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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 or that which lists all of our news pages.

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

30 July 2005
World Fantasy Award Nominations Announced
The World Fantasy Awards will be presented at World Fantasy Con in Madison, Wisconsin during the weekend of November 3-6.

Susanna Clarke, Jonathan Strange & Mr Norrell
Stephen R. Donaldson, The Runes Of the Earth
China Miéville, Iron Council
Sean Stewart, Perfect Circle
Gene Wolfe, The Wizard Knight

Leena Krohn, Tainaron: Mail from Another City
Kim Newman, "Soho Golem"
Michael Shea, "The Growlimb"
Lisa Tuttle, My Death
Gene Wolfe, "Golden City Far"

Short Fiction:
Theodora Goss, "The Wings of Meister Wilhelm"
Margo Lanagan, "Singing My Sister Down"
Kelly Link, "The Faery Handbag"
China Miéville, "Reports of Certain Events in London"
Barbara Roden, "Northwest Passage"

The Faery Reel: Tales from the Twilight Realm ed. Ellen Datlow & Terri Windling
Polyphony 4 ed. Deborah Layne & Jay Lake
Acquainted With The Night ed. Barbara & Christopher Roden
Dark Matter: Reading The Bones ed. Sheree R. Thomas
The First Heroes: New Tales of the Bronze Age ed. Harry Turtledove & Noreen Doyle

Peter Crowther, Songs Of Leaving
John M. Ford, Heat Of Fusion and Other Stories
Eileen Gunn, Stable Strategies And Others
Margo Lanagan, Black Juice
Joe R. Lansdale, Mad Dog Summer and Other Stories
Ian R. MacLeod, Breathmoss and Other Exhalations
Lucius Shepard, Trujillo and Other Stories

Kinuko Y. Craft
John Jude Palencar
John Picacio
Charles Vess

Special Award: Professional:
Gavin Grant & Kelly Link (for Small Beer Press)
S.T. Joshi (for scholarship)
Sharyn November (for editing)
Gordon Van Gelder (for F&SF)
Terri Windling (for editing)

Special Award: Non-Professional:
Sandy Auden and Ariel (for
Matthew Cheney (for
Robert Morgan (for Sarob Press)
Barbara and Christopher Roden (for All Hallows magazine)
Michael Walsh (for Old Earth Books)

29 July 2005
New "Planets" Discovered
Two scientific teams have announced the discovery of trans-Neptunian objects, known officially as 2003 UB313 and 2003 EL61. The objects appear to be slightly larger and slightly smaller than Pluto, and 2003 EL61 appears to have a moon. Although both were originally discovered in 2003, observations of 2003 EL61 have been found dating back to 1955. EL61 appears to be 930 miles in diameter and UB313 is believed to be anywhere from slightly larger than Pluto to twice its size. UB313 was discovered by the same team to discover Sedna last year.

Martian Ice
The European Space Agency (ESA) has discovered a lake of frozen water ice on Mars in a crater located in Vastitas Borealis using the Mars Express. The ice patch is present throughout the year because of temperatures in that area of Mars. The crater, formed by an ancient impact, is 22 miles wide by 1.2 miles deep.

28 July 2005
Shuttle Fleet Grounded
Only a day after the space shuttle Discovery returned to space, NASA announced that the fleet would be grounded once again following its return to Earth. Foam falling from the exterior fuel tank repeated the problem which caused the destruction of the Columbia in 2003, although NASA does not believe that the Discovery is in danger. The shuttle docked at the International Space Station shortly after the announcement was made, the first shuttle docking there since 2002.

Branson to Build Space Fleet
Richard Branson and Burt Rutan have formed a company, the Spaceship Company, which will have a fleet of ships based on Rutan's SpaceShipOne design for commercial flights. With the first flights scheduled for 2008, Branson said the initial price for a flight would be $200,000, but hopes the price would come down. The initial fleet would consisted of five SpaceShipOnes and two White Knight launch systems.

