Friday, July 29, 2011

More Awards Than You Can Shake a Stick At

There have been lots of awards and nominations released recently, and I've neglected most of them. So here's a speed round to catch up:

First: the Rhysling Awards for Science Fictional Poetry Winners

Yes, only a few dozen people in the entire world care, but the winners are among them:

Short Poem
  • First Place: “Peach-Creamed Honey”, Amal El-Mohtar
  • Second Place: “Binary Creation Myth”, Karen A. Romanko
  • Third Place: “Dogstar Men”, C.S.E. Cooney
Long Poem
  • First place: “The Sea King’s Second Bride”, C. S. E. Cooney
  • Second place: “Dark Rains Here and There”, Bruce Boston
  • Third place: “Wreck-Diving the Starship”, Robert Frazier

Second: the Cordwainer Smith Rediscovery Award Winner

This award goes to a writer whose work has been unjustly neglected -- all those of you whose work is justly neglected will have to find a different award -- and is given in memory of Cordwainer Smith, a great SF writer who was never massively popular.

(For those of us who like smart, interesting books and stories, the Smith award is bittersweet -- it does bring a tiny bit more attention, but it mostly serves to remind us that these excellent writers are neglected, and will almost certainly continue to be so.)

This year's winner is the first living recipient, Katherine MacLean.

Third: Mythopoeic Award Winners

These are given by the Mythopoeic Society and have complicated rules that I don't entirely understand -- books that lose the first year can go around again for a second try, and all winners must be as similar to Tolkien and C.S. Lewis as possible -- but they exist, and here's the stuff that won this year:

Fourth: Shirley Jackson Award Winners

These are given for "outstanding achievement in horror, psychological suspense, and dark fantasy fiction" -- and, yes, nominees do get a handsomely engraved stone, suitable for flinging at some unfortunate person. This year's winners are:
  • Novel: Mr. Shivers, Robert Jackson Bennett (Orbit)
  • Novella: “Mysterium Tremendum”, Laird Barron (Occultation)
  • Novelette: “The Truth Is a Cave in the Black Mountains”, Neil Gaiman (Stories)
  • Short Story: “The Things”, Peter Watts (Clarkesworld 1/10)
  • Single-Author Collection: Occultation, Laird Barron (Night Shade)
  • Edited Anthology: Stories, Neil Gaiman & Al Sarrantonio, eds. (Morrow)

One does wonder what kind of non-edited anthologies the judges have come across, that they feel compelled to make such a distinction.

Fifth: Prometheus Award Winners

These awards -- which were announced a couple of weeks ago, but will actually be awarded at Renovation, the Reno Worldcon in a couple of weeks -- are given by a libertarian organization but are for "pro-freedom" science fiction, which quite often does not seem to fit anyone's definition of libertarianism.

Sixth: World Fantasy Award Nominees

And, to bring up the rear, the nominees for the most prestigious award in fantasy:

Short Fiction
  • Vincent Chong
  • Kinuko Y. Craft
  • Richard A. Kirk
  • John Picacio
  • Shaun Tan
Special Award Professional
  • John Joseph Adams, for editing and anthologies
  • Lou Anders, for editing at Pyr
  • Marc Gascoigne, for Angry Robot
  • Stéphane Marsan and Alain Névant, for Bragelonne
  • Brett Alexander Savory and Sandra Kasturi, for ChiZine
Special Award Non-Professional
  • Stephen Jones, Michael Marshall Smith and Amanda Foubister, for Brighton Shock!: The Souvenir Book Of The World Horror Convention 2010
  • Alisa Krasnostein, for Twelfth Planet Press
  • Matthew Kressel, for Sibyl's Garage and Senses Five Press
  • Charles Tan, for Bibliophile Stalker
  • Lavie Tidhar, for The World SF blog
If the process is still the same as when I was a judge a few years back, the judges picked three nominees in each category, with the other two being added by a vote from member of this year's convention and the members of the conventions of the past two years. Then the judges either already have or are about to pick the final winners. (If you suspect that makes the votes of the members slightly beside the point, that precisely matches my experience as a judge.) This year's judges are Andrew Hook, Sacha Mamczak, Mark Rich, Sean Wallace, and Kim Wilkins.

There also are two Lifetime Achievement Awards given annually, under slightly different rules that I believe are secret (so I won't talk about them here). This year's winners are:
  • Peter S. Beagle
  • Angélica Gorodischer
Congratulations to all of the winners and nominees, and all patience to the WFA nominees, who know that the winners have probably already been decided.

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