Skip to main content

Sheffield, Charles 1935-2002

SHEFFIELD, Charles 1935-2002

OBITUARY NOTICE—See index for CA sketch: Born June 25, 1935, in Hull, England; died of brain cancer November 2, 2002, in Rockville, MD. Physicist and author. Sheffield was a Hugo and Nebula Award-winning science-fiction novelist. He was educated at St. John's College, Cambridge, where he earned his master's degree in 1961 before coming to the United States to earn his doctorate at American University in 1965. He then embarked on a career as a physicist, working as chief scientist and board member for the Earth Satellite Corp. beginning in 1971, and as a consultant to the National Aeronautic and Space Administration. Sheffield's life took a dramatic turn after his first wife died in 1977. He turned his grief inward and decided to write down the stories dwelling within his mind. Sheffield began to write science fiction of the "hard" variety, meaning his stories were all based on scientific fact; one reason he turned to this genre was that he felt there was very little good science fiction available at the time. Sheffield was rewarded for his efforts with a large readership and he won several important science-fiction awards, including the John W. Campbell Award in 1992 for Brother to Dragons and the Hugo and Nebula awards in 1994 for his novella Georgia on My Mind. Over the course of his career he completed over two dozen novels, including My Brother's Keeper (1982), Godspeed (1993), Tomorrow and Tomorrow (1997), and The Spheres of Heaven (2001), as well as books in the "Behrooz Wolf" and "Heritage Universe" series and the juvenile series "Jupiter." Sheffield also published many short-story collections and works of nonfiction. Although for much of his later life Sheffield was despondent over the death of his first wife, and his second marriage ended in divorce, the last five years of his life were joyous due to his marriage with fellow science-fiction writer Nancy Kress.



Chicago Tribune, November 10, 2002, section 4, p. 11.

Independent (London, England), November 6, 2002, p. 16.

New York Times, November 9, 2002, p. A30.

Washington Post, November 3, 2002, p. C10.

Cite this article
Pick a style below, and copy the text for your bibliography.

  • MLA
  • Chicago
  • APA

"Sheffield, Charles 1935-2002." Contemporary Authors. . 25 Apr. 2019 <>.

"Sheffield, Charles 1935-2002." Contemporary Authors. . (April 25, 2019).

"Sheffield, Charles 1935-2002." Contemporary Authors. . Retrieved April 25, 2019 from

Learn more about citation styles

Citation styles gives you the ability to cite reference entries and articles according to common styles from the Modern Language Association (MLA), The Chicago Manual of Style, and the American Psychological Association (APA).

Within the “Cite this article” tool, pick a style to see how all available information looks when formatted according to that style. Then, copy and paste the text into your bibliography or works cited list.

Because each style has its own formatting nuances that evolve over time and not all information is available for every reference entry or article, cannot guarantee each citation it generates. Therefore, it’s best to use citations as a starting point before checking the style against your school or publication’s requirements and the most-recent information available at these sites:

Modern Language Association

The Chicago Manual of Style

American Psychological Association

  • Most online reference entries and articles do not have page numbers. Therefore, that information is unavailable for most content. However, the date of retrieval is often important. Refer to each style’s convention regarding the best way to format page numbers and retrieval dates.
  • In addition to the MLA, Chicago, and APA styles, your school, university, publication, or institution may have its own requirements for citations. Therefore, be sure to refer to those guidelines when editing your bibliography or works cited list.