Award winners at the 2009 Campbell Conference Awards Banquet
Cory Doctorow, Ian MacLeod, James Alan Gardner (James Gunn in
background). Photo by
The Campbell Conference is the central feature of the summer SF program: It concludes the Writers Workshop in Science Fiction,
and the Novel Writers Workshop in Science Fiction,
led by Kij Johnson, a
multiple-award-winning author of science fiction and fantasy and assistant
professor in the University's MFA writing program. It also
kicks off the
Intensive Institute on the Teaching of Science Fiction.
Held annually at the University of Kansas
since 1978 (except for the special joint event in 2007
with SFRA and the Heinlein Centennial), the Conference provides
a setting for presenting science-fiction honors:
The Conference unofficially begins on Friday afternoon with an informal discussion about
the profession of SF
writing as the concluding event of the Writing Workshops.
After a break, we gather for the Awards Ceremony and Banquet on Friday evening,
followed by a reception to congratulate the winners.
Saturday morning is devoted to a (often round-table) discussion centered on our
theme, followed by a group book-signing event. The afternoon usually offers readings, presentations, or other
events, followed by an evening
reception to gather and talk more intimately about what was said (or left
unsaid) in the large groups. Sunday events open with a morning discussion
Campbell Award and Sturgeon Award
winners and the other attendees, and then we wrap up with an informal afternoon get-together.
In prior years, Ruth Lichtwardt
and KaCSFFS have graciously hosted the event, and KU Paleontologist Larry Martin's
family have continued his regular "Science Fiction Sunday" gatherings at
their gorgeous home.
We invite winners of the Campbell and Sturgeon awards (and often their
editors) to the event, where they are Guests of Honor and receive trophies to take
names are also engraved on the permanent trophies
that remain on display at the Center's office).
Planning is in the early stages, so check back for more details. See the
schedule of events for updates!
Campbell Conference book signing from 2008
Kij Johnson, James Gunn, Chris McKitterick, and Frederik Pohl.
Registration news: New student and local SF club rates this year. Register early for savings!
Special Guests for 2015
In addition to area authors and other guest authors and editors, the Campbell Conference usually brings to Lawrence the winners of the
Campbell Award and Sturgeon
Award as Guests of Honor. CSSF Director
James Gunn is our permanent Special Guest. During the
autograph session on Saturday, the bookstore will have available many works from
these fine folks for you to purchase and get signed. This year's guests will be
announced as plans firm, but here's what we have so far:
Robin Wayne Bailey is the author of many novels and short works, including
"The Children's Crusade," a 2007 Nebula nominee. He's edited two notable
Architects of Dreams: The SFWA Author Emeritus Anthology. Mr. Bailey is a past president of SFWA and was a key player
in the 1996 creation of the Science Fiction & Fantasy Hall of Fame.
M.C. Chambers writes science fiction and fantasy. Her first novel, Shapers' Veil,
was published by Hadley Rille
Books. Her short work includes "Silk and Velvet" in the anthology
Renaissance Festival Tales and an award-winning science fiction story,
"Visual Silence," in the anthology
Return to Luna.
She has been a member of the Noble Fusion writers group since 1998. She is also a flute player, a mother of five, and a variable print programmer.
Karin Rita Gastreich
is an author and teacher whose fantasy novel,
Eolyn, is available from
Hadley Rille Books,
and the sequel,
High Maga, comes out in 2014. Her short works have
appeared in a number of publications. She lived for ten years in Costa Rica,
where she directed
a study-abroad program in tropical ecology and environmental policy for Duke University and the Organization for Tropical Studies.
She recently returned to Kansas City and is now Assistant Professor of
Biology at Avila University.
