Sunday, April 26, 2009

2009 Nebula Winners

Last night, in a swanky ceremony somewhere in greater Los Angeles, the following awards were handed down with all appropriate pomp and fanfare:
  • Novel: Powers, Ursula K. Le Guin (Harcourt)
  • Novella: "The Spacetime Pool", Catherine Asaro (Analog Mar '08)
  • Novelette: "Pride and Prometheus", John Kessel (F&SF Jan '08)
  • Short Story: "Trophy Wives", Nina Kiriki Hoffman (Fellowship Fantastic)
  • Script: Wall-E, Andrew Stanton & Jim Reardon. Original story by Andrew Stanton & Pete Docter (Pixar)
  • Andre Norton Award: Flora's Dare, Ysabeau S. Wilce (Harcourt)
  • Damon Knight Grand Master: Harry Harrison
  • Author Emerita: M.J. Engh
  • Solstice Award: Kate Wilhelm, A.J. Budrys, and Martin Greenberg
  • Ray Bradbury Award: Joss Whedon
  • SFWA Service Award:Victoria Strauss
I haven't read Powers -- though the title always reminds me of the Brian Bendis revisionist-superheroes comic -- so I won't comment on that.

Ditto on the short fiction winners.

I believe this is the last time SFWA will have the Script category, which is not too soon for me, though WALL*E is a fine movie, albeit one whose script I would not be able to evaluate from seeing the film.

Flora's Dare, which I recently read, is a fine novel, and a lot of fun. Wilce now has 40% of the Norton Awards ever awarded.

I was once quite fond of Harrison's work, but I don't entirely think he's up to the level of the best previous winners of the Grand Master Award. (And renaming the award, though it was a well-meant gesture to the man who created SFWA out of whole cloth, makes it sound like the naming rights have been sold; the title is now too long, too unwieldy, and a bit silly-sounding.)

I've complained for several years about the kiss-slap of the "Author Emeritus" award, and I murmured again this time around for Engh. (Who, additionally, appears to have gotten it for writing one highly respected but little-read book in the '70s.)

And the Solstice Award is for writers who will never get the Grand Master, aren't important enough to be a single Emeritus, but SFWA wants to give some recognition to before they die. I don't believe the recipients consider that as much of a back-handed insult as I would; I clearly am more nasty-minded and pugnatious than the average aged SFWAn.

The Bradbury will take over for the Script category next year, as a voted award going to the media object SFWAs most wish they were writing for. This year, though, is an unvoted one-off going to a single individual for no obvious reason despite the fact that SFWA is desperately in love with him.

And the SFWA Service award is what it always is: the kind of award every organization gives to the people that keep it running.

1 comment:

KatG said...

Yes, but you have to admit, they're in love with Joss Whedon because he gives a fun acceptance speech:

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=RJdmWKI1wPU

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