Pixel Scroll 11/3/22 And When The File Breaks The Pixel Will Scroll

(1) GATHERING NOMINATIONS. The BSFA Awards 2022: Longlist Nominations are open. According to their tweet anyone can suggest works. However, only BSFA members have a vote in the outcome.

(2) THE STARS MY QUESTIONATION. LearnedLeague has another SF-related quiz, this one written (“smithed” in LL parlance) by Filer Frasher Sherman. “Invasions From Outer Space: Film and TV” can be found here.

David Goldfarb says 1778 people played the quiz, which is a pretty good turnout for a One-Day.

(3) CALLS FOR HELP. Here are two GoFundMes for SFF writers who need help with medical expenses:

 R.S.A. Garcia: “Help R. S. A. Garcia Pay for Cancer Expenses”. (The full medical details and the reasons for the appeal are at the link.)

…However, this past week, the doctors found some worrying signs of endometrial cancer and have recommended a full hysterectomy, in addition to the other procedures. The recovery time required and the need to do reconstructive surgery means that I don’t expect to be able to work again for another 6 months to a year.

I was let go from my job when I had my surgery. Since then, my sister’s has been covering all our household expenses but we now find ourselves in a difficult situation.

…My medical costs are mounting with a minimum of two surgeries planned for the next six months and potentially as many as four. The results of my biopsy on November 25, will determine the next phase of my treatment. We’re already in debt and have liquidated our insurance policies to try to keep afloat.

So we’re asking for your help….

James A. Moore: “The Hits Keep Coming”. The appeal at the link contains the grim details, as related by its organizer, Christopher Golden.

…There will be time and many costs involved, but this GoFundMe is really meant only as a bridge to help Jim get to wherever they will end up next. It’s hard to fathom how anyone could endure a string of events like this, but Jim endures. Please help if you can, and if you can’t donate anything, please share with anyone you think will be able to do so…. 

(4) WHERE EREWHON IS NOW. Tor.com reports that Erewhon Books has been acquired by Kensington Publishing.

Kensington Publishing recently acquired fellow independent publisher Erewhon Books.

Erewhon—established in 2018, which boasts a lineup of authors including C. L. Polk, E. Lily Yu, Benjamin Rosenbaum, and Cassandra Khaw—is now an imprint of Kensington. The acquisition includes Erewhon’s backlist as well as their titles coming out through 2024. Editorial oversight will continue under Erewhon Publisher Sarah Guan, with the rest of the Erewhon team also joining Kensington. Starting in 2023, Penguin Random House Publisher Services will begin distributing all of their books….

Erewhon was founded by Liz Gorinsky, who left in March to “pursue other projects”.

(5) SCREENING THE ALIENS. Either the big screen or the little. Cora Buhlert’s new “Non-Fiction Spotlight” is for The Aliens Are Here – Extraterrestrial Visitors in American Cinema and Television by Fraser A. Sherman”.

Tell us about your book.

The Aliens Are Here: Extraterrestrial Visitors in American Cinema and Television looks at how movies and TV have portrayed Earth’s encounters with beings from other worlds. Each chapter takes a different topic — alien invaders, aliens as refugees, alien/Terran love stories, UFO abduction films, genre mashups — and looks at related films, themes and tropes. Then I spotlight one to three movies or TV shows relevant to the chapter topic. The alien monsters chapter, for instance, has The Thing From Another WorldThe Thing and The Andromeda Strain.

(6) TAKING NOTES. Laura Anne Gilman chats with CrimeReads about her new historical fantasy novel. “History Is Shouting…All You Need to Do Is Listen”.

… As every historian, pro or amateur, knows, history repeats itself. That is, events happen in a cyclical pattern, over and over, in varying lengths of time. The story of history is a reminder even when we think that we’re learning from experience, that learning never seems to stick for more than a generation or two before dissipating into mist. Or, as I like to put it, history repeats itself because it knows we’re not listening. And it will get louder and louder until we do.

Which for the political scientist and pundit may be depressing as hell, but for the historical novelist it’s a candy store just waiting to be plundered. All that wild, wonderful detail you literally couldn’t make up without someone calling hijinks, actually happened….

(7) BAEN SALE. Baen Books’ Veteran’s Day November Ebook Sale is on. Click through for a list of Baen authors with military service and the titles of their ebooks being offered at a $1 discount. Sale ends November 30, 2022. Available wherever Baen Ebooks are sold.

(8) MEMORY LANE.

1934 [By Cat Eldridge.] Ngaio Marsh’s A Man Lay Dead

I truly love country house mysteries.  I truly do. There’s A. E. Milne’s The Red House Murder and Agatha Christie’s Hercule Poirot’s Christmas as novels and Gosford Park and Knives Out as the modern exemplars of it in films. And here we have a woman born and raised far from Britain, in New Zealand to be precise, with a country house murder. 

Ngaio Marsh was born in 1895 Christchurch, New Zealand where she lived until 1928, when she went to London with friends on whom he would base the Lamprey family in the Surfeit of Lampreys novel, her tenth novel to feature Roderick Alleyn. Then after she spent time in both countries.

So let’s us talk about A Man Lay Dead which as I said is a country house murder. It is the first novel to feature Roderick Alleyn, and was first published in 1934 by Geoffrey Bles in London. 

The plot concerns a murder committed during a detective game of murder at a weekend party in a country house.  But she hasn’t really developed the character of Alleyn yet so another character is focused on.

WE ARE GOING TO TELL A STORY HERE, SO BEWARE!

A small group of guests at Sir Hubert Handesley’s estate including a man about town, several of his nieces, an art expert, a gossip reporter, and pay attention as Marsh makes sure you notice him, a butler of Russian ancestry.

The murder mystery game in which one of the guests is of course chosen to be the murderer and someone to be murdered by him or her. At the time of the murderer’s choice, he tells the victim they’re dead.

At that point, the lights go out, a loud bell rings, and then everyone comes back to together for yet more drinks and to piece together who did it. It is all intended to be a good hearted diversion, except that the corpse is very, very real.

Alleyn has his holiday with Troy to investigate a murder connected to a stolen chalice in the area, but he’s called when this murder occurs at uncle’s estate.

NO MORE STORY TO BE TOLD, SO COME BACK AND I’LL POUR VINTAGE BRANDY

Marsh had being reading a short story by Christie or Sayers, she forgots which, and wondered if she could write a mystery novel set in the Murder Game which was popular at English weekend parties. So she bought some composition books and set down to write.

Marsh regretted this novel immensely once she’d refined her writing skills in years to come. Joanne Drayton noted in Ngaio Marsh: Her life in crime that she would “cringe at the thought of her first novel with its barely plausible story line, shallow characterization and confined setting”. 

It would later be adapted for the Inspector Alleyn Mysteries series, the Angela North character here was replaced by Agatha Troy who appears in later novels as Alleyn’s romantic interest and eventual wife. 

It, like almost everything Marsh did, is of course available from the usual suspects.

(9) TODAY’S BIRTHDAYS.

[Compiled by Cat Eldridge.]

  • Born November 3, 1921 Charles Bronson. He didn’t do a lot of genre acting but I’ve got him in One Step Beyond as Yank Dawson in “The Last Round” and he’s in The Twilight Zone in “Two” as The Man opposite Elizabeth Montgomery as The Women. He was also in Master of The World which is based on the Verne novel Robur the Conqueror and its sequel Master of the World. (Died 2003.)
  • Born November 3, 1931 Monica Vitti. She’s best remembered in the English-language movie-going world for her performance as the lead agent in Modesty Blaise. It‘s rather loosely based upon the Modesty Blaise strip by Peter O’Donnell, who co-wrote the original story upon which Evan Jones based his screenplay. (Died 2022.)
  • Born November 3, 1933 Ken Berry. He’s receiving Birthday Honors for Disney’s The Cat from Outer Space in which he was Dr. Frank Wilson. No, the cat wasn’t Goose. Nice idea though. And he played seven different roles on the original Fantasy Island. Also, like pretty much everyone else. he was a guest performer on Rowan & Martin’s Laugh-In. I know it’s not genre, I just find that amusing. (Died 2018.)
  • Born November 3, 1933 Jeremy Brett. Still my favorite Holmes of all time. He played him in four Granada TV series from 1984 to 1994 in a total of 41 episodes. One source said he was cast as Bond at one point, but turned the part down, feeling that playing 007 would harm his career. Lazenby was cast instead. I can’t actually say it’s fact, but it is a great story. (Died 1995.)
  • Born November 3, 1933 Aneta Corsaut. If you saw The Blob, the original Fifties version, she was Jane Martin. Her only other genre film work was as an uncredited tourist mother in Blazing Saddles. And unless I’m mistaken, she had no other genre series work at all though she was popular in Westerns. She is best remembered for playing Helen Crump on The Andy Griffith Show. (Died 1995.)
  • Born November 3, 1952 Eileen Wilks, 70. Her principal genre series is the World of Lupi, a FBI procedural intertwined with shapeshifters, dragons and the multiverse. Highly entertaining, sometimes considered romance novels though I don’t consider them so. The audiobooks are amazing as well! I re- listened to several of them recently and the steel booted Suck Fairy saw her boots rust away.
  • Born November 3, 1956 Kevin Murphy, 66. Best known as the voice and puppeteer of Tom Servo for nine years on the Mystery Science Theater 3000. He was also the writer for the show for eleven years. I’m surprised the series was never nominated for a Hugo in the Long Form or Shot Form. Does it not qualify?
  • Born November 3, 1963 Brian Henson, 59.  Can we all agree that The Happytime Murders should never have been done?  Wash it out of your consciousness with Muppet Treasure Island or perhaps The Muppet Christmas Carol. If you want something darker, he was a puppeteer on The Witches, and the chief puppeteer on Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles. And he voices Hoggle in Labyrinth.

(10) COMICS SECTION.

  • Tom Gauld extols the advantages of shopping at a haunted bookshop.

(11) BE ON THE LOOKOUT. The Guardian has many good things to say about Neptune Frost, an Afrofuturist movie that a couple of people have been pushing for the Best Dramatic Presentation Hugo next year: “Neptune Frost review – exhilarating Afrofuturist musical battles exploitation”.

Black Panther 2 is imminent, but in many ways the extraordinary Neptune Frost is the real Afrofuturist deal: a transgressive socialist Wakanda with an exoskeleton of punk geopolitics bolted on. As well as a denunciation of the western techno-centric order, it’s a musical lesson in conscious collaboration between the developed and developing world that Hollywood could learn from – instead of just piggybacking on African aesthetics. Filmed in Rwanda but set in Burundi, the story was developed by US musician Saul Williams – drawing on material from his recent albums – and his Rwandan wife Anisia Uzeyman; they share the directorial credit…

(12) PASSING THE HELMET. Guardian reports on “‘A joke that went out of control’: crowdfunding weapons for Ukraine’s war”.

By Christmas, 50 hardly used FV103 Spartan armoured personnel carriers (APCs), until recently the property of the British army, and currently in warehouses in secret locations across the UK, will arrive on the frontline in Ukraine’s war with Russia in time for the toughest winter conditions.

The transfer, the largest of such APCs to Ukraine, is not due to British munificence nor to procurement by the Ukrainian ministry of defence.

