Wednesday, January 01, 2014

Burstein named president of SASS

(This has been posted in a number of other places, so I might as well post it here, too.)

Distinguished science fiction author Michael A. Burstein has taken office as the first permanent president of the Society for the Advancement of Speculative Storytelling, Inc. (SASS), as of Jan. 1, 2014.

SASS was incorporated as a non-profit group in the State of Texas on July 30, 2012. It is dedicated to encouraging and mentoring aspiring and new writers of speculative fiction. In so doing, its activities shall include, but not be limited to, keeping its members informed of issues within the field, providing avenues of constructive critique and collegial discussion for its members, and encouraging interest and appreciation for all aspects of speculative fiction in multiple media.

SASS expressly disavows any socio-political goals while asserting the right of its members to discuss and explore any and subjects in speculative fiction writing. Members are expected to be respectful of each other at all times.

Burstein leads a nine-member Board of Directors, including Vice-President Brad Torgersen, Secretary Lou Antonelli, Treasurer Shedrick Pittman-Hassett, and members at large Bruce Bethke, Dario Ciriello, Park Cooper, Liz Burton and Rie Sheridan Rose.

The group's web page is:
http://www.sasswritersgroup.blogspot.com/

Its Facebook page is:
https://www.facebook.com/SocietyForTheAdvancementOfSpeculativeStorytelling

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Information on the members of the SASS Board of Directors follows:

President - Michael A. Burstein, Brookline, Massachusetts
Michael A. Burstein is a multiple Hugo and Nebula nominee, a former Secretary of the Science Fiction Writers of America (SFWA), and a former Vice-President of the New England Science Fiction Association(NESFA) . His  first published story, "TeleAbsence," appeared in the July 1995 issue of Analog, and was nominated for the Hugo Award.  Burstein won the John W. Campbell Award for Best New Writer at the 1997 World Science Fiction Convention.

Vice President - Brad Torgersen, Sunset, Utah
Brad R. Torgersen was a winner in the 2009 Writers of the Future contest, and has been published in Analog Science Fiction and Fact and InterGalactic Medicine Show. His 2010 novelette "Outbound" won the Analog reader's poll, and his 2011 novelette "Ray of Light" was nominated for both the Nebula Award and the Hugo Award. He was nominee for the John W. Campbell Award for Best New Writer in 2012.

Secretary - Lou Antonelli, Mount Pleasant, Texas
Louis S. Antonelli's first short story, "A Rocket for the Republic", was the last story bought by Gardner Dozois before he retired after 19 years as editor of Asimov's Science Fiction. He has published 81short stories since 2003 in magazines in the U.S., U.K., Canada, Australia, and India. His time storm story, "Great White Ship", published by Daily Science Fiction in 2012, was a finalist for the Sidewise Award in alternate history.

Treasurer - Shedrick Pittman-Hassett, Denton, Texas
Shedrick Pittman-Hassett is a professional librarian and has had several pieces published in professional journals. An aspiring speculative fiction writer, he has received honorable mentions in a number of writing competitions, including Writers of the Future. He is also an avid gamer and has had two pieces published in the award-winning Knights of the Dinner Table magazine.

Board members-at-large:
Bruce Bethke - Oakdale, Minnesota:  Publisher of Stupefying Stories
Liz Burton - Austin, Texas:  Executive Editor of Zumaya Publications
Dario Ciriello – San Francisco, California:  Editor and Publisher, Panverse Publishing
Park Cooper - Austin, Texas:  Writer of prose and graphic novels, co-owner of Wicker Man Studios
Rie Sheridan Rose -- Austin, Texas:  Small press author and lyricist
-30-

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Latest reviews

"It’s possible that you haven’t run into the stories of Lou Antonelli. Since 2003, he’s been publishing delightful short tales of alternate history all over the nooks and crannies of the SF world. Thanks to Fantastic Books, we now have 28 of these little gems in one place. "Many of Antonelli’s stories have an unexpected twist ending. And many of them are what he calls “secret history” stories, which aren’t exactly alternate history—they’re set in our familiar history, but there’s always some element that contemporary observers missed. " -

- Don Sakers, The Reference Library, Analog July-Aug. 2014

A better path develops for a distraught man in “Double Exposure” by Lou Antonelli (debut 6/11 and reviewed by Frank D). Jake is about to end it all. He has been trying to keep his high maintenance wife happy for decades and has needed to embezzle to satisfy her spending habits. Now, on the verge of indictment and abandoned by his spouse, he buys a gun. Before he pulls the trigger, he spies a Kodak one-day photo hut. Curious, he pulls up to the window. They are holding pictures of him and his last girlfriend from 30 years before. The package is a lot thicker than it should be. Double Exposure” is listed as an Alternative History story but I would classify it as a Magical Realism tale. It is set as a second chance tale, a look into a life that should have been. The author is inspired by his memories of the old photo huts (I remember them) and of their disappearance. A cool idea (photos of another life), one that I could imagine would make for a great anthology.

- Frank Dutkiewicz, Diabolical Plots

“Great White Ship”: A traveler stuck waiting for a flight strikes up a conversation with an old airline employee. The Old Timer tells him a story of a Great White Airship that arrives from a most unusual destination. The story of a craft from an alternate reality and how it got there is only the precursor to the final act. This is one of my favorite stories from this site. I have a great passion for lighter-than-air craft and their potential as a future means of transport, which opens the story. The author uses this speculation to launch into an engaging tale. As fascinating as the main story line is, the alternate history premise that accompanies it is just as worthwhile. This story was well written and very well thought out. It is well worth the read. Recommended.

- James Hanzelka, Diabolical Plots

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