It’s that exciting time of the year where many creators of stuff fantasy and science-fictional do a very sensible thing: make a post about what creations of theirs are eligible for what awards.
This is particularly useful for the absent-minded, who may have missed or forgotten something, and the lazy, who really really appreciate it when writers let them know whether that smashing bit of short fiction they read is a short story, novelette or novella. Obviously, being practically perfect, I am neither of those things. Ahem. Yes.
So, in that spirit, the vast list of stuff that I’ve created this year that is eligible for nomination:
Verity! Podcast – eligible for the Best Fancast category in the Hugos (and the Non-Fiction category at the BSFA Awards, as I learnt yesterday). I co-host this with Deborah Stanish, Erika Ensign, Katrina Griffiths, Tansy Rayner Roberts and Lynne M. Thomas.
It’s quite good! At least, the episodes I listen to (the ones I’m not in) are. But possibly not terribly exciting if you don’t enjoy Doctor Who a bit, since that’s what we talk about. At length. Sometimes with smashing jokes!
And here’s the part of the post where I recommend other people who’ve made stuff in the last year that I think quite wonderful and worthy of your consideration (organised in Hugo categories, since that’s the thing I’m most familiar with):
Ancillary Justice by Ann Leckie – Cause it’s Proper Good Sci-fi. Y’know when you’re growing up and you get better and better at reading and you suddenly find that reading Any Of The Books is now possible and it’s exciting and wonderful and you keep finding out new things, then, as time goes on, those feelings fade and reading is still great but you recognise ideas and tropes and plot twists and you grow sad, but then, every so often, there comes along a book and you’re relieved to find there’s still magic in the world after all? That.
The Thousand Names by Django Wexler – Much of this is a good, solid fantasy book. There’s nice plot, great action scenes, and fantasy!Napoleon (hurrah!). But what makes it great is that despite being military fantasy – a genre I tend to give a weary pass to being rather rubbish about including many interesting female characters – half the characters are women. The main female POV, Winter, is the best character in it, and all of her most important relationships are with other women. They are soldiers, spies and priestesses. This is the sort of fantasy I want to swim in.
The Waiting Stars by Aliette de Bodard – Is de Bodard my favourite sci-fi writer currently writing? Possibly. She’s certainly my favourite sci-fi short story writer. This is space opera. Beautiful, elegantly written space opera.
The Lady Astronaut of Mars by Mary Robinette Kowal – A gorgeous tale that was denied its nomination last year for technical reasons. It remains a gorgeous tale this year and has now been published in what is presumably an acceptable nominable fashion. Hurrah!
All That Fairy Tale Crap by Rachel Swirsky – Such anger! And passion! And brilliance. Swirsky is an extraordinary writer, and this is the second best thing I’ve read of hers.
Ramesses on the Frontier by Paul Cornell – This has a wonderfully textured, layered tone. Dignity and absurdity, strangeness and the familiar, respect and humour are intertwined in a tale that I could so very easily have rolled my eyes at as it turned towards sentimentality. But I didn’t. Instead I found it beautiful.
Beneath Ceaseless Skies, Apex, and Lightspeed have delighted me this year, in that order.
The Writer and the Critic – it’s still my favourite podcast, it’s still hilarious and thought-provoking, and it was one vote away from the Hugo short list last year. ONE VOTE. Come on, people.
Foz Meadows – For she had written many great things this year. And, in times of great stress, exclaiming “old men yelling at clouds” has done wonders for my blood pressure.
Best Fan Artist
G. D. Falksen – creator of one of the most gorgeous pieces of fan art I’ve seen, The History of Doctor Who in the style of the Bayeux Tapestry.
Ann Leckie – Ancillary Justice, dammit!
And I’m now two blog posts for two weeks in 2014! Most excellent.