Apr 9 2018

It’s Con or Bust auction time again…


Yes, it’s that time of year, and the Con or Bust fundraising auction starts tomorrow.

As usual, I’ve contributed some items to the auction; not as usual, the items do not include my lovely and artistically handbound blank journals.

Because, alas, I’ve developed this wicked case of eczema on all the working surfaces of my hands — and that’s all the detail I’m going to give you on that because trust me, you do not want to know more.  It’s both creepy and gross.  I see a doctor on Tuesday.

So, I can’t actually use a needle and thread, which I need to make the journal insides; and the fine paper that I use for the covers and endpapers would suffer by being handled by me in my current state.  Also, messing around with glue would be a very bad idea.

Fortunately, I have other things I can contribute to the auction:

That’s a full set, autographed. Plus map.  You may embiggen for better detail.

All four books, and a separate map of Rowan’s world as of Volume 4.

It’s not obvious from the photo, but The Steerswoman is indeed somewhat smaller in size than the other three books.  So, if you desperately only want to have perfectly-matching copies, this is is not the set for you.  Or, you could get it anyway (proceeds go to Con or Bust, a very good cause indeed ), and when the larger-format version is released, pick up one of those to complete your set!

(I do plan to correct the size in the future, but it’s not yet high on my list of things to do that do not involve writing.   I really do need, for the next few months, to focus on generating actual art.)

Also available from me:

Wait, is that a first edition?

The Lost Steersman, autographed, in its original version published by Ballantine/Del Rey.   Hey,  now that new trade paperback versions of all the books exist, this has become a collectors item!   And I do so love the cover of this book…

There are plenty of other cool, rare, fascinating, helpful, peculiar, lovely and/or neccessary things you can get at the auction.

Let’s just pick a few examples at random:

Memorabilia from the Farscape TV show, consisting of an actual signed script, and a piece of the living spaceship, Moya.

Personal consultation on your podcast idea, with an actual podcasting professional.

Wait — a balcony stateroom for two on the 2019 JoCo Cuise?  Seriously? Holy  crap.  Well, minimum bid for that is $2000.  But if I had the bucks to spare, that’s what I’d go for.  The JoCo music/SFF/Nerd-dom cruises are legendary.

Also: any number of books, including rare and signed, but also including random and quirky.  Story critiques by actual professionals.  And bunches of handicrafts.  Chocolate!

Or just browse through all the available items at the  Con or Bust auction site.

This is why I support Con or Bust:

a) Everyone should read science fiction and fantasy.  SF/F is actually good for you!   It increases your intellectual and imaginative skills, deepens your understanding of the world, and can be a great source of joy.

b) Everyone who likes SF/F should go to a convention at some point in their life, multiple times if possible.  At conventions, you meet other like-minded people, people who take delight in the same things you do — and you learn that you are not alone.  There are lots of us.  And we want you.

c) People of color, and especially African-Americans, are very often actively discouraged by educators and American society in general from pursuing intellectual goals, or seeking intellectual values.  I view this as a crime, and a tragedy.  And it also means that many potential readers — and potential writers — of SF/F are directed away from our field, away from all its delights and benefits.   But by helping people of color get to conventions, Con or Bust is acting directly against those negative messages.  It says, explicitly: you do belong here.

Someday, Con or Bust won’t need to exist.  This is not that day.

Meanwhile, I  want more: I want more readers, more writers, more voices telling me tales of wonder.  Con or Bust helps that happen.  So, I help Con or Bust.