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Every day, items of interest to you arrive in our email. Our bi-monthly format doesn't lend itself to daily updates. However, this is a small inconvenience to our Contributing Editor Steven H Silver. He's begun this column which will fill you in on recent news in science fiction. We'll be updating the page as he sends in new items.

Did you miss something? Have a look at last month's news page.

Material for possible inclusion here should be sent to Steven H Silver at

27 November 2002
Change of Editor at Horror Garage
Horror Garage Editor Paula Guran has been dismissed following issue six, which is currently shipping. All manuscripts have been turned over to publisher Rich Black, who will be editing the magazine. No further submissions are being accepted until new writers' guidelines have been issued. Following Guran's dismissal, Assistant Editor Michele Patterson resigned. Launched in 2000, Horror Garage won an International Horror Guild Award in 2001 for Best Publication.

Endeavor Award
The Endeavor Award was presented to Ursula K. Le Guin for her collection Tales from Earthsea at Orycon on November 23. The Endeavor Award recognizes excellence in writing by a Pacific Northwest author. This year's panel of judges consisted of Howard V. Hendrix, Harry Turtledove and Elisabeth Vonarburg.

Malcolm Ashworth (November 23)

Malcolm Ashworth (b.1933) died of heart failure in a pub on Saturday, November 23. Ashworth has been active in fandom since the 1950s, although he recently curtailed his con-going due to heart disease and other ailments. Despite this, he still was able to attend club meetings of the Leeds Group. Until 1984, Ashworth published the fanzine ROT, and has continued to contribute pieces to other fanzines in the years since then. He is survived by his wife, Hazel.

25 November 2002
Farscape Fans Create Ad
In what may be a first, fans of the cancelled series Farscape have created an advertisement and purchased air time on cable outlets in 24 cities in an attempt to save the show. The ads, which will run during the week of November 24, mostly in the middle of the night, are hoped to draw mainstream attention to the show and result in a reprieve for the series.

24 November 2002
MINNEAPA Announces the End
MINNEAPPA, an amateur press association 'zine has announced that issue 400 will be its last issue. Issue 400 will be produced in January 2003. MINNEAPPA has been produced on a monthly-every six weeks basis. Recent issues have dwindled to only a handful of contributors, with the most recent issue, 398, only containing two contributors.

National Book Award to Science Fiction Novel
Nancy Farmer has received the National Book Award for Young People's Literature for the novel The House of the Scorpion. The award includes a check for $10,000 from the National Book Foundation, a 501c3 not for profit organization. Farmer beat out four other authors, including M.T. Anderson, whose novel Feed is also science fiction to win the award. Farmer has previously won the Writers of the Future Grand Prize and the Golden Duck Award.

Clarke-Bradbury Competition
The European Space Agency (ESA) has announced the Clarke-Bradbury Competition for 2003 to promote innovative ideas for future space technologies. Contestants should submit a story of no more than 2500 words using science fiction technologies as the focal point of the story. The contest is open to anyone between 15 and 30 years of age and the deadline for submissions is February 28, 2003.

Black Hole: Coming to Our Neighborhood
Astronomers believe they have found a black hole about 6,000 light years from Earth traveling in our general direction. The black hole, known as GRO J1655-40, is traveling at a speed of 400,000 km/h, nearly four times faster than stars in its vicinity. Although previously predicted, GRO J1655-40 is the first fast-moving black hole discovered. Astronomers believe its closest approach to earth will be 1,000 light years.

17 November 2002
Stan Lee vs. Marvel
Stan Lee is suing Marvel Comics, the firm with whom his name is synonymous, for creative accounting to show that Marvel made no profits from the blockbuster film Spider-Man and therefore does not owe Lee any share of the profits. Lee has also asked the courts to make sure that he receives his proper share of forthcoming films based on Marvel properties the Hulk, X-Men and Daredevil.

