Tag Archives: worldcon

Remembering Bobbie, one year later

Our friend and mentor Bobbie DuFault passed away one year ago, peacefully in her sleep, on September 14, 2013.

Bobbie was a leader in Northwest fandom, being involved with Rustycon, Norwescon, and other activities. There had been efforts to bring a second Worldcon to the region previously, and Bobbie picked up the banner in 2002, starting a bid for the 2005 NASFiC, which was intended to be a launchpad for a future Worldcon. She chaired Cascadia Con, which was a great success, showing off the talents of the region’s authors, artists, and other creative people to a wider audience. In 2012, she chaired Westercon 65, again to bring together and connect the local fan and creative community to a wider audience. She also served as Program Division Head for Chicon 7, working with the global community of authors and other program participants to put together the Worldcon program. Bobbie and her crew of loyal friends and family played essential roles in representing the Spokane in 2015 Worldcon Bid during Renovation, Chicon, and LoneStarCon.

In SWOC and among Worldcon conrunners, we knew Bobbie as a convention organizer, but she touched many other circles in and outside fandom. She was a writer, an artist, an educator, a gamer. As a leader she trusted people, pushed them to accomplish more, and came to command the loyalty of many different circles of people. She was an organizer of Reading for the Future and was the author of Science Fiction and Fantasy in the Classroom, a reference for teachers.

A group of Bobbie’s friends and family gathered at her home in Gold Bar on Saturday for a memorial service in her honor. Many drinks and hugs and stories were shared. Our thoughts are especially with her husband Jerry, her son Pete, her daughter Tiffany, and others closest to her.

For some of us, our work on Sasquan is a way of honoring Bobbie. We invite all who knew her to join with us to help make the 2015 Worldcon a wonderful experience for everyone, to show off the kind of creativity and comradeship that Bobbie was known for. We remember Bobbie, and she would have wanted us to make more great memories at her convention.

Agents, and a correction


Sasquan, the 73rd World Science Fiction Convention
19-23 August 2015 at Spokane WA USA

Sasquan announces appointment of international agents

Spokane, 9 August 2014

Sasquan is pleased to announce the appointment of three international agents who will help to represent Sasquan at many conventions throughout the world.

Alan Stewart, of Australia, will be Sasquan’s agent for conventions in Australia and New Zealand. Tamie Inoue of Japan will be Sasquan’s agent for Asia and Japan. Paul Dormer of the United Kingdom will be Sasquan’s agent for Europe.

Sasquan would be glad to hear from people who would like to be agents for Africa, South America, or other regions.

All of the agents for Sasquan may be reached by emailing agents@sasquan.org. The appropriate agent will respond to your question.

Full details of how to become a member of Sasquan are available at


The new rate for converting a YA membership from Supporting to Attending in the previous media release was incorrect. It was given as $95. The correct amount is $55. The amount on the website is correct. We apologize for the error.


For general media enquiries about Sasquan please contact .


Founded in 1939, the World Science Fiction Convention is one of the
largest international gatherings of authors, artists, editors,
publishers, and fans of science fiction and fantasy. The annual Hugo
Awards, the leading award for excellence in the fields of science
fiction and fantasy, are voted on by the Worldcon membership and
presented during the convention.

Sasquan is organized under the banner of the SWOC: http://swoc.org/contact.php

“World Science Fiction Society”, “WSFS”, “World Science Fiction
Convention”, “Worldcon”, “NASFiC”, “Hugo Award”, the Hugo Award Logo,
and the distinctive design of the Hugo Award Trophy Rocket are service
marks of the World Science Fiction Society, an unincorporated literary

Sasquan Listens, as our year begins

We invite you to join us at Loncon 3 on Monday, 18 August 2014, at 3pm at their Closing Ceremonies to pick up the gavel and officially start Sasquan’s year as the current Worldcon! There will be fun and prizes. Monday, August 18, 3:00 PM at Excel Second Stage (level 1).

Following that ceremony, our first program item will appear – “Sasquan Listens”. Our chair, vice-chair, some division heads and committee members will be there to answer questions and take suggestions about what you would like to see at the 2015 Worldcon. Tell us what you think, and what you’d like to do with us. Help us plan another great Worldcon! Monday, August 10, 4:30 PM at Excel Capital Suite 13 (level 3).

International rates for membership

Sasquan announces international rates: Attending memberships will be accepted for £100 or €125. This is only for in-person membership sales at our tables at conventions in Britain and Europe. This rate is good until August 31, 2014.

Other membership types will be:
Supporting: £25, €30
Converting Supporting to Attending: £75, €95
Child: £40, €50
Young Adult: £55, €65

Online registration through the website will continue to be in US dollars. Exchange rates will be calculated by the credit card provider or our financial partner (PayPal).

