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Readercon is an annual science fiction convention, held every July in the Boston, Massachusetts area, in Burlington, Massachusetts. It was founded by Bob Colby and statistician Eric Van in the mid-1980s [1] with the goal of focusing almost exclusively on science fiction/fantasy/slipstream/speculative fiction in the written form (on the rare occasion that there is a discussion held about non-written science fiction, it will have a tongue-in-cheek title such as "Our biannual media panel").[2] Past guests of honor have included authors such as Greer Gilman, Gene Wolfe, Octavia Butler, Samuel R. Delany, Karen Joy Fowler, Brian Aldiss, Nalo Hopkinson, Joe Haldeman, Caitlín R. Kiernan, Peter Straub, and China Miéville, and editors such as Ellen Datlow and David G. Hartwell. The convention also makes a point of honoring a deceased author as the Memorial Guest of Honor. In 2009, for instance, the guests of honor were the living writers Elizabeth Hand and Greer Gilman and the memorial guest of honor was Hope Mirrlees.[3]

GenreScience fiction
Location(s)Boston, Massachusetts
CountryUnited States

Total attendance at the convention has been consistently around 850 for many years.[4]

From 2005 to 2011, Readercon was the official venue for presentation of the Rhysling Award.[5] It has hosted the Shirley Jackson Awards since their founding in 2007.[6]


  1. ^ Shanahan, Mark. "His numbers are in the ballpark: Eric Van is an eccentric genius who's obsessed with statistics. And this season he's on the Red Sox payroll." Boston Globe June 23, 2005
  2. ^ Gunderson, Matt. "Glitz an alien concept to these sci-fi fans: Burlington confab has literate focus" Boston Globe July 13, 2006
  3. ^ See the website for many details including a full roster of guests of honor ("Guests" tab), and program descriptions from 1997 to present ("Program" tab).
  4. ^
  5. ^ Silver, Steven H (2009-07-13). "Rhysling Winners". SF Site News. SF Site. Retrieved 2011-04-14.
  6. ^ "2010 Shirley Jackson Awards Nominees". Shirley Jackson Award Website. 2011-04-14. Archived from the original on 2011-04-17. Retrieved 2011-04-14.

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