Friday, January 4, 2013

The First Annual NecronomiCon Providence 2013 - Arriving August 23-25: Gearing up to Become the Premiere Lovecraftian Convention, Conference, and Celebration in the World

(c) Abigail Larson
We Lovecraftians are a scattered lot.  From the icy reaches of Scandinavia, to the further tip New Zealand, from the Indian subcontinent to central Mexico - we dwell.  Hell, I'd wager there are a few 'Craftians down Antarctica way, doing their occupational duty whilst keeping an eye on the horizon, looking for shadows cast by Mountains of Madness.

We are also prone to be a tad, say, "curmudgeony," to put it delicately.  We have too many books to read and night skies to contemplate and stories to write and songs to sing to venture too far into proper, square society.  When we do, it always ends up being such a waste of time, doesn't it?  The hearth and page is never a let down.

Finally, we are diverse, as much as that would shock HPL, and as much as that constantly delights me.  Cosmicism knows no race, gender, or creed.  The fantastical doesn't choose followers.  You either feel it in your marrow and up your tingling spine, or you don't.

All of these reasons - and many others - reinforce why gatherings devoted to Lovecraftiana are so important, and so interesting.  It gets us away from our tomes and into a predetermined gathering spot, all within easy reach of cocktails.  There is browsing to do and things to purchase - LOVECRAFTIAN THINGS!  Familiar faces abound, as do new people to meet.  The air is abuzz with happy talk of very dark things, and all seems RIGHT with the world amongst those who dream of days when the stars will be, too.

Now, conventions solely devoted to the works and influence of H.P. Lovecraft have come and gone over the years, but keeping that sustaining momentum going has been difficult.  With that said, I'm here to inform you that this unfortunate sporadicism might be a thing of the past, as devoted Lovecraftian and local Providence resident (Providencian?) Niels S. Hobbs has put together what looks like the Mother of All Lovecraftian Gatherings - the Shubby of the HPL Con scene, if you will:  NecronomiCon Providence 2013, coming this summer (which will be here before you know it), August 23-25.  After going through the planned program of this massive event, I think Hobbs and his ambitious band are going to accomplish their goal, folks.  Read on and tell me I'm wrong...

Please note:  This is a lengthy posting, full of wonderful and edifying information.  As such, be sure to scroll down completely for information on becoming a reward-draped backer via the NecronomiCon Providence 2013 Kickstarter (LESS THAN FOUR DAYS LEFT!), and the official Call for Abstracts, for those of the scholarly bend (like I sometimes pretend to be).

First, some background, lovingly provided by the organizers of NecronomiCon Providence:


Howard Phillips Lovecraft, born in Providence in 1890, is widely considered to be the father of modern supernatural fiction. In tribute to his legacy, the Lovecraft Arts and Sciences Council, Inc., a nonprofit organization based in his hometown, is organizing NecronomiCon Providence, a multi-faceted convention exploring the works of Lovecraft, his contemporaries, and the modern writers and artists that he continues to influence. This three-day event will feature renowned speakers, panel discussions, and workshops. Participants will be further rewarded with historic tours, art exhibits, film screenings, plays, and concerts that will immerse them in the city he loved and called home – Providence, Rhode Island.

Unusual for an event of this sort, we are working to bring attendees outside the traditional confining walls of the convention hall and into the streets to showcase and celebrate the character of Lovecraft’s city. Working with the municipality, area universities, and local businesses, we are creating a convention that will draw many people to Providence, and help to maintain its status as a destination city, a city that Lovecraft venerated, and immortalized in the minds of countless individuals around the world. It was in this centuries old city that Lovecraft was born, and where his literary mythologies were formed – and those ancient strains still resonate here today.

Theme: “The Rational Mind in Supernatural Literature” – an exploration of the intersection of art and science that lies at the foundation of the H. P. Lovecraft mythos literary genre. The name NecronomiCon is a tribute to the fictional ancient book of knowledge he conceived in his stories, and serves to underscore this theme.

Date: August 23-25, 2013, to coincide with Lovecraft birthday celebrations in Providence.

Subjects to be explored over the three-day convention:

· Literature: Science Fiction, Horror, Mythology…
· Science and Exploration: Astronomy, Archaeology, Biology…
· History: Primordial, Pre-Colombian, Colonial, 1920s…
· Culture: Art, Architecture, Cinema, Theater, Music, Poetry, Gaming, Food…

Many of the foremost Lovecraft mythos scholars and writers have signed on to be a part of this event, including S.T. Joshi, Robert M. Price, W.H. Pugmire, Caitlin R. Kiernan, Laird Barron, and many others. To date, there is already so much positive buzz in the literary and pop-culture community surrounding our plans, that this is expected to be the preeminent Lovecraft conference of the decade, and the largest convention of its kind anywhere in the world.

