SwanCon 14 – PR2 – ‘So what the hell is an urban spaceman’

being a query and three response on the topic of the Urban Spaceman, covering most of page 6 of the second official progress report for Swancon 14. A small amount of space at the bottom of the page has been filled in with line drawings. On the left, there are three near identical ‘spaceman’ suits. The one on the left is the plainest, and is labelled ‘Spaceman (Generic)’; the one in the middle is standing at a bus-stop and is labelled ‘Spaceman (Urban)’; the one on the right is smoking a cigarette and saying ‘Sterling idea, what?’ and is labelled ‘Spaceman (Urbane)’. On the right, there is a different style of spaceman suit, with the individual leaning on a pole of some kind, and connected up to some big boxy thing. 

As ever, typos faithlessly reproduced

So What the Hell is an Urban Spaceman?

Guy Blackman recently wrote to us with the following complaint:

“. . . my complain concerns your theme of Swancon 14 – The Urban Spaceman. This is a very vague title and I am not sure of all that it entails. An explanation would bring great gratification. ”
Guy is, I am sure, not alone in his uncertainty. ‘The Urban Spaceman’, it’s a great theme, but what the hell does it mean? we asked some of our committee members.

John Richards

My ideas on the Urban Spaceman are unfortunately (and probably predictably), a little cynical. This is ‘cos I’ve heard that song by Neil Innes. After singing the praises of this wonder of today (“I’m a supersonic guy”) he concludes with “I’m the Urban Spaceman, here comes the twist, I don’t exist.”
I think the Urban Spaceman is the hero; taller, stronger, braver, smarter, faster and more blonde than any other. A wit, yet deep, cheery, yet with an inner understanding – upright and laidback at the same time (and not recommended by the Surgeon General). And there are hundreds who believe that they are this sex-god et. al., but they’re not. They don’t exist. There are no Urban Spacemen. Not one. It’s a myth. Zilch. (I think I’m going to cry  – ed).
But if they do exist, I’d love to meet you. Come to the ‘con, we’ll do lunch . . .

Terry Chilvers

The Urban Spaceman is one of those cleverish-sounding phrases that don’t actually mean anything in particular (except that in this case it is also the title of a song). I rather like it as a theme – I just dunno what it means. Two ideas: (1) Urban, modern settings for stories (as opposed to starships and the far future). Other Days, Other Eyes and “Press Enter ◼︎ ” rather than Orbitsville and The Ophiuchi Hotline.
(2) Armchair adventurers – frustrated wishful thinkers.
That may not be much help in suggesting masquerade costumes however . . . .

Gina Goddard

To me, the notion of the Urban Spaceman is one which is of particular interest to today’s society. The world’s population is becoming increasingly centred in urban areas and because of this new methods and styles of living are becoming necessary. As man affects his environment more and more we are also (finally) becoming aware of our impact on our world. This is the future that many SF writers have seen and already considered. We are the Urban Spacepeople.
As for masquerade costumes why not ignore the theme completely if you wish? Or, come as a piece of high density housing.

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Swancon 14 – Progress report 2 – Convention news and information (part 3 of 3)

being a sequence of small news articles, covering page 4 of the second official progress report for Swancon 14. As ever, typos faithlessly reproduced

Badge Making Service

We would like to extend our badge-making services to provide made-to-order badges to our members. If you have a slogan or design you’d like to be able to wear as a badge, just send it to us, and we’ll incorporate it into a badge for $1.50 (plus postage). Better yet, send us an appropriately sized blank (see below), save us the trouble of designing the badge and we will convert your design to a badge for only $1.00 (plus postage).

DIY Badge Designs

Almost any design can be converted to a badge, so long as it can be contained within the following dimensions: The blank must be a circle 70mm in diameter cut from paper or cartridge. Any design must fit within a central 59mm circle (do not mark this circle on the blank as it will show in the final product).

Standard Badges

We also have a series of standard designs as shown below. These are available in red, yellow, green blue or white and cost $1.00 each (plus postage).

