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The reason for this book is pretty straightforward. I was in charge of Publications for a regional science fiction convention, Westercon 70, held in Tempe over the 4th July weekend in 2017, and needed to print a program guide.
I felt that publishing it as a trade paperback would be a viable approach for a number of reasons. One, I knew what I was doing, having published five previous books. Two, I was using all the same software to do the job. Three, I don't like large format folded program guides because they don't stack, they don't fit well on shelves and they're hard to carry around. Four, the book would always cost the same to the convention's sponsoring body, even if we needed to print more copies. Five, it could remain online at Amazon after the event to potentially generate a little income for the non-profit body who sponsored the event.
I also had the idea of getting participants to contribute material in the form of short stories or artwork, but time constraints meant that this never happened. I'll keep it mind for future events where I wear fewer hats.
It worked out well. The cost was cheaper than getting a less convenient publication done at an offset printer. Boxes were easy to carry, books were easy to stack and the audience enjoyed the approach.
Usually, I have to look for cover artists but there was one inherent here because Westercon 70 was also LepreCon 43, a local science fiction convention with a particular focus on art. It's traditional for our Artist Guest of Honor to provide artwork for the cover.
In our case, that's Julie Dillon, an insanely good artist who had won two Hugo Awards as Best Professional Artist (and won the next one too). This particular piece is called Skyward Bound.
The graphic design was handled by Jason Drotman, who created our logo and added the text over the image.
I created the maps on the back cover myself.
It's typeset in Gentium Plus, which is a newer version of the Gentium font I used in all four of my previous books. It's the same great font but the spacing is much better. This is an source font, released under the SIL Open Font License, which means that it can be used, modified and redistributed for free.
I make all my own books through a Creative Commons license but, even though I wrote most of this one and edited the rest, I did so for Leprecon, Inc., a 501(c)(3) non-profit organisation, so this book is copyright to them.
So please download a PDF of Westercon 70 Program Guide from the link below, read it and share it with others so that it can reach as wide an audience as possible. Remember, piracy is not the enemy; obscurity is the enemy!
Buy a Print Copy
Of course, nobody gets paid from a free download so, if you enjoy the book, please consider buying a print copy to show your appreciation. All proceeds will go to the LepreCon, Inc. 501(c)(3) non-profit organisation, which exists to promote the arts and sciences in Arizona through an annual science fiction convention called LepreCon. The cost is tax-deductible.
Westercon 70 Program Guide is the sixth book published by Apocalypse Later Press (I donated the ISBN) and the first book I edited rather than wrote. Other technical details are:
Catalogue Number: W70
Last update: 15th February, 2018