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Wise is he: SFWA makes Harry Harrison a Grand Master

18/07/2008. Contributed by Jessica Martin

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The Science Fiction and Fantasy Writers of America will name Harry Harrison, the science fiction author of works such as The Stainless Steel Rat series and Make Room Make Room, as this year's Damon Knight Grand Master during the 2009 Nebula awards. A much deserved award, Harry.

The Nebula Awards Weekend will be held April 24th-26th 2008 in Los Angeles. Writer Robert Silverberg will be presenting Harry his award.

Harry said, "There are few moments in life that can be taken out and savored in memory. One happened today. A phone call from our President Russell Davis with the startling news that I was to be the 2009 Grand Master nearly led to the collapse of a stout writer! It's still soaking in, but may I express my fervent thanks to all involved for this signal honor."

An illustrator and freelance non-fiction writer, Harrison published his first science fiction story Rock Diver, in the August 1951 issue of Worlds Beyond. From that point he went on to produce more than 62 novels, eight short fiction collections, six non-fiction books and countless short stories.

Harrison was born in 1925 and served in the U.S. Army during World War II, an experience that made a strong negative impression on him and inspired his satirical Bill, the Galactic Hero novel series. A regular contributor to the legendary John W. Campbell's Astounding, Harrison's work often reflected his interest in environmental issues and non-violent resolutions to conflict. His best-known creations are The Stainless Steel Rat and Make Room! Make Room! on which the film Soylent Green was based.

His more recent works include best-selling alternate world trilogies West of Eden and Stars and Stripes Forever!

Until 2002 the title was simply Grand Master. In 2002 it was renamed in honour of SFWA's founder, Damon Knight, who died that year.

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