I volunteer with Glasgow 2024 worldcon, a circumstance that came about as a result of me attending my first worldcon, Dublin in 2019. I’ve posted elsewhere on this site about what an incredible experience that was, bolstered by some very personal encounters; friendships strengthened and deepened, wishes crystallised, dreams coming into focus. Attending your first convention, especially your first worldcon, can be a formative experience, even at the age of 53.
I won’t dwell on how I came to volunteer with Glasgow 2024 a year later; it was something of a penance. Suffice to say, being part of Glasgow 2024 Promotions, and the G24P Presents… team within that, has transformed my view of fandom. By attending a con, you can see what it means to people to be among their own: but seeing what goes on behind the scenes, what goes into the preparation, is a whole other level.
I am writing an article about the benefits of cons for writers; and there are very real and tangible benefits, but it’s not really about that, it’s about joining in, contributing to the community. To give a flavour of the experience I have had in the last 12 months, here is a short list of what the Glasgow 2024 Presents… team has achieved, with still a year or more to go until the 82nd Worldcon comes to Glasgow:
- Planning, preparation and presentation of a range of online panels on highly varied genre topics with a diverse selection of guests, authors and experts;
- Setting up, promoting and publishing fortnightly readings by Indie Science Fiction, Fantasy and Horror authors in the Glasgow 2024 Indie Author Reading Library;
- Conducting and publishing fortnightly Meet the Author interviews;
- Planning, recording, editing and releasing a festive song: Last Winter
That a small team can put together so much material is a testament to the love of fandom, and for their fellow fans, that motivates this dedication to an event existing purely to bring genre fans together, and to celebrate the stories they love. And there is, of course, much more to come. Check out the following links:
Web > https://glasgow2024.org/
Facebook > Glasgowin2024
Twitter > Glasgowin2024
Instagram > glasgowin2024
And this is the production of one team. Imagine what Glasgow Worldcon 2024 can be when you consider that there are many separate teams preparing different aspects of this mighty convention. It is a quite humbling thing to witness the effort and time that go into this endeavour; all of it unpaid. All to realise the joy of celebrating venerated works, renowned authors, discovering new writers and performers, opening up to new stories; to see friends reunited, new friendships made, dreams shared and a love fulfilled. Strong words perhaps, but that is the power of fandom.