And to think I used to live my life blissfully unaware that bloggers and awards committees were out there busily compiling lists of excellent books.
First, the awards news: Sofia Samatar has won the Crawford Award for an outstanding first fantasy novel, A Stranger in Olondria. The Bram Stoker Award has also publicized their preliminary ballot, which is great for non-me people who read and love horror (I don’t do horror; I watched The Sixth Sense in 5th grade and it literally haunts me to this day and yes I am aware that most people don’t even consider it a horror movie). The Clarke Awards have also released a list of all their female award submissions. This feels a little…condescend-y, and doesn’t at all make up for their all-male shortlist last year.
But oh, we’re not finished. The Kitschies have released their shortlist, which might be my favorite award because they give you a tentacle-trophy and a bottle of rum if you win. And here’s a nice semi-interviewed list of authors and stories eligible for the Campbell Award. And Apex readers have elected their favorite story of 2013, which is typically Apex-ian (exceptionally good and visually wild and idea-driven).
As far as new books, here’s Tor.com’s list of upcoming speculative fiction in February.
Articles this week are strictly in the fun and the-more-you-know categories. Here’s a cutesy list of the nine women who shaped science fiction and fantasy, which is great except where are Atwood and Butler. For more fun, here’s i09’s list of all the characters that have said “I’ll hold them off” and actually survived. Not to be a downer, GRRM conspiracy theorists, but Syrio is totally dead. Unlike certain BBC series about brilliant detectives (curse you Sherlock), GRRM plays for keeps. I also just ran into the Mighty God King’s photoshopped versions of the books he read as a teenager, which are amazing. Okay, this was posted in 2008 but I just found it and as Link Tzar I can do this kind of thing
My favorite article this week, though, was Kameron Hurley‘s excellent post about common world-building mistakes in epic fantasy.
Writing and publishing
Dudes, have I talked about this yet? It feels unbelievable that I haven’t talked about this yet. Lightspeed Magazine has set out on a noble mission to destroy science fiction — by letting women write it. They started a Kickstarter campaign to fund a special issue edited and written entirely by women. They blew their original goal out of the water, and now they only need a little more to issue a special Women Destroy Horror issue. And if you’d like to submit to the special issue, you’ve still got seven days.
And if you’d like to skip the short story stage and go straight to a bestseller, Science has discovered the secret formula. Also in the works: pills that let you let you eat without gaining weight and a magic powder that stops your pets from shedding.
These are a few of my favorite things:
- This is clearly what we should be putting our time into, people. A time-lapse GIF of the entire journey of the Fellowship of the Ring.
- And here’s a collection of vintage library ads. Somehow, the atomic-age-dystopian aesthetic of stuff like Bioshock has made 1960s posters look creepy and foreboding to me.
- Tor.com also has an excerpt from The Seven Wild Sisters by Charles de Lint and illustrated by Charles Vess. Two people I love.