The first annual Norton Awards, a San Francisco Bay area specific award given each year for "extraordinary invention and creativity unhindered by the constraints of paltry reason", were presented on September 14th at the Tachyon Publications eight anniversary party held at Borderlands Books in San Francisco. Winners were author Kage Baker and San Francisco entrepreneur Ron Turner.
The award is named after and commemorates the memory of Joshua Norton I, Emperor of the United States of America and Protector of Mexico, and is represented by a bust of Norton sculpted by Paul Groendes. The physical award is called a Joshua. It is a juried award, and this year’s judges were Richard Lupoff (author), Alan Beatts (book store proprietor), and Jacob Weisman (editor/publisher). Two awards are given, one to a single work of SF/F/H or to an author in these genres; the second to any creation, creator, or service relating to those genres.
Kage Baker was on hand to receive her award for "A Night on the Barbary Coast", from The Silver Gryphon Anthology, edited by Gary Turner and Marty Halpern. Receiving the award for Ron Turner, the owner of local distributor and comic book publisher, Last Gasp, was Last Gasp employee Bucky Sinister.
The awards ceremony/anniversary party, which was free and open to the public, was well-attended. Peter S. Beagle, Michael Swanwick, and Sheila Finch all read selections from their latest Tachyon releases. Richard Lupoff read a selection from his forthcoming Tachyon anthology, The Best of Xero. Other notable authors and editors in attendance included Mark Budz, Grania Davis, Cory Doctorow, Marina Fitch, Marty Halpern, Jeremy Lassen, Pat Murphy, and Richard Paul Russo.
(reported by Jacob Weisman; photos show the Norton Award, Kage Baker receiving hers, and Cory Doctorow)