The Science Fiction and Fantasy Writers of America has named Jane Yolen the 33rd Damon Knight Grand Master for her contributions to the literature of science fiction and fantasy.
The award is given by SFWA for “lifetime achievement in science fiction and/or fantasy.” Jane Yolen joins the Grand Master ranks alongside such legends as Ray Bradbury, Anne McCaffrey, Ursula K. LeGuin, Isaac Asimov, and Joe Haldeman.
SFWA President Cat Rambo commented: “Jane Yolen, who has written fantasy and science fiction for ages up and down the range of possibilities, epitomizes what a Grand Master should be. Her 350 books, multiple awards, and overall high standard of prose and storytelling make her one of the treasures of fantasy and science fiction.“
Yolen’s acknowledgement reads: “To know I am now on the same list as Isaac Asimov, Andre Norton, and Ursula Le Guin is the kind of shock to the system that makes me want to write better each day. Revise, revision, and reinvent.”
The award will be presented at the 52nd Annual Nebula Conference and Awards Ceremony in Pittsburgh, PA, May 18-21, 2017.
Jane Yolen published her first novel, Pirates in Petticoats on her 22nd birthday. Since then, Yolen has published novels for juvenile, young adult and adult readers, as well as short fiction, picture books, and poetry. In addition to being a prolific author, Yolen has edited several anthologies. Many of Yolen’s works fall into the fairy tale category and Newsweek has dubbed her, “America’s Hans Christian Andersen.”
Yolen is perhaps best known for her young adult and juvenile books, including the popular “How do Dinosaurs” series. Her short fiction has been collected in more than a dozen collections. She edited three volumes of the Xanadu anthology series, collections of modern folk tales, and The Year’s Best Science Fiction and Fantasy for Teens.
In 1986, her short story “Sister Emily’s Lightship” received a Nebula Award, as did her novelette “Lost Girls” in 1997. Yolen has also won three Mythopoeic Awards for Cards of Grief, Briar Rose, and The Young Merlin Trilogy. She has won the World Fantasy Award for editing Favorite Folktales from Around the World and later received a Lifetime Achievement Award from that same body.
For more on Jane Yolen, please visit a very special SFWA Youtube curated playlist.