Welcome to The Science Fiction Dispatch!

FeaturedWelcome to The Science Fiction Dispatch!

Conventions will be the maiin focus of this blog because they are so much fun! They offer opportunities to dress up if you want to, meet celebrities, mingle with other fans, and buy cool stuff!. I will tell you when and where many Atlanta and other conventions are and share photos and more . I will also share news about sci-fi, fantasy, comic bookand anime books, moviesTV, and more.

Join the fun!

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WHOlanta 2019: What a Goodbye! (and a fond look back)

After 15 conventions,  WHOlanta (formerly TimeGate) has ended. The last one wrapped on May 5,  and it went out with a bang and not a whimper!

My husband and I have had the privilege of covering the convention for the past 10 years and every year I have thought “This is the best group of guests imaginable,” and it always was. This year we got to meet the charming and feisty Janet Fielding, who played Tegan. Tegan was the companion to the 4th and 5th Doctors from 1981-1984.

  1. janetfieldingjanet                                   Janet Fielding

Ms. Fielding is not the first of the Doctor’s Companions we have met at WHOlanta. We also met Sophie Aldred, who played Ace to Sylvester  McCoy’s Doctor, Louise Jamison, who played Leela to Tom Baker’s Doctor, Nicola Bryant, who played Peri to Colin Baker. In addition, we met the Mistress, Michelle Gomez, and Camille Coderi, who played Jackie Tyler, Rose Tyler’s mother. We were also delighted to meet Colin Baker, the sixth Doctor, twice! Z(n addition, we heard wonderful stories from writers. men who portrayed monsters including Cybermen and Daleks, producers, script editors, and so many more. All of them were wonderful and their stories were among my favorites. This year, those included  Brand Manager Edward Russell, monster actor Jon Davey, Robert Allsop, and Jason Haigh-Ellery of Big Finish.

KODAK Digital Still Camera

Colin Baker

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Camille Coduri

Then there were the regulars, such as Lt. Moxie Magness,  Chief Cosmetologist on the Starship Enterprise, who wandered her magnificent way into a Doctor Who convention and stayed. Moxie is a marvel and we are going to miss her so much! There’s also Louis Robinson, Ken Spivey and so many more!

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We feel so honored that Alan and Susan gave us the chance to be part of this all these years. How we will miss the convention but the WHOlanta Facebook family will go on!

221B Con Atlanta GA April 5-7 2019

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221B Con is a Sherlock Holmes convention that takes place in Atlanta every year. It was held on April 5-7 of this year at the Atlanta Airport Marriott.

The convention covers everything about Holmes Over the past few years,221B Conhas grown in size each year, with a very loyal following who return each time and new people who go home and spread the word. Many of the panelists are authors either of books. or of “fan-fic,” which is stories written by fans which are very popular online. Others are podcasters, such as the Baker Street Babes and the men who present “Geek Vs.”

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This is truly a convention for people who love Sherlock and enjoy using their brains. That is not to say it is not fun, because it is. But there is not an emphasis on cosplay, although it is welcome. Gaming is minimal, although if you ever see a quiz show being presented by Geek Vs. anywhere, including 221B Con, hurry to get involved (the whole audience participates.) It is overall a quieter convention, but deeply satisfying.

Another thing that convention attendees like is acquiring new stuff, and this convention always has a great vendor’s room. It is also a good source of free stuff, or “swag.” This year, for instance, the Tea Room, which is a place to rest during the convention, had many free books, two of my favorite words in the English language!

If you like Sherlock in any form: books, movies, television series, or anything else, you will love 221B Con! See you in Atlanta next year!

 

AnachroCon 2019 Feb. 15-17

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Dr. Mozingo-Gorman

From February 15-17 at the Atlanta Airport Hilton the past and the present visually collided, with ladies in bustles and men in suit pant and vests rubbing elbows with others in jeans and sweaters, It was time for AnachroCon, the convention for fans of time travel, history, science, literature, and science fiction.  There were subject areas (‘tracks”) for all of these, and kids’ programming as well. Families and individuals could also play in the game room at any time, day or night. Vendors sold jewelry, books, leather goods, and clothing. It was a marvelous time!

The guests sharing their knowledge in presentations this year included author Stephanie Osborn and her husband who created balloon hats and animals for all the children and some adults  Lee Martindale was there, an author and beloved staple of Atlanta conventions. Others who fans look forward to each year are astronomer and mead maker Philip Sacco and Dr. Dea Mozingo-Gorman, a forensic anthropologist who shared glimpses into the far distant past.

For those whose interest lies in cosplay, there were tracks for costuming and fabrication. Dr. Who fans had their own track. There were dances and music from special guest Tuatha Dea. There was even a car show!

