(Progress Report 1 was mailed in November 1998 to members of WFC 1996, WFC 1997 & WFC 1998. This web version has been modified with changes, but please also check the rest of this web site for other additions.)
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World Fantasy Convention 1999
Progress Report 1

The 25th World Fantasy Convention

Our theme is "Voyages", many and varied. Quests literal, metaphorical, and personal can all be fantasy's roads. We'll talk about journeying and travelers, about territories, maps, and cartographers. We'll talk about the paths of fantasy literature and the evolution of the genre. And we'll trace the first quarter-century of the World Fantasy Convention itself.

We're planning two tracks of program, plus readings, all of the usual events (the Friday evening autograph reception, Sunday afternoon luncheon and award presentation, etc.), and a few special surprises.

The convention will return to Providence, Rhode Island, site of the first World Fantasy Convention (and the fifth and twelfth, as well) -- but this isn't the Providence you remember. It's a bright and attractive city, with walkways along the waterways, good restaurants, and a new (1993) Rhode Island Convention Center for our daytime program and exhibit space. Guest rooms will be available in both the new Westin Hotel (connected to the RICC by an internal corridor) and a comfortably refurbished Biltmore Hotel. The city is easily accessible by plane, train, and car.

Hotel information will be provided in a future Progress Report.

Artists and Dealers: please provide us with complete contact information, including address, phone number, and email if available. Details of space and rates will be sent to you as soon as they're available.


(limited to 850 attending members)


Supporting: $35 (US) throughout. Includes all publications as well as the right to nominate works for the World Fantasy Awards for 1999, 2000, and 2001.

Payment may be made by VISA or MasterCard, or by check payable to "MCFI" (US banks and funds only, please).

Massachusetts Convention Fandom, Inc. (MCFI) is a non-profit corporation organized to promote science fiction and fantasy through the sponsorship of conventions. We can be contacted at:

PO Box 1010
Framingham, Massachusetts 01701 USA

Our fax telephone number is: (+1) 617-776-3243
We're also on the Internet at: info@noreascon.org
Our Web location is: http://www.mcfi.org/wfc

Our Guests

(updated information and links to other sites are available on our Guests of Honor page.)

Patricia A. McKillip's The Forgotten Beasts of Eld won the first World Fantasy Award for Best Novel. She has gone on to bring us dozens of complex characters and worlds representing the best of high fantasy, from the Riddle of Stars trilogy to The Sorceress and the Cygnet, The Book of Atrix Wolfe, Winter Rose, and Song for the Basilisk.

Charles de Lint has defined the contemporary urban fantasy, in both the real cities of Canada and the imaginary city of Newford, with novels such as Moonheart and Jack the Giant Killer, and several World Fantasy Award nominees including "Paperjack" and "The Conjure Man".

Robert Silverberg has developed the territory outside traditional fantasy with everything from personal-scale works such as The Book of Skulls through Star of Gypsies, To The Land of the Living, and the epic Majipoor chronicles. He is also the founding editor of the New Dimensions series of original anthologies.

Leo & Diane Dillon have been creating award-winning fantasy art for over thirty years. Their work, in a wide variety of media, combines contemporary styles with influences from around the world, complementing everything from literate fantasies to folktales for children. They received the Caldecott Award for their artwork for Ashanti to Zulu and Why Mosquitoes Buzz in People's Ears.

Samuel R. Delany is known both as an author (The Einstein Intersection, the Nevèrÿon cycle) and as a teacher and scholar; his writings from The Jewel-Hinged Jaw to The New York Review of Science Fiction have extended the boundaries of criticism of fantastic literature.

John M. Ford is the author of The Dragon Waiting and "Winter Solstice: Camelot Station", both World Fantasy Award-winning works. He is also notorious as the improvising "Ask Dr. Mike", answering questions of science and philosophy with equal aplomb.

