Clare Winger Harris

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Clare Winger Harris.Photo from Forry Ackerman.

(January 18, 1891 – October 26, 1968)

Clare Winger Harris of Ohio was the first woman whose sf was published under her own name in prozines. Her first short story, “The Runaway World,” appeared in the July 1926 issue of Weird Tales, bylined Mrs. F. C. Harris.

She also wrote for Amazing, where her story “The Fate of the Poseidonia” placed third in a 1927 Hugo Gernsback contest, and others, ultimately publishing a dozen stories, frequently reprinted.

Gernsback was somewhat patronizing: "That the third prize winner should prove to be a woman was one of the surprises of the contest, for, as a rule, women do not make good scientifiction writers, because their education and general tendencies on scientific matters are usually limited. But the exception, as usual, proves the rule, the exception in this case being extraordinarily impressive."

Her final work, "The Vibrometer," appeared in Jerry Siegel and Joe Shuster’s fanzine Science Fiction in 1933. In 1947, she self-published an anthology of her short stories, Away from the Here and Now: Stories in Pseudo-Science; a complete collection of her sf, The Artificial Man and Other Stories appeared in 2019.

She was a member of the Golden Gate Scientific Association as of 1930. She attended the first Westercon in 1948.

In the August 1931 issue of Wonder Stories, Harris categorized 16 basic science fiction themes, including "interplanetary space travel," "adventures on other worlds," and "the creation of synthetic life."

Harris’s father, Frank Stover Winger, published an sf novel, The Wizard of the Island; or, The Vindication of Prof. Waldinger, in 1917.

Person 18911968
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