…ConZealand. With the prospect of New Zealand hosting the World SF Convention (Worldcon) in 2020, nobody has been prepared to put their hand up to organise a separate NZ national convention (natcon) in 2020. CoNZealand (the Worldcon in question) has generously stepped in and offered to host the key elements which are needed to constitute a natcon. This offer and the alternatives were discussed extensively at Geysercon and CoNZealand’s offer was accepted and ratified at the SFFANZ official bid session at Geysercon.
There are quite a number of consequences to this. We will try to spell out the key ones below:
- If you are a member of CoNZealand, you are a member of the 78th worldcon and a member of the 41st NZ natcon. I.e. you are a member of both. There are no separate “natcon” memberships – no separate “worldcon” memberships either for that matter.
- CoNZealand will host the three events which are required of a NZ natcon. I.e. The Sir Julius Vogel award ceremony, the SFFANZ AGM, the SFFANZ Bid session for the 2022 (and possibly 2021) natcons. All CoNZealand members will be able to attend these three events, but as is always the case only SFFANZ members will be able to vote at the AGM.
- The Sir Julius Vogel award (SJV) nomination and voting process will all take place well before the commencement of CoNZealand. Only the announcement and presentation of the awards will take place at the ceremony. In other words, no voting at the convention – voting will be managed electronically.
- This means that anybody who is a CoNZealand member at the time voting takes place is eligible to vote in the SJVs. SFFANZ members will, as always, be able to vote as well regardless of whether they are members of CoNZealand or not. This also means the voter packet will be available to all CoNZealand members – a great way to showcase local talent.
- The three events (and only those three events) mentioned above will be able to be attended by eligible non-CoNZealand members. In practice this means SFFANZ members who are not members of CoNZealand can attend their events. SJV nominees may be able to attend the award ceremony as well – this hasn’t been confirmed yet. The final details of eligibility and mechanism are yet to be confirmed.
One final point. Nobody came forward at GeyserCon to run the 2021 NZ natcon either. If you are interested in putting together a bid, get on to it now and put your team together. Then get in touch with SFFANZ as soon as possible. They can organise an online bid session to get you accepted as the official natcon – that would be ratified at CoNZealand.
CoNZealand is the 78th World Science Fiction Convention. It will be held in Wellington, New Zealand from July 29 – August 2, 2020.
ConZealand have made an announcement regarding changes to membership rates that will take place in mid-June this year.
If you are thinking of attending the Worldcon here in Aotearoa, then have a read and you might be able to save a few dollars. There is a payment plan available.
Also, extra points if you can spot the rather glaring typo on the media release – unless, of course, they have fixed it by the time you read this.
In case you missed it, Air New Zealand has replied to George R R Martin’s reply to their advertising which invited George to take a free trip to New Zealand. George suggested that Air NZ give a bunch of American fans a free trip instead. Well Air NZ has now come back offering 20 fans that free ride.
Did you follow that? There will be a test later.
And no, we don’t know how you can apply for the free trip.
Air New Zealand made a cheeky offer to George R R Martin to fly him free to NZ to finish The Winds of Winter. You can see that video here.
Of course, it is just a piece of advertising, but GRRM took the time to reply, saying that he has been to New Zealand a number of times and listed some of the places he has been – you can read his reply here. He also plugged his toastmaster role at CoNZealand. Thanks for the shout-out George!
In case you were wondering, George first came to New Zealand to be a guest at Construction, the 1998 New Zealand national convention. He shared the bill with, among others, Neil Gaiman. Can you imagine what a big deal getting those two together to headline a convention would be like today – it would be massive.
Following on from the announcement of CoNZealand being awarded the 2020 Worldcon, here are a few links you may have missed.
This is the reveal video shown at the announcement.
That video showed a small snippet of congratulations from the Prime Minister – here is the full version.
The CoNZealand twitter feed reveals that the New Zealand bid party won Best Food as voted on by #Worldcon76 party attendees.
The 2018 convention added their congratulations.
Stuff, New Zealand’s largest news site had their own slant on the announcement. As a complete aside, it is now just a few weeks more than 20 years since George R R Martin was a guest of honour at a NZ natcon in Wellington.
The NZ Herald also reported the news.
Straight from the Worldcons news feed…
Wellington, New Zealand, has been selected as the site for the 2020 Worldcon. The New Zealand bid received 643 votes of the 726 votes cast. There were no other official candidates.
The convention will be called CoNZealand. The dates will be July 29 to August 2. George R.R. Martin has been announced as the Master of Ceremonies. Further information is available from the convention website. More news on Facebook – check out the new logo. Twitter also worth checking out.