Time is moving forward, much like a stone rolling downhill, gaining speed as it proceeds. Similarly, Intersection, the 1995 World Science Fiction Convention, is rapidly approaching. Indeed, only about 5 weeks remain before the convention opens to the public - and the Committee is finalizing everything, from events and programme items to staff and gopher lists.
And those staff lists are what concern us right now.
Working at a UK Worldcon will be different in a number of ways from working at a Worldcon elsewhere - due to the differences of fannish custom and practice over here. One of the major differences is the Shift Schedule system - it is almost unheard of for UK cons not to run a shift schedule for all jobs, (The schedule is drawn up pre-con according to people's stated preferences for hours/times of work and times they want off) while US fannish custom is for most volunteers to turn up on the day and offer to pitch in then, as it suits them once they have seen what is happening.
Most Areas run on shifts of 3 hours each, and you get assigned to one shift per day. (More if you prefer, but we dislike having anyone work more than 3 shifts per day.) If you want to work in a particular Area, you really need to be telling us that now. That especially applies if you are expecting to do some senior job at con (eg shift supervisor or deputy) as all these jobs will be assigned prior to the con. We would like to have Americans on board at senior levels (and indeed we have a number already) but if we don't know about you pre-con, those jobs won't be open to you then.
This is exactly the time to be telling us what you want to do, as all Area Heads here are now busy drawing up their shift schedule lists. You should also tell us if you prefer to work am/pm/late night, and if there are particular days you want off for whatever reason. It would also be helpful if you could tell us what sort of previous experience you have had... and anything else you think we ought to know.
Of course we will happily take all gophers who turn up just wanting to do general gophering - they should go to the Gopher Hole in the normal way, and introduce themselves there.
Another difference in the way that British Conventions traditionally operate is that we do not run a Consuite, Committee Den or Staff Lounge, so the usual freebie munchies and beverages will not be around. However, as a thank-you for helping with Intersection, you will be given a Gopher Refreshment ticket for working that time (exchangeable for a soft drink from the Gopher Hole, or for a plain baked potato at the catering stand beside the Gopher Hole). This applies to everyone however high or low on the scale of things. Thus, the ordinary gopher will get exactly the same ticket as the Chairman, Board, Committee, and Staff. [Actually, the chairs have been told that since the higher up you are the less you ought to benefit, they must run 3 Worldcons before they can qualify for a baked potato!! ;) ]