Nebula Award Nominees

Science Fiction and Fantasy Writers of America has announced the nominees for the 2010 Nebula Awards.

Novel

  • The Native Star, M.K. Hobson (Spectra)
  • The Hundred Thousand Kingdoms, N.K. Jemisin (Orbit UK; Orbit US)
  • Shades of Milk and Honey, Mary Robinette Kowal (Tor)
  • Echo, Jack McDevitt (Ace)
  • Who Fears Death, Nnedi Okorafor (DAW)
  • Blackout/All Clear, Connie Willis (Spectra)

 

Novella

  • The Alchemist, Paolo Bacigalupi (AudibleSubterranean)
  • ‘‘Iron Shoes’’, J. Kathleen Cheney (Alembical 2)
  • The Lifecycle of Software Objects, Ted Chiang (Subterranean)
  • ‘‘The Sultan of the Clouds’’, Geoffrey A. Landis (Asimov’s Science Fiction Magazine 9/10)
  • ‘‘Ghosts Doing the Orange Dance’’, Paul Park (The Magazine of Fantasy and Science Fiction 1-2/10)
  • ‘‘The Lady Who Plucked Red Flowers beneath the Queen’s Window’’, Rachel Swirsky (Subterranean Magazine Summer ’10)

 

Novelette

  • ‘‘Map of Seventeen’’, Christopher Barzak (The Beastly Bride)
  • ‘‘The Jaguar House, in Shadow’’, Aliette de Bodard (Asimov’s Science Fiction Magazine 7/10)
  • ‘‘The Fortuitous Meeting of Gerard van Oost and Oludara’’, Christopher Kastensmidt (Realms of Fantasy 4/10)
  • “Plus or Minus’’, James Patrick Kelly (Asimov’s Science Fiction Magazine12/10)
  • ‘‘Pishaach’’, Shweta Narayan (The Beastly Bride)
  • ‘‘That Leviathan, Whom Thou Hast Made’’, Eric James Stone (Analog Science Fiction and Fact 9/10)
  • ‘‘Stone Wall Truth’’, Caroline M. Yoachim (Asimov’s Science Fiction Magazine 2/10)

 

Short Story

  • ‘‘Arvies’’, Adam-Troy Castro (Lightspeed Magazine 8/10)
  • ‘‘How Interesting: A Tiny Man’’, Harlan Ellison® (Realms of Fantasy 2/10)
  • ‘‘Ponies’’, Kij Johnson (Tor.com 1/17/10)
  • ‘‘I’m Alive, I Love You, I’ll See You in Reno’’, Vylar Kaftan (Lightspeed Magazine 6/10)
  • ‘‘The Green Book’’, Amal El-Mohtar (Apex Magazine 11/1/10)
  • ‘‘Ghosts of New York’’, Jennifer Pelland (Dark Faith)
  • ‘‘Conditional Love’’, Felicity Shoulders (Asimov’s Science Fiction Magazine 1/10)

 

The Ray Bradbury Award for Outstanding Dramatic Presentation 

  • Despicable Me, Pierre Coffin & Chris Renaud (directors), Ken Daurio & Cinco Paul (screenplay), Sergio Pablos (story) (Illumination Entertainment)
  • Doctor Who: ‘‘Vincent and the Doctor’’, Richard Curtis (writer), Jonny Campbell (director)
  • How to Train Your Dragon, Dean DeBlois & Chris Sanders (directors), William Davies, Dean DeBlois, & Chris Sanders (screenplay) (DreamWorks Animation)
  • Inception, Christopher Nolan (director), Christopher Nolan (screenplay) (Warner)
  • Scott Pilgrim vs. the World, Edgar Wright (director), Michael Bacall & Edgar Wright (screenplay) (Universal)
  • Toy Story 3, Lee Unkrich (director), Michael Arndt (screenplay), John Lasseter, Andrew Stanton, & Lee Unkrich (story) (Pixar/Disney)