12 November 2002
Rotsler Award
The Rotsler Award, presented by SCIFI (Southern California Institute for Fan Interests) was presented to Fan Artist Kurt Erichsen. The prize, which remembers fan artist William Rotsler, includes a plaque and a $300 honorarium.

Andre Norton Update
Andre Norton has returned home following her surgery for a laproscopic hernia repair. According to a message from Dr. Rose Wolf, Andre Norton's friend and assistant, she is following the recovery pattern and pace expected for a woman her age and has begun to eat solid food again after two and a half weeks on a liquid diet.

Name a Martian Rover
NASA and the Planetary Society are sponsoring a contest to allow school children, between ages 5 and 13, to name two rovers which are scheduled to be launched to Mars in the summer of 2003. Entries must include names for both probes and cannot use names which are trademarked, previously used by NASA or a living person. In addition to the names, the students must include an essay between 50 and 500 words promoting their recommendations. An earlier contest in 1997 was won by 12-year old Valerie Ambroise, who recommended Sojourner. The deadline for submissions in January 31, 2003.

Another Bookstore Closes
Melbourne Australia bookstore Slow Glass owner Justin Ackroyd closed the doors on October 26. Although there will no longer be a physical location, he will continue catalogue sales and library sales. Slow Glass has a website at

Jerry Sohl (November 4)
Peg Phillips (November 7)

Author Jerry Sohl (b.1913) died in his home in Thousand Oaks, CA. He began writing in the 1950s and published under several pseudonyms, including Nathan Butler and Sean Mei Sullivan. His first story was "The 7th Order." Perhaps Sohl's most famous novel was Costigan's Needle. In the late fifties and sixties, he turned his attention to screenwriting and produced scripts for The Twilight Zone, Star Trek and The Outer Limits.

Peg Phillips (b.1918), who portrayed Ruth Anne Miller on the series Northern Exposure, has died of lung disease. Phillips, who only began acting when she was 65, not only appeared in the fantasy-influenced Northern Exposure, but also the shows Seventh Heaven and Touched by an Angel.

Obituary: Correction
Frederick A. Raborg, Jr. (67) was an actor and writer who edited the magazines Amelia and SPSM&H. He died on August 13, 2001. Although most of his publications were under his own name, he wrote science fiction using the pseudonym Dick Baldwin

Last year, I wrote of Frederick Raborg (above) that he wrote SF under the name Dick Baldwin. In fact, while he did use the name, he never published using it. There is an author named Dick Baldwin who does write under that name and is very much alive.

7 November 2002
Winnipeg Selling Off SF
The University of Winnipeg Library is selling off items from its vast holdings of science fiction. Willed to the university in the late 1990s by Robert Stimpson, the collection contains more than 30,000 books and periodicals. Because of space limitations, the collection, which was valued at C$250,000 was stored in a basement storage room at a Greyhound Station. Last month, the collection was sold to rare book dealer L.W. Currey for a reported C$140,000. The university retains about 4,000 hardcovers from the collection.

Indian to Fly in Space
On Monday, the space shuttle Endeavor is scheduled to lift off with the first Native American astronaut, John Bennett Herrington, a member of the Chickasaw Nation. Chickasaw Nation Governor Bill Anoatubby has presented Herrington with a Chickasaw flag which will be among the astronaut's personal artifact when he goes into space. This mission will ferry astronauts back and forth from the International Space Station.

Update: Agreement Reached with Fairmont
ConJose is not paying the aggregate cleaning charge, merely a negotiated cleaning charge, to the Fairmont.

Update: Actress Guilty
Wynona Rider was given probation, no jail time.

6 November 2002
SF Author Loses Senate Bid
Illinois science fiction author Steve Burgauer lost his bid for the United States Senate in a race against Incumbent Democrat Dick Durbin and Republican Jim Durkin. Burgauer, whose novels include Fornax and In the Shadow of Omen, was running as the Libertarian candidate.

