Programming Participant Biographies

Arabella Benson
Arabella is surrounded by books and fabris and her brain swells with ideas. Alas her sewing room is a disaster area and there are never enogh hours in the day. Even though her time is consumes by a job, her bank account remains empty. Her reach has been known to exceed her grasp, but she rarely lets reality rain on her parade. Her costuming is done in fits and starts with supplies and techniques made up on the fly. That and a lot of help from her friends, and her husband Thomas.
Thomas Benson

Jeff Berkwits
Jeff Berkwits has written about vintage science-fiction books, music, and film for dozens of Internet and print periodicals including Science Fiction Weekly, Locus Online, Cinescape, and Filmfax, among others. He was also the last editor-in-chief of Amazing Stories magazine. Jeff currently writes two columns for each issue of SCI FI magazine, and works as a marketing consultant with various entertainment and space-related clients.
Amy Berner
Amy Berner pops up in various places with reviews, columns and essays, primarily covering genre television and books. She co-wrote The Great Snape Debate with Orson Scott Card and Joyce Millman for Borders Press, and her essays have appeared in several Smart Pop Books anthologies, including Five Seasons of Angel, The Anthology at the End of the Universe, Alias Assumed, Farscape Forever, Neptune Noir (Veronica Mars), Getting Lost, and In The Hunt (Supernatural). Her most recent project, the unofficial companion book Filled With Glee, is due out in November 2010.
Marc Biagi
While seen on stage and on-camera, this fan-gone-pro actor is more often HEARD doing character voice acting in video games, animation, education, commercials and more and has been doing so for more than a decade now. A new children’s animated series will hit the market within the year and he’s even had a feature animation that was at Cannes (though not on the main screen). As a life-long fan, he’s been involved in conventions for almost 30 years & has been an active RPG gamer for even longer. You can check out for info on recent work (that he can talk about without violating an NDA).
Chaz Boston-Baden
Chaz Boston Baden – proprietor of “Hazel’s Picture Gallery” containing thousands of fannish photos; created another adult use for Lime Jell-O using tequila, circa 1992; has been mentioned in the “Playboy Advisor” column twice; organized an ice cream social with a “Hell Freezes Over” theme sponsored by “Good Intentions Paving Company” and “Handbasket Tours & Travel”; invented “blue boards” to to give fans a safe place to post signs for parties; and originated the Registration Apron. His most recent major project has been to launch a new fannish anime convention, called Anime Los Angeles. His website is
Kathleen Bradean
Award winning author Kathleen Bradean’s stories can be found in Golden Crown Winner Best Lesbian Fiction 08 (Bedazzled Ink), Haunted Hearths and Sapphic Shades (Lethe Press), The Sweetest Kiss: Vampire Tales (Cleis), EPIC Winner Coming Together: Against the Odds (Phaze), Lamdba Finalist Where the Girls Are (Cleis), and many other anthologies. She blogs weekly for Oh Get A Grip, and reviews erotica monthly at EroticaRevealed.Com and Erotica-Readers.Com.
Eben Brooks
I am “The Working Class Superhero”, and I’m not afraid to say what I feel, both in my songwriting and in my life. I’m a political, social, and environmental activist; I’ve participated in beach cleanups, breast cancer research fundraisers, war protests, civil rights demonstrations, and animal rescue events. I even once organized a rally at my Congresswoman’s office because no one else would volunteer to do it.

In addition to being the singer/songwriter for The Eben Brooks Band, I am a writer, a photographer, and a solo artist, often partnering with my dear friend and fellow singer/songwriter Allison Lonsdale to do shows. Most of all, I am a lover of life, and I hope that my music conveys that love to everyone who listens.

