Worldcon - Guests of Honor

Guests of Honor

See also: Category:Worldcon Guests of Honor

Each Worldcon committee selects a number of guests of honor (often just "GoH" in publications). for the convention. Typically there is an Author (or "Writer" or just "Pro") and a Fan guest of honor. Many conventions also have an Artist, Editor, and Science guests, and most have a Toastmaster for major events such as the opening and closing ceremonies and the Hugo award ceremony. A few conventions have had two or even three author guests.

While other conventions may select guests on the basis of popularity, Worldcons select guests of honor as an acknowledgement of significant lifetime contribution to the field; while these are often well-known figures, some committees choose lesser-known figures precisely because the committee feels the guest's accomplishments deserve more recognition from the community. Selection is treated by authors, fans, and others as a lifetime achievement award. As such, the tradition is to award it only to those who have been making significant contributions for at least twenty years, 25-30 for authors. Guests of honor generally receive travel expenses, membership, and a small per diem from the convention.

In order to announce guests immediately after site selection, Worldcon bid committees select one or more guests before the site selection vote. Fans consider it inappropriate for bids to compete on the basis of their chosen guests (so as to avoid having someone chosen by a losing bid feeling that fandom had voted against them personally), so bids do not reveal who their guests are until after the vote, and losing bids generally never reveal who they invited. This is usually treated with the same discretion as the Hugo awards, where only two or three people might know who the guests will be.

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Anatomy of A Typical Science Fiction Convention - Guests of Honor
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