Volunteers needed!

We need 3+ volunteers to form a Communications Server Migration Working Group.  Duties include: find a suitable cloud server and work with the current physical server owner to migrate our data and video to the new server. This temporary working group will report to the Gap Planning committee, which meets twice monthly. Prior service migration experience helpful. Contact personnel@sf3.org (subject: Server Migration Working Group) for more information.


Vounteer Opportunity: Server Migration Working Group

We need 3+ volunteers to form a Communications Server Migration Working Group.

Duties include: find a suitable cloud server and work with the current physical server owner to migrate our data and video to the new server. This temporary working group will report to the Gap Planning committee, which meets twice monthly. Prior service migration experience helpful.

Contact personnel@sf3.org (subject: Server Migration Working Group) for more information.

Disability Audit

WisCon is conducting a Disability Justice Audit. We would like to know about everyone’s experiences regarding accessibility, disability, and justice at WisCon. If you’ve ever attended WisCon, in any capacity, please fill out this survey by July 31. If you’re short on spoons or time, we ask that you focus on the questions marked with an asterisk (*). Your answers will help us determine the direction of future programming and accommodations at WisCon.

The Disability Justice Audit committee is not requesting any personally identifying information in this survey. We will anonymize info or quotes from survey results if presenting them in our audit conclusions.

The survey is here: https://forms.gle/9XmZbKxRH8DU53KBA

WisCon Gap Year Discord Launched

Over Memorial Day weekend, we launched our gap year Discord server a place for all WisCon loving folks to chat, organize and attend virtual events, and make friends. This server will be available all year long, not just for a weekend.

To join, fill out this form and we’ll send you an invite link: https://docs.google.com/forms/d/e/1FAIpQLScZJJPVPS6FcFGvCUvZn5CFtd9lOJ5o89IvYo-fVbgjpA3Dgg/viewform

If you have any questions, email discord@wiscon.sf3.org. We hope to see you soon! 

Announcing New Board Members!

SF3, the parent non-profit which oversees WisCon, is proud to welcome two new members to our Board of Directors: Margaret McGrath is joining us as President, and Gail Leinweber is joining us as an At-Large Board member! Huge thanks to our outgoing President, Jeannette Juricic, for all of her hard work with SF3 and WisCon over the past several years. Thanks also to Margaret, Gail, and everyone else who expressed interest in joining the Board for your support of WisCon and feminist speculative fiction!

No WisCon in 2024! Read on for more about our Gap Year.

There will be no WisCon in 2024 as we take a year to rest, plan, and make adjustments that we don’t usually have time for during the rush of putting on this life-giving feminist speculative fiction convention.

Online Connections

Last year’s Discord server is still active. We are in the process of creating a Gap Year Discord Community and if you’d like to know about it once it opens, or to keep up with things generally, sign up for our newsletter.


During our planning year there are several projects we’re working on to make WisCon better. Take a look at what we’re currently working on below. If there’s anything you’d like to help with while spending time with other cool WisCon people, send an email to personnel@sf3.org and they’ll get you connected! And don’t feel limited by what’s here, there’s all sorts of projects that could help WisCon. If you’ve got an idea send an email to the address above and we’ll see if we can connect you with other people who want to work on that project as well.

  • Anti-Racism Audit
    WisCon wants to better live up to its anti-racist values before, during, and after WisCon. If you’ve got ideas or opinions on how to do this, check out this group!
  • Platform Replacement
    Right now we use Basecamp to organize our work behind the scenes. For various reasons, we want to find a different service to organize our work on the convention. If you’ve got ideas or opinions about places we can store documents and communicate, check out this group!
  • Video Call Replacement
    Right now we use an assortment of video call services, none of which really work well for us. If you’ve got ideas or opinions on secure video call services with robust captioning services, check out this group!
  • Disability Audit
    WisCon wants to improve the experience for folks with disabilities before, during, and after WisCon. If you’ve got ideas or opinions on how to do this, check out this group!
  • Website Redesign
    WisCon’s website can be difficult to navigate and is in need of an update. If you’ve got ideas or opinions on how to make our website look nicer and easily provide the information that people need, we would love for you to participate!
  • Documentation
    Volunteering can be difficult if you don’t know what you’re supposed to be doing. For some volunteer roles, we don’t have clear documentation of what a person does in that role. For some roles we have it… somewhere? If you’ve got ideas or opinions on making sure we find and document everything we need for people to do their jobs with minimal effort, check out this group!