Wheel of Time Contest
Tor Books is sponsoring a contest as a tie in with the next Wheel of Time novel, Knife of Dreams. Prizes will include a Grand Prize of a leather-bound copy of Knife of Dreams which will include a personalized message from Robert Jordan and an original painting by Wheel of Time cover artist Darrell K. Sweet of the main character, Rand al'Thor. The contest begins on Tuesday, August 2nd at

27 July 2005
Ill Fan
Arizona fan Ray Gish has been diagnosed with prostate cancer. The cancer has metastasized and he is now under hospice care. Gish has worked for many years as a con art show director.

Shuttle Launch
The space shuttle Discovery returned to space on July 26, marking the first manned launch by the US since the space shuttle Columbia disintegrated during landing on February 1, 2003. Discovery was also the shuttle used for return to flight following the Challenger disaster. More than 100 cameras were used by NASA to observe the launch and two pieces of debris were seen to fall off and strike the shuttle during launch. A robotic arm will be used to assess the damage to the shuttle.

26 July 2005
Proposed Editor Hugo Split
Fan Chris Barkley and editor Patrick Nielsen Hayden have announced a proposal, to be made at Interaction, to split the Best Editor Hugo into two categories. The two categories would be one for magazine editors, similar to the current category, but implicitly mentioning the eligibility of on-line editors, and one for book editors.

Conadian Makes Donation to Interaction
Conadian, the 1994 Worldcon, has announced a donation of £1,000 pounds to this year's worldcon, Interaction. Conadian was held in Winnepeg, Canada and Interaction is scheduled to be held in Glasgow, Scotland at the beginning of August. The donation is made to enhance the convention and to promote Canadian fandom at the convention.

25 July 2005
Chesley Nominees
ASFA has announced the nominations for this year's Chesley Awards, to be presented at Interaction in Glasgow.

Best Cover Illustration: Hardback Book
Rick Berry for Queen of the Amazons
Tony DiTerlizzi for The Wrath of Mulgarath: The Spiderwick Chronicles Book 5
Donato Giancola for The Nameless Day
Todd Lockwood for Glass Dragons
Ruth Sanderson for The Snow Princess
Stephen Youll for The Dragon's Son

Best Cover Illustration: Paperback Book
Patrick Arrasmith for Agyar
Gregory Brides for City of Pearl
Kenn Brown for ReVisions
Kinuko Y. Craft for Thomas the Rhymer
John Jude Palencar for The Wild Reel
John Picacio for Her Smoke Rose Up Forever

Best Cover Illustration: Magazine
Jim Burns for Heavy Metal, March 2004
Leo & Diane Dillon for Argosy, January/February 2004
Tom Kidd for Weird Tales #336, December 2004
Marianne Plumridge for Weird Tales #334, January/February 2004
Omar Rayyan for Spider Magazine, October 2004

Best Interior Illustration
Kenn Brown for Fantastic Voyage
Paul Kidby for The Art of Discworld
Ruth Sanderson for The Snow Princess
Charles Vess for Medicine Road
Terryl Whitlatch for The Katurran Odyssey

Best Color Work: Unpublished
Michael Dashow for Impromptu First Contact, watercolor
Marc Fishman for Water Nymph, oil
Don Maitz for Out of the Woods, oil
Omar Rayyan for Man with a Gold Earring, oil
Lawrence Allen Williams for The Ascendant, oil & pencil

Best Monochrome Work: Unpublished
David Deen for Dragon & Spaceship, pencil
Robert Elneskog for The Halls of Valhalla, pencil
Mael for of Tarin Turambar, ink
J.P. Targete for Fantagoria, pencil
Charles Vess for Mary Culhane, charcoal

Best Three-Dimensional Art
William Basso for The Ambassador, resin
Real Musgrave for Dragon Riders, resin
Lawrence Northey for AF-Z4 The Duke an' Blinky, metal & glass
Richard Sardinha for Copper Dragon Tiles, resin
Lisa Snellings-Clark for Gentle Passage, paper maché

