The Rosemont Hyatt, which was hosting Midwest Furfest, was evacuated just before 1 am on December 7 following a chlorine leak, which police are treating as an intentional spill. The leak occurred Saturday night during parties on either the ninth or tenth floor of the hotel, resulting in the evacuation and the hospitalization of nineteen con members. Attendees were permitted to return to their rooms at 3:30 in the morning.
English fan Sue Mason has been named the winner of the 2014 Rotsler Award for best fan artist. Mason has previously been won the Hugo Award twice and has been active in Plokta, She has won the Nova seven times. Some of her work may be seen in the chapbook I Want to Be a Celtic Death Goddess When I Grow Up. The Rotsler Award is sponsored by the Southern California Institute for Fan Interests. Established in 1998, the award carries an honorarium of US$300. Claire Brialey, Mike Glyer, and John Hertz served as this year’s judges.
Fan artist Stu Shiffman (b.1954) died on November 26. Shiffman won a Best Fan Artist Hugo in 1990. From 1999 until 2014, he served as a judge for the Sidewise Awards for Alternate History. Shiffman suffered a stroke two years ago and had been recovering before a fall earlier this year. Earlier this year, he married long-time companion Andi Schechter.
The Nova Award winners were announced the weekend of November 14 at Novacon. The Nova Awards are presented to recognize excellence in British fanzine publishing and writing.
- Fanzine: Vibrator, edited by Graham Charnock
- Fanwriter: Christina Lake
- Fanartist: D West
Washington area fan John Madigan was diagnoses with brain cancer last year and his medical bills are mounting. He and wife Candy, who have hosted the Washington Science Fiction Association’s 3rd Friday meetings for several years, have started a Youcaring campaign to try to help raise funds to cover JOhn’s medical bills and household expenses.
CANSMOF has announced that Jean-Louis Trudel (Québec City, Canada) and Jared Dashoff (Washington, DC) are the recipients of this year’s SMOFCon scholarships. Both recipients will receive aid to attend this year’s SMOFCon in Manhattan Beach, CA and are required to write a report about the event for CANSMOF.
Fan Vijay deSelby-Bowen (b.Velma J. Bowen) died on October 18 following a lengthy battle with cancer. Vijay entered fandom in 1982 and was the 1999 TAFF delegate, following in the footsteps of her cousin, Elliott Shorter. She served as secretary of the Lunarians and helped run Lunacon. She eventually moved to Seattle with her long-time companion Soren “Scraps” deSelby.
Travers Milo, who won the Canadian Unity Fan Fund (CUFF) in an unopposed race, was unable to attend VCon as part of his CUFF duties, has now resigned as fund administrator, citing previous volunteer and personal commitments. Former CUFF winner Debra Yeung has agreed to pick up the administrator duties until a new successor can be selected.
Game Designer Brianna Wu and her husband, Frank, were forced out of their home after Brianna received death threats over twitter which also revealed the couple’s home address. Police worked with the Wus to get them to a safe space, calling the threats credible, and Twitter shut down the offending account. Wu is believed to have been targeted because of comments she has made about misogyny rampant in the gaming community. Frank has written that they are currently okay, but suggests that anyone who wants to help can do so “by contributing to her friends’ legal fund.”
Canadian fan Ann Methe died on October 5 following a battle with cancer. Methe was a Canadian con-runner who chaired Con*Cept Boreal in 1998 and won the Aurora Award for fannish achievement in 1999, as well as being nominated for the award in 1998 and 2000. She was married to artist Jean-Pierre Normand.