By Michael J. “Orange Mike” Lowrey: Long-time Milwaukee SF fan Suzanne Alles “Sue” Blom, author of the excellent alternate history novel Inca: The Scarlet Fringe (Tor, 2001) [and unsold sequel(s)], died at approximately 5:30 p.m. June 23 from complications of intestinal cancer. “She had friends around her talking politics when she just slipped away.”
Formerly a student of ancient history in Iowa, Sue came to Milwaukee as a VISTA volunteer, working for the local tenants’ union, and ended up staying here. She became a tax preparer, helping people “keep the tax man away from the door,” and has been a mainstay of Milwaukee progressive politics behind the scenes, as well as an active member of the Wisconsin fannish community.
Due to insufficient sales of the first volume, she was unable to find a publisher for the planned sequel(s) to Inca; but it garnered her more than one person’s nomination for the John W. Campbell Award for Best New Writer (although she’d had a novelette, “In Memory of Prince Edward”, in the April 1993 issue of Tomorrow Speculative Fiction). Sue was also the co-creator of the Verdant Lore Tarot, a plant-centered tarot deck.