2020 Hugos: People Categories

CoNZealand, the 78th World Science Fiction Convention, has announced the finalists for the 2020 Hugo Awards, the Lodestar Award for Best Young Adult Book, and the Astounding Award for Best New Writer.  You can watch a video of the announcement on CoNZealand’s YouTube channel or view the complete list on the Hugo Awards website.  JJ at File 770 has put together a post on Where To Find The 2020 Hugo Award Finalists For Free Online.

This is the third of four posts with my initial thoughts.  I’m dividing the nineteen award categories into written fiction works (novel, novella, novelette, short story, young adult book), other individual works (related work, graphic story, long form dramatic presentation, short form dramatic presentation), people categories (short form editor, long form editor, professional artist, fan writer, fan artist, new writer), and serial categories (series, semiprozine, fanzine, fancast).

Best Editor, Short Form

  • Neil Clarke
  • Ellen Datlow
  • C.C. Finlay
  • Jonathan Strahan
  • Lynne M. Thomas and Michael Damian Thomas
  • Sheila Williams

The first three were my own nominees.  I nominated Uncanny in Best Semiprozine rather than nominating the Thomases in this category.  I’m particularly pleased for C.C. Finlay’s first-time appearance here.  I became a regular reader of The Magazine of Fantasy & Science Fiction around the time that he took over as editor in 2015, and I’ve been subscribing ever since.

Best Editor, Long Form

  • Sheila E. Gilbert
  • Brit Hvide
  • Diana M. Pho
  • Devi Pillai
  • Miriam Weinberg
  • Navah Wolfe

Devi Pillai was my nominee in this category, but I’m glad to see Brit Hvide make her first appearance here.  (I actually nominated her for the Astounding Award this year.)  She is now the editor for many of the authors who previously worked with Devi Pillai after Pillai moved from Orbit to Tor.

Best Professional Artist

  • Tommy Arnold
  • Rovina Cai
  • Galen Dara
  • John Picacio
  • Yuko Shimizu
  • Alyssa Winans

I nominated Alyssa Winans, but I’m also happy for the other two newcomers.  Tommy Arnold has been right on the cusp of making the final ballot a couple times in the past few years.  Rovina Cai was on the longlist last year too.

Best Fan Writer

  • Cora Buhlert
  • James Davis Nicoll
  • Alasdair Stuart
  • Bogi Takács
  • Paul Weimer
  • Adam Whitehead

We also have three new names in this category.  I’m especially thrilled for my own nominee Adam Whitehead.  His blog was one of the first I started following way back when blogs were the cool, new thing.  Although this is both of their first appearances here, Cora Buhlert and Paul Weimer are familiar names I’m pleased to see as well.

Best Fan Artist

  • Iain Clark
  • Sara Felix
  • Grace P. Fong
  • Meg Frank
  • Ariela Housman
  • Elise Matthesen

My nominees were newcomer Iain Clark and returning finalist Ariela Housman.  Jewelry artist Elise Matthesen is the other first-time finalist here while the remaining three are also previous finalists.

Astounding Award for Best New Writer

  • Sam Hawke (2nd year of eligibility)
  • R.F. Kuang (2nd year of eligibility)
  • Jenn Lyons (1st year of eligibility)
  • Nibedita Sen (2nd year of eligibility)
  • Tasha Suri (2nd year of eligibility)
  • Emily Tesh (1st year of eligibility)

R.F. Kuang was my own nominee.  Nibedita Sen is also a finalist for Best Short Story.  The other four authors are on my TBR list.

Who are you excited to see here?  And who are you looking forward to learning more about?

2018 Hugo Finalists: Best Editor, Long Form

Here is a guide to some of the work from this year’s six Hugo Finalists for Best Editor, Long Form.  Generally speaking, it is not easy to figure out who has done what in this category.  For each of the following editors, I’ve done my best to determine the novel-length works they edited which appeared during 2017 with links to excerpts where available.  Please leave any corrections or additions in the comments.

Update June 8, 2018:  Now that the Hugo Voter Packet is available, I’ve revised the following lists to reflect the information provided by the finalists themselves.

Update July 28, 2018:  Devi Pillai’s Hugo Voter Packet information has been corrected, and I’ve revised this post accordingly.


Sheila E. Gilbert is with DAW Books and has won one out of six nominations in this category.  As Seanan McGuire’s editor, she worked on Magic for Nothing, book six of the InCrypted series (one of this year’s Best Series finalists), and The Brightest Fell, book eleven of the October Daye series (one of last year’s Best Series finalists).  For those of us not caught up on series, here are the stand-alone or first-in-series books that Gilbert published in 2017:


Joe Monti is with Saga Press, and this is his first Hugo nomination.  Here are the 2017 novels which Monti edited:


Diana M. Pho is with Tor Books, and this is her first Hugo nomination.  I know exactly what 2017 books she edited because she did an eligibility post!  Here are the stand-alone or first-in-series books mentioned:


Devi Pillai moved from Orbit Books to Tor Books in 2016, and this is her second nomination in this category.  At Tor she co-edited Oathbringer by Brandon Sanderson, the third book in The Stormlight Archive (one of this year’s Best Series Finalists), along with Moshe Feder.  Pillai also edited the following 2017 novels from Orbit:


Miriam Weinberg is with Tor Books, and this is her second nomination in this category.  Among the 2017 books that she edited was Within the Sanctuary of Wings by Marie Brennan, the fifth and final book in one of this year’s Best Series Finalists, The Memoirs of Lady Trent.  With the exception of The Tiger’s Daughter by K Arsenault Rivera, the remaining books edited by Weinberg are also later books in series:


Navah Wolfe is with Saga Press, and this is her second nomination in this category.  Here are the 2017 stand-alone or first-in-series books Wolfe edited:


Four out of six here are repeat finalists from last year along with two first-time finalists.  Devi Pillai was my one nominee who made the final ballot in this category.  I will definitely need to find out more and at least read some excerpts before making any decisions here.  What are your thoughts on these finalists?

