Biography - Karen Funk Blocher

Biography: Karen Funk Blocher

Karen Christine Funk (now Karen Funk Blocher) was born March 10, 1957 in Syracuse, NY. By high school she was the editor of a Star Trek fanzine called 2-5YM, and trying to write a novel about a man who gradually turns into an ape. She soon abandoned The Simian (which consisted of little more than a first page and a last page) in favor of her second novel attempt, The Tengrim Sword. She also wrote poetry, essays and satire for 2-5YM and several school publications.

In 1975 she graduated from Fayetteville-Manlius High School and started at Syracuse University, majoring in Creative Writing and Television-Radio.  She also played a lot of D&D.  In 1977, she changed majors to English Literature and Film for logistical reasons (i.e. a television class conflicted with watching Barney Miller).In 19
77, Karen submitted Chapter One of The Tengrim Sword to the Clarion SF Writer’s Workshop, and was accepted. There she studied under Robin Scott Wilson, Harlan Ellison, Algis J Budrys, Peter S Beagle, and Damon Knight & Kate Wilhelm. Her fellow Clarionites that year included John Blocher, whom Karen married on May 19, 1979, exactly one week after she failed to graduate from college.

Karen and John moved to Columbus, Ohio, where Karen soon found herself managing a used record store.  Her first professional sale as a writer was a tribute to John Lennon for Relix Magazine, written shortly after his murder in December, 1980.  Other music articles followed.

At the end of January, 1986, Karen and John put most of their worldly goods into storage, and drove around the country looking for someplace that it wasn’t winter.  When even Florida turned out to be wet and chilly, they detoured north to Montreal, where it was really winter, and then headed south and west.  Soon they were negotiating—over a pay phone at a campground just outside Tucson—to buy their first house.  They still live in Tucson, albeit not in the same house.

It was in Tucson that Karen started working on her novel again (eventually renamed Heirs of Mâvarin) after a long hiatus.  She finally finished the first complete draft in 1989 (right after co-writing a Christmas trivia book with John), and started on a sequel, Mages of Mâvarin.  In 1990, Karen co-founded two fan clubs, United Whovians of Tucson and Project Quantum LKaren and
                  Rani, 2004. Photo by JBlocher. Art by Sherlock.eap, for which she edited TARDIS Time Lore, The Observer and other fanzines.  With her sometime writing partner, Teresa Murray, she also interviewed numerous tv writers, producers and actors, later turning some of those interviews into Starlog Magazine articles.  Karen also wrote four series of Doctor Who trading cards for Cornerstone Communications, John’s company.  Cornerstone folded a couple of years later, but it wasn’t the fault of anyone named Blocher.

Over the years Karen has worked at Friendly Ice Cream, McDonald’s, a hippie variety store called Monkeys Retreat, several record stores, two video rental chains, and three travel agencies. For over a decade, she was the bookkeeper and operations manager of Worldwide Travel Inc. in Tucson.  In November, 2002, she finally went back to college, this time majoring in accounting at the University of Phoenix.  She maintained a 4.0 GPA there for over a year, finishing with a 3.94 GPA. Despite her heavy schedule of coursework, office work and church obligations,  however, she still made minor progress on getting her first two novels polished for publication, while writing new material for this website as well as the third and fourth Mâvarin books. After receiving her B.S. in Business/Accounting in early 2005, she accepted a position with First Magnus Financial Corp, remaining there until the company's collapse in August 2007 in the first wave of the mortgage financing crisis. She later worked as an accountant for a well-known retailer of recreational vehicles, which subsequently declared bankruptcy as well.

Karen is currently a full charge bookkeeper at a small non-profit agency in Tucson, Arizona, and the bookkeeper, webmaster, newsletter editor and unofficial photographer at St. Michael and All Angels Church in Tucson. She blogs at Outpost Mâvarin and maintains an active Facebook presence. She  is actively pursuing a personal diet and exercise program, and has lost over 120 pounds since July 2011.

Karen and John have two dogs, no kids, and no cats.

Karen's Professional Summary page.
Welcome to Mâvarin page
Dr. Ruth Anne Johnson page.
A tribute to Karen and Steve's talented mother.
Karen's Credos and Curios page.
My life and bibliography in excruciating detail can by found on this page.
Outpost Mâvarin
with links to Karen's other blogs.

church New! St. Michael's And All Angels Episcopal Church
Steve Funk's Latif Turkish Angoras page

Last updated: 4/16/13