The Clarion Foundation Announces 2014 Calendar Celebrating Clarion Workshop's Founders and Alumni
The Clarion Foundation announced today the launch of its 2014 calendar, a first for the organization, highlighting some of the ways in which depictions of gender, and particularly women, have changed since the Golden Age of science fiction some 60 years ago.
"Back in the day, it was common to see SF book and magazine covers featuring shapely, screaming females helpless in the clutches of monsters, robots or bad guys, waiting for handsome heroes to rescue them. We've come a long way since then," says Jim Shea, Clarion Foundation trustee and Chief of Development. "Modern science fiction and fantasy is full of complex, powerful, attractive characters of both genders now. Clarion graduates and faculty members have made major contributions to this evolution that we are very proud of, and we felt it was a good time to showcase some of those writers. We're pleased to take a format that once contributed to sexist stereotypes and turn it on its head."
The calendar, developed in collaboration with acclaimed artist Lee Moyer and currently available only through Clarion's Indiegogo campaign, will be available in bookstores nationwide by mid-November. The Indiegogo campaign is designed to generate publicity and give Clarion's friends and supporters the opportunity to secure perks like archival prints of calendar pages while simultaneously supporting the Foundation's mission to preserve and protect the future of the Clarion Science Fiction and Fantasy Writers Workshop at UC San Diego.
The third in Lee Moyer's ongoing Literary Pin-up Calendar series, the Clarion 2014 calendar celebrates the work of Clarion co-founders Damon Knight and Kate Wilhelm; alumni Kim Stanley Robinson, Kelly Link, Cory Doctorow, Kathe Koja, Greg Frost, and Pat Murphy; and Workshop teachers and friends Neil Gaiman, Karen Joy Fowler, Mary Anne Mohanraj, and Mary Robinette Kowal. Many of the authors worked closely with artist Moyer -- who donated his time and talents -- to identify a story and character representative of their work, and then to shape the right image.
Describing Clarion's take on the pin-up tradition, Karen Fowler, Clarion Foundation President, stated, "This is our attempt to take new ownership of an old tradition. We knew that the 'pin-ups' defined by people like Mary Anne Mohanraj, Pat Murphy, Kelly Link, and Kate Wilhelm would not be traditional."
Blogging about the calendar, author Mary Anne Mohanraj encouraged her readers to visit the Indiegogo campaign, pointing them to her page in the calendar, "...featuring the kick-ass grad student programmer and fighter Kimsriyalani, from The Stars Change. Mohanraj continued, "If you think it gives me a thrill to see one of my characters, a cat woman with pointed ears, in a gorgeous sexy illustration, then perhaps you know that I'm the girl who grew up on Elfquest comics, and spent perhaps too many of her formative college years hanging out on FurryMuck."
For further information on the campaign, or to order copies of the calendar for your bookstore, please contact Jim Shea at firstname.lastname@example.org.