Posts Tagged ‘awards’

A jar of Tiptree chutney

The James Tiptree, Jr Award winner was announced recently. This award is given annually to science fiction and fantasy works that ‘expand and explore our understanding of gender’. It’s supported by a yearly auction at Wiscon and by bakesales at numerous other conventions.

This is a juried award. Each year, the jury is made up of different people. And each year, that jury can decide exactly how they want to run things. Most years, there’s been a winner (or two winners), a short list, and a long list. Generally the long list are works that may not be science fiction or fantasy, or may not say too much new about gender, but the jury really liked them and they sort of fit the Tiptree Award mission.

If I have included a link below, it’s either a link to the book/dvd in the Nashua Public Library collection, or a link to where you can read/listen to the story online.

The winner this year is Baba Yaga Laid an Egg by Dubravka Ugresic.

Translated from the Croatian, it shows that the Tiptree Award jurors are never afraid to give an award to something not originally written in English. Last year’s winner included a manga, Let the Right One In made the honor list, and then went on to be made into two movies. (Låt den rätte komma in and Let Me In).

I borrowed Baba Yaga Laid an Egg through interlibrary loan. You can too! I have to say, at first I didn’t understand why it won the award. It read a bit like chick lit. But then it got a little stranger. And then it got really strange. Definitely feminist. And if you like Baba Yaga or want to know scads more about her, this is the book to read.

The short list, or ‘honor list’ as it’s called this year, is:

The Bone Palace by Amanda Downum (Orbit 2010)

I have not read this, but it’s available through interlibrary loan. Maybe I’ll request it right now!

The Hundred Thousand Kingdoms by N.K. Jemisin (Orbit 2010)

NPL owns this and the sequel and I highly recommend it! It’s also been nominated for a Nebula, as per my previous blog post.

“Diana Comet and the Disappearing Lover” (Read Part 1 and Part 2 Online) by Sandra McDonald (published as “Diana Comet,” Strange Horizons, March 2 & March 9, 2009)

You can also find it in her collection Diana Comet and Other Improbable Stories. Which I just finished and I love. Unfortunately, it doesn’t look like any New Hampshire libraries own it!

“Drag Queen Astronaut” (Read it Online) by Sandra McDonald (Crossed Genres issue 24, November 2010)

I don’t believe this is in her collection. I need to go read this!

The Secret Feminist Cabal: A Cultural History of Science Fiction Feminisms by Helen Merrick (Aqueduct Press 2009)

This is nonfiction and not available at any New Hampshire library. I own it and need to read more of it. Good stuff.

Who Fears Death by Nnedi Okorafor (DAW 2010)

One of those books I keep meaning to read! Available through interlibrary loan.

Living with Ghosts by Kari Sperring (DAW 2009)

I know nothing about this one. It’s showing as having been at a New Hampshire library at some point, but possibly no longer. :(

The Colony by Jillian Weise (Soft Skull Press 2010)

I know nothing about this one either. Two NH libraries have it, so you can request it through interlibrary loan.

The following works made this year’s ‘long list’:

Beth Bernobich, Passion Play (Tor 2010) [1 NH library has!]

Stevie Carroll, “The Monitors” (in Echoes of Possibilities, edited by Aleksandr Volnov, Noble Romance Publishing 2010)

Roxane Gay, “Things I Know About Fairy Tales” (Necessary Fiction, May 13, 2009)

Frances Hardinge, Gullstruck Island (MacMillan 2009)

Julia Holmes, Meeks (Small Beer Press 2010) [Small Beer Press is out of Massachusetts. They’re awesome. Available at 2 NH libraries.]

Malinda Lo, Ash (Little, Brown 2009) [She has another book out called Huntress.]

