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Sunday 1 April 2007

New award established "to honor excellence in science fiction awards"

by Marshal Gegith

NEW YORK, N.Y. The Organization of Award Recognition announced this morning the establishment of the Dimension Award, a prize for excellence in science fiction and fantasy awards practice, to be presented for the first time in 2007.

Administrator Thomas Carmody explained, "We realized that people were taking awards ceremonies seriously when an acceptance speech at an awards ceremony won a Hugo Award in 2004. When you look at that, and all the talk about awards on blogs, we realised that people are interested in awards as an end in themselves. And what better way to mark that than with an award?"

Funding for the Awards' administration, publicity and ceremony is being provided in its entirety by the Foil Embossing Manufacturers' Association. Explaining their decision to fund the award, FEMA's Chief Executive said, "Science fiction has been so good to the world of foil-embossing, we just had to give something back."

The Awards will be presented at a lavish banquet, tentatively scheduled to take place in New York City on September 31st this year. Tickets will be free but limited to those who apply in advance. Individuals who wish to request tickets should write as soon as possible to, explaining their interest in the world of award practice (e.g. as blogger, publisher, author, etc).

In 2007, categories for the Dimension Award will include:

  • Best award ceremony
  • Best new award
  • Best acceptance speech (short-form)
  • Best acceptance speech (long-form)
  • Best dignified silence in the face of getting passed over for nomination again
  • Most blatant grandstanding by an award presenter
  • Most foolish award jury decision subsequently justified as, "Well, we helped to spark debate about the field, and that's what matters after all"
  • Best blog post hypothesizing what the jury must have been thinking
  • Best blog post castigating the jury for their decision, by a blogger who hasn't read the winning book, but the one that lost was their favorite and so obviously it should have won
  • Lifetime achievement award for performances at award ceremonies above and beyond the call of duty

Nominations for all categories are now open for achievements in the calendar year 2006. Nominations can be submitted to Mr Carmody at Members of the sf and fantasy community are welcome to suggest additional categories for the Dimension Awards by email to the same address. Indeed, Mr Carmody noted, especially good suggestions may not only be added to the list of categories, but may also be eligible for a future Dimension Award for Best Category In An Award. In addition, the Dimension Award will be sponsoring an annual essay prize for a topic related to science fiction awards. The topic this year will be "The Nebula Award process: why it makes sense." Essays can be up to 100,000 words long.

Locus asked Mr Carmody whether he was worried that other competing awards would spring up honoring good award practice. "On the contrary," he said, "we would welcome it. We foresee see a world where all science fiction and fantasy activity is focussed on awards, and there's no need to worry about books or movies any more. We believe awards processes will gain momentum and complexity, and ultimately achieve self-awareness, untrammelled by the need to be about anything except awards. And when they do, we'll all deserve a prize."

© 2007 by Locus Publications. All rights reserved.