Head of International Fantastic Division

After six years of much-appreciated service as IF Division Head, Dale Knickerbocker is stepping aside to allow someone else the opportunity. The IAFA board, on behalf of the entire IAFA community, thanks Dale for the hard work that he has done establishing the IF Division as a vibrant part of the ICFA.

The IAFA is now accepting applications for the position of Head of the International Fantastic Division, effective immediately.
The Division Head is the person who sends out paper calls for his/her Division, collects and accepts paper proposals, creates paper sessions, helps to create panels, and passes the work s/he’s done on to the 1st Vice President for scheduling. This Division is responsible for all aspects of the fantastic arts originally produced in a language other than English, in any medium.

Qualifications include current membership with IAFA (at least a couple of years’ experience with the organization so you have some understanding of how things work at the conference), easy and dependable internet access and comfort level with computers, organizational skills, the ability to work as part of a group working together on the ‘big picture’, a willingness to work through the transition with the previous Head beginning this fall, the ability to attend March conferences while you hold the position and to attend the Division Heads’ meeting run by the 1st VP at the conference, plus, of course, the time to do the work involved. Knowledge of the field of fantastic literature in a language other than English is required. Division Heads hold office for a term of 3 years (with a probationary first year) with the possibility of renewal for a second 3-year term.

If you’re interested in taking on the work of IF Division Head, please contact both Sherryl Vint, 1st Vice President (sherryl.vint@gmail.com), and Dale Knickerbocker, outgoing IF Division Head (knickerbockerd@ecu.edu), with a brief statement about your interest in and qualifications for the job. The IAFA board of directors will consider all applications for the position.

The deadline for applications is May 1, 2010; a decision will be made by June 2010.

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IAFA Chief Technology Officer (a.k.a. Tech Gnome)

Call for Candidates: IAFA Chief Technology Officer (a.k.a. Tech Gnome)
Board Position: Chief Technology Officer
Effective: post-conference 2010, transition to start immediately
Term: 3 year appointment, renewable at the President’s discretion

Following the recent IAFA elections and the transition of Jim Casey to the role of President, there is now a need for a new Chief Technology Officer (Tech Gnome), who will be appointed by the President, after formal discussion and majority vote of the other elected officers.

The Chief Technology Officer works with the Conference Chair to manage conference AV needs on-site and will provide primary support and maintenance for the IAFA’s online resources, such as the registered domain name (IAFA.ORG), the websites (IAFA, JFA, etc.), and the organization’s email discussion lists (IAFA-L, DIV-HEADS, IAFA-BOARD, JFA-STAFF, etc.). The Chief Technology Officer is responsible for technology acquisitions and advises the President and Executive Board on policy matters relating to information technology.

The time required for the position is hard to quantify as the duties vary depending on the time of year. Obviously there’s a fair bit of work before, during, and after the conference and the candidate must be available before the annual conference for technology set-up and immediately after the conference for technology take-down.

In addition, the Chief Technology Officer is a voting member of the Board and must be available to attend IAFA meetings. During the conference, the IAFA Board meets on Wednesday evening, and holds a business meeting, usually on Thursday just before dinner. The other commitment is the annual meeting, which takes place over a weekend, usually in late-may/early June, in Florida; the expenses for this meeting are covered by the IAFA Board.

Interested candidates should forward their application package (a cover letter and CV) by May 1st, 2010 to incoming President Jim Casey at jcasey@highpoint.edu for review at the annual Board meeting.

Graham J. Murphy

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Registration and Membership Coordinator

Call for Candidates:

Registration and Membership Coordinator
Board Position: Registration and Membership Coordinator
Effective: post-conference 2010, transition to start immediately
Term: 3 year appointment, renewable at the President’s discretion

The conclusion of ICFA-31 will also mark the completion of Stacie Hanes’s tenure as Registration/Membership Coordinator, a position appointed by the President, after formal discussion and majority vote of the other elected officers.