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There was so much more to see in do during these three magical days. AnachroCon happens every year around this time. If you’ve ever wanted to travel in time, plan to attend next year!

 

DRAGON CON ANNOUNCES DRAGON AWARD WINNERS

Over 11,000 Voters Cast Ballots in the Third Annual Dragon Awards Recognizing

The Best in Books, Comics, Games and Filmed Entertainment

 ATLANTA – September 2, 2018 – Dragon Con, the internationally known pop culture, sci fi, fantasy, and gaming convention, announced the winners of its 3rd annual Dragon Awards, a fan’s choice awards program to recognize the best in books, comics, games, and filmed entertainment.

More than 11,000 fans cast ballots for Dragon Award winners among 94 properties in 15 categories covering the full range of fiction, comics, television, movies, video gaming, and tabletop gaming.  Winners were announced on Sept. 2 at the 32nd annual Dragon Con in downtown Atlanta.

All fans – not just Dragon Con members or attendees – are invited to select the Dragon Award winners by voting on the annual Dragon Awards ballot.

Final voting was held via the dedicated Dragon Awards website, and the voting period ran from August 7 to August 31. The ballot was selected in an open nomination process in which fans nominated their favorite properties. The nomination period ran from early April until July 31. The best and most popular of the nominated properties were elevated to the ballot.

The Dragon Awards were introduced in 2016 as part of the 30th anniversary of Dragon to meet the need for a fan’s choice award.

And the winners are …

Best Science Fiction Novel

Artemis by Andy Weir

Best Fantasy Novel (Including Paranormal)

Oathbringer by Brandon Sanderson

Best Young Adult / Middle Grade Novel

Children of Blood and Bone by Tomi Adeyemi

Best Military Science Fiction or Fantasy Novel

A Call to Vengeance by David Weber, Timothy Zahn, and Thomas Pope

Best Alternate History Novel

Uncharted by Kevin J. Anderson and Sarah A. Hoyt

Best Media Tie-In Novel

Leia: Princess of Alderaan by Claudia Gray

Best Horror Novel

Sleeping Beauties by Stephen King and Owen King

Best Comic Book

Mighty Thor by Jason Aaron and James Harren, Marvel Comics

Best Graphic Novel

Brandon Sanderson’s White Sand Volume 1 by Brandon Sanderson, Rik Hoskin, and Julius M. Gopez, Dynamite Entertainment

Bst Science Fiction or Fantasy TV Series

Game of Thrones, HBO

Best Science Fiction or Fantasy Movie

Black Panther directed by Ryan Coogler

Best Science Fiction or Fantasy PC / Console Game

Middle-earth: Shadow of War by Monolith Productions

Best Science Fiction or Fantasy Mobile Game

Harry Potter: Hogwarts Mystery by Jam City

Best Science Fiction or Fantasy Board Game

Red Dragon Inn 6: Villains by Slugfest Games

Best Science Fiction or Fantasy Miniatures / Collectible Card / Role-Playing Game

Magic: The Gathering Unstable by Wizards of the Coast

 

MULTITUDES MAKE THE ANNUAL POP CULTURE PILGRIMAGE TO DRAGON CON

 I am working on my article about Dragon Con but in the meantime, here is an official press report:

 More Than 80,000 Joined the Fun in Downtown Atlanta to

Meet Their Favorite Actors, Authors, Artists, and Other Creators

 85,000 Raised for Official Charity Literacy Action, Inc.

 ATLANTA – September 3, 2018 – Dragon Con, Atlanta’s internationally known pop culture, fantasy, and sci-fi convention, attracted an estimated 80,000 people for the five-day celebration.

“We are proud to have organized an exciting convention that gave fans an opportunity to show off their spectacular costumes, make new friends, and meet their favorite creators. These are the reasons fans come back to Dragon Con year after year,” convention co-chair Rachel Reeves said. “Dragon Con has always been focused on delivering an awesome fan experience. We are perfectly comfortable with this year’s attendance.”

Fans came from around the world and all 50 states, with this year’s convention attracting people from as far away as Australia, New Zealand, Japan, and other Pacific Rim countries.

Some of this year’s top guests include Once Upon a Time’s Jennifer Morrison, Ant Man & The Wasp’s Evangeline Lilly, Luke Cage’s Mike Colter, and Gaten Matarazzo and Caleb McLaughlin from Stranger Things.

In addition to Ant-Man and The Wasp and Stranger Things, other movies and television shows made in Georgia were well represented including Avengers: Infinity War,Guardians of the Galaxy vol. 2Jumanji, and CW’s Black Lightning. Fans also had a chance to talk with creators from Smite, perhaps the most popular video game to come out of Georgia.