Best Product Illustration
Wayne Barlowe for Hellboy concept design
Kenn Brown for Stargate Atlantis production design
Renee Milot for The Pearl Fishers, Philadelphia Opera promo art
Dean Morrissey for Celtic King fine art print
Greg Spalenka for "Call For Entries" poster for Spectrum 12

Best Gaming Related Illustration
Dave Allsop for Boneclaw interior for Monster Manual III,
Ed Cox for Sea Kin Haggling interior for Races of Destiny
Les Edwards cover for Creature of Havoc
William O'Connor for Training a Dire Badger interior for Races of Stone
Mark Zug cover for Monte Cook's Arcana Unearthed

Best Art Director
Scott Allie for Dark Horse Comics
Laura Cleveland for Realms of Fantasy Magazine
Irene Gallo for Tor Books
Robert Raper for Wizards of The Coast
David Stevenson for Del Rey Books

Award for Contribution to ASFA
Kat Angeli - production & printing of 2004 Chesley brochure
Alan Beck - art direction of ASFA Quarterly
Elaine Fisher & Andrea Senchy – 2004 Chesley Awards ceremony
Ingrid Neilson - ongoing promotion of ASFA & the Chesley Awards
Larry Vela - work above and beyond officer duties

Award for Artistic Achievement
Brad Bird
John Howe
Jean "Moebius" Giraud
Omar Rayyan
Drew Struzan
Darrell K. Sweet

Clarke-Bradbury Winners
The winners of the second Clarke-Bradbury International Science Fiction Competition organized by ESA's Technology Transfer and Promotion Office have been announced. This year's entries were on the theme of a Space Elevator.
Story category: "Clever," by Christian Doan
Image category: Africa Tower - the African Space Elevator, by Frank Lewecke

Ursa Major Awards
The winners of the fourth annual Ursa Major Awards for the Best in anthropomorphic/"funny animal" literature and art first published 2004, were announced at a presentation ceremony on Sunday, July 10, 2005 at Anthrocon, held at the The Wyndham Philadelphia Hotel at Franklin Plaza in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania, on July 7-10, 2005.
Best Anthropomorphic Motion Picture: Shrek 2
Best Anthropomorphic Dramatic Series: Father of the Pride
Best Anthropomorphic Novel: Never Again a Man by Charles Matthias
Best Anthropomorphic Short Fiction: "Felicia and the Tailcutter's Curse" by Charles P.A. Melville
Best Anthropomorphic Other Literary Work: The Art of Usagi Yojimbo by Stan Sakai
Best Anthropomorphic Comic Book: Usagi Yojimbo by Stan Sakai
Best Anthropomorphic Comic Strip: Faux Pas by Robert & Margaret Carspecken
Best Anthropomorphic Fanzine: Tales of the Tai-Pan Universe
Best Anthropomorphic Published Illustration: Cover painting by Kacey Maltzman for Fur Plus #22
Best Anthropomorphic Game: Sly 2: Band of Thieves

Matrix Lawsuit Dismissed
A judge has dismissed a lawsuit brought by Sophia Stewart against the Wachowski brothers in which she claimed they stole the concept for the film "The Matrix" from her. The dismissal was based on Stewart and her attorneys' failure to respond in a timely manner to the court's schedule for management of the case.

Iain M. Banks on Mastermind
Author Iain M. Banks will be taping an episode of the British quiz show Mastermind on August 1. Banks's area of expertise for the show will be "whiskey," a topic about which he has written a book in the past. The show is expected to air some time in December.

Actor Edward Bunker (b.1933) died on July 19. Bunker was convicted of several crimes and was on the FBI's 10 Most Wanted List as well as being the youngest prisoner ever placed in San Quentin Prison. He began acting with "Straight Time" in 1978, and appeared in the Stephen King film "The Running Man" in 1987.

20 July 2005
Saberhagen To Miss CascadiaCon
Fred Saberhagen, the Guest of Honor for this year's NASFiC, CascadiaCon, has announced he will be unable to attend the convention. Saberhagen has been diagnosed with metastatic prostate cancer. Saberhagen is working with doctors to get his cancer stabilized and hope to be attending conventions again in the near future.