Dangerous Visions Closes Doors
The Dangerous Visions bookstore, located in Sherman Oaks, California, has announced that it will close its doors on November 10. Rather than going out of business, Owners Arthur Byron Cover and Lydia Marano Cover have stated that they will became an internet store. Dangerous Visions was established in 1981 and named after Harlan Ellison's seminal anthology. On November 23, Ellison will participate in the store's last event, signing copies of the recent reprinting of Dangerous Visions in the photography studio next to the store. Autographings scheduled for Barbara Hambly and Harry Turtledove have been cancelled. The on-line version of the store will continue to be at

James White Award
The 2002 James White Award for a short story by an unpublished author was awarded to Julian West, whose story, "Vita Brevis Ars Longa" will be published in a future issue of Interzone.

Ross MacDonald Literary Award
Ray Bradbury has won the first Ross MacDonald Literary Award. The award is presented by the Santa Barbara Book Council.

Actress Guilty
Actress Winona Ryder, who has appeared in genre films "Bram Stoker's Dracula" and the Hugo Award-winning "Edward Scissorhands," has been found guilty of vandalism and grand theft following accusations that she attempted to shop lift $5,500 in clothing from a Saks Fifth Avenue store. Ryder may face up to three years in prison.

5 November 2002
Jonathan Harris (November 4)

Veteran actor Jonathan Harris (b.1914), who is best known for his portrayal of Dr. Zachary Smith on the television series "Lost in Space," has died from a blood clot in his heart while receiving treatment for a chronic back problem. Despite an accent and mannerisms which made him appear British, Harris was born in the Bronx to Russian immigrant parents. In recent years, Harris has been providing animation voice-overs, including the elderly toy repairman in "Toy Story 2."

4 November 2002
World Fantasy Awards Presented
This year's World Fantasy Awards were presented on November 3 at World Fantasy Convention in Minneapolis, MN.
Life Achievement: George Scithers and Forrest J Ackerman
Best Novel: The Other Wind, by Ursula K. Le Guin
Best Novella: "The Bird Catcher," by S.P. Somtow
Best Short Story: "Queen for a Day," by Albert E. Cowdrey
Best Anthology: The Museum of Horrors, edited by Dennis Etchison
Best Collection: Skin Folk, by Nalo Hopkinson
Best Artist: Allen Koszowski
Special Award, Professional: (tie) Stephen Jones for editing and Jo Fletcher for editing the Fantasy Masterworks series for Gollancz
Special Award, Non-Professional: Raymond Russell & Rosalie Parker for Tartarus Press

New Home Video Record
On Friday, its initial day of release, the Sam Raimi film "Spider-Man" sold an estimated 7 million copies in both DVD and videocassette, with an estimated 11 million in sales over the first weekend. 80% of the copies sold were on DVD, which was a two-disc set. "Spider-Man" broke the previous single day sales record, which was set on September 17 by "Monster's, Inc.," which sold 5 million copies on its first day. "Spider-Man's" reign may not last long as the extended version of "The Lord of the Rings: The Fellowship of the Ring" and "Star Wars: Episode II: Attack of the Clones" are both scheduled for release on November 12.

Andre De Toth (October 27)

Hungarian-born director Andre de Toth (b.1913?) died of an aneurysm in his home. Although most of his work was in the western genre, de Toth, who lost an eye and his depth perception as a child, was best known for the film "House of Wax," made in 3-D, which spurred the 3-D craze of the 1950s. He became a director in 1938 and in 1939 was assigned to make Nazi propaganda films of the invasion of Poland. That same year, he left for England, eventually finding his way to Hollywood in 1942.

3 November 2002
Update on Andre Norton
Andre Norton went into the hospital for a minor surgery and complications arose. She is currently waiting the results of tests.

