About

March 2018:

I’m a retired aerospace software engineer who’s lived almost his entire life in Southern California (after being born in England, and with excursions in my teenage years to rural and suburban Illinois), where I worked 30 years full-time for a company called Rocketdyne, owned over that period by a succession of corporations: Rockwell International, then Boeing, then Pratt & Whitney. Currently it’s owned by Aerojet and known as Aerojet Rocketdyne. I wrote, refined, and maintained software for the Space Shuttle Main Engines, for the International Space Station power distribution system, and for other projects. For much my career I specialized in process improvement, including statistical process control and process maturity standards established by the Capability Maturity Model Integrated (CMMI).

More personally, I’ve followed literary science fiction since roughly age 12, and have contributed reviews, websites, and indexes over the past 30 years. From 1988 to 2001 I wrote a monthly review column for Locus, the trade magazine of the science fiction publishing industry founded by Charles N. Brown in 1968. I reviewed short fiction in magazines and anthologies. In 1997 I established Locus‘s website, Locus Online, running it single handedly for 20 years, posting sample content from the magazine plus additional content acquired and edited by me (in particular, film reviews by Gary Westfahl, and my own weekly and semi-monthly listings of notable new books and magazines). I won a Hugo Award for the site in 2002, when the World Science Fiction Convention included a special one-time Hugo category that year for Best Web Site. (The photo at the link, and below, shows me, standing third from left, next to two of the actors from the first Lord of the Rings movie, which also won a Hugo that year. Also in the photo are Ellen Datlow, Charles N. Brown, Vernor Vinge (far right), and Neil Gaiman (center below).)

In 2000 I established a science fiction awards database on the Locus Online site and in 2012 migrated it to its own domain at sfadb.com. Locus Online was redesigned and taken over by the Locus Magazine staff in October 2017, though I still contribute some content. Since 2015 I’ve lived with my partner in Oakland Hills.

Personal History

  • Genealogical Post: My Family Trees
    • My branch of the Kelly family derives from the Isle of Man, an island between England and Ireland. My father’s ancestors arrived in northwest Illinois in 1868, and mixed with the Swedish colony already established there. My mother’s ancestors came to the US as early as 1830 from Germany; her line is a mix of French, German, English, and Swiss.
  • Personal History, part 1
    • Short narrative summary of the above, leading to my birth in England and then the family’s relocation to California.
  • Personal History, part 2
    • Why we settled in Apple Valley, CA, the place I still most closely associate with as home.
  • Personal History, part 3 (photos)
    • I visited Felixstowe, the town where my parents lived when I was born, in 1990 and took some pics.
  • Aside: Thoughts about Family Pics
    • Comments about the extent of my father’s photos, which I am gradually exploring and scanning.

In addition to these, a separate Photos page links sets of old family photos scanned, a project still in work.