This officer oversees the operation of the IAFA membership and the ICFA registrations, corresponding with members regarding their membership dues and payments, taking in membership and registration fees, collecting and verifying accurate membership and registration statistics and accounts of tickets, and distributing registration packets and badges as well as tickets for luncheon and banquet programs at the conference. Fee structures and forms for membership, established by the Executive Board, are administered by the Registration/Membership Coordinator. This officer also oversees the maintenance of membership mailing lists, and preparation of copy for the annual Directory. The Registration Coordinator is appointed by the President after formal discussion and majority vote of the Board.

In addition, the Registration and Membership Coordinator is a voting member of the Board and must be available to attend IAFA meetings. During the conference, the IAFA Board meets on Wednesday evening, and holds a business meeting, usually on Thursday just before dinner. The other commitment is the annual meeting, which takes place over a weekend, usually in late-may/early June, in Florida; the expenses for this meeting are covered by the IAFA Board.

Interested candidates should forward their application package (a cover letter and CV) by May 1st, 2010 to incoming President Jim Casey at jcasey@highpoint.edu for review at the annual Board meeting.

Graham J. Murphy

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ESTA Application

If you are coming to ICFA from Europe, don’t forget the ESTA form. The link can be found here.

On to Orlando.

Take care,
Graham J. Murphy

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Election Results

Thank you to those candidates who participated in the most recent IAFA elections. As reported on the listserv by Mike Levy, Immediate Past President, the votes cast were the following:

For President

Jim Casey 34
P. Andrew Miller 1
Susan George 1
Elvis 1

For First Vice President

Sherryl Vint 19
Judy Collins McCormick 18

For Public Information Coordinator

Crystal Black 25
Aidan-Paul Canavan 9
Valorie Ebert 3

Congratulations to those members who will be the new faces to the IAFA Board when ICFA-31 concludes.

Graham J. Murphy

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Crawford Award

Jedediah Berry has been named the winner of this year’s William L. Crawford Award for his first novel The Manual of Detection.

The award, presented annually at the International Conference on the Fantastic in the Arts, is designated for a new fantasy writer whose first book appeared the previous year. This year’s conference will be March 17-21 in Orlando, FL.

The nominators for this year’s award also shortlisted Deborah Biancotti’s story collection A Book of Endings, Kari Sperring’s novel Living with Ghosts, and Ali Shaw’s novel The Girl With Glass Feet, and wanted to commend two other authors whose works were ineligible this year but were highly regarded: Robert V.S. Redick, whose The Red Wolf Conspiracy appeared in 2008 and whose The Ruling Sea appears in 2010, and Michal Ajvaz, whose The Other City originally appeared in Czech in 1993 but was first translated into English, by Gerald Turner, in 2009.

Those participating, in varying degrees, in this year’s nomination and selection process included Kelly Link, Niall Harrison, Cheryl Morgan, Graham Sleight, Paul Witcover, John Clute, Jonathan Strahan, Liza Trombi, Farah Mendlesohn, and Amelia Beamer.

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Getting Groceries by Bus or Driving

Some of you might want to pick up some groceries or other necessities close to the hotel. We’ve got three Publix stores located in shopping centres (near a WalMart, Walgreens, or liquor store) in easy driving distance from the hotel; two are easily reached by bus routes traveling up S. Semoran Blvd, the major route just to the west of the hotel complex.

To get onto S. Semoran Blvd:

Drive (or walk, if you’re taking the bus) around the water feature in front of the hotel, then north on Augusta National Dr to the first major intersection with T. G. Lee Blvd. Then turn left onto T.G. Lee Blvd and drive for a very short distance to the major intersection of T.G. Lee and S. Semoran Blvd. Turn right onto S. Semoran and drive north.

Option 1: 6485 South Chickasaw Trail, Orlando

Drive through the intersection with Hazeltine National Drive, through the intersection with Butler National Drive, past a number of strip malls on the right hand side.

At the intersection of S. Semoran and Lee Vista Blvd, turn right onto Lee Vista Blvd.

Drive east along Lee Vista Blvd for a while, through major intersections with S. Goldenrod Road and Narcoossee Road.

