April 26-28, 2024 – Richmond, VA

Author: ravenchair (Page 1 of 14)

Dr. Hope Dugan

Hope is a leadership development consultant and success coach with over 15 years helping artists and leaders regain control over limiting beliefs such as perfectionism, imposter syndrome, and automatic thinking. Her passion is empowering people to recognize their worth and gain the skills they need to reframe their past experiences while designing their future. Hope enjoys working with artists and other creatives to help them achieve results, get unstuck, and move boldly forward.

Hope holds a doctorate in leadership, is a certified coach, and holds CSML certification from Harvard University. She is an adjunct professor at Wingate University and a William C. Friday Human Relations Fellow. Her first book, Unapologetically Bold: Living the Life You Have Imagined is now available on Amazon.

Americans Abroad

Local folk punk band, Americans Abroad was formed by Sam Norton in 2020, originally as a solo project. Now a band, they play fast acoustic songs tackling issues such as worker’s rights and the human condition.

Charity Auction 2024

Over the years, Virginia has been fortunate to have several great local conventions. ShevaCon was one that I tried to attend whenever possible, but in reality I ended up only attending sporadically throughout the Nineties. I started attending on a regular basis in 2002, when I began publishing Nth Degree. By my second appearance there as a guest, I was getting to know the staff pretty well. In 2005, when I was starting to organize the first RavenCon, word got to me that a few members of the ShevaCon staff were retiring and might be interested in helping out. I, of course, took them up on their offer. This was when Doris and Mike Manning became part of my family.

Ever since the first RavenCon, Doris ran our Registration Desk. She was always the first person you would see when you arrived at the convention; greeting people, handing out badges, and answering everyone’s questions. Doris embodied a quiet efficiency that kept us running smoothly. She loved her con family, cats, unicorns, books, and the Muppets; not necessarily in that order.

In January of 2014, Doris had a routine run-in with con crud. Her doctor screwed up and put her on an antibiotic that after a mere four doses pretty much shut down her kidney function. The nephrologist she was refered to proceeded to put her on a treatment plan with no better than a 50% chance of success. Several years of illnesses and treatments followed; around and around. Through it all, her loving husband and her convention friends kept her spirits up and she stayed her ever-positive self through it all—leg ulcers, treatments, more con crud, treatments, the COVID years, more treatments…

The last time she walked was July 12, 2021. She walked into the hospital under her own power, had one more surgical debridement there, and then got shipped to a nursing facility in Charlottesville where she ended up at the UVA Medical Center and woke up a week later… to the sound of a dialysis machine… mittens on her hands… and a promise that if she held still just a few minutes more the ventilator would be taken out. From that moment until the day that she passed, Doris fought. She had so many things that she still wanted to do, including getting back to see her convention family. The day before she passed I watched her make plans for long-term treatments and listened as she laid out plans for beating her illness and getting out of bed again.

Needless to say, there are bills and insurance is neither quick nor efficient nor kind. We’ve designated Doris as our 2024 Charity Auction recipient to help with the bills she left behind and to help make things easier on her husband, Mike Manning. Doris never missed the Charity Auction; she loved the crazy unpredictable stunts that would happen during the Auction and she always helped keep it running efficiently so it’s only fitting that we give her a good send off this year.

–Fearless Leader

 

Asylum 213

Established in the summer of 2010, Asylum 213 is the brainchild of singer/guitarist Dylan Lawson. After nearly a decade of writing and recording countless collections of boundless sonic explorations, one person soon became four to generate an audible onslaught as of 2019. Once described as an “alt-rock wonderland” (The Auricular, 2018), Asylum 213 have taken the east coast and surrounding regions by storm, garnering notoriety for their chaotic, high-energy, jaw-dropping, and unpredictable live performances presented at every stage or living room they are booked. Asylum 213 (sometimes endearingly shortened to “213”) blends elements of sludge rock, shoegaze, alternative, math rock, pop, trip-hop, metal, and noise in a titanic wave of aural euphoria; passionately packaged and delivered to all ears willing to listen. The songs draw from many influences with some influence from science fiction and other pop culture favorites.

For fans of: Kero Kero Bonito, Don Caballero, The Butthole Surfers, Anamanaguchi, Psyopus, Death Grips, The Smashing Pumpkins, Buckethead, The Dillinger Escape Plan, Mr. Bungle, Tub Ring, etc.

Ellen Datlow

Ellen Datlow has been editing sf/f/h short fiction for four decades. She currently acquires short stories and novellas for Tor.com and Nightfire. She has edited numerous anthologies for adults, young adults, and children, including The Best Horror of the Year annual series, When Things Get Dark: Stories inspired by Shirley Jackson, Screams From the Dark: 19 Tales of Monsters and the Monstrous, and Christmas and Other Horrors. She’s won multiple Locus, Hugo, Stoker, International Horror Guild, Shirley Jackson, and World Fantasy Awards plus the 2012 Il Posto Nero Black Spot Award for Excellence as Best Foreign Editor. Datlow was named the recipient of the 2007 Karl Edward Wagner Award, given at the British Fantasy Convention for “outstanding contribution to the genre” and was honored with the Life Achievement Award given by the Horror Writers Association, in acknowledgment of superior achievement over an entire career and honored with the World Fantasy Life Achievement Award at the 2014 World Fantasy Convention. The Shirley Jackson Awards, Inc. recently presented her with a special award in recognition of the anthology When Things Get Dark: Stories inspired by Shirley Jackson (Titan Books, 2021).

