May 29, 2014

ConQuesT 45 Memories

Our annual convention has shifted to the rear-view with the passing of Memorial Day Weekend, but the pleasant memories linger.  We hope you went, and that you had a great time!

The ConQuesT is Dead!  Long Live the ConQuesT!
Early-bird memberships to ConQuesT 46 are already available online, for the lowest price of the year, but only until MAY 31, 2014, 11:59 p.m. CDT!  We have a blockbuster lineup of guests (scroll down or go to the website).  We will return to the Kansas City Downtown Marriott.

Memories Captured
The amazing Keith Stokes has already posted a full gallery of images from ConQuesT 45 on his Midamerican Fan Photo Archive, the go-to source for photos of ANYTHING to do with science fiction/fantasy fandom, especially in the midwestern USA (the full collection spans the globe).

With particular thanks to Keith, we're sharing a few of his images with you here, but do yourself a favor and check out the full gallery on Keith's site!
Toastmistress Caroline Spector introduced the guests with a hilarious PowerPoint. L-R: Spector, Ray and Barb VanTilburg (Fan Guests), David Lee Pancake (Artist Guest), Bridget Landry (Science Guest), Glen Cook (Author Guest), Kristina Hiner (Vice-Chair), and Jesi Pershing, ConQuesT 45 Convention Chair.
This was only part of the Dealers' Room, coordinated by Cindy Norton.
Here's a view of most of this year's Art Show, directed by Mike Neely.
This year's Con Suite on the 6th floor included a bar and individually packaged edibles, to (we hope) cut down on the transmission of "con crud." Con Suite was run by Beth Welsh; the bar was coordinated by Ty Gephardt (far R).
Art Auction: Auctioneers were Tom Meserole (almost in photo at L) and F. L. "Zac" Zacarola (on stage); the runner shown is Signy Gephardt, displaying a ceramic piece by Peri Charlifu.
"Bland Lemon" (Brad Denton)  and "Honey Badger" (Caroline Spector) added musical life to the popular Room Con party, hosted by Mystie Hollaman. This year's event was Room Con 10.
Ken Keller (KaCSFFS President), Ty Gephardt, and Brad Denton look on as Earline "Cricket" Beebee and Robin Wayne Bailey accept one of the coveted "Golden Butterworth" party recognitions at Closing Ceremonies, for the "Raygun Chronicles" party.
Taking the helm: Keri O'Brien (ConQuesT 46 Vice-Chair) and Kristina Hiner, incoming ConQuesT Chairperson, accept their duties at Closing Ceremonies.
We also should note that the proceeds of this year's Charity Auction went to support AboutSF, an educational nonprofit based in Lawrence KS, whose motto is "Saving the World Through Science Fiction."

Shameless Plug for ConQuesT 46!
You won't believe our lineup of guests for ConQuesT 46!  Theme is "The Adventure Begins Here," and the weekend is conceived as a quest, inspired by our truly inspiring lineup of guests:
Author Guest: Brandon Sanderson!  Editor Guest: George R.R. Martin! Fan Guest: Mark Oshiro! Artist Guest: NeNe Thomas! Toastmistress: Selina Rosen Don't miss it--and also don't miss the Early Bird membership pricing!  Available online, but only until MAY 31, 2014, 11:59 p.m. CDT! You can still get a membership after that, but it'll cost a bit more.

IMAGE CREDITS: The ConQuesT 45 Noir logo is by Keri O'Brien, and came from the official ConQuesT websiteConQuesT 45 photos are by Keith Stokes, courtesy of the Midamerican Fan Photo Archive.  MANY THANKS, KEITH!!

May 19, 2014

KaCSFFS will move to Google from Yahoo

Stand by for the move to Google Groups!
A quorum of current members showed up at the May KaCSFFS meeting to consider, discuss, and vote on the question of whether to migrate our main organizational information from the KAXFEN group on Yahoo Groups a new list on Google Groups.

Ultimately, the vote was overwhelmingly in favor. The changeover will happen after we've had a chance to get an orientation about how the listserv works.

Here is a video on the various functions of Google Groups:

Come to the June meeting, June 21, 2014, for a complete orientation presentation!

IMAGE CREDITS: The Google Groups logo is from the "Art for Obama" website. The YouTube video is courtesy of Art House Groups.

