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Thursday, March 19, 2009

Locus Online Analyzes this year's Hugo Nominations

posted @ 3/19/2009 08:28:00 PM PT 

This year's Hugo Awards finalists (today integrated into the Locus Index to SF Awards) include first-time nominations for fiction authors Kij Johnson and Mary Robinette Kowal, nonfiction authors and editors Lillian Stewart Carl, John Helfers, and Paul Kincaid, artists Daniel Dos Santos and Alan F. Beck, and semiprozine and fanzine editors Neil Clarke, Nick Mamatas, Stephen H. Segal, Ann VanderMeer, Sean Wallace, and John Klima.

There are also numerous first-time nominations in the Graphic Story category, depending on whether every listed credit is considered a nomination; as in the dramatic presentation categories, the Locus Index to SF Awards notes credits listed on Hugo ballots as comments, but does not compile them as nominees. (This is consistent with the apparent policy of Hugo Awards administrators to present a single trophy to the winners of dramatic presentation categories, while co-winners of fiction and magazine/semiprozine/fanzine categories receive multiple trophies.)

Novel nominees this year include Neil Gaiman, who has won 3 Hugos for 5 prior nominations, wins including novel American Gods in 2002, novella Coraline in 2003, and short story "A Study in Emerald" in 2004. John Scalzi, Neal Stephenson, and Charles Stross each have one Hugo award each, Scalzi as fan writer in 2008, Stephenson for novel The Diamond Age in 1996, and Stross for novella "The Concrete Jungle" in 2005.

With this nomination, Stross now ties Robert Silverberg and Jack McDevitt for the most consecutive nominations in a single major award category, with six: he was nominated for Hugos for Singularity Sky, Iron Sunrise, Accelerando, Glasshouse, Halting State, and now Saturn's Children, in awards years 2004 through 2009, and has yet to win in this category. (See Table 24 in the Locus Index to SF Awards.)

Novella nominees Nancy Kress, Ian McDonald, and Robert Reed each have one Hugo win, Kress for novella "Beggars in Spain" in 1992, McDonald for novelette "The Djinn's Wife" in 2007, and Reed for novella "A Billion Eves" in 2007. Benjamin Rosenbaum has 2 previous nominations, Charles Coleman Finlay 1, with no wins.

Novelette nominee Mike Resnick has 31 Hugo nominations before this year, and 5 Hugo wins, from short story "Kirinyaga" in 1989 to short story "Travels with My Cats" in 2005. Elizabeth Bear won a Hugo last year for short story "Tideline", her first nomination. Paolo Bacigalupi has 3 previous Hugo nominations with no wins, James Alan Gardner 1, and John Kessel 3.

Short story nominees include Resnick, mentioned above, and Michael Swanwick, who has 5 Hugo wins out of 22 prior nominations -- most recently for novelette "Legions in Time" in 2004. Ted Chiang has 2 Hugo wins out of 6 prior nominations, for novelettes "Hell Is the Absence of God" in 2002 and "The Merchant and the Alchemist's Gate" in 2008.

In other categories, Cathy & Arnie Fenner have 7 prior nominations each, all for previous volumes of their Spectrum art anthology series, with no wins. Farah Mendlesohn has two prior nominations, and one Hugo win, for The Cambridge Companion to Science Fiction (with Edward James) in 2005.

Nominees in the Editor, Short Form and Editor, Long Form categories are exactly the same as last year, when Gordon Van Gelder and David G. Hartwell won.

This year's Professional Artist nominees are notable for excluding last year's winner, Stephan Martiniere. Daniel Dos Santos receives his first nomination, and Donato Giancola is nominated again after not being nominated last year, though he won the category in 2006 and 2007.

Semiprozine nominees this year include a webzine, Clarkesworld Magazine, and a revived print magazine, Weird Tales. Perennial nominee Ansible, whose editor Dave Langford shifted his publication from fanzine to semiprozine several years ago, is not nominated this year, for the first time since 2001. Langford is, however, a fan writer nominee this year.

Last year's fan writer winner John Scalzi is not nominated this year; John Hertz takes his place, among repeat nominees Chris Garcia, Dave Langford, Cheryl Morgan, and Steven H Silver.

See the Hugo Nominees List in the Locus Index to SF Awards for a complete list of all nominations, by nominee, to date.


--Mark R. Kelly
special to Locus Online

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