More pictures of me (Frank Wu) and assorted important and upcoming science fiction and fantasy writers, editors and artists whom I have had the pleasure of consorting with.
WRITERS and ILLUSTRATORS OF THE FUTURE AWARD CEREMONIES, HOLLYWOOD, 2001:
Two Tims and a Frank: At the 2001 Writers of the Future ceremony with winner Tim Johnston and judge Tim Powers. Johnston had wanted to talk to me about what I had written about last year's Illustration winner Justin Phillips, aka the Disappearing Scotsman, who was so painfully shy that he wouldn't come up on stage to accept his Illustration award. Johnston wanted to make sure I knew that not all Scots were as bafflingly reticent as Justin.
Denise Duff, Javier Ruiz, and three artists. Beautiful Denise is star of the Subspecies vampire movie series, and a real good photographer, too. Javier is Vice President of Author Services and husband to Barbara Ruiz, shown above. And then there's the three of us, three of the twelve Illustrator of the Future Grand Prize winners: Andy Clarkson, from this year; me, from last year; and Sergey Poyarkov, from 1990. Andy has three (count em! Three!) illos in this year's WOTF anthology. Sergey has published over a thousand of his odd, dreamlike illustrations, and his work has appeared in dozens of books. He was proudly carrying around a new book showcasing his work. I am amused to note that, right now, the number of people who have won the Grand Prize in the Illustrators of the Future contest is exactly equal to the number of people who have walked on the moon. Of course, they are still annually giving out Grand Prizes but we aren't walking on the moon any more. At least not yet.
With Eric Witchey, one of this year's Writers of the Future winners, with Sergey butting in. I had first met Eric at WesterCon '01, where we sat next to each other on a panel. Eric has been, among other things, a fire fighter, an art salesman, a motivational speaker, a waterbed salesman, a forklift operator, and door-to-door fire alarm salesman. His speech at the Writers of the Future ceremony was by far the best. He talked about how so many who came before had given him so much - not the least of them were Niven and Pournelle, whose novel Mote in God's Eye taught Eric what a science fiction novel could be. By a marvelous coincidence, those two happened to the ones who were presenting Eric his award. Eric wanted to find a way to give something back. He decided that what he would do was teach literacy, and he spoke touchingly of one high school drop-out girl who had learned to read. He said another new-found goal was to write stories for her that were so wonderful that they made her glad she had learned, and rewarded her for her efforts.
With Carlo Arellano. Just days after getting the phone call telling him he was one of the winners in the Illustrators of the Future contest, he got a second important call. That came from 20th Century Fox, asking him if he'd like to do costume design work for the new version of The Planet of the Apes. He of course accepted, and has since also done work for A.I. and Spider-Man. I suggested that we get a shot of him and me and his portfolio - because, as I told him, that the costumes for Apes were really, really cool, and the only great thing about the whole movie, which was otherwise a maelstrom of mediocrity. But he said that Fox would have a hissy-fit if I posted on the internet costume designs from Apes, so that's why he's covering up that one page.
WORLDCON, PHILADELPHIA, LABOR DAY WEEKEND, 2001:
Me, huddling with Jae Brim, Ken Wharton and Karen Perry. Jae - aka "the lovely Jae" or, as she likes to be called, "Princess," is a budding young writer. WorldCon was her first convention, but she did exactly what she was supposed to: Hang out with folks for four days with a smile on her face and a drink in her hand. Jae has since been one of the quarterly winners in the Writers of the Future contest. Karen already had a few stories to her credit, but I'm not sure what they are, since instead of her writing resume, we just chatted about getting sick in China and the squatty potties they have there.
Lori organized a side trip to go see the Liberty Bell, which was just a few blocks from the Philadelphia Convention Center where WorldCon took place. (You had to pass through Chinatown to get to it, and Lori promised to show us telephones with little pagodas atop them, but couldn't find any, but swore up and down that they do exist. Much sadness.) A, here's me and Lori. B, here's Lori, Marina Fitch and Erwin Bush. Marina is a "table slave" for Locus magazine. She mans the table and Charlie Brown, Locus' editor, pays her way to cons. Lori says that, even though she doesn't have to, she sometimes hangs out at the Locus table anyway, because, as she says, sooner or later anybody who's anybody comes by there. This may not be so essential to Lori's career, because she already knows everybody anyway.
