Science Fiction Nebula Awards

IMG_9512It’s that time of year! Congratulations to the 2012 Nebula Award Winners. There are two major awards in science fiction and those are the Hugo and the Nebula Awards. Last year both awards went to Connie Willis for her novels  Black Out/All Clear.

I totally agreed with that outcome.

I am concerned, however, with these awards because they both seemed to be dominated by traditional publishing houses. TOR has a number of winners and I wonder at the politics in the back room. Having said that, TOR has done the most for getting science fiction out there and is one of the top houses in the genre, if not the top. I’m putting 2312 by Kim Stanley Robison on my list (mentioned it in one of the blogs on Mars) and plan to read it soon. Stay tuned for that.

I find it frustrating that good science fiction appears hard to find, and yet writing a science fiction series is hard to get out there to be found. I am getting a large number of novels from eager self published authors that want me to review their books.

Truth is that I’m finding them difficult to read and promote. I had wanted to be a platform for this new group, but the platform is time consuming and shaky at best. I can’t shamelessly promote what I don’t like, and yet what I don’t like might be your favorite. I want to do everything to promote these fledging careers and yet keep my integrity.

But it’s been hard and frustrating.

My reading group at Powell’s bookstore is only able to read those novels that Powell’s can obtain through the traditional channels and several books have been turned down for our group because they are out of print or not available in the catalog. (read self published) So we are desperate to find good new books to read. Remember that in a lot of bookstores if the book didn’t sell in the first several weeks, the covers were torn off and the books were returned.

Who, but an established author can possibly build a fan base that fast?

There is a ripping disconnect here caused by the shifting world of publishing and I hope somehow readers and self publishers will find a way to connect better. Let me know if you know of other websites that are promoting new exciting science fiction novels…not paranormal.

Death of a StarshipAlso a comment about two Northwest nominees.

Jay Lake is seriously ill with cancer and we extend our heartfelt wishes for an easing of the pain I know he must be going through. I reviewed two of his novels and liked both of them. The Stars do Not Lie is going on my list. Authors are self employed and therefore often have to pay their own healthcare, or in many cases can’t afford any. I encourage you to give this book a buy and help Jay out.Green

The other Northwest writer…well, she moved away…but still stays in touch…is Mary Robinette Kowal. Her novel is a Jane Eyre Steampunk that uses the style of Jane Eyre’s writing in the Victorian setting, but has the flavor of Steampunk and uses “glamour” or magic. If that intrigues you, try Glamour in Glass.Glamour in Glass

Meanwhile, here are the selections for this years nominees and winners….

The Science Fiction and Fantasy Writers of America (SFWA) have announced the winners of the 2012 Nebula Awards, the Ray Bradbury Award, and the Andre Norton Award.

Congratulations to the winners and all the honorees!


  • 2312, Kim Stanley Robinson (Orbit US; Orbit UK)
  • Throne of the Crescent Moon, Saladin Ahmed (DAW; Gollancz ’13)
  • Ironskin, Tina Connolly (Tor)
  • The Killing Moon, N.K. Jemisin (Orbit US; Orbit UK)
  • The Drowning Girl, Caitlín R. Kiernan (Roc)
  • Glamour in Glass, Mary Robinette Kowal (Tor)


  • After the Fall, Before the Fall, During the Fall, Nancy Kress (Tachyon)
  • On a Red Station, Drifting, Aliette de Bodard (Immersion Press)
  • “The Stars Do Not Lie,” Jay Lake (Asimov’s 10-11/12)
  • “All the Flavors,” Ken Liu (GigaNotoSaurus 2/1/12)
  • “Katabasis,” Robert Reed (F&SF 11-12/12)
  • “Barry’s Tale,” Lawrence M. Schoen (Buffalito Buffet)


  • “Close Encounters,” Andy Duncan (The Pottawatomie Giant & Other Stories)
  • “The Pyre of New Day,” Catherine Asaro (The Mammoth Books of SF Wars)
  • “The Waves,” Ken Liu (Asimov’s 12/12)
  • “The Finite Canvas” Brit Mandelo ( 12/5/12)
  • “Swift, Brutal, Retaliation,” Meghan McCarron ( 1/4/12)
  • “Portrait of Lisiane Pataginia” Rachel Swirsky ( 8/22/12)
  • “Fade to White,” Catherynne M. Valente (Clarkesworld 8/12)

Short Story:

  • “Immersion,” Aliette de Bodard (Clarkesworld 6/12)
  • “Robot,” Helena Bell (Clarkesworld 9/12)
  • “Fragmentation, or Ten Thousand Goodbyes,” Tom Crosshill (Clarkesworld 4/12)
  • “Nanny’s Day,” Leah Cypess (Asimov’s 3/12)
  • “Give Her Honey When You Hear Her Scream,” Maria Dahvana Headley (Lightspeed 7/12)
  • “The Bookmaking Habits of Select Species,” Ken Liu (Lightspeed 8/12)
  • “Five Ways to Fall in Love on Planet Porcelain,” Cat Rambo (Near + Far)

