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VanderMeer Creative Funds Octavia Project

VanderMeer Creative announced on December 6, 2016 that they will be funding The Octavia Project for 2016-2017

The Octavia Project is a free program for Brooklyn girls ages 12-17, that “uses girls’ passion in science fiction, fantasy, fan-fiction, and gaming to teach them skills in science, technology, art, and writing, equipping them with skills to dream and build new futures for themselves and their communities.” The Project also offers one-day workshops for teens, workshops for adults, and professional development for educators. It is named after Octavia E. Butler, “who broke barriers in writing and science fiction to become an award-winning and internationally recognized author (Kindred, Lilith’s Brood). We are inspired by her visions of possible futures and commitment to social justice.”

VanderMeer Creative is run by Ann VanderMeer & Jeff VanderMeer. For more information, see the official Octavia Project website.

2016 Goodreads Choice Awards

Winners of the 2016 Goodreads Choice awards for the “best books of 2016,” as chosen by users of the site, were announced December 6, 2016. There are several winners of genre interest.

Best Mystery & Thriller

Best Historical Fiction

Best Science Fiction

Best Fantasy

Best Horror

Best Debut Goodreads Author

Best Young Adult Fantasy

Best Middle Grade & Children’s

Goodreads reported 3,564,098 total votes cast, up from 3,007,748. For the full list of categories and nominees, see the official website.

2016 Tiptree Fellowship Winners

Mia Sereno and Porpentine Charity Heartscape are the 2016 recipients of the Tiptree Fellowship. Each winner will receive a $500 grant, and work produced as a result of this support will be recognized and promoted by the Tiptree Award.

The fellowship is designed for individuals “doing work that is changing the way we think about gender through speculative narrative – maybe in a form we would recognize as the science fiction or fantasy genre, maybe in some other way….”

Honorable mentions went to K. Tempest Bradford, Emily Coon, and Marianne Kirby. The selection committee was composed of 2015 Tiptree Fellows Elizabeth LaPensée and Walidah Imarisha; Tiptree Award winner Nike Sulway; and Tiptree Motherboard member Alexis Lothian.

For more information, see the official James Tiptree, Jr. Literary Award website.

Jenssen Wins Rotsler

Martin James Ditmar (“Dick”) Jenssen is the winner of the 2016 Rotsler Award for “long-time wonder-working with graphic art in amateur publications of the science fiction community.” The award was announced during Loscon 43 in Los Angeles CA, November 25-27, 2016.

The award is sponsored by the Southern California Institute for Fan Interests, and includes an honorarium of $300. The Rotsler judges are Mike Glyer, John Hertz, and Sue Mason.

Hoyt Home from Hospital

Author Sarah A. Hoyt, 54, was taken to the hospital on December 2, 2016 and kept for overnight observation after collapsing in her home. She reported on her blog, “While I did have some sort of a heart event, with continuing irregularities after, it is not in any way a ‘conventional heart attack.'”

Hoyt returned home on Saturday, December 3, and posted, “I’m okay for now.”

Smofcon 35 Announced

The 2017 Smofcon (Smofcon 35) will be held December 1-3, 2017, at the Back Bay Hilton in Boston MA. Laurie Mann is the convention chair. Attending memberships cost $50 until February 28, 2017, after which prices will change.

For more information, see the official website.

Yolen Named SFWA Grand Master

The Science Fiction & Fantasy Writers of America (SFWA) have named Jane Yolen the 33rd recipient of the Damon Knight Memorial Grand Master Award. SFWA president Cat Rambo said Yolen “epitomizes what a Grand Master should be. Her close to 300 hundred books, multiple awards, and overall high standard of prose and storytelling make her one of the treasures of fantasy and science fiction.”

The award, given for “lifetime achievement in science fiction and/or fantasy,” will be presented at the SFWA Nebula Conference held May 18-21, 2017 at the Pittsburgh Marriott Center in Pittsburgh PA.

For more, see the official SFWA website.

2016 Manchester Writing Competition Winners

Winners of the Manchester Writing Competition were announced November 25, 2016 at a ceremony in the medieval Baronial Hall at Chetham’s Library in Manchester. The competition is “designed to encourage new work and seek out the best creative writing from across the world.”

The winning story was by D.W. Wilson, who received a £10,000 prize. Several stories of possible genre interest also made the shortlist for the Manchester Fiction Prize:

  • “All This Concrete Beneath Your Feet”, D.W. Wilson
  • “The God Quetzalcoatl Has Retired and Now Runs a Pub in North Manchester”, Michael Conley
  • “Sixteen Feet”, Erinna Mettler
  • “The Dark Instruments”, Laura Pocock
  • “Succubus”, Lucy Ribchester
  • “The First Hard Rain”, Sophie Wellstood

Additionally, Dante Di Stefano and Rebecca Tamás split the £10,000 Manchester Poetry Prize.

This year’s Fiction Prize was judged by Janice Galloway, Juliet Pickering, and Nicholas Royle. The Poetry Prize was judged by Sarah Howe, Helen Mort, and Adam O’Riordan.

For the full shortlist, and to read the shortlisted works, see the official website.

2017 GUFF Candidates

Candidates for the 2017 Get Up-and-over Fan Fund (GUFF) were announced November 21, 2016:

  • Donna Maree Hanson
  • Sam Hawke
  • Belle McQuattie
  • Alexandra Pierce & Alisa Krasnostein (shared)

The 2017 fund will send fans from Australasia to Europe to attend Worldcon 75 in Helsinki, Finland. GUFF is open to anyone who has been active in science fiction fandom before the start of the previous year. Candidates for a northbound trip must be residents of Australia or New Zealand. Anyone active in fandom before the start of the previous year may nominate and vote for a candidate. Voting is open until April 1, 2017.

Costa Book Awards Shortlist

Two nominees in the 2016 Costa Book Awards shortlist in the Children’s Book category are of genre interest: The Monstrous Child by Frances Simon (Faber & Faber/Profile) and Time Traveling with a Hamster by Ross Welford (HarperCollins Children’s).

The Costa Book Awards “recognises some of the most enjoyable books of the year, written by authors based in the UK and Ireland.” Each winner in the five individual categories receives £5,000. The Costa Book of the Year, an award accompanied by a £30,000 prize, will be selected from the category winners and announced January 3, 2017.


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