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2024 Lifetime Achievement Awards


The Horror Writers Association (HWA) is pleased to announce the recipients of its Lifetime Achievement Award. These will be presented on June 1st, 2024, during the Bram Stoker Awards® Presentation at StokerCon®2024 in San Diego, CA.

The recipients of the HWA’s Lifetime Achievement Award for 2024 are: Steve Rasnic Tem, Mort Castle, and Cassandra Peterson.


The Lifetime Achievement Award is presented periodically to an individual whose work has substantially influenced the horror genre. While this award is often presented to a writer, it may also be given for influential accomplishments in other creative fields.

The Lifetime Achievement Award is the most prestigious of all awards presented by HWA. It does not merely honor the superior achievement embodied in a single work. Instead, it is an acknowledgment of superior achievement in an entire career.


About the Horror Writers Association

The Horror Writers Association (HWA) is a nonprofit organization of writers and publishing professionals around the world, dedicated to promoting dark literature and the interests of those who write it. Founded in the late 1980s, it now has close to 2000 members around the world and is the oldest and most respected professional organization for creators of horror fiction. The HWA encourages public interest in and appreciation of horror and dark fantasy literature and hosts an annual professional conference, StokerCon. HWA is also dedicated to recognizing and promoting diversity in the horror genre and practices a strict anti-harassment policy at all of its events. Please direct any questions regarding these awards to the Vice President of HWA. For more information about the Horror Writers Association, please visit For more information about the Bram Stoker Awards® and our other awards, please visit


MORT CASTLE – A former stage hypnotist, folksinger, and teacher

(every level from grade to grad school), Mort Castle has been a

publishing writer since 1967, with hundreds of stories, articles,

comics, and books published in a dozen languages. Castle has

won three Bram Stoker Awards®, two Black Quill awards, the

Golden Bot (Wired Magazine), and has been nominated for

The Audie, The Shirley Jackson award, the International Horror

Guild award and the Pushcart Prize. In 2000, the Chicago

Sun-Times News Group cited him as one of Twenty-One “Leaders

in the Arts for the 21st Century in Chicago’s Southland.” Poland’s,

Newsweek magazine listed his The Strangers (Obcy) in the “Top

Ten Horror / Thriller Novels of 2008” and there will a 40th

anniversary edition of the book this year in Spain, Poland,

Germany, and the USA. Castle and his wife Jane will celebrate

their 53nd wedding anniversary this July. They live in Crete, Illinois.

Photo credit: Michelle Pretorious


CASSANDRA PETERSON – From the top of her beehive hairdo to

the bottom of her stiletto heels, Elvira, Mistress of the Dark

personifies the horror genre in one spooky, sexy, funny package.


As Queen of Halloween, her reign has now spanned 40 years and

includes her long-running nationally syndicated television series,

Movie Macabre and two feature films: Elvira, Mistress of the Dark

and Elvira’s Haunted Hills.She has appeared in National ad

campaigns for Pepsi and Coors, recorded five record albums and

has written a line of young adult novels, a “Coffin Table” photo

retrospective,and most recently, her memoir, Yours Cruelly, Elvira

from Hachette Book Group.


The worldwide Elvira brand has generated thousands of products,

including three pinball machines, four slot machines, eight Funko

POP!’s, four comic book series, a line of NECA action figures, a

Chia Pet, a Living Dead doll, a Monster High Skullector doll from Mattel, and the best-selling female costume of all time.

Elvira has appeared on hundreds of television shows including Happy Halloween Scooby Doo, Elvira’s 40th Anniversary Very Scary, Very Special Special for the Shudder Channel, and the Netflix & Chills Halloween ad campaign.


Played by actress-writer Cassandra Peterson, Elvira, Mistress of the Dark has carved out a niche in popular American culture that is sure to endure for decades to come.

Instagram @therealelvira

Facebook @therealelvira


STEVE RASNIC TEM – Steve Rasnic Tem’s writing career spans

over 45 years, including more than 500 published short stories,

17 collections, 8 novels, misc. poetry and plays, and a handbook

on writing, Yours to Tell: Dialogues on the Art & Practice of Fiction,

written with his late wife Melanie Tem. His collaborative novella

with Melanie, The Man On The Ceiling, won the World Fantasy,

Bram Stoker, and International Horror Guild awards in 2001. He

has also won the Bram Stoker, International Horror Guild, and

British Fantasy Awards for his solo work, including Blood Kin,

winner of 2014’s Bram Stoker for novel. Originally from the

Appalachian region of Southwest Virginia, he now lives in

Centennial Colorado.

Mort Castle
Cassandra Peterson
Steve Rasnic Tem
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