 

Andre Norton Award for Young Adult Science Fiction and Fantasy

  • Ship Breaker, Paolo Bacigalupi (Little, Brown)
  • White Cat, Holly Black (McElderry)
  • Mockingjay, Suzanne Collins (Scholastic Press; Scholastic UK)
  • Hereville: How Mirka Got Her Sword, Barry Deutsch (Amulet)
  • The Boy from Ilysies, Pearl North (Tor Teen)
  • I Shall Wear Midnight, Terry Pratchett (Gollancz; Harper)
  • A Conspiracy of Kings, Megan Whalen Turner (Greenwillow)
  • Behemoth, Scott Westerfeld (Simon Pulse; Simon & Schuster UK)

The full press release follows the jump.
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Marlowe by Hamit

The text of Francis Hamit’s 1988 stage play Marlowe: An Elizabethan Tragedy has been out of print for ages. I’ve never read it because a copy, if it can be found, runs about $140.

That will soon change because Hamit plans to put the play up on Kindle, then in a print-on-demand edition.  He adds:

The cover illustration is a 16th century painting thought to be a portrait of Marlowe.  The type was designed by George Mattingly of George Mattingly Design, one of my oldest friends. We will be using this public domain image on a lot of things.

And that’s not all!

The screenplay for “MARLOWE: An Elizabethan Tragedy” will be published as a trade paperback for about $20.00. If you want a signed copy of an actual screenplay we will also send you one for $50.00 plus $5.00 shipping and handling (California residents should add $4.25 for state sales tax.) The screenplay is about 120 pages and 8 1/2 by 11 inches. It is not a shooting script, but a first draft with 47 master scenes. The paperback will be available next month and will have an ISBN so you can order it from bookstores. Send an email if you want a script copy. It’s a real collectible.

For a script copy send a check or money order for $55.00 (plus any sales tax) to Brass Cannon Books, P.O. Box 5499, Pine Mountain Club, CA 93222-5499. It will be sent Priority Mail (USA Only). Orders from other nations require us to charge different prices for postage, so please e-mail us first.

The script copy can also be ordered through Brass Cannon Books Facebook page (they’ve very quietly rolled out a shopping cart function) with a special price if they hit the “like” button for that page and we will also accept orders by PayPal at BrassCannonBks@earthlink.net.

They can also use the Facebook shopping cart and “like” button on the Facebook page for “The Shenandoah Spy”

And Brass Cannon Books is also sponsoring book club meetings on Meetup.com and offering a special “Perk” for their members — 16 book clubs so far with over 1,600 members.

This social networking stuff may have a future after all.

As for the film, we are working towards some formal announcements in the near future.

Thanks, I Guess

FANZINES: The DIY Revolution (Chronicle, paper, $40) by Teal Triggs is one of three books Steven Heller covers in his New York Times review “Irreverence You Can Almost Touch”.

Heller’s review has drawn fannish attention because it quotes Triggs giving proper credit for the fannish origin of the word “fanzines” in the Times’ hallowed pages:

Fanzines are extremely diverse and intensely personal — some filled with rant, some with reason — and their adherents use the form much like a blog, to communicate and interact with like-minded people. “The term ‘fanzine,’ ” Triggs explains, “is the conflation of ‘fan’ and ‘magazine,’ and was coined by the American sci-fi enthusiast and zine producer Louis Russell Chauvenet in 1940 in his hectographed fanzine Detours . . . when he declared his preference for the term ‘fanzine’ rather than ‘fanmag.’ ”

But gratifying as that may be, Heller otherwise gives 100% of his attention to zines devoted to rock music, comics, fashion and politics – significant to him products of a counter-cultural underground. I feel as if all those decades when fanzines were the torchbearers of sf fandom, and that alone, got shoved aside and wonder how long it will take for this view of fanzine history to imprint itself on the curators of the several university library fanzine collections founded over the past few years?

