Author and Hugo nominee Hilbert Schenck (b.1926) died on December 2, 2013. Schenck began publishing science fiction in the April 1953 of Fantasy and Science Fiction with his story “Tomorrow’s Weather.” He went on to publish several more stories and novels into the 1990s, being nominated for the Hugo and Nebula Awards for his short fiction (his stories “The Battle of the Abaco Reefs” and “The Geometry of Narrative” appeared on both ballots for the years they came out). Schenck worked as an engineer and taught at the University of Rhode Island.
Michael Armstrong has been announced as the recipient of this year’s Kevin O’Donnell, Jr. Service to SFWA Award for his work on numerous committees since the 1980s, including the Contracts Committee, the Bylaws Committee, and the Grievance Committee. Armstrong has also served on Nebula Juries and multiple terms as Western Regional Director.The presentation will be made during the Nebula Awards weekend in San Jose, California the weekend of May 15-18.
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Charles E. Gannon won this year’s Compton Crook Award for best first novel for his book Fire with Fire. The award comes with a prize of $1,000 and the winner will be treated as a guest of honor for two consecutive Balticons. A plaque will be presented to Gannon at Balticon at 8:00pm on Friday, May 24, 2013.
Author and Hugo nominee William H. Patterson, Jr. (b.1951) died on April 21. Patterson was nominated for the Hugo for his 2010 biography Robert A. Heinlein: In Dialogue With His Century, Vol. 1 (1907-1948): Learning Curve. He had recently finished corrections on the second volume, Robert A. Heinlein: In Dialogue With His Century, Vol. 2: The Man Who Learned Better, which is scheduled for publication in June of this year.
The nominees for the Gemmell Awards for fantasy have been announced. The Gemmell Awards are popularly voted awards. Anyone can vote by visiting the Gemmell Award website. The winners will be announced June 13, 2014 in a ceremony at the Magic Circle in London.
The Legend Award for Best Fantasy Novel
- The Daylight War, by Peter V Brett
- Emperor of Thorns, by Mark Lawrence
- The Republic of Thieves, by Scott Lynch
- A Memory of Light, by Brandon Sanderson & Robert Jordan
- War Master’s Gate, by Adrian Tchaikovsky
The Morningstar Award for Best Fantasy Newcomer
- The Garden of Stones, by Mark T Barnes
- Headtaker, by David Guymer
- Promise of Blood, by Brian McLellan
- The Path of Anger, by Antoine Rouaud
- The Grim Company, by Luke Scull
The Ravenheart Award for Best Fantasy Cover Art:
- Benjamin Carre for the cover of The Republic of Thieves, by Scott Lynch
- Jason Chan for the cover of Emperor of Thorns, by Mark Lawrence
- Cheol Joo Lee for the cover of Skarsnik, by Guy Haley
- Gene Mollica & Michael Frost for the cover of Promise of Blood, by Brian McClellan
- Rhett Podersoo for the cover of She Who Waits, by Daniel Polansky
As previously noted, “Alison Barton, Samara Morgan, Gillian Polack, and Shay Telfer are this year’s candidates for GUFF, the Get-Up-and-Over Fan Fund. The winner of the race will travel from Autralasia to Europe for Loncon 3, next year’s Worldcon in London. GUFF is not limited by geography, so anyone may vote.” The ballot is now on-line, with voting set to end on June 9.
The winners of the 2014 BSFA Awards were announced at Eastercon on April 20.
- Novel: (tie) Ack Ack Macaque, by Gareth L. Powell; Ancillary Justice, by Ann Leckie
- Short Fiction: Spin, by Nina Allan
- Artwork: Cover of Tony Ballantyne’s Dream London, Joey Hi-Fi
- Non-Fiction: Wonderbook, by Jeff Vandermeer
The first Tolkien Society Awards were presented following the Society’s annual dinner on April 11 at Hay-on-Wye, United Kingdom.
- Best Article: “Tolkien and the Boy Who Didn’t Believe in Fairies,” by John Garth
- Best Artwork: “Eärendil the Mariner,” by Jenny Dolfen
- Best Book: Middle-Earth Envisioned, by Paul Simpson and Brian Robb
- Best Novel: The Fall of Arthur, edited by J.R.R. Tolkien and Christopher Tolkien
- Best Website: LOTR Project, by Emil Johansson
- Outstanding Contribution Award: Christopher Tolkien
NASA engineer John C. Houbolt (b.1919) died on April 20. Houbolt proposed the idea of a lunar orbit rendezvous to NASA rather than having a single rocket make the trip from Earth to the Moon, land on the Moon, and return. When Houbolt’s ideas were dismissed by his supervisor, he sent a letter outlining them to an incoming administrator in 1961.