Nova Awards Presented
The Nova Awards are presented annually at Novacon to recognize achievement in fan writing and artwork. Voters are required to have received at least six different fanzines during the period for which the awards are being given.
Dave Hicks for art
Claire Brialey for writing
PLOKTA for zine

Ignotus Awards Presented
The Ignotus Award were presented in Barcelona by the Spanish Association of Fantasy and Science Fiction (Asociación Española de Fantasía y Ciencia Ficción AEFCF).
Best Novel: Demonios en el cielo, by Gabriel Bermídez (Aroz Editor)
Best Novella: Contra el tiempo, by Juan Miguel Aguilera y Rafael Marín (Artifex Estelar)
Best Short Story: "Fortaleza de invicta castidad", by Eduardo Gallego y Guillem Sánchez (Pulp Magazine extra 2001).
Best Anthology: Premio UPC, VV.AA. coordinado por Miquel Barceló (Ediciones B)
Best Book of Essays: Las 100 Bestes novela CF s.XX, VVAA (La Factoría de Ideas)
Best Article: "El erotismo en novelas de a duro", by José Carlos Canalda (Pulp Magazine extra 2001).
Best Illustration: "Portada de Demonios en el cielo," by Koldo Campo (Espiral CF 23).
Best Audio-visual Production : Los otros, by Alejandro Amenabar (Largometraje).
Best Poem: no award
Best Magazine: Pulp Magazine, by Mario Moreno y Román Goicoechea.
Best Foreign Novel: La estación de la calle Perdido (Perdido Street Station), by China Mieville (La Factoría de Ideas).
Best Foreign Short Story: "Las 43 dinastías de Antares" ("The 43 Antarean Dynasties"), by Mike Resnick (Gigamesh 30).
Best Web Site: "Bibliopolis" (Luis G. Prado)

2 November 2002
Andre Norton Ailing
Author Andre Norton is reported to be in the hospital, although different reports indicate a variety of ranges of seriousness of her ailments. Some reports have stated that Norton is gravely ill and "her spirits have sunk to a life-threatening low," while others have noted that "her illness is not thought to be life-threatening." Norton began writing with the story "People of the Crater," which was published under the pseudonym Andrew North. She is perhaps best known for the Witch World cycle.

Charles Sheffield (November 2)

British-born author Charles Sheffield (b.1935), who was diagnosed with a brain tumor earlier this year, has died following multiple surgeries to alleviate the problem. He was the author of numerous books, including the recent Dark as Day and The Amazing Dr. Darwin. He won the 1993 Nebula Award for his novelette "Georgia On My Mind," which also won the 1994 Hugo Award. His novel Brother to Dragons won the John W. Campbell Memorial Award. Sheffield served as toastmaster at the 1998 worldcon in Baltimore. In addition to being an author, Sheffield was also a physicist and contributed numerous fact articles to Analog. He has published over 100 technical papers and scientific articles. Sheffield was married to author Nancy Kress.

1 November 2002
Agreement Reached with Fairmont
Following ConJosé, many members who stayed at the Fairmont Hotel found a "carpet cleaning charge" on their credit card bills. Numerous complaints ensued and the Fairmont began working with ConJosé to clear up the problem. This week, ConJosé announced that all charges to members' credit cards will be credited. In return, the ConJosé committee has agreed to pay the aggregate charges to the Fairmont. ConJosé has stated that this payment will not affect its ability to pay off its other obligations.

Death of a Space Pioneer
Dimitri Malashenkov of the Institute for Biomedical Problems in Moscow has stated that Laika, the first living animal to fly into space on Sputnik 2 in November 1957 died within five to seven hours of launch due to overheating. Formerly, the Soviet Union had announced that Laika had lived within the capsule for a full week before dying. When Sputnik 2's launch was announced, the Soviets stated that Laika had enough food and water to last for ten days. Sputnik 2 eventually burned up in the atmosphere on April 14, 1958.

Copyright © 2002 Steven H Silver

Steven H Silver is a four-time Hugo Nominee for Best Fan Writer and the editor of the anthologies Wondrous Beginnings, Magical Beginnings, and Horrible Beginnings (DAW Books, January, February and March, 2003). In addition to maintaining several bibliographies and the Harry Turtledove website, Steven is heavily involved in convention running and publishes the fanzine Argentus.

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