MABFAN NEWSLETTER # 36 (January 2003)

Michael A. Burstein's "Friends Across the Net" Newsletter

Happy new year to all. It's been about four months since I sent out my last newsletter, mostly because not much seemed to be happening that was worthy of a newsletter. And since I have become sensitive to spam, I'm doing my best only to send out newsletters when there really is news.

Consequently, this issue may be a little longer than usual; but I hope it's still all of interest. My philosophy is still to subscribe only those people who have asked, or those with whom I'm reciprocating their subscribing me to their own newsletters. If you feel you shouldn't be receiving this, by all means remove yourself from the list. Instructions for doing so, as always, are at the end.


To start off with, in the year 2002, I published two stories:

Perhaps that's not a lot, but I have two more stories scheduled for this year, and I'm hoping more to come as well...


It's the season again, and I am very pleased to note that "Spaceships" and "Bug Out!" (the novella written with Shane Tourtellotte) have made it to the Nebula preliminary ballot. Both stories will soon be available to read for free on the Analog webpage, if you haven't had a chance to see them yet. And speaking of awards...


Once again it's the season for both AnLab voting and Hugo nominating, and I want to remind people to vote.

First the AnLab. Every year, Analog magazine polls their readers for the best fiction they published. The winners receive the Analytical Laboratory Award, also called the AnLab. Readers used to have to mail in a ballot; now Analog also takes votes on-line. Anyone on this list who is a regular reader of Analog can make their choices known by going to and casting their votes. All voters are entered in a drawing for a one-year subscription to the magazine. The deadline to cast your ballot is the end of January. As for the Hugos, this year's Worldcon, TorCon III, should be placing the nominating ballots for the Hugos at their website,, sometime in the near future. If you were a member of last year's Worldcon, ConJose, or are a member of TorCon III, you can print out the ballot, fill it out with the stories you would like to see nominated for the Hugo, and mail it in. The deadline for this is the end of March; however, if you're not yet a member of TorCon III, you can still fill out a ballot as long as you purchase a Worldcon membership before January 31.

Needless to say, I have a vested interest in readers of mine participating in these two ballots. However, even if you're not planning to vote for any of my stories, I still encourage you to check it out. The more people who vote, the more meaningful the results.


Due to production delays, BURSTZINE #2 is not yet out. We'll probably have it out in February. We'll keep people posted at


I don't have a new story out this month, but in a way, there's something better. DAW Books has just published WONDROUS BEGINNINGS, a collections of science fiction writers' first published stories, in chronological order. The stories were selected by Steven H. Silver and Martin H. Greenberg. My first story, "TeleAbsence," is second-to-last, sharing the pages of this book with such luminaries as L. Sprauge De Camp, Arthur C. Clarke, and Orson Scott Card. And for those of you who already own the July 1995 Analog, there is a bonus brand-new introduction, explaining how I came to write the story in the first place. It all began at an Arisia science fiction convention, in January 1994. And speaking of Arisia...


As I send out this newsletter, Arisia '03 is this upcoming weekend, January 17-19, 2003, at the Boston Park Plaza. Nomi and I will be there, on a variety of interesting panels. In addition, since Nomi's birthday falls on the Friday of Arisia, we're thinking of hosting a small gathering with a birthday cake. If any of you are coming to Arisia and want to join in, just check the message board or our LiveJournals (see below) for more information. And for more information on Arisia, check

Next month, of course, we'll be at Boskone (February 14-16, 2003), and for the first time in many years, Boskone is being held in the city of Boston. (And, sadly, for the first time in many years, Nomi and I simply didn't have the time to serve on the Con Committee.) For more information, check


What's that, you say? You're absolutely dying for more frequent news from the life of Michael A. Burstein?

Well, I must admit that such a confession would have me scratching my head. But if you really want to keep up with me more frequently, you can now feel free to check out my LiveJournal, at I really don't consider this as much of a "weblog" or "blog" as most others, as I'm still getting used to the idea of posting public journal entires on a webpage. But hey, it's a good way to let people know when our phone service is out...


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Contrariwise, if you wish to subscribe, send me e-mail at and I'll add you in by hand.

For more frequent news, or to read some of the stuff I've written, check out my webpage at

-- Michael A. Burstein