[Thanks to Moshe Feder and Gary Farber for the link.]

Joe Haldeman Doing Well

Joe Haldeman ate his first solid food on February 20, three days after ileostomy take-down surgery.

Gay Haldeman’s latest SFF.net post said he may go home from the hospital soon:

Joe ate his first solid food today, just a few bites, but it tasted good he said. They say they’ll send him home tomorrow, but we’ll believe that when we see it. The nurse reminded him that though he has small scars, a lot of cutting was done inside. He said, “I’ll just tell people even though I look good they should feel sorry for me.”

Snapshots 59 th Street Bridge Song

Here are 11 groovy developments of interest to fans:

(1) Shouldn’t high school guidance counselors update their battery of aptitude tests to include  “Which Star Wars Occupation Is Meant for You?”

This simple (for some values of simple) flowchart leads to such glorious career choices as Sith Apprentice, Ewok Chief, Bounty Hunter, Jedi Knight, Death Star Laser Operator, and Jabba’s Slave Girl.

(2) I see in National Geographic that “Orangutans May Be Closest Human Relatives, Not Chimps”:

John Grehan, of the Buffalo Museum of Science in New York State, and Jeffrey Schwartz, of the University of Pittsburgh in Pennsylvania, say that the DNA evidence cited by many scientists only looks at a small percentage of the human and chimp genomes.

What’s more, the genetic similarities likely include many ancient DNA traits that are shared across a much broader group of animals.

By contrast, humans share at least 28 unique physical characteristics with orangutans but only 2 with chimps and 7 with gorillas, the authors say.

Until now I thought the closest relatives of human beings were mundanes. Right turn, Clyde!

(3) Those ancient shared DNA traits lead to all kinds of possibilities, you know. Japanese researchers will soon use cloning technology in an attempt to resurrect the long-extinct mammoth:

The researchers will try to revive the species by obtaining tissue this summer from the carcass of a mammoth preserved in a Russian research laboratory, the Yomiuri Shimbun reported.

Under the plan, the nuclei of mammoth cells will be inserted into an elephant’s egg cell from which the nuclei have been removed, to create an embryo containing mammoth genes, the report said.

(4) Since the beginning of the 20th Century Popular Mechanics has been predicting our technological future, sometimes with more enthusiasm than accuracy. In The Wonderful Future That Never Was, curated by Gregory Benford (published last October), these predictions, both brilliant and dubious, are remembered. The link leads to an extensive online exhibit of the magazine’s ever-changing vision of the future. 

An example from 1929 is the prediction future clothing will be made from Asbestos:

Dresses of asbestos that will be as lustrous as silk and will give long wear, with ease in cleaning, are predicted by an eastern scientist. Fabrics are already being made from trees and vegetables and the Romans made a sort of cloth from asbestos fibers centuries ago, so this prophecy is considered entirely reasonable by experts…

Experts from companies with paid-up product liability insurance policies, I trust.

(5) Taral recently discovered Qwiki — “What Twitter is to Wikipedia, I gather.” The page with his name on it — http://www.qwiki.com/q/#!/Taral_Wayne — briefly summarizes the same information about him posted at Wikipedia. Perhaps the only reason to click the link is so you can listen the computer-generated voice read the content aloud. Taral says, “Amusingly, the voice can’t pronounce ‘Rotsler Award.’ It comes out more like ‘Ricksler’ or ‘Rickler.’” 

(6) It’s not like you needed an excuse to drink beer at this year’s Worldcon, but here’s a good one: Reno is #5 on the list of worst drinking water quality of major US cities for which the water quality information is available.

(7) Discoveries by NASA’s Kepler telescope include a planetary system they’re nick-naming “Discworlds” because of the flatness of its ecliptic plane.

Jack Lissauer, planetary scientist and a Kepler science team member, said: “The Kepler-11 planetary system is amazing. It’s amazingly compact, it’s amazingly flat, there’s an amazingly large number of big planets orbiting close to their star – we didn’t know such systems could even exist.”

