November 16-17, 2013
Ramada Conference Centre Edmonton

20,000 Leagues Under the Spec!


What sort of event is Pure Speculation?

Pure Speculation is an annual Edmonton festival of the Fantastic, run by the Pure Speculation Society. It features a variety of interesting and engaging guest speakers from the worlds of SF and Fantasy Literature, Gaming, Media, Comics and Art. We give the fans of the genre an opportunity to get better acquainted with the folks who create the books, games, comics and movies they love. We provide a safe and welcoming space for geeks to congregate and exchange ideas and have fun.

What do they talk about?

The question to ask is what WON’T they talk about? We invite a number of specialists in every field imaginable from self-publishing to forensic science; from comic art to costume design. We’ll even have special Skype interviews with guests from the US and Spain. There’s lots of programming aimed at both established and emerging writers and artists. It’s guaranteed that the value of advice you’ll get from workshops and speakers and from just talking to the experts is definitely worth the cost of admission.

Is it just panels?

Pure Spec is more than speakers and panels, although many folks find them to be engaging and enlightening. Have a look at our website to see links to some YouTube samples of previous years’ Pure Spec presentations. We have evening events, like the Friday Taste of Pure Spec, a mixer that introduces the guests who will be appearing during the weekend. On Saturday evening we have a special social event, like a musical performance or even a dance. This year’s Masqued Ball celebrates our Steampunk theme. There’s a costume contest, opportunities for board games, readings by the authors, a charity auction of some cool geek stuff, and a Marketplace where you can buy lots of different items you can’t find in your local mall.

Does my weekend pass cover everything for the weekend?

Your $40 advance ticket covers the basic entry to the festival and allows you access to Friday evening’s Taste of Spec, all daily programming, gaming, and the Dealer Marketplace. The Steampunk Masqued Ball, a Saturday night special event, will be a ticketed event, and you can buy your tickets in advance or pay at the door. There should be plenty of other Saturday night programming for people who don’t want to go to the Steampunk Ball, as well as room parties sponsored by fan groups. If you want to attend the Steampunk Ball but don’t want to go to the convention, there will be tickets for sale. Watch the Pure Spec website for updates. There will be lots of merchandise in the Dealer Marketplace; you should be prepared to buy some cool stuff YOU WON'T BE ABLE TO BUY ANYWHERE ELSE. And we encourage our membership to bid on the many donated items in our Crystal Kids charity auction. There will be some unique items, like having our author guests name a character in their next books after you. Remember that some of our dealers will only be able to handle cash. There's a cash machine in the hotel.

How can I buy a weekend pass?

If you check the Pure Speculation website, you can find information about the options for buying a pass. We use PayPal, or else you can use your Eventbrite membership and purchase tickets online there.

Can I bring my partner or guests to the Taste of Pure Spec?

Non-members can attend, and will be asked to pay $10 at the door on Friday night.

Why do the some media guests charge an autograph fee?

Media guests who attend any convention of any type across North America often charge an autograph fee which goes towards covering the costs of their appearance at the convention. Your purchase of a photo, autograph or souvenir from the guests helps the all the parties involved, of which there are several, in bringing that guest to your festival. While Pure Spec may, on occasion, have media guests who charge extra for autographs or photo ops, we try to ensure that most of our guests are accessible to meet with all our members for no additional cost.

Will there be anything for the kids?

Pure Speculation supports the Crystal Kids charity, and we will have a special kids’ costume contest, as well as an offering of Kid-friendly science programming. We are always on the lookout for other presenters who can offer something of interest to youth.

Will there be a banquet or food service?

We don't have an official banquet at Pure Speculation, although there may be some food events running parallel to the main festival, held by groups associated with our community. The hotel has a lounge, restaurant and coffee shop. The area has a number of fast food outlets, and coffee establishments; they will be listed in the convention program book. You won't need to go far to get food.

What about personal safety?

The Pure Speculation Code of Conduct is clearly stated on our website here. We have a zero tolerance policy when it comes to any sort of harassment. “No” means NO! The event is Family Friendly, even if we may offer some “18 and over” programming in the late night hours.

I bought my ticket through Eventbrite. Where do I pick up the pass for Pure Spec that I purchased in advance?

You can help us by bringing the printed Eventbrite receipt with you, but we will have your name on a list at Registration. If you have purchased the tickets by using PayPal, we will send you an email to confirm.

*Option one*: You can pick up your ticket on Friday, November 15, at the “Taste of Spec” event in the convention hotel. We’ll open our Registration at 6:30 pm and the fun will start at 7:00 pm.

*Option two*: If you somehow missed the fun of “Taste of Spec”, you can pick up your ticket anytime at the Pure Spec Registration Desk when the Festival opens on Saturday, November 16. This year, we’re at the Ramada Conference Centre on Kingsway.

If you purchased a Saturday pass, you can pick up your ticket anytime at Registration . If you purchased a Sunday pass, you can pick up your ticket anytime at the Registration Desk . On another note, if you purchased more than one ticket, using Eventbrite, please send us an e-mail at and provide us with the name of the other ticket holder(s) so that we can have festival badges already prepared when they arrive to pick them up. If you have the other ticket holder(s) permission, please provide us with their e-mail address so that we can send them this notice.