The book has been in the works in many forms since 2013, originally started as a small comic zine which covered Baltimore's con tradition, it has since expanded to be the first indepth narrative history of America's convention scene from all the roots that led to Worldcon to Comic Con's massive dominance and popularizing geek culture to the current online and virtual cons brought on by the 2020 pandemic.
Our first draft of the book was a Kickstarter Staff pick but unfortunately we did not get the funding needed to take time off to finish the book. This may have been a blessing as it has given us more time to collect more data, research more events, and interview more people, expanding the contents of the book more than we originally planned. With the 2020 convention season cancelled we are using our savings to try and finish the next draft of the book and hopefully get a finalized preview copy ready for cons by 2021-2022.
We have a rough chapter by chapter outline of the book we have previously previewed at past events, but as the chapters keep changing as we realize some parts could be collected together while others have grown so much they need their own sections. We can however break down the periods and topics covered here for those interested in the slides below. If you feel you have some stories, information, or photos to contribute to the cooridanding sections, feel free to contact us.
Book mock up not final design.
Our con history zines and comics.
The Early Science FIction Fandom
The first few chapters break down the history of fandoms from early civilization to the Victorian period and how they influenced the formations of modern fandoms leading to our focus on the Golden Age of Science Fiction and the Comics Golden Age of 1938.
During this period we examine early fan meet ups and how they eventually evolved to become the roots of the modern convention scene with specific focus on Worldcon cementing many elements that we can identify with the modern con scene including: the use of the hotel for hosting, panel tracks, early cosplay, and interactions between fans and professionals.
We later look at the relaxacons like Midwestcon, the birth of the Hugo Awards, and filk music tradition which is the root of convention musical events.