The Otherwise Award is pleased to announce that the award ceremony for the 2000 Otherwise Award winner(s) has been held, and the winners have received their award and accolades.

Award Information

Conference Information

  • Award Year: 2000
  • Award Year Number: Year 10
  • Conference: WisCon 25
  • Date: 27-05-2001
  • Location: Madison, WI

Award Winner

The 2000 jury chose 1 work for the Otherwise Award.

Wild Life by Molly Gloss (Simon & Schuster, 2000)

Charlotte Bridger Drummond, the heroine of this novel, is a free-thinking feminist who makes her living as a Jules-Vernesque fantasy writer. She lives both physically and symbolically on the fringes of society, in Western Oregon at the turn of the 20th century.

She rides a bicycle, smokes cigars, and dresses in mens clothes because they are comfortable. She is a staunch advocate for womens rights, with a sense of strength and humor that informs everything in her daily life and how she chooses to raise her five sons.

When she embarks on an adventure into the wilderness, a mission of mercy, she encounters danger at every turn. After a sexual assault by a logger, she becomes lost in the mountains in a terrifying storm, and is eventually rescued by a family of the legendary Sasquatch. She returns home with her outlook about everything profoundly altered by her encounters with the creatures, whose social roles begin to seem much more civilized than those of the logging camp or even her hometown.

Gloss is a brilliant stylist. In this novel she encompasses exquisitely researched historical fiction, a compelling mystery story, a wilderness adventure, and a fantastic journey with a tribe of mythic creatures. She manages to pull off that risky literary feat with such skill that by the end the novel becomes a meditative musing on wildness and human nature, told by one of the most memorable heroines in recent memory.

Work Information

Title: Wild LifeAuthor:
Publisher Name: Simon & SchusterCountry: USYear: 2000
Work Type: NovelOriginal Language: English
Molly Gloss – Wild Life
Molly Gloss – Wild Life

Award Honor List

The 2000 jury chose 11 works for the Honor List

Fidelity: A Primer,

This is a story about circumcision, a very gender related issue. It is one of the rare stores that explores gender issues by examining male body issues, and the choices they involve.

Diagram of Rapture,

A woman researching neurohormones discovers a brain chemical that naturally triggers sexual arousal. The resulting drug artificially does the same thing, affecting sexual interactions on a larger social scale, as well as hanging relationships within the scientist’s own family.

The Danish Girl, (Viking, US, 2000)

The fantasy elements in this novel are so slight as to be almost non-existent, but it was so compelling that the jury could not bear to leave it out. It is the story of Einar, a man in 1920s Denmark who turns himself into a woman, Lili, first through dress and mannerisms, then through lifestyle, and ultimately surgery. One of the most interesting aspects of the book is the portrayal of Greta, who is both Einar’s wife and Lili’s best friend, as she runs through a tremendous range of emotions when her husband and her life are transformed.

Ash: A Secret History, The Book of Ash: A Secret History, (Avon Eos, U.S., 1999)

This enormous novel (published as an 1100 page book in the UK and as a four volume work in the US) is set in an alternate 15th century. Its main characters are Ash, a female mercenary, and Flora/Florian, a woman who dresses as a man in order to study medicine. It is a vividly realized portrait of two powerful and unusual women surviving in a time that is openly hostile to them.

Soma, (Invisible Cities Press, 2000)

This is a powerful story about fitting in, about body image, and about how physical appearance influences what others think about a woman’s personality and sexuality.

The Glass Bottle Trick, Nalo Hopkinson (ed.) (Invisible Cities Press, 2000)

A seamless blend of fairy tale and Caribbean folklore, this chilling tale examines the roles of men and women in courtship, and how those roles change with marriage and pregnancy.

Midnight Robber, (Warner Aspect, U.S., 2000)

A rollicking Caribbean feminist tale about a little girl turned outlaw, it is a blend of action-adventure, science fiction, allegory, and myth that offers a unique intersection of gender, race, and identity issues. While not overtly about gender, the ideas and concepts of gender are at its very heart.

Perdido Street Station, , (Macmillan UK, UK, 2000)

An amazing read, a big epic wonder of a novel that constructs an urban fantasy world that is both Dickensian and futuristic. Its main themes are about inter-species relationships and what it is to be human, but there is a strong gender sub-theme that weaves its way through the city and the lives of its main characters.

Once on the Shores of the Stream Senegambia, (Invisible Cities Press, 2000)

A very scary story about colonization and gender. The author uses a future society to explore questions about what it means to be in a female body, and what the consequences are when a woman’s choices about her body are not under her control.

The Annunciate, (Avon Eos, U.S., 1999)

A fresh and interesting feminist take on the Garden of Eden myth, with new treatments of the familiar symbols of apple, gate, and garden.

Sea As Mirror, (HarperCollins Voyager, Australia, 2000)

Set in an overpopulated, environmentally precarious not-so-distant future, this novel deals with the theme of inter-species communication, and is a fascinating look at what it means to be the Other.



  • Donna Simone (chair)
  • Lisa Goldstein
  • Ellen Klages
  • Helen Merrick
  • Jeff Smith

Award Ceremony

The 2000 Otherwise Award was given to Molly Gloss at WisCon 25, May 27, 2001, in Madison, Wisconsin.