Octavia Butler would have turned 69 last week. Though she struggled to earn mainstream acceptance of her work early in her career, Butler is now considered one of the most influential and important Science Fiction writers of the late 20th century. She came up through the Clarion Workshop, where there is now a scholarship in her honor to support writers of color. From there she went on to write several novels, publishing her last book in 2005. Hailing originally from Pasadena, she found a home in the Pacific Northwest, dying in Lake Forest Park in 2006.