At the intersection of Lee Vista Blvd and S. Chickasaw Trail, turn left onto S. Chickasaw Trail.

The Publix should be on the right hand side of the road, near a Wachovia bank. Turn right to enter the parking lot, and you should be able to see the store.
Option 2: 4501 Hoffner Avenue, Belle Isle, FL

Drive north, past the intersection with Lee Vista Blvd to the major intersection of S. Semoran and Hoffner Avenue.

Turn left onto Hoffner Avenue and drive west, past Kempston, Kailua, Mauna Loa, and Kingfish Streets.

You should see the shopping area on your right before you get to the major intersection with S. conway.

The Publix should be on the right side of Hoffner Ave. It looks like there’s an entrance to the parking lot off Hoffner, but you could also turn right at the intersection with S. Conway and enter the parking lot from there also.

There seems to be a liquor store nearby, and a Walgreen’s, so this could be a good place for a shopping trip if you need to pick up more than just groceries.
Taking the bus to Option 2:

The #51 bus travels on S. Semoran and then down Hoffner, turning again at S. Conway; in other words, exactly the same way you’d drive to get to the Publix, which is at the corner of Hoffner and S. Conway. There’s a stop just north of the intersection of S. Semoran and T.G. Lee Blvd; use the airport timing point on the way there, and timing point 4 (corner of Hoffner and S. Conway) to return. Here’s a link to the schedule; it runs every 30 minutes Monday-Saturday and every hour on Sunday.

Option 3: 4048 South Semoran Boulevard, Orlando

Drive past the intersection with Hoffner, then past Gatlin, then past Pershing.

On the left side of the road, there’s Fern Park Shopping Center, with a Publix and a Walmart.

It looks like you’ll have to drive past the shopping center to the major intersection with Lake Margaret Drive, make a left-hand turn onto Lake Margaret Drive, then another left into the parking lot entrance; S. Semoran is a divided highway.
Taking the bus to Option #3:

The #41 bus goes straight up S. Semoran past the Fern Park Shopping Center. You can catch the #41 at a stop just a short walk north of the S. Semoran/T.G. Lee Blvd intersection. Here’s a link to the schedule for the #41. Use the airport timing point on the way there, and timing point 9 (Curry Ford) on the way back.

For both buses, get off at the stop at the T.G.I. Friday’s on T.G.Lee Blvd; you’ll just cross S. Semoran at the intersection and be on your way back to the hotel.

Given that it is an airport hotel near a major roadway and industrial/business park, there aren’t a lot of options for those who need something close enough to walk, as these three grocery stores are the closest to the hotel. There’s a convenience store on T.G. Lee Blvd, on the way to the usual restaurants (before the intersection with S. Semoran), next to a Chinese restaurant that’s fairly new. As I recall from last year, it’s a decent-sized store with good stock, but I don’t think it has fresh produce or anything like that. There’s a Walgreen’s a 15-20 minute walk up S. Semoran, but I can’t recall anything closer than that.

Here’s a link to a Wikimapia:

If you hover your cursor over the outlined places on the map, you’ll see our hotel labelled near the midpoint at the bottom. The Publix on Lee Vista Blvd is labelled towards the right about halfway up; the Publix on Hoffner is labelled towards the left about halfway up (near Lake Conway); the Publix on S. Semoran is labelled at the very top of the page, around the middle.

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Getting to Cirque du Soleil by Bus

ICFA has some good evening programming to check out, but maybe you’re looking for something a bit different to do for one evening, something away from the hotel. Maybe you’re coming in a bit early or staying a bit late. Maybe you don’t usually stay for Saturday night’s banquet.

If so, you might want to check out Cirque du Soleil’s show La Nouba at Downtown Disney World. I saw it last year and am going to see it again this year, and I thought some of you might want to know how I’m going to get there on public transit.

I’ll let those of you with a car check out Google Maps for driving directions. If you’re not driving, you could certainly take a cab or get a group together for a shuttle, but if you want to save some cash, it really isn’t that difficult to get around Orlando by bus, especially if you are used to using public transit at home.

