The Space Shuttle Discovery completed its final mission at 11:57 AM ET on March 9, 2011. Discovery has flown 39 missions since it was first launched at 12:41 PM on August 30, 1984. Discovery has spent 365 days in space traveling 148,221,665 miles in 5,830 orbits. On its final mission, Discovery was crewed by Alvin Drew, Nicole Stott, Eric Boe, Steven Lindsey, Michael Barratt, and Steve Bowen
Buzzy Multimedia, a publisher of audio book and specialty t-shirts, has announced plans to launch Buzzy Mag, an online zine of fiction by new and established sf authors. The magazine has announced a rate of 5 cents/word for stories up to 10,000 words. Buzzy Mag is also instituting a beta reading system which requires authors who submit to agree to read and critique at least two other submissions.
The Strathclyde Theatre Group with the Radio Theatre Group will present a reading of the Hitchhiker Guide to the Galaxy radio scripts from March 24 through April 2 at 7:30 pm. Ticket prices are Mon – Tues £7/4, Wed – Sat £10/7. The event will occur at the Ramshorn Theatre at the University of Strathclyde in Glasgow.
The Charles River Museum of Industry & Innovation will be hosting the International Steampunk City the weekend of May 6-8, 2011. The event will take place at various locations through the city of Waltham, Massachusetts, artwork, street theatre, and exhibits.
The judges for the 2011 Philip K. Dick Award have been announced. The Philip K. Dick Award honors the best original paperback publication, whether mass market or trade, novel or collection. The award is sponsored by PSFS with support from the Philip K. Dick Trust and is presented annually at Norwescon. This year’s judges include Scott Baker, Mark Budz, Roby James, Darrell Schweitzer, and Alice K. Turner.
Director Charles Jarrott (b. 1927) died on March 4 of prostate cancer. Jarrott directed the 1973 production of Lost Horizon, the television production of The Strange Case of Dr. Jekyll and Mr. Hyde, Disney’s superhero spoof Condorman, and multiple episodes of the television series Out of This World. He won a Golden Globe for his film Anne of the Thousand Days, perhaps one of his best known films, and is also known for the historical Mary, Queen of Scots.
Chicago’s One Book, One City program has selected to read Neil Gaiman’s 2003 novel Neverwhere for its Spring 2011 choice. The Chicago Public Library chooses two books a year and this Fall’s selection will mark the program’s tenth anniversary. The program includes book discussions, public programs, a script reading of last year’s dramatic production of the play, and Gaiman will speak in Chicago on April 12 and 13.
Publisher Walter Zacharius (b.1925) died on March 2. Zacharius founded of Kensington Publishing in 1974 after working for Lancer Books. Over the years, Zacharius published science fiction under the Zebrea imprint (which is now a Romance imprint).
Author Edward Wellen (b.1919) died on January 15 of congestive heart failure. Wellen wrote numerous science fiction and mystery short stories, as well as mystery novels.
Following the sale of the Griffith University facilities Clarion South used up until 2009, the writers workshop has had difficulty finding a suitable venue at a reasonable cost to hold the intensive writers program. The organizers had hoped to hold it again in 2012, but have determined that they won’t be able to and have placed the program on hold indefinitely, with the hope that it will continue at some point.