Tim Powers

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Tim Powers
SFeraKon Kontakt Eurocon Tim Powers 2804201 39 roberta f.jpg
Powers celebrating his 61st birthday in 2013
Born (1952-02-29) February 29, 1952 (age 71)
Buffalo, New York, U.S.
Pen nameWilliam Ashbless (joint)
Education California State University, Fullerton
Genre Adventure fiction, speculative fiction
Literary movement Steampunk
SpouseSerena Batsford
Powers at the annual ICon festival, a fan convention in Israel, October 2005 Tim Powers.jpg
Powers at the annual ICon festival, a fan convention in Israel, October 2005
Powers in the "Koloseum" at ICon 2005 Ikon-Powers.jpg
Powers in the "Koloseum" at ICon 2005

Timothy Thomas Powers (born February 29, 1952) [1] is an American science fiction and fantasy author. His first major novel was The Drawing of the Dark (1979), but the novel that earned him wide praise was The Anubis Gates (1983), which won the Philip K. Dick Award, and has since been published in many other languages. His other written work include Dinner at Deviant's Palace (1985), Last Call (1992), Expiration Date (1996), Earthquake Weather (1997), Declare (2000), and Three Days to Never (2006). Powers has won the World Fantasy Award twice for his critically acclaimed novels Last Call and Declare. His 1987 novel On Stranger Tides served as inspiration for the Monkey Island franchise of video games and was optioned for the fourth Pirates of the Caribbean film. [2]


Several of Powers' novels depict historical events being influenced by occult or supernatural factors. Regarding his 2001 novel Declare, Powers stated, "I made it an ironclad rule that I could not change or disregard any of the recorded facts, nor rearrange any days of the calendar – and then I tried to figure out what momentous but unrecorded fact could explain them all." [3]

Life and career

Powers was born in Buffalo, New York, but has lived in California since 1959. [4] He studied English Literature at Cal State Fullerton, and earned his B.A. in 1976. [5] It was there that he first met James Blaylock and K. W. Jeter, both of whom remained close friends and occasional collaborators; the trio have half-seriously referred to themselves as "steampunks" [6] in contrast to the prevailing cyberpunk genre of the 1980s. Powers and Blaylock invented the poet William Ashbless while they were at Cal State Fullerton. [7]

Another friend Powers first met during this period was noted science fiction writer Philip K. Dick; [8] the character named "David" in Dick's novel VALIS is based on Powers. When Do Androids Dream of Electric Sheep? was retitled Blade Runner to tie-in with the movie based on the novel, Dick dedicated it to Tim and Serena Powers.

Powers' first major novel was The Drawing of the Dark (1979), [4] but the novel that earned him wide praise was The Anubis Gates , which won the Philip K. Dick Award, and has since been published in many other languages.

Powers also teaches part-time in his role as Writer in Residence for the Orange County High School of the Arts and California School of the Arts in San Gabriel Valley in the Creative Writing Conservatory, as well as Chapman University, where Blaylock taught. He also taught part-time at the University of Redlands.

Powers and his wife, Serena Batsford Powers, currently live in Muscoy, California. He has frequently served as a mentor author as part of the Clarion science fiction/fantasy writer's workshop. [9]



Fault Lines series

  • Declare (2001): World Fantasy Award winner and Locus Fantasy nominee, 2001; [20] 2001 Nebula Award nominee [20]
  • Powers of Two (2004): Re-release of Skies Discrowned and Epitaph in Rust.
  • Hide Me Among the Graves (2012)
  • Medusa's Web (2016)

Vickery and Castine series

  • Alternate Routes (August 2018)
  • Forced Perspectives (March 2020)
  • Stolen Skies (January 2022) [22]
  • My Brother's Keeper (2023)

Short story collections


Critical studies and reviews of Powers' work

Salvage and Demolition

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  1. "WonderCon Special Guests," Comic-Con Magazine (Winter 2010), p. 20.
  2. 1 2 locusmag (September 21, 2009). "Powers Novel Optioned for New Pirates of the Carribean [sic] Movie". Locus Online. Retrieved September 14, 2021.
  3. Powells.com Interviews – Tim Powers Archived 2001-06-27 at the Wayback Machine
  4. 1 2 "The Powers of Fantastic Fiction | An IgnatiusInsight.com Interview with Tim Powers | September 7, 2005". www.ignatiusinsight.com. Retrieved September 14, 2021. https://web.archive.org/web/20060518042225/http://www.ignatiusinsight.com/features2005/tpowers_intvw_sept05.asp
  5. "Welcome to the College of the Arts at California State University, Fullerton". Archived from the original on February 3, 2016. Retrieved April 1, 2015.
  6. Nova Express, Volume 6, Number 1, "An Interview with Tim Powers", p. 9.
  7. Worden, Tim (April 9, 2012). "CSUF alumni inspire art exhibit". Daily Titan. Retrieved September 14, 2021.
  8. "Tim Powers: 'I don't have to make anything up'". the Guardian. June 3, 2011. Retrieved September 14, 2021.
  9. "The SF Site: An Interview With Tim Powers". www.sfsite.com. Retrieved September 14, 2021.
  10. "1983 Award Winners & Nominees". Worlds Without End. Retrieved May 5, 2009.
  11. "1984 Award Winners & Nominees". Worlds Without End. Retrieved May 5, 2009.
  12. 1 2 "1985 Award Winners & Nominees". Worlds Without End. Retrieved May 5, 2009.
  13. Langford, Dave (August 1987). "Critical Mass". White Dwarf . No. 92. Games Workshop. p. 11.
  14. "1988 Award Winners & Nominees". Worlds Without End. Retrieved May 5, 2009.
  15. "1990 Award Winners & Nominees". Worlds Without End. Retrieved May 5, 2009.
  16. "1993 Award Winners & Nominees". Worlds Without End. Retrieved May 5, 2009.
  17. 1 2 "1996 Award Winners & Nominees". Worlds Without End. Retrieved May 5, 2009.
  18. "1997 Award Winners & Nominees". Worlds Without End. Retrieved May 5, 2009.
  19. "1998 Award Winners & Nominees". Worlds Without End. Archived from the original on December 1, 2008. Retrieved May 5, 2009.
  20. 1 2 "2001 Award Winners & Nominees". Worlds Without End. Retrieved May 5, 2009.
  21. "2007 Award Winners & Nominees". Worlds Without End. Retrieved May 5, 2009.
  22. Powers, Tim (January 4, 2022). Stolen Skies. ISBN   9781982125837 . Retrieved January 21, 2020.
  23. Tim Powers title listing at the Internet Speculative Fiction Database
  24. Spratford, Becky. Booklist (review), v. 114, iss. 5, Nov 1, 2017, p. 27-228.
  25. Smith, Silver (2012). A Comprehensive Dual Bibliography of James P. Blaylock & Tim Powers. Dallas, Texas. ISBN   978-0-9767486-0-1 . Retrieved June 22, 2014.{{cite book}}: CS1 maint: location missing publisher (link)
  26. "Tim Powers – Salvage and demolition novella to be published in December". Upcoming4.me. Archived from the original on August 9, 2012. Retrieved August 2, 2012.
  27. Powers, Tim (2013). Salvage and Demolition. Subterranean Press. p. 155. ISBN   978-1-59606-515-4.