A Brief History of World Fantasy Conventions in Providence, RI

1975: The 1st World Fantasy Convention, at the Holiday Inn
Chair: Kirby McCauley
Theme: "The Lovecraft Circle"
Guest of Honor: Robert Bloch
Toastmaster: Gahan Wilson
Novel: Patricia McKillip for The Forgotten Beasts of Eld
Short Fiction: Robert Aickman for "Pages From a Young Girl's Diary"
Collection/Anthology: Manly Wade Wellman for Worse Things Waiting
Artist: Lee Brown Coye
Special Award - Professional: Ian & Betty Ballantine
Special Award - Non-Professional: Stuart David Schiff
Lifetime Achievement: Robert Bloch
Judges: Ramsey Campbell, Edward R. Ferman, David G. Hartwell, Fritz Leiber, Gahan Wilson
1979: The 5th World Fantasy Convention, at the Biltmore Hotel
Chair: Bob Booth
Theme: "Reunion"
Guests of Honor: Stephen King, Frank Belknap Long, Michael Whelan
Toastmaster: Charles L. Grant
Novel: Michael Moorcock for Gloriana
Short Fiction: Avram Davidson for "Naples"
Collection/Anthology: Charles L. Grant, ed. for Shadows
Artist: Alicia Austin
Special Award - Professional: Edward L. Ferman for F&SF
Special Award - Non-Professional: Donald H. Tuck
Convention Award: Kirby McCauley
Lifetime Achievement: Jorge Luis Borges
Judges: Poul Anderson, Terry Carr, Dennis Etchison, Elizabeth A. Lynn, Roy A. Squires
1986 The 12th World Fantasy Convention, at the Biltmore Hotel
Chair: Robert Plante
Theme: "From 'New Writers' to 'Old Masters' "
Guests of Honor: Ramsey Campbell, Charles L. Grant, J.K. Potter
Toastmaster: Douglas E. Winter
Novel: Dan Simmons for Song of Kali
Novella: T.E.D. Klein for "Nadelman's God"
Short Fiction: James P. Blaylock for "Paper Dragons"
Anthology/Collection: Robin McKinley, ed. for Imaginary Lands
Artist: Jeff Jones
Special Award - Professional: Pat LoBrutto for editing
Special Award - Non-Professional: Douglas E. Winter for reviewing
Convention Award: Donald A. Wollheim
Lifetime Achievement: Avram Davidson
Judges: Robert A. Collins, Ellen Datlow, Dean R. Koontz, Patricia A. McKillip, Charles de Lint

25th WFC Members as of 15 October 1998

(An updated membership list is available.)
Erik Arthur
Bonnie Atwood
Ted Atwood
Judy Bemis
Seth Breidbart
Ann Broomhead
Rebekah Memel Brown
James L. Cambias
Diana Cormier
James J. Daly
Charles de Lint
Samuel R. Delany
Steven desJardins
Diane Dillon
Leo Dillon
John R. Douglas
Fred Duarte
Jo Fletcher
George Flynn
John M. Ford
Pam Fremon
  Christopher Friedline
Esther M. Friesner
Jack Gonzalez
Karen Haber
MaryAnn Harris
Irene Harrison
Art Henderson
Becky Henderson
Lisa Hertel
Mark Hertel
Chip Hitchcock
Peggy Hu
Diane Kelly
Allan Kent
Elise Matthesen
Linda McAllister
Rich McAllister
Patricia A. McKillip
Scott Neely
Mark L. Olson
Priscilla Olson
  Tony Parker
Steve Pasechnick
Gary L. Plumlee
Faye Ringel
Mary Tafuri Ross
Marlene Y. Satter
Robert Silverberg
Davey Snyder
Carol Springs
Tim Szczesuil
Carolyn Tallan
Michael Tallan
Cecilia Tan
Patricia A. Vandenberg
David Weidl
Guest of RK Weiner
Robert K. Weiner
Gene Wolfe
Scott Wyatt

Why a Pineapple?

(Well, it's better than a duck. But really...)

In the days when ship captains were people of note in their home towns, it was customary for a captain who had returned from a long voyage to put a pineapple in front of his house. (This motif became permanent for those who grew wealthy from the sea; in Annapolis and Newport, among others, fine houses have wooden pineapples on the gateposts.) Simply read, it was a sign that the voyager was "at home", so the pineapple is commonly used as a symbol of hospitality.

More broadly, it meant, "I have returned from distant places with strange new goods", "I am available to talk about my voyage" -- and, on a more practical note, "I'm ready to do business about the goods I've brought back." All of these are appropriate extensions of our theme: we are all interested in the goods and experiences brought by returning voyagers, and many of us come to World Fantasy Conventions to do business over the results of our own voyages.

Our metaphorical pineapples are different in one particular: according to a Hawaiian friend, the finest pineapples are consumed as they're harvested and never make it out of the fields, but we hope everyone will bring their especially prized tales and experiences to this convention.

About Providence, Rhode Island

The city of Providence has strong ties to the fantasy genre. One of Providence's notable citizens was H.P. Lovecraft, who deeply identified with Providence, declaring it the only "livable" city.

Seeking to bring the wide-ranging scope of science fiction to the horror genre, Lovecraft was inspired by the Gothic-style College Hill atmosphere and the abundant colonial architecture. Providence was such an important city to Lovecraft that he chose "I Am Providence" as his epitaph.

Providence has many attractions for visitors to explore -- museums, theaters, historic sites, colleges and universities, an award-winning zoo, and world-class dining.

More information about the city will be in Progress Report 2, and can be found at http://www.ProvidenceRI.com/home.html.

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