When the three-day Eaton Conference begins today, February 11, in Riverside, California it will go on without one of its signature moments. Harlan Ellison had been scheduled to appear in person to receive the 2011 J. Lloyd Eaton Lifetime Achievement Award in Science Fiction. However, on February 9 Harlan posted an apology on his website because he was physically unable to attend:
I apologize to everyone expecting to see me at the Eaton Conference this weekend. I have been bedridden for two days, and I have no energy. I called and cancelled this morning. It was my intention to man-up for the presentation of the award, but now Steve Barber has been gracious enough to accept for me. It is an honor and I am pleased to have been chosen alongside Chip Delany. But both of us has aged, and neither of us will be there in more than devoted spirit. I am unwell, do not wish to repeat the deathtalk that preceded the Madcon, am tired, very tired…and I am, well, simply, sorry not to have been able to accomodate those who wanted to see me.
Harlan’s presence will still be felt, in an alternate way, when the Ellison documentary Dreams with Sharp Teeth screens at UC Riverside’s Culver Center on Saturday, February 12 at 7 p.m.
[Thanks to Andrew Porter for the story.]