Meet Our 2023 Toastmaster!

Meet Our 2023 Toastmaster!

Halito! Hello! When Jennifer Liang asked me to be Toastmaster for 2023 I said yes almost instantly. Attending JordanCon caused many new beginnings for me. I can’t imagine the last decade of my life without the connections and opportunities stirred by the winds in Dunwoody, GA.

 

This will be the 15th year for JordanCon. The 10th anniversary of A Memory of Light and the first season of the Wheel of Time show were two pivotal moments in the WoT fandom. How will the next few turnings of the wheel change the fandom and JordanCon?

 

JordanCon’s 5th year was a turning point for many fans and attendees, including myself. A Memory of Light was newly published. An ending had occurred. All of Team Jordan and Brandon Sanderson were attending. Leigh Butler, leader of the Tor Wheel of Time Reread, was the Toastmaster. A large number of the Leigh’s Loonies, my online fandom group, were attending for the first time. I told my spouse I had to go, for “It might be my only chance to ever meet them all!” 

 

How I laugh at my “only chance” comment now. JordanCon friends became a new family. Since 2013, I’ve attended all but one year. The weekend energizes me in ways hard to put into words. The friends I have online every other week are next to me and we can just talk, or hug, or chill together in person. This joy is shared by all who post using #IsItAprilYet. 

 

Since the 5th year of JordanCon, the community has grown in multiple ways. I thank the community for enabling my growth as well. The confidence I gained in becoming the (former) Workshop Director and a panelist filtered into other aspects of my life. From sharing my fan art food creations, to sharing my opinions and writings. I went from reading Tor.com blog posts to writing articles for them. I went from entering the costume contest to judging the contest. I went from a book lover to a beta reader for multiple best-selling authors. My younger shy dyslexic self could never have imagined being an active part of creating a novel, let alone over a dozen. Parts of the last ten years boggle my mind, while also bringing me great joy.  

Deana wearing her Veil cosplay.

Now I get to share a part of this joy as Toastmaster of JordanCon. The Toastmaster is the master of ceremonies. They help kick off the fun and welcome everyone to the convention. I remember feeling thrilled while watching Leigh Butler give her welcoming speech. It was the start of an amazing weekend. I hope to start the 15th JordanCon on a similar entertaining footing. JordanCon has found a wonderful recipe for success, and I plan to highlight several flavor notes as Toastmaster. 

 

JordanCon is about welcoming people to the buffet table. This includes our amazing Guests of Honor. As this year’s Toastmaster, I consider it an honor and privilege to be able to interview this year’s author Guest of Honor, Wesley Chu. I’ve been a fan of his for years, since reading his Tao novels and his season 12 co-host role on Writing Excuses. His newest novel, The Art of Prophecy, is his “love letter to the wuxia genera.” It is the start of a very promising journey. 

 

Equally impressive is our artist Guest of Honor Omar Ryyan. His art is full of whimsy, grace, and fantasy creatures. His work reminds me of the best of Romantic era paintings. My costumer’s heart delights in the fine detail he pours into clothing, accessories, and finer details. What a delightful addition his work will be to the Art Show! 

 

Welcome home to JordanCon everyone. I look forward to sharing the community table and ribbons with everyone in 2023. Come talk to me about your favorite flavors, cuisine or literature, your choice. 

 

By Deana Whitney

New Member Mondays: 2023

New Member Mondays: 2023

It is February 2023, and I am sure some of you are wondering “Where the heck are the New Member Monday posts?!”

Well, we are finally getting those started!

Now, as a New Member you may be wondering, “What under the Light is a ‘New Member Monday’?”

It is a series of blog posts written by the New Member Services Team (Ebony Adomanis and Arthur Gibson) to inform our newest members (and maybe some of our more experienced members) about the different aspects of JordanCon to put them at ease and help them get super excited about attending.

We will have New Member Monday blog posts about the following topics (in no particular order):

  • Traditions – It is JordanCon’s 15th Anniversary so this one will be fun!
  • Costume Contest
  • Charity Auction
  • Art Show
  • ConSuite
  • Gaming
  • Schedule
  • Volunteering
  • Member Engagement
  • Last Minute Reminders

While these are the topics we have planned, there is definitely room to add some, so let us know if you have a topic or area on which you would like more details!

In addition to our New Member Monday blog posts we will be bringing back Virtual Q&A Sessions. This will be a chance to interact with JordanCon Staff members, other new members, and our more experienced members. For 2023 our Virtual Q&A Sessions will be:

  • Saturday, February 18th 2:00 pm – 3:30 pm (EST) 
  • Saturday, March 11th 12:00 pm – 1:30 pm (EST) 

(Don’t worry, we will send information out about these as we get closer to the dates.)

So sit back and get ready to learn about all things JordanCon. If you have any questions or suggestions, just shoot us an email at newmemberservice@gmail.com.

 

JordanCon 2023 Memberships and More Are Coming Soon!

JordanCon 2023 Memberships and More Are Coming Soon!

Hello, JordanCon family!

April may still be months away, but the time to start preparing for JordanCon 2023 is quickly approaching. In fact, you’re going to want to set aside some time at noon (Eastern Standard Time) on October 15th. Why?

Memberships

Memberships will become available on our website at noon on October 15th. To prepare, go ahead and make yourself an account so you’ll be ready to log in and buy your membership as soon as they are up for grabs. Keep in mind that you won’t get a physical ticket in the mail, and don’t stress when you see that your purchase says “pending.” It will say that until the event is over in April.

JordanCon Hotel Room Block

Hotel reservations for the JordanCon room block will open at the same time (noon on October 15th), and the link including our group discount will be available here on our website. With everything we’re planning, you’re going to want to be on-site as much as possible, so go ahead and grab your room as soon as you can!