Alissa Nutting, Unclean Jobs for Women and Girls (Starcherone Books 2010)

Helen Oyeyemi, White Is for Witching (Doubleday 2009)

Rachel Swirsky, “Eros, Philia, Agape” (Read it Online or Listen to the Podcast) (, March 3, 2009)

To get a quick idea of what the award is all about, you can read one of the Tiptree anthologies. 1, 2, and 3. These contain short stories, essays, and excerpts from novels that have won. Again, I highly recommend them. They are awesome.

Helix Nebula

The Nebula Award nominees were announced not that long ago. The Nebula Awards are given out by SFWA, the Science Fiction & Fantasy Writers of America. This means it’s an award nominated and voted on by professional sf/f writers and editors, and others in the industry who are qualified to join SFWA.

The Full List of Nominees is Here

Notable this year is a fairly good representation of women writers and writers of color. Also notable to me is that I have friends and acquaintances on this list! Including a Clarion classmate of mine.

Did you know there are a lot of science fiction and fantasy magazines online? I don’t mean just as ebooks, although there are a number of those. Here’s some of them that have stories nominated this year. You can read them for free! – Yes, by the same company as Tor Books, but they publish new short fiction here.

Lightspeed Magazine – This magazine is actually new this year! So it’s pretty amazing it has two stories on the ballot.

Apex Magazine

The big print magazines also make an appearance. Asimov’s, Analog, Fantasy and Science Fiction, and Realms of Fantasy. No love for Weird Tales this year.

The Nashua Public Library has copies of Asimov’s going back to February 2009. You can check out back issues, or read the current one in the Stearns Room.

The Hundred Thousand Kingdoms Cover
The nominees in the novel category are:

* The Native Star, M.K. Hobson
* The Hundred Thousand Kingdoms, N.K. Jemisin
* Shades of Milk and Honey, Mary Robinette Kowal
* Echo, Jack McDevitt
* Who Fears Death, Nnedi Okorafor
* Blackout/All Clear, Connie Willis

As you can see from the links, we have three of the books in our catalog. The Hundred Thousand Kingdoms has a sequel, The Broken Kingdoms. Blackout is available as an ebook from Overdrive. If you’re wondering why it says Blackout/All Clear, it’s because it’s really one novel, just broken up into two volumes. Rather like Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows is one movie broken up into two movies. Not quite the same thing as a sequel.

I haven’t read Shades of Milk and Honey, but I do remember it, because they were giving away scented fans at Readercon. I’m used to seeing bookmarks, postcards, little buttons, but I’d never seen a fan before. So it was really eyecatching and memorable.

White Cat Cover
And the nominees for the Andre Norton Award for Young Adult Science Fiction and Fantasy are:

* Ship Breaker, Paolo Bacigalupi
* White Cat, Holly Black
* Mockingjay, Suzanne Collins
* Hereville: How Mirka Got Her Sword, Barry Deutsch
* The Boy from Ilysies, Pearl North
* I Shall Wear Midnight, Terry Pratchett
* A Conspiracy of Kings, Megan Whalen Turner
* Behemoth, Scott Westerfeld

Again, the links go to it in our catalog, so you can see if it’s checked in and where to find it. Or place a hold on it if it’s checked out.

White Cat has a sequel coming out next month called Red Glove. And you should totally read it. Mockingjay is third in a series. And you should also totally read that! Behemoth is second in a series. I’m less enthusiastic about that one, to be honest. I haven’t read any of the others in the list, but I’m sure they’re good too.

Of the novels, I’m rooting for The Hundred Thousand Kingdoms and I think Mockingjay is a shoe-in.

What are your picks?

hugo_logo1.jpg There’s something notable about the Hugo and Nebula Award nominees this year.

Check out the Hugo Award Nominees and the Nebula Award Nominees yourself and see if you can spot it.