The remaining half page consists of an array of circles, 4 circles high, and 6 wide. Each circle represents a single badge. There are two with images — a female like figure riding a zebra like animal with text “Virgin — on the ridiculous”, and two silhouetted cats on a black blob with text “Perfect harmony” — and the rest are text only. These include (but are not limited to:

  • Kylie Who?
  • REVENGE has no use by date
  • I am a honorary GUMBY
  • This is a Bicentennial road project
  • I feel a bit NORMAL today
  • Question authority – you can ask me anything
  • I’m a teapot
  • I’ve been seduced by the CHOCOLATE side of the FORCE

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Swancon 14 – Progress report 2 – Convention news and information (part 2 of 3)

being a sequence of small news articles, covering page 3 of the second official progress report for Swancon 14. As ever, typos faithlessly reproduced

Swancon Port.

We will once again be offering bottles of Swancon Commemorative Port. Bottled by Gallifrey Wines of Western Australia and featuring a distinctive “Tin Duck” label, these were very popular at Swancon 11 (the last WA NatCon).
You can reserve your bottle(s) by writing to the convention address, the price is yet to be determined.

And Then There Were Two…

Most recent highlight of Perth fannish activity were the nuptial celebrations of convention chairthingy, Cindy Evans, and Matthew Clarkson on Saturday, November 5th. Those of us lucky enough to attend the celebrations can tell you that we honestly haven’t seen the two of them look happier. They couldn’t stop smiling (or drinking champagne). The best wishes of all of Perth fandom (and much of Australian fandom) go with Cindy and Matthew. This is the first in a spate of approaching committee marriages. What some people will do to get a week off working on the con…

Wanted: More Art. More Programme Items

Thank you to those who have written suggesting programme items. We are always open to suggestions – so don’t stop writing! Thank you also to Lewis Morley, Robert Phillips and Guy Blackman for providing the artwork for this issue. All we need now is artwork for the remaining PRs and the Programme Book !

[here on the page, there is a small black portrait orientated rectangle with a white drawing, reminiscent of chalk on blackboard drawings. At the top, a stereotypical flying saucer, at the bottom right a humanoid figure with antennae, looking up at the saucer, and at the bottom left the words “oh no an alien!!” ]

Conspire ’89

The 1989 SF and Fantasy Media convention will be held in Canberra at the Metro Inn Canberra Rex Hotel between March 17 and 19 1989. Attending membership is $50 until January 1989 and $60 until March 1989, supporting membership is $10. The theme is Mystery, the official charity Foundation 41.
Fan guest of honour is Robert Jan, Pro GoH is yet to be announced.
Convention address: GPO Box 2080 Canberra ACT 2601 Australia.

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Swancon 14 – Progress report 2 – Convention news and information (part 1 of 3)

being a sequence of small news articles, covering page 2 of the second official progress report for Swancon 14. As ever, typos faithlessly reproduced

Millenium : The Movie

We reported in our last PR that John Varley had been working on a film in Toronto, Canada. Principal shooting on the film in question, Millenium (from Varley’s novel of the same name) is now complete. The script was written by Varley, and was directed by Michael Anderson. Cast includes Kris Kristofferson, Cheryl Ladd and Daniel J. Travanti (“I’ve heard that name before” department: Capt. Furillo from Hill Street Blues).
John has promised to bring a home movie The Making of Millenium to Swancon.

New Books for Bob Shaw.

Bb Shaw’s sequel to The Ragged Astronauts, The Wooden Spaceships has been released in hardcover. Publishers are Gollancz (UK) and Baen (US). Bob’s current project is a sequel to Orbitsville and Orbitsville Departure, entitled Orbitsville Judgement. Work on this novel should be completed early next year.

Swancon at the Royal Show.

Swancon and Tactics (a local gaming store) recently held a stall at the Perth Royal Agricultural Society Show, publicising both the store and the convention. Tactics bore the costs involved and put together a fine display of SF, fantasy and historical miniatures. Swancon committee members (and draftees) manned the stall, selling games and badges and distributing publicity leaflets.
From a publicity point of view, the stall was a great success in bringing both Swancon 14 and Tactics to the attention of the general public. As an added bonus, we were also able to raise a small amount of money through the sale of badges (see page 4).
We would like to extend our thanks to tactics for their continued support and for allowing us this avenue of publicity.

