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RevolutionSF Remembers Andre Norton
Revolution News
© Joe Crowe
March 18, 2005

Science fiction and fantasy author Andre Norton has died at age 93.

She is perhaps best known for her "Witch World" fantasy series. She wrote 130 novels, over 100 short stories, and edited numerous anthologies. "Witch World" began in 1963, and continued for over 30 stories, said the SFWA's obituary.

She is the first woman to be named an SFWA Grand Master, and is the first woman in the Science Fiction and Fantasy Hall of Fame.

Norton requested that she be cremated with copies of her first and last novels. Her first novel, "The Prince Commands" was published in 1934. "Three Hands of Scorpio" is her last; Tor is set to release it in April 2005.

The SFWA has created the Andre Norton Award for young adult novels. The first will be awarded in 2006.

Her birth name is Alice Mary Norton; she published as Andre, figuring that a male writer's name would sell better to the young boys in her audience. She legally changed her name to Andre in 1934.

Her series, besides "Witch World," included "Time Traders," "Solar Queen," "Forerunner," "Beast Master," "Crosstime," and "Janus."

She wrote what we believe is the first novelization of a role-playing game, "Quag Keep" in 1979. It is based in the Dungeons and Dragons "Greyhawk" setting. The story's characters became aware that their lives were being governed by extradimensional nerds rolling dice. Characters in the story included a wereboar berserker and a lizard-man, which were not available to be played by Dungeons and Dragons players at the time. The SFWA reports that "Return to Quag's Keep" is set for 2006.

In a letter printed on Andre-Norton.org, she wrote in 1979, "SF appeals to me, as I have always enjoyed reading it, and it is a purely imaginative exercise -- though one does have to do a lot of research for each book. I find that the sword-and-sorcery has the greatest appeal for myself -- and it is the most fun to write."

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