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Tuttle, Lisa

Entry updated 30 October 2023. Tagged: Author.

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(1952-    ) US-born author, in the UK from late 1980, married to Christopher Priest 1981-1987. An early member of the Clarion Science Fiction Writers' Workshop, she very rapidly established her name as a writer in short forms, beginning with her first story, "Stranger in the House", for Robin Scott Wilson's Clarion II (anth 1972), and winning the 1974 John W Campbell Award for Best New Writer. Her stories very frequently make quietly devastating use of genre devices – often those associated with Horror – to convey Feminist lessons about the relationships between men and women (see Women in SF), though she tends to allow the political implications of these lessons to reside, tacitly, within her texts. Some of her better stories have been assembled in A Nest of Nightmares (coll 1986), A Spaceship Built of Stone and Other Stories (coll 1987), Memories of the Body: Tales of Desire and Transformation (coll 1992). Ghosts and Other Lovers (coll 2002), Stranger in the House: The Collected Short Supernatural Fiction, Volume One (coll 2010) projected first volume of a collected edition, and Objects in Dreams (coll 2012). She has published some nonfantastic work, primarily for children, as by Lucy Daniels and Laura Waring; Horrorscopes: Virgo: Snake Inside (1995) as by Maria Palmer is a Tie to the Horrorscopes Shared World.

Tuttle's first novel, Windhaven (May 1975 Analog as "The Storms of Windhaven"; exp 1981) with George R R Martin, is sf, a Planetary Romance depicting life on a lost colony planet (see Colonization of Other Worlds; Long Night), whose feudal culture is focused on Flying via the use of artificial (but functional) wings constructed from fragments of metal that survived the initial crash of the colony ship; the short magazine version, "The Storms of Windhaven", won a Locus Award as best novella. Most of her subsequent books – like Familiar Spirit (1983), Gabriel (1987), Lost Futures (1992), whose heroine is thrust into several Alternate Histories, and The Mysteries (2005), a highly competent (if narrow) examination some interactions between Faerie and the mundane – are fantasies with strong elements of horror, idiomatically and cleanly told, in a level and foreboding voice, and tending to depict worlds which, in visual terms, seem both sinister and washed. More and more, though commercial sagacity seems sometimes to have guided her tongue, she has given a sense of having revelations in store. Tuttle refused a 1981 short-story Nebula for "The Bone Flute" (May 1981 F&SF); the refusal was not honoured by SFWA, which had the award accepted on her behalf. "In Translation" (in Zenith, anth 1989, ed David S Garnett) won a BSFA Award for short fiction. Her Encyclopedia of Feminism (1986), now an historical document, would if revised be again a significant reference source for studies of Feminism and Gender. [JC]

see also:; Eschatology; Gothic SF.

Lisa Gracia Tuttle

born Houston, Texas: 16 September 1952



Jesperson and Lane

individual titles

  • Windhaven (New York: Timescape Books, 1981) with George R R Martin [first section appeared May 1975 Analog as "The Storms of Windhaven": second section appeared January-February 1980 Analog as "One-Wing": hb/Vincent Di Fate]
  • Catwitch (Garden City, New York: Doubleday and Company, 1983) [illus/hb/Una Woodruff]
  • Angela's Rainbow (London: Paper Tiger, 1983) [hb/Michael Johnson]
  • Familiar Spirit (New York: Berkley Books, 1983) [pb/]
  • Gabriel (London: Severn House, 1987) [hb/Trevor Newman]
  • Lost Futures (New York: Dell/Abyss, 1992) [pb/David O'Connor]
  • Horrorscopes: Virgo: Snake Inside (London: Mammoth, 1995) as by Maria Palmer [Horrorscopes: pb/]
    • Snake Inside (London: Mammoth, 1999) as by Lisa Tuttle [vt of the above under own name: pb/]
  • The Pillow Friend (Stone Mountain, Georgia: White Wolf Publishing, 1996) [hb/Pamela Dean]
  • Panther in Argyll (London: Mammoth, 1996) [pb/]
  • The Mysteries (New York: Bantam Spectra, 2005) [hb/John Taylor Dismukes and Mark Roland]
  • The Silver Bough (New York: Bantam Spectra, 2006) [hb/John Taylor Dismukes]

collections and stories


works as editor


previous versions of this entry

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