Actress Geraldine Fitzgerald (b.1913) died on July 17. Fitzgerald had a long career in film, beginning in 1934. In 1986, she appeared in her one genre film, Poltergeist II: The Other Side.

Actor James Doohan (b.1920), best known for playing Montgomery Scott on Star Trek, died on July 20. Doohan got his start in the television show Space Command in 1953. He has provided voice work for a variety of cartoons as well. Doohan is credited with creating the basic Klingon language for Star Trek: The Motion Picture. In recent years, he has suffererd from Parkinson's Disease and Alzheimer's.

Comic artist Jim Aparo (b.1933) died on July 19. Aparo was considered one of the definitive Batman artists from the mid-1970s and also did work on Aquaman and the Phantom Stranger. He began working at Charlton in the 1960s, but was brought the DC by Dick Giordano.

CUFF Donation
Conadian, the 1995 Worldcon, has donated $500 to CUFF, the Canadian Unity Fan Fund. Previously, Conadian donated $750 to the fund which brings a Western Canadian to Canvention in the East or an Eastern Canadian to Canvention in the West.

15 July 2005
Multi-stellar Planet Found
Caltech astronomer Maciej Konacki has announced the discovery of a Jovian planet in orbit around a triple star system, HD 188753 in Cygnus. The system is about 149 light years from earth and the planet orbits at about the distance to Saturn. The new finding could upset existing theories that planets usually form out of gas and dust circling a single star, and could lead scientists to look in new places for planets. In the paper, Konacki refers to the planet as a Tatooine planet, after the home of Luke Skywalker, which orbited a binary star system.

Spectrum Exhibit in New York
Spectrum Fantastic Art will hold its first exhibition of original artworks that have appeared in the first eleven volumes of Spectrum: The Best In Contemporary Fantastic Art. The show will open at the Museum of American Illustration September 7 and will run through October 1, 2005. The 200 piece Spectrum Exhibition will occupy both the of Museum's galleries. Some of the artists featured in the show include Frank Frazetta, Anita Kunz, Michael Whelan, Kinuko Y. Craft, James Bama, Ruth Sanderson, and John Jude Palencar.

13 July 2005
Harry Potter and the Legal Injunction
After a store sold fifteen copies of Harry Potter and the Half-Blood Prince by accident, an injunction was placed on the purchasers, forbidding them to talk about, copy, or even read the books prior to Saturday, July 16. The judge who issued the injunction instructed the purchasers to return the books to the store, in return for which they would each receive their book with a book plate autographed by J.K. Rowling.

Spectrum Adds Advisor, Announces Judges
Irene Gallo has become a member of the Spectrum Advisory Board. Spectrum: The Best In Contemporary Fantastic Art was established in 1993 with the intent of providing creators with a regular showcase for the best fantasy, science fiction, horror, and otherwise uncategorizable artwork created each year. Spectrum 12 will be published later this year. The judges for Spectrum 13 will include Julie Bell, Brom, Bruce Jensen, Chris Klein, Heidi MacDonald, and Stephan Martiniere.

Shuttle Launch Delayed
NASA announced the delay of the shuttle launched scheduled for July 13 shortly before launch time. This would have been the first launch in more than two and a half years since the Columbia broke up on reentry. The launch was scrubbed because of a faulty fuel sensor.

Actor Kevin Hagen (b.1928) died on July 9. Hagen was best known for his role as Doc Baker on "Little House on the Prairie," but he appeared in other westerns as well. His genre roles included the recurring role as Kobick on "Land of the Giants" and as Rob Wellan on "Amazing Stories." He played multiple roles on "The Time Tunnel" and "Voyage to the Bottom of the Sea."

Fan Linda Ann Moss died on July 12. Moss was active in APA fandom.

