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Guests of Honor
2017 Grandmaster Guest of Honor
James Gunn has had a career balanced between writing and teaching, typified by service as president of the Science Fiction and Fantasy Writers of America and as president of the Science Fiction Research Association, as well as having been presented the Grand Master Award of SFWA and the Pilgrim Award of SFRA and been inducted into the Science Fiction and Fantasy Hall of Fame. He served as a guest-of-honor at the 2013 World Science Fiction Convention. He has taught fiction writing since 1960, served as director of University Relations, and created the Center for the Study of Science Fiction at the University of Kansas, where he is now Emeritus Professor of English.
He has published more than 100 short stories and has written or edited 44 books, including The Immortals, The Listeners, The Dreamers, Alternate Worlds: The Illustrated History of Science Ficton, The Road to Science Fiction, and, most recently at the age of 92, Transcendental and its sequels, Transgalactic and Transformation.
Photo taken by, and rights reserved by Jason Dailey Photo p:785.218.9904 daileyimages.com
2017 Author Guest of Honor
Marko Kloos is the author of the best-selling Frontlines series of military Science Fiction. He’s also a member of George R.R. Martin’s Wild Cards consortium, and an author of short fiction. His short stories have appeared in Beneath Ceaseless Skies and Alex Shvartsman’s Unidentified Funny Objects anthology of humorous SF and Fantasy.
Marko was born and raised in Germany, but emigrated to the United States twenty years ago. He lives in rural New Hampshire with his wife, two children, and vicious pack of attack wiener dogs. His blog can be found at markokloos.com, and he is on Twitter (entirely too much) as @markokloos.
Check out what George R. R. Martin thinks about Marko Kloos.
2017 Artist Guest of Honor
Arden Ellen Nixon’s art reflects her love of literature, history, and mythology, to say nothing of her sense of humor and ongoing obsession with Alice in Wonderland. Be the subject sacred animals or Isis, Cheshire cats or winged watchers of our world: if she hasn't painted it yet, it’s only for lack of time. Her current projects include calendars, illustrations for her own short stories and novels, a series of historical portraits, and her signature "Make-Shift Angel" series.
Arden resides with her husband and their pride of felines, all of them surrounded by books, paintings, and non-existent wall space.
Justin Lewis sprang from the depths of Omaha, Nebraska and got as far as Lincoln before deciding this would be the place where they could do the most harm. Formative inspiration came from 80’s indie comics, Doctor Who, new wave sci-fi, cosmic horror and a whole lot of 90’s ambivalence, which is probably why they completed a degree in graphic design from UNL. They have always had a passion for expression and creativity which continues to this day in the form of prints, web comics, book covers and the rare painting.
UNL is also where they joined the Lincoln Fantasy & Science Fiction Club and were introduced to the wild world of conventions. Over the years they have attended many cons in the region and have won numerous awards for their artwork in exotic locales as Iowa, Minnesota and Nebraska and now work at their alma mater as a graphic designer. Justin’s longest running projects include the webcomics Eye Eighty and Misericordia, and Outpost Zeta, their blog dedicated to B- and Z-grade film. Occasionally they and other miscreants put on a panel known as Only the Finest Cinema at various local conventions and meat packing plants.
Horror and the uncanny dominate Justin’s aesthetic, with shadow and vivid color acting as antipodes between which dark things play. These compositions form worlds where rules of nature and narrative are twisted into strange gardens of the irrational, the monstrosities which inhabit them both alien and sympathetic. To descend into them is to dare to understand things which lie beyond our common experience.
-- Written by Joshua Sterns