Eric Chamberlin

Andrew Clark

John DeChancie
John DeChancie, the author of numerous novels, short stories, and articles, is best known for his Castle Perilous series of fantasy novels and, in the science fiction field, his Starrigger/Skyway trilogy. He lives in Los Angeles, where he is working on screenplays and teleplays.
Cris A. Fitch
Cris Fitch (MIT ’84) is an expert in the field of Artificial Intelligence, and was significantly responsible for bringing Machine Translation (SYSTRAN) to the Internet in the mid-1990s. He also has a deep and abiding interest in spaceflight and physics. He works with students in Robotics and Engineering at High Tech High Media Arts, and does independent research and development as he pleases. He likes to think deeply about issues in mankind’s technological future, including the transhuman condition.
Lynn Flewelling
Lynn Flewelling is best known for her internationally acclaimed Nightrunner Series which features Seregil and Alec, named by Romantic Times as “two of the most memorable heroes in fantasy.” Her first novel, Luck in the Shadows, was a finalist for the Compton Crook Award and made the list for Locus’ 1996 Best First Novels. Since then her books, including her the Tamír Triad, have been nominated several times for the Spectrum Award and others. Her two series are published in over a dozen languages, and in audio and e-book formats. In September, 2010 she published her first collection of Nightrunner short stories, Glimpses. She currently lives in Redlands, California with, Douglas, her husband and main muse.
James Floyd
James Floyd is a local fan and is currently the vice president of San Diego Fan Force, San Diego’s Star Wars fan group. He is also one of the co-creators of the San Diego Rocket Race (, an annual urban puzzle adventure race for sci-fi fans since 2006, and has developed races and photo scavenger hunts for large and small conventions, including “The Bounty Hunt”, a 700 player series of races at Star Wars Celebration V in 2010. He is a also a blogger for, and even made a small contribution to the official Star Wars canon, having provided the official first name of a background character in Revenge of the Sith.
Sharon T. Gaffney
Author of the e-book “China Harbor: Out of Time”  found on  Degrees in Chemistry and Physical Chemistry(think quantum mechanics and lasers) and a past Adjunct Professor at the Community College level.  And then my life took a radical turn when I got fibromyalgia (FMS).  Metaphor for my life: “While hiking in the Himalayas, I was overcome by an avalanche and nursed back to health by Tibetan monks using Yak milk poultices.”  If only my life was really this normal.  And if only quantum mechanics was the strangest thing I’ve ever seen.  My journey has led me to alternative healing therapies like acupuncture and an exploration of many things Chinese.   Driven by an insatiable curiosity about this world and its inhabitants I am a grown-up Alice fearlessly exploring its strangeness.  I expect this will get me into real trouble one of these days.  Until then I will continue to act like I know what I’m doing.
Kevin Gerard
Kevin Gerard lives in San Diego, California, with his wife and four furry children. He teaches sociology and statistics for the California State University. When not writing or teaching, Mr. Gerard enjoys walking the grounds at the San Diego Zoo, golfing with his father, hitting the waves and his favorite pizza hangout with his brother, nieces and nephews, and loving his wife and kids. He also enjoys playing Halo on the internet; look for him in the rocket games as Drazian, the destroyer in Breaking the Barrier.
Jean Graham
Jean Graham’s short stories and essays have appeared in the anthologies The Time of the Vampires (DAW Books, 1996, reprinted 2005), and Fantastical Visions I and II (, as well as in the online magazines Would That It Were, Firefox News and Coyote Wild and in print magazines such as Renard’s Menagerie, The Horror Show, Quest, Outlands and Chosen Haunts.  Her short story “Chain Letter Inc.” appears in the trade paperback anthology Under the Rose, currently available at and Barnes & Noble. She resides in San Diego, California, along with six cats, approximately six thousand books, innumerable dust bunnies, and her husband of thirty-three years, Chuck, who encourages, proofreads, and provides historical information for much of her fiction.
