Mercury Retrograde Press has announced that they will cease operations on January 17, 2014, at which time all of their books will go out of print with rights reverting to their authors. Their final public appearance will be at the Memphis Comic and Fantasy Convention in November of 2013. Mercury retrograde has published Zachary Steele, Leona Wisoker, Edward Morris, and Larissa N. Niec, among others.
Fan and artist Cynthia Susan Dickinson (b.1954) died on August 9 following a two-year battle against atypical liver cancer. Dickinson attended numerous Worldcons and ConDFWs. Despite being blind from birth, Dickinson worked as an artist, exhibiting her wire-wrap jewelry at numerous art shows. She frequently attended author readings and worked as a librarian at the Dallas Public Library’s Central Branch from 1982 until shortly before her death.
Actor Lee Thompson Young (b.1984) committed suicide on August 19. Young appeared in bit roles on several genre shows, including Terminator: The Sarah Connor Chronicles, Jake 2.0, and The Event. He played Victor Stone/Cyborg in three episodes of Smallville and Al Gough on the first seven episodes of FlashForward. More recently, he was a regular on the non-genre Rizzoli and Isles.
The ENnie Awards were presented at GenCon on August 17. Founded in 2001, the awards honor the best in Role-playing publishing.
- Best Adventure: Pathfinder: Rise of the Runelords Anniversary Edition
- Best Aid/Accessory: Night’s Watch
- Best Art, Cover: Iron Kingdoms
- Best Art, Interior: Shadows of Esteren Book 1
- Best Blog: Gnome Stew
- Best Cartography: The Lands of Ice and Fire
- Best Electronic Book: Deadlands Reloaded: The Last Sons
- Best Family Game: Doctor Who: Adventures in Time & Space—11th Doctor Edition
- Best Free Game: Mazes and Perils RPG
- Best Free Product: Wayfinder #8
- Best Game: Iron Kingdoms
- Best Miniature: Pathfinder Bestiary Box
- Best Monster/Adversary: NPC Codex
- Best Podcast: TableTop: Dragon Age
- Best Production Values: Shadows of Esteren Book 1
- Best RPG Related Product: Kobold Guide to Wordbuilding
- Best Rules: Dungeon World
- Best Setting: Magnimar: City of Monuments
- Best Software: Roll20
- Best Supplement: Shadowrun 2050
- Best Website: Gnome Stew
- Best Writing: Kobold Guide to Worldbuilding
- Product of the Year: NPC Codex
- Judges’ Spotlight Winners: Hooper, Leviathans; Matthew Muth, School Daze; Jakud Nowosad, Deniable Asset; Megan Robertson, Killshot: Director’s Cut; Kurt Wiegel, Eldritch Skies
McMaster University in Hamilton, Ont., Canada will be hosting an academic conference entitled “Science Fiction: The Interdisciplinary Genre” from September 13-15 in honor of the donation of the Robert J. Sawyer archives to the school. In addition to Sawyer, the event will be attended by Julie E. Czerneda, Élisabeth Vonarburg, Robert Charles Wilson, John Robert Colombo, and David G. Hartwell. More than 30 papers will be presented on a variety of topics ranging from the hard sciences to philosophy to literature.
Actress Barbara Trentham (b.1945) died on August 2 from complications from leukemia. She appeared in several films in the 1970s, including Rollerball, The Possession of Joel Delaney, and Death Moon. She met John Cleese when Monty Python played the Hollywood Bowl and the two were married from 1981-1990.
Actor August Schellenberg (b.1936) died on August 15. Schellenberg is best known for his appearance in the Free Willy films, but has appeared in episodes of Stargate: Universe, Tremors 4, Heavy Metal, Out of Time, and Tales from the Cryptkeeper.
Christian Karl Gerhartsreiter (a.k.a. Clark Rockefeller) was found guilty earlier this year of the murder of John Sohus, a member of LASFS, in 1985. Gerhartsreiter may also have killed Linda Sohus, who vanished at the same time as her husband, but whose body has never been found. Gerhartsreiter has now been sentenced to 25 years for Sohus’s murder, plus an additional two years for the use of a deadly weapon. He is ineligible for parole.
Actress Lisa Robin Kelly (b.1970) died on August 15. Kelly was best known for her role on That 70s Show, but also appeared in episodes of Poltergeist: The Legacy, The X-Files, and the film Amityville: Dollhouse. Since leaving That 70s Show, Kelly has suffered from addiction and has legal problems.
Tananarive Due will receive a Lifetime Achievement Award in the Fine Arts from the Congressional Black Caucus Foundation in September. The award will be presented at the National Museum of Women in Arts on Sept. 18th. Antoine Fuqua and Carrie Mae Weems will be honored at the same time.