Saturday, June 17, 2017

Eternal Romance, OSFS and Canada all celebrate anniversaries in 2017

Eternal Romance #1
2017 marks a number of anniversaries, including the 20th anniversary of my supernatural comic book Eternal Romance, the 40th anniversary of the Ottawa Science Fiction Society (OSFS), and the 150th anniversary of Canada's Confederation.

My roots are in Canada, comics and fandom, so there are lots of reasons to celebrate.

Forty years along, OSFS is not the same organization as when I first became involved years ago, and there's a reason for that.

In the early days of OSFS, fen (plural for fan) came together because there really wasn't anywhere else to go. We were seeking like-minded people who loved to read science fiction, fantasy and comic books. We were delirious with joy when we found others who adored Star Trek, Star Wars, Dr. Who and Hitchhikers Guide to the Galaxy, and even wanted to dress up like characters from those stories.

We didn't have a con to go to and show off our costumes or shop for geeky things, so we created one: Maplecon.

Janet as General Leia at Ottawa Comiccon 2017
We did those things before they were cool. Now there's a comic-con every weekend, and a new Star Wars movie every year. I can walk into a comic book shop and buy a Green Lantern ring or a Wonder Woman tiara or a Spider-Man hoodie that makes a pretty good makeshift costume if I want to -- something that I could only dream of in my youth.

I remember OSFS members calling people who didn't share our passions "mundanes." The mundanes didn't get us. J.K. Rowling called these types of people "muggles" -- the ones who didn't understand or who didn't embrace the magic.

The mainstream has embraced the magic.

OSFS has had an impact. We have been the trailblazers. OSFS is not the same organization it once was, but we should recognize and celebrate what it accomplished.

OSFS gave us a voice, an outlet for our passions, and for many, lifelong friendships.

Happy 20th anniversary Eternal Romance, happy 40th anniversary OSFS, and happy 150th anniversary of Confederation Canada!