(8) “Any Sufficiently Advanced Technology is Indistinguishable From Magic– An Exhibition by Janos Stone,” an art exhibit in DUMBO, Brooklyn, gives Clarke the credit he is due for its title.  
 
(9) These fascinating hand-drawn maps show that the Anglo Saxon language remains alive in the names of London suburbs and neighboring towns:

Look around any map of London and you’ll find the echoes of long-forgotten individuals. Cena, Padda, Fulla… ancient farmers who had no idea their names would live on down the centuries as Kennington, Paddington and Fulham.

Could the dairyman whose cheese farm (Ces wican) once graced the banks of the Thames have conceived that his humble business would live forever as Chiswick? People of Croydon: whatever happened to the valley of crocuses (Crogdene) after which your town is named. And who knew that the perennial football chant of ‘Wember-ley, Wember-ley, Wember-ley’ is actually pretty close to the area’s original name of Wemba Lea (Wemba’s forest clearing).

We’ve never seen these Anglo-Saxon hamlets and farms mapped out before, so we thought we’d give it a go. The period shown covers 500-1050 AD, between the retreat of the Romans and the coming of the Normans.

David Klaus points out that some of these ancient place names feature in the Doctor Who universe: “When the 4th Doctor dropped off Sara Jane Smith at the end of her time with him, she lived in Croydon, and of course 10th Doctor companion Donna Noble was ‘the best temp in Chiswick.’”

(10) As a young science fiction reader I assumed the writers made it all up. In time I discovered they made liberal use of all kinds of sources, for example, Poul Anderson drew heavily on the history of real empires in his space operas. Mel Gilden has written an entertaining essay about his own youthful preconceptions along this line:

Despite the stack of To Be Read books already on your night table, there may be some books you think of as The Ones That Got Away.

It’s true that in a world where online bookstores carry almost everything, it is rare that you cannot find the prize you’ve always wanted to read. But when I was a kid there were no online bookstores, and worse yet I had very little money to call my own…

I didn’t even look for [one] book I wanted to read because I didn’t think it existed. The book was Three Men In a BoatTo Say Nothing of the Dog by Jerome K. Jerome. Robert Heinlein mentioned it in his science fiction novel Have Spacesuit, Will Travel, but I was pretty sure that Heinlein had made it all up, particularly the author’s name.

(11) StarTrek.com has been running a 3-part interview with the franchise’s second most influential figure, “Rick Berman Looks Back at 18 Years of Trek.” (Part 2; Part 3.)

For years and years, you had a bust of Roddenberry – with a blindfold covering his eyes –on your desk at Paramount. Where is that bust right now and is the blindfold still on it?
Berman: I am looking at it as we speak. It’s in my (home) office and the same blindfold is on. I think the man who made the bust made two of them. He gave one to me and one to Gene. One day I was in a meeting with the writers and somebody – I forget who it was – took a little piece of cloth, like a ribbon that was wrapped around something, and put it over Gene’s eyes, like “God forbid he hear what’s going on in this room.” It was a joke, but it has been knotted around his eyes ever since.

[Thanks for the links in the post goes out to Andrew Porter, David Klaus, Gerry Williams, Steven H Silver, Taral Wayne, Paula Lieberman and Mel Gilden.]

2011 FAAn Award Voting Stats

Spike has provided an initial report about voting for the top finishers in this year’s Fanzine Activity Achievement Awards (FAAns). She adds, “I expect to post a fuller report to Corflu.org in the next couple of days.”

