Corflu 34

Jan. 15th, 2017 07:36 am
randy_byers: (shiffman)
I've purchased a membership to Corflu 34 in LA. I'm curious what kinds of pre-convention plans people have.

Corflu XXX

May. 6th, 2013 11:04 am
randy_byers: (shiffman)

No doubt this is a post that will evolve over time as I add more details (and pictures, as it turns out) and recover more memories. I'm utterly exhausted at the moment, although I do actually feel much improved over yesterday. The tl;dr version is: Corflu XXX was hosted by Dan and Lynn Steffan in Portland, Oregon over the weekend, and it was a total freaking blast. Wish you'd been there, if you weren't; it was terrific to see you there, if you were.

The rest is noise ... )


Apr. 29th, 2013 08:30 am
randy_byers: (shiffman)
Corflu XXX is next weekend in Portland. I'll see some of you there, no doubt. I've already seen Eve and John Harvey, who were full of news about their new house in France. Tonight is a gathering at Pike Place Brewing where more Brits should be in evidence. Not sure if there will be any more pre-Corflu festivities. I'm heading to the convention on Friday.
randy_byers: (shiffman)
Corflu XXX logoAndy Hooper writes: "I've finally begun listing items for auction on eBay in order to raise money for Corflu XXX next May. Search for items with the phrase [Corflu 30] in the title. Right now I have 18 lots listed, almost all of them fanzines published some time in the past 30 years. To me, the prizes of the group are 9 issues of Jerry Kaufman and Suzle Tompkins' fanzine MAINSTREAM, all in one lot for a minimum bid of $4.99. I've intentionally started with common fanzines and less valuable items, in the assumption that we'll build momentum as I gather more donations from generous friends of Corflu."
randy_byers: (shiffman)
Corflu XXX logo

Dan Steffan is a great artist and a great designer, and he's been busy creating promotional material for Corflu XXX, which he and Lynn are holding in Portland, Oregon next May.

On the left is the Corflu XXX logo, featuring a figure by Bill Rotsler.

Also now available at the Corflu website is a PDF of the latest flyer for the convention. Please feel free to print it out and spread it far and wide. Or just download it and look at the nifty old photos of fans in drag.

Hope to see you in Portland next year!
randy_byers: (2010-08-15)
So yesterday was the watershed moment for the reason I couldn't go to Corflu this year.

Every year around this time I have to send some files to an outside vendor who runs a website for us that allows students to sign up for the commencement exercises in June. This involves gathering some files from the three branch campuses, and I spent last Thursday and Friday consulting about and collecting the files. On Monday I imported them into the proper databases, reformatted them, refamiliarized myself with how everything fit together, and generally made sure that everything was ready to roll. What I had to do yesterday was pretty simple, basically running macros and then reformatting the resulting tables into tab-delimited text files. I also wrote up the procedures for all this, because I've become acutely aware of being the only one who knows how to do this job now.

These days I frequently feel like a monkey running around in the ruins of a previous civilization. I run databases that my forebears wrote -- forebears who were lost to death and budget cuts. These databases are often black boxes to me. I don't understand how they work, I just run the macros. There are some, like the commencement databases, that I've worked with enough that I have some understanding of them and have even made modifications. But if I were asked to write them from scratch, I probably wouldn't be able to do it. My expertise is really in the underlying data structures, the institutional knowledge and policies -- the "business rules" as they apply to student data. That's valuable knowledge, for sure, but we are sorely missing somebody with in-depth knowledge of SQL and/or statistics.

