Virginia Heinlein

Virginia "Ginny" Heinlein (April 22, 1916 – January 18, 2003), born Virginia Doris Gerstenfeld, was an American chemist, biochemist, engineer, and the third wife of Robert A. Heinlein, a prominent and successful author often considered as one of the "Big Three" of science fiction (along with Isaac Asimov and Arthur C. Clarke).

Virginia Heinlein
Heinlein Tahiti 2
Robert and Virginia Heinlein in Tahiti, 1980.
Virginia Doris Gerstenfeld

April 22, 1916
Brooklyn, New York, United States
DiedJanuary 18, 2003 (aged 86)
Florida, United States
EducationNew York University [1]
OccupationChemist, biochemist, lieutenant commander USN [2]
Known forFounder of The Heinlein Society
Robert A. Heinlein (m. 1948–1988)

Life and career

Born to George and Jeanne Gerstenfeld, Virginia was raised in Brooklyn with her brother Leon. A redheaded organic chemist and biochemist, she served as an inspiration for many of the active and talented red-haired women in Heinlein's stories.[3] She met Robert when they both worked at the Naval Air Experimental Station in Philadelphia when she was a lieutenant in the WAVES in the U.S. Navy in World War II. She moved to Los Angeles in 1946 to take an advanced degree, where Heinlein had already relocated after the war. They married on October 21, 1948 in Raton, New Mexico. Shortly thereafter they moved to Colorado, but in 1965 her health was chronically affected by the altitude, so the couple moved to Bonny Doon, California.

Prior to a trip to the Soviet Union, where they happened to be when Francis Gary Powers was shot down, Virginia learned to speak Russian, which proved invaluable in talking with local citizens. She was highly esteemed among her husband's fans for her exceptional willingness to correspond with them, a practice that continued until her last days, with activity in a Usenet newsgroup devoted to Heinlein fans. She was touched when other users sent her Mother's Day greetings as an homage to her bestowing the title of "Heinlein's Children" on Robert's fans worldwide.

After Robert's death in 1988, she moved from California to Florida,[4] where she edited a collection of his letters and writings, published in 1989 as Grumbles from the Grave.[5] She authorised the publication of Tramp Royale[6] and longer editions of previously published works Stranger in a Strange Land,[7] The Puppet Masters, and Red Planet. She established a literary society in her husband's name, the Heinlein Society.[1]


  1. ^ a b James, PhD., Robert (2001–2007). "Biographies of Robert and Virginia Heinlein". The Heinlein Society. Retrieved 2007-10-18.
  2. ^ Woo, Elaine (26 January 2003). "Virginia Heinlein, 86; Wife, Muse and Literary Guardian of Celebrated Science Fiction Writer". Retrieved 4 June 2018 – via LA Times.
  3. ^ Woo, Elaine (2003-01-26), "Virginia Heinlein, 86; Wife, Muse and Literary Guardian of Celebrated Science Fiction Writer (free abstract)", Los Angeles Times, pp. B14
  4. ^ Drum, Kevin (2003-01-20), "Virginia Heinlein", The Washington Monthly
  5. ^ "BOOK REVIEW : A Shallow Peek Into a Sci-Fi Grand Master". Retrieved 2 August 2013.
  6. ^ "Tramp Royale". Retrieved 2 August 2013.
  7. ^ "Robert Heinlein's softer side". Retrieved 2 August 2013.

External links

19th World Science Fiction Convention

The 19th World Science Fiction Convention (Worldcon), also known as Seacon, was held September 2–4, 1961, at the Hyatt House Hotel in Seattle, Washington, United States. The convention chair was Wally Weber.The guest of honor at the 19th Worldcon was Robert A. Heinlein, who gave a speech titled "The Future Revisited". He was previously the guest of honor at the 3rd Worldcon and would again be the guest of honor at the 34th Worldcon. The Toastmaster was Harlan Ellison.

Arthur M. Dula

Arthur M. ("Art") Dula (born February 6, 1947 in Arlington, Virginia) is a space lawyer, a patent attorney, the literary executor for major science fiction author Robert A. Heinlein and chairman, founder of the private spaceflight company, Excalibur Almaz.

Art Dula's law practice focuses on aerospace and intellectual property law, technology licensing, business start-up and development, patents, contracts, corporations, securities, copyrights and trademarks. His clients include U.S. and Russian aerospace firms. He is admitted to practice before the U.S. Supreme Court, the U.S. Patent and Trademark Office, and Texas State and Federal Courts. He is also a registered broker with US State Department, Bureau of Political-Military Affairs, Office of Defense Trade Controls.

