The Horror Writers Association has chosen two long-time icons of the genre to receive the prestigious Lifetime Achievement Award this year. The award, given in recognition of the recipient’s overall body of work, will go to Ellen Datlow and to Al Feldstein.
Ellen Datlow is unquestionably one of the most influential editors in the history of the horror genre. Her long-running The Year’s Best Fantasy and Horror (which she co-edited with Terri Windling, Kelly Link and Gavin J. Grant), and, more recently, The Best Horror of the Year, have helped define the art of horror writing since 1988. Other acclaimed works she’s edited include Inferno, Poe: 19 New Tales Inspired by Edgar Allan Poe, Darkness: Two Decades of Modern Horror, Lovecraft Unbound, The Beastly Bride (with Terri Windling), Teeth: Vampire Tales (also with Terri Windling), and Haunted Legends (with Nick Mamatas). Forthcoming are Supernatural Noir, Naked City: Tales of Urban Fantasy, Blood and Other Cravings, and the young adult dystopian anthology After (the last with Windling). She was fiction editor of OMNI Magazine and SCIFICTION and has won multiple Locus Awards, Hugo Awards, Stoker Awards, International Horror Guild Awards, World Fantasy Awards, and The Shirley Jackson Award for her editing. She was named recipient of the 2007 Karl Edward Wagner Award, given at the British Fantasy Convention for “outstanding contribution to the genre.” Ellen also co-curates the long-running Fantastic Fiction at KGB reading series in New York City’s east village. Ellen, who will be attending the gala Stoker Awards presentation in Long Island on June 18 to receive the award in person, said, “WOW! I’m honored, and a bit taken aback – I’ve still got a lot more editing to do (I hope). Thank you.”
Al Feldstein is one of the most influential figures in the history of horror comics and graphic novels. Al arrived at the legendary company EC Comics in 1948, and went on to serve as one of the chief editors of EC’s New Trend series, which included Tales from the Crypt, The Haunt of Fear, The Vault of Horror, Shock SuspenStories, Weird Science, Weird Fantasy, Crime SuspenStories, Panic and Piracy. Feldstein originally contributed one story per issue as both writer and illustrator, but he eventually decided to focus on editing, providing art only for covers. He adapted stories by Ray Bradbury, and gave Harlan Ellison his first sale. His EC work has been reprinted in dozens of different editions, and has been adapted to film (The Vault of Horror, Tales from the Crypt). He is a recipient of the 1994 Inkpot Award from the San Diego ComicCon, and has also been recognized for his work as a painter. While Mr. Feldstein’s health will prevent him from accepting the award in person, he had this to say: “I am flattered beyond belief and deeply appreciative of the very special honor that you have bestowed upon me … mainly your organization’s prestigious Lifetime Achievement Award. I cannot tell you how grateful I am to be named the recipient of this Award.”
The Lifetime Achievement Award is the most prestigious of the Bram Stoker Awards, given by the HWA in acknowledgment of superior achievement not just in a single work but over an entire career. Past Lifetime Achievement Award winners include such noted authors as Stephen King, Anne Rice, Joyce Carol Oates, Ray Bradbury, F. Paul Wilson, Chelsea Quinn Yarbro, Brian Lumley, William F. Nolan, and Peter Straub. Winners must have exhibited a profound, positive impact on the fields of horror and dark fantasy, and be at least sixty years of age or have been published for a minimum of thirty-five years.
The LAAs will be presented on June 18 as part of the Bram Stoker Awards presentation in Long Island. The awards highlight an entire “Stoker Awards Weekend,” happening from June 16-19 at Long Island Marriott Hotel and Convention Center. For more information, visit: Stoker Awards Weekend. The Horror Writers Association is a worldwide organization promoting dark literature and its creators. Started in 1985, it has over 500 members who are writing professionally in fiction, nonfiction, videogames, films, comics, and other media.