Well, that's more about work than I had intended to get into. I was explaining why I couldn't make it to Corflu this year. I did manage to join the fun in the virtual consuite/program a time or two, and many thanks to the folks who made that possible. I won a FAAn Award this year for Alternative Pants, so I also thank those who voted for me, bless your hearts -- and thanks also to carl for the great design and layout work on the zine. This award was in a new category for one-shots or fanthologies. This ended up being a weak category, and one that a lot of people didn't understand, although certainly there was another strong candidate in Travlin' Jiant, the collection of Art Widner's writing put together by Kim Huett, which came in second. Andy Hooper indicated during the ceremony that the category wouldn't be continued, and I would agree with that decision. It's true that single issue fanzines rarely get award recognition, and are expressly excluded from Hugo consideration, but there probably aren't enough of them in any given year to support their own award category. Still, it was nice to get the recognition, and it also reminded me of what a great trip that was. It reminded me of all the friends I visited and hung out with on my travels, and it reminded me of previous fun times, like the 2002 Corflu where I met the [ profile] fishlifters, the 1996 Worldcon where I met [ profile] gerisullivan, or my 2003 TAFF trip where I met [ profile] reverendjim and [ profile] pingopark.

It also made me think about my vague idea of going to Novacon again this year. I didn't make it to Corflu and won't be making it to the Chicago Worldcon, so Novacon beckons again. However, lately I've been feeling like that wasn't going to happen, both because I'm feeling so wiped out from work and because my sister and I are planning to take Mom to France in 2013 for her 80th birthday, and then it's the London Worldcon in 2014, and maybe another British Corflu in 2015. How many years in a row can I afford to travel across the Atlantic? But another Belgian adventure sounds like just what the doctor ordered right about now. Wouldn't that be a nice reward for all my hard work and stress this year?

Still dreaming ...
randy_byers: (2010-08-15)
I went to a meeting last week about scheduling for the Time of Chaos that happens every spring around Commencement sign-up, and as I looked at the dates when I had to do important, mission-critical stuff, I had the sinking feeling that it might coincide with Corflu Glitter next year. I finally checked today, and sure enough Corflu is happening right smack in the middle of the time when I'll be needing to run test extractions and then the actual extraction. I suppose I could pop down to Las Vegas Friday night after work and return on Sunday, but my gut reaction to this idea is not good, no fun, ixnay. I think Corflu will be a no-go for me next year.

Ugh. And fuck.

Well, maybe another reason to go to Novacon then.
randy_byers: (2010-08-15)
Now that I've gotten the anxiety out of my system, I can maybe report a few highlights of the recent Corflu, although I guess if I were doing a proper con report I'd merge those comments with these. E Corflu Vitus was held in Sunnyvale, California this year, right next to San Jose in the heart of Silicon Valley. "That's where the first Fry's store was," said [ profile] magscanner as we drove by on Thursday. It wasn't until I arrived Wednesday night and drove through the area in a taxi that I really understood that I was in Silicon Valley, with many a familiar tech logo gleaming in the night. Then I arrived at the hotel, the Domain, and suddenly realized why it was called that. Duh.

The glory details ... )
randy_byers: (2010-08-15)
I can't resist the subject-line, because it makes me think of the Mel Brooks parody of Corflu, but that's not really what this is about.

I generally had a terrific time at E Corflu Vitus. I saw lots of friends, got plenty of egoboo, ate good food, and felt the pulse of fandom hot beneath my finger. Yet my experience was colored throughout by a fair amount of anxiety. This is not exactly unusual for me at a Corflu. Typically I experience a slightly desperate feeling of not being able to give everybody the attention they deserve. This time it seemed stronger, more like performance anxiety, and more challenging to my sense of self-worth. Which is very strange to me, because as I said before, I got a lot of love from my friends, and yet somehow -- sometimes -- I was turning it into a feeling of loneliness and unworthiness.

My only theory -- going with that sense of performance anxiety -- is that I was feeling that I needed to be on at all moments. It was like being on stage 24/7. There was a certain manic quality to the fun, and I think I must have been feeling brittle. I remember that in the last couple of days before the convention, I wasn't sure I was ready for the level of energy you find at a Corflu. I wasn't sure I was up for it.

Well, I don't want to make too much of it. It was only one thread in the fabric. But it has lingered in the days since, so there's something going on there. It reminds me of the mixed sense of towering elation and creeping uncertainty of my earliest conventions, and I thought I'd left that uncertainty far behind as my network of friends expanded. It would be a pity if it resurfaced at this late date, especially if it's because the network has actually gotten too big for my introverted self.
randy_byers: (cap)
I am crap -- horribly crap! -- at taking pictures at conventions, so once again (as at Novacon and SFContario) I come away with just a few shots from pre-convention activities. This is a disorganized look at several shots I took in Sunnyvale, or actually mostly outside Sunnyvale. My brain is too dead to be doing this now, and yet I cannot stop myself. Caveat voyeur.