Since 1980, Art Dula has co-founded several aerospace companies. Eagle Aerospace provided engineering expertise for NASA and U.S. aerospace companies. Space Services, Inc., secured the first US regulatory approval of a private space launch. In 1982, it launched the first private U.S. space vehicle, the Conestoga, from Matagorda Island, Texas. Spacehab, Inc., builds payload bay Spacehab modules for the U.S. space shuttle. Space Commerce Corporation was the first U.S.-Russian aerospace joint venture. It sold a Soviet Proton rocket launch to Hughes Aerospace in 1987, and marketed remote sensing radar images. Tethers Unlimited, Inc., won seven patents on space tether systems, and secured over $2 million in research contracts. Starcraft Boosters, Inc., has contracts with US Air Force and NASA for the StarBooster launching system. Excalibur Almaz, Ltd., owns several Almaz Space System space capsules and space stations, and intends to begin launching its spacecraft as early as 2013.

Art Dula is literary executor for the major science fiction writer, Robert A. Heinlein. He also serves as Trustee of the Robert A. and Virginia Heinlein Prize Trust. In 2006, the Trust awarded the first Heinlein Prize, in the amount of $500,000, to Peter Diamandis, for outstanding personal initiative and significant progress in commercial space activities.He has taught space law for the University of Houston, and was a Visiting Distinguished Professor of Law, University of Akron. He consulted NASA on the space shuttle payload contract, and served as legal advisor to the U.S. Congress, Office of Technology Assessment. He has been awarded the Space Pioneer Award from the National Space Society, and the Gagarin Medal from the Russian Federation of Cosmonautics.

Brad Linaweaver

Bradford Swain Linaweaver (born September 1, 1952) is an American science fiction writer. Linaweaver has original story credits on a number of films, including The Brain Leeches and Jack-O for Fred Olen Ray. He also has story credits in The Boneyard Collection and Space Babes Meet the Monsters.

His long association with independent film has led to his being an executive producer on a number of films. The most prominent is Fred Olen Ray's Supershark.

The novella version of his novel Moon of Ice was a Nebula Award finalist and the novel length version won a Prometheus Award. The novel carries endorsements from Robert A. Heinlein, Isaac Asimov, Ray Bradbury, and William F. Buckley, Jr.His other novels include Sliders (based on the television series), The Land Beyond Summer, four Doom novels with Dafydd ab Hugh, three Battlestar Galactica novels with actor Richard Hatch, and Anarquia with J. Kent Hastings which has sparked much discussion and review on various web sites. He has also starred in, and written, The Brain Leeches, directed by Fred Olen Ray.

Linaweaver's 1995 story collaboration with Victor Koman, "The Light That Blinds", features an occult battle between Aleister Crowley and Adolf Hitler. In 2004, he co-authored Worlds of Tomorrow with Forrest J Ackerman, a hardcover coffee table book that spotlights science fiction cover art from the Golden Age with full color reproduction and commentary from the authors.

Grumbles from the Grave

Grumbles from the Grave is a posthumous 1989 autobiography of science fiction author Robert A. Heinlein collated by his wife Virginia Heinlein from his notes and writings.

Heinlein Centennial

The Heinlein Centennial Convention was held in Kansas City from July 6 through July 8, 2007, coincident with the 100th anniversary of Robert A. Heinlein's birth in Butler, Missouri on July 7, 1907. The Guests of Honor were Robert and Virginia Heinlein, in absentia and deceased. The keynote speakers were:

Michael D. Griffin, administrator of NASA

Brian Binnie, pilot of SpaceShipOne on its X-Prize-winning flight

Peter Diamandis, founder of the X-Prize

Jeff Greason, CEO of XCOR Aerospace

Patricia G. Smith, Associate Administrator for Commercial Space Transportation within the Federal Aviation AdministrationMany notable science fiction authors were also in attendance, including Spider and Jeanne Robinson, David Gerrold, Frederik Pohl, and John Scalzi.

The event was held in the adjoining Crown Center Hyatt Regency and Westin hotels, which are linked by a Habitrail-like transparent pedestrian tube called "The Link".

Heinlein Prize for Advances in Space Commercialization

The Heinlein Prize for Advances in Space Commercialization, generally known as the Heinlein Prize, was founded in 1988 to reward individuals who make practical contributions to the commercialization of space. The Heinlein Prize, offers a cash award of $500,000 to one or more individuals for practical accomplishments in the field of commercial space activities rewarded by the International Aeronautical Congress in Bremen, Germany.Trustees for the award emphasize that the prize, which will be given as often as annually, is for effort by an individual or group of people, not government or corporate sponsored activities, and is intended to be worldwide in scope. The prize is awarded in July.

The Heinlein Prize honors the memory of Robert A. Heinlein, one of the most popular science fiction writers of the 20th century. The trust was established soon after his death in 1988 by his widow, Virginia Gerstenfeld Heinlein, whose estate will fund the prize.

