Goodreads Choice Awards 2018 Final Round

Final round voting has begun in the Goodreads Choice Awards: The Best Books 2018 and will continue through November 26. The winners will be announced December 4.

There are 21 categories overall. Here is what readers picked to advance to the final rounds in these categories of genre interest —

Self-Published Fantasy Blog-Off 2018 Finals Begin

Yesterday Mark Lawrence unveiled the page where he’ll track the 2018 Self-Published Fantasy Blog-Off Finals. Keep in mind this is not a sprint but a marathon.

Phase I began in June and runs through December. Ten participating bloggers have been chewing through the 300 entries to decide which book each of them will advance to the finals. The bloggers are —

The list of entries is here.

Lawrence explains how the first phase works —

This does not mean they have to read all the books. My own agent would go through that number in a day. But hopefully they will read part of all of them and all of some.

Then they have to post a review of their chosen title.

As of today, bloggers have eliminated 136 of the 300 entries. Follow their progress at this post.

In Phase 2, which also lasts five months, the bloggers —

  1. Read and score all 9 finalists from the other blogs.
  2. Review their favorite.
  3. Review the winner.

The final result will be revealed early in summer 2019.

Filers will be interested to know there are links to a large number of book reviews at the post for the first phase of the Blog-Off.

Amazon Names Best SFF Books of 2018

Christelle Dabos’ A Winter’s Promise (translated from the French by Hildegarde Serle) is Amazon’s pick as the Best Science Fiction and Fantasy book of 2018. It tops Amazon’s year’s best list posted November 9.

  • A Winter’s Promise by Christelle Dabos (tr. Hildegard Serle)
  • Exit Strategy by Martha Wells
  • How Long ‘Til Black Future Month? by N.K. Jemisin
  • Foundryside by Robert Jackson Bennett
  • Children of Blood and Bone by Tomi Adeyemi
  • Gunpowder Moon by David Pedreira
  • Iron and Magic by Ilona Andrews
  • The Spaceship Next Door by Gene Doucette
  • Rosewater by Tade Thompson
  • The Hazel Wood by Melissa Albert
  • The Only Harmless Great Thing by Brooke Bolander
  • Trail of Lightning by Rebecca Roanhorse
  • Zero Sum Game by S.L. Huang
  • Vita Nostra by Sergey and Marina Dyachenko
  • Iron Gold by Pierce Brown
  • Before Mars by Emma Newman
  • The Poppy War by R.F. Kuang
  • The Black God’s Drums by P. Djeli Clark
  • Tsumik and the Enslaved Fox by Forthright
  • The Razor by J. Barton Mitchell

Gilman Wins 20th Annual Endeavour Award

The Cold Eye by Kenmore, WA, writer Laura Anne Gilman has won the 20th annual Endeavour Award. The Award comes with an honorarium of $1,000 and was announced November 9, 2018, at OryCon in Portland, Oregon.

The other finalists were:

  • Cross Town by Loren W. Cooper (the book was written and accepted for
    publication while Mr. Cooper lived in the Pacific Northwest), Xeno Books;
  • Ironfoot by Victoria, BC, writer Dave Duncan, Night Shade Books;
  • Portal of 1000 Worlds also by Victoria, BC, writer Dave Duncan, Open
    Road Integrated Media; and
  • A Secret History of Witches by Port Townsend, WA, Louisa Morgan, Orbit US.

The Endeavour Award honors a distinguished science fiction or fantasy book, either a novel or a single-author collection, created by a writer living in the Pacific Northwest. All entries are read and scored by seven readers randomly selected from a panel of preliminary readers. The five highest scoring books then go to three final judges, who are all professional writers or editors from outside of the Pacific Northwest.

Judges: The judges for the 2018 Award were Elizabeth Bear, James Patrick Kelly, and Christopher Rowe.

Award Eligibility for 2019: To be eligible for next year’s Endeavour Award the book — either a novel or a single-author collection of stories — must be either science fiction or fantasy. The majority of the book must have been written, and the book accepted for publication, while the author was living in the Pacific Northwest (Oregon, Washington, Idaho, Alaska, British Columbia, or the Yukon.)

Deadline: The deadline to enter books published during 2018 is January 31, 2019, which is two weeks earlier than it has been in the past.

Full information on entering the Award is available on the Endeavour website.

The Endeavour Award is sponsored by Oregon Science Fiction Conventions, Inc. (OSFCI), a 501(c)(3) non-profit corporation.