At St George Spirits on Alameda Island, we found Graham Charnock's brain in a jar. This is a reminder: Graham Charnock for TAFF!

Strange days )
randy_byers: (cap)
Okay, I'm hitting the road. The sky-road to Sunnyvale. I'll be back in Seattle on Monday.
randy_byers: (shiffman)
I'm going to Corflu this weekend. Here's my schedule:

Panel on fanzine reviews. Don't know when this is or who else is on it. Do you?

That's my schedule. Are you an important person? Would you like my autograph? Would you like a copy of my incomprehensible van Vogt mix-up? Are you on on the panel too? Can I be your sock-puppet?

This post has No Adult Content.
randy_byers: (cap)
Okay, I've now booked my flight to San Jose and modified my hotel reservation: I'll be flying in the night of the 9th, instead of on the 10th.
randy_byers: (cap)
Well, I've finally booked my hotel room for Corflu in February, arriving on the 10th and departing on the 14th. Now I just need a flight to San Jose.
randy_byers: (2010-08-15)

This is a shot of me and the [ profile] fishlifters at Novacon with a copy of our labo(u)r of love, Slow Train to Immortality, which was an anthology of British fanwriting from the years 1995-2009 that we produced for Corflu Cobalt earlier this year. Photo is by Corflu Cobalt chairman Rob Jackson.
randy_byers: (shiffman)
If you're not able to make it to Corflu Cobalt in Winchester this year (as I'm not), please consider buying a supporting membership. It's a good thing to do just on general principle, but there's also something in it for you. As announced in the second progress report, there will be an anthology of contemporary British fanwriting given to all members of the convention, including supporting members. The fanthology will be edited by Claire Brialey, Mark Plummer, and myself, and it will contain British fan writing and art from the period 1995 to 2009 (thus acting as a follow-up to the outstanding Time Bytes fanthologies produced by Lilian Edwards and Christina Lake for the 1995 Worldcon). This is pretty much exactly the era in which I became active in fanzine fandom, so it has been fascinating to look back at the fanzines that hit me right between the eyes as I was forming my first impressions of the field. There's plenty of great material for us to choose from, and I'm confident the resulting anthology will be a lot of fun to read.

Supporting memberships are cheap, too: £10 (UK) or $15 (US). If you are outside the UK or the US, I'm sure something can be arranged. Consult the Corflu homepage for instructions on how to join. A good time guaranteed for all!
randy_byers: (Default)
The Corflu Zed regress report is now available as a PDF at The 36-page issue includes covers by John D. Berry; con reports by [ profile] wrdnrd and Nic Farey; Andy Hooper's collection of selections from past Corflu reports, which was read by a cast of thousands at the convention; a song by Ian Sorensen that never happened; a follow-up to the Seattle Fanzine Renaissance panel by Jerry Kaufman; plus debriefings by Andy, Suzle, Mark "Cry for Me" Manning, and your humble correspondent. The beautiful design and layout is by [ profile] holyoutlaw. (Happy birthday, Luke!)

(Dancing Walrus by Kellipalik Qimirpik at Inuit Gallery of Vancouver.)


Mar. 19th, 2009 08:03 am
randy_byers: (Default)
Empty nest.
randy_byers: (Default)

Update: Awards administrator Hal O'Brien has posted the complete results of the 2009 FAAn Awards voting to [ profile] corflu. He has also posted a photo of Ulrika O'Brien's marvelous award plaque.


Mar. 16th, 2009 01:20 pm
randy_byers: (Default)
I'm back from the convention, but I am complete toast. It seemed to go very well. I have a few lost and found items, including David Levine's scarf and Gregg Trend's lens cap. I think I'm just going to crash for a while!

Thanks, everyone, for what was essentially a crisis-less good time.




randy_byers: (Default)

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