Peter S. Beagle Named SFWA Damon Knight Grand Master

Peter S. Beagle

The Science Fiction and Fantasy Writers of America (SFWA) has selected Peter S. Beagle as the 34th Damon Knight Grand Master for his contributions to the literature of Science Fiction and Fantasy.

The Damon Knight Memorial Grand Master Award is given by SFWA for “lifetime achievement in science fiction and/or fantasy.” Beagle joins the Grand Master ranks alongside such legends as C. J. Cherryh, Anne McCaffrey, Ursula K. LeGuin, Isaac Asimov, Ray Bradbury, and Joe Haldeman. The award will be presented at the 52nd Annual Nebula Awards Weekend in Pittsburgh, PA, May 17-20, 2018.

Beagle, best-known for his novel The Last Unicorn, and has also explored our fascination with the mythical in The Innkeeper’s Song, A Fine and Private Place, and a wide variety of short fiction. Beagle won the Hugo and the Nebula Award for his 2005 novelette “Two Hearts.” He has won the Mythopoeic Award for his novels The Folk of the Air and Tamsin. He was nominated for a Hugo for his adaptation of J.R.R. Tolkien’s The Lord of the Rings for Ralph Bakshi’s animated version and wrote the screenplay for the Star Trek: The Next Generation episode “Sarek.”

SFWA President Cat Rambo said:

Peter Beagle’s work has been the gateway for multitudes of fantasy readers, but also writers as well, including myself. His work shines a light on the human heart and its beauties even when that heart is flawed and wanting, showing how that beauty arises from such imperfect conditions. Beagle unquestionably belongs among the greats, and I count it a privilege to invite him to be the next SFWA Damon Knight Memorial Grand Master.

The Nebula Awards will be presented during the annual SFWA Nebula Conference, which will run from May 17-20.

On May 20, a mass autograph session will take place at the Pittsburgh Marriott City Center and is open to the public. For more information on the conference, including a link to register, visit

In addition to the Nebula Awards, SFWA will present the Bradbury Award for Outstanding Dramatic Presentation, the Andre Norton Award for Outstanding Young Adult Science Fiction or Fantasy Book, the Kate Wilhelm Solstice Award, the Kevin O’Donnell, Jr. Service to SFWA Award, and the Damon Knight Memorial Grand Master Award.

[Based on the press release.]

24 thoughts on “Peter S. Beagle Named SFWA Damon Knight Grand Master

  1. Massively deserved. I was going to say “Wow! SFWA finally recognizes an all-fantasy author!”, but I’d forgotten Jane Yolen was recognized just last year.

    A note in case Cat is looking: ISTM that it should be easier to find the list of Grand Masters on the website (or at least in the release); searching mostly gets PR, and I don’t see a pick under any of the tabs. Maybe it’s just me….

  2. OMG I am so glad I don’t have to worry any more that I am going to let it slip out of sheer excitement and delight. One of the few perks of this role is the chance to tell the new recipient and I was aflutter with happiness when making that call, particularly because it surprised him.

    I believe he will be at the Nebulas and signing; for people who can make it, the weekend is a lovely one, and it’s open to the public. If you’re in the Pittsburgh area mid-May, the Friday night autographing will feature close to a hundred authors, many of them other SFWA Grand Masters, past Nebula winners and nominees, and other distinguished folk. 🙂

    @Chip – Thank you, I will definitely pass that along.

  3. Although Cat refers to the Friday night signing at the Nebulas, this year, we’ll be changing things up and we are planning on holding the mass signing on Sunday. Our hope is that it will mean more people can make it without having to fight Friday evening traffic.

  4. One of the other things we’re doing this year that I am pleased for is having an event to celebrate the partners and spouses, with Gaye Haldeman hosting. 🙂

  5. “One of the other things we’re doing this year that I am pleased for is having an event to celebrate the partners and spouses, with Gaye Haldeman hosting.”

    That’s Gay Haldeman.

  6. About damned time. One of the best writers period, screw the genres. My first introduction to him was “I See By My Outfit”, a book I treasure to this day.

  7. My first introduction to him was “I See By My Outfit”, a book I treasure to this day.

    Me too. Great book.

  8. My introduction to him was “A Fine And Private Place”, which was given to me as a gift from a girlfriend. The relationship didn’t work out, but I still have that book and consider it the most thoughtful thing she ever gave me.

  9. Jo says The Last Unicorn was a lovely novel.

    It is. Is anyone interested in seeing the short film made about It? If so, I’ll enquire with the producer as to its status now.

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