It is instead just the latest example of the extraordinary scale and indeed speed of the crowdfunding campaigns that have been powering the Ukrainian military since the early days of the war.

The fundraising appeal for the armoured vehicles – tagline “Grab them all” – had only been launched on Wednesday by the Serhiy Prytula charity foundation, named after its founder, a popular comedian and TV presenter with a sizeable online following….

(13) JEOPARDY! Unlike tonight’s Jeopardy! contestants, Andrew Porter recognized what the right response should be.

Final Jeopardy: Novel Locales

Answer: This place from a 1933 novel lies in the valley of the Blue Moon, below a peak called Karakal.

Wrong questions: What is the Big Valley?; What is Brigadoon?; What is Xanadu?

Right question: What is Shangri La?

(14) FELINES OF FAME. Can there be any doubt we want to know this? “The 10 Most Famous Cats In Animated TV Shows” according to CBR.com. (I can’t find any I would kick out, but I wish Top Cat was on the list.)

…From the earliest animations, where they were nothing more than silent presence, to the more modern takes, where they have plenty of sasses to share, these felines are more than the fond memories they give their fans. Most people likely have a fictional cat that they remember, and going back to watch the series they’re from can bring nostalgia and a ton of laughs….

(15) DON’T LET IT HANG YOU UP. Rory Cellan Jones explains how cell phones can for the first time take pictures in this 2001 clip from the BBC that dropped today.

(16) VIDEO OF THE DAY. [Item by Martin Morse Wooster.] In “Honest Game Trailers: Stardew Valley,” Fandom Games says this game is so soothing “it’s like Animal Crossing went to therapy.”  But the game offers an escape by “having adventures you could never have in real life: owning your own home, forming meaningful relationships, and finding satisfaction in your work.” But if you’re tired of doing chores, head to the underground caves where you can slay demons and dinosaurs!

[Thanks to Michael Toman, Cat Eldridge, Mike Kennedy, Cora Buhlert, David Goldfarb, Martin Morse Wooster, JJ, John King Tarpinian, Chris Barkley, and Andrew Porter for some of these stories. Title debit belongs to File 770 contributing editor of the day Jack Lint.]

2021 BSFA Awards

The British Science Fiction Association today announced the winners of the 2021 BSFA Awards.

The awards are voted on by members of the British Science Fiction Association and by the members of the year’s Eastercon, the national science fiction convention, held since 1955.

The BSFA Awards have been presented annually since 1970. This year marks the launch of a new category, the Best Book for Younger Readers.

 BEST BOOK FOR YOUNGER READERS

  • Iron Widow, by Xiran Jay Zhao, Rock the Boat

BEST NOVEL

  • Shards of Earth by Adrian Tchaikovsky, Tor

BEST SHORTER FICTION

  • ‘Fireheart Tiger’ by Aliette de Bodard, Tor.com

BEST NON-FICTION

  • Worlds Apart: Worldbuilding in Fantasy and Science Fiction, ed. Francesca T. Barbini, Luna Publishing

BEST ARTWORK

  • Glasgow Green Woman by Iain Clark, Glasgow2024
Aliette de Bodard with BSFA Award

2021 BSFA Awards Shortlist

The British Science Fiction Association today announced the shortlist of nominees for the BSFA Awards, for work published in 2021.

The awards are voted on by members of the British Science Fiction Association and by the members of the year’s Eastercon, the national science fiction convention, held since 1955. Voting opens for BSFA members on Monday, February 28 at bsfa.co.uk

 This year’s Eastercon, Reclamation, will be held April 15-19, and is where the winners will be announced. The BSFA Awards ceremony will be free to attend by all members of Eastercon and nominees: details will be released closer to the date.

Members of the BSFA will receive a PDF with excerpts of the nominated works via an emailed newsletter in advance of the convention, and a physical copy of the Awards Booklet at a later date.

The BSFA Awards have been presented annually since 1970. This year marks the launch of a new category, the Best Book for Younger Readers.

 BEST BOOK FOR YOUNGER READERS

  • The Raven Heir by Stephanie Burgis, Bloomsbury Children’s Books
  • A Snake Falls to Earth, by Darcie Little Badger, Levine Querido
  • Iron Widow, by Xiran Jay Zhao, Rock the Boat
  • Redemptor, by Jordan Ifueko, Hot Key Books
  • The Empty Orchestra, by Elizabeth Priest, Luna Press Publishing
  • Utterly Dark and the Face of the Deep by Philip Reeve, David Fickling Books

BEST NOVEL

  • A Desolation Called Peace by Arkady Martine, Tor
  • Blackthorn Winter by Liz Williams, NewCon Press
  • Purgatory Mount by Adam Roberts, Gollancz
  • Shards of Earth by Adrian Tchaikovsky, Tor
  • Skyward Inn by Aliya Whiteley, Solaris
  • Green Man’s Challenge by Juliet E. McKenna, Wizard’s Tower Press

BEST SHORTER FICTION

  • ‘Fireheart Tiger’ by Aliette de Bodard, Tor.com
  • ‘Light Chaser’ by Peter F. Hamilton, Gareth L. Powell, Tor.com
  • ‘O2 Arena’ by Oghenechovwe Donald Ekpeki, Galaxy Edge Magazine
  • ‘Things Can Only Get Better’ by Fiona Moore, Abyss & Apex

BEST NON-FICTION

  • Cyberpunk Culture and Psychology: Seeing Through the Mirrorshades, by Anna McFarlane, Routledge
  • Diverse Futures: Science Fiction and Authors of Color, by Joy Sanchez-Taylor, Ohio State Press
  • The Anthropocene Unconscious: Climate Catastrophe Culture, by Mark Bould, Verso Books
  • Worlds Apart: Worldbuilding in Fantasy and Science Fiction, ed. Francesca T. Barbini, Luna Publishing
  • Octothorpe Podcast, by John Coxon, Alison Scott, and Liz Batty, Octothorpe
  • Science Fiction and the Pathways out of the COVID Crisis, by Val Nolan, The Polyphony

BEST ARTWORK

  • Cover of Eugen Bacon’s Danged Black Thing, by Peter Lo / Kara Walker, Transit Lounge Publishing
  • Cover of Eugen Bacon’s Saving Shadows, by Elena Betti, NewCon Press
  • Cover of Suyi Davies Okungbowa’s Son of the Storm, by Dan dos Santos / Lauren Panepinto, Orbit
  • Cover of Oghenechovwe Donald Ekpeki (ed.)’s The Year’s Best African Speculative Fiction, by Maria Spada
  • Glasgow Green Woman by Iain Clark, Glasgow2024

Second Round of 2021 BSFA Awards Nominations Begins

The 2019 BSFA Award trophy

British Science Fiction Association members will have until February 21 to help choose the BSFA Awards shortlists for works published in 2021. The voting form is available to BSFA members here.

In the first round, members nominated a longlist of 74 novels, 62 works of short fiction, 25 items of nonfiction, and 28 artworks.

Once voters have determined the shortlist, BSFA members and members of the British national science fiction convention Eastercon will vote for the winners.

The full longlists follow:

BEST ARTWORK LONGLIST

  • Black Corporeal (Between This Air), by Julianknxx
  • Brick Lane Foundation, by Abbas Zahedi
  • Build or Destroy, by Rashaad Newsome
  • Cover of Danielle Lainton & Louise Coquio (eds)’s Pashtarina’s Peacocks: For Storm Constantine, by Ruby
  • Cover of Eugen Bacon’s Danged Black Thing, by Peter Lo / Kara Walker
  • Cover of Eugen Bacon’s Saving Shadows, Elena Betti / Ian Whates
  • Cover of Freda Warrington and Liz Williams’ Shadows on the Hillside, by Danielle Lainton
  • Cover of Jamie Mollart’s Kings of a Dead World, by Heike Schüssler
  • Cover of Rian Hughes’ The Back Locomotive, by Rian Hughes
  • Cover of Rosa Rankin-Gee’s Dreamland (artist’s name not given)
  • Cover of Shift #3, by Mark Montague
  • Cover of Shift #7, by Ian D Paterson
  • Cover of Simon Jimenez’s The Vanished Bird (2021 paperback edition), artist’s name not given
  • Cover of Suyi Davies Okungbowa’s Son of the Storm, by Dan dos Santos / Lauren Panepinto
  • Cover of The Year’s Best African Speculative Fiction Anthology, Maria Spada
  • Cover of Xueting Christine Ni (ed.)’s Sinopticon, by Bradley Sharp
  • Exhibition at 180 The Strand, by Ryoji Ikeda
  • Flyaway, by Kathleen Jennings
  • Late Hangout at Zuko’s, by Devin Elle Kurtz
  • MILK, by STREF (Stephen White)
  • Morando, by a’strict
  • Narrow Escape, by Larry MacDougall
  • Renaissance Generative Dreams: AI Cinema, by Refik Anadol
  • Rupture No. 1, by Heather Phillipson
  • Shift Pin-Up, by Warwick Fraser-Croombe
  • The Scottish Green Lady (for Glasgow in 24), by Iain Clarke
  • This Is The Future, by Hito Steyerl
  • Viscera, by Allissa Chan

BEST FICTION FOR YOUNGER READERS LONGLIST

  • A Snake Falls to Earth, by Darcie Little Badger
  • All Our Hidden Gifts, by Caroline O’Donoghue
  • Iron Widow, by Xiran Jay Zhao
  • Lionheart Girl, by Yaba Badoe
  • Monsters of Brookhaven, by Pádraig Kenny
  • Noor, by Nnedi Okorafor
  • Redemptor, by Jordan Ifueko
  • Show Us Who You Are (Knights Of), Elle McNicoll
  • Skywake: Invasion, by Jamie Russell
  • Stella’s Stellar Hair, by Yesenia Moises
  • The Boy with Wings, by Lenny Henry, Mark Buckingham
  • The Empty Orchestra, by Elizabeth Priest
  • The False Rose, Jakob Wegelius, trans. Peter Graves
  • The Gilded Ones, by Namina Forna
  • The Outrage, by William Hussey
  • The Planet in a Pickle Jar, by Martin Stanev
  • The Raven’s Heir, by Stephanie Burgis
  • The Shadows of Rookhaven, by Pádraig Kenny,
  • The Stuff Between the Stars: How Vera Rubin discovered most of the Universe, Sandra Nickel, illus. Aimée Sicuro
  • Utterly dark and the face of the deep, by Philip Reeve
  • Victories Greater Than Death, by Charlie Jane Anders