As we move past the formative steps, we are looking for SPONSORSHIPS and GRANT SUPPORT to help implement this long-overdue tribute to Providence’s own begotten. After more than a decade since the last Lovecraft convention in Providence, the roots have set for a newly invigorated NecronomiCon in August 2013. If you’d like to be a material part of this, with an anticipated audience of upwards of a thousand hungry and passionate fans from around the nation and the world, please contact us via email or phone listed below or through our website.

Niels Hobbs, director
Email:  keeper@necronomicon-providence.com  Phone: 401.743.3250  Web: necronomicon-providence.com

PROPOSED EVENTS

During the course of the three-day convention, NecronomiCon Providence will showcase a wide variety of engaging programs.

· Speakers and panel discussions covering all aspects of the Lovecraft legacy
· Art exhibits featuring local and international artists inspired by the tales of H.P. Lovecraft
· Film series highlighting cinematic works (full-length features and short films), including classics and new releases
· The infamous Cthulhu Prayer Breakfast, presided over by Robert M. Price
· Gaming rooms for the popular Mythos-based role-playing and board games
· A citywide scavenger hunt organized by the H.P. Lovecraft Historical Society
· Guided tours of Lovecraft’s Providence with stops at key locations in his life and stories
· Vendors representing publishers, authors, artists, cultural organizations, and Lovecraft-themed merchandise
· Collaborative exhibits with area museums, libraries, and observatory
· Workshops on prop-making, film production, and other hands-on activities
· Plays and other theater productions, including live productions of old-style radio shows
· Waterfire activities, including Lovecraft-themed vignettes by Big Nazo puppets
· Music concert, with internationally acclaimed acts
· Restaurant and bar night, highlighting the great cuisine offerings found in Providence.


SPONSORSHIPS AND PARTNERSHIPS

NecromoniCon Providence is organized by the Lovecraft Arts and Sciences Council, Inc., a nonprofit organization that dreams of bringing the world-renowned fame of Lovecraft back to its rightful home in Southern New England. We seek business partners, and municipal and state support in order to successfully achieve this dream – a goal with far-reaching benefits. We are presently asking for material resources, venue spaces, financial support, and active involvement from our community. Given the tremendous response we already have, we hope to make this a biennial event.  Our hope is to present Providence as a destination city, to that end all the bridges we build now are ones that will make a much stronger future.

The Lovecraft Arts and Sciences Council, Inc. is a non-profit organization based in Providence, Rhode Island. We are a networking center for scholars, authors, and fans exploring the literary world of H.P. Lovecraft and associated authors. We seek to examine the intersection of science and art that lies at the foundation of the H.P. Lovecraft literary genre. We work closely with experts and enthusiasts around the world to foster a critical review of related research, literature, art, and the cultural impact of Lovecraft’s writings on the modern world.

ABOUT THE TEAM

We strive to organize public educational events including NecronomiCon Providence – a biennial convention that explores the work of H.P. Lovecraft and that of his myriad literary and artistic offspring, via speakers, panel discussions, book readings, and workshops. We also organize historic tours, art exhibits, film screenings, plays, and concerts to highlight the world of Lovecraft with a particular emphasis on his home city of Providence – a city that Lovecraft honored and immortalized in the minds of countless individuals around the world.

NecronomiCon Providence is organized by a cabal of close friends and associates with a vision. A horrifying, horrifying vision. Join us in making our nightmares come true.

M. McArtor
Our Graphic Designer Mitch McArtor.

Anthony Teth
Web site of writer, occultist, and oddball, Anthony Teth.

Jay Gidwitz Web Design
The art web site of our web designer Jay Gidwitz.

Arkham Film Society
Josh Gravel and Scott Lefebvre run the Arkham Film Society in Providence, RI.
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Now, let's take care of some business, and provide you with some updates...

First of all, you have less than FOUR DAYS to kick this (in the words of Anthony Teth) "convention, conference, and celebration of all things Lovecraftian" further up into the cold, uncaring cosmos.

If this great video doesn't load, pounce on the provided link:

From the NecronomiCon Providence 2013 Kickstarter Page:

We're bringing Lovecraft back to Providence! Help us stage the greatest event in his memory ever, with renowned scholars and authors.

Resurrecting the Memory of Lovecraft... just a few more essential salts to go.

Dear Friends - we've been overwhelmed with the amount of support, positive feedback, and buzz we've gotten from Lovecraft scholars and fans, Weird Fiction authors and artists, and all manner of people who have a love for Hoary Providence.