There are a couple of different routes you could take. Last year I tried transferring from the #42 Airport/International Drive (see last year’s post for using this bus to get to Florida Mall and the Outlet Malls) to the #50 Downtown Orlando/Magic Kingdom. It worked out well except that I didn’t like the looks of the transfer point near Sea World on the way home: by the side of a highway in the dark. Instead, I transferred to the #111 Airport/Downtown Disney and I think that bus will work much better.

Both the #42 and the #111 begin at the Airport, only minutes from the hotel. You can hop on the hotel shuttle to the Airport and walk down the bus/shuttle area to the public transit stop, or you could pick up the #42 in front of T.G.I.Friday’s on S. Semoran and be there in a few minutes.

The #111 leaves the Airport on the hour and half-hour all day, and takes about an hour to get to Downtown Disney. Or you could pick up the #42 across the street from T.G.I.Friday’s and transfer to the #111 at Florida Mall (the connection times look pretty good).

The #111 does not go into Downtown Disney itself, as the #50 does (at least, it didn’t last year; the schedule now suggests that it does). It runs down Buena vista Blvd, past Downtown Disney (clearly visible on your right, and the bus will announce it also), on its way to the Ticketing and Transportation Center for Walt Disney World. You can get off anywhere along Buena Vista Blvd in front of Downtown Disney, and walk through the area to the Cirque du Soleil on the west side.

To get back to the hotel, you’ll need to cross Buena Vista Blvd; there’s a crosswalk at the parking lot entrance, right near Planet Hollywood, and you just walk up the sidewalk until you come to a stop with #111 listed on it. The area is busy and brightly lit, so I didn’t feel at all worried last year waiting for a bus late in the evening. Take the #111 right to the airport and either call the hotel shuttle, or transfer to the #42 at Florida Mall (getting off in front of T.G.I.Friday’s and crossing S. Semoran) or at the Airport (getting off at the stop right after the intersection of S. Semoran with Lee Vista Blvd). Then it’s a short walk back to the hotel.

Last year I went to the 6pm show and was back at the hotel in lots of time to drop in on the Tuesday night party in the President’s suite.

Helpful links:

Orlando’s transit page, with maps and schedules.

Here’s a link to La Nouba. The show runs twice per evening, Tuesday through Saturday. You can buy tickets now to be held at the ‘will call’ or you can wait until you get there and hope there will still be some seats on sale at the box office (which did seem to be the case last year).

Here’s a link to Downtown Disney which is a shopping area (mostly Disney merchandise) on the outskirts of Walt Disney World. There are restaurants such as Planet Hollywood and House of Blues, and Fulton’s Crab Shack, and the theater for Cirque du Soleil, all bordering a nice little lake where ferries shuttle Disney World guests. So you can have a nice meal, walk around the lake, and then take in the show.

A Wikimapia view of Downtown Disney. I centered it on Planet Hollywood, and you can see the Cirque du Soleil tent on the left side of the page. Buena Vista Blvd is the road marked in yellow, curving along the bottom of the screen. You can see a crosswalk out of the parking lot at the center bottom and another one near what’s marked as Hess Station; the bus will stop every couple of blocks along Buena Vista. The schedule map shows it stopping at Downtown Disney West Side Transfer Center (timing point 3) but it didn’t do that last year, so I’m heading for a stop on Buena Vista just in case. But I’ve marked the location for the transfer center on the Wikimapia; it’s a very short walk from the Cirque du Soleil tent.

Of course, if you just want to do some shopping, check out last February’s entry on taking the bus to Florida Mall and the Outlet Malls. It’s in the archive under February 2009.

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Holiday Reminder: ICFA-31

Hello IAFA-ers,
I offer this holiday reminder in the hopes of saving you some money:

ICFA Registration (Registration includes one ticket* for the Friday Guest Scholar Luncheon.)

