress Guild 9:00 PM - LATE
Saturday Geek Partnership Society After Masquerade - LATE
Sunday CONvergence After Hugo Ceremony - LATE

We're also hoping to have some other things in the room, especially for people that are helping us fund the room. (If you're able to help, let me know!)

I'm really excited by this and hope to see you there!

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