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Self-Reference ENGINE wins the PKD Special Citation

Great news this weekend from Norwescon in Seattle—Toh EnJoe won the Special Citation for the Philip K. Dick Award for his groundbreaking book Self-Reference ENGINE.

The PKD Award is a juried award for best paperback-original science fiction book (not fantasy, not necessarily even a novel) published in the US. The Special Citation is the silver medal award, which comes with a cash prize and certificate. There’s also a little to-do: a ceremony with reception and buffet for authors hosted by Norwescon, and the opportunity to meet fans. It was especially gratifying for Self-Reference ENGINE to win the Citation, as Enjoe-san was a collaborator of Project Itoh’s, whose Harmony won a couple of years ago.

Here is EnJoe-san’s speech, in Japanese and English:

多くの方たちの好意と偶然に助けられてここに立つことができました。
Thank you. That I am standing here with you today is thanks to a great deal of happenstance, and the good will of a great number of people.

お前の英語はわからんという方、あとできていただければ、この原稿をお見せします。
Some of you may find my English difficult to understand, but I will be happy to show you this piece of paper when I am finished speaking.

わたしが NorwesCon にきてみようかなとはじめて思ったのは、2010年に、Project Itoh の “Harmony”がこの賞にノミネートされたときでした。結局そのときは間に合わず、USTREAMの向こうから、みなさんのことを眺めていました。今こうして直接お会いすることができ、とても嬉しいです。
The first time I thought about coming here to Norwescon was back in 2010, when the book Harmony, by my friend Project Itoh, was nominated for this award. I was unable to attend in person that year, but I watched on the Internet via USTREAM. It makes me very happy to be here myself this year.

その後たまたま旅行することになったSan Franciscoで、Japan Town の写真をtwitter に upしなかったら、Haikasoru の人たちと会うこともなく、この本の英訳を担当してくれた、テリー・ギャラハーと出会うこともなかったでしょう。
In the meantime, if I had not traveled to San Francisco, and if I had not uploaded to Twitter a photo I took of Japantown there, I would never have encountered the people of Haikasoru, and I would never have met Terry Gallagher, who translated this book.

ちなみに、この文章を翻訳してくれたのもテリーで、わたしには書いてある内容がわかりません。ここに、こう書いてあります。「テリーは素晴らしい人物です」。
I have to say, it is Terry who wrote this translation, and I cannot understand what is written here. Right here, what it says is: “Terry is an amazing human being.”

本当に有り難う、テリー。
Terry, thank you very much.

何よりも、わたしの本を読んでくださった方々に、ありがとうございます。
More than anything else, I also wish to thank all of you who have read my book.

日本には、翻訳されていない面白いSFがまだまだあります。ほとんどはわたしの本より難しく、面倒くさく、数学的に高度で、ストーリー性がなく、眠くなるようなものばかりです。嘘です。
There is a lot more very interesting science fiction in Japan that has not yet been translated. Most of it is much more difficult than my own book, harder to read, mathematically more contrived, with even less of a narrative thread, and even more soporific. I am kidding.

感激しています。有り難う御座いました。
I am very grateful for everything. Thank you all very much.

And here is a YouTube video of the ceremony, including readings by all the nominees. (Enjoe-san’s reading is the last of the bunch, if you want to skip forward.)

If you missed all the fun at Norweson, please know that you can still see Toh EnJoe in America. He has several reading events in New York, along with Hideo Furukawa, author of the Haikasoru hardcover Belka, Why Don’t You Bark?

[EVENT 1] Saturday, May 3, 2014, 2-4pm

Asia Society, 725 Park Avenue at 70th Street, New York
Monkey Business–Japan/America: Writers’ Dialogue
Dialogues between Hideo Furukawa and Laird Hunt, and between Toh EnJoe and Matthew Sharpe

Tickets: $10 Asia Society & PEN members; $12 students & seniors; $15 non-members.
http://asiasociety.org/new-york/events/monkey-business-japanamerica-writers-dialogue-0

[PEN info]
Matthew Sharpe and Laird Hunt join Hideo Furukawa and Toh EnJoe, two of Japan’s most exciting writers today, for another intriguing cross-cultural encounter. The conversation will be facilitated by Motoyuki Shibata and Ted Goossen, the editors/translators of Monkey Business, the acclaimed English-language anthology of newly translated Japanese writing, the fourth issue of which is scheduled to coincide with the Festival.

Co-sponsored by Asia Society, The Japan Foundation, A Public Space, and Monkey Business.

[EVENT 2] Monday, May 5, 2014, 12:50-2:05pm
Baruch College (Room to be fixed later)
One Bernard Baruch Way
(55 Lexington Ave at 24th St)
New York, NY 10010

Toh EnJoe, Hideo Furukawa, and Roland Kelts (commentator)
The Japanese writers discuss and read their work to Prof. Suzuki’s students.

[EVENT 3] Monday, May 5 2014, 7pm-
BookCourt, 163 Court Street, Brooklyn
Readings by EnJoe, Furukawa, Hunt, and Sharpe

Moderated by Kelts
http://bookcourt.com/

If you weren’t in Seattle, and won’t be in New York, you can at least play the home game. Several EnJoe stories have been translated into English and are available free online.

“Harlequin’s Butterfly” at Asymptote.

“The History and Decline of the Galactic Empire” at Words Without Borders.

“A to Z Theory” (from Self-Reference ENGINE) at Strange Horizons.

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Norwescon Cometh

This week is Norwescon, which we’ll be attending! Harmony has been nominated for the Philip K. Dick Award and fun will be had by all. I’ll even be participating in a few panels. Not all of them have to do with Japanese SF, but I’ll be pleased to answer questions about Japanese themes. I’ll likely miss my earliest panel at 11AM on Friday (I’ll be in the airport still!) but these I’ll show up for:

Friday 3pm Cascade 9 Editing the Novel
Editing a 5,000 word short story is one thing – how do you edit a 100,000 word novel? A panel of professional editors discuss their own experience in editing the novel – how to keep a work that long consistent, how to maintain energy and enthusiasm, how to liaise with the author over the long haul, and how to decide how long or short a novel should ultimately be.
Kelley Eskridge, Shannon Butcher, Lou Anders, Nick Mamatas, Jana Silverstein

Friday 7-8:30pm Grand 2 The Philip K. Dick Memorial Award Ceremony
Join us for the Philip K. Dick Memorial Award, presented to the best original paperback novel published in the USA for 2010.
William Sadorus, Gordon Van Gelder. And you can watch the presentations streaming live Ustream TV. I promise not to burst into tears if we lose. Or win.

Saturday Noon Cascade 7 Basic Writing Help – Horror Writing
How far is too far in a horror story? Should all the gore be included in your novel? Should you just go for everything you want or do you need to tame it down to find an audience?
Jenna M. Pitman, Stina Leicht, Jeff Burk, Nick Mamatas

Saturday 8pm Cascade 5&6 Not Another Monster Story
If you’re tired of reading the same zombie or vampire stories over and over again, our panelists will recommend other horror fiction you should be reading.
Jenna M. Pitman, Eric Morgret, Jeff Burk, Nick Mamatas

Saturday 10pm Cascade 10 Making It Out Of the Slush Pile
What are editors looking for; what makes a story stand out? What do writers need to do in those first ten pages to make their story or book catch the editor’s attention?
Jude-Marie Green, Patrick Swenson, Nick Mamatas, Lizzy Shannon

Hope to see some Seattle Haikasoru fans in attendance!

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