Kent Brewster of Speculations looks on as Derryl Murphy of On Spec imitates artist Bob Eggleton "doing the hair thing." In three years, or so, my hair will be as long as Bob's and maybe I can get nominated for a Hugo, too.
Me with Patrick and Honna Swenson, publishers/editors of Talebones magazine. I have now done two illustrations for Talebones, one of the Sad Girl, and one of the Good Daughter and her mother. Patrick told me that the sad girl illo was Honna's favorite one in that issue. I think they liked the Good Daughter illo, too. At the con Patrick asked me if I'd like to work with them and James Van Pelt on Jim's upcoming short story collection. That should be a lot of fun. One of the main stories in that collection is about a giant spider that takes up residence in a classroom, but the teacher can't get anyone to get rid of it, even after its web fills up half the room. When the spider grabs and cocoons one of the students, the teacher isn't sure if she should mark the kid absent or not since she is, after all, still in the room. (I think the kid is eventually marked tardy, since she's not in her seat.) Should be a fun book cover project.
Me and Mary Anne Mohanraj, editor of Strange Horizons, the ezine for which I did two illos for the story "Slugball." Mary Anne is trying to convince me to do an article for her about biotech patent law and how you shouldn't worry about someone owning your genes. I kind of promised her that I would, but I didn't give her a definite timeframe, so that's sort of an out.
Two cute new friends, Linda Cormier of Miami FLA and R.C., who Linda swears is her sister, though they look nothing alike. The various folks from the Speculation's RumorMill newsgroup (Ken, Lori, Jae, Karen, me, et al.) started gathering unto ourselves additional folks (like Erwin (see above)), as we wandered from party to party. Ken just had a story published in the collection Bones of the World, which is all about the future. The far future. The far, far future. I've always been personally intrigued by the idea of the far future, maybe even an earth without people. I am haunted by the final vision seen by the Time Traveller in H.G. Wells' Time Machine - he comes upon a lonely, desolate beach, and bobbing around in the waves far off is a strange whale-like creature, but people are nowhere to be seen. They had brought 50 copies of Bones of the World to sell at the con, and by the time I heard about it (Sunday, the last night), they were all gone. But I held up a little bookmark advert for it and shouted "Bones of the World!" to the party crowd, to get some (unwanted) attention for Ken, who's really kind of a quiet guy and perhaps easily embarrassed. Then he reminded me that they were all out, so I needn't bother plugging it. So I told Ken the story of a butter maker during World War II. During the war, you couldn't get butter - it was rationed, sent off to the troops. But this one butter maker kept advertising, even though you couldn't buy it. Everybody thought they were crazy. But when the war ended, that brand of butter sold like hot cakes, because it was the brand that everybody associated with butter. (Don't ask - I don't remember the brand, but I think it's one that has since gone out of business.) So, on that basis, the idea was to generate interest in something that wasn't available. You always want most the thing you can't have. So I went around screaming as we went from party to party, "Bones of the World! You can't buy it! Bones of the World! You can't buy it!" R.C. and Linda (who runs both a dance studio AND works as a massage therapy) overheard me screaming this and joined our "party train" (Jae's term equivalent to Rob Hole's "food amoeba"). They came with us as we wandered from hotel room to hotel room in search of the ultimate coolness. The con is now over (and I swear, I spent the entire con schmoozing with authors and editors, with a beer in my hand and a smile on my face), but I can't wait for the next one. And the search for ultimate coolness continues...
P.S. Ken Wharton's first novel, Divine Intervention, was at the time coming out soon - but not yet. So, I could have been - but I'm not sure I would feel comfortable doing it - I could have been going around shouting, "Divine Intervention! You can't buy it!"