Tessa Gratton writes speculative YA fiction since she
couldn't find any wizards to teach her how to use magic and there isn't
a market for dinosaur handlers these days. Her debut novel
Blood Magic, its sequel
The Blood Keeper, and
The Lost Sun: United States of Asgard all came out from Random House Children's Books. You can find her online at
tessagratton.com or on her short story blog,
James Gunn is a science
fiction author and historian, KU professor emeritus of English, Founding
the Center for the Study of Science Fiction, and
SFWA Grand Master. He is a past president of
both SFRA and SFWA, and
chairs the Campbell Award jury to select the best science-fiction novel of
the year. Dr. Gunn is on the advisory board of the Science Fiction & Fantasy Hall of Fame.
Matthew Jacobson is an Associate
Professor in the Department of Film and Media Studies at the University
of Kansas, where he teaches film and media production. Matt
is also a cinematographer, producer, and director, with over 40 feature
film and video credits to his name. As Director of Photography, Matt has
taken three feature films to the Sundance Film Festival - a rare
achievement for most working filmmakers, much less those who teach
full-time. Matt's latest projects are two new feature films with
creative partner and fellow KU professor Kevin Willmott;
Destination: Planet Negro!
(a science fiction comedy satire), and
Jayhawkers, about legendary coach Forrest C. "Phog" Allen
and his most famous recruit at KU, Wilt Chamberlain. Both
are tentatively scheduled for release in 2014.
Kij Johnson's fantasy and SF novels and short stories have
Sturgeon Award (where she now serves as juror), World Fantasy Award
(which she also serves as juror), Nebula Award
(three times), IAFA Crawford Award, and Hugo Award. Kij is Associate Director of the Center, teaches the
& Fantasy Novel Writing Workshop, as well as a number of other regular-semester writing and fantasy-related courses at KU, and is Assistant Professor of Fiction
Writing in the University of Kansas English Department.
is an author, editor,
and faculty member at the University of Kansas, where he serves
as CSSF Director and teaches
fiction writing, creative writing, and
science fiction, and serves on the
Award jury. His short fiction, nonfiction,
and essays have been published in a number of magazines and anthologies,
and his debut novel, Transcendence,
was published by
Hadley Rille Books. Chris teaches the
CSSF Speculative Fiction Writers Workshop
and Intensive Institute on the Study of SF,
as well as a number of other regular-semester writing and SF courses at KU.
Mike Page teaches science fiction and other English courses at the University of Nebraska-Lincoln. He's the editor of a collection of stories,
The Man with the Strange Head, by Miles J. Breuer, an early science fiction pioneer.
His critical study
The Literary Imagination from Erasmus Darwin to H.G. Wells: Science, Evolution, and Ecology, explores the intersections between literature and science in the nineteenth century.
His latest essay on Golden Age science fiction and ecology appears in
Green Planets: Ecology and Science Fiction, edited by Gerry Canavan and Kim Stanley Robinson.
He is currently completing a book on Frederik Pohl for the Modern Masters of Science Fiction series from the University of Illinois Press.
Eric T. Reynolds is the publisher and editor of Hadley Rille Books
and writes about science, space, and archaeology. Eric is a member of SFWA and Broad
Universe and a graduate of the Speculative Fiction Writers Workshop. (Note:
Eric's travel status is uncertain at the moment - will update when we know more.)
was born in Miami, Florida, the daughter of two scientists, and grew up
as the first human member of their menagerie. She attended the Odyssey
workshop, the Center for the Study of Science Fiction novel and short
story workshops, and received a BA in Creative Writing from Beloit
College. She is the author of
and Kings & Assassins.
Under the name Lyn Benedict, she writes the urban fantasy series
Sins & Shadows. In 2015, her (still untitled) romantic
mystery will be published by Blind Eye Books. Her short fiction has been
published recently in Strange Horizons, Penumbra, and is
forthcoming in Nightmare Magazine. Robins currently resides in
Lawrence, KS, but lives in worlds full of cannibal fairies, modern
knights, and little girls who can turn their pigtails into snakes.