  • 2024 Discord Community
    We are planning to foster community online. If you would like to help with this, please let us know.
  • Email Provider & Mailing List Provider Replacement
    We’re looking to change how we email our members and send out our newsletter. If you’ve got ideas or opinions, check out this group!
  • WisCon Gap Year Planning Group
    All or none of the above appeal to you? This is the place to help out more generally, take part in decision making, and/or offer ideas for other working groups to make WisCon better than it is now.

We also have a Strategic Planning Committee that’s looking at the big picture for WisCon to re-center us on our principles and form some long term plans about how to live out those principles. They will be reaching out with surveys to the WisCon community about some of these plans and principles, and following up with focus groups. Be sure to sign up for our mailing list so you can take part in this important process!

To participate in any of these groups, please e-mail personnel@sf3.org to get started.

And regardless of whether you decide to volunteer, we hope you will stay connected via our mailing list, and that we see you in 2025!

SF3 President Needed

SF3 is the nonprofit organization that’s responsible for WisCon; it provides long-term governance and financial management not only for the annual convention, but also for other projects and initiatives.

Jeannette Juricic, after three years of fabulous service, has stepped down as SF3 President in order to focus on other commitments. The position of President must be filled for SF3 to continue to legally operate and keep its 503(c)(3) status. We are looking for an organized, reliable person to join the Board as President. While the title sounds a little intimidating, the duties of President mostly boil down to 1) Attend & participate in one-hour monthly Board and Annual SF3 meetings, 2) complete tasks that enable SF3 to do business that amount to 1-5 hours of work per month, 3) serve as backup to Treasurer at moments they are not available, and 4) manage and serve as titular owner of a few online resources. (The President must also be willing to tell the Board immediately if they are unable to complete their responsibilities and step down when a new President is appointed.) Training and mentoring available via our other three wonderful Officers, who will be excited to support you. No prior experience with WisCon is necessary (Jeannette’s first WisCon was after she joined us as President)!

If you’re at all interested or have additional questions about the position, the Board would love to hear from you! Please drop us a line at board@sf3.org, and we’ll find a time to chat.


Two months after the end of the con, and well outside COVID-19’s incubation period, we’d like to take this chance to give an overview of our COVID-19 safety measures, and their results. We hope sharing this information can be helpful not just to our own members as they continue to make decisions about their safety this year and up to the next WisCon, but also for any other organizations trying to hold safer events in the pandemic times.

COVID-19 Safety Measures for WisCon 2023

The following measures were taken by the hotel, the ConCom, and the COVID-19 Safety Team in particular:

  • The ConCom instituted a vaccination policy that required all members to be “up to date” on their vaccinations including bivalent boosters and show proof before picking up their badges. The registration desk (including vaccine checking) was in a separate room, rather than out in the open on the second floor, to help separate possibly un- or under-vaccinated members from the general con space. There were no exceptions to our vaccine policy, meaning that those who could not be vaccinated (including all children under 6 months) could not attend in-person. The policy also included contractors and vendors such as our childcare providers, our CART providers, and the dealers in the Dealers’ Room.

  • The ConCom instituted a masking policy requiring well-fitting masks in all public WisCon spaces, with unmasking only permissible for necessary sips or bites. As people have different intake needs for food, drink, or meds for their health, safety, and comfort, we trusted our members to follow the spirit of this policy. WisCon members overwhelmingly followed the masking policy in WisCon spaces. We also strongly recommended high-quality medical-grade masks rather than cloth masks or other types of masks, and provided such masks to in-person WisCon members for free at the Info Desk.

  • The ConCom, COVID-19 Safety Team, and Communications Committee encouraged members to test as much as they were able before, during, and after the con, and provided free rapid testing kits as well as information on where to obtain rapid testing kits and PCR tests locally.

  • The ConCom instituted a 600-member in-person attendance cap (down from our typical 800-900 attendance) to ensure that WisCon-exclusive spaces were less crowded. However, this came with tradeoffs in regards to other hotel guests, not subject to our policies, taking up more of the non-WisCon-exclusive spaces. Please see our final case report and takeaways (below) for additional related considerations. Our final in-person attendance was approximately 570 people.

  • The Parties policy was changed such that no food, and only non-alcoholic beverages, could be served. As Parties are WisCon spaces, masking was still required between sips.

  • Only individually pre-packaged food was served in the ConSuite, and meal vouchers were provided so members who needed them could obtain free hot meals at the hotel or a nearby restaurant following their own safety needs and comfort levels. We also had designated rooms for eating for those who were not staying in the hotel and could not eat in their rooms.

