The Trans-Atlantic Fan Fund (TAFF) was created in 1953 for the purpose of providing funds to bring well-known and popular science fiction fans familiar to those on both sides of the ocean across the Atlantic.
Since that time TAFF has regularly brought North American fans to European conventions and European fans to North American conventions. TAFF exists solely through the support of fandom. The candidates are voted on by interested fans all over the world, and each vote is accompanied by a donation. In fact everyone who has been an active part of science-fiction fandom for at least two years can stand as a candidate. (In case you are in doubt, ask us! Our e-mails are at the end of this text.) Each candidate has to get three nominators on their side of the Atlantic and two on the other, each of whom has personally contacted the administrators with their nomination. He/she has to post a bond of £15 (or a rough equivalent in Euros) and provided a platform of up to 101 words.
Now it’s time once again for the mighty TAFF machine to swing into action and find at least two candidates to slug it out in the fannish arena for their chance to represent fellow fans on the far side off the Atlantic.
This time, however, we have a bit of a twist for you. We will be switching the direction of the race to coincide with the latest slew of actual and potential Worldcons. This has been a difficult decision that has involved much midnight oil burning and several strong exchanges of views. We dearly love having the opportunity to send delegates to Eastercon and there was also a splendid offer of providing a place for a TAFF delegate at the next Eurocon at Barcelona. All of these options were weighed in the balance and absolutely none of them were found wanting. We were in the enviable position of having a large number of positives from which to choose. We eventually decided that the advantage that Worldcon gives in providing access to the largest number of fans slightly tipped the decision in their favour. Because of this we have switched the direction of the races so that they coincide with Kansas City in 2016 and Helsinki in 2017.
The next race will be from East (Europe) to West (North America). The next candidate will be from Europe and will hopefully attend MidAmericon II in Kansas City in August 2016. The nomination period is open now and will end on midnight (GMT), on the 11th of December. The chairs of the next two Worldcons have agreed to provide accommodation and membership for their conventions and we humbly thank them for doing so. This now means that we are asking you, the fannish community, to find some really great TAFF candidates for the next race.
Talk to us (Jim, Curt and myself) about potential candidates (or if you want to stand yourself!) and we’ll help you organize nominators and TAFF platforms or answer any questions about the TAFF.
Jim Mowatt: jim[at]umor.co.uk
Curd Phillips: absarka_prime[at]comcast.net
Nina Horvath: nina[at]ninahorvath.at