Thomas Schmidt is an author and editor of adult and
children's speculative fiction. His debut novel, The Worker Prince, received
honorable mention on Barnes & Noble's Year's Best SF of 2011, and
was followed by two sequels, The Returning and The Exodus. His
children's books include 102 More Hilarious Dinosaur Jokes For Kids, and Abraham Lincoln: Dinosaur Hunter - Land Of Legends. Schmidt has edited the anthologies Space Battles: Full Throttle Space Tales #6, Beyond The Sun, Raygun Chronicles: Space Opera For a New Age, and, with Jennifer Brozek, Shattered
Shields. Schmidt hosts #sffwrtcht (Science Fiction & Fantasy Writer's Chat) on Twitter.
Jeremiah Tolbert is
is a freelance web designer/developer operating as
Clockpunk Studios, a
writer of science fiction and fantasy short fiction, and a nature
photographer. He is also human, male, in his mid-30s, married,
with two cats. He was born in Kansas, and now resides there once again,
after detours to Iowa, Kenya, Wyoming, and Colorado.
Kevin Willmott wrote and directed
the critically acclaimed film
The Confederate States Of
America, about an America where the South won the Civil War.
His other feature films include
The Only Good Indian,
Battle for Bunker Hill,
Destination: Planet Negro! and
television, Willmott co-wrote with Mitch Brian House Of Getty and
'70s, both mini-series for NBC.
In 2005, he produced High-Tech Lincoln, a special which premiered on The
History Channel. As a screenwriter, Willmott co-wrote Shields Green And
The Gospel Of John Brown, Civilized Tribes, and Little Brown Brothers, about the Philippine Insurrection and to
adapt the book Marching To Valhalla by Michael Blake. Willmott
adapted The Watsons Go To Birmingham for CBS, and
directed a stage version of The Watsons Go To Birmingham in New York and
at Kansas City's Coterie Theater. The play T-Money And Wolf,
written with Ric Averill, was
produced by the Kennedy Center in Washington, DC. Willmott directed the premiere
performances of Now Let Me Fly, a new play by Marcia Cebulska
commemorating the 50th anniversary of Brown v. Board of Education.
The Campbell Award and
Sturgeon Award winners are always invited to be present
to receive their awards, and their editors
often attend, as well.
More guests TBA!
Keep your eye out for talks and readings by and about these special guests!
We will continue to update the guest list until shortly before the Conference
Special Guests from 2004
George Zebrowski (Campbell Award
winner and Sturgeon Award juror), Frederik Pohl (the only two-time
Campbell winner, 1978 and 1985), Gregory Benford (Campbell 1981), Jack McDevitt (Campbell
2004), Brian Aldiss (1983 Campbell winner, SF&F Hall of Fame inductee,
and First Fandom Hall of Fame inductee), and Hall of Fame inductee
Aldiss and Harrison created the Campbell Award in 1972. Photo courtesy Karen Gunn.
Inspirations for this year's discussion
This year, we examine the future of science fiction, especially the teaching
and study of SF in the near future, during our Saturday round-table discussion as well as with presentations on Saturday afternoon.
Some materials to get you thinking to come....
Schedule of Events
Stay tuned: This is a working draft of the schedule, which will likely grow as new special guests
confirm and as we add other events of interest to SF scholars and educators.
Your packet will have all the up-to-date info!
Friday, June 12
- 2:00pm - 4:00pm: "Secrets of Successful Speculative Fiction" discussion with
our attending guest authors as the concluding event of the Workshops. This is of special
interest to our workshop attendees, though all Campbell Conference registrants with
writing aspirations are welcome to join.
- 6:00pm - 9:00pm: Awards Ceremony and Banquet celebrating the
John Campbell Award
for best SF novel
of the year, as well as the Theodore Sturgeon Award for best
short SF of the year.
Eating during the Banquet costs extra, but all Conference attendees are invited to attend.
The Awards Ceremony (starts at about 7:00pm) follows the meal.
Even if you do not intend to eat dinner, you must contact
Lydia Ash (firstname.lastname@example.org) in advance so we can
make sure to arrange for seating!
- Evening: Reception immediately following Awards Ceremony
to congratulate the winners and rub elbows with other attendees and
guests. Wine and beer provided.