Heinlein Society

The Heinlein Society is a United States organization devoted to the study and promotion of the late American science fiction author Robert Heinlein.

The Heinlein Society was founded in 1997 with the assistance of Robert Heinlein's widow, Virginia Heinlein, and is a 501(c)3 non-profit corporation established in California. The "semi-scholarly" society exists to "preserve the legacy of renowned writer Robert Anson Heinlein left"; according to it, it accomplishes this through promoting "Heinlein blood drives", distributing copies of Heinlein's works to U.S. military personnel, awarding scholarships, and promoting scholarly research on Heinlein. The society also sponsors the Robert A. Heinlein Award.In 2016 the organization paid for a bronze bust of Heinlein for display in the Missouri State Capitol, following the author's induction into the Hall of Famous Missourians.

Heinlein juveniles

Heinlein juveniles are the young adult novels written by Robert A. Heinlein. The twelve novels were published by Scribner's between 1947 and 1958, which together tell a single story of space exploration. A thirteenth, Starship Troopers, was submitted to Scribner's but rejected and instead published by Putnam. A fourteenth novel, Podkayne of Mars, is often listed as a "Heinlein juvenile", although Heinlein himself did not consider it to be one.

In addition to the juveniles, Heinlein wrote two short stories about Scouting for boys and three short stories with Puddin', a teenage female protagonist, for girls.


Henlein or Heinlein is a German surname. Notable people with the surname include:

Robert A. Heinlein (1907–1988), American science fiction writer

Virginia Heinlein (1916–2003), third wife of Robert A. Heinlein

Baron Max Hussarek von Heinlein (1865–1935), Austrian politician, Prime Minister of Austria in 1918

Klaus Heinlein (born 1953), German former footballer

Konrad Henlein (1898–1945), Nazi German politician

Peter Henlein (1479/80–1542), German locksmith and watchmaker, often considered the inventor of the portable timepiece

Martina Heinlein, a field hockey player in the 2008 Summer Olympics

In the Courts of the Crimson Kings

In the Courts of the Crimson Kings is a 2008 alternate history science fiction novel by American writer S. M. Stirling.

J. Neil Schulman

J. Neil Schulman should not be confused with fellow Prometheus Award winner, L. Neil SmithJoseph Neil Schulman (; born April 16, 1953) is an American novelist who wrote Alongside Night (published 1979) and The Rainbow Cadenza (published 1983) which both received the Prometheus Award, a libertarian science fiction award. His third novel, Escape from Heaven, was also a finalist for the 2002 Prometheus Award.


"Moonbat" is a pejorative political epithet used in United States politics, referring to liberals, progressives, or leftists (especially the far-left), a possible parallel to the pejorative "Wingnut" attributed to American conservatives, and right wing politics.

Requiem (book)

This book also contains the short story "Requiem" by Heinlein. There are other uses of "requiem".Requiem: New Collected Works by Robert A. Heinlein and Tributes to the Grand Master (1992, ISBN 0-312-85168-5, TOR Books) is a retrospective on Robert A. Heinlein (1907–1988), after his death, edited by Yoji Kondo.

Robert A. Heinlein

Robert Anson Heinlein (; July 7, 1907 – May 8, 1988) was an American science-fiction writer and aeronautical engineer. Often called the "dean of science fiction writers", He was among the first to emphasize scientific accuracy in his fiction, and was thus a pioneer of the subgenre of hard science fiction. His work continues to have an influence on the science-fiction genre, and on modern culture more generally.

Heinlein became one of the first American science-fiction writers to break into mainstream magazines such as The Saturday Evening Post in the late 1940s. He was one of the best-selling science-fiction novelists for many decades, and he, Isaac Asimov, and Arthur C. Clarke are often considered the "Big Three" of English-language science fiction authors. Notable Heinlein works include Stranger in a Strange Land, Starship Troopers (which helped mould the space marine and mecha archetypes) and The Moon Is a Harsh Mistress. His work sometimes had controversial aspects, such as plural marriage in The Moon is a Harsh Mistress, militarism in Starship Troopers and technologically-competent women characters that were strong and independent, yet often stereotypically feminine - such as Friday.

A writer also of numerous science-fiction short stories, Heinlein was one of a group of writers who came to prominence under the editorship (1937-1971) of John W. Campbell at Astounding Science Fiction magazine, though Heinlein denied that Campbell influenced his writing to any great degree.

Within the framework of his science-fiction stories, Heinlein repeatedly addressed certain social themes: the importance of individual liberty and self-reliance, the obligation individuals owe to their societies, the influence of organized religion on culture and government, and the tendency of society to repress nonconformist thought. He also speculated on the influence of space travel on human cultural practices.

