Garth Spencer

Fans have been holding their own conventions, on an amateur basis, since at least the 1940s. These events have grown in size, complexity, and diversity, especially since the early 1970s, and some fans have seen the need to set on paper some notes about the convention-runners' art, particularly as science fiction conventions are rather different than mundane conventions.

One of the best sources of hard information and good ideas is SMOFCon, the annual December convention for conrunners, held in a different city each year. There are informative proceedings for several past SMOFCons, each available from a different source. Some regular fanzines have been good sources for conrunning information, such as Con-TRACT. A few Web pages offer useful resources, such as the SF-Lovers site (where you can see the "Baycon Bible" text) and especially Chaz Baden's collection at his Web site. A few articles on convention departments are offered here, plus an annotated bibliography of references and conrunning resources (*including Web links*), with the hope of meeting your needs.

Please bear in mind that this offering is a sort of smorgasbord; the only assumption is that you will pick and choose what you need, and adapt any recommended guidelines or procedures to your convention's circumstances. Also this is by no means complete, and is being modified and extended all the time. If you care to contribute. Hint, hint.

References on Convention-Running (A bibliography, with Web links). See my welcome page or my list of Web links for Web pages with more conrunning resources and links.

* Plus Selected Articles: *
-- "Care and Feeding of Media Flacks" by Richard Brandt
-- "Convention Chair's Checklist" by Bruce Farr
-- Fitch on Conventions (Don Fitch)
-- Thoughts On Cincinnati Game Cons (Al Macintyre)
-- On Convention Coordination Committees (in the U.S., Britain, and Canada)
* This article is a DRAFT and I would like your comments and corrections to it.
-- On Convention Publications (GS)
-- A Preliminary V-Con Planning Timetable (GS)
-- On Fanzine Rooms (GS)
-- Thoughts On Conventions (GS), from Scavenger's Newsletter (1987)
-- Readings #1: Constellation Con '83
-- Readings #2: Westercon 44
-- Readings #3: Pinekone II
-- Readings #4: The Northwest Convention League (this is now a link to their Web site, not to my outdated opinions.)
-- Readings #5: The Intersmof E-Mail List
-- Readings #6: Northstar 1 (GS)
-- Runte on Conventions (Robert Runte)
-- Stinson on Conventions (David Stinson)

NOTE: The Smofs e-mail list (not to be confused with Intersmof -GS) have been discussing the advisability of archiving many materials useful to convention committees. My hope is to represent many more materials on the improved bibliography, about December 1996. In the meantime you may wish to join the discussion group: e-mail and include the word "subscribe" in your message.

If you have any comments or corrections to articles I have written and posted here, or additional entries to submit to my partial bibliography of resources, please e-mail me at

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