BEST NOVEL LONGLIST

  • 10 Low, by Starke Holburn
  • A Desolation Called Peace, by Arkady Martine
  • A Heart Divided, by Jin Yong
  • Alien 3, by Pat Cadigan and William Gibson
  • All our Hidden Gifts, by Caroline O’Donoghue
  • All the Murmuring Bones, by A.G. Slatter
  • Anna, by Sammy HK Smith
  • Artifact Sapce, by Miles Cameron
  • Barbarians of the Beyond, by Matthew Hughes
  • Bewilderment, by Richard Powers
  • Black Water Sister, by Zen Cho
  • Blackthorn Winter, Liz Williams
  • Blood Red Sand, by Damien Larkin
  • Catalyst Gate, by Megan O’Keefe
  • Cloud Cuckoo Land, by Anthony Doerr
  • Cwen, by Alice Albinia
  • Darkest, by Paul L. Arvidson
  • Discord’s Shadow, by K. S. Dearsley
  • Dreamland, by Rosa Rankin-Gee
  • Elder Race, by Adrian Tchaikovsky
  • Empire of the Vampire, by Jay Kristoff
  • Far From the Light of Heaven, by Tade Thompson
  • Fire of the Dark Triad, by Asya Semenovich
  • Firebreak, by Nicole Kornher-Stace
  • Four Dervishes, by Hammad Rind
  • Fugitive Telemetry, by Martha Wells
  • Galactic Hellcats, by Marie Vibbert
  • Gardens of Earth, by Mark Iles
  • Gutter Child, by Jael Richardson
  • Hail Mary, by Andy Weir
  • Iron Widow, by Xiran Jay Zhao
  • Jade Legacy, Fonda Lee
  • Kings of a Dead World, by Jamie Mollart
  • Klara and the Sun, by Kazuo Ishiguro
  • Library for the Dead, by T.L. Huchu
  • Light Chaser, by Peter F. Hamilton and Gareth L. Powell
  • Machinehood, by S.B. Divya
  • Master of Djinn, by P. Djeli Clarke
  • Murder at the Mushaira, by Raza Mir
  • My Brother the Messiah, by Martin Vopenka
  • New Gods, by Robin Triggs
  • Notes from the Burning Age, by Claire North
  • On Fragile Waves, by E. Lily Yu
  • One Day all This Will be Yours, by Adrian Tchaikovsky
  • Perhaps the Stars, by Ada Palmer
  • Plague Birds, by Jason Sanford
  • Purgatory Mount, by Adam Roberts
  • Remote Control, by Nnedi Okorofor
  • Requiem Moon, by C. T. Rwizi
  • Shadows of Darkness: Remnants of Resistance, by Jonah S. White
  • Shards of Earth, by Adrian Tchaikovsky
  • Skyward Inn, by Aliya Whiteley
  • Son of the Storm, by Suyi Davies Okungbowa
  • Termination Shock, by Neal Stephenson
  • The Actual Star, by Monica Byrne
  • The Actuality, by Paul Braddon
  • The Chosen and the Beautiful, by Nghi Vo
  • The Fallen, by Ada Hoffmann
  • The Green Man’s Challenge, by Juliet E McKenna
  • The Jasmine Throne, by Tasha Suri
  • The Kingdoms, by Natasha Pulley
  • The Maleficent Seven, by Cameron Johnston
  • The Past is Red, by Catherynne M. Valente
  • The Rage Room, by Lisa de Nikolits
  • The Raven’s Heir, by Stephanie Burgis
  • The Seep, by Chana Porter
  • The Unravelling, by Benjamin Rosenbaum
  • The Upper World, by Femi Fadugba
  • The Wisdom of Crowds, by Joe Abercrombie
  • This Is Our Undoing, by Lorraine Wilson
  • Three Twins at the Crater School, by Chaz Brentley
  • Twenty Five To Life, by RWW Greene
  • Wendy, Darling, by A. C. Wise
  • You Sexy Thing, by Cat Rambo
  • BEST SHORT FICTION LONGLIST
  • What is Mercy?, by Amal Singh
  • A Blind Eye, by M. H. Ayinde
  • Advanced Triggernometry, by Stark Holborn
  • An Array of Worlds as a Rose Unfurling in Time, by Shreya Anasuya
  • Clockwork Sister, by M.E. Rodman
  • Dog and Pony Show, by Robert Jeschonek
  • Down and Out under the Tannhauser Gate, by David Gullen
  • Dream Eater, by Nemma Wollenfang
  • Dreamports, by Tlotlo Tsamaase
  • Efficiency, by Paolo Bacigalupi
  • Fanfiction for a Grimdark Universe, by Vanessa Fogg
  • Fireheart Tiger, by Aliette de Bodard
  • First Person Singular, by Haruki Murakami
  • Fish, by Ida Keogh
  • Flight, by Innocent Chizaram Ilo
  • Flyaway, by Kathleen Jennings
  • Her Garden, the Size of Her Palm, by Yukimi Ogawa
  • If The Martians Have Magic, by P. Djeli Clark
  • Immersion, by Aliette de Bodard
  • Just Enough Rain, by PH Lee
  • Light Chaser, by Peter F Hamilton and Gareth L Powell
  • Metal Like Blood in the Dark, by T. Kingfisher
  • O2 Arena, by Oghenechovwe Donald Ekpeki
  • Prime Meridian, by Silvia Moreno-Garcia
  • Proof, by Induction, by Jose Pablo Iriarte
  • Scars, by Bora Chung
  • Secrets of the Kath, by Fatima Taqvi
  • Seven Horrors, by Fabio Fernandes
  • Shutdown/Restart, by Jo Ross-Battett
  • Sorry We Missed You!, by Aun-Juli Riddle
  • The Abomination, by Nuzo Onoh
  • The Alien Invasion, by Ely Percy
  • The Alien Stars, by Tim Pratt
  • The Andraiad, by Tim Major
  • The Best Damned Barbershop in Hell, by Bruce Arthurs
  • The Center of the Universe, by Nadia Shammas
  • The Chorus, by Aliya Whiteley
  • The Constellation of Alarion, by John Houlihan
  • The Failing Name, by Eugen Bacon and Seb Doubinsky
  • The Farmers and the Farmed, by William C. Powell
  • The Forlorn Hope, by Verity Holloway
  • The Future God of Love, by Dilman Dila
  • The Ghosts of Trees, by Fiona Moore
  • The Graveyard, by Eleanor Arnason
  • The Hungry Dark, by Simon Bestwick
  • The Lay of Lilyfinger, by G.V. Anderson
  • The Man Who Turned Into Gandhi, by Shovon Chowdhury
  • The Mermaid Astronaut, by Yoon Ha Lee
  • The Metric, by David Moles
  • The Musuem For Forgetting, by Peter M Sutton
  • The Plus One, by Marie Vibbert
  • The Samundar Can be Any Color, Fatima Taqvi, Flash Fiction Online
  • The Song of the Moohee, by Emmett Swan
  • The Tale of Jaja and Canti, by Tobi Ogundiran
  • The Walls of Benin City, by M. H. Ayinde
  • Things Can Only Get Better, by Fiona Moore
  • Virtual Snapshots, by Tlotlo Tsamaase
  • White Rose, Red Rose, by Rachel Swirsky
  • Worldshifter, by Paul Di Filippo
  • Zeno’s Paradise, by E. J. Delaney

BEST NON-FICTION LONGLIST

  • A Swim in a Pond in the Rain, by George Saunders
  • Blake’s 7 Annual 1982, eds Grahame Robertson and Carole Ramsay
  • Cyberpunk Culture and Psychology: Seeing Through the Mirrorshades, by Anna McFarlane
  • Debarkle, by Camestros Felapton
  • Diverse Futures: Science Fiction and Authors of Colour, by Joy Sanchez-Taylor
  • Extraterrestrial, by Avi Loeb
  • Gendering Time, Timing Gender, by PM Biswas
  • Manifestos of Futurisms, by Bodhisattva Chattopadhyay
  • Octothorpe Podcast, by John Coxon, Alison Scott, and Liz Batty
  • On Writing Narratives, Questioning Standards, and Oral Traditions in Storytelling, by K. S. Villoso
  • Science Fiction and the Pathways out of the COVID Crisis, by Val Nolan
  • Science Fiction in Translation, by Ian Campbell
  • Science Fiction: A Guide for the Perplexed, by Sheryl Vint
  • Seduced, by the Ruler’s Gaze: An Indian Perspective on Seth Dickinson’s Masquerade, by Sid Jain
  • Space Forces: A Critical History of Life in Outer Space, by Fred Scharmen
  • Speculative Sex: Queering Aqueous Natures and Biotechnological Futures in Larissa Lai’s Salt Fish Girl, by Sarah Bezan
  • Star Warriors of the Modern Raj: Materiality, Mythology and Technology of Indian Science Fiction, by Sami Ahmed Khan
  • Storylistening, by Sarah Dillon and Claire Craig
  • The Anthropocene in Frank Herbert’s Dune Trilogy, by Tara B.M. Smith
  • The Anthropocene Unconscious: Climate Catastrophe in Contemporary Culture, by Mark Bould
  • The History of Science Fiction: A Graphic Novel Adventure, by Xavier Dolla, illus. Djibril Morissette-Phan
  • The Importance of Being Interested, by Robin Ince
  • World of Warcraft: New Flavors of Azeroth, by Chelsea Monroe-Cassel
  • Worlds Apart: Worldbuilding in Fantasy and Science Fiction, ed. Francesca T Barbini
  • Writing the Contemporary Uncanny, by Jane Alexander

2020 BSFA Awards

The British Science Fiction Association announced the BSFA Awards 2020 winners on April 4.

The BSFA Awards have been presented annually since 1970. The awards are voted on by members of the British Science Fiction Association and by the members of the year’s Eastercon, the national science fiction convention, held since 1955.

Best Artwork

  • Iain Clarke, Shipbuilding Over the Clyde, Art for Glasgow in 2024 WorldCon bid.

Best Short Fiction (under 40,000 words)

  • Ida Keogh, ‘Infinite Tea in the Demara Cafe’, Londoncentric, Newcon Press. Edited by Ian Whates.

Best Non-Fiction

  • Adam Roberts, It’s the End of the World: But What Are We Really Afraid Of?, Elliot & Thompson.

Best Novel

  • N.K. Jemisin, The City We Became, Orbit.

Pixel Scroll 4/3/21 Oh, Dear, One Of My Cats Just Brought Me Half A Pixel

(1) BSFA AWARDS LINK CHANGE. Use this link instead of the one posted yesterday to view the BSFA Awards ceremony on April 4.

BSFA chair Allen Stroud says, “Apologies for the alteration. Owing to a case of deleting a scheduled event (totally my fault), the url for the awards has changed.”

(2) WFC PROGRESS REPORT. World Fantasy Convention 2021 – which still plans an in-person con in Montreal this November – has released Progress Report #2. Chair Diane Lacey says:

…In the midst of these difficult times, we want to assure everyone that we are actively monitoring the COVID-19 situation. We’re working hard to ascertain every contingency that may have an impact on WFC 2021. We will make modifications to our plans accordingly to keep our membership safe. We sincerely hope there will be progress in controlling and conquering the virus long before our convention, and we are quite confident we will be able to hold an in person convention. We look forward to welcoming you all to Montréal. Please feel free to contact us at any time with your concerns or questions….

(3) 2024 WORLDCON BID NEWS. The UK in 2024 bid committee aired this video update during the virtual Eastercon:

(4) SLF PODCAST LAUNCHES. The Speculative Literature Foundation has started a new podcast, “Mohanraj and Rosenbaum Are Humans”, hosted by Mary Anne Mohanraj and Benjamin Rosenbaum.

Join two old friends as they talk about science fiction, community, the writing life, teaching, parenting, and a whole lot more. Does Ben really think you should let your kids touch the stove, and did he really burn his son’s homework? Why did he write a novel with no men or women in it? What exactly did a young Mary Anne do to appall her aunts in college, and how did it lead circuitously to her founding science fiction’s longest-running webzine? Mohanraj and Rosenbaum… Are Humans? Yes, yes they are.