BEST FAN WRITER (53 nominees) 
*Roy Kettle* 72 
Claire Brialey 61 
Mark Plummer 56 
James Bacon 51 
Taral Wayne 38 
 
BEST FAN ARTIST (31 nominees) 
*Steve Stiles* 115 
Dan Steffan 100 
D West 74 
Brad Foster 52 
Harry Bell 31 
 
BEST FANZINE (40 nominees) 
*Trapdoor (Robert Lichtman)* 100 
Banana Wings (Claire Brialey & Mark Plummer) 87 
Chunga (Randy Byers, Andy Hooper, carl juarez) 54 
Challenger (Guy Lillian III) 37 
Sense of Wonder Stories (Rich Coad) 37 
 
BEST FAN WEBSITE (22 nominees) 
*eFanzines.com* 140 
Ansible – www.ansible.co.uk 32 
file770.com 29 
Fanac Fanhistory Project – www.fanac.org 26 
fiawol.org.uk/FanStuff/ 25 
 
Harry Warner, Jr., Memorial Award for 
BEST FAN CORRESPONDENT
(46 nominees) 
*Robert Lichtman* 78 
Lloyd Penney 43 
Jerry Kaufman 40 
Mike Meara 39 
Claire Brialey 31 
 
47 people voted: Andy Hooper, Audrey Trend, Barbara Johnson-Haddad, Bill Burns, Bob Sabella, Bruce Townley, Chris Garcia, Claire Brialey, Colin Hinz, Curt Phillips, Dave Hicks, Dave Locke, Eric Mayer, G T Trend, Greg Benford, Guy Lillian, Ian Maule, Jack Calvert, James Bacon, Jay Kinney, Jim Linwood, John Hertz, John Nielsen Hall, Katrina Templeton, Kim Huett, Lenny Bailes, Lloyd Penney, Mark Plummer, Mike Deckinger, Mike McInerney, Mike Meara, Murray Moore, Nic Farey, Pamela Boal, Pat Charnock, Randy Byers, Rich Coad, Rob Jackson, Robert Lichtman, Roy Kettle, Sandra Bond, Spike, Steve Stiles, Taral Wayne, Ulrika O’Brien, William Wright, Yvonne Penney.

[Thanks to Spike, Past President, fwa for the story.]

Update 02/21/2011: Spike’s full report is now available here [PDF file].

Joe Haldeman Has Surgery

Joe Haldeman went in for scheduled ileostomy take-down surgery on February 17, to reconnect his intestines following the surgery he had in September of 2009.

Gay Haldeman reported in a post on SFF.net that the surgeon did a laparoscopic procedure, so they wouldn’t have to make a huge incision. As of February 18 Joe was still in Intensive Care, but he would probably be moved to a regular room on Saturday:

He’s still not allowed to eat or drink, but is up in a chair and has walked some. Most tubes have been removed. They were bothering him more than anything else. Now he says he feels like he’s been knifed in the abdomen, which he has.

Marty Cantor’s Corflu Report

backsides

The backsides of great fanzine fans. A rare view, rather like that famous photo of Churchill.

THE ANNUAL FANZINE FANS’ GET-TOGETHER
The 2011 Corflu in Sunnyvale, California
by Marty Cantor

For a hot-house plant like me, even Los Angeles can be cold in February. But a sweater, jacket, overcoat, gloves, and a hat can take care of that whilst the interior of the car warms up. Even over the Grapevine, that gateway to a fast drive on the I-5 north from Los Angeles to the Bay Area. Or, to be more accurate, to Sunnyvale, in the heart of Silicon Valley.

Even in Buttonwillow, 100 miles north of my North Hollywood starting point, where I stopped to put gas into my car, and thence to grab a bite to eat in the rest stop just north of that burg, the cold was barely tolerable when I removed my gloves to remove money from my wallet to pay for the fuel at the gas station and to hold the sandwich I consumed at the rest stop.

But what really warmed me up was the listening to some of my favourite music on my way north. CD players built into automobiles are a boon for people like me, people who like music at least a bit out of the mainstream.