Campbell Award, Sturgeon Award, and SFRA Pilgrim Award together in 2007
Saturday, June 13
- 9:00am – noon: Round-table discussion.
This year's topic: "The Future of Science Fiction: Reading, Teaching, Sharing."
- Noon – 12:45pm: Break for lunch.
The Kansas Union plans to open some of their small restaurants just for
us! Several other eating establishments are nearby; if you wish to
dine at the Oread a block away or downtown, click here
to see a good list of Lawrence restaurants.
- 12:45pm – 1:30pm: Group autograph session with attending
authors and editors.
Location: Jayhawk Ink Book Store, Level 2, Kansas Union.
You can purchase
current, recent, and even some rare books by the authors in the bookstore,
as the buyers make sure we're well supplied for the autograph session!
We usually plan for Conference attendees to be able to get a copy of the
Sturgeon Award-winning short story, and to be able to purchase the Campbell
Award-winning novel. This event is free and open to the public.
- 1:45pm – 4:30pm: Readings, presentations, and
discussion about this year's topic.
- 4:30pm – 6:30pm: Break for dinner.
- 9:00pm: For those still up for more, an informal evening gathering
in downtown Lawrence to talk more
intimately about what was said (or left unsaid) in the day's discussion, and
spend some small-group time with our special guests.
Location: Wherever you prefer!
Sunday, June 14
- 10:00am – noon: Sunday events begin with a morning "Meet
the authors and editors" discussion between the
Campbell Award and Sturgeon Award
winners and the other attendees. Some pastries and beverages provided.
- Noon – 12:45pm: Break for lunch.
to see a good list of Lawrence restaurants.
- 1:30pm - late afternoon: "Science Fiction
Sunday." Continuing the tradition begun by
Larry Martin, we gather after lunch for an informal afternoon
salon of intelligent conversation and great company at his lovely family home, co-hosted by Jean Martin and Amanda
Location: (information in your
Campbell Conference round-table discussion, 2007
Registration and Costs
- Friday afternoon events.
- Friday night reception and refreshments.
- Awards ceremony (no dinner) on Friday.
Note: You must let us
know that you will
attend, or we cannot provide seating.
- Book signing on Saturday.
- Saturday evening events.
- Saturday night reception
- Sunday morning talk with guests.
- Sunday afternoon gathering.
Registration June 1 and later or at the door: $40.
This year, we offer several special
- Early bird registration (until June 1): $35.
- Lawrence or Kansas City science-fiction club members
(with proof of membership): $30.
- ConQuest convention attendees
- Students (with proof of student status): $20.
- Registered attendees of the summer workshops or SF
Institute: included in course registration.
Awards Banquet only
- Meal during Friday evening Awards Ceremony.
- Soft drinks and iced tea.
Banquet registration: $25.
Note: Register early to ensure that we can accommodate you for dinner. To attend Awards Ceremony only (but not dinner),
please contact Lydia Ash (email@example.com) in advance for guaranteed seating.
- All above events, plus:
- Meal during Friday evening Awards Ceremony.
- Soft drinks and iced tea.
Conference registration plus banquet registration.
Free and Public Events
- Book signing on Saturday.
- Readings on Saturday.
Open to the public - no need to register.
To attend some or all of the Conference activities, please
this electronic form.
Feel free to drop us an email
with any questions: Lydia Ash (firstname.lastname@example.org)
Housing for the 2015 Campbell Conference
Lawrence offers several hotels within walking distance (or a
short drive) from the locations of our activities. Our official housing is in the lovely new
Oread Hotel, where
previous years' activities have taken place. It is only one block north of our
Saturday and Sunday activities in the Kansas Union. Prices are higher than at
other local hotels, so be sure to mention the CSSF Campbell Conference for
the event-discount rate. Contact them directly to reserve a room.
Information: (785)843-1200 or toll-free at (877)263-6347.
Reservations are open Monday - Friday, 8:30am-6:00pm (Central time); Saturday
10:00am - 3:00pm; and Sunday 10:00am - 3:00pm.
More details as we get them.