May 18, 2014

SF&F Literati Meet THIS MONDAY

The May SF&F Literati meeting is a week early: May 19, 2014
Book of the Evening: Sweet Silver Blues 
Author: Glen Cook, our ConQuesT Author Guest of Honor!
Where: Oak Park Barnes & Noble Booksellers #2352,  11323 W 95th Street, Overland Park, KS 66214
2nd Floor, by the front windows.
When: 7:00 p.m., May 19, 2014

Overview from Barnes & Noble:
It should have been a simple job. But for Garrett, a human detective in a world of gnomes, tracking down the woman to whom his dead pal Danny left a fortune in silver is no slight task. Even with the aid of Morley, the toughest half-elf around, Garrett isn't sure he'll make it out alive from a land where magic can be murder, the dead still talk, and vampires are always hungry for human blood.

Glen Cook is an enduring and popular writer with a large list of titles in print.  His Garrett, P.I. series has been a fan favorite since this book kicked off the series. 

Read an interesting interview our own Bryan Thomas Schmidt conducted with him, here

Next Month's Book:
It's not too early to begin reading next month's book, The Eidolon, by Libby McGugan.

This meeting will be on the fourth Monday, June 23, 2014, 7:00 p.m. at the Oak Park Barnes & Noble.

Overview from Barnes & Noble:
A contemporary SF thriller. The divide between science and the human spirit is the setting for a battle for the future.
When physicist Robert Strong loses his job at the Dark Matter research lab and his relationship falls apart, he returns home to Scotland. Then the dead start appearing to him, and Robert begins to question his own sanity. Victor Amos, an enigmatic businessman, arrives and recruits Robert to sabotage CERN’S Large Hadron Collider, convincing him the next step in the collider’s research will bring about disaster. Everything Robert once understood about reality, and the boundaries between life and death, is about to change forever. And the biggest change will be to Robert himself... Mixing science, philosophy and espionage, Libby McGugan’s stunning debut is a thriller like no other.
See a trailer for The Eidolon: 

IMAGE CREDITS: Cover art is by Tim Hildebrandt. This image is courtesy of Wikipedia. Buy Sweet Silver Blues from Barnes and Noble here.  The trailer for The Eidolon is from Libby McGugan's website, via YouTube.

May 15, 2014

May 17, 2014 KaCSFFS Meeting!

May Meeting
May KaCSFFS Meeting
3607 Pennsylvania Ave.
Kansas City, MO 64111
Saturday, May 17, 2014 

No Board meeting!!!!!
Business meeting: 7:00 p.m. (Pre-meeting at 6:30pm)
Food Theme:Samples of Memorial Day food. What brings back those old family memories?
Be thinking of what you want to bring to the June Picnic!

ConQuesT 45 is little over a week away!
If you haven't registered, please ACT NOW! 
Cut off is, TODAY! May 15 at 11:59pm for both Pre-Reg and Room Reservations!
The Room rate is $109/night + tax. The block dates run from Thursday, May 22nd through Monday, May 26th 2014.

Current Pre-reg stands at:

  • $50 - 3 day Adult
  • $45 - 3 day Military (with military id)
  • $20 - 3 day child (6-12 years old)
  • Prices will increase after tonight by $10! Register Now!

Don't forget to volunteer! It helps the convention and you get a chance to see the convention like most never have or will.

MAIN PROGRAMMING: Interview with Bryan Thomas Schmidt!

Our May meeting program will have a literary flare: Newly elected president of KaCSFFS, Ken Keller, will be interviewing science fiction editor, anthologist, and writer (ed: KaCSFFS member and contributor of this blog.) Bryan Thomas Schmidt! Learn what it takes to be a writer and editor in today's digital age.

Go check out BTS's website and blog at, and make sure to see what he's selling at Amazon.

Business Meeting!
There will be a normal business meeting following this month's main programming. 

It is highly recommended that all paid dues members attend this meeting. We will be considering the future of online club communications by voting on leaving YahooGroups for Google Groups.

Please discuss this topic on the current (and still active) KAXFEN Yahoo Group. Things to consider:

  • Ramifications of the move
  • Viability of the move
  • What will be gained
  • What will be lost
  • Share personal experiences with both systems 
  • Person impressions of Google Groups? 

The business meeting will include our usual monthly updates and announcements session. Please stick around to see what the club is up to and what cool things members are working on!