T-shirts and Anthologies

Not only are we releasing the information for memberships and the hotel, but we’re also going to make the JordanCon 2023 T-shirt and anthology available at the exact same time. This year you’ll be able to go ahead and purchase your membership, shirt, and anthology together in one order. It will save you all some time, and it will also ensure you have everything locked in early. Please remember that both of these items will need to be picked up at JordanCon 2023.

#IsItAprilYet?

It’s not quite time to start packing your bags, but set a reminder for noon on October 15th. You’re not going to want to miss a minute of this year’s con, so pick up everything you need to be ready for April.

The JordanCon 2023 Anthology Call for Submissions (Stories and Art)

The JordanCon 2023 Anthology Call for Submissions (Stories and Art)

Calling all Authors and Artists!

The JordanCon 2023 Anthology Submissions are now open!

Every year JordanCon publishes an Anthology featuring guests and attendees of the convention. All proceeds from the sale of the anthology go toward supporting the JordanCon Charity. We are looking for short fiction (under 7500 words), novellas (12,000-20,000 words) and full color, interior art.

  • Fiction submissions are due by August 30, 2022.
  • Art submissions are due by November 1, 2022.

The title of the JordanCon 2023 Anthology is “The Leaf Does No Harm.” We are looking for stories and art that plays with the theme of non-violence. Examples could be pacifism, oaths to not kill or do harm, unlikely friendships, dedicated kindness, or appeals to peace. This list is not exhaustive, but non-violence needs to be central to the story or artwork in some way. Stories and art must also fall within the categories of Science Fiction, Fantasy, or Horror, meaning that it must contain elements of one or more of these genres.

There are three submission forms, so please check the eligibility requirements to make sure you are using the correct form. Full submission guidelines are in the forms. Please be sure to read them. If you have any questions, please email Anthology AT JordanCon DOT org.

If you have never been a Guest of the convention, nor were you in the 2022 Anthology as an author, you can submit here:

2023 Attendee Author Submission Form

If you have been a Guest of the convention before, or you were in the 2022 Anthology as an author, you can submit here:

2023 Prior-Guest Author Submission Form

If you are submitting art, you can submit here:

2023 Artist Submission Form

JordanCon Statement Regarding Faith Hunter and Richard Fife

JordanCon Statement Regarding Faith Hunter and Richard Fife

JordanCon is aware of the statements made by Richard Fife regarding an incident involving Faith Hunter at JordanCon 2022. This statement addresses both the specific incident and JordanCon’s process for addressing attendee safety.

 

The Incident:

JordanCon will not comment on the merits of Richard’s allegations against Faith except as follows:

  • Richard’s statements in his post are consistent with a report he made to JordanCon authorities.
  • Faith Hunter self-reported certain conduct to JordanCon authorities and her public comments to date are consistent with what she self-reported. JordanCon has no further comment on the degree to which, if at all, Faith’s self-report aligns with Richard’s version of events.
  • JordanCon spoke with every known witness to / person involved in the incident. JordanCon will not comment on the identities or statements of the persons JordanCon spoke to, and JordanCon will not comment on any ultimate findings of fact.
  • Faith and JordanCon mutually agreed that she would not attend in the future.

 

JordanCon’s incident response process:

JordanCon takes attendee safety seriously, for all of our members, vendors, and guests. To that end, JordanCon has drafted, implemented, and trained its staff to follow specific incident response procedures. These procedures trigger when any attendee notifies any staff member that an incident involving harassment or unwanted touching may have occurred. The allegations of Richard’s report fall within this scope.

 

JordanCon’s procedures, which are publicly available at this link, are guided by several principles:

  • All staff take a harassment training session and pass a test each year before they are allowed to pick up their badge.  
  • Investigations are conducted by experienced HR professionals.
  • Anyone who makes an allegation deserves to be taken seriously and protected with whatever level of confidentiality they are comfortable with.
  • Protective and corrective measures are not binary and can be tailored to fit the circumstances of a particular situation, including the desires of the complainant(s).

 

It is true that JordanCon does not make public statements on allegations, findings of fact, or determinations of culpability. There are several reasons for this:

  • First, the obvious: JordanCon seeks to avoid legal risk, and it is the Convention’s right to avoid that risk.
  • More importantly: JordanCon sometimes encounters situations in which it uncovers facts, beyond those alleged by a specific complainant, from sources who very much prefer to stay out of public discourse. Such situations can be complicated, messy, and unique. Without commenting in any way whether this applies to the incident in question, we are reluctant to comment publicly, even on cases where those concerns are not present, so that our approach is consistent. Put differently: some stories are not our stories to tell, and some complainants explicitly request that we not tell their stories. Some hold the point of view that JordanCon carries a megaphone that can amplify a call for justice. That may be true. However, there are other such megaphones and platforms. We are the ONLY entity that can maintain the privacy of JordanCon complainants, and above any policy favoring public discourse we must prioritize removing any barriers complainants may feel when deciding whether to take the risk of making a report to begin with.

 

JordanCon will not have further comment on this incident.

 

JordanCon 2022 Covid Exposure Update

JordanCon 2022 Covid Exposure Update

We have now had multiple attendees report positive Covid test results. Thank you all for doing your best to follow our safety procedures, which hopefully helped to limit exposure. With these reports, it is likely safe to say that all areas of the event had some measure of exposure and no one area has been identified as having a higher concentration of risk over another. Keep in mind that it may take several days from exposure before you see positive test results, so we encourage everyone to continue to get tested and to follow their local laws and CDC guidelines.

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