Fan­ta­syCon 2014

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5- 7 Septem­ber 2014, York The Bri­tish Fan­tasy So­ci­ety de­scended on York for a week­end of books, live pod­cast­ing and… karaoke? Steven El­lis was there

Fan­ta­syCon is not the big­gest con­ven­tion in the cal­en­dar, but it does claim to be one of the friendli­est and this was in­deed the case. Some of the best and bright­est in the lit­er­ary world de­scended upon the his­tor­i­cal city of York for a week­end of fun, frivolity and a lit­tle se­ri­ous dis­cus­sion about the state of the sci- fi and fan­tasy genre.

The day­time sched­ule was packed with pan­els, read­ings and book launches while the night was filled with Paul Cor­nell’s game show, karaoke and more in­for­mal gath­er­ings. A par­tic­u­lar high­light was the first ever live per­for­mance of Emma New­man’s Tea And Jeop­ardy pod­cast. Emma, aided by her but­ler La­timer, sub­jected a very game Toby Whit­house to some tea, cake and mild peril with hi­lar­i­ous re­sults.

The event cul­mi­nated on the Sun­day with the Bri­tish Fan­tasy So­ci­ety’s an­nual awards ban­quet. At­ten­dees were treated to a slap- up meal while Cor­nell hosted the awards cer­e­mony with style and grace. Win­ners and nom­i­nees can be found on the BFS web­site.

At times Fan­ta­syCon seemed a lit­tle heavy on peo­ple from the world of pub­lish­ing, but that didn’t mean there wasn’t plenty for reg­u­lar pun­ters to do. There was hardly a mo­ment through­out the whole week­end when there wasn’t some­thing in­ter­est­ing, en­ter­tain­ing or in­for­ma­tive go­ing on, and at sev­eral points it was hard to pick which event on the sched­ule to at­tend.

Ev­ery­one was in good spir­its and al­ways up for a drink and a chat, from reg­u­lar at­ten­dees right up to the guests of hon­our, which in­cluded au­thor Kate El­liott and artist Larry Rostant. Char­laine Har­ris was on es­pe­cially great form, stop­ping to spend time with any­one who ap­proached her and be­ing gen­er­ally won­der­ful. From start to fin­ish Fan­ta­syCon 2014 was a thor­oughly en­ter­tain­ing week­end. www.british­fan­ta­syso­ci­

That’s fan­tasy magic be­ing weaved right there.

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