See, I started out listening to two CDs of the secular music from the Renaissance, wonderful sounds from 400+ years in the past. I then moved up 200 years and listened to a CD of Ludwig von Beethoven’s overtures – and then got all modern listening to Catulli Carmina and Trionfo Di Afrodite by Carl Orff, modern music only 100 years old. I was listening to Orff’s Carmina Burana when I pulled into the parking lot of the Domain Hotel in Sunnyvale, the venue for this year’s Corflu, a con celebrating a part of science fiction fandom which started in the 1930s and sometimes feels like it has barely left that time despite the embrace of modern zine-creating technology.

And almost the first thing I did after registering at the hotel and moving things to my room was to take three other con-goers in my car and drive to the Winchester Mystery House for a tour of same. This weird and wonderful 160-room, Victorian mansion which was continuously a-building for 38 years (until the owner died) seemed a fitting start to a con dedicated to the ideals of what started our hobby. (Unfortunately, we were not allowed to take photographs of any parts of the interiors of the mansion but photos aimed outward from porches and balconies were apparently not forbidden – and I shot some from those viewpoints.) Fandom does, of course, adapt to the new technology to continue producing fanzines, usually much easier to create than it was in bygone days; and, sometimes even showing better repro and other technical niceties.

This Corflu’s concom, though, tech-savvy as they were, did not keep their web site updated, so it was a decided shock to see some people show up who were not listed as members. Make that a “pleasant shock” in many cases, as non-listed Pat Virzi walked into the hotel lobby, and the totally unexpected appearance, walking down a hotel corridor, of Victor Gonzalez (with his wife, Tamara). Out of the past walked Gary Farber – or so it seemed at the time as I do not think that I had seen Gary since the 1984 Worldcon in Los Angeles. And, even though the day before I had been posting on an e-list where Graham Charnock was sending messages from London, England, awaiting the birth of his first grandchild, there he was in the hotel bar when I walked in.

One new person I met was Kat Templeton. On one or another of the e-lists I infest it had been mentioned that she was going to be producing a fanzine. I asked her about it and she told me it was half-finished. As, maybe, a spur to get her to do more fanzining, I handed her an envelope of Rotsler illos. I had used all of these illos during 2010 and I was originally going to give these to Earl Kemp for use in his on-line zine. But, with Earl not at the con this year, I saw no reason why I should not help a relative newcomer by giving her the Rotsler illos.

And one of those wonderful, unplanned happenings of cons are the totally unexpected connexions and meetings which spontaneously happen. I more or less slightly overslept on Saturday morning – but I was still the first person down for breakfast. I had just finished eating and was starting my second cup of coffee when Michael Dobson walked in and joined me. He told some interesting anecdotes about some people (non-fans) he knew in DC (where he lives) and we traded some anecdotes about Australia, a place we had both visited. At the time, I had been planning to take my second cup of coffee and walk up to my room and begin typing this con report on my computer, but it was really more interesting, talking to Michael, so I started working on this account about an hour later than planned. As cons are one of those things which are usually so interesting there is relatively no time during them to do any writing, the only time for typing is either before or just after breakfast for an early riser like me.

Friday night’s opening ceremonies were, well, opening-ceremony-like, with the only difference being me taking photographs with my brand-new camera. And, also, taking the microphone and announcing that I had copies of Len Moffatt’s fannish autobiography for sale, all proceeds to TAFF and DUFF. (A sudden weird thought – why is it always TAFF and DUFF rather than DUFF and TAFF? Probably it is because TAFF was here first rather than a more usual alphabetical listing. Still, some phrases always bother me because they are so backwards – like the phrase “back and forth”. I mean, how can one come back before one has gone forth? Et bloody silliness.)