11 July 2005
Sturgeon and Campbell Award Winners
The results for the John W. Campbell, Jr. Memorial award for best science fiction novel and the Theodore Sturgeon Memorial Award for best short fiction were announced July 8 at the University of Kansas. Administrator Christopher McKitterick announced that the 2006 Weekend may include inductions in a new Fantasy Hall of Fame. Until last year, the inductions in the Science Fiction Hall of Fame were held at the same time, but this year, the SF HoF has moved to the Science Fiction Museum in Seattle.
John W. Campbell Memorial Award: Market Forces, by Richard K. Morgan
Theodore Sturgeon Memorial Award: "Sergeant Chip" by Bradley Denton

Rhysling Award
The 2005 Rhysling Awards for achievement in speculative poetry were presented Saturday, July 9, 2005 at Readercon in Burlington MA. There are two categories: Short Poem (up to 49 lines long) and Long Poem (50 lines and over).
Short Poem Category: "No Ruined Lunar City," by Greg Beatty
Long Poem Category: "Soul Searching," by Tim Pratt
The Science Fiction Poetry Association Grand Master Award: Robert Frazier.

SESFA Awards
The Southeastern Science Fiction Association presented its annual awards. Voted on by fans, the awards are given to authors who have a tie to the Southeastern United States.
Lifetime Achievement: Nelson S. Bond
Best Novel of 2004: Camouflage, by Joe Haldeman
Best Short Fiction of 2004: "Faces," by Joe Haldeman

Fan Art Rapp (b.1924) died on March 24. One of the early members of SAPS, he served as the APA's OE twice, in from its tenth to twelfth issue and again from 1983-1985. He was the editor of the fanzine Spacewarp, publishing more than forty issues from 1947-1950. He turned it over to F. Towner Laney and Charles Burbee for two issues while he served in Korea and eventually published 204 issues before he ceased publication in the 1990s. Rapp had been suffering from Alzheimer's.

Author Evan Hunter (b.1926) died on July 6 of cancer of the larynx. Although best known for his mysteries and screenplays, Hunter also wrote science fiction novels early in his career. Hunter was known by a variety of pseudonyms, perhaps Ed McBain being the best known. He was born Salvatore Lombino, but changed his name in 1952.

Packager Byron Preiss (b.1953) died on July 9 in a car accident while returning from synagogue. Through his Byron Preiss Visual Publications, Preiss assembled a wide variety of fiction and nonfiction titles, but until recently he was not a publisher. His recent into publishing, ibooks, has reprinted a lot of science fiction, as well as best of series for both fantasy and science fiction.

5 July 2005
Collision With Comet
The NASA Deep Impact probe made contact with comet Tempel 1 on Sunday, July 3. The probe formed a crater on the comet's surface causing plumes of gas to be released. Scientists have not yet gotten visual confirmation of the crater because of dust released by the collision, but shadows indicate the crater was formed. In the aftermath of the collision, a Russian astrologer has filed a lawsuit claiming that NASA has ruined "the natural balance of forces in the universe" and will deform her predictions.

Earlier Human Habitation
Scientists working at an ancient lake near Puebla, Mexico have discovered a series of human footprints believed to be more than 38,000 years old. Previous claims were that humans moved to North America only 11,000 years ago. The scientists, led by Silvia Gonzalez of Liverpool John Moores University in the UK discovered the prints in 2003 and spent two years applying standard methods for dating the prints, which remain in situ.

Author Chris Bunch (b.1943) died on July 4. Bunch was a Viet Nam veteran. During the war, he served as both a patrol commander and a correspondent for Stars and Stripes. Continuing as a journalist after the war, he also wrote several novels in collaboration with Allan Cole as well as solo ventures. He has written the Seer King series, the Sten series (with Cole) and The Last Legion series. His novel The Dogs from Hell is scheduled for an August publication.