Episodes of the Spring 2021 season are being released on Mondays and Thursdays, starting March 22. They’re available on major podcast platforms including Spotify, Apple Podcasts, YouTube, etc. Or tune into the “Mohanraj and Rosenbaum Are Humans” website. Episodes available so far are –

  1. Episode 1: “Introductions” (Published 22 March 2021)
  2. Bonus Episode 1: “The Capitol and the Cafe” (Published 25 March 2021)
  3. Episode 2: “The Toilet Seat Con Hook-Up” (Published 29 March 2021)

Mohanraj is the author of A Feast of Serendib, Bodies in Motion, The Stars Change, and twelve other titles. Mohanraj founded Hugo-nominated and World Fantasy Award-winning speculative literature magazine Strange Horizons, and serves as Executive Director of both DesiLit (desilit.org) and the Speculative Literature Foundation (speclit.org). Rosenbaum’s short stories have been nominated for the Hugo, Nebula, Sturgeon, Locus, BSFA, and World Fantasy Awards. He designed the Ennie-nominated Jewish historical fantasy tabletop roleplaying game Dream Apart, and serves on the board of Basel’s liberal Jewish congregation, Migwan. He lives in Switzerland with his wife Esther and a gradually emptying nest of children. His first SF novel, The Unravelling, is forthcoming from Erewhon Books.

(5) DC PROJECTS SHELVED. Two DC movies, Ava DuVernay’s New Gods and James Wan’s Aquaman spinoff The Trench, are “not moving forward” Warner Bros. and DC told The Hollywood Reporter.

…New Gods, which DuVernay has been developing as a directing vehicle with acclaimed comic book writer Tom King since 2018, would have brought to the screen the comic book characters created by the late and legendary artist Jack Kirby. DuVernay, however, remains in the DC fold and is currently working on the DC series Naomi for The CW.

The Trench, meanwhile, was to have been a horror-tinged project spinning out of Aquaman and focused on the group of deadly amphibious creatures seen in the $1 billion-grossing 2018 film. Noah Gardner and Aidan Fitzgerald had written the script, which Wan was developing as a producer with collaborator Peter Safran. Wan, too, remains in the DC fold as he is prepping to shoot Aquaman 2 for the studio later this year….

(6) THESE SPUDS WON’T PEEL THEMSELVES. Ted Chiang tells New Yorker readers “Why Computers Won’t Make Themselves Smarter”.

…The idea of an intelligence explosion was revived in 1993, by the author and computer scientist Vernor Vinge, who called it “the singularity,” and the idea has since achieved some popularity among technologists and philosophers. Books such as Nick Bostrom’s “Superintelligence: Paths, Dangers, Strategies,” Max Tegmark’s “Life 3.0: Being Human in the age of Artificial Intelligence,” and Stuart Russell’s “Human Compatible: Artificial Intelligence and the Problem of Control” all describe scenarios of “recursive self-improvement,” in which an artificial-intelligence program designs an improved version of itself repeatedly.

I believe that Good’s and Anselm’s arguments have something in common, which is that, in both cases, a lot of the work is being done by the initial definitions. These definitions seem superficially reasonable, which is why they are generally accepted at face value, but they deserve closer examination. I think that the more we scrutinize the implicit assumptions of Good’s argument, the less plausible the idea of an intelligence explosion becomes.

… Some proponents of an intelligence explosion argue that it’s possible to increase a system’s intelligence without fully understanding how the system works. They imply that intelligent systems, such as the human brain or an A.I. program, have one or more hidden “intelligence knobs,” and that we only need to be smart enough to find the knobs. I’m not sure that we currently have many good candidates for these knobs, so it’s hard to evaluate the reasonableness of this idea. Perhaps the most commonly suggested way to “turn up” artificial intelligence is to increase the speed of the hardware on which a program runs. Some have said that, once we create software that is as intelligent as a human being, running the software on a faster computer will effectively create superhuman intelligence. Would this lead to an intelligence explosion?…

(7) BLACK WIDOW SPINNING YOUR WAY. “We have unfinished business” is the keynote of  Marvel Studios’ Black Widow trailer dropped today. The movie comes to theaters or Disney+ with Premier Access on July 9.

(8) PENNY FRIERSON OBIT. Penny Frierson (1941-2021), co-chair of the 1986 Atlanta Worldcon, has died reports Guy H. Lillian III, who received the news through Charlotte Proctor.

Frierson joined fandom in 1968.  She chaired DeepSouthCon 15 in Birmingham, AL in 1977 and helped found the Birmingham Science Fiction Club in 1978.

Penny also was a member of the Southern Fandom Press Alliance. She won the Rebel Award in 1986.

She was married to Meade Frierson III, who predeceased her in 2001.

1992 Worldcon: Charlotte Proctor, Penny Frierson, Nicki Lynch, Rich Lynch.

(9) MEDIA BIRTHDAY.

  • April 3, 1953 — In London sixty-eight years ago, The War Of The Worlds based on the H.G. wells novel had its very first theatrical showing. It was the recipient of a 1954 Retro-Hugo Award at Noreascon 4 in 2004.  It was produced by George Pal, and directed by Byron Haskin. It starred Gene Barry and Ann Robinson. It was deemed culturally, historically, or aesthetically significant in 2011 by the United States Library of Congress and was selected for preservation in the National Film Registry. 

(10) TODAY’S BIRTHDAYS.

[Compiled by Cat Eldridge and John Hertz.]

  • Born April 3, 1783 Washington Irving. Best remembered for his short stories “Rip Van Winkle” and “The Legend of Sleepy Hollow”, both of which appear in The Sketch Book of Geoffrey Crayon, Gent. collection. The latter in particular has been endlessly reworked downed the centuries into genre fiction including the recent Sleepy Hollow series. (Died 1859.) (CE)
  • Born April 3, 1905 – Noel Loomis.  Two novels, three dozen shorter stories for us (five at Project Gutenberg); also detective fiction; Westerns (including film, television) and related nonfiction: two Spur Awards, President of Western Writers of America.  Also printing; he edited this.  (Died 1969) [JH]
  • Born April 3, 1927 Donald M. Grant. He was responsible for the creation of several genre small press publishers. He co-founded Grant-Hadley Enterprises in 1945, Buffalo Book Company in 1946, Centaur Press in 1970 and Donald M. Grant, Publisher, Inc. in 1964. Between 1976 and 2003, he won five World Fantasy Awards and a Balrog Award as well. (Died 2009.) (CE)
  • Born April 3, 1928 – Colin Kapp.  A dozen novels, three dozen shorter stories; perhaps best known for the Unorthodox Engineers: collection recently republished for Kindle.  CK was an engineer himself, though art doesn’t always work that way.  Guest of Honour at Eastercon 31.  (Died 2007) [JH]
  • Born April 3, 1929 Ernest Callenbach. Ecotopia: The Notebooks and Reports of William Weston was rejected by every major publisher so Callenbach initially self-published it. Ecotopia Emerging is a prequel and sequel as well was published later. Yes, I read both. As such fiction goes, they’re just ok.  If you can find a copy, Christopher Swan’s YV 88: An Eco-Fiction of Tomorrow which depicts the rewilded Yosemite Valley is a much more interesting read. (Died 2012.) (CE) 
  • Born April 3, 1936 Reginald Hill. Now this surprised me. He’s the author of the most excellent Dalziel and Pascoe copper series centered on profane, often piggish Andrew Dalziel, and his long suffering, more by the book partner Peter Pascoe solving traditional Yorkshire crimes. Well there’s a SF mystery in there set in 2010, many years after the other Dalziel and Pascoe stories, and involves them investigating the first Luna murder. I’ll need to read this one. There’s another with Peter Pascoe as a future European Pan Police Commissioner. (Died 2012.) (CE) 
  • Born April 3, 1946 Lyn McConchie, 75. New Zealand author who has written three sequels in the Beast Master series that Andre Norton created and four novels in Norton’s Witch World as well. She has written a lot of Holmesian fiction, so I’ll just recommend her collection of short stories, Sherlock Holmes: Familar Crimes: New Tales of The Great Detective. She’s deeply stocked at the usual digital suspects. (CE)
  • Born April 3, 1950 – Mark Linneman, age 61.  Helpful reliable fan often found where such are needed and even the non-monetary compensation we can grant is scant, e.g. tallying Worldcon Site Selection ballots, which ML has done four times I can think of.  Often seen at Midwestcons, SMOFcons (Secret Masters Of Fandom, as Bruce Pelz said a joke-nonjoke-joke; con for studying, trying to improve, SF cons and like that).  North America agent for Aussiecon 4 the 68th Worldcon.  Guest of Honor at Concave 33.  [JH]
  • Born April 3, 1950 – Tony Parker, age 71.  Co-chaired TropiCon VIII-IX (with wife Judy Bemis).  Guest of Honor at Concave 16 (with JB).  Thoughtful and even (sorry, Tony) wise. [JH]
  • Born April 3, 1958 – Vanna Bonta.  One novel, three collections of poetry.  Voice actress in Beauty and the Beast (1991).  She, her husband, and the zero-gravity suit she invented were in The Universe (2008); she designed a pressure-release device for high-combustion engines in NASA (U.S. Nat’l Aeronautics & Space Adm’n) and Northrop Grumman’s Lunar Lander Challenge.  Among twelve thousand haiku submitted to NASA for inclusion with the Mars explorer MAVEN (Mars Atmosphere & Volatile EvolutioN), hers made the top five: “Thirty-six million / miles of whispering welcome. / Mars, you called us home.”  You’ll see its alliteration; do attend to its ambiguity.  (Died 2014) [JH]
  • Born April 3, 1958 Alec Baldwin, 63. I’ve no idea how many times I’ve seen him in Beetlejuice as Adam Maitland since it’s one of my favorite films, period. Despite those who don’t like The Shadow and him in his dual role of Lamont  Cranston and The Shadow, I’m quite fond of it. Let’s just skip past any mention of The Cat in the Hat… Ahhhh Rise of the Guardians where he voices Nicholas St. North is quite fantastic. Another go to, feel good film for me. He’s Alan Hunley in some of the Mission: Impossible franchise, a series I think I’ve only seen the first two films of. And here’s a weird one — the US. run of Thomas The Tank Engine & Friends replaced the U.K. narrator, some minor musician no one had ever heard of by the name of Ringo Starr, with him. (CE)
  • Born April 3, 1962 James R. Black, 59. I’d like to say he’s best known for his leading role as Agent Michael Hailey on The Burning Zone but since it was short-lived and I’m not sure anyone actually watched it on UPN that might be stretching reality a bit. If you like great popcorn viewing, The Burning Zone is certainly worth seeing. Prior to his run on that series, he’s got a number of one-offs including Babylon 5Deep Space 9, The SentinelSpace: Above and Beyond with his first genre role being Doctor Death in Zombie Cop. (CE)
  • Born April 3, 1989 – Elaine Vilar Madruga, age 32.  Two novels, fifty shorter stories, some in English: last year “Elsinore Revolution”, see the Jan/Feb Magazine of Fantasy & Science Fiction; her poem “The Apocalypse According to My Name” in Spanish and English, see the Spring Star*Line; four more.  [JH]

(11) COMICS SECTION.