Jana Hallford
Jana Ondrechen Hallford is an artist, writer and filmmaker based in the San Diego area. She has a b.a. in fine art from Cal State San Bernardino and shows her work in international juried competitions. She and Neal Hallford are co-authors of Swords and Circuitry: A Designer’s Guide to Computer Role-Playing Games. Jana is a writer and producer on “Witch Creek,” an independent horror film from Swords & Circuitry Studios.
Neal Hallford
Neal Hallford is a twenty year veteran of the computer gaming industry, and has served as a designer and writer on a number of well known titles including Might & Magic III: Isles of Terra, Betrayal at Krondor, Dungeon Siege, Lords of Everquest, Champions of Norrath, and Supreme Commander.  In 2008 he was approached by the U.S. State Department to design two cellphone titles, X-Life: Driven and X-Life: Babangar Blues, which were used as support tools in a U.S. diplomatic mission to the youth of the Middle East. His games have been adapted into several different forms of media including a New York Times Bestseller and the movie In The Name of the King: A Dungeon Siege Tale. Along with his wife Jana, he is the co-author of Swords & Circuitry: A Designer’s Guide To Computer Role-Playing Games, a how-to manual on game development which has been used on college campuses around the U.S. (It is still among the highest user-rated game development books to be found on Neal has been a featured speaker at several conventions, and bi-annually hosts a panel on writing for games at Comic-Con International, the largest popular media convention in the United States. In addition to his work in games, Neal is also a independent film producer and director, and owns the production company Swords & Circuitry Studios based in San Diego, California. Recently he served as a film judge for the Inland Empire 48 Hour Film Project. Prior to entering game development, Neal worked in radio as both a disc-jockey and audio engineer, and produced a series of weird tales radio dramas for a station in Tulsa, Oklahoma while still a teenager. He holds a degree in radio/television/film production from the University of Oklahoma.
John Hart
John Hart is a special effects makeup artist and prop maker. He has worked for film, theatre and haunted attractions. His latest project was the Clockwork Goblin makeups for the Labyrinth of Jareth Ball.
James H. Hay
James Hay is a San Diego fan, costumer and trivia master. He has programmed the local SF convention ConDor for many years and programmed the last San Diego Westercon. Additionally, in 2011 he will be programming the Gaslight Gathering (a steampunk con) and World Fantasy convention. In his spare time he works as a chemist for a local biotech firm.
Nancy Hay
Nancy has been an sf fan for over 35 years, mostly in costuming and helping out at cons. Steampunk and knitting are her current passions so many of her new costumes have knitted accessories.
Samantha Henderson
Samantha Henderson’s short stories and poetry have appeared in Realms of Fantasy, Strange Horizons, Clarksworld, Weird Tales, Chizine, Fantasy, Lone Star Stories and Abyss and Apex, Goblin Fruit, Mythic Delirium and Stone Telling, as well as the anthologies Running with the Pack, Steampunk Reloaded and the upcoming Lace and Blade III. Her dark Victorian fantasy Heaven’s Bones was released in 2008, and together with Kendall Evans she is the winner of the 2010 Rhysling Award in the long-form category. “Bottles,” the film based on her short story of the same name, was the winner of Best Fantasy Short and Best Screenplay at the 2010 DragonCon Independent Film Festival. She lives in Covina with her family and various other creatures.
Frank L. Hood

