Monday, June 11, 2012

Winking Out

Today, I finished two preparations for the Winkie Convention next month.

I'll be quite active at the convention this year. Friday night, I'm giving a presentation about Ruth Plumly Thompson, the second Royal Historian of Oz.

In preparing for this one, I had to research her life and found out quite a bit about her, so my presentation wound up focusing on her life a bit. But I also touch on her take on Oz, and there'll be plenty of pictures in the slideshow.

I looked into getting footage of Thompson for the presentation from her Christmas 1963 television interview. It aired on WCAU, which was CBS in Philadelphia at the time, so I looked up Philadelphia's CBS, contacted them, and discovered their archives were at Temple University.

After a few months, Temple U couldn't find it, and then we discovered why: WCAU is now NBC, and the archives would be with NBC or whoever they may have turned them over to. I attempted to contact them, but they never responded. Well, it was worth a shot. (Darn NBC...)

On Saturday, I have a costume for the costume contest. I was a lot of fun to figure out how to pull it off. I'm not saying who or what I'm dressing up as, but I think it's going to be fun.

After the costume contest (should things go the way they have the past two years), I'm presenting the standard quiz. I found a different way to do it, which in itself is a tribute to Thompson. Anyone taking it should read Sky Island and be sure they know their Baum Oz books.

Finally, Sunday morning, there'll be a panel on Oz blogs. I'll be on the panel, as will Eric Gjovaag, and John Bell will be hosting it. I've heard they want to get some other bloggers in, but we'll see.

Not that I'm doing everything, of course! We'll be hearing from Susan Morse (Dorothy's singing voice in the 1964 Return to Oz), Caren Marsh-Doll (Judy Garland's stand-in on the MGM adaptation of The Wizard of Oz), and Eric Shanower is having some sort of presentation.

Plus, we'll have the Auction, the Dealer's Tables, the Swap Meet Table, and a new game show called "It's The Baum!" And, of course, you get to hang out with some great people!

And there's the Winkie Research Table, which, if you want to submit art, fiction, or scholarly pieces for, better get on it! You could win some cold hard cash. (Even if you're not there.)

You can get more information about how to get to Winkies here.

So, with all that, it's not much of a surprise I'm not going to be taking copies of Outsiders from Oz to sell. Not only do I want to have some fun, but I'm not sure I could afford enough copies. However, anyone attending can order a copy through me, get a discount ($.62 off the paperback, $5.88 off the hardcover, this is cutting out Lulu's markup), and a free limited color plate you can frame or tip in to your copy. (Anyone attending who owns a copy gets a color plate for free, and remaining stock will be mailed upon request on a first-come, first-serve basis.) Finally, I'll give it to you in person and sign it.

If you want to take advantage of that deal, e-mail me at, but I'll need payment for your copy very soon.

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