3 July 2005
Locus Awards
The Locus Awards were announced at Westercon Due North in Calgary on July 2. Unlike previous years, this year Locus announced a short list in each category prior to Westercon weekend. The awards are selected by a poll of Locus readers.
Best SF Novel: The Baroque Cycle (The Confusion and The System of the World), by Neal Stephenson
Best Fantasy Novel: Iron Council, by China Miéville
Best First Novel: Jonathan Strange & Mr. Norrell, by Susanna Clarke
Best YA Book: A Hat Full of Sky, by Terry Pratchett
Best Novella: "Golden City Far", by Gene Wolfe
Best Novelette (tie): "Reports of Certain Events in London", China Mieville & "The Faery Handbag", Kelly Link
Best Short Story: "Forbidden Brides of the Faceless Slaves in the Nameless House of the Night of Dread Desire", Neil Gaiman
Best Anthology: The Year's Best Science Fiction: Twenty-First Annual Collection, Gardner Dozois (ed.)
Best Collection: The John Varley Reader, John Varley
Best Non-Fiction Book: The Wave in the Mind, Ursula K. Le Guin
Editor: Ellen Datlow
Magazine: The Magazine Of Fantasy & Science Fiction
Book Publisher: Tor
Artist: Michael Whelan

Westercon Site Selected
The 2007 Westercon will be held in San Jose, California. Westercon Gnomeward Bound will take place from July 6-9. The guests of honor will include Tad Williams, Teresa Mather, and Christian McGuire. San Jose was running unopposed in this year's balloting after Portland dropped out in June. This is the second San Jose Westercon, the first being held in 1983. The business meeting also approved a division of the Westercon zone into three areas, North, Central and South. The area which hosts the site selection voting is initially ineligible for the year in which the voting is taking place although it would become eligible if there is no bid from either of the other two areas by the end of the year. The 2006 Westercon will take place in San Diego from July 1-4.

2 July 2005
The Aurora Awards
The Aurora Awards, the Canadian Science Fiction Awards presented for works in both English and French, were presented at Westercon/Canvention in Calgary on July 1. The awards are selected by the fans and voted on using the Australian rules ballot, similar to the method used to determine the Hugo winners.
Best Long-Form Work in English/Meilleur livre en anglais: Wolf Pack, by Edo van Belkom
Meilleur livre en français/Best Long-Form Work in French: Les Mémoires de l'Arc, by Michèle Laframboise
Best Short-Form Work in English/Meilleure nouvelle en anglais: "When the Morning Stars Sang Together," by Isaac Szpindel
Meilleure nouvelle en français/Best Short-Form Work in French: "Ceux qui ne comptent pas," by Michèle Laframboise
Best Work in English (Other)/Meilleur ouvrage en anglais (Autre): Relativity: Essays and Stories, by Robert J. Sawyer
Meilleur ouvrage en français (Autre)/Best Work in French (Other): Dû au manque de nominations, aucun prix ne sera décerné dans cette categorie.
Artistic Achievement/Accomplissement artistique: Martin Springett
Fan Achievement (Publication)/Accomplissement fanique (Publication): Opuntia, Dale Speirs, ed.
Fan Achievement (Organizational)/Accomplissement fanique (Organisation): Brian Upward
Fan Achievement (Other)/Accomplissement fanique (autre) Karen Linsley, filksinging

1 July 2005
Bookstore Closing
Wrigley-Cross Books in Portland, Oregon has announced that after fifteen year it will close its physical store in September. Wrigley-Cross will still operate as a catalog, internet and mail order business as well as selling from the owners' house.

Magazines Recognized
The newly refounded literary magazine Argosy has been included in Library Journal's list of the best magazines of 2004. Only two literary magazines made the list, Argosy and Backwards City Review. The complete list includes:
All You
Backwards City Review
Cottage Living
Life & Style Weekly
Mobile Magazine
SHOP, Etc.

Shuttle Launch Date
NASA has announced July 13 as the date for the launch of Discovery. This will be the first shuttle launch since the space shuttle Columbia disintegrated over Texas during its return to Earth on February 1, 2003. Despite the decision, a recent report states that NASA has failed to meet three of the fifteen safety recommendations made following the Columbia accident.

Copyright © 2005 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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