Robert J. Sawyer

Hugo and Nebula Award-Winning Science Fiction Writer

NorthStar: The first-ever conference on Canadian science fiction

by Rob - September 18th, 2022.
Filed under: Academics, Canadian SF, Conventions. Tagged as: , .

NorthStar 1982 flyer

Forty years ago this month, when I was 22, my great friend Ted Bleaney and I put on NorthStar, the first-ever conference on Canadian science fiction. I’ll be in South Dakota on September 25, which is the actual 40th anniversary of this event, so I’m posting about it today.

Our Guest of Honour was Donald Kingsbury of Montreal, who had recently been nominated for a Hugo for his debut novel Courtship Rite.

Other speakers were:

  • John Robert Colombo the editor of the first-ever Canadian SF anthology, Other Canadas
  • Terence M. Green and Andrew Weiner, who, at the time, were the only Canadians publishing regularly in the major US SF magazines.
  • Robert Knowlton (then known as Robert S. Hadji), then and now Canada’s leading expert of horror and dark fantasy literature.

Above is the flyer for the event, made by me on the electric typewriter I’d scrimped and saved to buy, with Letraset rub-down lettering for the Moore Computer typeface. Click the image for the full-size version.

While Donald Kingsbury was staying at Carolyn and my place for the event, I interviewed him at length. Richard E. Geis published the 6,500-word interview in his magazine Science Fiction Review, Spring 1984.

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