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Catherine Asaro was born in Oakland, California and grew up in El Cerrito, just north of Berkeley. She received her Ph.D. in Chemical Physics and MA in Physics, both from Harvard, and a BS with Highest Honors in Chemistry from UCLA. Among the places she has done research are the University of Toronto in Canada, the Max Planck Institut für Astrophysik in Germany, and the Harvard-Smithsonian Center for Astrophysics. Her research involved using quantum theory to describe the behavior of atoms and molecules. Catherine was a physics professor until 1990, when she established Molecudyne Research, which she currently runs.
Catherine Asaro's fiction is a successful blend of hard science fiction, romance, and exciting space adventure. Her novel, The Quantum Rose, won the Nebula Award for best novel of 2001. She is a three-time winner of the Romantic Times Book Club award for "Best Science Fiction Novel." To date, she has published 15 novels, 11 of which belong to her Saga of the Skolian Empire. The latest, Schism (December 2004), is a great introduction to the Skolian Saga, as it depicts the earlier years of Sauscony Valdoria, the heroine of Primary Inversion and Radiant Seas.
In addition to this saga, she also writes a romantic fantasy series and near future thrillers. "Moonglow," her contribution to the Charmed Destinies fantasy anthology, won the Sapphire Award for Science Fiction Romance in the Short Fiction Category.
Catherine has also published short fiction in Analog magazine and in several anthologies, as well as reviews, nonfiction essays, and scientific papers in refereed academic journals. Her paper "Complex Speeds and Special Relativity," which appeared in the April 1996 issue of The American Journal of Physics, forms the basis for some of the science in her novels.
When not writing and making appearances at conferences, Catherine also serves as the president of Science Fiction and Fantasy Writers of America, Inc. (SFWA).
A former ballerina, Catherine Asaro has performed with ballets and in musicals on both coasts and in Ohio. In the 1980's she was a principal dancer and artistic director of the Mainly Jazz Dancers and the Harvard University Ballet. After she graduated, her undergraduate students took over Mainly Jazz and made it into an organization at the college.
Her husband is John Kendall Cannizzo, an astrophysicist at NASA. They have one daughter, a ballet dancer and mathematician.
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