Hugo Awards eligibility: “Letters to Tiptree”, with an an essay of Valentin D.Ivanov, for Best Related Work

    The nominations for the 2016 Hugo Awards have just opened.

    Letters to Tiptree” (where you can also read some of the essays for free) is eligible for Best Related Work this year.

    The book is available on Amazon and other e-book retailers.

    An excerpt is available at

    Many reviews (average rating right now 4.36) have been posted at

    My own contribution is a letter „actually addressed to Bulgarian writer Zora Zagorska about Tiptree, which makes for an “interesting read”, quoting from one of the goodreads reviewers.

    My review of her novel “The Treasure of Planet Earth” can be seen here. Interestingly, this is the first Bulgarian science fiction novel, written by a woman.

    I have to add that participating in this project was very interesting and gratifying, and made me look at our own Bulgarian genre heritage in a very different way, through the prism of the modern gender relations. Unfortunately, the Bulgarian Science fiction (see my historical overview of the genre in Bulgaria ) is has only rarely made excursions into the English reading world.

    For some recent examples see:

    It is a personal quest of mine to popularize the Bulgarian speculative fiction abroad:

    Hugo Awards eligibility: Letters to Tiptree, with an an essay of mine, for Best Related Work

    ©Valentin D.Ivanov

    Valentin D. Ivanov is a Bulgarian astronomer working at the ESO Headquarters (European Southern Observatory/European Organisation for Astronomical Research in the Southern Hemisphere), Garching bei München, Germany.

    In the past, Valentin worked at the Paranal Observatory (Chile) of the European Southern Observatory. Among his primary research areas are the dynamics of star clusters, formation of stars, brown dwarfs, and exoplanets around such objects.

    Valentin Ivanov and Ray Jayawardhana are two of the pioneers of the investigation of the planemos, a special cast of exoplanets. They discovered the first double planemo Oph 162225-240515. This discovery, came just before the debate about the 2006 planet definition, and posed the problem about the distinction between planets and low-mass stars (brown dwarfs)

    Valentin D. Ivanov was born in the town of Bourgas, Bulgaria in 1967. He obtained his master degree in physics and astronomy at the University of Sofia in 1992. He earned a PhD degree at the University of Arizona, Tucson, Arizona, U.S.A. in 2001. He became a fellow at the European Southern Observatory, Cerro Paranal, and since 2003 he has been a staff astronomer at the European Southern Observatory, Paranal where he is instrument scientist for the wide-field near-infrared camera VIRCAM mounted at the VISTA_(telescope).

    In 2006, together with Kiril Dobrev, he has published a Science Fiction story collection in Bulgarian. Valentin is also writing science fiction and cooperated with the World SF Blog and SF Portal.

    Twin planemos discovery – ESO outreach

    Personal homepage :

    Crossroads, a story in the Bulgarian culture web magazine Public Republic (English):

    How I Saved the World, a story in the anthology Dialmonds in the Sky, Ed. M. Brotheron (English):

    Unstable atmospheric circulation, a story in the SF webzine Phantazm (English)

    Job Interview, a story in the e-zine for International SF Internova (English):

    Alice Hastings Bradley Sheldon (1915-1987) aka James Tiptree Jr was one of the best science fiction writers of the 20th century.

    Several themes interpenetrate Tiptree’s best work – Sex, Identity, Feminist depictions of male/female relations, Ecology, death – but the greatest of these is death. It is very rarely that a Tiptree story does not both deal directly with death and end in a death of the spirit, or of all hope, or of the body, or of the race.” – The Encyclopedia of Science Fiction



    ISBN: 978-1-922101-25-9 (pbk)

    ISBN: 978-1-922101-39-6 (ebk)

    Published August 2015

    “In celebration of the 100th anniversary of Alice Sheldon’s birth, and in recognition of the enormous influence of both Tiptree and Sheldon on the field, Twelfth Planet Press is publishing a selection of thoughtful letters written by science fiction and fantasy’s writers, editors, critics and fans to celebrate her, to recognise her work, and maybe in some cases to finish conversations set aside nearly thirty years ago.

    Letters From:

    Kathryn Allan

    Marleen S. Barr

    Stephanie Burgis

    Joyce Chng

    Aliette de Bodard

    L. Timmel Duchamp

    A.J. Fitzwater

    Lisa Goldstein

    Theodora Goss

    Nicola Griffith – read online at LA Review of Books

    Valentin D. Ivanov

    Gwyneth Jones – read online at Strange Horizons

    Rose Lemberg

    Sylvia Kelso

    Alex Dally MacFarlane

    Brit Mandelo – read online at

    Sandra McDonald

    Seanan McGuire

    Karen Miller

    Judith Moffett

    Cheryl Morgan

    Pat Murphy

    Sarah Pinsker

    Cat Rambo

    Tansy Rayner Roberts

    Justina Robson

    Nisi Shawl

    Nike Sulway

    Lucy Sussex

    Rachel Swirsky

    Bogi Takács

    Lynne M. Thomas

    Elisabeth Vonarburg

    Jo Walton

    Tess Williams

    And bonus reprint material including:

    • archived letters from Ursula K. Le Guin, Joanna Russ and James Tiptree Jr./Alice Sheldon
    • excerpts from The Secret Feminist Cabal: A Cultural History of Science Fiction Feminisms by Helen Merrick
    • excerpt from Battle of the Sexes in Science Fiction by Justine Larbalestier
    • an essay by Michael Swanwick

    Reviews for Letters to Tiptree

    From Subversive Reader: “I can’t imagine a better tribute to such an interesting author.”

    From Nicholas, From the Heart of Europe: “When I read books about sf, I want i) a better understanding of stuff I have already read and ii) suggestions of stuff I might read in the future which may appeal to me. I got both from this book.”

    From Tsana, at Tsana Reads: “My favourite part of this latter material was definitely the letters between Tiptree and her contemporaries. I would love to read more of them. The focus here was on Tiptree revealing her Alice Sheldon identity to her epistolary friends but I’m sure there were many other interesting conversations for us to snoop on from the future. … if you have even a passing interest in [Sheldon’s] life or fiction, this makes for an interesting read.”

    From Deanne Sheldon-Collins, in Aurealis #85: “A combination of personal and critical stories exploring a genre that resists definition yet often limits itself, Letters is an important book about science fiction – past, present, and future.”

    Alexandra Pierce reads, teaches, blogs, podcasts, cooks, knits, runs, eats, sleeps, and observes the stars. Not necessarily in that order of priority. She is a Christian, a feminist, and an Australian. She can be found at her website, and on the Hugo-winning Galactic Suburbia podcast.

    Alisa Krasnostein has been successfully editing and publishing books for eight years. In 2011, she won the World Fantasy Award for her work with the press, and Twelfth Planet books and stories have won the Shirley Jackson, WSFA Small Press, Aurealis, Ditmar, Chronos and Tin Duck awards. Alisa is also a four times Hugo nominee, and winner of the Peter McNamara Award in 2011, as co-host of the Hugo winning Galactic Suburbia Podcast. Twelfth Planet Press has championed underrepresented voices from the very start. Previous projects include the acclaimed Twelve Planets series of twelve short collections of short fiction by Australian women and Kaleidoscope, an anthology of diverse YA fiction, published in 2014.”



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