Our plans are rapidly moving forward to bring the world the premier Lovecraft literary and scholarly conference and cultural convention, right here in the heart of Lovecraft's beloved hometown, August 23-25, 2013.

Resurrecting the Memory of Lovecraft... just a few more essential salts to go.

Dear Friends - we've been overwhelmed with the amount of support, positive feedback, and buzz we've gotten from Lovecraft scholars and fans, Weird Fiction authors and artists, and all manner of people who have a love for Hoary Providence.

Our plans are rapidly moving forward to bring the world the premier Lovecraft literary and scholarly conference and cultural convention, right here in the heart of Lovecraft's beloved hometown, August 23-25, 2013.

STRETCH GOALS

$19,000 - UNLOCKED!!! - We made it!! Now we will be able to have our good friend Jason Eckhardt, a local Lovecraftian artist of great renown, produce a gorgeous brand-new map poster of Lovecraftian sites around Providence and the wider region - absolutely suitable for framing.  Given this amazing support, we'll make this available both in pdf form for Download backers to Acolyte backers, and in print for Silver-Key and above backers. THANK YOU!

$23,000 - LOCKED -If we can make it to this level of commitment from all you devotees, we will be able to release an updated version of Jason Eckhardt's superb "Off the Ancient Track" Lovecraft travel chapbook, now long out of print. Given enough support, we'll make this available both in pdf form for Download backers to Acolyte backers, and in print for Silver-Key and above backers.

$25,000 - LOCKED -  After much machinating, fulminating, and otherwise plotting and devising some appropriately eldritch rewards for you all... we're still finalizing some of the details, but suffice it to say, this locked level includes a bunch more goodies for all Silver Key and above backers, made by our local and not so local artist friends - limited edition silkscreens of our amazing posters.

For ALL backers above the Acolyte level (i.e. PATRON and BENEFACTOR levels, and above) - a VERY gorgeous limited run amulet made ONLY for all backers above the basic Acolyte level... So, if you're a PATRON or a BENEFACTOR level backer, no matter the theme, you'll get one of these!

And, for ALL full-pass recipients, from PILGRIMAGE on up, you'll get a high-quality embroidered patch of our sigil design, as shown above.

Stay tuned for more (if our febrile minds can conjure more up!).

$60,000 - LOCKED - "We got a badass over here!!!" Wow, we must be nuts for even considering this, but it's been our dream to have Neil deGrasse Tyson come and join us, and give a keynote address explaining how Lovecraft's literary view of the universe is remarkably in line with present cosmology.  He is NOT cheap, though, and we simply can't skip other our more pressing immediate convention needs for this extravagance - but, with a little help? Backers at this level (we need four of them, each contributing $9,999 for this to work - fully refunded if it falls through for some reason), will definitely get dinner with the Man, AND absolutely everything else we offer - PLUS, we'll cover YOUR expenses, too - airfare, hotel, and meals! Does that sweeten the pot enough?

Prepare yourselves!

Anoint your feet!

The time for the Pilgrimage is nearly upon us!
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CALL FOR ABSTRACTS

Seeking new Lovecraft-related research for NecronomiCon Providence, 2013

The Lovecraft Arts and Sciences Council, Inc. (the organizer of NecronomiCon Providence) is seeking submissions of academic works that explore all aspects of the works and life of famed weird fiction writer, H.P. Lovecraft, including the influence of history, architecture, science (anthropology, biology, geology, etc), and popular culture (movies, theater, etc), on his works.

We particularly hope to foster exploration of Lovecraft as a rationalist who created an elaborate cosmic mythology, and how this mythology was influenced by, and has come to influence, numerous other authors and artists before and since. However, all submissions that contribute to a greater understanding of Lovecraft and associated authors and artists of “weird tales” (science fiction, fantasy, horror, etc) are encouraged.
For this component of the Convention, we are particularly interested in soliciting novel work from young or new academics. If selected, presenters should be prepared to deliver a twenty minute oral presentation summarizing their thesis, and are invited to submit a brief MS for possible inclusion in a proceedings publication.

Selected talks will be presented together as part of a mini-conference within the overall convention framework of NecronomiCon Providence, August 23-25, 2013. Interested scholars, whether faculty, graduate, undergraduate, or independent, should send a 250-300 word abstract, preferably in .doc or .pdf format, to keeper@necronomicon-providence.com by May 23, 2013 for consideration.

For more information on our convention, to learn more about the themes to be explored, and to sign up for email updates, please visit our website: necronomicon-providence.com

NB: In addition to these talks, NecronomiCon Providence will also feature numerous traditional panels and presentations given by many of the top names in the Lovecraftian community.

Check this link for further details.
___________________________________________________________________________

Act fast and get in line, kiddies.  Don't let this historic event go down without you.

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