Friday, January 18, 2019

2019 Nerds of a Feather Hugo Awards Longlist, Part 4: Institutional Categories

Welcome to the fourth and final installment of the Nerds of a Feather, Flock Together 2019 Hugo Awards Longlist! (Parts 1, 2, and 3.)

This time we are looking at what are, for lack of a better term, the "nonfiction and institutional categories": Best Related Work, Best Semiprozine, Best Fanzine and Best Fancast. Now, those who follow this blog know how cranky The G can get on the subject of certain categories and their bizarre eligibility guidelines--and we've got two of them today (Best Semiprozine and Best Fancast). Nevertheless, I will do my best to stay calm and stick to the rules, frustrating as they can be. We reserve the right, however, to get a little snarky and passive-aggressive in the process.    

There are, however, some sticky issues that made putting this list together a bit difficult. Knowing what does or does not constitute a "fanzine" in the era of blogs, for example--and given that we may already be on the downward slide of that era, it only promises to get more difficult as time passes. Nevertheless, we have tried to create clear and consistent guidelines for inclusion in this category. Thus, to qualify, a fanzine: (1) must be a fan venture (i.e. must not generate a significant amount of money, or pay professional rates for work); (2) must publish a lot of content in a given year; and (3) must publish "award worthy" content. We did not discount single-author blogs from consideration, but criterion #2 makes it difficult for most single-author blogs to  merit consideration. Consequently, while a couple made it, most did not--including some very good ones.  

We also feel obliged to mention that 'nerds of a feather, flock together' is eligible in this category, but whether we belong on anyone's list (short, long, good or bad) is another story, and part of a conversation we aren't inclined to join. We'd much rather talk about all the other sites we like to read (and which meet the criteria outlined above). 

The category Best Fancast also presented issues, namely, on the question of whether podcasts hosted by profit-making websites were still fancasts. The issue here comes down to whether the podcasts qualify (given token-level payment for the podcasts themselves) or do not (given that the parent companies can employ at least some people full-time). There were internal disagreements on this question, but in the end we decided to include the podcasts in question, but make note that they may not meet the eligibility requirements. I personally encourage you to vote them in that category--both because they belong there and, consequently, because a rule that keeps them out is dumb. But that's just me. It is also worth noting that in the past 8-4 Play was a finalist for Fancast, and 8-4 Play is hosted by 8-4, a professional video game localization company. If 8-4 Play is eligible, and passed the vetting process of the Hugo committee, than so should most everything else. But that's just our opinion.

Also, this's year's Worldcon is debuting a special one time category: Art Book, which has been poorly publicized as a category (though hopefully as nominations open this will become much more clear and advertised) 

Before moving on to the recommendations, a gentle reminder that this list is not and does not intend to be a comprehensive survey of genre or fandom. Rather, these are recommendations we suggest you consider alongside whatever other candidates you have in mind.  - G & Joe

Related Work
An Informal History of the Hugos, by Jo Walton
Archive of Our Own
Astounding: John W. Campbell, Isaac Asimov, Robert A. Heinlein, L. Ron Hubbard, and the Golden Age of Science Fiction, by Alec Nevala-Lee
Feminist Futures, by Joe Sherry, Adri Joy, Vance Kotrla, Phoebe Wagner, Charles Payseur, and Chloe Clark
Modern Masters of Science Fiction: Arthur C. Clarke, by Gary Westfahl
None of This is Normal: The Fiction of Jeff VanderMeer, by Benjamin J. Roberton
Trash and Treasure, by Foz Meadows
Ursula K. Le Guin: Conversations on Writing, by Ursula K. Le Guin and David Naimon
X-Marks the Story, by Charles Payseur

Art Book
The Book Smugglers
The Dark
Fireside Fiction
FIYAH Literary Magazine
Strange Horizons
Uncanny Magazine

Lady Business (Clare, Ira, Jodie, KJ, Renay, Susan, eds.)
SF in Translation (Rachel Cordasco)
SFFReviews (Sara Uckelman and Sarah Grace Liu)
SFFWorld (Dag Rambruat, Rob Bedford, Mark Yon, and Nila White, eds.)
Quick Sip Reviews (Charles Payseur)
Women Write About Comics (Kayleigh Hearn, Kat Overland, Claire Napier, Kate Tanski, Wendy Browne, eds.)