To attend some or all of the Conference activities, please complete this
registration form available online and submit it to Lydia Ash (email@example.com).
See this map of the University of Kansas to find your way:
Meals are available in a variety of wonderful restaurants, and Lawrence
offers at least one fine micro-brewery. Check out
Yelp for a list of just a
few of the local eating establishments.
Campbell and Sturgeon winners from 2007
Campbell Award winner
Ben Bova, and Sturgeon Award winner Robert Charles
Feel free to drop us an email with any questions:
Transportation from Airport to Lawrence
This year's Conference takes place in Lawrence, Kansas.
Many transport services offer rides between the Kansas City International
(MCI - the "M" is for "Mid-Continent") airport and Lawrence, including:
- Better Alternative Transportation Services (BATS): 24/7 door-to-door service; individual rates.
- Roadrunner (also known as
"KCI Airport Shuttle"): individual rates; departs from the
(Lawrence Holiday Inn)
at specific times. Toll-free phone contact number: (800)747-2524 or call
your travel agent.
- SDM Transportation: 24/7 door-to-door service; offers airport shuttles or luxury cars with individual rates.
- Jayhawk Taxi: 24/7 door-to-door service; fixed rate to the airport for 1-2 passengers.
- Super Shuttles: 24/7 door-to-door service; group rates; discount if you use the group discount code: S6Q2W.
- Five Guys Shuttle: 24/7 door-to-door service; rates per van, not per person.
- Here 2 There Shuttle: 24/7 DD service, airport shuttle, and reservations for special events. Can hold up to 10 passengers at once. Call or text 785-380-8879 or email
- KCI Express Shuttle
offers pickup and delivery right to our dorm or your hotel for only $5 more than the
normal rate. Phone Reservations: (816)645-1815. After 8:00 PM CST (816)372-1556.
- Ground Transportation Services, Inc, is a local Lawrence business
that provides 24/7 taxi service within Lawrence, and the surrounding areas. They also operate daily door-to-door shuttle service from Lawrence to the Kansas City Airport. (888)467-3729 or
(785)838-4500. See a schedule here.
- Reserve well in advance of your trip to confirm pricing and availability.
- KCI stands for "Kansas City International
though the official airport code changed to MCI -
"Mid-Continent International Airport" - a few years ago.
- This list is for your information only. KU
and the Gunn Center are not affiliated with these services.
Here's a cropped map of the University of Kansas (click the image to see image
Here's a map showing where KU is located in Eastern Kansas:
Kansas Union map (in .pdf
routes and maps.
Google Maps centered on the KU Kansas Union.
Unfortunately, this summer KU is enduring lots of road construction. See this map for details (click the image to see
image in full-screen):
Lawrence in the Summer
For anyone who hasn't visited,
Lawrence is wonderful,
a lively small city in the Kaw River valley, filled with
art, events, and activities.
The location of the University of Kansas, Lawrence is situated about 40 miles from Kansas City and 20 miles from Topeka.
Summers can be hot, but classrooms and housing are air-conditioned.
Among its many amenities, the University of Kansas has a large
science-fiction collection and excellent reference collections, including the
newly acquired Sturgeon papers; museums of natural
history and art; and sports, theater, and concerts. Lawrence has excellent
restaurants and shopping and recreational opportunities. Kansas City is less
than an hour away.
The nearest major airport is Kansas City International, about 55 miles from
Lawrence. Transportation to Lawrence from Kansas City International can be
arranged through one of several airport shuttle services. By car, Lawrence is at
the intersection of U.S. 59 and I-70 (Kansas Turnpike). The west interchange is
closer to the campus. Lawrence can also be reached by Kansas Highway 10.
Find out all about Lawrence -
its history, stores, museums, observatories, and SFnal activities - here.
Contact us for any logistical help you
might need in getting settled for your stay:
Lydia Ash ( CSSF@ku.edu )
Click the links below to see reports about previous Campbell Conferences.
Photos from Past Conferences
Click the links below to see Keith Stokes'
MidAmerican Fan photo-archives of
previous years' activities.