Guests of Honor


Sheree Renée Thomas

Sheree Renée Thomas is a Memphis-based writer, poet, and editor whose “black pot mojo” creative work explores ordinary people facing extraordinary circumstances. She is the author of Sleeping Under the Tree of Life (Aqueduct Press and of Shotgun Lullabies (2011). Thomas’s Dark Matter: A Century of Speculative from the African Diaspora won the 2001 World Fantasy Award. Dark Matter: Reading the Bones won the 2005 World Fantasy Award. In 2017 Thomas was honored with the L. A. Banks Award for Outstanding Contribution to Speculative Fiction.

Her work appears in anthologies and literary journals, including Apex Magazine, FIYAH, Strange Horizons, Lightspeed, and many more. She is the founder of Black Pot Mojo Arts and BSAM Memphis (Black Speculative Arts Movement), a festival held in the historic South Main Arts District that celebrates Afrofuturism art, music, artivism, and scholarship. Follow her @blackpotmojo on Twitter and on Instagram and Facebook @shereereneethomas


Diana M. Pho

Diana M. Pho is a Hugo Award-nominated editor at Tor Books and Tor.com Publishing, though she’s worked in the publishing industry under various hats for over a decade. She’s also an academic scholar, activist, performer, and general rabble-rouser elsewhere. Her talented list includes Robyn Bennis, Alex Bledsoe, P. Djeli Clark, Marie Miranda Cruz, Lara Elena Donnelly, Thoraiya Dyer, A. J. Hartley, Margaret Killjoy, Kari Maaren, and Prentis Rollins; she also works with the best-selling The Wheel of Time® series and George R. R. Martin’s Wild Cards universe. Books she has edited have gone on to win the Thriller Award (Hartley’s Steeplejack, for Best YA), and the Ditmar Award (Dyer’s Crossroads of Canopy, for Best Novel) and to become finalists for the Nebula Award, Lambda Literary Award, Shirley Jackson Award, and Andre Norton Award for Young Adult.

In the steampunk community, she is best-known for running Beyond Victoriana, an award-winning, US-based blog on multicultural steampunk. She has published numerous articles on science fiction and its community. She has been interviewed for many media outlets about fandom, including CBS’s Inside Edition, MSN.com, BBC America, the Travel Channel, HGTV, and the Science Channel.


Bill Campbell

Bill Campbell is the author of Sunshine Patriots, My Booty Novel, Pop Culture: Politics, Puns, “Poohbutt” from a Liberal Stay-at-Home Dad, Koontown Killing Kaper, and the spaceploitation comic, Baaaad Muthaz, with David Brame and Damian Duffy. Along with Edward Austin Hall, he co-edited the groundbreaking anthology Mothership: Tales from Afrofuturism and Beyond. He also co-edited the Glyph Award-winning comics anthology APB: Artists against Police Brutality with Jason Rodriguez and John Jennings, the Locus Award-nominated anthology Stories for Chip: A Tribute to Samuel R. Delany with Nisi Shawl, and Future Fiction: New Dimensions in International Science Fiction and Fantasy with Italian publisher Francesco Verso. Campbell founded Rosarium Publishing in 2013.


Jennifer Udden

Jennifer Udden was born in Houston, TX, and spent many of her formative years hiding books under tables while she was meant to be paying attention to something else. She has a BA from Mount Holyoke College, and graduated in 2008 with a major in Politics, a minor in Chinese, and honors thesis work on anxiety in British detective fiction of the early 20th century. She has worked in fundraising for an off-Broadway theater company and joined the publishing industry in 2010 at the Donald Maass Literary Agency.

She is the co-host of the podcast Shipping & Handling (shippingandhandlingpodcast.com) with Bridget Smith of Dunham Literary, Inc. To query Jen, follow the directions on the submission guidelines page. She blogs at www.jenniferudden.com and jenniferudden.wordpress.com


Troy L. Wiggins

Troy L. Wiggins is a writer and editor from Memphis, Tennessee. His short fiction has appeared in the Griots: Sisters of the Spear, Long Hidden: Speculative Fiction From the Margins of History, and Memphis Noir anthologies, and has appeared or is forthcoming in Expanded Horizons, Fireside, Uncanny and Beneath Ceaseless Skies.

His essays and criticism have appeared in the Memphis Flyer, Literary Orphans Magazine, People of Colo(u)r Destroy Science Fiction, Strange Horizons, PEN America, and on Tor.com. Troy is Co-Editor of Fiyah Magazine of Black Speculative Fiction, and he blogs frequently about writing, nerd culture, and race at afrofantasy.net. Troy lives in Memphis with his wife, Kimberly, and their two dogs. Follow him on Twitter at @TroyLWiggins.


Jason Sizemore

Jason Sizemore is a Hugo and Stoker Award-nominated editor, publisher, and writer from Lexington, KY. He owns and operates the genre small press Apex Publications and the highly regarded Apex Magazine. A collection of his short fiction, Irredeemable, is available from Seventh Star Press. For more information visit jason-sizemore.com.



More special guests are in the works, so check back here for more announcements.