The Science Fiction and Fantasy Writers of America has announced Jane Yolen as the 33rd Damon Knight Grand Master for her contributions to the literature of science fiction and fantasy, joining such luminaries as Ray Bradbury, Anne McCaffrey, Ursula K. LeGuin, Isaac Asimov, and Joe Haldeman.
Jane Yolen was 22 when she published her first novel, Pirates in Petticoats. Over her long career, she has written everything from young adult novels to picture books to adult fiction to poetry, as well as editing several anthologies. Much of her work plays with fairy tale tropes, and she has actually been called “America’s Hans Christian Andersen” by Newsweek. Her short story “Sister Emily’s Lightship” received a In 1986 Nebula Award, while her novelette “Lost Girls” won in 1997. Yolen has also won three Mythopoeic Awards for Cards of Grief, Briar Rose, and The Young Merlin Trilogy. She has won the World Fantasy Award for editing Favorite Folktales from Around the World and later received WFA’s Lifetime Achievement Award.
SFWA president Cat Rambo praised Yolen, saying, “Jane Yolen, who has written fantasy and science fiction for ages up and down the range of possibilities, epitomizes what a Grand Master should be. Her close to 300 hundred books, multiple awards, and overall high standard of prose and storytelling make her one of the treasures of fantasy and science fiction.“
And Yolen responded to the news saying, “To know I am now on the same list as Isaac Asimov, Andre Norton, and Ursula Le Guin is the kind of shock to the system that makes me want to write better each day. Revise, revision, and reinvent.”
The award will be presented at the 52nd Annual Nebula Conference and Awards Ceremony in Pittsburgh, PA, May 18-21, 2017. You can read more about the award on the Science Fiction and Fantasy Writers of America’s site.