(12) THE SOUND OF MUSIC? Puppeteer and space aficionado Mary Robinette Kowal told Twitter followers, “I giggled all the way through this puppet music video ‘Everybody Poops In Space’ from @AdlerPlanet There’s a SINGING FECAL CONTAINMENT BAG”. Consider yourself warned.

(13) FROM THE BOTTOM TO THE TOP. Variety’s Matthew Chernov puts 33 films in order in “Godzilla: All the Movies Ranked Including ‘Godzilla vs. Kong’”.

He’s been dissolved at the bottom of the ocean, frozen solid in an iceberg, blown up in a volcano, disintegrated in an atomic meltdown, and killed by missiles on the Brooklyn Bridge, but thanks to the millions of fans who love him, Godzilla will never die. Japan’s biggest star returns again in “Godzilla vs. Kong,” the latest entry in the Big G’s ever-expanding filmography. Pitted against his hairy rival for the second time in history, “Godzilla vs. Kong” is the fourth movie in Legendary Pictures popular MonsterVerse saga, which launched in 2014 with Gareth Edwards’ stylish reboot.

Like many long-running franchises, the Godzilla series has gone through a number of distinct phrases since its introduction. The first phrase, which covers the 15 titles released between 1954 and 1975, is commonly known by fans as the Showa era. These kaiju films (kaiju is the Japanese term for giant monster) are marked by their dramatic shift in tone, from the somber and haunting original classic to the wonderfully ludicrous “Godzilla vs. Hedorah.”

The second phase is often referred to as the Heisei era, and it includes the seven titles released between 1984 and 1995. These Godzilla films feature a greater sense of narrative continuity, and they ask complex philosophical questions about science and humanity. The third phase is the Millennium era, which covers the six titles released between 1999 and 2004. The majority of these Godzilla films are self-contained stories, much like an anthology series. There have also been a number of standalone reboots, both Japanese and American, that put their own unique spin on the character.

To help you program the ultimate monster marathon, here’s our Godzilla movie ranking, listed from wretched worst to bestial best. Long live the lizard king!

(14) WAS THE GRINCH AN ASTRONAUT? [Item by rcade.] Spaceflight can cause the heart to shrink, according to a study in the journal Circulation led by Dr. Benjamin Levine of University of Texas Southwestern Medical Center. “Long spaceflights and endurance swimming can ‘shrink the heart’” at BBC News.

The study examined astronaut Scott Kelly, who spent 340 days about the International Space Station, and endurance swimmer Benoît Lecomte. Swimming for extended periods of time is a useful model for time spent in orbit. Lecomte trained over five hours a day for five months preparing to swim the Pacific Ocean.

Both Kelly and Lecomte showed signs of heart atrophy and lost mass in the organ — 19 to 27 percent loss in Kelly.

Levine said:

One of the things we’ve learned over many years of study, is that the heart is remarkably plastic. So the heart adapts to the load that’s placed on it. …

In spaceflight, one of the things that happens, is you no longer have to pump blood uphill, because you’re not pumping against gravity….

(15) WITCHER WRAP. Netflix dropped a behind-the-scenes trailer for season 2 of The Witcher.

15 locations, 89 cast members, and 1,200 crew members later, The Witcher has officially wrapped production on Season 2! Here’s a look behind-the-scenes at some of the excitement among the cast and crew – led by showrunner Lauren Schmidt Hissrich.

(16) WHAT’S BUGGING YOU? In the Washington Post, Alexandra Petri offers a “handy quiz” to determine whether you’re someone who is emerging from a year of pandemic lockdown or if you are a Brood X cicada!

Check all that apply:

  • You haven’t had any contact with friends or other members of your generation in what feels like 17 years….

(17) FAKE OLDS TO GO WITH FAKE NEWS. Gizmodo surveys research showing how “Scientists Implant and Then Reverse False Memories in People”.

Researchers have demonstrated just how easy it is to trick the mind into remembering something that didn’t happen. They also used two very simple techniques to reverse those false memories, in a feat that paves the way for a deeper understanding of how memory works….

“When people describe a memory, they will say that they are ‘absolutely certain’ of it. But this certainty can be an illusion. We suffer from the illusion of believing that our memories are accurate and pure,” Lisa Son, professor of Psychology at Barnard College of Columbia University, told Gizmodo. “This is despite the fact that we, in fact, forget all the time.”

Indeed, our minds are able to fabricate memories of entire events just by piecing together bits of stories, photographs, and anecdotes somebody else shares. These so-called false memories have been a hot topic of research for a while now, and there’s growing evidence that they could be a widespread phenomenon, according to a 2016 analysis of the field.

Building off of that, Oeberst’s lab recently implanted false memories in 52 people by using suggestive interviewing techniques. First, they had the participants’ parents privately answer a questionnaire and come up with some real childhood memories and two plausible, but fake, ones—all negative in nature, such as how their pet died or when they lost their toy. Then they had researchers ask the participants to recall these made-up events in a detailed manner, including specifics about what happened. For example, “Your parents told us that when you were 12 years old during a holiday in Italy with your family you got lost. Can you tell me more about it?”

The test subjects met their interviewer three times, once every two weeks, and by the third session most participants believed these anecdotes were true, and over half (56%) developed and recollected actual false memories—a significantly higher percentage than most studies in this area of research….

(18) REMEMBER THE DEAN DRIVE. “Latest EmDrive tests at Dresden University shows “impossible Engine” does not develop any thrust”.

… After tests in NASA laboratories had initially stirred up hope that the so-called EmDrive could represent a revolutionary, fuel-free alternative to space propulsion, the sobering final reports on the results of intensive tests and analyzes of three EmDrive variants by physicists at the Dresden University of Technology (TU Dresden) are now available. Grenzwissenschaft-Aktuell.de (GreWi) has exclusively interviewed the head of studies Prof. Dr. Martin Tajmar about the results….

(19) DOUBLE DUTCH LUNAR EXCURSION MODULE. [Item by Andrew Porter.] Live Science asks “How long would it take to walk around the moon?” Depends whether you go with the wind before or behind you, right?

…A total of 12 humans have stepped foot on the lunar surface, all of whom were part of the Apollo missions between 1969 and 1972, according to NASA. The footage that was beamed back to Earth showed how challenging (and, apparently, fun) it was to walk — or more accurately, bounce — around in the moon’s low gravity, which is one-sixth the gravity of Earth

However, research from NASA has since suggested that it is possible for humans to maneuver much faster on the moon than the Apollo astronauts did. Theoretically, walking the circumference of the moon could be done faster than previously predicted.

Picking up the pace 

During the Apollo missions, astronauts bounced around the surface at a casual 1.4 mph (2.2 km/h), according to NASA. This slow speed was mainly due to their clunky, pressurized spacesuits that were not designed with mobility in mind. If the “moonwalkers” had sported sleeker suits, they might have found it a lot easier to move and, as a result, picked up the pace.

(20) VIDEO OF THE DAY. In “Honest Game Trailers: Persona 5 Strikers” on YouTube, Fandom Games says that this game combines the happy joys of teenagers vacationing in Japan with the thrill of ‘spending 80 hours slaughtering one billion people,” a combination that’s like “peanut butter and methamphetamines.”

[Thanks to Alan Baumler, Cat Eldridge, Guy H. Lillian III, JJ, John Hertz, Lorien Gray, Rob Thornton, JeffWarner, Andrew Porter, rcade, Michael Toman, Mike Kennedy, James Davis Nicoll, Martin Morse Wooster, and John King Tarpinian for some of these stories. Title credit goes to File 770 contributing editor of the day Patrick Morris Miller.]

Pixel Scroll 4/2/21 Vorkosigan-Wagen, The Flying Car Of The Future

(1) BSFA AWARDS CEREMONY. The British Science Fiction Association will present the BSFA Awards in a live YouTube broadcast on Sunday, April 4 at 5 p.m. (9 a.m. Pacific). View here. (See the finalists on BSFA Awards 2020 Shortlist.)

(2) RETURN TO THOSE THRILLING DAYS OF YESTERYEAR. First Fandom Experience is taking entries for the 2021 Cosmos Prize through July 31 – “Illustration Contest! $500 in Prizes!”

The 2020 Cosmos Prize generated a fair amount of interest and some entertaining results, so we’re re-upping with a very different challenge… a challenge from beyond.

This year’s contest seeks illustrations for the twin collaborative stories, “The Challenge From Beyond,” published in the September 1935 issue of Fantasy Magazine. 

 The prominent early fanzine convinced two sets of professional authors to each develop a story based only on the title — one in the science fiction genre, the other as “weird fantasy.” For the science fiction variant, the contributors were Stanley G. Weinbaum, Donald Wandrei, Edward E. Smith, Ph.D., Harl Vincent and Murray Leinster. The fantasy alternative was penned by C.L. Moore, A. Merritt, H.P. Lovecraft, Robert E. Howard and Frank Belknap Long, Jr.

 Prizes

  1. One Grand Prize consisting of $300us in cash, as well as copies of FFE’s publications: The Visual History of Science Fiction Fandom, Volume One: The 1930s; The Earliest Bradbury; Roy V. Hunt: A Retrospective; and a full facsimile edition of Cosmos.
  2. One Second Prize consisting of $100us in cash, as well as copies of two FFE’s publication: The Visual History of Science Fiction Fandom: Volume One: The 1930s and a full facsimile edition of Cosmos .
  3. Two Third Prizes, each consisting of $50us in cash, as well as copies of two FFE publications: The Visual History of Science Fiction Fandom: Volume One: The 1930s and a full facsimile edition of Cosmos.

All prize winners will also receive an FFE lapel pin. Prize-winning submissions will be published on the FFE website and may also be included in future print and digital publications.

(3) RIVERDALE EPISODE RECAP (BEWARE SPOILERS). [Item by Martin Morse Wooster.] In Riverdale this year, Archie and the gang graduated high school.  The show then jumped eight years, and we found out that Veronica is a venture capitalist, Betty is an FBI agent, and Archie is a veteran who served in combat (but not in any war on our timeline, because the show is set in an alternate-universe 1980s with VHS tapes and no internet).  Jughead Jones went to the Iowa Writers’ Workshop and became a hip novelist complete with groovy goatee.  But for reasons I’ll skip, he’s back in Riverdale teaching high school.

Jones gets a phone call from his agent, who looks like Dick Vitale.  The agent has placed an excerpt from his new novel with Pop Culture Weekly.  “I’ve taken Stephen King’s spot,” the agent says, “but you’ve got to write more like King and less like Raymond Carver.”  But Jughead hasn’t written anything on his novel because he’s got writer’s block.  What to do?

We learn that Jughead’s first novel was written with the aid of the potent mushrooms grown on Riverdale’s renowned maple trees.  These mushrooms are so potent that Jughead wrote a 500-page manuscript while stonkered on shrooms.  So Jughead decides to take the mushrooms again, but enlists a friend to help him out.

The friend shows up and turns the mushrooms into a sauce, which Jughead uses to garnish “the first psychedelic hamburger.”  So the friend promises to show up and check in on Jughead, but just to make sure he writes, she handcuffs him to his writing chair.  So Jughead starts writing, loaded on mushrooms and…

…Well, stay tuned, because Riverdale is off the air until May!

