Robert J. Sawyer

Hugo and Nebula Award-Winning Science Fiction Writer

Toronto’s Ad Astra loses three of its Guests of Honour

by Rob - February 24th, 2006.
Filed under: Uncategorized.

It’ll still be a wonderful con, with authors Terry Brooks and Peter David, editor Betsty Mitchell from Del Rey, and fan David Warren (who, among other things, is also my real-estate lawyer), but the other announced guests have all bowed out. Here’s the scoop from Ad Astra’s website:

As I’m sure some have now noticed, Ray Harryhausen, Ray Bradbury and Rowena have been removed from our website as Guests of Honour for our upcoming convention.

Although this is very disheartening, we could not avoid the situation.

Ray Harryhausen was contacted last year via his British agent. They agreed on attending our convention, even going so far as to waive the normal appearance fee. We were overjoyed. We were also informed that they would be releasing a new book this year in North America, so we were trying to tie in a book launch. Sadly, Ray’s North American agent was not happy with the arrangements, and booked Ray for a conflicting convention. As they were willing to pay a large stipend, and we could not, Ray has been booked with them.

Ray Bradbury has informed us that he has a project in the works that has had it’s deadline changed, and it now also conflicts with Ad Astra. Again, earning a living has won out over a free appearance.

Rowena was forced to cancel when she ran into some difficulties with Canada Customs and importing her work. She has also opted to not attend in order to save herself some money.

So, although it is sad to lose three large guests so suddenly, we certainly understand why they opt to do what is financially best for them, especially in today’s economy.

We wish them the best going forward.

We are currently looking to replace them with other Guests of Honour. At this point, we will not be making any announcements vis-a-vis who we are contacting. Once we have firmed up an appearance, we will make an announcement and update our website.

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