Roll for FUN! (and Drama and Terror)

We’re running several game sessions for you this year, all taking place on our Discord server. Sign-ups are required – links were sent to registered members a couple of days ago, and we’ll be sending them out again soon. Or you can find the sign-up on our Discord server once it’s open.

  • The Conrunners and the Chairperson’s Pints – Saturday morning, 10am (3 hours)
    Run by Gaelcon.
    A game for up to six hassled con runners (13+).
    Disaster has struck the Con, several disasters really, and you as the con committee are the ones to fix it. Your Con Chair has had to step in and run a event, and without their guiding hand the event is starting to break down. 
  • Splattermania – Saturday afternoon, 2pm (2 hours)
    Brought to you by Fingal Libraries.
    Splattermania is an all-ages, sensory friendly DnD royal rumble. Experienced players only, 13+. No death saves, no monsters, and no end of level bad guy. Twenty level 1 characters enter the ring one at a time and battle to the death separately or in teams. Last player standing wins. 
  • SALVAGE – Sunday afternoon, 2pm (3 hours)
    Run by Gaelcon.
    A cinematic horror game using the Alien RPG System, for four to five players (16+). 
    The focus is on telling a fun and interesting story in the style of the Alien films, so it’s likely to be highly lethal. CW for horror, general dread, body-horror and gory violence. 

Find out more!

Roleplaying Octo
Octo is ready to roll…

The Octocon 2021 Programme is Live

Our schedule is officially live, and packed with panels, interviews, talks, workshops, fan chats, readings, games and guest chats (aka kaffeeklatsches).

View the programme

How to watch and attend:

You need to register for Octocon (for free!) and accept our code of conduct if you want to access our Discord server and any of the Zoom meetings for programme items, or join our social spaces.

Registered members will receive a link to our Discord by email. An email will also be sent with sign-up links for workshops, games and guest chats.

  • Panels and interviews (50 minutes): Streamed live to Twitch Channel One and Channel Two – no Octocon registration required.
    If you want to submit questions during the panel or interview, you will need a Twitch account.
  • Workshops (50 or 80 minutes): Live on Zoom. Sign-up required. Check your email or Discord channel #schedule for details of how to sign up.
    Find out more.
  • Talks (50 minutes): Live on Zoom. Check Discord channel #schedule for the Zoom link.
  • Fan chats (50 minutes): Live on Zoom. Check Discord channel #schedule for the Zoom link.
  • Guest chats (50 minutes): Live on Zoom. Sign-up required. Check your email or Discord channel #schedule for details of how to sign up.
  • Readings (25 minutes): Live on Zoom. Check Discord channel #schedule for the Zoom link.
  • Games (2-3 hours): Live on our Discord server. Sign-up required. Check your email or Discord channel #schedule for details of how to sign up.
    Find out more.
Octo is getting ready to enjoy Octocon on all their devices

Found Family Fortunes is back!

Following the success and hilarity of our Octocon Presents: Found Family Fortunes back in June, we’re running another episode at Octocon!

Join us on our Twitch channel on Friday 1st October at 10pm IST (UTC+1) to watch the Titancon family go up against the Octocon family in a battle of the conventions, hosted by James Brophy!

You still have a couple of days left to help us with our survey, too… Don’t delay!

Found Family Fortunes logo

Who’s coming to Octocon? (part 3)

Octocon loves to celebrate our home-grown Irish creators, and we have a very fantastic bunch to show off, many of them regular Octocon panellists and guests.

Ruth Frances Long / Jessica Thorne

Ruth Frances Long / Jessica Thorne

Ruth Frances Long writes young adult fantasy, often about scary fairies. She works in a specialized library of rare & occasionally crazy books.

In 2015 she won the European Science Fiction Society Spirit of Dedication Award for Best Author of Children’s Science Fiction and Fantasy for A Crack in Everything.

As Jessica Thorne she writes Fantasy, Space Opera and other fantastic tales, including The Lost Girls of Foxfield Hall, The Queen’s Wing, Mageborn and Nightborn. The Stone’s Heart was nominated for the Romantic Novelists’ Association Romantic Fantasy novel of the year in 2020. Her latest novel, The Bookbinder’s Daughter will be available on the 20th September from Bookouture.