Introducing: The Hotel Ghost !

Parts of The Kings Ambassador are, reportedly, haunted by the ghost of a former Assistant Manager who was murdered at the hotel some years ago . This news is being taken quite seriously by the committee, and we are currently working the ghost into our programme.

Mumfan: In Memorium

One of Swancon’s most faithful and well-liked participants will not be with us in 1989. Marge Hughes, better known to all of us as “Mumfan”, passed away of cancer on the 25th of September. Marge has been a part of Swancon longer than most of us – somehow it will never be the same.

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Swancon 14 – Progress report 1 – page 10

Transcribed by Doug Burbidge.

Pages 9 and 10 are guest bios, each about two thirds of a page. The third of the three is:

Paul J. Stevens

Paul Stevens has been involved in the SF community since 1962. In that time, he has contributed a great deal to this community. Swancon 14 has chosen to recognise this contribution, and to show our appreciation for his acheivements by inviting him to attend our convention as the Fan Guest Of Honour. Originally from Melbourne, Paul now lives here in Perth. An SF reader from an early age, his first involvement in fandom came when he joined the Melbourne Science Fiction club. Through this club he became involved in the organisation of a number of SF convention, serving in various positions including chairman.

Paul may perhaps be better known as the film character Antifan which he helped create in the early seventies. The first Antifan film was made as part of the successful 1975 bid by Melbourne fans to hold the World Science Fiction Convention in their city. The Super 8 film, in the style of old silent movies, featured the evil Antifan performing various villaneous acts in an attempt to foil the bid’s success. Other Antifan films were made to support subsequent WorldCon bids, for Sydney in 1983 and the successful bid for Melbourne in 1985.

For fifteen years, Paul worked for Melbourne science fiction bookshop Space Age Books . He is also the creator of The Golden Caterpillar Award, a personal award presented at Australian National Science Fiction Conventions. These are usually presented for humorous reasons, but have also been awarded in recognition of special effort.

Since moving to Perth, Paul has been involved in various aspects of the book trade and has continued his liaison with the SF community. We feel that Paul deserves recognition for his acheivements and thus we are proud to have him as our Fan Guest of Honour for 1989.

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Swancon 14 – Progress report 1 – Page 4

Transcribed by Doug Burbidge

How to Have a Terrible Time at a Swancon

Gina Goddard

Well, I’m sure it’s been done. I do remember hearing about one person who had an absolutely dreadful time. But that was because of his hangover. I’m sure that it’s possible to have a really bad con, I just can’t think of how.
Oh, I know. Be on the committee. That way you get someone to throw a cream pie in your face. Great fun, heh?
What’s that?
It all depends on your point of view?
I suppose the best way to not enjoy yourself is to avoid participating in anything. Don’t come to the masquerade, better still don’t enter it. That way you’re sure to ruin a few hours.
Whatever you do don’t participate in the fan olympics. I mean can you think of anything much worse than horizontal mountain climbing?
You can?
Welllll, what about the dance? All that exertion and unseemly behaviour? Yuck.
You think you’d quite enjoy that?
Okay then, what about the gaming, the band, the auction, the vegemite shield, fannish theatre sports,the video stream, the academic programme, the cocktail party, the Ditmars, the banquet, the filksinging, the fact that the other members of the convention keep on talking to you and being friendly? I could go on and on.
From what you can gather it sounds like fun?
If you’re not careful you’ll end up enjoying yourself.

And that IS what Swancon is all about. Five days to have a good time.
You really can’t have a terrible time at a Swancon.


Fan Funds

Fan Funds blah blah blah DUFF GUFF FFANZ a third of a page.

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Swancon 14 – Progress report 1 – page 2

Transcribed by Doug Burbidge, preserving idiosyncratic spacing around punctuation where possible.

The Chairthingy’s Welcome

Cindy Evans


This fast-talking, slick-looking PR will answer all The Questions that have been burning in the back of your mind about Swancon Fourteen. ( If by some fluke you think of a question that hasn’t been answered, please write to Terry Chilvers. He is the seer of this convention.)

