The SLF is a non-profit arts foundation, modeled on the National Endowment for the Arts, but focused specifically on serving the speculative literature (science fiction, fantasy, and horror) community.  We aim to encourage promising new writers, assist established writers, facilitate the work of quality magazines and small presses, and develop a greater public appreciation of speculative fiction.  Our primary projects at the moment are our various cash grants to writers; these grants are designed as ‘gateway’ grants, with no entry fees and easy application processes.  Our website also offers a host of community resources, covering a broad range of topics, such as academic resources for teachers, convention listings for fans, editorial guidelines for self-publishers, and much more.  Welcome!

 – Mary Anne Mohanraj, Executive Director

Deep Dish Reading Sat 10/7!

Join novelist Mary Robinette Kowal, debut novelist Cath Schaff-Stump, host Mary Anne Mohanraj, plus Chris Bauer, Richard Chwedyk, and Meg Khoury for the inaugural Deep Dish, a Chicago SF/F reading series.

WHERE:         Volumes Book Cafe, 1474 N. Milwaukee Ave., Chicago, IL

WHEN:          Saturday, October 7, 7 p.m.

Mary Robinette Kowal is the author of historical fantasy novels: The Glamourist Histories series and Ghost Talkers, has received the Campbell Award for Best New Writer, three Hugo awards, the RT Reviews award for Best Fantasy Novel, and has been a finalist for the Hugo, Nebula, and Locus awards. maryrobinettekowal.com.

Mary Anne Mohanraj wrote Bodies in Motion (finalist for Asian American Book Awards, translated into six languages) and twelve other titles; she’s executive director of the SLF, and an English professor at UIC. maryannemohanraj.com

Cath Schaff-Stump writes speculative fiction for children and adults, and is a co-host on the writing and geek-life fan podcast Unreliable Narrators. You can find her online at Facebook, Goodreads, Amazon, @cathschaffstump, cathschaffstump.com, and unreliablenarrators.net

Sponsored by the SLF (Speculative Literature Foundation, www.speclit.org), SFWA (the Science Fiction and Fantasy Writers’ Association, www.sfwa.org), and CNSC (Chicago Nerd Social Club, www.chicagonerds.com).

NEXT: The next reading in the series, featuring Hugo-nominated novelist Ada Palmer, and debut novelist Michael Moreci, will be Thursday, December 7th, 7 p.m., at Volumes.

Slight Delay

We were supposed to announce the winner(s) of the 2017 Diverse Writers Grant and the Diverse Worlds Grant this past Friday, September 15, but our jurors are still hard at work reading the applications. We want to make sure every application gets the attention it deserves, so we’re not exactly sure when we will announce the winner(s). We apologize for the delay, and we thank you for your patience.

In the meantime, please check our Facebook page regularly for updates about the diversity grants. The applications are exceptional this year, as they’ve been in previous years, and we’re excited to see who our jurors choose as winner(s). The number of apps we received was a surprise this year (190!), and our jurors are impressed by the quality of the writing samples.

So, we’re still working hard choose our winner (or winners), but it will us take a bit more time. If you have any questions or concerns about the diversity grants, please feel free to ask us on our Facebook page, or you can email our Managing Director Malon Edwards at: managing_dir@speclit.org.

Announcing the Winner of the 2016 Diverse Writers and Diverse Worlds Grants

Gabriel Thibodeau and Eden Royce are the Winners of the 2016 Diverse Writers and Diverse Worlds Grants

The Speculative Fiction Foundation has awarded the 2016 Diverse Writers Grant to Gabriel Thibodeau and the 2016 Diverse Worlds Grant to Eden Royce. The two $500 awards support any purpose that writer recipients may choose to benefit their work. Both are intended to foster the creation of speculative fiction work rich in diversity by facilitating completion of new, in-progress work, rather than recognizing already-published work.

The $500 Diverse Writers grant is “intended to support new and emerging writers from underrepresented and underprivileged groups, such as writers of color, women, queer writers, disabled writers, working-class writers, etc. — those whose marginalized identities may present additional obstacles in the writing / publishing process.” The $500 Diverse Worlds grant is “intended for work that best presents a diverse world, regardless of the writer’s background.”

Royce’s work has appeared in a number of anthologies of horror and dark fiction, and her articles have appeared in the Los Angeles Review of Books and Graveyard Shift Sisters. In 2015, she published a collection of southern gothic horror entitled Spook Lights. She notes that the collection includes “descriptions of the lives of African-Americans, many times underrepresented in horror fiction or relegated to secondary and tertiary characters.” She hopes that the Diverse Worlds grant will help to “increase the visibility of my work and in doing so, widen the definition of horror to include more marginalized voices.” Her website is edenroyce.com.

Thibodeau is an author of magical realism, and he says that, “My voice as a writer is directly influenced by my culture, history, and background. It makes perfect sense that I feel most inspired writing within a genre born of Latin blood.” He adds that he’s thrilled to receive an award that “shirks the boundaries that, in this magic, gay Mexican’s opinion, arbitrarily limit much of the literature we see published today [and] sees that otherness as an asset and an opportunity.” His website is gabrielthibodeau.com.

In 2016, there were 87 applications for the grants, which are awarded by a volunteer jury based on merit. This year’s jurors were Leah Bobet, Tonya Liburd, James Nicoll, and Malon Edwards. The jury also chooses Honourable Mentions for both grants; this year, the Honorable Mentions for the Diverse Writers grant were Errick Nunnally, Pascha Stevenson, and Zainab Amadhy, while the Honourable Mentions for the Diverse Worlds grant were Errick Nunnally, Mimi Mondal, and Zainab Amadhy. The 2015 winner of both grants was author Carmen Maria Machado.

Founded in January, 2004 to promote literary quality in speculative fiction, the all-volunteer Foundation is led by Mary Anne Mohanraj and 30 other committed volunteers. The Foundation maintains a comprehensive website offering information for readers, writers, editors and publishers of speculative fiction, develops book lists and outreach materials for schools and libraries, and raises funds for redistribution to other organizations in the field, as well as four awards made annually to writers, of which the Diverse Writers and World Grants are two. The others include the Gulliver Travel Research Grant, Older Writers Grant, and the Working Class Writers Grant. For more information about the Speculative Literature Foundation, contact Malon Edwards at managing_dir@speclit.org or visit the website at http://www.speclit.org.


Update on the 2016 Working Class Writers Grant:


Our jurors are still in the process of selecting the winner for the 2016 Working Class Writers Grant. We hope to select a winner by mid-May.

Once we do, Our Managing Director, Malon Edwards, will send out an email to all applicants announcing the winner.

For all information and guidelines, please visit our Working Class Writers Grant page.