Web: | Twitter: @RFLong and @JessThorneBooks | Facebook: R. F. Long and Jessica Thorne Author | Instagram: @RuthFrancesLong and @JessThorneBooks

Peadar Ó Guilín

Peadar Ó Guilín

Irish writer Peadar Ó Guilín is the author of the YA novel, The Call, inspired by the beautiful northwest of Ireland where he grew up. The Invasion, a sequel to The Call and the end of the duology, was published in March 2018 and was a finallist for the 2019 Lodestar Award for Best Young Adult Book, awarded at Dublin 2019, an Irish Worldcon.
In September 2007, Peadar published his first novel, The Inferior, which the Times Educational Supplement called ‘a stark, dark tale, written with great energy and confidence and some arresting reflections on human nature.’ Foreign editors liked it too, and over the coming year it is to be translated into eight languages, including Japanese and Korean.
His fantasy and SF short stories have appeared in numerous venues, including Black Gate magazine and an anthology celebrating the best of the iconic Weird Tales.

Twitter: @TheCallYA

Oisín McGann

Oisín McGann was born in Dublin and spent his childhood there and in Drogheda, County Louth. He studied at Ballyfermot Senior College and Dun Laoghaire School of Art and Design, and went on to work in illustration, design and film animation, later moving to London to work as an art director and copy writer in advertising.
He has since become one of Ireland’s most prolific and best-known writer-illustrators, and has produced dozens of books for all levels of reader, including twelve novels. He is the author of the Mad Grandad books, Headbomz: Wreckin’ Your Head (in association with the ISPCC), and novels such as Race the Atlantic Wind, The Gods and Their Machines and The Wildenstern Saga. His latest books are We Want Our Park Back, a picture book for Green-Schools, and A Short, Hopeful Guide to Climate Change, a non-fiction book in association with Friends of the Earth, released in May 2021. He is the illustrator of Jason Byrne’s Onion O’Brien series, the latest of which is The Secret Scientist.
He is a winner of the European Science Fiction Society Award, CBI’s Children’s Choice Award and has been shortlisted for numerous other awards, including the Waterstones Childrens’ Book Prize in the UK, le Grand Prix de l’Imaginaire in France and Locus Magazine’s Best First Novel Award in the US. He is married with three children, two dogs and a cat, and lives somewhere in the Irish countryside, where he won’t be heard shouting at his computer.

Twitter: @OisinMcGann | Instagram: @oisinmcgann

Jack Fennell

Jack Fennell is a writer, anthologist and editor from Limerick. He has published academic studies on Irish science fiction and horror fiction, and he is the editor of the science fiction anthology A Brilliant Void (2018) and the fantasy anthology It Rose Up (2021). He also publishes short fiction, as himself and also under the name Jack Deel. He teaches at the University of Limerick.

Twitter: @JFennellAuthor

Tríona Farrell

Tríona Farrell

Tríona is an Irish comic book colourist who has worked on titles such as Crowed, Black Widow, Spider-Man and Terminator and currently lives in Dublin with her partner and her cats.

Twitter: @treestumped

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Preview: Darren Shan: Ringmaster of the Macabre

Joining us at Octocon for the first time is author of creepy and utterly horrific stories, Darren Shan, for a child-friendly reading and an interview led by Janet O’Sullivan.

Sunday 3rd October at 2pm Irish time (UTC+1) – watch on our Twitch channel!

If you have questions for Darren, you can ask them during the interview via Twitch, or tweet them in advance @Octocon.

Darren Shan: Ringmaster of the Macabre

Global bestselling children’s author Darren Shan has terrified us with zombies, ghosts, vampires and exotic spiders as well as the outright horror of being a teenager. Come and listen as he spins us a tale and answers questions about his books, what really scares him, and what drew him to a career in horror.

