Announcing Can-Con 2018!

Hi everone!

We’re very pleased to announce the dates for Can*Con 2018! We’ll be back at the Sheraton in downtown Ottawa on October 12-14. Mark your calendars!

We’re very happy with last year! We grew 40%, reaching 350 attendees (!), more than 10% of whom were students. We’re staying downtown partly to not only entice tourists to our beautiful city, but also to remain accessible to our local community. Most buses lead downtown, after all!

We did notice last year that some panels were rather full and that some of our special guests (we love you, Tanya!), were sitting on the floor.  In an effort to curb that particular trend, we’ve rented more space in the Sheraton, so we have a spiffy room upstairs. This may mean an extra track of programming, or a torn down wall! (Programming and Corporate are in tough negotiations on that end.)

The new room is on the top floor, and we’ve updated our accessibility policy to reflect the new space.  We ask that everyone familiarize themselves with this policy and our conduct policy. These policies are part of what help us maintain a safe, inclusive and welcoming environment at our conference.

We’ve also secured a private space for agent and publisher pitches and the blue pencil café, instead of sticking people in the back of the vendors’ room behind (authentic!) vintage Chinese dividers. This also means that we have a few more space in the vendors room, so hopefully this year we’ll be able to accommodate everyone who wants to buy a table!

The con suite will be bigger, too, with both attached bedrooms opened up for milling and chatting. We do need volunteers there and at other on-site locations, so please let us know if you’d be willing to lend a hand at the convention. Even a couple of hours can really help us out!

You’ll note that registration prices went up a bit this year, for the first time in several years. We didn’t increase student pricing, but we did increase our adult weekend prices, since costs in downtown Ottawa have been on the rise.

This year, we’re also implementing a “pay it forward” model for those who are interested in helping out others. We strongly believe in hosting a very accessible con, which means welcoming people from all backgrounds and financial situations.  We’ve never wanted money to stop any new or aspiring writer from joining us, so we’ve traditionally comped attendees who needed that consideration. If you’d like to help us support writers or readers who need that extra help, you can now donate when you buy your own pass.  That money will only be used to support those who need it.

Registration is already open, so go today to take advantage of our early bird rates!  The Sheraton hotel block is also open, so you can also book your hotel room. For those of you eager to get on programming, we’ll open up panelist applications soon.

We’ll provide more updates soon! Keep an eye out on this space and our social media, and help us spread the word like fine unchunky jelly.

See you in October!

Marie Bilodeau, Co-Chair, Corporate                                     Derek Künsken, Co-Chair, Programming

Aurora Nomination

As Co-Chairs of Can*Con, we are overwhelmed to have received our third straight Aurora Award nomination in the category of Best Fan Organizational. Can*Con is a little con that is consistently punching above its weight. Can*Con 2016 was proud to feature four Guests of Honour: Tanya Huff of DAW Books (Author), Sheila Williams of Asimov’s Magazine (Editor), Sam Morgan of the JABberwocky Agency (Agent), and Eric Choi of the Canadian Space Technology Field (Science).

The entire ballot of the 2017 Aurora Award is very strong and we are humbled to be sharing the ballot with so many luminaries. We would like to congratulate past and present Can*Con guests and panelists! Congratulations to Gerald Brandt, Madeline Ashby, A.M. Delamonica, Robert J. Sawyer, Brent Nichols, Ed Willett, Robert Runté, Hayden Trenholm, Amal El-Mohtar, Kari Maaren, Dominik Parisien, Mike Rimar, Claude Lalumière, Mark Shainblum, Susan Forest, Lucas Law, Dan O’Driscoll, S.M. Carrière, Derek Newman-Stille, Chadwick Ginther, Sandra Kasturi, Matt Moore, Nicole Lavigne, Charles de Lint, and Steven Erikson!

There are too many volunteers to list individually, but special thanks to Nicole Lavigne, Brandon Crilly, Evan May, Caycee Price, Morris Rothman, Hayley Halloran, Jaggy Sue, Dario Sciola and many others! You make the conference happen! 🙂

Last year was the first time we’d brought an Agent Guest of Honour (and the second time we’d brought a New York editor!), because we believe that the writing community in Ottawa deserves to meet New York industry professionals. And we brought Tanya Huff and Eric Choi because Ottawa fans ought to be treated to the best and brightest of Canada’s fantastic literature and science communities.

We are very pleased to be welcoming to Can*Con in 2017 our Guests of Honour Steven Erikson (Author), Sheila Gilbert (Editor) and Kim-Mei Kirtland (Agent) over the weekend of 13-15 October, 2017. Please spread the word and bring a friend to the fun!

Derek Künsken                          Marie Bilodeau
Co-Chair (Programming)        Co-Chair (Corporate)

Mark your calendars!

Ottawa’s twice-Aurora-nominated literary science fiction, fantasy and horror conference will run 13-15 October, 2017 at the Sheraton in downtown Ottawa. The Sheraton is more accessible and has more space for us to grow, and we especially worked hard to get a larger dealer’s room. The Sheraton is 4 blocks from Elgin, 4 blocks from Parliament and the river, 7 blocks from the market, and is right on the bus routes!

We’ll be announcing our Guests of Honour over the coming months, but you may want to book your room now. Our room block last year filled and we had to ask for additional rooms! For information on how to book your hotel room right away, visit our Location page! For American attendees, as of the time of this post, if you take about 25% off all the costs, you get pretty close to the cost in US dollars.

Marie and Derek are sharing the chairship again this year, with Derek as Co-Chair of Programming and Marie as Co-Chair Corporate. We’ll be streamlining more of our processes, so we’ll need people helping on marketing, fan and community outreach, a website team, on-site con-running, drivers, supply-getters, tech support, etc. If you’d like to volunteer, please write to with a listing of why you’d be great for a particular spot!

Stay tuned to this website, the Can*Con Facebook page and the @CanConSF twitter feed. The programming team will be confirming panelists and sending out information on what to get ready for 🙂  We’ll have an Author GOH, an Editor GOH, and a Literary Agent GOH, and we’ll continue to have a strong expert track of university professors and researchers!

Lastly, the Can*Con Co-Chairs, special guests and volunteers will be promoting the conference in a number of places in the coming months, so if you’re at any of the following, come say hi: ChiSeries in Ottawa, Ad Astra in Toronto, Boréal in Québec, the Nebula Conference in Pittsburgh, Limestone Genre Expo in Kingston, and When Worlds Collide in Calgary.

This year is going to be even better than last and we can’t wait to make our announcements!

Can-Con Team