  • The Dessert Salon (which includes the Guest of Honor speeches) utilized a takeaway format, with no eating at the salon itself during the speeches and the desserts served afterwards in containers. Dessert Salon seating was a spread out auditorium format (rather than seating people close together at round tables for eating and talking). The Dessert Salon ticket system for both seating and serving discouraged crowding as people waited to be seated or served. The Dessert Salon was also streamed, and members attending in person who did not wish to be in the ballroom but still wanted a dessert could purchase a ticket, watch from wherever they felt comfortable, and come get a dessert after the event was over.

  • In all programming spaces, we requested and the hotel developed individual room layouts such that seating was reduced and spread out.

  • The 2023 Con Co-Chairs asked for and the SF3 Board approved a budget of $3,000 for the COVID-19 Safety Team; not all of these funds were used.

  • The COVID-19 Safety Team provided free N95 masks, hand sanitizer, and rapid testing kits to in-person WisCon members. They also provided clear masks to panelists. Here is a list of supplies purchased or donated for WisCon 2023.

  • The COVID-19 Safety Team used a reporting and contact tracing form for anyone who tested positive or was experiencing symptoms, including space for members to specify their locations and activities while at the con. The COVID-19 Safety Team sent emails with all shareable details of these reports daily at 6pm if new cases had been reported. The emails included information on local healthcare resources. The COVID-19 Safety Team had a member (with backup) dedicated specifically to the task of communication, compiling and disseminating this information.

  • The COVID-19 Safety Team recruited at-con volunteers to help provide quarantining or isolating WisCon members with supplies such as food, testing kits, and medication without those members having to leave their rooms.

  • The COVID-19 Safety Team distributed five LEVOIT Core 400S commercial air purifiers and fifteen Corsi-Rosenthal boxes stored from 2022 in key locations around WisCon spaces.

  • The COVID-19 Safety Team purchased materials for 24 additional Corsi–Rosenthal Boxes to supplement the commercial air purifiers and the hotel’s HVAC system. The day before WisCon started, ConCom members, COVID-19 Safety Team members, and at-con volunteers constructed the boxes in a Fan Club party.  Between the Corsi-Rosenthal Boxes and the commercial air purifiers, all public WisCon spaces had at least one kind of supplemental air purification, with larger spaces having multiple boxes and/or purifiers. After WisCon, most of the Corsi-Rosenthal boxes were given away to reduce storage.

  • We also distributed 18 CO2 monitors throughout WisCon spaces to help members decide if they felt comfortable in the space. The monitors were for informational purposes only.

  • And, of course, we did our best to offer hybrid programming, including streaming of Guest of Honor speeches and three fully online programming tracks, so that members, whether in-person or online, could participate from their homes or hotel rooms.

We truly believe that the hotel, the ConCom, our Online Con department, our COVID-19 Safety Team, our at-con volunteers, and our entire in-person membership did a great job working together to keep everyone safe! Thank you all so, so much!


Final COVID-19 Case Report and Takeaways

We stopped our case tracking two weeks out from the end of the convention. We had a total reported count of 3 cases, or 0.6% of our estimated 570 in-person attendance. Our COVID-19 reporting was sent directly to all members who had purchased an in-person membership, An anonymized record of all 3 reported cases, and location information, is available publicly at in this Google sheet.


We want to especially extend our thanks to those who tested positive very soon after arriving and took the necessary measures to take care of themselves and keep those around them safe, up to and including leaving the convention entirely. We know it must have been so gut-wrenching and disappointing. Thank you.


Ultimately, we wish there had been zero cases, that no one arrived sick, got sick during travel, or got sick while in Madison for WisCon. But we think everyone who works to put on WisCon — which specifically includes all our members, who are the people who make everything from panels to chairing possible — did an amazing job doing our best to keep each other safe.


Thank you all for your hard work, your communication, and your care.


Parties! Parties! Parties!

Have you checked out the 2023 Wiscon party lineup? We’ve got a little nighttime socialization planned, and the good news is, we’re all going masked. All parties this year have chosen to follow the “Covid-Safer” protocol, with the same masking expectations as our panels.

Take a look a look at what we’ve got planned, both in the hotel, and online.