Indexed list of fotos of me and luminaries (number indicates the page they're on):
Forrest J. Ackerman 1, Daniel Abraham 5, Carlo Arellano 2, Art car artists 3, Kage Baker 3, Greg Bear 10, Gregory Benford 5, Terry Bisson 9, Diana Blackmom 8, Ken Brady 8, Kent Brewster 2, (I'm Just a) Bill 3, Jae Brim 2 5, David Brin 7, Charles N. Brown 9, William Brown 1, Tobias Buckell 5, Jim Burns 8, John Burridge 8, Erwin Bush 2, Chris Butler 3, Ted Chiang 6, Eric Choi 7, Andy Clarkson 2, Hal Clement 5, Julie Czerneda 1 (big head Julie) 4 7, Ellen Datlow 5, John DeChancie 3, Kim DeMulder 7, Vincent DiFate 1, Cory Doctorow 5, James S. Dorr 6, Denise Duff 2, Bob Eggleton's hair 5 10, Harlan Ellison 7, Marina Fitch 2, Frank Kelly Freas 1 3 5, Esther Friesner 7, Susan Fry 5, Chris Garcia 10, Michelle Garrison 8, Lisa Goldstein 9, Kirsten Gong-Wong 9, Kelly Green 10, Joe Haldeman 6, Jennifer Hall 9, Russ Heath 4, Barb and JC Hendee 8, Alea Henle 6, Jay Arr Henderson 1, Raechel "Roach" Henderson and Matt Moon 5, Howard Hendrix 10, Nina Kiriki Hoffman 1 8, Rob Hole Jr. 10, iguana 5, Rebecca Inch-Partridge 1 5 10, Alex Irvine 5, Jaws 5 10, Rebekah Jensen 1 5 10, Lindsey Johnson 1 4 5 8 10, Tim Johnston 2, Mark R. Kelly 5, David Kile 7, James Killus 3, Jay Lake 4 8, Geoffrey Landis 8, Warren Lapine's hair 5, Deb Layne 8, Lenora Rose 6, Aurora Lemieux 8, Natasha Levitan 10, Val Lakey Lindahn and Ron Lindahn 1, Samantha Ling 9, David Marusek 5, Fiona McAuliffe 4, Tiffanie McCoy 5, Terry McGarry 8, Jessie McKenna 4, Besty Mitchell 8, Syne Mitchell 8, Mary Anne Mohanraj 2, Mike Moscoe 8, Derryl Murphy 2, G. David Nordley 9, Jerry Oltion 4, Kathy Oltion 4, Diana Paxson 10, Karen Perry 2, Bill Pierce 5 10, Tim Powers 1 2, Sergey Poyarkov 2, Ken Rand 8, Jonathan Richman 6, Kim Stanley Robinson 9, Dianna Rodgers 8, Rhea Rose 8, Deborah J. Ross 10, Rowena 7, Robert J. Sawyer 7, Ken Scholes 8, Liz Shannon 8, Heather Shaw 9, Robert Sheckley 6, Gary Shockley 5 9, Robert Silverberg 7, S.N.Arly 6, Wen Spencer 5, Ted Stetson 8, Carel Struyken 7, Patrick and Honna Swenson 2 8, Isaac Szpindel 7, Jason Taniguchi 7, Bruce Taylor 8, Jim Terman 1 5 9 10, Helen Thompson 6, Mark Tiedeman 4, Bjo Trimble 5, Jeffrey Turner 8, Carol Ullman 6, James Van Pelt 6, Carrie Vaughn 10, Vernor Vinge 5, Ray Vukcevich 1 4, Lara Wells 5, Ken Wharton 1 3 4 5, Leslie What 8, Michael Whelan 8, Lori Ann White 1 2 3 5 6 8 10, Connie Willis 5 9, Eric Witchey 2 4, Jason Wittman 6, Gary K. Wolfe 9, William F. Wu 3, Susan Yi 5, Melissa Yuan-Innes 1.
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