2018 Hugo Finalists: Best Editor, Short Form

Here is a guide to the work of this year’s six Hugo Finalists for Best Editor, Short Form.  Wherever possible, I’ve added links to full text, excerpts, or more details on the short fiction they edited during 2017.  Please let me know if you have any additional information or corrections.


John Joseph Adams has been a finalist in this category seven times.  As editor of Lightspeed Magazine, he has won two out of five nominations for Best Semiprozine.  (Lightspeed is now a professional magazine and no longer qualifies as a semiprozine.)  Adams edited the following magazines and anthologies last year:


Neil Clarke has been a finalist in this category six times.  As editor of Clarkesworld Magazine, he has won three out of four nominations for Best Semiprozine.  (Clarkesworld has also graduated from semi-pro to pro and no longer qualifies in that category.)  Two novelettes from Clarkesworld“The Secret Life of Bots” by Suzanne Palmer and “A Series of Steaks” by Vina Jie-Min Prasad, are Hugo finalists this year.  Clarke edited the following magazines and anthologies last year:


Lee Harris was a 2014 finalist for Best Editor, Long Form.  This is his first time as finalist in this category.  He edited three of the Best Novella finalists:  All Systems Red by Martha Wells (Murderbot Diaries #1), Binti: Home by Nnedi Okorafor (Binti #2), and Down Among the Sticks and Bones by Seanan McGuire (Wayward Children #2).  Harris also edited the following short fiction from Tor.com last year:


Jonathan Strahan has been a finalist in this category nine times.  As co-host of The Coode Street Podcast, he has also been nominated five times for Best Fancast.  One of the novelettes he edited for Tor.com, “Extracurricular Activities” by Yoon Ha Lee (The Machineries of Empire), is a Hugo finalist this year.  Strahan also edited the following anthologies from Solaris and short fiction from Tor.com last year:


Lynne M. Thomas and Michael Damian Thomas are two-time finalists in this category.  As co-editors of Uncanny Magazine, they are also finalists for Best Semiprozine this year and the winners of that category for the previous two years.  As former editors of Apex Magazine, Lynne has three additional nominations for Best Semiprozine, and Michael has two.  Lynne has also won one of two nominations for co-editing Best Related Work finalists, won twice in Best Fancast as a moderator of SF Squeecast, and additionally been a finalist in Best Fancast both this year and in 2014 as a contributor to the Verity! Podcast.  Michael was also a co-editor of another Best Related Work finalist.  The following six stories from Uncanny Magazine are Hugo finalists this year:


Sheila Williams became the editor of Asimov’s Science Fiction Magazine in 2004 and has won two of eleven nominations in this category.  She was also a one-time finalist for Best Professional Editor just before the category was split into Long Form and Short Form.  One of Asimov’s novelettes, “Wind Will Rove” by Sarah Pinsker, is a Hugo Finalist this year.  Some of Asimov’s other notable stories from last year are currently available at the following links:


I imagine I will probably rank Lynne M. Thomas and Michael Damian Thomas first since they were my only nominees which made the finalist list in this category.  I’m a regular reader of both Lightspeed and Clarkesworld so John Joseph Adams and Neil Clark will probably be second and third.  I nominated stories edited by Lee Harris and Sheila Williams and enjoyed most of the online Tor.com stories edited by Jonathan Strahan, but I really need to read more before making my final decisions.  What are your thoughts on these finalists?

2018 Hugo Awards: Best Editor

The Hugo Award for Best Professional Editor was first award in 1973 when it replaced the Best Professional Magazine category.  In 2007 it was split into Short Form (editors of short fiction) and Long Form (editors of novels).


Best Editor, Short Form:

The editor of at least four (4) anthologies, collections, or magazine issues (or their equivalent in other media) primarily devoted to science fiction and/or fantasy, at least one of which was published in 2017.

I did some number crunching on the editors from the magazines I read last year to find out which had the highest percentage of stories I liked and the lowest percentage I disliked.


Best Editor, Long Form:

The editor of at least four (4) novel-length works primarily devoted to science fiction and/or fantasy, published in 2017 that do not qualify as works under Best Editor, Short Form.

For this category, I simply figured out the editors of my Best Novel choices and nominated them.

  • Jennifer Hershey
  • Will Hinton
  • Brit Hvide
  • Sean McDonald
  • Devi Pellai


A few years back, Kevin Standlee blogged about an idea for removing the editor categories and semiprozine and proposing three related but easier to vote on categories of publisher, anthology/collection, and professional magazine (including both pro and semi-pro, not fanzine).  However, the timing hasn’t been right to actually bring this to the Business Meeting since then.  Perhaps this will be the year since Kevin is one of the members of the Hugo Award Study Committee which will be offering suggestions.

I think I could get behind those changes.  It’s much simpler to find out who published what books as opposed to who edited them.  [ETA:  I see they very briefly had a Best SF Book Publisher category in 1964 and 1965.]  I don’t read too many anthologies or collections currently, but professional magazine would essentially be the same for me as short form editor.  What are your thoughts?