Author Guest of Honor: Carrie Vaughn
The phrase "Air Force Brat" sums up most of my childhood. When I was born in January 1973, my father was co-piolting a B-52 all over southeast Asia and my mother was having her umpteenth nervous breakdown at Mather Air Force Base near Sacramento, California. That explains so much, doesn't it? Both of my parents must be credited with my current career path: my mother gave me Heinlein's Red Planet when I was eight. Shortly thereafter my father sat me down to watch 2001. My brain just hasn't been the same.
I was a high school valedictorian (tied with five others-it was that kind of high school) and received a BA from Occidental College in Los Angeles (I went there the same time as Ben Affleck, but I never met him, much to my anguish.) I lived in York, UK, for my junior year abroad (ask the Freaksoc crowd about the time I was the Goddess of the River Ouse). I've worked as a Renaissance Festival counter wench, a theater usher, an editor, a buyer at an independent bookstore, and as the ever-popular 'administrative assistant.' I went back to school. (University of Colorado at Boulder this time.) Once, I was the student. Now, I am the Master. ("Only a Master of English, Carrie.") Doh!
In 1998, I attended the Odyssey Fantasy Writing Workshop, a six-week long summer workshop directed by Jeanne Cavelos.
I live in Boulder, Colorado, and I still have to do my own laundry.
When I was about six and my little brother Robbie was four, I threw a coffee can at him in the sandbox. Smacked him right on the head. I didn't mean to. He had to have stitches. Now that his hairline is receding, the scar is becoming visible. I knew I was never going to live that one down.
Artist Guest of Honor: AB Word
Operating out of a studio on the open range of North Central Wyoming, AB co-administrates Merglenn Studios with her husband, Barrie Lynn Bryant, a picture frame maker, carver, and glider. AB works mostly with soft pastels and pastel pencils creating finely detailed images she pulls from her fanciful imagination. She depicts real people and animals and has been working with one model in particular, the red-haired girl, for 18 years. With art and Maltese dogs on board in their van, AB and Barrie tour more than 20,000 miles each year primarily to juried outdoor arts and crafts festivals throughout the USA.
AB's debut into the fantasy market came at Providence, Rhode Island during 1999 World Fantasy Convention wherein she received an Art Show Award from director Ted Atwood and recognition from Paper Tiger Commissioning Editor, Paul Barnett, who promised to publish her artwork in a future book. AB has since attended and exhibited in a dozen other World Fantasy, World Horror, and World Cons as well as braved four years with Comic Con international in San Diego, twice featuring in the famous Artist Alley. Aside from the big ones, she's either attended or mailed art to other local and regional cons and honorably served as Artist Guest of Honor for WillyCon at Wayne, NE during April, 2005 and OPUS at Denver, CO during April 2003.
AB's artworks feature in the Mar./Apr. 2003 Pastel Journal Magazine, May 1997 Southwest Art Magazine, and the books The Paper Tiger Fantasy Art Gallery (2002) and Spectrum 8: The Best in Contemporary Fantastic Art (2001).
Toastmaster Guest of Honor: Daniel C Nielsen
Daniel C Nielsen, 45, lives in Norfolk with his wife and son. He has been a lifelong fan of science fiction and fantasy. He cites Robert E. Howard, Glen Cook and Steven Erikson as his favorite authors and as the primary influences he writes dark fantasy/sword and sorcery.
He is a regular at most area conventions and has been an Author Guest of Honor at WillyCon and Contagion. He is the crazy Viking bartender for the Ragnarok Luau room parties and last year brought out another alter ego- 80's hairband musician, Bjorn Malmsteen, who looks surprisingly like Howard Sten and is the much slower guitar playing brother of guitar virtuoso Yngwie Malmsteen. Other interests include cryptozoology, hunting, fishing (he occasionally writes for fishing magazines), playing guitar and cooking (He has a cookbook out!). You can find his work on Amazon, Lulu and in select national angling magazines.