Friday, July 26, 2019

2019 World Fantasy Award Nominees

Location: World Fantasy Convention, Los Angeles, California

Comments: When the World Fantasy Award was first conceived, part of the idea behind the award was to provide a fantasy oriented counterpoint to the science fiction focused Hugo and Nebula Awards. The World Fantasy Award would give fantasy fiction an opportunity to shine without having to compete with science fiction works, with the two sets of awards running parallel to one another, both dedicated to recognizing high quality works, but more importantly to recognizing a decidedly different set of works.

For many years, this seemed to be the case. The Hugo and Nebula Awards generally nominated and were awarded to science fiction oriented works, while the World Fantasy Award generally nominated and were awarded to fantasy works. In more recent years, on the other hand, these two sets of awards seem to be converging. The really interesting thing is that it isn't the World Fantasy Award that is bending towards the more venerable Hugo and Nebula awards by leaning toward more science fiction, but rather, those two awards seem to be leaning more towards fantasy. The clear implication here is that the science fiction side of the speculative fiction world has perhaps become a bit moribund, while the fantasy side has grown more dynamic and interesting. I have theories on why this might be happening, mostly related to the success of the Lord of the Rings movies and, to a lesser extent, the rise of self-publishing, but I haven't examined them rigorously as of yet.

Best Novel

Witchmark by C.L. Polk

Other Nominees:
In the Night Wood by Dale Bailey
The Mere Wife by Maria Dahvana Headley
The Poppy War by R.F. Kuang
Trail of Lightning by Rebecca Roanhorse

Best Long Fiction

The Privilege of the Happy Ending by Kij Johnson

Other Nominees:
Beneath the Sugar Sky by Seanan McGuire
The Black God’s Drums by P. Djèlí Clark
The Only Harmless Great Thing by Brooke Bolander
The Tea Master and the Detective by Aliette de Bodard

Best Short Fiction

(tie) Like a River Loves the Sky by Emma Törzs
(tie) Ten Deals with the Indigo Snake by Mel Kassel

Other Nominees:
The Court Magician by Sarah Pinsker
The Ten Things She Said While Dying: An Annotation by Adam-Troy Castro
A Witch’s Guide to Escape: A Practical Compendium of Portal Fantasies by Alix E. Harrow

Best Anthology

Worlds Seen in Passing: Ten Years of Short Fiction edited by Irene Gallo

Other Nominees:
Best New Horror #28 edited by Stephen Jones
The Book of Magic edited by Gardner Dozois
Robots vs. Fairies edited by Dominik Parisien and Navah Wolfe
Sword and Sonnet edited by Aidan Doyle, Rachael K. Jones, and E. Catherine Tobler

Best Collection

The Tangled Lands by Paolo Bacigalupi and Tobias S. Buckell

Other Nominees:
An Agent of Utopia: New & Selected Stories by Andy Duncan
How Long ‘til Black Future Month? by N.K. Jemisin
Phantom Limbs by Margo Lanagan
Still So Strange by Amanda Downum

Lifetime Achievement

Hayao Miyazaki
Jack Zipes

Other Nominees:

Best Artist

Rovina Cai

Other Nominees:
Galen Dara
Jeffrey Alan Love
Shaun Tan
Charles Vess

Special Award, Professional

Huw Lewis-Jones for The Writer’s Map: An Atlas of Imaginary Lands

Other Nominees:
C.C. Finlay, for Fantasy & Science Fiction editing
Irene Gallo for Art Direction at Tor Books and
Catherine McIlwaine for Tolkien: Maker of Middle-Earth exhibition
Julian Yap, Molly Barton, Jeff Li, and James Stuart for Serial Box

Special Award, Non-Professional

Scott H. Andrews for Beneath Ceaseless Skies: Literary Adventure Fantasy

Other Nominees:
Mike Allen for Mythic Delirium
Lynne M. Thomas and Michael Damian Thomas for Uncanny Magazine
E. Catherine Tobler for Shimmer Magazine
Terri Windling for Myth & Moor

Go to previous year's nominees: 2018
Go to subsequent year's nominees: 2020

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