2010: Maria Quinn

Norma K. Hemming Award
2010 Norma K Hemming Award presented at Aussiecon 4

Hamish accepts the inaugural Norma K Hemming award from Bill Wright
Hamish accepts the inaugural Norma K Hemming award from Bill Wright

The inaugural Norma K Hemming Award Norma K. Hemming Award for excellence in the exploration of themes of race, gender class and sexuality in speculative fiction or in related arts and media was presented at Aussiecon 4 (68th World Science Fiction Convention in Melbourne on 2-6 September 2010.

The award, which went to Maria Quinn for her novel The Gene Thieves [HarperCollins-Voyager, 2009] was a posthumous award she having died a few months earlier from leukaemia. It was accepted by her son Hamish (left) from ASFF awards administrator Bill Wright.

The Norma K Hemming Award trophy, as it will be presented in future years, consists of an etched glass plate mounted on a stand with an attached metal plaque inscribed with the winner’s name.

The Norma K Hemming Award 2010
The Norma K Hemming Award 2010

For this inaugural award only, the plaque was replaced by an engraved crystal plinth.

The plate design by graphic artist Sarah Xu, features a boab tree-hydra design motif. The circular design represents the yonic, in contrast to so many phallic award representations.

The boab represents the Australian speculative fiction landscape (the boab being uniquely fantastical in itself) and the hydra reminds us of diversity within that.

For details of the late Maria Quinn (1942-2010) and Norma Kathleen Hemming (1937-1960) please refer to the Press Release (PDF – 835KB) issued after the awards ceremony.

A record of the award presentation ceremony at Aussiecon 4 was distributed to attendees as a Booklet (PDF – 2.1MB). It includes details of Norma Hemming, her life and times and the award named after her, Maria Quinn and her life and times, as well as a full list of nominations for the 2010 award.

Jurors for the inaugural (2010) award were writer-editor Russell Blackford, editor-publisher Rob Gerrand, author Tess Williams and editor Sarah Endacott. They will also judge the 2011 competition.

An anthology of Norma Hemming’s stories edited by Dr Toby Burrows, Head of the Scholars Centre at the University of Western Australia, was launched at the awards ceremony. The book is called Dwellers in Silence – Stories and Plays by Norma Hemming. It is available online from:
http://www.lulu.com/product/paperback/dwellers-in-silence-stories-and-plays-by-norma-hemming/12432795


Bill Wright – ASFF Awards Administrator (2010)