At Loncon 3, we will have an extensive schedule of programming, with talks, lectures, debates, workshops, readings, and panel discussions. There will be around six hundred items making up the core programme over the five days of the Worldcon, with up to a dozen items running in parallel at any one moment in time.
The programme will include a wide range of topics over a variety of different areas. Our main focus will be science fiction and fantasy literature. In addition, subjects such as science, comics, young adult fiction, fan activities, art, and costuming will all be catered for, and we have a team of area heads taking responsibility for these areas. Many areas will have sufficient items to keep a person interested in the subject busy most of the weekend, and some of our area heads give their ideas for Loncon 3 elsewhere on this site.
As well as our Guests of Honour, our programme participants will include authors, scientists, creators, editors, publishers, artists, and fans. Many of them will be drawn from the membership of the convention, but we also plan to invite external speakers for specialist items.
One of our aims for Loncon 3 is to have as diverse and interesting a programme as possible, and to achieve this we need to have a wide variety of programme volunteers, recommendations and suggestions. We want to encourage people to sign up, especially if you feel you have a different angle, perspective or experience to offer. London is a diverse city, and we want to reflect that diversity in our programme. Of course, we are also a Worldcon, so we want to look beyond London, and we invite participants and programme ideas from all over the world.
Worldcons are very lucky that so many professionals attend who are willing to give up their time and volunteer for panels, but it is a misconception is that only experienced people or experts need apply, and the “best” participant in an item is not necessarily the professional or expert in a subject. Please do not disqualify yourself from participation before you’ve volunteered!
We plan to open our programme participation survey in the autumn of 2013. This will allow potential participants to select the general areas, themes, and subjects that they are interested in, as well as making specific suggestions, and this database of information will allow us to match participants with the most suitable panels. We can’t guarantee to place everyone on programme, but we’ll do our best to find you a match. (It is unlikely that we will be able to reimburse panel participants.)
We also want recommendations from you – if you have seen someone or know someone you believe would be great on programme, please let us know with their details, and we will see if they’d like to get involved.
While we are aiming to have gender parity across our programme items, we accept that with six hundred items on a range of topics and the complexities of scheduling them across five days we are unlikely to achieve this on every single item. We feel that the best way to reach gender parity across our programming as a whole is to focus from the start on encouraging a wide range of diverse participants to volunteer and to suggest programme items and areas which interest them, and that this wider pool of participants will lead to a more gender-balanced programme.
Feel free to email us or an area head if you have a query about any part of the Loncon 3 programme. We welcome questions and suggestions, and we will aim to respond within 4 days.
James Bacon, Ian Stockdale, and Liz Batty