(4) LASKOWSKI CONNECTION SOUGHT. Guy H. Lillian III needs help getting fanzine reprint permission:

In hopes of reprinting some part of his terrific Ted Sturgeon issue of Lan’s Lantern (1991), I am searching for George “Lan” Laskowski’s survivors and for the contributors to that issue (#36). Any assistance will be met with credits in the next edition of my genzine, Challenger, and my effusive gratitude. Also, any directions towards published articles or anecdotes about Ted will likewise be greatly appreciated — as will your own memories or impressions of Sturgeon and/or his work. Help!

Email Guy at GHLIII@yahoo.com. Or phone: (318) 218-2345. Or write a letter: 1390 Holly Avenue, Merritt Island FL 32952.

(5) WOOKIEEPEDIA WINDUP. Io9’s James Whitbrook gives a detailed look back at the recent controversy: “Star Wars Wiki Wookieepedia Centered in Trans Deadname Debate”.

…Reaction to Eleven-ThirtyEight’s tweet was immediate, at Wookieepedia and in wider Star Wars circles. Votes supporting the decision to change the policy, as well as discussion around the controversial nature of the vote in the first place, flooded the page. Even prominent figures from the world of official Star Wars works began commenting on the vote, including writers Daniel José Older (currently working on Lucasfilm’s The High Republic publishing initiative) and E.K. Johnston (the writer of multiple Star Wars novels, including Ahsoka and the Padmé Amidala trilogy).

…Throughout the backlash, Wookieepedia’s social presence remained as it usually did—tweeting about Star Wars media highlights and fandom jokes, even as fans in their mentions decried the voting process, and other fandom hubs began to formally decry the site’s position. TheForce.Net’s forums temporarily banned links to Wookieepedia content while the vote was ongoing, and even fellow fan sites like the Transformers franchise wiki TFWiki (not operated by Fandom, Inc.) released statements pushing back against the vote and Wookieepedia’s response to the situation.

But silence from Wookieepedia couldn’t stop the controversy reaching the site’s owner, Fandom. The company’s response was swift, a direct intervention that closed the vote and overruled Wookieepedia’s naming policy to protect discrimination against trans and non-binary people, citing a 2020 addition to the company’s own Terms of Use to ban transphobic content.

(6) FINDING THE PATH TO THE FUTURE. In the Washington Post, Michael Cavna asked four Asian-American cartoonists to recommend graphic novels that “speak well to anti-Asian and anti-AAPI racism.”  Works recommended include books by Thi Bui, Adrian Tomine, and George Takei with three collaborators. “Four graphic novels that illuminate anti-Asian racism through personal experience”.

Gene Luen Yang slept fitfully the night of March 16 — the day that six Asian women were among the eight people killed in the Atlanta spa shootings. The next morning, he saw that #AsiansAreHuman was trending — a hashtag that felt “disturbingly familiar.”

So Yang did what he has devoted much of his career to: writing and drawing art that promotes empathy and understanding.The Bay Area author created a short-form comic, he said this week, because he was “trying to make sense of what’s happening in America right now” amid a national spike in anti-Asian violence and hate crimes against Asian Americans and Pacific Islanders during the pandemic.

“We’re not jokes to make you laugh. We’re not props for the background of your selfie. We’re not punching bags for when you’re angry about a virus,” says Yang’s comic avatar.

Yang, a two-time National Book Award finalist, for “American Born Chinese” and “Boxers & Saints,” posted the comic to his Instagram and Facebook accounts on March 17, drawing thousands of likes and shares.

“People from all over, of all different backgrounds, reached out to me to express solidarity,” Yang says. “I felt understood and that there is a path leading to the future. It exists — we just have to find it.”….

(7) AUTHOR WITH VISION LOSS. [Item by rcade.] The Fantasy-Faction blog has an interview with indie SF/F author Scott Kaelen in which he discusses the challenges of writing with a visual impairment: “Scott Kaelen Interview – The Nameless and the Fallen”.

…The technical side is a problem on several levels. Thankfully, shortly after I was diagnosed with retinitis pigmentosa back in 2001, I took a touch-typing course (not knowing at the time how much I’d benefit from it years later as a writer). So, the writing part is maybe the least of the visual difficulties. What’s harder is when it comes time to do the full revision of a manuscript, painstakingly battling to focus on each word. …

 The creative difficulties are much more interesting. When describing what something looks like, I often have to put trust in my memory from when I had better eyesight. Nowadays, even people’s facial expressions are usually lost on me. Hell, I haven’t been able to see my own face well enough to recognize it for years. The hardest part isn’t describing what my point-of-view character is seeing, it’s knowing whether they “should” be able to see it, be it in the darkness, bright light, the corner of their eye, at varying distances, and so on. I’m completely night-blind, and I have tunnel vision, daylight sensitivity, colour blindness, blurry central vision, and distortions. That doesn’t make it easy to write a “normal-sighted” character.

Kaelen’s first novel, The Blighted City, was a semifinalist in the Self-Published Fantasy Blog Off (SPFBO). He wrote a personal essay on the Before We Go blog about being discharged from the military when he was diagnosed, going through a “dark decade” and having a surgery 10 years ago that made things much worse:

… I allowed German eye doctors to slice my eyeballs open, take out my lenses and replace them with plastic ones. …

I had comparatively been coping with the night blindness and tunnel vision, but my central vision quickly deteriorated and my depth perception was affected. A room now looked like a faded painting. The smaller details had gone and I could no longer recognise people as easily. I seethed over what the doctors had done to me, how they hadn’t taken into account and told me about the higher chance of complications from such operations for people with my condition. And so, there I was: living in a foreign land, able to converse on a basic level but ultimately unemployable, with extreme difficulties on public transport and in crowded areas, miserable and directionless. I asked myself what I could do to put some purpose into my life. The answer came quickly and stunned me with its apparent simplicity.
I would become a writer…

(8) MEDIA BIRTHDAY.

  • April 2, 2005 — On this day in 2005, The Quatermass Experiment premiered.  It was a live television event remake of the 1953 television series of the same name by Nigel Kneale. It was written by Richard Fell and directed by Sam Miller. It starred Jason Flemyng was cast as Quatermass, with long-time Kneale admirer Mark Gatiss as Paterson, Andrew Tiernan as Carroon, Indira Varma as his wife Judith, David Tennant as Briscoe, Adrian Bower as Fullalove and Adrian Dunbar as Lomax.  The critics really liked it and it became BBC Four’s fourth-highest-rated program of all time. It’s not that popular at Rotten Tomatoes where the audience reviewers give it only a 47% rating.

(9) TODAY’S BIRTHDAYS.

[Compiled by Cat Eldridge and John Hertz.]

  • Born April 2, 1805 – Hans Christian Andersen. Novels, plays, poems, travelogues. He gave us a hundred fifty fairy tales, e.g. “The Emperor’s New Clothes”, “The Princess and the Pea”, “The Steadfast Tin Soldier”, “Thumbelina”, “The Ugly Duckling”; fantasy for sure, but some amount to science fiction: “The Wicked Prince” (1840) has a ship that can sail through the air, guns that fire a thousand bullets.  (Died 1875) [JH]
  • Born April 2, 1847 – Flora Annie Steel.  Author-collector, lived a score of years in British India.  One novel, fifty shorter stories for us; Tales of the Punjab illustrated by John Lockwood Kipling, father of Rudyard; English Fairy Tales; ten other novels, half a dozen other books of shorter stories, a cookbook, history, memoirs, The Woman Question.  (Died 1929) [JH]
  • Born April 2, 1914 Alec Guinness. Obi-Wan Kenobi in the Star Wars trilogy. (What? There were more movies after them? No!)  That’s it for filmed genre roles but theatre is another matter altogether. He played Osric first in Hamlet in the early Thirties in what was then the New Theatre, Old Thorney in The Witch of Edmonton at The Old Vic and the title role of Macbeth at Sheffield. (Died 2000.) (CE)
  • Born April 2, 1921 – Redd Boggs.  Minneapolis and Los Angeles fan; big name in the 1940s and 1950s.  Fanzines Discord (and Discard), Sky HookSpirochete.  N3F (Nat’l Fantasy Fan Fed’n) Laureate Award as Best Fanwriter.  See a 1983 letter from him in Izzard here.  More here.  (Died 1996) [JH]
  • Born April 2, 1933 Murray Tinkelman. Illustrator who provided numerous book covers for paperback of genre novels for Ballantine Books in the Seventies. He’s particularly known for his work on the paperback editions of Brunner novels such as The Shockwave Rider which you can see here and Stand on Zanzibar that you can see over here. (Died 2016.) (CE) 
  • Born April 2, 1939 Elliot K. Shorter. He began attending cons in the early Sixties and was a major figure in fandom through the Seventies. Some of the zines he worked on were Engram, the Heicon Flyer and Niekas. He was the TAFF winner at Heicon, the 28th Worldcon, in Heidelberg Germany. And he helped Suncon, the 1977 Worldcon. Mike has a detailed obituary here. (Died 2013.) (CE)
  • Born April 2, 1945 Linda Hunt, 76. Her first film role was Mrs. Holly Oxheart In Popeye. (Anyone here who’s disputing that’s genre?) She goes on to be Shadout Mapes in Lynch’s Dune. (Very weird film.) Next up is Dragonfly, a Kevin Costner fronted horror film as Sister Madeline. And in a quirky role, she voices Lady Proxima, the fearsome Grindalid matriarch of the White Worms, in Solo: A Star Wars Story. (CE) 
  • Born April 2, 1948 Joan D. Vinge, 73. Best known I think for The Snow Queen which won a well-deserved Hugo at Denvention Two and its sequels, her most excellent series about the young telepath named Cat, and her Heaven’s Chronicles, the latter which I’ve not read. Her first new book in almost a decade after her serious car accident was the 2011 novelization of Cowboys & Aliens. And I find it really neat that she wrote the anime and manga reviews for The Year’s Best Fantasy & Horror anthologies. (CE)
  • Born April 2, 1948 – Teny Zuber, age 73.  Widow of Bernie Zuber (fanartist and original vice-president of the Mythopoeic Society, d. 2005).  Active in and near L.A. in 1970s and 1980s (and BZ much earlier); they promoted the 1978 Ralph Bakshi Lord of the Rings film.  [JH]
  • Born April 2, 1953 – Anne Mazer, age 68.  Eight novels, a dozen shorter stories for us; twoscore books all told.  One Booklist Editor’s Choice, one American Lib’y Ass’n Notable book.  Likes Hugh Lofting’s Twilight of Magic, the only HL book illustrated by another (Lois Lenski).  [JH]
  • Born April 2, 1978 Scott Lynch, 41. His only Award to date is a BFA for Best Newcomer. Author of Gentleman Bastard series of novels which is now at three, and he’s stated that it’ll eventually be seven books in length. And I see he was writing Queen of the Iron Sands, an online serial novel for awhile. May I note he’s married to Elizabeth Bear, one of my favorite authors? (CE)
  • Born April 2, 1984 – David Dalglish, age 37.  Two dozen books, a dozen shorter stories.  Has read Sense and SensibilityFahrenheit 451The Great GatsbyFrankensteinFoundation.  Recommends King’s On Writing.  [JH]

(10) ROCKS AROUND THE CLOCK. James Davis Nicoll leads Tor.com readers “In Search of the Classic Hollywood-Style Asteroid Belt”.

