Ellen Asher

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Ellen Asher
Occupation Editor
Notable awards Edward E. Smith Memorial Award for Imaginative Fiction, 2001
World Fantasy Award for Life Achievement, 2009

Ellen Asher is an American science fiction editor who served as editor-in-chief of the Science Fiction Book Club (SFBC) for thirty-four years, from February 8, 1973, through June 1, 2007.[1] She grew up in New York City and began editing science fiction at New American Library from 1970 to 1972.[2][3]

As editor-in-chief of the SFBC, she oversaw the publication of anthologies like The Dragon Quintet, Vampire Sextet, Fair Folk, and Masterpieces of Terror and the Supernatural.[4] In 1984, Asher sat as a judge for the World Fantasy Awards.[5] In 2001, Asher received the New England Science Fiction Association Edward E. Smith Memorial Award.[6] In early 2007, the multinational media corporation, Bertelsmann, bought a controlling portion of Bookspan, of which the SFBC is an affiliate.[7] In the subsequent restructuring, Asher was given an early retirement.[8]

Asher received the World Fantasy Award for Life Achievement in 2009 and was a guest of honor at Renovation, the 69th World Science Fiction Convention.[9] She occasionally performs some freelance work.[4]


  1. Strock, Ian (2007-07-22). "Ellen Asher Leaving Science Fiction Book Club". Retrieved 2011-04-26. 
  2. "Readercon 20 Program Guide" (PDF). Readercon. p. 41. Retrieved 2011-04-26. 
  3. Asher, Ellen (2009-04-07). Datlow, Ellen, ed. Clubbing. Penguin Books. p. 301. ISBN 978-0-451-46255-8. 
  4. 4.0 4.1 "Guest of Honor - Ellen Asher". Renovation. Retrieved 2011-04-26. 
  5. "1984 World Fantasy Awards". Locus. Retrieved 2011-04-26. 
  6. "The E. E. Smith Memorial Award". New England Science Fiction Association. Retrieved 2011-04-26. 
  7. Strock, Ian (2007-04-11). "Bertelsmann buys TimeWarner's half of Bookspan". Retrieved 2011-04-26. 
  8. Strock, Ian (2007-05-22). "Bertelsmann cutting book clubs and jobs; SFBC may be affected". Retrieved 2011-04-26. 
  9. "Award Winners & Nominees". World Fantasy Convention. Retrieved 2011-04-26.