About Darren Shan

Darren Shan was born in London but has spent most of his life in Limerick in Ireland, where he lives with his wife and children. He has published 57 books for both children and adults, and has sold over 30 million books worldwide, making bestseller charts in the USA, the UK, Ireland, Hungary, Dubai, Japan, Taiwan and elsewhere. He is currently writing the Archibald Lox fantasy series, of which six books have already been published, with the final three due to see print in 2022.

Website: | Twitter: @darrenshan | Facebook: darrenshanverified

Darren Shan

Preview: Shelly Bond and the Secrets of Comics Editing

Octocon is delighted to be able to bring you an interview with renowned comics editor Shelly Bond, conducted by writer and Octocon stalwart Michael Carroll.

Saturday 2nd October at 7pm Irish time (UTC+1) – watch on our Twitch channel!

If you have questions for Shelly, you can ask them during the interview via Twitch, or tweet them in advance @Octocon.

Shelly Bond and the Secrets of Comics Editing

Shelly Bond’s editing career includes a 22-year run at DC Comics’ Vertigo line and the creation of Black Crown, IDW’s ‘indie record label’ imprint that merged music and comics. As well as her work on Sandman, Lucifer, Clean Room, Fables and Kid Lobotomy, she’s also known for the Hey, Amateur and Insider Art anthologies, and her recent successful Kickstarter: Filth and Grammar: The Comic Editor’s Secret Handbook. Join us as she shares industry stories and insights.

About Shelly Bond

Shelly Bond is the editor of the Eisner award-winning series Bitter Root, Fables, and The Sandman: Overture. She’s the Editor-in-Chief of OFFREGISTER.PRESS and BLACK CROWN with her husband, artist Philip Bond. A former DC/Vertigo Executive and Editor for over two decades, Bond has been driven to edit & curate comic books, crush deadlines and design/innovate. She’s best known for her self-published anthologies funded through Kickstarter including Insider Art, Femme Magnifique: 50 Magnificent Women Who Changed The World, and Heavy Rotation. Shelly is currently writing and art directing her magnum opus, Filth & Grammar: The Comic Book Editor’s Secret Handbook, thanks to 2,375 Kickstarter backers. She wields red pens and tap shoes with equal aplomb and lives in Los Angeles.


Shelly Bond

Octocon Presents: Live from Dublin Space Port – What Next for Star Trek?

Our final Octocon Presents panel of the year will take place on Tuesday 14th September at 8pm IST (UTC+1), streamed as always on our Twitch channel, where you’ll also be able to ask questions of the panellists via the chat.

Octocon gathers together Irish Trek fans for a round table discussion of the explosion of new Star Trek material coming to us through the end of this year and into the next. Lower Decks returned in August, to be followed by Prodigy for kids on Nickelodeon; Picard brings back Q, we jump into the far future in Discovery’s fourth season, and we even get new action figures and perhaps a new motion picture too. Join us as our shuttle rises to the space dock and we anticipate Star Trek’s brightest future.

Meet our panel

Linda Butler

Linda Butler

Linda is a cosplayer, crafter and content creator. Trekkie since TNG. Half of The Nerd Escape Podcast on YouTube. She/her

Twitter: @heninahat1 | Instagram: @Heninahat | YouTube


Gerry Mc Evoy

Gerry Mc Evoy is a National Game Writer Award Winner and the European admin for the Vintage Role Playing Games group (not OSR affiliated), and runs the Irish conventions listing site, He also writes Sci-fi and Fantasy, runs a near daily Interactive Fiction game on Twitter (@legendgerry) and is a former world martial arts champion. He’s the sort of guy who reads the Mountains of Madness campaign, thinks what this needs is the cast of Muppets Treasure Island and then actually writes it. (Best Scenario Warpcon 2020)
The funny part about this bio is people are going to chide him about the other things he does that he’s neglected to mention.

Kat Dodd

Kat Dodd is an American transplant that escaped from a small town in Arkansas right between Toad Suck, Pickles Gap, and Wooster. The first story they ever wrote was in a purple crayon in their journal, and Kat hasn’t stopped writing since. Their typical genres are a conglomeration of fantasy/sci-fi, LGBTQI+, and YA, with a thread of romance going through them. Kat lives with their Spouse-Type-Creature, though Kat frequently forgets to feed him.