If you’re anything like me, you might have enhanced your friends’ enjoyment of space adventure films by pointing out at great length and in fascinating detail just why the crowded asteroid belts backgrounds that appear in so many of these films are implausible and inaccurate! Our solar system asteroids are far from crowded. If you were to find yourself on the surface of a typical asteroid, you probably wouldn’t be able to see your closest rocky neighbour with a naked eye.

Are there situations in which these visuals wouldn’t be misleading? Can we imagine places where we could expect what appears to be an impending Kessler Syndrome on a solar scale?

(11) GOING APE. Camestros Felapton verifies that Greater Sydney is still there and comes home with a movie review: “I Went to an Actual Cinema and Watched Godzilla v King Kong”. It doesn’t seem to me there are any spoilers here, just the same, BEWARE SPOILERS, because how do I know what it takes to spoil your fun?

…It was a big cinema theatre and not very busy. I was the only person I noticed wearing a mask but I had about eight rows to myself. I figured that if I was going to watch a very big ape hit a very big lizard, I should do so in front of a very big screen and as close as possible. This was a wise choice.

Of all the US versions of Godzilla I’ve seen, this one was the most in tune with the Japanese Toho movies. I’ve seen many of the Japanese Godzilla films but only a fraction of the total and often I was drunk or half asleep (because it was late, not because the film was boring), so I won’t claim to be a Godzilla expert. The key for a true Godzilla movie is the plot shouldn’t matter but it should be crammed with weird ideas that flow easily across sci-fi and fantasy tropes. Godzilla v Kong delivers that in sufficient quantity…

(12) TANNED, RESTED, AND READY. “Arnold Schwarzenegger Suited To Deal With Alien Invasion, Per UK Poll” reports Deadline.

Have you ever wondered which public figure would be most fit to lead the world, in the event of an alien invasion? Today, a U.K. poll of 2000 British adults found that the answer is Arnold Schwarzenegger….

On the list of 20 celebrities “who would best deal with an alien invasion,” Independence Day star Will Smith came in second. Interestingly, former President Donald Trump appeared on the list in eighth place, besting current President Joe Biden (in last place) and Vice President Kamala Harris (in 19th). Other celebs that made the list include Sir David Attenborough, Bruce Willis, Tom Cruise, Harrison Ford, Sigourney Weaver, Gillian Anderson, and others…. 

(13) YOU HAVEN’T COMPLETELY MISSED IT. [Item by Danny Sichel.] SIGBOVIK 2021 was held yesterday and is rewatchable on YouTube.

In science, there are serious questions and silly questions, and serious methods and silly methods. Normal scientific conferences explore serious questions via serious methods. This leaves three whole quadrants of research unexamined. SIGBOVIK, organized by Carnegie Mellon University’s Association for Computational Heresy, fills this much-needed gap.

SIGBOVIK 2021 is the fifteenth edition of this esteemed conference series, which was formed in 2007 to celebrate the inestimable and variegated work of Harry Quarter-dollar Bovik. We especially welcome the three neglected quadrants of research: joke realizations of joke ideas, joke realizations of serious ideas, and serious realizations of joke ideas. (In other words: SIGBOVIK is an evening of tongue-in-cheek academic presentations, a venue for silly ideas and/or executions.)

The proceedings of the past several years of SIGBOVIK are available as free PDFs.

(14) THE NEW NUMBER 2. Jon Del Arroz doesn’t rank anywhere on the poll of public figures who’ll be called on to lead the world in case of alien invasion, so he was understandably pleased with the consolation prize.

(15) NEVER MIND. A NASA press release called “NASA Analysis: Earth Is Safe From Asteroid Apophis for 100-Plus Years” says that NASA, who previously warned that asteroid Apophis could crash into the Earth in 2029, has done recalculations and now says the Earth is safe both in 2029 and in 2068 from an Apophis impact.

Estimated to be about 1,100 feet (340 meters) across, Apophis quickly gained notoriety as an asteroid that could pose a serious threat to Earth when astronomers predicted that it would come uncomfortably close in 2029. Thanks to additional observations of the near-Earth object (NEO), the risk of an impact in 2029 was later ruled out, as was the potential impact risk posed by another close approach in 2036. Until this month, however, a small chance of impact in 2068 still remained.

When Apophis made a distant flyby of Earth around March 5, astronomers took the opportunity to use powerful radar observations to refine the estimate of its orbit around the Sun with extreme precision, enabling them to confidently rule out any impact risk in 2068 and long after.

(16) VIDEO OF THE DAY. Watch the pilot episode of Interforce: Seoul, an animated superhero sci-fi actioner with English subtitles

[Thanks to John King Tarpinian, Michael Toman, rcade, JJ, Andrew Porter, Martin Morse Wooster, Mike Kennedy, Cat Eldridge, James Davis Nicoll, Danny Sichel, and John Hertz for some of these stories. Title credit belongs to File 770 contributing editor of the day Daniel Dern.]

2020 BSFA Awards Shortlist

The British Science Fiction Association has released the BSFA Awards 2020 shortlist.

The BSFA Awards have been presented annually since 1970. The awards are voted on by members of the British Science Fiction Association and by the members of the year’s Eastercon, the national science fiction convention, held since 1955. The winners will be announced at this year’s Eastercon, ConFusion, which will be held online 2-5th April 2021,

Best Artwork

  • Iain Clarke, Shipbuilding Over the Clyde, Art for Glasgow in 2024 WorldCon bid.
  • Fangorn, Covers of Robot Dreams series.
  • Ruby Gloom, Cover of Nikhil Singh’s Club Ded, Luna Press Publishing.
  • Sinjin Li, Cover of Eli Lee’s, A Strange and Brilliant Light, Jo Fletcher Books.
  • Nani Walker, Four Black Lives Matter Murals in AR. Using drone photogrammetry, Nani Sahra Walker produced 3-D models of four Black Lives Matter murals as memorials to George Floyd, Breonna Taylor and others killed by police. Published by the Los Angeles Times in collaboration with RYOT and reported by Dorany Pineda.

Note: Images of the artwork are online here.

Best Short Fiction (under 40,000 words)

  • Eugen M. Bacon, Ivory’s Story, Newcon Press.
  • Anne Charnock, ‘All I Asked For’, Fictions, Healthcare and Care Re-Imagined. Edited by Keith Brookes, at Future Care Capital.
  • Dilman Dila, ‘Red_Bati’, Dominion: An Anthology of Speculative Fiction From Africa and the African Diaspora, AURELIA LEO. Edited by Zelda Knight and Oghenechovwe Donald Ekpeki.
  • Oghenechovwe Donald Ekpeki, ‘Ife-Iyoku, the Tale of Imadeyunuagbon’, Dominion: An Anthology of Speculative Fiction From Africa and the African Diaspora, AURELIA LEO. Edited by Zelda Knight and Oghenechovwe Donald Ekpeki.
  • Ida Keogh, ‘Infinite Tea in the Demara Cafe’, Londoncentric, Newcon Press. Edited by Ian Whates.
  • Tobi Ogundiran, ‘Isn’t Your Daughter Such a Doll’, Shoreline of Infinity.

Best Non-Fiction

  • Francesca T Barbini (ed.), Ties That Bind: Love in Science Fiction and Fantasy, Luna Press.
  • Paul Kincaid, The Unstable Realities of Christopher Priest, Gylphi Press.
  • Andrew Milner and J.R. Burgmann, Science Fiction and Climate Change, Liverpool University Press.’
  • Adam Roberts, It’s the End of the World: But What Are We Really Afraid Of?, Elliot & Thompson.
  • Jo Lindsay Walton, ‘Estranged Entrepreneurs’, Foundation: the International Review of Science Fiction.
  • Jo Walton, ‘Books in Which No Bad Things Happen’, Tor.com.

Note: The two non-fiction nominees with similar names, Jo Walton and Jo Lindsay Walton, are two different people.

Best Novel

  • Tiffani Angus, Threading the Labyrinth, Unsung Stories.
  • Susanna Clarke, Piranesi, Bloomsbury.
  • M. John Harrison, The Sunken Land Begins to Rise Again, Gollancz.
  • N.K. Jemisin, The City We Became, Orbit.
  • Gareth L. Powell, Light of Impossible Stars, Titan Books.
  • Kim Stanley Robinson, The Ministry for the Future, Orbit.
  • Nikhil Singh, Club Ded, Luna Press.
  • Adrian Tchaikovsky, The Doors of Eden, Tor.
  • Liz Williams, Comet Weather, Newcon Press.
  • Nick Wood, Water Must Fall, Newcon Press.

There was a multiple tie for fifth place this year. The committee decided that instead of abbreviating the shortlist, all nominees would be included.

Second Round of 2020 BSFA Awards Nominations Begins

British Science Fiction Association members will have from January 18 until February 5 to help choose the BSFA Awards shortlists for works published in 2020. The voting form is available to BSFA members here.

In the first round, members nominated a longlist of 46 novels, 43 works of short fiction, 19 items of nonfiction, and 27 artworks.

Once voters have determined the shortlist, BSFA members and members of the British national science fiction convention Eastercon will vote for the winners.

The full longlists are as follows:

BEST NOVEL

  • 88 Names by Matt Ruff (HarperCollins)
  • Afterland by Lauren Beukes (Mulholland Books)
  • Analogue/Virtual by Lavanya Lakshminarayan (Hachette)
  • Attack Surface by Cory Doctorow (Tor)
  • Axiom’s End by Lindsay Ellis (St Martin’s Press)
  • Beneath The Rising by Premee Mohamed (Solaris)
  • Bridge 108 by Anne Charnock (47North)
  • Burn by Patrick Ness (Quill Tree)
  • Chosen Spirits by Samit Basu (Simon & Schuster)
  • Club Ded by Nikhil Singh (Luna Press)
  • Comet Weather by Liz Williams (NewCon)
  • Dark Angels Rising by Ian Whates (Newcon Press)
  • Earthlings by Sayaka Murata (Granta)
  • Fearless by Allen Stroud (Flame Tree Publishing)
  • Ghost Species by James Bradley (Hodder & Stoughton)
  • Greensmith by Aliya Whiteley (Unsung Stories)
  • Harrow the Ninth by Tamsyn Muir (Tor.com)
  • Ivory’s Story by Eugen Bacon (NewCon Press)
  • King of the Rising by Kacen Callender (Orbit)
  • Light of Impossible Stars by Gareth L. Powell (Titan)
  • Liquid Crystal Nightingale by Eeleen Lee (Abaddon)
  • Little Eyes by Samanta Schweblin (Oneworld)
  • Master of Poisons by Andrea Hairston (Tor.com)
  • Mordew by Alex Pheby (Galley Beggar)
  • Network Effect by Martha Wells (Tor.com)
  • Nophek Gloss by Essa Hansen (Orbit)
  • Noumenon Ultra by Marina J. Lostetter (Harper Voyager)
  • People of the Canyons by Kathleen O’Neal Gear and W. Michael Gear (Forge Books)
  • Picard: Last Best Hope by Una McCormack (Simon & Schuster)
  • Piranesi by Susanna Clarke (Bloomsbury)
  • Saints of Salvation by Peter F Hamilton (Del Rey)
  • Saving Lucia by Anna Vaught (Bluemoose)
  • Space Station Down by Ben Bova & Doug Beason (Tor Books)
  • Vagabonds by Hao Jingfang (Head of Zeus)
  • The Book of Koli by M.R. Carey (Orbit)
  • The Breach by M.T. Hill (Titan)
  • The City We Became by N. K. Jemisin (Orbit)
  • The Doors of Eden by Adrian Tchaikovsky (Tor)
  • The Empire of Gold by S.A. Chakraborty (Harper Voyager)
  • The Evidence by Christopher Priest (Gollancz)
  • The God Game by Danny Tobey (St. Martin’s Press)
  • The Last Human by Zack Jordan (Del Rey)
  • The Ministry for the Future by Kim Stanley Robinson (Orbit)
  • The New Wilderness by Diane Cook (Oneworld)
  • The Once and Future Witches by Alix E. Harrow (Hachette)
  • The Only Good Indians by Stephen Graham Jones (Saga)
  • The Relentless Moon by Mary Robinette Kowal (Tor)
  • The Silence by Don DeLillo (Picador)
  • The Sunken Land Begins to Rise Again by M. John Harrison (Gollancz)
  • The Vanished Birds by Simon Jimenez (Titan)
  • Threading the Labyrinth by Tiffani Angus (Unsung Stories)
  • To Sleep in a Sea of Stars by Christopher Paolini (Tor)
  • Unconquerable Sun by Kate Elliott (Tor)
  • Utopia Avenue by David Mitchell (Sceptre)
  • War of the Maps by Paul McAuley (Gollancz)
  • Water Must Fall by Nick Wood (NewCon Press)

