There are two other non-Hugo awards included on the Hugo Ballot. They are nominated and voted on by the same people, they are awarded at the Hugo Ceremony, but the recipients don’t take home a shiny rocket trophy.
Appearing for the first time this year is the Award for Best Young Adult Book:
A book published for young adult readers in the field of science fiction or fantasy appearing for the first time during 2017.
Attempts to create a Young Adult Hugo were unsuccessful for many years because it really wasn’t compatible with the other word-count based fiction categories. Finally, they decided to create a seperate award administered with the Hugos, but not a Hugo itself. Therefore, becoming a finalist for this award does not prevent a work from being eligible for the Hugo category its word-count would qualify it for.
The name Lodestar is up for ratification at this year’s Business Meeting. If approved, it would go into effect for 2019. However, a proposal to name it after Ursula K. Le Guin instead is also going to be brought up at that time. Online reaction doesn’t look good for this. But if those in attendance at the Business Meeting do decide to change the name to this or something else altogether, it would undoubtedly cause the award to remain nameless for another year until the new one is ratified.
While I can appreciate the desire to honor Le Guin, I think an award for women writers and/or feminist writing would be more applicable to her legacy. Also, I feel it is disrespectful to everyone involved in the long and careful process that went into selecting the Lodestar name to suggest a change at this late date. At the same time, this seems like a rush to name something after her now that she’s no longer with us.
I had several things lined up to read for this category, but just didn’t get to them in time to nominate anything. I look forward to seeing what does make the finalist list.
The other non-Hugo category is the John W. Campbell Award for Best New Writer:
A writer whose first work of science fiction or fantasy appeared in a professional publication during 2016 or 2017.
This award is sponsored by Dell Magazines, publisher of Analog, and named in memory of the magazine’s long-time, influential editor. Originally presented in 1973, one of the finalists who lost to Jerry Pournelle that first year was a young George R. R. Martin.
Again I didn’t get to everything I had planned to look at for this, but I was able to find new writers to nominate from works I’d already read. There is a page at the Writertopia.org site which maintains a list of eligible writers. And Rocket Stack Rank also makes note of eligible short fiction writers. Here are the authors I nominated with at least one of the works which I read by them:
- G. V. Anderson, “I Am Not I”, Fantasy & Science Fiction, Jul/Aug 2017
- Katherine Arden, The Bear and the Nightingale (Del Rey)
- J. R. Dawson, “Marley and Marley”, Fantasy & Science Fiction, Nov/Dec 2017
- Allison Mills, “If a Bird Can Be a Ghost”, Apex Magazine, Issue 99
- Vina Jie-Min Prasad, “Fandom for Robots”, Uncanny Magazine, Issue 18
Today’s the day we find out who this year’s finalists are! Live announcements are taking place at 3 pm EDT (UTC−04:00), and a video announcement will be posted at Worldcon76.org approximately one hour later.