Artemis, the latest book from Andy Weir, whose The Martian was turned into a major motion picture, collected a Dragon Award as the best Science Fiction Novel of the past year.  The Dragon Awards are the only fan’s choice award in fandom, with more than 11,000 people casting a ballot this year.

The convention’s newest track, Diversity in Speculative Fiction, attracted standing room only crowds to many of its panel discussions.

In its fundraising efforts, Dragon Con raised at least $85,000, including the convention match, for its 2018 official charity, Literacy Action, Inc., which helps build better futures for undereducated adults in the Atlanta area by teaching literacy, life skills, and work skills that empower them to reach their highest potential.

The convention has already selected it’s 2019 official charity. The American Heart Association’s Georgia Chapter will be the official charity, in honor of Thom Trainor, who was the long-time director of the convention’s Comics and Pop Artist division, who passed away this summer.

“Thom’s love of comics and art helped shape our comics and pop art programming into the unique experience it is today,” Reeves said.

In the months leading up to the 2018 convention, Dragon Con Superheroes community service program, volunteers and fans delivered more than 8,500 books for Literacy Action, supported Literacy Action’s Friends and Family Day graduation ceremonies by hosting games and serving the event’s meal, and gave a women’s shelter a top-to-bottom spring cleaning for Partnership Against Domestic Violence.  Since 2014, Dragon Con Superheroes have contributed more than 2,900 hours to Atlanta-area non-profits.

LifeSouth, which has organized the convention’s annual Robert A. Heinlein “Pay It Forward” blood drive since 2002, held another successful drive. This year, some 3,000 donors contributed nearly 6,000 units of blood and blood products.  The annual drive – consistently ranked as the largest convention-based blood drive – benefits LifeSouth, which serves more than 40 hospitals in the Atlanta area and 110 hospitals in the Southeast.

About Dragon Con

Dragon Con is the internationally known pop culture convention held each Labor Day in Atlanta. Organized for fans, Dragon Con features more than about 3,500 hours of comics, film, television, costuming, art, music, and gaming over four days. For more information, please visit www.dragoncon.org and follow us on Facebook and Twitter.

DRAGON CON’S DRAGON AWARDS PUBLISHES ITS 2018 BALLOT

 

Fans-Focused Awards Recognizes Excellence in Fifteen Categories of Fiction,

Comics, Gaming, and Filmed Entertainment

 Third Annual Awards Will Be Announced at Dragon Con over Labor Day Weekend

 

ATLANTA – August 7, 2018 – Dragon Con’s Dragon Awards, a fan-chosen awards program to recognize outstanding achievement in science fiction and fantasy literature, comics, gaming, and filmed entertainment, has published its 2018 ballot.

The Dragon Awards are decidedly a “fans’ choice” award. All fans – not just Dragon Con members or attendees – are invited to select the Dragon Award winners by voting – for free – on the third annual Dragon Awards ballot.  The full ballot can be viewed here:  (link)

All voting will be done electronically and only via a ballot emailed to each confirmed voter.  To vote, fans must register on the Dragon Awards website: (link) Ballots are then emailed in batches every few days through August.

Fans have until Friday, August 31st at 11:59 p.m., Eastern, to register.  Voting ends 24-hours later on Saturday, September 1st at 11:59 p.m., also Eastern.

Winners will be announced on Sept. 2rd at Dragon Con, which will be held August 30 to September 3, 2018 in Atlanta.

“Fans – the people who not only read, watch, and play, but also love, science fiction and fantasy – are in the best position to recognize this year’s most beloved works,” said Pat Henry, president of Dragon Con, Inc. “When a work is recognized with a Dragon Award, it means it captured the imagination of a substantial number of voters.”

The Dragon Awards were introduced in 2016 as part of the 30th Anniversary of Dragon Con, Atlanta’s internationally known pop culture, fantasy, sci-fi, and gaming convention. More than 8,000 people voted for their favorite works in the 2017 campaign.

To accommodate as many creative genres as possible, awards will be given in each of 15 categories covering the full range of fiction, comics, television, movies, video gaming, and tabletop gaming.

The ballot was selected in an open nomination process.  Using the dedicated Dragon Awards website, fans were invited to nominate one (and only one) of their favorite properties in any or all the award categories.  Nominations ran from early April until July 20 The best and most popular of the nominated properties were elevated to the ballot.

Further details are available on the awards website awards.dragoncon.org. Please direct all inquiries to dcawards@dragoncon.org or mail them to: Dragon Awards, PO Box 16459, Atlanta, GA  30321-0459 USA

About Dragon Con

Dragon Con is the internationally known pop culture convention held each Labor Day in Atlanta. Organized for fans, Dragon Con features more than about 3,000 hours of comics, film, television programming, costuming, art, music, and gaming over four days. For more information, please visit www.dragoncon.org and follow us on Facebook and Twitter.