Wednesday, July 15, 2009

Phyllis Gotlieb 1926-2009

A very sad postscript to my previous post about the Sunburst Award, named in honour of Canadian SF writer Phyllis Gotlieb. Phyllis passed away earlier today, at the age of 83. She was a talented writer, a generous mentor, a gracious lady. For many years Phyllis was Canadian science fiction. She will be terribly missed.

Friday, July 10, 2009

Sunburst Award short-list announced

Phyllis Gotlieb, the Grande Dame of Canadian science fiction, was one of the first native-born Canadians to publish contemporary speculative fiction. Her first novel Sunburst was released in 1964; now in her eighties, Phyllis continues to write and publish. An annual juried award, The Sunburst Award for Canadian Literature of the Fantastic, is named for Phyllis’ groundbreaking debut novel.

The award, which consists of a cash prize of $1,000 and a hand-crafted medallion incorporating the "Sunburst" logo, designed by Marcel Gagné. is based on excellence of writing; the jury
selects five short-listed works and one winner in each of the two categories, adult and young adult, representing the finest of Canadian fantastic literature published during the calendar year.

I came across Phyllis Gotlieb’s Sunburst over 40 years ago. It was the first science fiction novel I had ever read that was actually written by a Canadian – that in itself was exciting. And it was one of the first I had encountered in that male-dominated genre with a strong, engaging, entirely believable female protagonist. I fell in love with it from the very first pages.

Yesterday morning I was thrilled and immensely honoured to learn that my historical fantasy Wild Talent was one of five young adult titles shortlisted for the Sunburst Award. Thank you, Phyllis, for leading the way.

You can find all the details, and the list of other short-listed titles at the Sunburst website

Saturday, July 4, 2009

Summer Breeze Books

Congratulations and happy summer reading to Sonya Hucks, who won three speculative books by British Columbia authors in the recent IWOFA (Infinite Worlds of Fantasy Authors) Summer Breeze Scavenger Hunt. Sonya's prize books are In The Palace of Repose by Holly Phillips (Wildside Press) , Finding Creatures and Other Stories by C. June Wolf (Wattle & Daub Books) , and my Victorian historical fantasy Wild Talent: a Novel of the Supernatural (Thistledown Press)