Personal and Family Timeline

  • 1850s: Mother’s ancestors arrived Illinois from Germany, Switzerland
  • 1860s: Father’s ancestors arrived northern Illinois from Isle of Man on grandfather’s side and Sweden on grandmother’s side
  • 1900: grandparents on mother’s side both born
  • 1902: grandparents on father’s side both born
  • 5 Sept 1933: father, Robert Harry Kelly, born Cambridge IL
  • 23 Jan 1934: mother, Helen Elizabeth Pierce, born Kewanee IL
  • 25 Jul 1953: parents married
  • Nov 1954: Parents moved to England; lived in Felixstowe; father a weatherman at R.A.F. Woodbridge
  • 30 Aug 1955: I was born, at Phyllis Memorial Home in Melton, England
  • 29 Mar 1957: Parents and Mark returned to US, settled eventually in Apple Valley CA; began school at Yuca Loma Elementary, Fall 1960
  • 26 Jul 1958: sister Susan born in Apple Valley
  • 20 Jan 1962: sister Lisa born in Apple Valley
  • Early 1962: Family moved to Santa Monica, 2335 21st Street, lived there 6 months; attended Grant Elementary
  • Summer 1962: Family moved to Reseda, 6516 Rhea Avenue, lived there 6 years
  • 16 Jan 1964: brother Kevin born, in Northridge CA
  • Finished elementary school at Vanalden Elementary, half 7th grade at Sequoia Junior High
    • 22 Nov 1963: JFK assassinated. I was in third grade. They sent us home early
  • Fall 1965: discovered Lost in Space part way through 1st season
  • Fall 1966: Star Trek debuted, watched it from the beginning
  • Early 1968: Family moved initially to Cambridge, IL, to live with my grandfather and finish school year
  • Summer 1968: Family settled in Glen Ellyn, IL. Live there 3 years; attended 8th, 9th, 10th grades, at Glencrest Junior High and Glenbard East High School
    • Mid-1968: saw 2001: A Space Odyssey twice in theaters (months after debut, once it was in general release); had read Clarke’s novel version
    • 20 Jul 1969: Apollo 11 landed on the moon; we watched the grainy images on our black and white TV
  • Summer 1971: Family moved back to California; after several week layover in Apple Valley, family settled in Sepulveda (now North Hills) at 9340 Hayvenhurst Ave.
  • Finished 11th and 12th grades at James Monroe High School; finished in top 3 on PSAT; attended UCLA, graduated with B.A. in math Spring 1977
  • Jan 1978 – mid 1980: worked for LA County Department of Public Social Services (i.e. welfare office)
  • Feb 1978: Parents, Lisa, and Kevin moved to Tullahoma TN; Sue and I stayed in LA, living on our own.
  • Fall 1980 – late 1982: attended Cal State University Northridge (CSUN) pursuing grad degree in computer science
  • Jun 1982: began professional job at Rocketdyne as software engineer, continued 30 ½ years
    • The site was owned by Rockwell International, then Boeing, then United Technologies/Pratt & Whitney, over that time, and then by Aerojet just after I was laid off in late 2012
    • Supported Space Shuttle Main Engine software in the 1980s; International Space Station electrical power system test procedures in the early ‘90s; then supported implementation of industry best practices via CMMI for over a decade; and at the end, support for Pratt & Whitney’s next generation jet engine (for passenger planes)
    • 28 Jan 1986: shuttle Challenger exploded just after launch; I was home sick with a cold and saw it on TV
    • 1 Feb 2003: shuttle Columbia disintegrated on re-entry; it was a Saturday morning and I had just turned on the TV
    • Laid off in November 2012
  • Lived in single room apartment in Northridge, 1978-1984; shared apartment in North Hollywood 1984-1985; lived alone in apartment in Tarzana 1985-1989; shared house in Granada Hills with Larry Kramer (met 1983) 1989-1998, until I bought him out; remained in Granada Hills until 2003.
  • Apr 1988: Began short fiction review column for Locus Magazine, after a decade or more of sending them letters; continued monthly (with a one-year break) until late 2001
  • With creds from my Locus column, attended SF conventions 3 or 4 or sometimes more a year, and met many SF professionals, for the following 20 years
  • 1990: First trip to Europe, for Worldcon in The Hague; later trips to Europe 1993, 1995, 2005, 2013, 2016, 2019
  • Apr 1997: Launched online version of Locus Magazine, Locus Online, and ran it single-handedly for 20 years, posting samples of the magazine and original material, until the magazine staff took it over in Oct 2017.
    • 29 Jun 2000: Posted initial SF Awards Index on Locus Online
  • 26 May 2001: Met Yeong Wang. Moved together to Woodland Hills Aug 2003.
  • 11 Sep 2001: Terrorist attacks in NYC; it was a Tuesday, I was getting ready for work and saw it on TV. We went to work anyway.
  • Sep 2002: Won Hugo Award for Best Website at Worldcon in San Jose
  • 5 Jul 2012: Posted much-expanded Science Fiction Awards Database at its own URL, maintaining it since, with expansion projects in work
  • Jan 2015: Moved to the hills of Oakland CA after Yeong found new job at Novartis in San Carlos
  • Jan 2015: Posted initial draft of “Provisional Conclusions” with plans to write a book about the intersection of science fiction with ancient and contemporary knowledge. Still in work.
  • Jan 2020: Began biweekly reviews at Black Gate
  • Mar 2020: Coronavirus pandemic spread across world