It was founded in 1975 by Grant Stone, with the first convention held in 1976, and has been run annually since. It is generally run by different committees of volunteers each year, and committees bid for the right to run the convention two years in advance.
In recent years it has been run as a project of the Western Australian Science Fiction Foundation (WASFF), with that year's committee reporting to the WASFF board. The convention is frequently run at Easter, but has been run at other times, though typically in the first half of the year, and is generally held in a hotel. It generally attracts 250–300 attendees. It will normally have guests attending including at least one international author, and international guests have included Robert Silverberg, Bob Shaw, Anne McAffrey, Terry Pratchett, Neil Gaiman, Brandon Sanderson, Charles Stross, and David Zindell. Australian guests have included John Birmingham, Marianne de Pierres, Kim Wilkins and Kate Forsyth.
SwanCon first hosted the Australian National Science Fiction Convention in 1980, and has done so relatively regularly since. In 2011, SwanCon hosted the 50th Australian National Science Fiction Convention, including guests Ellen Datlow, Justina Robson and Sean Williams.
Tin Duck Awards
The Tin Duck Awards are the Western Australian science fiction achievement awards. They are given out annually at SwanCon and voted on by members of the convention.
They were first presented in 1980 at SwanCon 5. The Tin Duck Award design was originated by Rob McGough.
- "Swancon 2013" (2013) Weekend Notes. Retrieved 23 April 2013.
- Lay, Duncan. (31 March 2013) "Read Them or Weep". The Sunday Times, Perth, Australia. p68.
- Australian National Science Fiction Convention (1986 : Perth, W.A.); Strong, Caroline; Stone, Grant (1986), Swancon XI : the 1986 Australian National Science Fiction Convention, Miss Maud's Functon Centre, Perth, Easter, 1986, The Convention?, retrieved 18 May 2018
- "Fans of science fiction and fantasy are set to descend upon the Hyatt Hotel in Perth this week for the 50th anniversary of a national convention" (19 April 2011). Guardian Express, Perth, Australia. p3.
- Swancon 2001:Souvenir book, Western Australian Science Fiction Foundation, 2001, ISBN 978-0-646-41104-0
- "Thrilled to be included" (4 April 2002). The Courier Mail, Brisbane, Australia. p17.
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- Strong, Caroline. 'SwanCon 7 Program Book' , p. 10. Transcription by Anna Hepworth, Australian SF History 2012 Retrieved April 30, 2013