7pm: Haiku Earring Party (online): The Haiku Earring party is back—this time with haiku written in chat, and earrings that come to you in the mail! It’s a fantastic way to participate in a beloved WisCon tradition from wherever you happen to be. This party will take place asynchronously in a dedicated discord channel and will run through Sunday.
7pm: Share Your Wiscon Story (Room 629): Let’s take some time to come together, share our favorite WisCon memories, and celebrate everything WisCon has meant to us since the very first one in 1977. We’ll have some prompts and plenty of paper so you can write or draw your own WisCon stories and add them to our Story Wall. You can also participate remotely via Discord.
7pm: Wiscon Vid Party (Wisconsin): The one, the only, Wiscon Vid Party returns! Watch fanvids on a big screen with a cheering crowd, or tune in for the livestream.
8pm: Comic Book Party (Room 629): Comics are for everyone, and everyone is welcome at this relaxing comics-themed party! Pick from our wide variety of comics to read, settle in with a coloring page, or just chat with others.
Signout Autographs with Martha Wells and Fan Mixer (Room 634): Unfortunately Ms. Wells won’t be available for the SignOut Autograph Party on Monday, so if you want her to sign something, this is your chance! Ms. Wells will sign from 8:00-9:00, after which we will have a casual icebreaker mixer game, a Sanctuary Moon costume contest (yes, this means you can create your own space lawyer and dress up as them), and other fun activities.

WisCon Moderator Training 5/14

Are you a WisCon moderator? Or have you considered becoming a moderator at WisCon or another convention in the future? This training is for you!

Our second and last pre-con WisCon Moderator training will take place via Zoom on May 14th (4pm CT).

We encourage all WisCon panel moderators or potential moderators to join Gretchen Jones for a discussion of tips, tricks, moderator best practices, and how to make your WisCon panel the best it can be.

Current moderators check your email for a zoom link, others can email panels@wiscon.net for a link, or newsletter subscribers can refer to the email from 5/5 with the subject line “WisCon Moderator Trainings 5/6 & 5/14 – All welcome!”

Sign up for Special Session Workshops!

We still have openings to attend all of our special session workshops. To sign up for a special session, please send an email to workshop@wiscon.net.
Artist Trading Cards, Friday, 4:00 p.m. 
Art in your Pocket: Artist Trading Cards, possibly with popups or mini books. Free to make and take to keep, gift, or trade with friends.
Theatre Camp, Sat. 10:00 a.m.
Miss acting, or just want to try it out in a stress-free setting? In this low-commitment WisCon experiment, we’ll be getting together to read a selection of short SF/F plays, monologues and scenes, and even put them on their feet if we’re feeling bold! Get guidance from experienced directors and playwrights as you explore speculative theatre both classic and contemporary. No materials, experience or prep required!
There will be an (optional) performance opportunity at a Sunday Workshops Open Mic at 4pm (sign-up for the open mic will be during WisCon weekend).
Writing Through Hard Times, Sat. 1:00 p.m.
“Writing Through Hard Times: How to Keep Up Your Routine During Grief, Depression, and Disability” details planning techniques and strategies for writing through the hardest times. Be prepared to share tips and resources.

Artist Roundtable, Sun. 10:00 a.m.

Come join for a session of talking, advice, experience, and ideating on how to be an artist or maker in today’s world. How do you get your foot in the door? Where do you show or sell your creations and wares? How do you deal with cat hair getting on the art during shedding season? How do you find someone to give you a helpful critique, or a helping hand for an art fair, or help hanging your art? Whether you have experience to share, or are here to ask questions or listen to advice, this is a share-all round table for all the various kinds of arts and crafts that creatives hone. So come join us for a discussion on the million different ways to get out there with your creations in this world!
The Workshops Open Mic, Sun. 4:00 p.m.
Join us for an open mic/ sharing session to celebrate this year’s workshops. From (visual art) to (poetry/stories) to scenes from speculative plays, this is your chance to see new art of all genres created right here at Wiscon! Slots are five minutes (those presenting plays or scenes from the acting workshop may go up to ten). The open mic is open to all on a space-available basis, but we will be prioritizing pieces that originated at convention workshops. (Sign-up for the open mic will be during WisCon weekend.)
Volunteer with Workshops!
We also have volunteer shifts open for Writing Space Facilitators in-person and on Discord. You can sign up through the Volunteering link that shows up at the top of the WisCon website when you’re signed in to your WisCon account.

POC Outreach Committee Registration and Travel Grants

If you are a person of color who is attending or considering attending WisCon 2023 the POC Outreach Committee would like to help. The committee has 75 registration slots open that we want to offer to any person of color who is attending the con, even if you’ve already bought your ticket. Tickets will be given out on a first come first served basis.

We’re also able to give out $250 travel grants to 20 people to help with travel expenses. These will not be issued first come first serve, but instead will be raffled off to people who have filled out the survey.

We encourage all people of color who plan to go to WisCon 2023 to fill out this survey by May 17th in order to be considered for the registration and/or raffle.

Can’t wait to see you all there, whether physically or digitally!