Calvin Johnson
Calvin W. Johnson is a professor of physics at San Diego State University, where he teaches a course on science and science fiction. He has also had fiction published in venues such as Analog and Realms of Fantasy.
Steve Jones

Kirsten Imani Kasai
Kirsten Imani Kasai is the author of numerous dark fantasy, fiction and erotic horror shorts. Her novel Ice Song, about the adventures of a gender-swapping single mother and the half-human inhabitants of the frozen Sigue, won the 2010 San Diego Book Award for Best Science Fiction/Fantasy. The sequel, Tattoo, will be published in July 2011. Visit her at
James Kerwin
In addition to numerous film festival grand jury prizes, James Kerwin has earned distinctions such as the Accolade, the Telly, the Axiem, the Panavision New Filmmaker Grant, and the R.C. Norris Screenwriting Award. He was named “Best Director” and “Best Screenwriter” by New York Visionfest for his recent science fiction noir feature film “Yesterday Was a Lie,” released by E1 Entertainment. Kerwin’s live stage credits range from classical (Shakespeare’s “Venus and Adonis”) to modern (Amber Benson’s “Albert Hall” and David Ives’ “Seven Menus” and “Mere Mortals” for Noah Wyle and Daniel Henning’s Blank Theatre Company.). He was listed among the Los Angeles Times’ “Faces to Watch” as part of the Lone Star Ensemble theatre group, and his innovative directing style has been honored by critic Paul Birchall for two consecutive years in Back Stage Magazine’s “Best of the Year” list. Kerwin’s work is studied in university curricula and has been analyzed by scholarly organizations and journals such as the Shakespeare Association of America and Shakespeare Newsletter. He has instructed production and cinematography labs at T.C.U., served as a guest artist at U.T. Austin, and spoken on filmmaking in venues as diverse as San Diego Comic-Con, Space Camp, and the University of Arizona’s Center for Consciousness Studies.
Dani Kollin
Dani Kollin is the guy who hangs out and writes with the guy who answers to “Not Dani” and looks like he should be riding with a biker gang or bouncing at an all night strip club (as opposed to what he actually does – which is writing hard science fiction novels). Dani grew up thinking he was going to be an artist and so set forth with every intention of earning a splattering-cat-poop-on-canvas-or-getting-pummeled-with-sharp-objects-on-videotape art degree. Alas, there was no money in defecatory flinging and so Dani decided on graphic design – because that’s where the money was at. And had he stayed there he might even be making some now. Instead he chose to start a career in writing. He was actually quite content as an advertising copywriter until in desperation to find a profession that would have someone ask him for his autograph he challenged his brother, Eytan (aka “Not Dani”) to write a book together. Surprisingly (given their history of having absolutely nothing in common except exceedingly warped senses of humor) Eytan agreed. Their first novel, The Unincorporated Man, was published by Tor in 2009 and won The 2010 Prometheus Award for best novel of the year. Their second book, The Unincorporated War released this past May with The Unincorporated Woman releasing next August. Not willing to leave well enough alone, both Dani and Eytan host a weekly SF&F webshow called
Eytan Kollin
Eytan Kollin was born in a mid-sized American city back when flower power and Star Trek were new ideas. He had a typical American existence of going to a public school where he pretended to learn from people who pretended to teach. In between, he did the typical growing-up things of a future sci-fi author: role playing games, drugs, sex, movies, television, sex and lots of science fiction reading. In a humorous turn of events, he became one of the mindless drones of bureaucracy, a public school teacher. He found a lot of teaching could be accomplished as long as it didn’t get in the way of the job. Then his brother came along and said, “Hey story man, we should write a book together.” Eight years later in April 2009, The Unincorporated Man was published by TOR. Happily this did well enough that a second book, The Unincorporated War came out in May of 2010 and the first book won the 2010 Prometheus Award for best novel. A third book,  The Unincorporated Woman will come out in May 2011 and four short stories will be released soon (if anyone wants to buy them).  So by some strange twist of events this has turned into a prolific career for the Kollin Brothers. Eytan hopes this turns into a profitable career as well (Bwa-ha-ha, ha-ha, ha-ha).
Judy Lazar
I have a PhD in microbiology and work as a senior medical writer at Halozyme Therapeutics, a San Diego biotech company.  I’m a card-carrying skeptic of the paranormal and pseudoscience, i’ve been a choral singer and percussion player, and I live in San Diego with the world’s greatest dog, a clowder of cats, my burgeoning collection of perfume atomizers, and far too many books.
Alison Lonsdale
Allison Lonsdale ( wants to be a memetic virus when she grows up. She makes a living as a technical editor and makes the living worthwhile by singing her original songs about sex, science, and the supernatural in coffee-houses. Her fiction has appeared in the anthologies Best Transgender Erotica, Blood Surrender, and From Porn to Poetry, and will also be in the upcoming Best Erotic Fantasy & Science Fiction. In her spare time she invents new genders and rehabilitates domesticated memes for release into the wild.
Laura Luchau
Teacher,and long-term fantasy and science fiction reader. Anime enthusiast now 25-years strong, active in local anime fandom and convention-staffing. Currently indulging in online fanfic in various media fandoms, supernatural romance novels and… beading. Currently participating in a Bujold-based RPG.
Chase Masterson
Named one of the world’s “50 Sexiest Women” by Femme Fatales Magazine, Chase Masterson was first recognized for her break-out role as “Leeta” in the final five seasons of Star Trek: Deep Space Nine. Known to millions of fans worldwide, TV Guide’s online readers poll voted Chase the “Favorite Science Fiction Actress on Television,” Sci-Fi Universe Magazine honored her as one of the “Top 20 People to Watch in Hollywood,” and in December 2009 AOL named her one of the “Ten Sexiest Aliens” in television history.