Plan now to attend the June Picnic Meeting!
Please be thinking of food to bring and fun activities. There will be presentation on the move to Google (if approved in the May meeting) and what is to be expected once the proposed move happens.

Please note that the June meeting is once again on our regular day, the third Saturday of the month (in this case June 21, 2014), full club meeting at 7:00 p.m.

IMAGE CREDITS: The image of The Writers Place is from the Writers Place website. The photo of Bryan Thomas Schmidt is from his website All reproductions of the above photos are © their respective owners and should not be reproduced without their permission.

May 10, 2014

KC Horror Book Club May 2014 Meeting


High Octane Damnation & Burden Kansas

By Brett Williams & Alan Ryker (respectively)

Date and Time: May 11, 2013 (Sunday) from noon to 1:30.
Location: The Green Room Burgers and Beer
Address: 4010 Pennsylvania Avenue, Suite D, Kansas City, MO.
Event Notes: 

High Octane Damnation  
By Brett Williams

"Comet Press publishes horror, suspense, and dark crime, so I was thrilled when they wanted to publish High Octane Damnation, especially since they appear to be gunning for the growing niche of hardcore horror/dark crime. High Octane Damnation certainly fits the bill, with its intense chase scenes, gut-wrenching violence, and diabolical revenge sequences. Of course no work of fiction that pays tribute to the grindhouse car flicks I grew up watching as a kid would be complete without the prerequisite sexy women thrown in for good measure. All of which adds up to a fun novella I’m sure readers will enjoy.

"If the gritty cover art revs your engine (great job, Comet Press!), them I’m sure you’ll want to uncap a cold beer and climb into the passenger seat with me, ’cause all hell is about to break loose on the road to High Octane Damnation."
-Brett Williams from his blog.

Burden Kansas
By Alan Ryker
Vampires are not sexy or sensitive. Hungry, bloody and stinking of the grave, they hunt the dry Kansas plains, taking what they want until they cross rancher Keith Harris. Keith is a damaged man who's always made the hard decisions others couldn't. As the two forces battle for survival, the lines between man and monster begin to blur. How much of a community's burden of sin can one man take on before becoming a monster himself? With Burden Kansas, Alan Ryker provides a contemporary novella of vampire horror written in the minimal voice of the western. Burden Kansas is more entertaining, disturbing and thought-provoking than you thought a vampire western could be.
-Sucker Punch Press.

Event description and write up by Earline Beebe.

Check the Facebook Event Page for more information.

Please contact Earline Beebe for more information on the Facebook event page.
Image from: SITE. Published by PUBLISHER.

May 05, 2014

Laser Rangers 2014 May Meeting

30's Serials the Way they Should Have Been
Date: May 10, 2014
Time: 4:50pm
Location: David Sooby’s home theater with 51-inch Samsung HDTV, a 5.1 Surround Sound Dolby Digital sound system, a full set of audiophile-grade speakers, and upgraded seating for about 15 people without crowding.
Captain Laser: Ken K. & Jaymes L.
Food: 30s
Costume: Diesel Punk

To learn more, please visit our Facebook Event Page.

Short features will be shown before each feature. Don't miss them!

The Rocketeer

(1991, 108 minuets) Directed by: Joe Johnston

Starring: Billy Campbell, Jennifer Connelly, Alan Arkin, Timothy Dalton, Paul Sorvino, Tiny Ron Taylor

A young pilot stumbles onto a prototype jetpack that allows him to become a high flying masked hero. -IMDB

Watch the trailer here!

After the first feature, please join us for a potluck dinner. Bring something to share. It can follow the theme, or be something you prefer.

Feature Presentation!
Sky Captain & The World of Tomorrow

(2004, 106 minuets) Directed by: Kerry Conran

Starring: Gwyneth Paltrow, Jude Law, Angelina Jolie

After New York City receives a series of attacks from giant flying robots, a reporter teams up with a pilot in search of their origin, as well as the reason for the disappearances of famous scientists around the world. -IMDB

Watch the trailer here!

The home of the Laser Rangers is located about four miles north of the Kansas Speedway, NW of the intersection of I-70 and I-435 on the Kansas side of the Greater Kansas City area.

IMAGE CREDITS: The information for all of these shows come from the invaluable IMDB. The movie posters come from Wikipedia or the movie's respected distributors. 

The movie screen frame image used for the Laser Rangers contact information is courtesy of Psychology Today Online. Many thanks to these websites!