I, Cindy Evans, am the Tyrant. The one with the cute smile. The one who during or after SWANCON 14 you may wish to abuse. Some of you may know me from SWANCON 11. For those who don’t, I will briefly mumble my convention background. I have been involved in running conventions since 1985 (SWANCON 10 ). In the intervening spae of time, I have held positions of Secretary at SWANCON 11 ( the 25th NatCon), programmer and publicity. I have also been the secretary of the PERTH IN 94 WorldCon bid since 1985.

Titles aside, SWANCON 14 will be the best SWANCON any of you have attended. For those of you who have never ventured to the West Coast, it’s about time you did ! ! As bait to lure you over to Perth we have two international talents in the persons of John Varley and Bob Shaw. Two funloving authors who love to PARTY ! ! Our Fan Guest of Honour is Melbourne expatriate, Paul J. Stevens, now resident in Perth. This PR contains more information on all of our guests.

Our theme for the convention is ‘The Urban Spaceman’ . The interpretation of this theme is up to you; the committee all have their own ideas (and these will be printed in the next PR), but we don’t intend these definitions to be prescriptive. The convention will reflect our theme.

This PR has been released to coincide with the 1988 NatCon, Conviction. If you are lucky enough to be attending Conviction, enjoy it to the full. To those of you who are unable to attend, fear not ! 1989 and SWANCON 14 will be your year and your convention ! This PR is the first of four ‘major’ convention PR’s, and will be widel distributed. Subsequent PR’s will only be made available to members, with smaller flyers being used to keep non-members up to date.

To our members: see you at Easter ’89.
To those who have not yet purchased a membership: IT’S ABOUT TIME YOU DID !

See you next year !

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Swancon 14 – Progress report 3 – summary

Description and transcriptions by Anna Hepworth. As ever, typos faithfully replicated, and layouts and formats approximated only as much as can be done with trivial amounts of html.

As with the second progress report for SwanCon 14, the third progress report is a 12 A4 page saddle stapled booklet. In addition, there are a number of inserts:

  • single sided yellow A4 page advertising the upcoming Quiz Night (Shenton Park Hotel, 8th February, starting 7.30pm, Tables of six, rose $4 per ticket, Tickets can be obtained c/o SWANCON 14 P O Box 318 Nedlands WA 6009)
  • double sided yellow A4 page being the 1989 Australian Science Fiction (DITMAR) awards nomination form (transcription to follow later)
  • double sided cream A4 page with the membership list (now at 170 names) on one side, and a repeat of ‘The Hotel’ and How to get to Swancon’ on the other. The bottom corner of the membership list has a somewhat squashed Department of the Arts (Government of Western Australia) logo with the associated text “This project is funded by the State Government through the Department of the Arts.”
  • two double sided cream A4 pages stapled together at the top, containing a short spiel by Grant Stone regarding nominations for the Ditmars, and then two lists of eligible works. (maybe one day we will put these up on the wiki. But maybe we won’t. We’re a bit like that. Ed.)

The booklet itself features front cover artwork by Jeremy Reston, of a space-suit wearing figure riding a rocking horse, with a silhouetted Perth skyline visible between the rockers and the belly of the horse. The space-suited figure has some kind of back pack belching murky smoke into the upper edges of the page. At the top, the text ‘SWANCON 14’, and at the lower right ‘PR 3’.

Internally, page 2 (inside front cover – it appears that the number scheme has changed since the last PR) has ‘Swancon 14; closer to the end, closer to the beginning’; pages 3-4 have ‘The Most Wanted List’ and ‘The Guests’; pages 5-6 have ‘Important Trivia’ and ‘The Urban Spaceman’ — all of these are likely to be transcribed at some point.

Pages 7 through 11 have details of the programme – this may or may not end up transcribed, depending on how bored (or motivated) we might get. The bottom two-thirds of page 11 has a rectangle with the words ‘And then the dead dog party’ in a large (but pixelated) Ye Olde English font, just to make sure that only people who have had enough sleep will be able to read it. And the back cover has ‘Generic booking form’, which allows people to book hotel rooms, book seats for the banquet, reserve a huckster’s table ($80 professional, $40 fan), submit a programme item, and/or becoming a member of Swancon.

