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Sunday, March 20, 2016

The actualities and the possibilities

“The historical novelist has to consider what has actually happened, while the SF writer is dealing in possibilities, but they are both in the business of imagining a world unlike our own and yet connected to it.” – Pamela Sargent

Born on this date in 1948, Sargent is an American science fiction author and editor. Winner of the prestigious SciFi Nebula Award, she is best known for her series on the terraforming of Venus, and for editing various anthologies celebrating the contributions of women in the history of science fiction.  Her excellent Firebrands: The Heroines of Science Fiction and Fantasy (co-authored with Ron Miller) and her Women of Wonder series are among the best in the field. 
                                                                           Pamela Sargent
 Sargent has penned nearly 30 novels and half-dozen story collections and also collaborated on several novels in the Star Trek series.  Her work is noted for its connections between time periods.  She said history is crucial to SciFi writing. “A feeling for history is almost an essential for writing and appreciating good science fiction,” she said.  “(It’s crucial) for sensing the connections between the past and future that run through our present.”

In 2012, she was honored with The Pilgrim Award, presented by the Science Fiction Research Association for Lifetime Achievement in the field of science fiction scholarship.   “My grandfather allowed as how I might live long enough to see a Mars landing,” she said.   “I haven't, of course, except in fiction, including my own, and strongly doubt that I ever will.”

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