She runs the Fantastic Fiction at KGB reading series in the east village, NYC, with Matthew Kressel. She can be found on the website Datlow.com, and on Twitter and Facebook (google her).

Ursula Vernon, aka T. Kingfisher

Ursula Vernon, aka T. Kingfisher, is the author and illustrator of far more projects than is probably healthy. She has written over fifteen books for children, at least a dozen novels for adults, an epic webcomic called Digger, and various short stories and other odds and ends.

Count Gore De Vol

Count Gore De Vol began his career of hosting horror movies in 1973 on WDCA-TV in Washington, DC. In 1998, he took his program to the Internet, becoming the first horror host to do so. In 2018, he created his own Roku Channel, Count Gore De Vol Presents providing ten new video offerings every month.

Count Gore is played by actor Dick Dyszel, who also produces the program. He has appeared in several feature films including, The Alien Factor, Nightbeast, and Galaxy Invader, and was the subject of a feature length documentary on his career called Every Other Day is Halloween now available on an extended Blu-Ray.

Day Al-Mohamed

Day Al-Mohamed is an author, filmmaker, and disability policy advisor. Day has written two novels, Baba Ali and the Clockwork Djinn and more recently, The Labyrinth’s Archivist as well as multiple short stories and articles. She is a regular host on Idobi Radio’s Geek Girl Riot with a weekly audience of 100k+ listeners and a Founding Member of FWD-Doc (Documentary Filmmakers with Disabilities).

Her documentary, The Invalid Corps, about disabled Civil War soldiers, was licensed to Alaska Airlines and had its broadcast premiere on public television in 2020. She is currently working on a docu-series, Renegades, about role-breaking disabled leaders in history for American Masters/PBS digital, and is a proud producer of the feature documentary Unseen (POV, 2024). Day was named a DOC NYC 2021 Documentary New Leader and was part of the NBC 2022 Original Voices Fellowship class.

Outside of her creative work, Day is a policy expert with over 15 years of experience. The former White House Director of Disability Policy, she is a proven leader in inclusion and accessibility, policy development, organizational transformation, and innovative program design.

Day lives in Washington, DC with her wife, N.R. Brown, and her guide dog, Gamma.

Jim Beall

Jim Beall (BS-Math, MBA, PE) has been a nuclear engineer for 50 years, beginning as a nuclear engineering officer in the US Navy. Civilian experience includes design, construction, inspection, enforcement, and assessment with a nuclear utility, an architect engineering firm, and the US Nuclear Regulatory Commission (USNRC). Assignments included on-site health physics support, piping design stress analyses, reactor licensing, reactor startup testing (Canadian Point Lepreau heavy water reactor), research reactor inspections, and an assist mission to the State Nuclear Regulatory Inspectorate of Ukraine in Kiev. USNRC positions included reactor site construction senior resident inspector (SRI), reactor operations SRI, inspection team leader, safety analyst, senior enforcement specialist, and reactor policy assistant to three different Presidential-appointed USNRC Commissioners while earning the agency’s Meritorious and Distinguished Service awards.

Duties of those policy-level posts included research into alternative and speculative energy sources, as well as energy forecasts and transmission technologies. Energy sources included coal, oil, hydro, geothermal, tidal, solar, wind, fracking, space-based, heavy water reactors, breeder reactors, fusion, and even anti-matter.

Coauthor of Journal of the British Interplanetary Society (JBIS) paper, “Ecological Engineering Considerations for ISU’s Worldship Project” and also Elsevier’s “Interstellar Travel: Purpose and Motivations.” Baen Books (baen.com) has published several of his non-fiction articles on a variety of subjects, including:

  • “Our Worldship Broke!”
  • “Case Studies in Handwavium”
  • “From Corvus to Keyhole—Shipyards: Past, Present, and Science Fiction”
  • “Radium Girls of Science and Science Fiction”
  • “Grid Wars: Innovation, Feuds, Rivalry, and Revenge in the Never-ending Battle to Electrify America and the Planet”
  • “Atomic Follies”
  • “Warships of Sea and Space – Part 1”
  • “Warships of Sea and Space – Part 2”
  • “Recycling: From Stars to Starships”
  • “Borders: From the First Sumerians to the Last Starfighter”
  • “Artificial Intelligence: Myth, Fiction, and Future”

R.S. Belcher

R.S. (Rod) Belcher is a newspaper and magazine editor and journalist. He is the 2022 Webster Award Winner and was the Grand Prize winner of the Star Trek: Strange New Worlds Anthology contest.

Rod has been a private investigator, DJ, a comic book store owner, and worked with the Occult Crime Taskforce for the Virginia General Assembly.

His novels include the Golgotha series (The Six-Gun Tarot, The Shotgun Arcana, The Queen of Swords, and The Ghost Dance Judgement), The Nightwise series (Nightwise, The Night Dahlia) The Brotherhood of the Wheel series (The Brotherhood of the Wheel, King of the Road). His novel adaptation of the film, MiB International was published by Titan Books in 2019. The first book in his Audible Originals space opera series, The Queen’s Road, released in December of 2019, and as a book in 2020.

He is currently at work on a stand-alone novel, Ink and Ash, and the fifth Golgotha novel, The Hanged Man.

Rod has spoken and taught at numerous conferences and universities. He hosts programs monthly on his Patreon Discord channel, as well as on a YouTube channel called The Knave of Pens with R.S. Belcher.

He lives in Virginia with his children, Jon, Emily and Stephanie, and his grandchildren, Torri, Sofiyah, Julian, and Jaxson.

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