As is the protocol at cons, at least for those of us who have been in fandom for awhile and who have attended some cons, almost more important than the usual official starting ceremonies are the individual greetings of those whom one has not seen since the last iteration of the con – especially at Corflus as this meeting of fanzine fans is often the only con attended by those of us who enjoy this part of fandom. Of particular enjoyment are the first meeting with fans with whom one has been corresponding in one or another milieu, often for some time, but with whom this is the first ever face-to-face meeting. such was the case in my meeting with Mike and Pat Meara, over from Old Blighty to experience the American iteration of Corflu and to see how it differs – if at all – from the English version of the con which they attended the previous year. Indeed, I met them almost as soon as I arrived at the con hotel. And they (along with Milt Stevens, the other Angeleno at the con) were my passengers as I drove them to the Winchester Mystery House, theoretically a 10-minute drive from the hotel – according to the map I downloaded before I left North Hollywood – but local traffic made that more than a bit of a joke. But get there we did, and I must say that we all enjoyed the tour of a house with cabinet doors which opened to blank walls, an outside door on a higher floor which opened up to open air and no stairs, a stairway up to a ceiling, a window in the floor, and many other strange constructions. Anybody interested in this over-large anomaly of a building can probably read about it in many places. Needless to say, joining with the British Sandra Bond and the three passengers she drove over from the hotel, we had a fascinating tour of this architectural pile.

After which we all returned to the hotel or went for a meal or did something before we went to the Opening Ceremonies. In my case, even though Milt and I shared a table in the hotel restaurant before going to the opening ceremonies, nothing much which happened on that Friday evening compared to the sensory overload of viewing the Winchester House. At the Opening Ceremonies I remember Carrie Root’s name being pulled from the box, therefore making her the Guest of Honour at this Corflu, but not all that much of what else happened at that event – except me making an announcement of the Len Moffatt autobiography which I had printed upon hearing of Len’s death. (This autobiography was a compilation of 9 episodes which Len wrote and which I had originally pubbed in nine different issues of my zine, NO AWARD (starting over 10 years ago).

Tired from all of this, I went to bed even earlier than usual. So, if anybody is interested in what I did at the room parties and such like at the con, please note that I am an early riser and rarely stay up until midnight at most cons. Indeed, even were I to stay up past midnight, I would be asleep anyway. A night person I am not – unless it is at the tail end of the night, as I awaken before sunup.

Programming at Corflus is always single track. Granted, there are not all that many people at these cons compared to, say, Worldcons, but these are all the sort of people with whom other fanzine fans love to hang around. And talk. And talk. And talk. So, even though whatever the programming at the con happens to be, tailored as it all is to the interests of fanzine fans, sometimes many of the attendees do not much bother the programming which is put on for their enjoyment/edification.

So be it.

This means that I missed the fannish trivia contest where four teams squared off to see which team knew the most useless information. The results, though: the Mike McInerny American team of John D Berry, Milt Stevens, and Gary Farber beat the Sandra Bond English team.
 
One item of interest was a slide presentation by Dave Hicks, a fanartist
brought to the con by the Corflu 50 group. Dave is a fanartist whose
artwork I would dearly love to showcase in any genzine I was putting
out. If I was putting one out …

In my case, I was only interested in the Fanzine Auction, put on at 8 on Saturday evening, given that I had brought items to auction off for DUFF. All of the items put up for bid at Corflu auctions are meant only for the support of various fannish charities, usually (and mostly) the various travel funds: TAFF, DUFF, GUFF, and the like. I have participated in fannish auctions before – as an auctioneer – and it turned out that this was to be no exception as Chris Garcia, the con chair, had not made arrangements for anybody else other than him to do the auctioning. As more and more fans straggled in from dinner, the auctioning got more spirited as more people began participating in the bidding. At the end of the scheduled hour, with only a few items left to auction, we called an end to the bidding so that those who had won items could pay for them and the next programme item could commence.

This was a fannish play, written by Andy Hooper. I always seem to enjoy reading them after the fact as I usually have conversations drag me away from the live productions – and this time was no different from the usual.

I went up to the con suite and got into some conversations, including a bit on the virtual con suite, a connexion to interested parties via the internet. This was most ably handled at the Corflu end by Kat Templeton.