Chase has held recurring roles on General Hospital and Live Shot; guest starred on programs such as E.R., Presidio Med, Sci-Fi Vortex, Sliders, and Acapulco H.E.A.T.; and served as host of Sci-Fi Entertainment, Showtime: Nighttime, and Encore’s STARZ On Demand. Her film credits include Yesterday Was a Lie, Robotech: The Shadow Chronicles, Stephen King’s Sometimes They Come Back For More, Robin Hood: Men In Tights, In a Moment of Passion, Married People Single Sex, Sammyville, Manticore, Chastity, Terminal Invasion, Creature Unknown, and Comic Book: The Movie. Chase’s recent producing credits include the documentary Through Your Eyes with Michael Madsen and David Carradine (featured twice on Dr. Phil), and the short L.A. Actors with Tony Shalhoub and Brandon Routh.

An accomplished jazz singer, she has received high praise for her music from magazines such as Film Score Monthly and Entertainment Today. Chase hosted her own weekly internet radio show on, and has been singing in USO Tours for the Navy and the Marine Corps. She was selected as one of the “Hot Leading Ladies” of film by Film Fetish for her role in Yesterday Was a Lie, and was named “Best Feature Film Producer” by the LA Femme Film Festival.

Best of all, “Chase Masterson” was recently the answer to a question on Jeopardy. (Well, that’s up there, anyway…)

Lynn Maudlin
Lynn Maudlin was born in Los Angeles to a physicist & an aspiring concert pianist and flung into SF by her older brother when he gave her a subscription to Analog in her early teens but she didn’t find fandom until 1982 when she landed at Mythcon XIII. Lynn spent 10 years on the Mythopoeic Society board of directors and co-founded their fiction zine, The Mythic Circle, with Sherwood Smith; she served four years as the North American Booking Officer for the Tolkien Centenary Conference (Keble College, Oxford, 1992) and has served on numerous other con coms and is once again serving on the Mythopoeic Society’s Council of Stewards as the Mythcon liaison steward. Lynn is a singer/songwriter, an artist, a writer, an editor, and occasional film producer. She loves to laugh but doesn’t remember jokes, is easily pulled into deep conversations about God and the Bible, and appreciates the obsession that is costuming. Lynn is proud she survived the 60s with most of her brain intact. She loves good food, good wine, and chocolate.
Todd McCaffrey
Todd Johnson McCaffrey wrote his first science-fiction story when he was twelve and has been writing on and off ever since.  Including the New York Times Bestselling Dragon’s Fire, he has written six books in the Pern universe both solo and in collaboration with his mother, Anne McCaffrey, appeared in many anthologies, most recently with his short story, Tree, in Writers for Relief: An Anthology to Benefit the Bay Area Food Bank (2007), and with The Dragons of Prague in Dr. Who – Short Trips: Destination Prague (2008).  Having completed two Pern books in collaboration with his mother, he is currently working on several non-Pern projects. Visit his website at
Christian B. McGuire
Christian B. McGuire is a reader, convention runner, and collector of chairs. So far his chair collection includes the first 12 Gallifrey Ones; Loscons 19, 21, 23, and 27; plus the 1999 NASFiC: Conucopia.
Kate Morgenstern
Starting at age 3, Kate has tried most techniques for fabric manipulation. Now a Master level costumer, she makes science fiction, fantasy and historical costumes—sometimes all in the same outfit. Co-founder of the Association for Costumers, Related Oddities, Ninjas and Yak Merchants, she does her best to live up to their motto, “Doing Our Part To Make Your Life A Little More Surreal.”
Cathy Mullican (Menolly)