Early before January 01, 2010: $ 105

Regular January 01 – February 01: $ 125

Late & On-site after February 02: $ 160

Student Early before February 01: $ 55

Student Late after February 02: $ 65

If you want to save your hard-earned cash then make sure you register for ICFA-31 before Jan. 01, 2010. In addition, don’t forget the hotel room rate for conference goers is $125 (excluding taxes) and the booking deadline is Friday, February 12th, 2010. Be forewarned, however, that the rooms often sell out well in advance of this deadline, so book early to ensure you secure a spot in the hotel.

On to Orlando.

Graham J. Murphy

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IAFA Elections

Slate of Candidates for Election to IAFA Office

For President:

Jim Casey

As AV Monkey, I reorganized ICFA’s entire AV system by standardizing procedures, updating equipment, and developing a plan for the future. If elected, I would continue the improvements begun through my Monkey Business and Tech Gnomery, upgrading our technological infrastructure, regularizing administrative procedures, improving communication, and implementing training programs so people can participate more easily. Rather than relying on the institutional memory of a few enlightened bureaucrati, IAFA needs to involve all our wonderful members, increasing both membership and involvement without alienating long-time members. If elected, I promise to take the conference and organization seriously without taking myself too seriously.

For First Vice President:

Judith Collins McCormick

I have skirted the edges of the ICFA for about thirty years now, enjoying both its personal and its professional benefits. It’s time I paid something back.

According to several reliable sources, the office of 1st Vice President is best filled by a person with at least one of the particular neuroses I already possess, namely O.C.D. Thus, I humbly submit my name for said office, hoping the membership will see fit to allow me to fixate on scheduling, coordinating, and the correct spelling of every name.

Sherryl Vint

The IAFA and its annual conference has been an important part of my academic life since I attended my first conference in 2000. The opportunity to receive feedback on my presentations from some of the leading scholars in the field has enhanced my thinking and made me a better scholar. I have also made some of my dearest friends through the conference and its promotion of a collegial and collaborative atmosphere regarding research in the fantastic. I am interested in serving as 1st VP in order to ensure that these opportunities remain available for future generations of scholars. I have served for a number of years as the Division Head for the SF Literature and Theory section, and have enjoyed the opportunities I have had to get to know more of the association’s members and to organise events such as panel discussions and theory roundtable readings to foster intellectual exchange. Were I to be elected, my priorities would be to ensure that the conference remains a lively site of exchange that continues to promote the best scholarship in the fantastic, to foster collaborative projects and collegial exchange, and to nurture the next generation of scholars through support for graduate students.

For Public Information Coordinator:

Crystal Black

I’ve been an active member of IAFA for eight years, the last two as your Head of Registration. While I’m no longer an academic, my professional experience as a marketing and communications manager in the high tech industry should help IAFA forge into new communication technologies possibly including podcasting and social media like Facebook and LinkedIn. Other organizations I’ve supported in various communication activities include Virginia Tech San Francisco Alumni Association, Bus Barn Stage Company, SCSI Trade Association, and Fibre Channel Industry Association. I’m eager to continue my support of IAFA and believe this is the best way I can give back.

Aidan-Paul Canavan

The ICFA has supported me during my Ph.D. by providing a forum to discuss my research, to meet like-minded academics and to have their scathing criticism hone my arguments.

The organisation has been the unacknowledged partner in my research and I want to serve on the board to redress part of the balance of what I owe. I need to stop being a bystander and to start taking responsibility for the conference I love.

I can promise hard work, dedication, and the best of my considerable organisational abilities. I will also consider dressing as a leprechaun for some formal dinners

Valorie Ebert

I am new to both IAFA and ICFA, but my first experience with them, at ICFA 30, made a strong impression on me. Because ICFA 30 was my first conference as a graduate student, I was understandably nervous. However, within the first few hours, I was warmly received by several veteran attendees. Not only did they encourage me and offer advice; they also showed up at my reading to give me the added benefit of familiar faces to calm my nerves.

This experience inspired me to become more involved with IAFA and ICFA, to get more familiar with the process, and to encourage others to attend and present papers. Because the duties of the Public Information Coordinator require the use of my strange obsession with organization and my need to meet deadlines, I feel that this position will be a valuable experience that I will undertake with enthusiasm.

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