Or read on to be spoiled on the answer!
In the past, the short fiction has mostly been drawn from ‘The Big Three’ magazines. This would be Asimov’s (which you can borrow from the Nashua Public Library!), Analog, and The Magazine of Fantasy and Science Fiction (F&SF). Even other notable print magazines didn’t necessarily get a lot of love, such as Realms of Fantasy and Weird Tales.
But this year, there’s a great diversity amongst the short fiction (novella, novelette, and short story) categories. A number of stories that were nominated for both awards first appeared in anthologies. Even cooler, a fair few of them were published in online venues.
What does this mean? It means that the people nominating for the awards (professionals in the case of the Nebula and fans who paid for WorldCon memberships for the Hugos) are reading more widely. Not only that, but they’re finding good stories when they do.
But what does it mean for you as a reader? It means you can read a lot of these really cool stories. Online. For free!
And as a bonus, a lot of the sites also have podcasts, audio fiction. If reading on a screen isn’t your thing, there’s plenty of excellent science fiction and fantasy out there to listen to.
The one online magazine that appears over and over on both ballots is Clarkesworld. If you have the same interests I do, you may have seen ads for them on Facebook or other sites you visit. Clarkesworld in particular has some really cool artwork.
Clarkesworld Magazine
Another big name is You may recognize that name from the cover of a favorite book.
Some sites you may be less familiar with, but who are publishing some really cool stuff are:
Strange Horizons, Beneath Ceaseless Skies, Ideomancer, Fantasy Magazine, and Expanded Horizons. Most of these are well-known amongst science fiction and fantasy short story writers. Many of them pay pro or semi-pro rates (meaning slightly more than a pittance) and/or are read by professionals in the business, so getting published there will get you noticed. Plus, writers are readers as well, and we love to read this stuff!
Perhaps the best-known site for fantasy fiction podcasts is PodCastle. Go. Have a listen.
If short stories aren’t for you, maybe you want something shorter? Here’s two places that publish fiction in the form of tweets. Thaumatrope and Tweet the Meat. Add them to your twitter feed for a regular dose of short short short fiction.
The Nebula Awards will be handed out on May 15th at the Nebula Awards Banquet in Florida.
The Hugo Awards will be awarded in early September at this year’s WorldCon in Australia.

Happy Cinco de Mayo!
Tiptree Award Logo
If you’re looking for a book with Mexican flavor, I just finished reading Flora Segunda : being the magickal mishaps of a girl of spirit, her glass-gazing sidekick, two ominous butlers (one blue), a house with eleven thousand rooms, and a red dog by Ysabeau Wilce, which was on the Tiptree honor list last year. This year, the sequel, Flora’s Dare is. You can find both of these in the teen room.
But what is the Tiptree?
The James Tiptree, Jr. Literary Award is “an annual literary prize for science fiction or fantasy that expands or explores our understanding of gender”. It’s named after James Tiptree, Jr, which was one of Alice Sheldon’s pen names. Unlike the Nebula and the Hugo, this award is decided by a panel of judges, though anyone may recommend a book or story for consideration.
This year the winners of the award are:
The Knife of Never Letting Go by Patrick Ness. I borrowed this through interlibrary loan and read it over the weekend. It’s very good, but ends on a horrible cliffhanger! The next book won’t be published until September. This is a young adult book, but, again, don’t let that stop you from reading it. Surely it says something about the quality of YA books that they keep winning non-YA specific awards.
Filter House by Nisi Shawl. This is a collection of short stories and I’m still in the process of reading it. A ‘collection’, by the way, differs from an ‘anthology’ in that it’s a book of short stories by one author, instead of short stories by multiple authors.
You can find what the judges thought of these works and the honor’s list for this year on The Tiptree Award website. The library has a number of the books and series on the list, if you’d like to read them.
I also highly recommend the three Tiptree Award anthologies. Past winning and shortlisted short stories are compiled along with excerpts from the novel winners and essays by big names such as Ursula K. Le Guin and Joanna Russ. The library has all of them.
The James Tiptree Award Anthology 1
The James Tiptree Award Anthology 2
The James Tiptree Award Anthology 3
And when you’re done reading those, you can check out James Tiptree Jr. : The Double Life of Alice B. Sheldon, by Julie Phillips
Happy reading!