Cosplay and Con Reports | Forums | Writings | Graphical Creations | Image Gallery | About Bob | Web Design | Martial Arts | Games | Links

Custom Search
How to Organize a Convention in 10 easy steps:
By Bob Hubbard

1: Find a place to hold it. This can be a hotel, motel, convention center, local Moose hall, etc.

2: Figure out a convenient date. Try to avoid having it too close to other cons in your area. Avoiding major holidays may be a good idea especially if they are the big ones like Christmas.

3: Get some guests. This is both easy and hard. Getting the Big Name Guest (BNG) can be both ulcer inducing as well as pricey. (Shatner has been rumored to want 6 figures for an appearance, and I aint talking about those Kenner Star Wars figures either). When starting out, its often a good idea to hit the B or even the C levels. They are often more reasonable and flexible. Worst case, try some voice actors…unless you’re doing an anime con, in which case they will be at a premium,.

4: Advertise. This is a key step, often missed by cons. They bill themselves as the biggest, largest, grandest, etc., yet do little more than slide some flyers under dorm room doors or rely on the local art paper. Do print the flyers, and get them out to every shop that caters to your target market. Use the free advertising available through the national publications like StarLog. Advertising is the key to a successful con.

5: Take pre registrations. Offer a discount as an incentive. The more cash you can get early on, the more you can get the word out, maybe even getting that extra room or guest to really make things rock.

6: Accept qualified volunteers. These folks are the life blood of any con. While sometimes depicted as folks with no lifes, living in dark basements hoping to kiss a member of the opposite gender before retirement age, the majority are hard working, motivated and excited folks who really give a damn. Get them involved, toss in some guidance and you’ll have the workings of a great con.

7: Be organized. Poor organization, communications, follow up all can cause problems. Be clear in your communications. Proof reading is also good. If you can’t say it in a single paragraph, it might be too complex, so simplify.

8: Cover your ass legally. Spending some time now can save you a buttload of problems later. Too often fans think it would be a good idea, only to get raked when something goes majorly wrong.

9: Work with the location on laying out events and such. A good location will have an experienced staff that will understand their facilities, traffic flow, etc. Properly preparing the facilities can greatly enhance the event for all involved.

10: Arrive early to set up and plan on being there late. There is a reason why many con organizers look like Gollum after a 3 month journey thru the wilderness with a bunch a scraggly hobbits.

Putting on a successful con can be a rewarding experience. It can also be a nightmare. These tips aren’t everything you need to know, but they will get you started. If you need more help, contact your local convention bureau,

Here are some informative links:



Bob Hubbard also known on various on-line forums as "Silent" Bob, and just "Kaith", is a long time sci-fi fan. Currently head of the I.K.V. Devisior, an independant science fiction, anime and fantasy fan club, he has held positions with numerous other groups. He has organized activities at Media Play and Barnes & Nobel, worked con security, participated in club challenges for charities, and participated in masquerades, art shows and model shows at several Toronto conventions.
You can reach Bob at his website,


This Site Copyright ©2005-2009 Bob Hubbard - All Rights Reserved.
All Rights Reserved. No Part of this web site may be reproduced whole or in part without the expressed written permission of the copyright holder

Design by Bob Hubbard | Hosting by SilverStar WebDesigns Inc.