Twitter: @TheKatDodd

James Brophy (moderator)

James Brophy

A photographer and graphic designer based in Dublin, James has also worked in Visual effects and film development while writing materials and making art for Octocon on and off for the last 20 years.

Twitter: @jamesfbrophy

Glasgow in 2024 Book Club

This year’s Octocon book club will be hosted by the Glasgow in 2024 Worldcon bid.

Up for discussion is the novella This Is How You Lose the Time War by Amal El-Mohtar and Max Gladstone. Join the chat on Sunday afternoon (time to be confirmed).

Glasgow in 2024 background and logo, Octo and Octocon logo, cover of the book This is How You Lose the Time War by Amal El-Mohtar and Max Gladstone

Best described as an epic time-travelling love story, This Is How You Lose the Time War has the Hugo and Nebula Awards for Best Novella, the Reddit Stabby Award for Best Novella, and The British Science Fiction Association Award for Best Novella.

Among the ashes of a dying world, an agent of the Commandant finds a letter. It reads: Burn before reading.

Thus begins an unlikely correspondence between two rival agents hellbent on securing the best possible future for their warring factions. Now, what began as a taunt, a battlefield boast, grows into something more. Something epic. Something romantic. Something that could change the past and the future.

Except the discovery of their bond would mean death for each of them. There’s still a war going on, after all. And someone has to win that war. That’s how war works. Right?

Get it everywhere you get good books! (And if they don’t have it, order it!)

You can also chat to the Glasgow in 2024 bid during Octocon at their Discord fan table.

Calling fan organisations and conventions

Whether you’re a space navy or a writers or crafters’ group or another SF convention, we’d love to have you with us at Octocon.

Our virtual fan tables are text-based channels on our Discord server, where you can post information about your organisation or convention, and talk in real time to Octocon attendees.

We also offer the option of a voice channel, and if you’re interested in hosting a Zoom party or get-together during Octocon, we can help you with that too!

And best of it, it’s completely free! (Although you will need to register for Octocon – again, completely free!)

Apply for a fan table

Octo can help with all your fan table tech needs

Who’s coming to Octocon? (part 2)

Since Octocon is online again for a second year, we’re taking advantage of being able to have programme participants who haven’t been able to make it to an Octocon before – from all over the world, too, from Scotland to Australia, and Brazil by way of Italy!

We sincerely hope we’ll be able to welcome them all to a future in-person Octocon too…

Darren Shan

Darren Shan

Darren Shan was born in London but has spent most of his life in Limerick in Ireland, where he lives with his wife and children. He has published 57 books for both children and adults, and has sold over 30 million books worldwide, making bestseller charts in the USA, the UK, Ireland, Hungary, Dubai, Japan, Taiwan and elsewhere. He is currently writing the Archibald Lox fantasy series, of which six books have already been published, with the final three due to see print in 2022.

Website: | Twitter: @darrenshan | Facebook: darrenshanverified

Check out Darren’s own news post about his Octocon appearance.

Aliette de Bodard

Aliette de Bodard
Picture by Aliette de Bodard & Francesca Myman

Aliette de Bodard lives and works in Paris. She has won three Nebula Awards, a Locus Award, a British Fantasy Award and four British Science Fiction Association Awards. She was a double Hugo finalist for 2019 (Best Series and Best Novella).
Her most recent book is Fireheart Tiger (, a sapphic romantic fantasy inspired by pre colonial Vietnam, where a diplomat princess must decide the fate of her country, and her own. She also wrote Seven of Infinities (Subterranean Press), a space opera where a sentient spaceship and an upright scholar join forces to investigate a murder, and find themselves falling for each other. Other books include Of Dragons, Feasts and Murders, (JABberwocky Literary Agency, Inc.), a fantasy of manners and murders set in an alternate 19th Century Vietnamese court.
Her space opera books include The Tea Master and the Detective (2018 Nebula Award winner, 2018 British Fantasy Award winner, 2019 Hugo Award finalist). Her short story collection Of Wars, and Memories, and Starlight is out from Subterranean Press.

