Background

The Trans-Atlantic Fan Fund, often known as TAFF, was created in 1953 for the purpose of collecting money to bring well-known science fiction fans familiar to other fans on both sides of the ocean, across the Atlantic. A very early crowd-funding effort, in other words. Since that time TAFF has regularly brought North American science fiction fans to European science fiction conventions and European SF fans to North American conventions. The candidates are voted on by all SF fans who are interested in TAFF, all over the world, and each vote is accompanied by a monetary donation. See Dave Langford’s TAFF site for more information about TAFF.

TAFF logo westbound

After being persuaded by several friends*, I decided to enter the 2018 race, which is from Europe to the World Science Fiction Convention in San Jose, California, in August. I had two formidable competitors, Fia Karlsson and Helena McCallum (and let me say here and now that getting acquainted with Helena was one of the first really good things about this race. Fia I knew from before, of course). It was a tight race, but I ended up winning. So on July 25th I will be flying out from Arlanda Airport to Toronto, Canada, by way of Reykjavík, to begin a month-long tour of North America that, in addition to Toronto and San Jose, will take me to Minnesota, Texas, and Washington State, staying with and meeting fans every step of the trip.

Afterwards, I have promised to write up a report of it all, an old tradition for TAFF delegates. And here on this blog I will note down tidbits of my preparations, thoughts about the trip, and experiences during the trip.

*You know who you are, Wolf, Fia, Ulrika & Claire!

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