Robert J. Sawyer

Hugo and Nebula Award-Winning Science Fiction Writer

Archive for January, 2008

A nice review of Flashforward

Thursday, January 31st, 2008

My friend Bonnie Jean Mah just drew this to my attention: A very nice review of my 1999 novel Flashforward. Go me! :) The Robert J. Sawyer Web Site

New Interview with Rob

Wednesday, January 30th, 2008

McNally-Robinson, a wonderful Canadian bookstore chain, has relaunched its website, and is starting a series of SF&F author interviews. First up: Robert J. Sawyer, interviewed by Kent Pollard. The full text is here. The Robert J. Sawyer Web Site

The Dissing of SF

Tuesday, January 29th, 2008

I get awfully tired of the dissing of science fiction. In the last hour, I had to deal with it not once but twice. First, a major publisher doing a nonfiction book followed up in email on a bound galley they’d sent me; they want me to blurb the book. I gave them the blurb, […]

Sharron Smith: Ontario Librarian of the Year

Tuesday, January 29th, 2008

Sharron Smith is one gutsy lady. There are lots of community-wide reading programs in North America. Every once in a while, one of them will do a science-fiction book … but they always do it stealthfully, choosing books that aren’t labeled or marketed as science fiction. But when Waterloo Region, almost half-a-million people west of […]

Ed Hoch passes

Tuesday, January 29th, 2008

For over thirty years, my family had a vacation home near Rochester, New York, and I got pretty plugged into the literary community down there. And the grand old man of Rochester letters was Edward D. Hoch — a real gentleman, and a very fine writer. Peter Sellers and I published a story by him […]

Go West, Young Man!

Monday, January 28th, 2008

And I will — for much of October 2008. October 17-19, I will be Guest of Honour at the SF convention Pure Speculation in Edmonton, Alberta. October 24-26, I’ll be returning to the Surrey International Writers Conference, in Vancouver, British Columbia. And October 29-November 2, I’ll be at the World Fantasy Convention in Calgary, Alberta. […]

Sci Phi: The Journal of Science Fiction and Philosophy

Sunday, January 27th, 2008

Got a review copy of this fascinating new magazine. As the guy who advocates that our genre should really be called “philosophical fiction” — Phi-Fi instead of Sci-Fi — this is right up my street, and I’m looking forward to reading it. In the meantime, check it out. The Robert J. Sawyer Web Site

Canadians for the Campbell

Sunday, January 27th, 2008

There are two awards named for John W. Campbell, Jr. (pictured above), the great editor of Astounding Stories. One is the John W. Campbell Memorial Award for Best Novel of the Year, and it is the principal juried award in the SF field; I was fortunate enough to win it two years ago for my […]

Helen Keller: What a Gas!

Sunday, January 27th, 2008

Google has digitized many thousands of books, including The Story of My Life by Helen Keller. And apparently she was one flatulent lady. Check out the table of contents Google has extracted from the book. Ah, the rush to digitize! Even if the technology isn’t quite there yet … ;) The Robert J. Sawyer Web […]

Toronto launch party for Identity Theft

Saturday, January 26th, 2008

Mark your calendars! The Toronto launch party for Robert J. Sawyer’s new collection Identity Theft and Other Stories will be Saturday, May 10, 2008, from 3:00 p.m. on at Bakka-Phoenix Books, 697 Queen Street West (just west of Bathurst Street), Toronto, Ontario, Canada. The Robert J. Sawyer Web Site

Want to be my editor?

Saturday, January 26th, 2008

Penguin Canada is looking for a full-time editor specializing in science fiction, fantasy, mystery, and other commercial fiction to work out of its Toronto office. The new editor will work on the Canadian editions of Robert J. Sawyer‘s upcoming WWW trilogy, on future books by Guy Gavriel Kay, and on other projects. The job posting […]

Sometimes I do help them with their homework …

Saturday, January 26th, 2008

A high-school student wrote me this evening to say he was doing a project for his English class on my Rollback, in which he was going to explore four major moral issues related to rejuvenation and life prolongation — and he asked me to suggest what those issues might be. And so, in 90 seconds, […]

Rollback nominated for ALA’s Best Adult Genre Fiction list

Friday, January 25th, 2008

The American Library Association has announced its 2008 Reading List: Best Adult Genre Fiction, selecting books in eight different categories “that merit special attention by general adult readers and the librarians who work with them.” The winner this year in the Science Fiction category is In War Times by Kathleen Ann Goonan (congrats, Kathleen!), published […]

Rob the Tour Guide

Thursday, January 24th, 2008

(Left to right: Carolyn Clink, Robert J. Sawyer, Peter Halasz, Shoshana Glick, Robert Charles Wilson) Shoshana Glick, my dear friend from Seattle, came to stay with Carolyn and me for two days this week (Tuesday and Wednesday), and I played tour guide. On Tuesday, Sho and I went to the Royal Ontario Museum — my […]

At least in Austria, a chimp is not a person

Thursday, January 17th, 2008

Personhood for great apes is an issue I allude to from time to time in my writings, particulary in my Nebula Award-winning The Terminal Experiment from 1995: When Peter Hobson had taken a university elective in taxonomy, the two species of chimpanzees had been Pan troglodytes (common chimps) and Pan paniscus (pygmy chimps). But the […]

