Con*Stellation XXX: Corona Borealis

September 16-18, 2011 in Huntsville, Alabama


Our guest lineup for 2011 is growing! The Guest of Honor will be multi-award-winning author Gene Wolfe. Our Artist Guest of Honor will be the fantastic Lubov. Our Fan Guest of Honor will be the lovely Gay Haldeman. (Gay has also graciously offered to bring along hubby/writer Joe Haldeman, winner of more awards than you can shake a stick at.) Our Mistress of Ceremonies will be Huntsville's own Stephanie Osborn.

We're also expecting authors Chris Berman, David Drake, Allan Gilbreath, Les Johnson, and Kimberly Richardson plus editor/publisher extraordinaire Toni Weisskopf, magician Darrell Osborn, and librarian/archivist/webmaster Karen Zimmerman. The list of guests will continue to grow, so please check back again to see who's been added to the lineup. Use the links at right to find out more about some of our guests. We'll keep adding these bios, too, as soon as we can.

Gene Wolfe

Author Guest of Honor

Picture of Gene Wolfe

Gene Wolfe's sold his first fiction in the mid 1960s, though he didn't become a full-time writer until retiring as editor of the journal Plant Engineering in 1984. (For those of you with a biological bent, the journal title refers to Mr. Wolfe's background as a Mechanical Engineer, not as a geneticist. :-)

Gene Rodman Wolfe was born in New York, raised in Texas, and now resides in suburban northern Illinois. He's a Korean War veteran and a graduate of the University of Houston (whence his engineering background).

His work has received almost every major award in the sf/fantasy field including the Nebula Award (twice), the World Fantasy Award (thrice), a Campbell Memorial Award, no less than 6 Locus Awards, the World Fantasy Award (thrice), both a British Fantasy Award and a British SF Award, and numerous others. He was honored with the World Fantasy Life Achievement Award in 1996 and inducted into the Science Fiction Hall of Fame in 2006.

Mr. Wolfe's output is still strong as he approaches his golden anniversary in the field. His latest book is The Sorcerer's House (Tor, March 2010) and his next, Home Fires, is due out 18 January 2011. While he doesn't maintain an official website, his legion of fans more than make up for that and you can read more about Gene Wolfe at The Lupine Nuncio or Ultan's Library… or Google will helpfully supply you with 407,000 results.


Artist Guest of Honor

Picture of Lubov

Lubov was born in St. Petersburg, Russia and emigrated from there to the United States for the cultural and political freedom. She studied art at the Chicago Art Institute, but she maintains that her true knowledge of art—her sense and sensibility—comes via her own studies. She claims Adolphe-William Bouguerau, John W. Waterhouse, Maxfield Parrish, Sir Lawrence Alma-Tadema, Victor Mikailovich Vasnetsov, Arkhip Kuinji, Alphonse Mucha, and Rembrandt as her artistic inspirations; and indeed her work has much of the same sense of mastery that those names evoke.

You can read more about Lubov on her website.

Gay Haldeman

Fan Guest of Honor

Picture of Gay Haldeman

This is what Gay says about herself:
Gay Haldeman (Mary Gay Potter Haldeman) has a Master's degree in Spanish Literature from the University of Maryland and another in Linguistics, from the University of Iowa. She teaches in the Writing Center at Massachusetts Institute of Technology (MIT) every fall, specializing in English as a second language.

The rest of the year she resides in Florida, where she manages writer Joe Haldeman's career, dealing with editors, answering correspondence (in Spanish and French as well as English; isn't e-mail wonderful?), serving as travel agent, answering

the phone, typing and filing, arranging publicity, selling Joe's out-of-print books, etc. She's been going to SF conventions since 1963 (so has Joe) and loves to meet new people.

After 46 years of marriage, she still thinks Joe's the best thing that ever happened to her.

Here's what your webmaster has to say about her:
Mumbledy-mumble years after meeting Gay, I still think she's one of the best things ever to happen to fandom. If you've ever met her, you probably agree. If you've never met her, it's about time you remedied that lack.

Much of the text for this was cribbed from the Denvention 3 Program Participant Biographies. The last bit (from your webmaster) was straight from the heart.

Stephanie Osborn

Mistress of Ceremonies

Picture of Stephanie Osborn

Stephanie Osborn is a former payload flight controller, a veteran of over twenty years of working in the civilian space program, as well as various military space defense programs. Stephanie is currently retired from space work. She now happily "passes it forward," tutoring math and science to students in the Huntsville area, from elementary through college.

