Welcome to Anne McCaffrey’s Weyrfest at Dragon*Con

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In 1967, a relatively unknown author named Anne McCaffrey asked herself a simple question:

“What if dragons were the good guys?”

The answer launched a bestselling career that has spanned over four decades, breaking records, garnering dozens of accolades, and stoking the imaginations of countless readers young and old. A trailblazer for women in sci-fi/fantasy – and the first to win the Hugo award for fiction – Anne McCaffrey’s tales of adventure, suspense, romance, and tragedy are among the most timeless in the genre.

As a track, Anne McCaffrey’s Worlds – or Weyrfest – celebrates the stories, the fandom, and the Dragonlady herself, who has graciously been a guest in past years. Though primarily focused on her seminal series The Dragonriders of Pern – where humans bond with telepathic dragons to save their world from the mindless ravages of a spaceborne threat – discussions cover everything from McCaffrey’s short fiction to the Talent, Freedom, Crystal Singer, Petaybee, and Acorna series.

And since the McCaffrey legacy is in no small part owed to, and perpetuated by, many wonderful coauthors, Weyrfest is proud to feature regular readings, workshops, and discussions with the architects who have helped build her worlds. Todd McCaffrey (Dragonholder, Dragon’s Kin, Dragonsblood, Dragon’s Fire) and Jody Lynn Nye (The Dragonlover’s Guide to Pern, Doona, Dinosaur Planet, MythAdventures – with Robert Asprin) are practically fixtures at the track. Former and recurring guests have included Elizabeth Moon, Elizabeth Ann Scarborough, Bill Fawcett, S.M. Stirling, Toni Weisskopf, Katherine Kurtz, Scott MacMillan, Chelsea Quin Yarbro, Janny Wurts, and Don Maitz. And since song plays a pivotal role in many of Anne’s stories, Weyrfest has featured the musical stylings of Mike Freeman and Tania Opland (“The Masterharper of Pern,” “Sunset’s Gold”) and Emerald Rose.

Weyrfest is nothing without its attendees, and audience participation is central to many of its panels. Track favorites include the annual costume contest – emceed by Jody Lynn Nye – trivia contest, singalongs, and, new in 2009, an ongoing firelizard hatching. Weyrfest is proud to march in the Dragon*Con parade; guests and fans alike are encouraged to come along in the trappings of their favorite McCaffrey world. And night owls will get a kick out of an unofficial Weyrfest fan tradition: late-night games of “Are You a Werewolf?” hosted by Todd McCaffrey (who is as likely as not to show up in his kilt of choice).

From the tastiest klah recipes to getting started in fandom; the mechanics of between to the power of Prime Talent; dragon birth to dragon sex (that’s right, dragon sex), Anne McCaffrey’s Worlds is the place to be for anyone who’s ever dreamed of traveling the stars.