Heinlein was named the first Science Fiction Writers Grand Master in 1974. Four of his novels won Hugo Awards. In addition, fifty years after publication, seven of his works were awarded "Retro Hugos"—awards given retrospectively for works that were published before the Hugo Awards came into existence. In his fiction, Heinlein coined terms that have become part of the English language, including "grok", "waldo", and "speculative fiction", as well as popularizing existing terms like "TANSTAAFL", "pay it forward", and "space marine". He also anticipated mechanical computer-aided design with "Drafting Dan" and described a modern version of a waterbed in his novel The Door into Summer, though he never patented nor built one. In the first chapter of the novel Space Cadet he anticipated the cell-phone, 35 years before Motorola invented the technology. Several of Heinlein's works have been adapted for film and television.

Robert A. Heinlein Award

The Robert A. Heinlein Award was established by the Heinlein Society in 2003 "for outstanding published works in science fiction and technical writings to inspire the human exploration of space." It is named for prolific science fiction author Robert A. Heinlein and is administered by the Baltimore Science Fiction Society. It is generally given annually to one or more recipients.

The Robert A. Heinlein Award is a sterling silver medallion bearing the image of Robert A. Heinlein, as depicted by artist Arlin Robbins. The medallion is matched with a red-white-blue lanyard.

Robert A. Heinlein bibliography

The science fiction writer Robert A. Heinlein (1907–1988) was productive during a writing career that spanned the last 49 years of his life; the Robert A. Heinlein bibliography includes 32 novels, 59 short stories and 16 collections published during his life. Four films, two TV series, several episodes of a radio series, and a board game derive more or less directly from his work. He wrote a screenplay for one of the films. Heinlein edited an anthology of other writers' SF short stories.

Three non-fiction books and two poems have been published posthumously. One novel has been published posthumously and another, an unusual collaboration, was published in 2006. Four collections have been published posthumously.

Heinlein's fictional works can be found in the library under PS3515.E288, or under Dewey 813.54. Known pseudonyms include Anson MacDonald (7 times), Lyle Monroe (7), John Riverside (1), Caleb Saunders (1), and Simon York (1). All the works originally attributed to MacDonald, Saunders, Riverside and York, and many of the works originally attributed to Lyle Monroe, were later reissued in various Heinlein collections and attributed to Heinlein.

Stranger in a Strange Land

Stranger in a Strange Land is a 1961 science fiction novel by American author Robert A. Heinlein. It tells the story of Valentine Michael Smith, a human who comes to Earth in early adulthood after being born on the planet Mars and raised by Martians. The novel explores his interaction with—and eventual transformation of—Terran culture.

The title "Stranger in a Strange Land" is an allusion to the phrase in Exodus 2:22.

According to Heinlein, the novel's working title was The Heretic.

In 1991, three years after Heinlein's death, his widow, Virginia Heinlein, arranged to have the original unedited manuscript published. Critics disagree about which version is superior, though Heinlein preferred the original manuscript and described the heavily edited version as "telegraphese".In 2012, the US Library of Congress named it one of 88 "Books that Shaped America".

The Number of the Beast (novel)

The Number of the Beast is a science fiction novel by American writer Robert A. Heinlein, published in 1980. The first (paperback) edition featured a cover and interior illustrations by Richard M. Powers. Excerpts from the novel were serialized in the magazine Omni (1979 October, November).

Tomorrow, the Stars

Tomorrow, the Stars is an anthology of speculative fiction short stories, presented as edited by American author Robert A. Heinlein and published in 1952.

Heinlein wrote a six-page introduction in which he discussed the nature of science fiction, speculative fiction, escapist stories, and literature. None of the stories had previously been anthologized.

According to science fiction historian Bud Webster, Heinlein's introduction and name on the book were his sole contributions; the actual selection of the stories, and the work involved in arranging for their publication, was done by Frederik Pohl and Judith Merril. This is confirmed by Virginia Heinlein in Grumbles from the Grave (without mentioning Pohl or Merril) and by Pohl in chapter 6 of his autobiography, The Way the Future Was. However, the correspondence between Heinlein and Merril, now housed in Library and Archives Canada, shows that while Heinlein claimed to be uninvolved in the editing, he certainly had some input into the structure and contents of the book:

I am the lowest form of literary prostitute, swindling the public into thinking that I have done a piece of editing which I aint done and aint going to do ... On the issue of whether or not the volume should have a theme: I don’t give a hoot about a theme; I’d like to see stories picked for highest possible entertainment value. I can’t think of any other real excuse for putting out another S-F anthology ... I'll be of more help, I hope, a month from now when I can get at my files of magazines and books.

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