Shweta Narayan
Shweta Narayan lived in India, Malaysia, Saudi Arabia, the Netherlands, and Scotland before moving to California. She writes speculative fiction from and about liminal spaces.  Her stories have been published in Strange Horizons, Realms of Fantasy, and the anthologies The Beastly Bride and Clockwork Phoenix 3, reprinted in The Apex Book of World SF and Steampunk II: Steampunk Reloaded, and long-listed for the Tiptree and British Fantasy awards.
James Nelson-Lucas
James Nelson-Lucas has been performing on stage since he was six years old, and has a wide variety of performing talents and educational skills to draw from. His diverse background in film, drama, improvisational performing, and communications, gives him a deep understanding of the nature of stories and how to tell them. Luckily for his audiences, his youthful passion remains. James truly wears many hats. He brings all these talents, skills, and experiences together in what he calls: James Story Magic!
Atanielle Noel Rowland
Illustrator and Author, ‘Languages of Tolkien’s Middle-Earth,’ ‘Speaker to Heaven,’ ‘Duchess of Kneedeep.’
Lisanne Norman
Born in Glasgow, Scotland, on 15th February, I was destined to be a Valentine present for my father but I had other ideas and arrived a day late. “Strong-willed, independent, a whirlwind, a dreamer, she lives in another world.” These adjectives followed me around from my earliest days. They were partly right: I had grander plans than a world, though, I was all ready creating the universe of the Sholan Alliance, where magic, Warriors, and science co-exist.

My imagination became reality after a fashion when I joined The Vikings, a national British re-enactment society, 32 years ago. For 19 of them I was very active as a skirmisher on the historical battlefields of Great Britain using either my double-handed steel sword, or as an archer with my reproduction laminated wooden recurve bow. I even ran my own specialist archery display team.

Due to an undiagnosed spinal defect, that part of my life has come full circle and my active battle days are unfortunately over. In 2004, my son and I moved the the United States where the warmer weather is kinder to me. Now it’s time to sit again and dream my dreams of magic and warriors and alien worlds. The eigth book in my Sholan Alliance series, SHADES OF GRAY came out on August 3rd and work is already well advanced on the ninth, tentatively called AVATAR. I also have outlines for a novel about my short story character, the thief Mouse, and her “small but very real demon” companion who feature in two of DAW’s anthologies by Martin Greenberg.

Ronald Oakes

Tara Oakes

John W. Oliver
A writer and ex-bookseller, John W. Oliver is a fan of all kinds of fiction but finds be spends most of his time with the fantastic and terrifying. His work can be found in Robots Beyond, and he’s a founding member of both the Pit and Pendulum Writing Groups. More information about him can be found at
Val Ontell
Our 2010 Conjecture Chair has been a fan for over 35 years. Her many con posts include chairing the 1986 and 1989 Lunacons and committee positions at local and regional cons, Westercons, and Worldcons. She is currently Guest Liaison for ConDor and Gaslight Gathering and Chair of the 2011 World Fantasy Convention to be held in San Diego on October 27-20, 2011. With her husband Ron, she was 2002 Lunacon Fan GOH. In her other life, she retired as a librarian at San Diego Mesa College on July 1, 2010 after 18 years there. Her 40 years as a librarian include twelve at Intermediate School 88 and eight at the Bronx High School of Science, both in New York City.
Stephen W. Potts
Stephen W. Potts teaches courses in science fiction, children’s literature, popular culture, and American literature at UCSD and SDSU. Over the past three decades he has published works of fiction and criticism, mostly in the realm of science fiction and fantasy. In his role as pop culture specialist, he has appeared frequently on radio and TV, for example, in the 2002 Bravo channel special From Page to Screen: Lord of the Rings. He is currently contributing editor for Armaggedon Buffet, an online journel of fiction and commentary.
Hector Reyes
Hector Reyes has been involved in the San Diego gaming and fandom community for 6 years. He has run and played in numerous tabletop games in San Diego including Vampire, Exalted, Scion and Cyberpunk 2020. He has played in nearly every Mind’s Eye Theater LARP in San Diego County since 2005. He is also the founder and Head Storyteller for Starlight Dream Productions, a troupe who has run the longest running Changeling The Dreaming LARP in San Diego. Hector is also the Convention Chair for San Diego’s 1st and only Japanese anime and manga convention, Anime Conji. Hector’s an active participant in almost every fandom convention in San Diego, and in the one he is not, he has friends who are. A good friend once quoted him saying “I don’t everyone, everyone just knows me.”
Robert J. Sawyer
Robert J. Sawyer is the author of Hugo Award-winner _Hominids_, nebula Award-winner _The Terminal Experiment_, and John W. Campbell Memorial Award-winner _Mindscan_, plus _Starplex_, _Frameshift_, _Factoring Humanity_, _Calculating God_, _Humans_, _Rollback_, and _Wake_, all of which were Hugo finalists.  Other awards: China’s Galaxy Award for “Most Popular Foreign SF Writer;” three Japanese Seiun Awards for Best Foreign Novel (for _End of an Era_, _Frameshift_, and _Illegal Alien_); ten Canadian Aurora Awards; plus _Analog_’s Analytical Laboratory Award, _Science Fiction Chronicle_’s Readers Award, and the Crime Writers of Canada’s Arthur Ellis Award, all for best short-story of the year.  His latest novel is _Wonder_.  Website:
Michael Siladi
Michael Siladi has been an active fan since 1973, when he attended his first convention, Equicon, in Los Angeles. He started working on conventions in 1975, and has been working on conventions ever since. He has been involved in all areas of convention operations, and was recently Chairman of BayCon 2008. He was also Chairman of Westercon 60: Gnomeward Bound, held at the San Mateo Marriott Hotel in July 2007.