[Thanks to Jim Fiscus for the story.]

2018 National Toy Hall of Fame Inductees

The 2018 inductees to the National Toy Hall of Fame have been announced:

  • Magic 8 Ball

Introduced in 1946, the Magic 8 Ball allows users to flirt harmlessly with fortune-telling. Users pose questions, shake the ball, and then read one of 20 answers that float to the surface at the bottom of the ball—ranging from “ask again later” and “signs point to yes,” to simply, “no.” The toy became an icon of popular culture, making its first television appearance on the Dick Van Dyke Show in the 1960s, and showing up later on hit series such as Friends and The Simpsons.

  • Pinball

Pinball traces its roots to the 18th-century French table game called bagatelle. Modern, coin-operated pinball machines originated in 1931, and manufacturers added new features over the next two decades. Flippers transitioned the game from one of chance (and maligned by some as a form of gambling) to a game of skill. Over the last century, pinball has incorporated top brands (such as Star Wars, Indiana Jones, and Game of Thrones) and become common in bars, amusement parks, arcades, restaurants, family fun centers, and other public places.

  • Uno

An Ohio barbershop owner named Merle Robbins dreamed up Uno while playing cards with his family. The new game—a shedding game like crazy eights, where players seek to empty their hand—proved to be simple enough for young children and varied enough for adults to enjoy. Robbins and his family produced 5,000 decks of Uno and pitched it across the United States before a manufacturer bought the rights to it. The game, now owned by Mattel, has inspired countless versions, including Elvis, Disney, and Hello Kitty varieties.

The National Toy Hall of Fame at The Strong, established in 1998, recognizes toys that have inspired creative play and enjoyed popularity over a sustained period. Each year, the prestigious hall inducts new honorees and showcases both new and historic versions of classic toys beloved by generations.

David G. Barnett To Receive Lifetime Achievement Award

David G. Barnett

Splatterpunk Award founders Wrath James White and Brian Keene have announced that David G. Barnett will be the honoree of the 2019 J.F. Gonzalez Lifetime Achievement Award.

Since 1993, Barnett has operated Necro Publications (and its imprints), publishing some of the biggest and best names in modern horror and extreme horror, including Edward Lee, Joe R. Lansdale, Charlee Jacob, Ryan Harding, Gerard Houarner, Mehitobel Wilson, Jeffrey Thomas, Patrick Lestewka, K. Trap Jones, and dozens of others. He has also edited or co-edited a number of anthologies, including Damned: An Anthology of the Lost and Into the Darkness Vol. 1. As an author, his own books include Dead Souls, Spying on Gods, Awakenings: Tales of the Fallen Book 1, Neon Wings: Tales of the Fallen Book 2, and The Baby (with Edward Lee).

The J.F. Gonzalez Lifetime Achievement Award — named after author J.F. Gonzalez — honors individuals who have upheld, impacted and contributed to the sub-genres of Splatterpunk and Extreme Horror. It will be presented during the second annual Splatterpunk Awards, taking place at Killercon 2019 in Austin, Texas.

[Thanks to Dann for the story.]

2018 Prix Actusf de l’Uchronie Winners

The winners of the 2018 Prix Actusf de l’Uchronie has been announced by French publisher ActuSF.

Prix Littéraire

  • Rouille de Floriane Soulas, Scrineo, 2018

Prix Graphique

  • Le visiteur du Futur, La Brigade Temporelle série complète en 3 tomes, de Guillaume Lapeyre (Scénario), François Descraques (Dessin), Alexandre Desmassias (Dessin), Ankama, 2018

Prix Special

  • Star Marx, Guide de l’aventurier des mondes imaginaires de Maximilien Et La Moitie, illustré par David Cochard, Léha, 2017

The award is given for works in a specialized segment of sff field, described in the Wikipedia:

Uchronia refers to a hypothetical or fictional time-period of our world, in contrast to altogether fictional lands or worlds. A concept similar to alternate history but different in the manner that uchronic times are not easily defined.

Middle-Earth and the Hyborean Age are examples of uchronic settings.

Goodreads Choice Awards 2018 Semi-Final Round

Semi-final round voting has begun in the Goodreads Choice Awards: The Best Books 2018 and will continue through November 11.