Stephanie is still fairly new at this "author stuff," but already has a fist full of novels and short stories in print, and more on the way.

Her next book out, Extraction Point co-authored with Travis S. "Doc" Taylor, is due to hit the shelves of your local bookstore 15 April 2011.

You can read more about Stephanie Osborn on her website.

Joe Haldeman

Special Guest

Picture of Joe Haldeman

Joe Haldeman is an Okie by birth, but his upbringing included stints in Puerto Rico, New Orleans, Washington, D.C., and Alaska. He currently divides his time between Gainesville FL and Cambridge MA (where he's an Adjunct Professor at the MIT, teaching writing every fall semester).

His works have won him five Hugos and five Nebula Awards and an amazing number of other awards. He's also been named a Grand Master by the Science Fiction and Fantasy

Writers of America (of which he was president 1992-1994).

You can find out more about Joe Haldeman on his website. Be prepared to find out about a renaissance man; he lists hobbies including travel, omnivorous and indiscriminate reading, cooking (daily) casino gambling, amateur astronomy, drawing and painting, guitar, a lot of bicycling, and a little fishing, canoeing, swimming, and snorkeling.

Toni Weisskopf

Picture of Toni Weisskopf, um, borrowed, yeah, that's the term, borrowed from the FenCon IV website

For us at Con*Stellation, Toni Weisskopf may be the epitome of a hometown gal woman person hero made good. OK, so Huntsville isn't actually her home town, but she moved here with her family at age 12 and credits our fair city as the place she discovered fandom.

After graduating from Oberlin College she joined Baen Books (in 1987) where she rose through the ranks from

editorial assistant to editor to executive editor. She took the reins as publisher after the death of founder Jim Baen in 2006.

Toni has kept Baen Books one of the leading publishers of sf and fantasy since then and shows no signs of slowing down. When you talk to her at Con*Stellation you can ask her about Baen's e-publishing program and their philosophy on Digital Rights Management, or about the stellar list of authors she's worked with, or about, well, just about anything to do with sf/f publishing. You can also ask her about fandom — she may be the consumate pro but she's also still a fan. You can read more about Toni Weisskopf here.

Chris Berman

Picture of Chris Berman

Author and lecturer Chris Berman calls himself an accidental author — he wrote his first novel, The Hive, while recovering from a bicycle versus SUV accident. His second novel, Red Moon, came out in late 2009 from Xpress Yourself Publishing. His latest novel, Star Pirates, was released in May 2011 by Leo Publishing. He lives in Saint Augustine, Florida with his wife and two daughters. You can find out more about Chris Berman on his website

Allan Gilbreath

Allan Gilbreath is an award-winning author, story-teller, and instructor. He has been published in numerous anthologies, magazines, and e-zines. Allan has appeared on stage, television, radio, and web cast. His series of adult vampire novels began with Galen and continued with Dark Chances, both out from Kerlak Publishing. Much of his short fiction (ranging from dark fantasy to science fiction to

steampunk) was collected in 2010 in Allan Gilbreath: A Short Story Collection.

You can read more about Allan Gilbreath on his Facebook page.

Kimberly Richardson

Author and editor Kimberly Richardson's first book is an anthology of her short stories and poetry, Tales from a Goth Librarian. After that, she turned her hand to editing a 2010 steampunk anthology Dreams of Steam for Kerlak Publishing. She lives in Memphis, Tennessee and books (on divers subjects) are her greatest passion.

You can read more about her on her website/blog.

Les Johnson

Bio coming soon.

Darrell Osborn

Bio coming soon.

Karen Zimmerman

Bio coming soon.

David Drake

David Drake has allowed as how he's best known for his military science fiction, but he's certainly done a lot more than that within the sf/f genre. Humor. Thriller. Epic fantasy. Swords and sorcery. Space opera. Historical (both fantasy and sf). In fact, the only subgenre he claims to have not tackled yet is romance. (Hmm... I wonder what a David Drake romance would read like...)

David took his undergraduate (BA, History & Latin) at the

University of Iowa. He must have been bitten by the writing bug early, as he sold his first story (to Arkham House) while still at UI. His stint at Duke Law School was interrupted by the draft board, but was completed after he got out of the army. Following law school, he spent eight years as a practicing attorney before transitioning (via a part-time bus driving job) to life as a full-time writer beginning in 1981. And aren't you glad he did.

You can read more about David Drake on his website.

Robot waving hand/claw; by Randy Cleary