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Swancon 14 – Progress report 2 – summary

Descriptions and transcriptions by Anna Hepworth. As ever, typos faithfully replicated, and layouts and formats approximated only as much as can be done with trivial amounts of html.

The second official progress report for SwanCon 14 was a 12 A4 page booklet, saddle stapled. The front cover has a Lewis Morley pencil drawing of a somewhat bleak city scape with a floating space ship beaming down bipeds in either spacesuits or full body armour, carrying items suggestive of going to the beach for the day (bucket and trowel, fishing rod, umbrella) while a rodent featured mecha looks on. ‘Swancon 14’ is written across the top; ‘PR2’ at the bottom right.

Information on the inside front cover (p1) looks identical to that from PR1, and will not be replicated. Pages 2 through 4 have a sequence of small news articles which it is anticipated will be transcribed at some point. Page 5 talks of the Australian Science Fiction Awards (and may or may not ever be transcribed). Page 6 has a short discussion of the theme of the ‘con of Urban Spaceman; pages 7 and 8 detail ‘Fandom in Perth’ — both of these should be transcribed later. Pages 9 and 10 exactly replicate the information from PR1 on the Hotel, How to get to Swancon, and the Hotel Booking form.

The membership list on the back cover has gone up to 140 names. Many of the later names are ‘s’ memberships (still assumed to be ‘supporting’). As with PR1, there is a small piece of artwork to brighten up the page – in this case, a ‘spaceman’ with black faceplate, holding an umbrella – looking like they are drifting down the page.

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Swancon 14 – Progress report 1 – inside front cover

Transcription by Anna Hepworth. The editors of ASFDAP would like to point out that the initial 3 progress reports and the ‘regular one- to two-page flyers’ mentioned below are items that we do not have in our archive, and if anyone has copies that they would be willing to scan (or lend to us to scan) we would be very grateful.

Swancon 14: About the Convention

Swancon 14 is the 28th annual Australian National Science Fiction Convention, which will be held at The King’s Ambassador Hotel, Perth over the Easter weekend of 1989. Registration opens at noon on Thursday 23 March, and the convention ends with the ‘Dead Dog’ Party on the night of Monday 27 March 1989.

Convention membership currently stands at $A 50.00 (attending) and $A 20.00 (supporting). The attending rate rises to $ A 60.00 as of August 1 1988.

This progress report contains information about our guests ( John Varley, Guest of Honour. Bob Shaw, Toastmaster and Paul J. Stevens, Fan Guest of Honour.), the hotel and many aspects of the convention itself. For more information, read on …

T.R.O.™ Progress Report 1 ….?

This is The Real Official Swancon 14 Progress Report, Number One, a fact which those of you who received PR’s 1, 2 and 3 previously may find somewhat confusing! Here’s the story…

Up to now, Swancon 14 has concentrated its promotion upon targeting other Australian conventions, producing small PRs to do so. With the advent of Conviction, our strategy changes. There will be four ‘major’ Progress Reports between now and Easter 1989, all of a similar size and format to this one. While the first will be generally distributed, the remaining three will be sent to members only. Swancon 14 will continue to publicise its existence to non-members using regular one- or two-page flyers.

Advertising is available for both the major PRs and the promotional flyers, the rates and publication schedule (for the PR’s) are listed below:

Major PR Flyers

Fan Pro Fan Pro
1/4 Page $5 $10 $5 $10
1/2 Page $10 $20
Full Page $15 $25

The Committee
Cindy Evans (Chairthingy). hing-Wing Chung (Financial Controller). Terry Chilvers (Secretary). Ian Nichols (Programming). Greg Turkich and Vanessa Leber (Hotel Liaison). Grant Stone (Awards). Gina Goddard and Elizabeth Bowyer (Publications). Daryl Colgan (Fund Raising). John Richards (Publicity).

Artistic Credits
Cover Art: Lewis Morley
Masquerade Cartoon: Annette Wilson
‘Antifan’: Cindy Evans from an original design by Paul Stevens.

Publication Deadline

PR2 October 1988 16 September 1988
PR3 New Year 1989 2 December 1988
PR4 March 1989 27 January 1989
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