Review!


Tangent Short Fiction Review had this to say:

“Paid in Full” by Susan Forest tells of two um…bug farmers on another world, and the giant gnats which, depending on their kind (Dark/good or White/bad), lay eggs which are nourished by the aphids and then sold, or are the rogue and deadly variety which appear at dark and kill everything they can in their feeding frenzy. One of the farmers has hit hard times and asks a favor of the other, who is forever repaying the former for a long ago debt. But now the debt has been repaid in full, and the first farmer is still extremely ungrateful (his friend has just saved his life). The story is a lesson in learning when to let go of a debt repaid when one learns that one is being taken advantage of. The gnat/aphid symbiosis, and how the eventual product is processed for profit is entertaining, as is the scene of the night terror a swarm of the deadly, blood-sucking White gnats wreaks on the terrified farmers.

Nominations and Eligible Stories


Hope springs eternal! Although my story, “Immunity” (Asimov’s, 2006) did not get nominated for an Aurora Award, my good friend, Hayden Trenholm’s story, “Lumen Essence” did, and two good friends (Rob Sawyer for Best Short Form Work in English for “Biding Time” and Randy McCharles for “Best Fan – Organizational”) WON! Congratulations to all three!

Aurora awards for 2007 are upcoming much earlier this year. Instead of a fall award (2006’s awards were presented in October of 2007) Auroras will be presented in the spring (2007 awards will be presented at Keycon in Winnipeg, Manitoba the weekend of May 16-19, 2008). Hence the deadline for entering nominations is March 17, 2008. Simply put, the works with the most nominations wind up on the ballot. This year the form is MUCH easier, as you can enter on line–no need for an envelope and stamp.

Details are at: http://www.prixaurorawards.ca/English/AwardProcess/nominationForm.php. If you have trouble with the detailed address, go to their website at www.prixaurorawards.ca. Click on “English” then click on “nomination form.” Or just google “prix aurora awards.”

Aurora Awards are Canada’s top awards for Canadian Science Fiction and Fantasy–writing, art and other works. For a list of all eligible entries, check out the Canadian SF Works Database.

If you would like to nominate me for a “Best Short Form Work in English,” consider checking out my eligible short story, “Paid in Full,” published in Asimov’s Science Fiction, vol. 31 #10-11, the 2007 October/November issue. You can read the full text on my website, www.speculative-fiction.ca.

Or, have a look at THE PHANTOM OF THE SPACE OPERA, a live performance at the August, 2007 Conversion in Calgary, which is eligible for “Best Work in English, Other.” A DVD of the performance is available, and it will be uploaded onto YouTube by early January for general viewing. I directed and edited the movie, and the writer/actors were all Calgary writers.

Other members of IFWA (Calgary’s Science Fiction / Fantasty writing group) with eligible works include:
• Randy McCharles (“Vampires of the Canadian Rockies”) and Susan Forest (“Tomorrow and Tomorrow”) in Tesseracts 11, eligible in “Best Short Form Work in English”
• Randy McCharles’s and Sandy Fitzpatrick’s stories from the Okal Rel anthology, for “Best Short Form Work in English”
• Hayden Trenholm’s novelette, “Like Water in the Desert” from Challenging Destiny #24 is eligible in “Best Short Form Work in English”
• Robert J. Sawyer’s Rollback (Tor) is eligible in the “Best Long Form Work in English”
• Kirstin Morrell is eligible in “Best Fan Organizational” category for chairing last year’s Con-Version

You can nominate 3 works in each category. Please consider nominating a writer from western Canada!

Prix Aurora Awards


It is time, again, for nominations for the Aurora Awards, Canada’s top awards for Canadian Science Fiction and Fantasy: writing, art, fan activities and other works. This year, the Auroras will be presented at Keycon in Winnipeg, Manitoba, the weekend of May 16-19, 2008). Hence the deadline for entering nominations is March 17, 2008.

This year the form is MUCH easier, as you can enter online–no need for an envelope and stamp. For a list of all eligible entries, check out the Canadian SF Works Database. You can nominate 3 works in each category.

If you would like to nominate me for a “Best Short Form Work in English,” consider checking out my eligible short story, “Paid in Full,” published in Asimov’s Science Fiction, vol. 31 #10-11, the 2007 October/November issue. You can read the full text here.

Or, have a look at THE PHANTOM OF THE SPACE OPERA, a live performance at the August, 2007 Conversion in Calgary, which is eligible for “Best Work in English, Other.” A DVD of the performance is available, and it will be uploaded onto YouTube by early January for general viewing.

Sale to Analog!


Sometimes the news comes thick and fast. I was thrilled a week ago to receive a letter from Stan Schmidt, editor of Analog Science Fiction and Fact, telling me he was buying my latest short story. I had the good fortune to meet Stan a year ago at Worldcon in Los Angeles when I was invited to the Analog / Asimov party as one of the new contributors to Asimov’s. Asked if I had a story for him, I was able to say it was in the mail. Alas, “Tomorrow and Tomorrow” was too “bleak” for Stan–hey, I’m Canadian!–but it was subsequently picked up by Holly Phillips for Tesseracts Eleven, which will be out later this month.

So, I sent Stan “The Right Chemistry,” a short, funny piece that made him laugh out loud, but wasn’t what his readers expect science fiction to be. I had been reading Analog all along, of course, but I got out all my old copies and re-read the short stories, trying to analyze what the commonalities might be. Then I wrote “Back” specifically for Stan, and put it in the mail.

Months passed.

One night I came home from work and checked the mail. There was an envelope in my own handwriting, and I thought, “Oh, which one rejected me?” I only had two stories out in circulation at the time. I opened the flap and saw the “Analog” letterhead and thought, “Stan had that story a long time; I really was hoping he was going to buy it.” Oh, well. Then I read the letter. His first three words were “I’m buying BACK!” Needless to say, I had to jump up and down a few times before reading
the rest of the letter. He had a couple of edits for me, which I sent off within the week.

Ahh. Good times.