Michael enjoys teaching others how to run conventions, and leads the occasional Conventional Wisdom, the San Francisco Bay Area Convention College. He served three times as Chairman of Construction, a predecessor to Conventional Wisdom. He was the Chairman of SMOFcon 17, the international science fiction and fantasy convention organizer’s convention, held in New Orleans in December of 1999.

He serves on the Boards of Directors of a number of fan-related corporations, including Artistic Solutions, Inc. (parent of BayCon) and the Society for the Promotion of Fannish Interests, Inc., (parent of Westercon 60 and of Conventional Wisdom). He has also served as a Director of the San Diego Speculative Fiction Society, Inc., (parent of Conjecture) and as a Director of San Francisco Science Fiction Conventions, Inc., parent of the 1993 and 2002 WorldCons.

Michael has been involved in the computer industry since high school, and has been an avid computer hobbyist since the dawn of the PC era. He is currently employed as a senior information technology professional for the University of California at Santa Cruz. In his spare time, his other hobbies include astronomy and photography. He currently lives in Mountain View with his girlfriend Alison Stern and seven cats.

Adina Sobo

Steam Powered Giraffe

Alison Stern

William H. Stoddard
William H. Stoddard has been writing for Steve Jackson Games since GURPS Steampunk came out in 2000. His latest book for them, a new edition of GURPS Low-Tech, is planned for release in hard copy late this year or early next year.
Paul Stuart

Jefferson P. Swycaffer
Jefferson P. Swycaffer is a fan/pro hybrid. His first publication credits were Dungeons and Dragons variants in Dragon magazine. He went on to have nine novels published, seven in the ‘space empires’ genre and two in the ‘urban fantasy’ genre.
Janet Tait

Linda Thomas-Sundstrom
Linda Thomas-Sundstrom is a published author in urban fantasy and paranromal romance, writing for three New york publishers. Besides trying to keep up with deadlines, she’s a teacher at a California university, handles programming for the Romance Writers of America, and lectures on writing.
Brad Tyler

Greg van Eekhout
Greg van Eekhout is the author of the fantasy novel NORSE CODE and the middle-grade novel KID VS. SQUID, as well as short stories appearing in publications such as Asimov’s, Magazine of Fantasy and Science Fiction, Realms of Fantasy, and several year’s best anthologies.
Vernor Vinge
Science fiction writer and five time Hugo Award winner.
Gerry Williams
Gerry Williams is a filmmaker with 16 feature films to his credit as Director of Photography and produces corporate/industrial films and commercials. He is also a human spaceflight advocate and is a founding member of both The Mars Society – San Diego and the San Diego Space Society. He publishes the and hosts the monthly Mars Movie Night and the San Diego Vintage Sci-Fi film groups.