Ray Bradbury Award for Outstanding Dramatic Presentation

  • Beasts of the Southern Wild, Benh Zeitlin (director), Benh Zeitlin and Lucy Abilar (writers), (Journeyman/Cinereach/Court 13/Fox Searchlight)
  • The Avengers, Joss Whedon (director) and Joss Whedon and Zak Penn (writers), (Marvel/Disney)
  • The Cabin in the Woods, Drew Goddard (director), Joss Whedon and Drew Goddard (writers) (Mutant Enemy/Lionsgate)
  • The Hunger Games, Gary Ross (director), Gary Ross, Suzanne Collins, and Billy Ray (writers), (Lionsgate)
  • John Carter, Andrew Stanton (director), Michael Chabon, Mark Andrews, and Andrew Stanton (writers), (Disney)
  • Looper, Rian Johnson (director), Rian Johnson (writer), (FilmDistrict/TriStar)

Andre Norton Award for Young Adult Science Fiction and Fantasy Book

  • Fair Coin, E.C. Myers (Pyr)
  • Iron Hearted Violet, Kelly Barnhill (Little, Brown)
  • Black Heart, Holly Black (McElderry; Gollancz)
  • Above, Leah Bobet (Levine)
  • The Diviners, Libba Bray (Little, Brown; Atom)
  • Vessel, Sarah Beth Durst (S&S/McElderry)
  • Seraphina, Rachel Hartman (Random House; Doubleday UK)
  • Enchanted, Alethea Kontis (Harcourt)
  • Every Day, David Levithan (Knopf)
  • Summer of the Mariposas, Guadalupe Garcia McCall (Tu Books)
  • Railsea, China Miéville (Del Rey; Macmillan)
  • Above World, Jenn Reese (Candlewick)

Solstice Awards were awarded to editor Ginjer Buchanan and astronomer and entertainer Carl Sagan, the latter of which was accepted by his son Nick Sagan.

The Kevin O’Donnell Jr. Service Award was awarded to Michael Payne.

The winners are announced at SFWA’s 48th Annual Nebula Awards Weekend, held Thursday through Sunday, May 16 to May 19, 2013 at the San Jose Hilton in San Jose, California. Borderland Books hosted the mass autograph session from 5:30 p.m. until 7:30 p.m. on Friday, May 17th at the San Jose Hilton.

As announced earlier this year, Gene Wolfe was the recipient of the 2012 Damon Knight Memorial Grand Master Award for his lifetime contributions to, and achievements in, the field. Founded in 1965 by the late Damon Knight, Science Fiction and Fantasy Writers of America brings together the most successful and daring writers of speculative fiction throughout the world.



Filed under award winning scifi, Best selling science fiction, Nebula nominations, science fiction

3 responses to “Science Fiction Nebula Awards

  1. claytonjcallahan

    Choosing “the best” in anything is difficult because it’s largely a matter of taste. Who is your ideal reader? My stuff appeals largely to the smart asses of the world that enjoy a good tongue-in-cheek adventure. Others write more serious tombs for more intellectually inclined folks. Neater is superior in terms of imagination or entertainment, but one may be considered for an award and the other not. Thus I put more stock in recommendations of like-minded friends than any silly gold sticker on the cover of a book.


    • Garrett: A very thoughtful and helpful response. Thanks.

      Early on, I was desperate to find others that liked to read the kind of science fiction I read so that I could find other good books to enjoy out there. That’s what this blog is all about and I need to keep that compass pointing true. Thanks for the realignment.


  2. With regards to “how do you choose,” my personal opinion is to review what you like and ignore what you don’t. You could even have a separate page or occasional “collection post” that lists books you received, began to read (or read all the way through) and didn’t enjoy. Distinctly separate the ones you simply didn’t like, but may be appropriate for others, from ones that you found intensely unprofessional (for reasons of bad editing, inconsistencies, or what have you).

    I never bother to review a book I didn’t like. I consider failing to mention it harsh enough. Why tell someone you didn’t enjoy their book? Even put politely as possible, thin-skinned authors are likely to take offense. They may even give up, failing to give themselves an opportunity to mature into a professional.

    But if you continue to review only books that you enjoy, your blog audience will eventually be curtailed to people that like the same type of book you do. Readers who have different tastes from you will leave, and readers who have similar tastes to you will slowly accumulate. At some point you’ll be an automatic platform for the types of books you like. As your audience grows, you help authors you enjoy more and more.

    Don’t worry about the ones whose work you don’t enjoy. They have other blogs out there, other readers who will adore their work. You can’t be a platform for everybody. If you recommend books you don’t like, you’ll lose readers with similar tastes to yours. Do that enough times, and you’re a platform for nobody because you’re not a platform.

    I, personally, find your blog excellent, and though I’ve only downloaded a couple of the books you’ve recommended, I’ve been pleased by the result every time. And though none of the books I’ve published to date are truly science fiction (the kind you review on your blog) one day, when I do, I certainly hope to submit to you. Because you like the kind of books I like, and so hopefully you’ll like mine. 🙂


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