Sunday morning saw Jack Calvert arriving for breakfast as I was going in for same. Yeah, I slightly overslept today, too. Jack is a member of LASFAPA, one of the two APAs I run, and he is also a member of Inthebar, the e-list founded by fan artist Harry Bell. As is all too common, I remember that Jack and I had a fine talk during breakfast, with me not remembering any of the details.

Sunday mornings at Corflus usually start slowly as the only scheduled programme item is the Banquet. Of course, eating food is only one of the things we do at the Banquet. The food at this Corflu’s Banquet was a brunch – in name, even though it was mostly breakfast food along with exceedingly spicy chili. Some of us who had already eaten breakfast at the hotel were slightly put out that essentially the same food for lunch. (An aside: a free, full breakfast was included in the price of our hotel rooms. Personally, I find that a wonderful change from the sweet roll and coffee combo called a free breakfast at some hotels. And, as a breakfast, it was very good.)

The food part of the Banquet was served in a room off the lobby of the hotel. So, when we finished our meal we moved to the room we used for Corflu functions, on a hallway in back of the elevators on the second floor. This is where the “business” of the con was then held. Starting with the nominations and voting for the Past President of FWA, Fanzine Writers of America. As explained by Ted White (who ran this part of the meeting), what the members of the con produce are fanzines, and whether drawn or typed, we are all writers, and no matter from whence we came, we are all Americans – at least for the purpose of FWA. And we always vote for last year’s President as there is never any current President of FWA. (Ted explained all this better than me but I was too busy taking photographs to write down any details.) Anyway, after some very spirited voting, Spike was voted Past President of FWA.

Then came the time for Spike to announce the winners of the FAAN Awards, with said Awards being carved on bronze plaques (by Tom Becker). First, though, there was a Special Lifetime Achievement Award given to Art Widner. Art got up to take the award and then sort of hesitated as he attempted to read the words on the plaque. Some wag – not me, this time – wondered, aloud, if the words on the plaque used Art’s spelling. Art mentioned something about them being in “dumb English.”

Below is a list of the FAAN Awards as voted on by fans:

Artist: Steve Stiles
Letterhack: Robert Lichtman
Fanzine: Robert Lichtman’s TRAP DOOR
Writer: Roy Kettle
Website: eFanzines.com

Carrie Root then gave her Guest of Honor speech; which, in her case, was a slide show of a visit with relatives and Andy Hooper to northern New Mexico. It was well received.
 
There was then a discussion of where Corflu would be held in 2012, with Ted White presenting a bid for Las Vegas as none of the Vegrants were able to appear at this year’s con. Many of us have good memories of the Corflus previously held in Vegas, so it was with good heart that Las Vegas was awarded the 2012 Corflu.

The end of the Banquet is traditionally the end of the programming at Corflu. The Con Suite will remain open until around midnight or so and there are still get-togethers and fannish food expeditions afterwards, but many people leave for home on Sunday afternoon and evening. Being theoretically retired – well, I run the apartment building in which I live as a supplement to my Social Security check – I usually stay at the hotel an additional night and start my drive home early Monday morning. As I did, this time, except I had the “pleasure” of having rain or drizzle as an accompaniment to my driving all the way south until I arrived at the Grapevine. From the beginning of my ascent into the mountains – and for the remainder of the day – the Sun was shining brightly. A fitting end to a fine con.

Widner goes forward

Art Widner rises to accept his Lifetime Achievement Award.

Art Widner deciphers his award plaque.

Seeking 2011 DUFF Candidates

The Down Under Fan Fund is looking for Australasian fans wanting to be the fund’s delegate to the 2011 Worldcon in Reno.

Nominations must be received by the administrators by midnight March 31. See eligibility requirements in the press release below.

Once the candidates are announced voting will continue until May 20, 2011.

When this news was posted online John Hertz called to give me three corrections. That’s why in this case I say — darn near the full text of the press release follows the jump.

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