New Scientist on Low-Carb Dieting

Thursday, January 17th, 2008

As a guy who not only lost a lot of weight four years ago by restricting my carb intake, but has kept it off, I was gratified to see the following commentary in the January 19, 2008, New Scientist: For the past century, the advice to the overweight and obese has remained remarkably consistent: consume […]

Valley of Day-Glo cover

Wednesday, January 16th, 2008

The cover for Valley of Day-Glo by Nick DiChario, coming in May 2008 from Robert J. Sawyer Books, the science-fiction imprint of Red Deer Press. The wonderful cover design is by Karen Petherick Thomas, who also did these covers for my upcoming collections. The Robert J. Sawyer Web Site

Another Hugo suggestion: The Gospel According to Science Fiction

Wednesday, January 16th, 2008

The nonfiction book The Gospel According to Science Fiction by Gabriel McKee is a very worthy candidate, in my humble opinion, for the 2008 Hugo Award for for Best Related Book. Check out what I had to say when I first read the book last year. (The 2008 “Best Related Book” Hugo is to honor […]

Monkey Planet and its film adaptations

Wednesday, January 16th, 2008

I quite like the Pierre Boulle novel sometimes called Monkey Planet in English (a lousy translation of the title: Planet of the Apes is much closer in structure to the original French, which was “La Planète des singes” — and although “singe” is both “ape” and “monkey” in French, they are two different words (and […]

Sawyer interview on Roboethics online

Wednesday, January 16th, 2008

The whole 20-minute interview with science-fiction writer and futurist Robert J. Sawyer about robot ethics that aired Monday, January 14, 2008, on TVOntario’s flagship current-affairs program The Agenda is now available online here. To watch, click on Robert Sawyer. (There’s also a second interview with me accessible from the same page: Web-Exclusive: Robert Sawyer. That’s […]

Berton House memories

Wednesday, January 16th, 2008

In a web exclusive video, TVOntario’s Steve Paikin interviews Robert J. Sawyer about his summer at the Berton House Writing Retreat (click on “Web-Exclusive: Robert Sawyer). The Robert J. Sawyer Web Site

Coming Soon: The Collected Short Stories of RJS

Tuesday, January 15th, 2008

Coming in May 2008 to a bookstore near you: Red Deer Press is releasing my second collection of short stories, Identity Theft and Other Stories, in May 2008 in hardcover and trade paperback. At the same time, they’re issuing a new trade-paperback edition of my first collection, Iterations and Other Stories, which was first publised […]

Half a Wake …

Tuesday, January 15th, 2008

I sent the first 207 manuscript pages of Wake — about half the book — to Barbara Berson, my editor at Penguin Canada, today (and I’ll be sending her and Ginjer Buchanan, my US editor, the rest next month). Wake is the first volume of my new WWW trilogy. I note for the record that […]

RJS on TVO’s The Agenda on Monday

Sunday, January 13th, 2008

I’ll be a guest on TVOntario’s flagship current affairs program The Agenda tomorrow, Monday, January 14, 2008. The Agenda is seen across Ontario at 8:00 p.m. and 11:00 p.m., and also at 5:00 a.m. Tuesday morning, and will be available online. The host of the agenda is the always insightful Steve Paikin. We actually recorded […]

My Arisia programming schedule

Friday, January 11th, 2008

One week from today I head off to Cambridge, Massachusetts, for Arisia, a four-day SF convention over the 2008 Martin Luther King Day holiday weekend. Here’s my programming schedule: Robert J. Sawyer ReadingSat 11:00 AM 1hr Hugo winner Robert J. Sawyer reads. Trend? What Trend?Sat 1:00 PM 1hrLauran Anne Gilman (m), Robert J. Sawyer In […]

Preliminary Nebula Award Ballot includes Rollback

Friday, January 11th, 2008

The Science Fiction and Fantasy Writers of America have just released their Preliminary Nebula Award Ballot. Here’s the list in the Novel category (under the SFWA “rolling eligibility” rules, a number of these books are from two years ago): The Accidental Time Machine, by Joe Haldeman Blindsight, by Peter Watts Harry Potter and the Deathly […]

Raincoast Books: take the money and run

Thursday, January 10th, 2008

Bookninja has it right: Raincoast casts off sheep’s clothing. The Canadian publisher of the Harry Potter books claims it’s too poor to do any domestic Canadian publishing. Yeah, right. The Robert J. Sawyer Web Site

Party at Rob and Carolyn’s place

Thursday, January 10th, 2008

Carolyn and I are having a party at our place in Mississauga (Greater Toronto Area) on Saturday, February 9, 2008, from 4:00 p.m. to midnight. This is a party for our friends in science-fiction fandom, and for fans of my books. If you fall into either category, and would like to attend, please send me […]

And if you liked that other Doctor Who bit from YouTube …

Thursday, January 10th, 2008

… check out this one, from the British comedy series Dead Ringers, brought to my attention on my newsgroup by the beauteous and talented Bonnie Jean Mah. It’s just two minutes, and it’s a hoot. The Robert J. Sawyer Web Site

Fictionwise buys eReader store

Thursday, January 10th, 2008

Those savvy brothers Scott and Steve Pendergrast, who already run the best ebook store on the net, the venerable, have just bought the net’s biggest ebook store, — and I’m delighted. eReader is a better format, in my view, than Mobipocket, with a much more livable DRM scheme. Very interesting times in the […]