SHORT FICTION

  • A Voyage to Queensthroat by Anya Johanna DeNiro (Strange Horizons)
  • All I Asked For by Anne Charnock (Future Care Capital)
  • All Your Bases, Yada-Yada by Paula Hammond (Third_Flatiron)
  • Always Forever Today, Andrew Hook (Frequencies of Existence)
  • Burn or the Episodic Life of Sam Wells as a Super, by A.T. Greenblatt (Uncanny Magazine)
  • Carnival by Milton Davis (Hadithi and the State of Black Speculative Fiction)
  • Cofiwch Aberystwyth by Val Nolan (Interzone, TTA Press)
  • Convergence in Chorus Architecture by Dare Segun Falowo (Dominion: An Anthology of Speculative Fiction From Africa and the African Diaspora)
  • Devil’s Road by Gary Gibson (NewCon)
  • Fairy Tales for Robots by Sofia Samatar (Made to Order)
  • Firewalkers by Adrian Tchaikovsky (Solaris)
  • Flight by Claire Wrenwood (Tor.com)
  • Fog and Pearls at the King’s Cross Junction by Aliya Whiteley (LondonCentric)
  • Georgie in the Sun by Natalia Theodoridou (Uncanny Magazine)
  • Give Me My Wings by Eneasz Brodski (Gotta Wear Eclipse Glasses)
  • Grubane by Karl Drinkwater (Organic Apocalypse)
  • Honeybones by Georgina Bruce (TTA Press)
  • Ife-Iyoku, Tale of Imadeyunuagbon by Oghenechovwe Ekpeki (Dominion: An Anthology of Speculative Fiction From Africa and the African Diaspora)
  • In the Storm, a Fire by Andrew Dana Hudson and Jay Springett (And Lately, The Sun)
  • Infinite Tea in the Demara Cafe by Ida Keogh (LondonCentric)
  • Isn’t Your Daughter Such a Doll by Tobi Ogundiran (Shoreline of Infinity)
  • Ivory’s Story by Eugen M. Bacon (NewCon)
  • Make America Great Again by Val Nolan (Interzone, TTA Press)
  • Mist Songs of Delhi by Sid Jain (PodCastle)
  • Odette by Zen Cho (Shoreline of Infinity)
  • Paper Hearts by Justina Robson (NewCon)
  • Placed into Abyss (Mise en Abyse) by Rachel Swirsky (Tor.com)
  • Rat and Finch are Friends, by Innocent Chizaram Ilo (Strange Horizons)
  • Red_Bati by Dilman Dila (Dominion: An Anthology of Speculative Fiction From Africa and the African Diaspora)
  • Rocket Man by Louis Evans (Interzone, TTA Press)
  • Saving Simon by Allen Stroud (Forgotten Sidekicks, Kristell Ink)
  • Selkie Summer by Ken McLeod (NewCon)
  • Seven Days in Geocenter by Yu Yu (no publisher information)
  • Seven Dreams of a Valley by Prashanth Srivatsa (Beneath Ceaseless Skies)
  • Sin Eater by Ian R. MacLeod (Made to Order)
  • Singularity by Davide Mana (Shoreline of Infinity)
  • Soaring, the World on their Shoulders by Cécile Cristofari (Interzone, TTA Press)
  • SoulShine by Koji A. Dae (Gotta Wear Eclipse Glasses)
  • The Abduction of Europe, Andrew Hook, in Frequencies of Existence (NewCon)
  • The Continuity by Philip Berry (And Lately, The Sun)
  • The Good Shepherd by Stewart Hotson (LondonCentric)
  • The Menace from Farside by Ian McDonald (Tor.com)
  • The Road to Woop Woop by Eugen Bacon (The Road to Woop Woop and Other Stories)
  • The Roman Road by Vajra Chandrasekera (Fireside)
  • The Thirteenth Floor by Robert Bagnall (Gotta Wear Eclipse Glasses)
  • The Torch by Samantha Walton (Gutter Magazine)
  • The Translator, at Low Tide by Vajra Chandrasekera (Clarkesworld Magazine)
  • The Unclean by Nuzo Onoh (Dominion: An Anthology of Black Speculative Fiction)
  • Time’s Own Gravity by Alexander Glass (Interzone, TTA Press)
  • To Set at Twilight in a Land of Reeds by Natalia Theodoridou (Clarkesworld Magazine)
  • Warsuit by Gary Gibson (Interzone, TTA Press)
  • We are Still Here by Anya Ow (Shoreline of Infinity)
  • We Will Become as Monsters by Benjanun Sriduangkaew (Future Fire)
  • Yellow and the Perception of Reality by Maureen McHugh (Tor.com)
  • You Brought Me the Ocean by Alex Sanchez and Julie Maroh (DC Comics)
  • You Will Never Be Forgotten by Mary South (Fsg Originals)

BEST ARTWORK

  • Art for Glasgow in 2024 WorldCon bid by Iain Clarke (Shipbuilding Over the Clyde)
  • Cityscape by Myriam Wares
  • Cover of Aliya Whiteley’s Greensmith
  • Cover of Dark River by Rym Kechacha
  • Cover of Eli Li’s A Strange and Brilliant Light by Sinjin Li
  • Cover of Hag: Forgotten Tales Retold
  • Cover of Hao Jingfang’s Vagabonds
  • Cover of Ian Whates’s Dark Angels Rising by Jim Burns
  • Cover of Judge Dredd Megazine #426 by Tim Napper
  • Cover of Juliana Rew’s (ed.) Gotta Wear Eclipse Glasses by Keely Rew
  • Cover of M. John Harrison’s The Sunken Land Begins to Rise Again by Micaela Alcaino
  • Cover of Mary South’s You Will Never Be Forgotten by Jamie Keenan
  • Cover of Nature 22 October 2020 by Paul Klee (‘Vaccine Design’)
  • Cover of Neal Asher’s Lockdown Tales by Vincent Sammy
  • Cover of Nick Wood’s Water Must Fall by Vincent Sammy
  • Cover of Nikhil Singh’s Club Ded by Ruby Gloom
  • Cover of Patrick Ness’s Burn by Alejandro Colucci
  • Cover of Robot Dreams series by Fangorn (NewCon)
  • Cover of Sayaka Murata’s Earthlings
  • Cover of Shoreline of Infinity 17 by Siobhan McDonald
  • Cover of Shoreline of Infinity 18 by Jackie Duckworth
  • Cover of Shoreline of Infinity 19 by Stephen Daly
  • Cover of Storm Constantine and Wendy Darling’s (eds) Para Mort by Ruby
  • Cover of The Breach by M.T. Hill
  • Four Black Lives Matter murals from LA rendered in VR/AR by multiple artists
  • Illustration for Val Nolan’s ‘Make America Great Again’ by Richard Wagner
  • Ponte La Mascara! by Noe Leyva (interior art for Cortex Prime RPG rulebook)
  • Samraaji Skyhavens by Steven Sanders (interior art for Terra Oblivion RPG rulebook, p. 42)
  • Shing Yin Khor’s series of famous artworks re-created in Animal Crossing.

BEST NON-FICTION

  • At the Brink: Electronic Literature, Technology, and the Peripheral Imagination at the Atlantic Edge by Anne Karhio (Electronic Book Review)
  • Beachcombing: And other oddments by David Langford (Ansible Editions)
  • Big Echo Interviews ed. Robert G Penner (Big Echo)
  • ‘Books in Which No Bad Things Happen’ by Jo Walton (Tor.com)
  • Diseases of the Head: Essays on the Horrors of Speculative Philosophy ed. Matt Rosen (Punctum)
  • ‘Estranged Entrepreneurs’ by Jo Lindsay Walton (Foundation)
  • ‘How Science Fiction Imagined the 2020s’ by Tim Maughan (OneZero)
  • ‘How the Federation Overcame its Shipbuilding Gap for the defense of Coppelius in Star Trek: Picard‘ by Claude Berube (NavyCon)
  • It’s the End of the World: But what are we afraid of? by Adam Roberts (Elliott & Thompson)
  • ‘Review of M. John Harrison’s Settling the World‘ by Martin Petto (Strange Horizons)
  • Science Fiction and Climate Change by Andrew Milner and JR Burgmann (Liverpool University Press)
  • ‘The 2020 Arthur C. Clarke Award Shortlist’ by Nandini Ramachandran (Strange Horizons)
  • The Jonbar Point: Essays from SF Horizons by Brian Aldiss, with an introduction by Christopher Priest (Ansible Editions)
  • The Unstable Realities of Christopher Priest by Paul Kincaid (Gylphi)
  • Ties That Bind: Love in Fantasy and Science Fiction ed. Francesca T. Barbini (Luna Press)
  • ‘Zones of Possibility: Science Fiction and the Coronavirus’ by Rob Latham (Los Angeles Review of Books)

2019 BSFA Awards

The British Science Fiction Association presented the 2019 BSFA Awards in a video ceremony on YouTube today.

The results ordinarily would have been announced at the 2020 Eastercon, Concentric, in April, but the convention was cancelled due to the coronavirus outbreak.

The winners are:

Best Novel

  • Adrian Tchaikovsky – Children of Ruin (Tor)

Best Shorter Fiction

  • Amal El-Mohtar & Max Gladstone – This is How You Lose the Time War (Jo Fletcher Books)

Best Non-Fiction

  • Farah Mendlesohn – The Pleasant Profession of Robert A. Heinlein (Unbound)

Best Artwork

  • Chris Baker (Fangorn) – Cover for ‘Wourism and Other Stories’ by Ian Whates (Luna Press)