Web: | Twitter: @aliettedb | Instagram: @aliettedb

Amie Kaufman

Amie Kaufman

Amie Kaufman is a New York Times, USA Today and internationally bestselling author of science fiction and fantasy. Her multi-award winning work has been translated into nearly thirty languages, and has been described as “a game-changer” (Shelf Awareness), “stylistically mesmerising” (Publishers Weekly) and “out-of-this-world awesome” (Kirkus). Several of her series are currently in development for film and TV. Raised in Australia and occasionally Ireland, Amie has degrees in history, literature, law and conflict resolution, and is currently undertaking a PhD in Creative Writing. She is the host of the podcast Amie Kaufman on Writing. Amie lives by the sea in Melbourne, Australia with her husband, daughter, and rescue dog, and an extremely large personal library.

Twitter: @amiekaufman | Instagram: @amiekaufmanauthor

Laura (El) Lam

Laura Lam
Picture by Lawrie Photography

Originally from sunny California, Laura Lam now lives in cloudy Scotland. Lam is a Sunday Times Bestselling author whose work includes the near-future space thriller, Goldilocks, feminist space opera Seven Devils (co-written with Elizabeth May), BBC Radio 2 Book Club section False Hearts, the companion novel Shattered Minds, and the award-winning Micah Grey series: PantomimeShadowplay, and Masquerade. Lam’s short fiction and essays have appeared in anthologies such as Nasty WomenSolaris Rising 3, Cranky Ladies of HistoryScotland in Space, and more. Lam’s romance alter ego is Laura Ambrose. Lam lectures part-time at Edinburgh Napier University on the Creative Writing MA.

Web: | Twitter: @LR_Lam

Fabio Fernandes

Fabio Fernandes

Fabio Fernandes is a Brazilian writer currently based in Italy. He has published several books, among which the novels Os Dias da Peste and Back in the USSR (in Portuguese) and the collection L’Imitatore (in Italian). Also a translator, he is responsible for the translation to
Brazilian Portuguese of several SF novels, including Neuromancer and A Clockwork Orange. His short stories have been published online in Brazil, Portugal, Romania, the UK, New Zealand, and USA, and also in Ann and Jeff VanderMeer’s Steampunk II: Steampunk Reloaded, The Apex Book of World SF, Vol 2, Stories for Chip. Co-edited (with Djibril al-Ayad) the postcon anthology We See a Different Frontier, and, with Francesco Verso, the anthology Solarpunk – Come ho imparato ad amare il futuro (How I learned to love the future). Graduate of Clarion West, class of 2013. Formerly slush reader for Hugo Award-winner Clarkesworld Magazine. His first book in English, the collection Love. An Archaeology, was published in March by Luna Press Publishing. A steampunk novella, Under Pressure, will be published by NewCon Press later this year, and a weird SF novel, Love Will Tear Us Apart (in Portuguese) will be published by Uboro Lopes Editora in 2022.

Twitter: @fabiofernandes

Francesco Verso

Francesco Verso

Francesco Verso is a multiple-award Science Fiction writer and editor.
He has published: Antidoti umanie-DollNexhumanBloodbusters and I camminatori (made of The Pulldogs and No/Mad/Land).  Nexhuman and Bloodbusters – translated in English by Sally McCorry – have been published in the US by Apex Books, in the UK by Luna press and in China by Bofeng. He also works as editor of Future Fiction, a multicultural project, dedicated to scouting and publishing the best SF in translation from the World, from more than 30 countries and 11 languages with authors like Ian McDonald, Ken Liu, Liu Cixin, Vandana Singh, Xia Jia, Carme Torras, Olivier Paquet and others.& From 2019 he’s the Honorary Director of the Fishing Fortress SF Academy of Chongqing (China). In 2020 he co-organized the FutureCon, an online convention with more than 65 guests coming from 20 different countries.

Twitter: @Francesco_Verso

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