More information about registration and uogrades are available at the Sasquan Registration page.

Membership rates increase September 1

Membership rates for Sasquan, the 73rd World Science Fiction Convention, will increase at 12:01 AM Pacific Time on 1 September 2014. The new rates will be good at least through the end of December 2014.


The new rates are:

Full Attending Membership                                      $190

Convert Supporting to Attending                                150

Young Adult Attending                                                  95

Convert YA Supporting to Attending                             95

Child Attending                                                             80

Military Attending                                                          95


Through the end of January 2015, those who presupported may take a $20 discount off the appropriate conversion rates. Supporting memberships remain at $40.

Currently, Sasquan has 1,356 Attending Members and 913 Supporting Members (as of 6 August 2014). Sasquan has a total of 2,350 members (including other classes of membership).


The current, lower rates will be good past the end of both Loncon 3 and Shamrocon (this year’s Eurocon), and Sasquan will have a fan table at both those conventions.


Further information, rates in other currencies, and full details of how to become a member of Sasquan are available the Registration page.


Progress Report #1 is online

Members of Sasquan, and anyone else interested, can read our Progress Report #1 online. What’s in it?

  • Brad Foster’s first encounter with real food
  • Tom Smith encountering the papal apocalypse
  • David Gerrold at the first Star Trek convention
  • A piece about Vonda McIntyre, Hitchhiker’s Guide to the Galaxy, and Christopher Reeve
  • Leslie Turek and the first First Night
  • A remembrance of Bobbie DuFault
  • Something about shipping blueberries from Russia to Phoenix to feed the sasquatches
  • Many strange drawings of sasquatches by Brad Foster
  • Plus the usual, membership list, conventions updates, and so on. Lots of good stuff here, don’t miss it!

    Hugo voting? Join Loncon!

    Are you a member of Sasquan? Then you are eligible to vote in the Hugos. Next year! If you would like to participate in voting in this year’s Hugo Awards, you need to be a member of this year’s Worldcon, Loncon 3. Celebrating the best of science fiction and fantasy is what Worldcons are about, and the Hugo Awards are a very important part of that. If you can’t attend in person, you can become a supporting member for only US$40. You can join Loncon 3 today at http://www.loncon3.org/memberships/.

    Bobbie DuFault remembered

    For those of you who knew Bobbie DuFault and missed my post about reading her obituary in the company newsletter, HR has granted me permission to share it outside of Microsoft.

    Sci-Fi Champion Bobbie DuFault ‘Had a Helper’s Soul’

    Employee Barbara “Bobbie” DuFault is being remembered for her big heart, her passion to help colleagues and customers, and her love of science fiction.

    Family was the most important thing to Barbara “Bobbie” DuFault, and she considered most of the people she helped family.

    Barbara “Bobbie” DuFault spent more than a decade providing support, writing content, and managing projects in the consumer space.

    That was a lengthy list. It included the customers she supported at Microsoft, families struggling with drug and alcohol addiction on the Makah Reservation in Washington State, and the legions of science fiction fans who attended the roughly 150 conventions she helped organize.

    “Bobbie had a big heart and could tell when others had a problem,” Jerry Gieseke, her husband, told Microsoft. “She would sit down with them and make them feel like they were the most important thing on this planet to her. That was the thing: they were. Everybody Bobbie met was important, and she had a helper’s soul.”

    DuFault, content program manager for Microsoft’s Support for Small Business portal, died in her sleep September 14. She was 55.

    DuFault spent more than a decade providing support, writing content, and managing projects in the consumer space. She joined Microsoft in the late 1990s, a path that had started with the release of Publisher 1.0 in 1991 and her realization that Microsoft would own the small office. In 2002, she left her FTE role to raise her family and pursue her career as a technical writer and project manager. She returned in 2012 to work as one of the content project managers for the new Small Business portal.

    DuFault had a real passion for customers and for how Microsoft support content and solutions improved the customer experience with Microsoft products, said Erik Lustig, director of business planning and management in Customer Service and Support (CSS). “In my 17 years at the company, I never worked with someone who had more passion about their area of work and influence than Bobbie did for her work. She was always positive, striving to include all perspectives and business needs into the work she did.”

    Her big heart also extended to her colleagues, said Lisa Parks, business program manager for SMB Audience. “Bobbie cared about her coworkers and wanted to see them succeed. If she could help them, whether or not it was part of her job, she would.”

    She was also “wonderfully unflappable,” Parks added. “In team meetings, when some issue was being discussed, DuFault would confidently pipe up, ‘I can help fix this.'”

