Novacon 50

Novacon 18 GoH: Garry  Kilworth

Garry Kilworth

I was GoH at Novacon 18 in 1988. (A lot of 8's there - the Chinese lucky number). I believe it was Rog Peyton who recommended me to the con committee, a lovely man and a great fan and bookseller. It was a terrific experience, since I had just left my day job to become a full-time writer (though the word 'full' is used reservedly).

The novel I chose to centre my talk around was my first sf novel 'In Solitary', a title that resonates with our current global situation, though I hasten to add it was not prophetic. The theme centres around a lone human living on an Earth conquered by bird-like aliens. His loyalties are confused, since he has more than a touch of Stockholm Syndrome. I remember that I wrote that my aliens survived on aerobic bacteria.

My 12 year old son read it and said, 'So why have they got big bird beaks?' (Oh, Darwin, why didn't I read your Origin of Species earlier?). It was a very short novel, just over a novella, and one critic (who shall remain nameless) accused me of having 'verbal anorexia'.

Novacons have been part of my life since 1976: full of interest, full of fun, full of great camaraderie. Long may they survive.