There are 21 categories overall. Goodreads recommended 15 books in the opening round and allowed write-ins, which have filled another five spots on the semi-final ballot. In the Science Fiction and Fantasy categories these write-ins made the cut —


  • The Calculating Stars by Mary Robinette Kowal
  • The Consuming Fire by John Scalzi
  • The Gone World by Tom Sweterlitsch
  • Space Opera by Catherynne Valente
  • Star Wars: Thrawn: Alliances by Timothy Zahn


  • Time’s Convert by Deborah Harkness
  • Magic Triumphs by Ilona Andrews
  • The Girl in the Tower by Katherine Arden
  • Foundryside by Robert Jackson Bennett
  • Bloody Rose by Nicholas Eames

So here are the books in the running in these categories of genre interest —


Fifth Annual Philip K. Dick European Science Fiction Film Festival Winners

The Philip K. Dick European Science Fiction Film Festival has announced the award winners of its fifth annual event. The gathering saluted the legacy of novelist Philip K. Dick with a slate of independent science fiction films, nine of which were honored for their cinematic excellence. The festival was held in Lille, France from October 25-26 and in Cologne, Germany from November 1-2.

It’s A Clear Day


  • It’s a Clear Day (2017)

Director: María Vázquez

Run Time/Country: 14 min, Spain

Synopsis: A woman is planning on giving a lecture on the famous science fiction writer Philip K. Dick. Everything seems like her everyday routine, except for a little excitement because of the event. But as time passes she will discover nothing is what it seems.


  • Metta Via (2017)

Director: Warren Flanagan

Run Time/Country: 10 min, Canada

Synopsis: Set in the future, a young woman wakes up in a mysterious temple-like room and must figure out her purpose.


  • The Ash: Safe Haven (2017)

Director: Marty Stalker

Run Time/Country: 17 min, UK

Synopsis: A deadly volcanic ash cloud. A 12-year-old boy besieged by the bloodthirsty infected. When the ash falls, terror rises.


  • Sound From the Deep (2017)

Director: Antti Laakso, Joonas Allonen

Run Time/Country: 29 min, Finland

Synopsis: An international research group is searching natural resources from the Arctic Ocean. They pick up a strange underwater sound from far north, and start to follow it to the uncharted waters. Inspired by the works of H.P. Lovecraft.


  • Nazi VR (2017)

Director: David Freid

Run Time/Country: 17 min, Germany

Synopsis: The High Tech Prosecution of a WWII Nazi Guard with virtual reality.


  • Eclipse (2018)

Director: Aymeric Favre

Run Time/Country: 40 min, France

Synopsis: An immersive “hyper-reality” experience and a glimpse into tomorrow’s cinema. Contrary to most VR experiences dedicated to entertainment, this exhibition is a four-player interactive science fiction short film enhanced by physical effects, full body awareness and a total freedom of movements.


  • APEX (2018)

Director: Stuart T. Birchall

Run Time/Country: 4 min, UK

Synopsis: Emergence of a hybrid human-alien consciousness from the void.


  • December 17 (2016)

Director: Yuji Hariu

Run Time/Country: 15 min, Japan

Synopsis: In the near future, a family comes face to face with a dangerous secret about their sons.


  • Tous les jours (2017)

Director: Philippe Orreindy

Run Time/Country: 14 min, France

Synopsis: A company director is under the perverse psychological influence of her superior. But is it real or is it an hallucination caused by her anguish?


2018 World Fantasy Awards

The World Fantasy Awards were presented November 4 at the World Fantasy Convention in Baltimore, Maryland.


For 2018, the Life Achievement Awards were given to:

  • Charles de Lint
  • Elizabeth Wollheim



  • The Changeling by Victor LaValle (Spiegel & Grau/Canongate Press UK)
  • Jade City by Fonda Lee (Orbit)


  • Passing Strange by Ellen Klages (

SHORT FICTION under 10,000 words

  • “The Birding: A Fairy Tale” by Natalia Theodoridou (Strange Horizons, Dec. 18, 2017)

ANTHOLOGY multiple author original or reprint single or multiple editors

  • The New Voices of Fantasy, edited by Peter S. Beagle and Jacob Weisman (Tachyon Publications)

COLLECTION single author/team original or reprint single or multiple editors

  • The Emerald Circus by Jane Yolen (Tachyon Publications)


  • Gregory Manchess


  • Harry Brockway, Patrick McGrath, and Danel Olson for Writing Madness (Centipede Press)


  • Justina Ireland and Troy L. Wiggins, for FIYAH: Magazine of Black Speculative Fiction.

Winners who were present:

  • Gregory Manchess

  • Jacob Weisman

  • Natalia Theodoridou

  • Ellen Klages

  • Fonda Lee