On April 13, 2003,
the Minnesota Science Fiction Society (Minn-StF) invited me to come to Minneapolis
next Easter weekend, braving the cold and snow and frozen corpses...okay,
probably not. Probably it will be colder in Boston next Easter than
it will be in Minneapolis. And I'm sure there won't really be people-sicles
on the sidewalks of the Twin Cities.
On coming to Minicon 39...
But all my life I've heard about the cooooolllllldddddd northern mid-west
of the U.S. My mother lived in Fargo, North Dakota as a child. (It
should be noted that this had a disasterous impact on her adult life. She
has a button that reads, "I am the mother of all things. And all things
will wear a sweater." When I was growing up, any winter clothing that
allowed any skin to show was *bad* winter clothing. Like we were
going to get lured into the wilderness and become a light snack for bears
with a taste for frozen Ohioans. We lived in Cleveland's suburbs, for
goshsakes.) She never got over it. Not really.
I've heard about the outlets in parking garages for plugging
in block heaters. We've heard about the "frozen tundra of Lambeau..."
Oh, nevermind. That's Green Bay. But still, Minneapolis is way up
there, so I've always assumed Minnesotans were inured to frostbite, and the
rest of us would die. (I've read, after all, the stuff about the
Minnesotan Annotated Thermometer
So anyway, Minn-StF (through the email of their ambassador
Geri Sullivan) sent me this lovely invitation. Out of the blue. To
be a guest and all. At their convention. I don't mean to sound
(well, read -- you can't hear me) ingenuous. I'm still pretty amazed
every time I think about this, and I'll probably grin my way through Easter
weekend next year (although mom says to keep your mouth closed outside, since
if the temperature gets too low and you're out long enough, when you come
inside and drink a cup of cocoa, your teeth crack)(mom's occasionally a
And I got this invitation, and I thought about it a bit,
and I checked to make sure it wasn't addressed to someone else, and then
I talked to my husband Mike Benveniste, and then I said, "This is so cool;
of course I'll come!" (Only it took something like five screens of
email for me to say that.)
having a web page...
Then I discovered I had a problem. My job includes teaching
students how to use the Web and all about the history of the internet, and
I've written a few hundred pages of HTML or done web pages on editors, and
I don't have my own web pages. Well, I have my own domains and web
pages, but they're not personal pages. They won't tell you anything about
me. And then I see that most guests have some kind of web page where people
can find out who this person is they've never heard of. So you get
...and telling you who I am...
Deb Geisler is a 45-year-old fan who lives 20 miles from Boston, Massachusetts,
works on conventions, has edited books for NESFA Press, and has a deep and
abiding loathing for the color pink.
My "home" convention is Boskone, an annual convention in
will be held in February 2004. I was the chairman
Boskone 36, in 1999,
and I've worked in every Boskone area except treasury and
childcare. I've helped out at a number of other conventions, and I'm currently
the chairman of Noreascon
the 62nd World Science Fiction Convention, Boston, Massachusetts,
Boskone is the annual labor of love of the
New England Science Fiction Association
, which also runs NESFA Press.
is a totally volunteer small press, which features books
by convention guests of honor (both Boskone guests and some Worldcon guests)
and the "NESFA Choice" series of books -- high-quality hardcover and trade
paperbacks designed to bring out-of-print authors back into the public eye.
I've edited two NESFA Press books: Tomorrow Happens, by David
Brin (2003) and Expecting Beowulf, by Tom Holt (2002). NESFA editors
don't get paid for their work (and even have to buy their own copy of the
book), but we do get enormous satisfaction.
As for my hatred of pink, well, it has to do with flamingoes.
If you want the whole story, you need to work through my discussion
of how we worked to bring the Worldcon to Boston in 2004. It starts
on p. 20 of
Noreascon Four's first progress report.
Professionally, I am a university professor at
in Boston. My field is
communication and journalism,
and part of my job is to act as Graduate Program Director
for our department. You can see the work of one of my students at
(a domain my husband and I bought some while back). This
was the best page designed last year in three introductory classes in the
fall semester. The site will change at the end of this fall semester,
to display a new student's work. If you wish, you can see some of the material
I put up for my classes (try
CJN 721: E-communities & the Digital Divide
as a sample).
My SF&F interests are fairly eclectic, running the gamut
from the profound to the silly. My most recent guilty pleasure is
a large series of murder mysteries by J.D. Robb (a pseudonym for romance
writter Nora Roberts) set some 50 years in (an improbable) future. I
like television and films but don't watch a lot of them (the result of a
weird schedule and no TIVO, probably). My other interests include homebrewing,
cooking, minimalist gardening (we have a deck and too much wildlife, so we've
got a "deck farm"), making jewelry, and sleeping.
My husband is Michael Benveniste, a software architect with
a legal background, a love of good SF&F, and a low taste for puns. He
is an amazing man, and I'm very thankful we found each other. Mike
is 20 hours older than I am. He never forgets my birthday.
If you want to send
me email, do please feel free. Write me at
. But please don't try to sell me Viagra, a penis enlarger, an Internet
Spy device, or a sure-fire kit for making millions at home by stuffing envelopes.
I've got all of those.