    Marilisa Vergottini, business program manager in CSS, said DuFault was such a pleasure to work with. “She was calm, knowledgeable, and so passionate about doing the right thing,” Vergottini said. “Proposals for change did not phase her, and when she was presented with a problem, she immediately looked for a viable solution. Her disposition was always sunny and positive, no matter what the circumstances. She was helpful and energetic, and for the short while that I [and my team] had the pleasure of working with her, she was a joy to have in the team and made my job a lot easier.”

    Bobbie DuFaultA lover of sci-fi, DuFault was instrumental in bringing the World Science Fiction Convention back to the Northwest for the first time in 50 years.

    DuFault was a professional artist, writer, and poet. She loved to do arts and crafts—so much so that she owned a vintage shop where she made and sold handmade jewelry. She was naturally curious and had an insatiable thirst for knowledge. “From ancient cultures to faraway planets, she had fairly extensive knowledge and would have extensive discussions for hours on whatever the topic was,” her husband said. “If she didn’t know the topic, she would let you teach her.”

    DuFault loved science fiction and fantasy. In her spare time, she volunteered with nonprofit literary organizations as a speaker and program coordinator both in the United States and abroad. She was on the board of trustees for Reading for the Future, a nonprofit literary organization that promotes the use of science fiction in the classroom to help teachers inspire students. She was serving as cochair of Sasquan, the 2015 World Science Fiction Convention, which will take place in Spokane. She had spent more than a decade trying to bring “Worldcon” back to the Northwest for the first time in 50 years.

    Even though DuFault was working in the tech field and loved science and technology of the future, she also looked back to the past. She and her husband owned a small farm on the outskirts of Gold Bar where they raised pigs and fowl, tended a garden, and canned food so that they always had plenty for their family.

    Colleagues said DuFault will be deeply missed and never forgotten. “Bobbie was an advocate for the underdog—the small and medium business whose needs weren’t complex like enterprise, or simple like consumer,” said Toby Richards, general manager of Support Engineering. “She was extremely disciplined in understanding the customer and applied a delicate care in the content experience for them. That care translated in how SMBs perceived our online support experience and in how Bobbie’s team will carry forth her memory and passion.”

    DuFault is survived by her husband, Jerry Gieseke, and two children.

    Like many, I miss her.  — Amber Clark

    Sasquan Names Guests of Honor

    Sasquan, the 73rd World Science Fiction Convention, to be held in Spokane, WA on August 19-23, 2015, is pleased to announce guests of honor for the convention: David Gerrold, Vonda N. McIntyre, Brad Foster, Tom Smith, and Leslie Turek.

    David Gerrold is best known as the screenwriter of the classic Star Trek episode “The Trouble With Tribbles”, and has also worked on Star Trek: The Animated Series, Babylon 5, Sliders, and other shows. Gerrold is also a Hugo-nominated novelist, author of When HARLIE Was One and The Man Who Folded Himself. He lives in the Bay Area.

    Vonda N. McIntyre is the author of the Hugo- and Nebula-winning novel Dreamsnake, the Starfarers series, media tie-in novels including novelizations of Star Trek II, Star Trek III, Star Trek IV, as well as many short stories in magazines and anthologies. She helped organize the first Clarion West writer’s conference and has taught at many other workshops. McIntyre leaves in the Seattle area and is known as a talented cook and a supporter of environmental causes and civil liberties.

    Brad Foster is a prolific artist who has contributed to both fan and professional publications in the field of science fiction. He has won eight Hugo awards as “Best Fan Artist” and has done many covers for Ansible and File 770 among many other fanzines. He was a regular contributor to Amazing Stories and is the founder of Jabberwocky Graphix, a publisher of comics and other art-related publications.

    Tom Smith, the self-styled “world’s fastest filker”, has been a popular performer and creator of science-fiction themed music, also known as filk, for a quarter century. He is known for irreverent humor and a wide knowledge of science fiction, fantasy, genre films, comics, and gaming. He has won over a dozen Pegasus Awards, the premier award for filking, and is an instigator of the Funny Music Project.

    Leslie Turek has been active in Boston-area fandom sinze Noreascon in 1971, and she was chair of Noreascon 2 in 1980. For Noreascon 3 she edited the Hugo-winning fanzine Mad Three Party and developed the Concourse, a social area in the convention exhibit hall; she also designed If I Ran the Zoo, a game to help conrunners understand the range of alternatives and consequences involved in starting and running a convention. At Noreascon 4 she created the tradition of First Night, a huge icebreaker event on the first evening of the convention.

    Sasquan is looking forward to having this fun group of fan favorites as guests of honor at the 2015 Worldcon.