Bill Rotsler

(July 3, 1926 - October 18, 1997)

Bill Rotsler was a prominent LA fan, artist, movie cameraman, and writer.
He was Fan Guest of Honor at Torcon II in 1973]

Probably his most well-known contribution to fandom was as a cartoonist and fanartist, for which he won four Hugo Awards for Best fan Artist in 1975, 1979, 1996, and 1997 as well as the 1946 Best Fan Artist Retro Hugo. He was nominated for the 1951 Best Fan Artist Retro Hugo. His highly-recognizable artwork seemed ubiquitous, since he was prolific and freely provided it.

He was a member of LASFS and was involved in the semi-serious Tijuana in '69 Westercon bid.

His fanzines include Disturbing Element, Fumetti Report, The John D. Macdonald Quotebook, The Kong Papers (with Harlan Ellison), Kteic Magazine, Masque (for FAPA), Neophyte, Quotebook, Son of the Tattooed Dragon, Tapebook (for FAPA), The Tattooed Dragon, Unicorn, and Voyage.

He published A Fanzine for FAPA with John Trimble, Normandie Notes with Lee Jacobs, Wild Hair with F. T. Laney and Cyrus B. Condra, and ZIUQ with Jean Young and Jack Harness. He was a member of FAPA (and served as VP) and OMPA. He was an editor of the Insurgent fanzine, Homage a Burbee.

As a writer, his "Patron of the Arts" was nominated for both the 1972 Nebula award and the 1973 Best Novelette Hugo.

Additionally, he worked as a sculptor, a cameraman for Bill Warren, and helped produce a variety of pornographic films.

He was also known for "Rotsler's Rules" for con-going, which included:

  • If you kill it, you eat it. (a weapons policy)
  • Don't go to bed with anyone crazier than yourself.
  • No peanut butter. (a costuming rule)
  • The shoes gotta match.
  • There should be a weight limit for the purchase of leotards.
  • No costume is no costume (another costuming rule)

The Rotsler Award is given annually by SCIFI for fan artists. See Earl Kemp's tribute forgot, and never....

GoHships, Awards and Honors:

SF Encyclopedia entry