An 'ineluctably masculine' Science Fiction writer, working in a CIA back office...
...and outed as 61-year-old woman called Alice Sheldon, in 1977.
Tiptree: No-One Else's Damn Secret But My Own - NEXT SHOW 11th Feb '24 6.30pm
A solo play about Science Fiction writer, James Tiptree Jr
'The phrasing and language of the text is delicious and, whilst theatrical flourish is minimal, there wasn’t a moment when my attention wavered.' Fringereview
"The writing uses humour to reveal moments that would break your heart if you weren’t chuckling. Rowe exercises good judgement about when to invite us to laugh, and when to pause for a moment of grief. She performs both ends of the emotional spectrum with equal deftness." Broadwaybaby
"Rowe’s a great storyteller and master of the pause where it’s most effective. Her performance is pacy and upbeat, sometimes very funny, as she transforms into the 70+ Tiptree..." Sussex playwrights
Previous performances: Barnstaple Fringe Theatre Fest 27th, 29th and 30th June 2019
Brighton Fringe Festival Sweet Venues 6th-12th May 2019
Stroud Theatre Festival Sept 2018
James Tiptree Jr was the pen name of Alice B Sheldon. An SF author, a scientist, a photo-intelligence officer, an environmentalist. She wrote science fiction during the last 20 years of her life, writing letters to her friends, Ursula Leguin, Frederick Pohl, Anne McCaffrey, Joanna Russ amongst others.
In spite of her depression, she filled her life with experimentation, creativity and high achievements. Some found her frustrating and difficult but many more loved her.
Having written as a man for many years, she was finally 'outed' when her mother (Mary Hastings Bradley) died. It caused a furore. Not only did some feel they had been lied to, but Alice struggled to find James Tiptree Jr's voice again.
In 1987, when her husband was old and nearly blind, and she had undergone various operations, including open heart surgery, she took a gun, shot her husband while he watched television, and then - a few hours later - turned it on herself.
Alice Sheldon won many awards including the Hugo, Nebula, Jupiter and World Fantasy Awards. She even had the accolade of an award named after her alter-ego, the James Tiptree Jr Award (now re-named The Otherwise Award - https://tiptree.org) for works of fiction that explore gender.
IF YOU WOULD LIKE TO BOOK 'TIPTREE', PLEASE CONTACT Jenny Rowe ON firstname.lastname@example.org. TIPTREE COVERS THEMES OF FEMINISM, SCIENCE FICTION, WRITING, MENTAL HEALTH, DEPRESSION, DEATH AND LOVE.
...has written this wonderfully detailed biography of Alice Sheldon which has been invaluable for my research.
Julie has also supplied some original recordings of Alice.