Aces & Jokers
The Coode Street Podcast
Ditch Diggers
Females in Fantasy
Jay and Miles X-Plain the X-Men
Kalanadi (Booktube)
Kitty G (Booktube)
Our Opinions Are Correct
Sisters of Sci-Fi
SF3 (Sci-Fi, Sci-Fi, Sci-Fi)
SFF180 (Booktube)
SFF Yeah!
Skiffy and Fanty
Sword and Laser

POSTED BY: Joe Sherry - Co-editor of Nerds of a Feather, 2017 & 2018 Hugo Award Finalist for Best Fanzine. Minnesotan. 

Thursday, January 17, 2019

Thursday Morning Superhero

Today's abbreviated Thursday Morning Superhero is brought to you by ComiXology as I did not have a chance to make it to my local comic book store. 2019 has been oddly busy, but thanks to the advent and growth of digital comics I am able to maintain my pull list and keep up with the phenomenal series from Jeff Lemire and Donny Cates.

Pick of the Week:
Gideon Falls #10 - It seems we finally have our issue that allows the path of Norton and his quest for the Black Barn cross with Father Wilfred and the repercussions are not positive. Apparently the Black Barn dates back to a mysterious murder in the late 1800's and I have a feeling that Norton's connection to the Barn goes deeper than first imagined. I worry what the two have awakened crossing paths and am sitting on the edge of my seat waiting to see what Jeff Lemire has planned for us now that the door has been opened.  This does not bode well and is shaping up as a potential True Detective season four.

The Rest:
Babyteeth #14 - Sadie is at long last reunited with her baby and the reunion in Hell is not as heartwarming as you may have guessed. There are still a lot of questions as to how Sadie ended up giving birth to the Anti-Christ and how the hell they are going to get out of...hell. This issue was a dramatic turn from other issues and allowed us to see Sadie for the vulnerable mother that she is at heart. It was uplifting, although problematic given the situation Sadie and her family are in.

The Batman Who Laughs #2 - Batman has been infected with the Joker toxin and it is only a matter of time before the serums he is injecting himself with become ineffective. In this issue, brilliantly illustrated by Jock, Bruce Wayne confronts the demons infecting Gotham City while coping with the severity of his current infection. It plays out almost as if Wayne is accepting his fate due to the serum and identifying an appropriate successor. I love having Scott Snyder paired with Jock for a Batman series. It is what every DC fan has been clamoring for.

POSTED BY MIKE N. aka Victor Domashev -- comic guy, proudly raising nerdy kids, and Nerds of a Feather contributor since 2012.

Wednesday, January 16, 2019

2019 Nerds of a Feather Hugo Awards Longlist, Part 3: Individual Categories

Welcome to the third part of our presentation of the Nerds of a Feather 2018 Hugo Award Longlist (see parts 1 & 2). Today we take a look at the categories recognizing individuals for their body of work during 2018:  Editor (Short and Long Form), Professional Artist, Fan Artist, Fan Writer, and the John W Campbell Award for Best New Writer

As before, we here at 'nerds of a feather, flock together' are presenting a collective longlist of potential Hugo nominees that we think are worthy of your consideration. These selections represent the spectrum of tastes, tendencies, and predilections found among our group of 13 writers.

As a reminder, this list should not at all be considered comprehensive. There are some truly outstanding editors, writers, and artists who will not make our longlist because they did not produce enough work for non-paying / non-professional venues, did not write enough genre focused work, or for the very simple reason that we are not just familiar with what work they did produce during 2018. We encourage you to think of this as a list of candidates to consider alongside works which you are already familiar, nothing more and nothing less. 

In an effort at brevity (you may scoff) and perhaps at propriety, for these categories we have decided to simply list the individuals we are collectively recommending as part of the longlist, rather than detailing why each person listed below is awesome.

Finally, in the interests of being transparent, while it may worth noting that we, the writers of Nerds of a Feather are individually eligible for the Fan Writer category; because it is a conflict of interest, it would not appropriate to include any of us on our formal longlist (feel free to check out our Awards Eligibility post, though).

Editor: Short Form
John Joseph Adams (Lightspeed, Nightmare)
Scott H. Andrews (Beneath Ceaseless Skies)
Neil Clarke (Clarkesworld)
Jane Crowley and Kate Dollarhyde (Strange Horizons)
Ana Grilo and Thea James (The Book Smugglers)
Julia Rios (Fireside Fiction)
Rashida J. Smith (GigaNotoSaurus)
Jonathan Strahan (Infinity's End, Time Was,, etc)
Lynne M. Thomas & Michael Damien Thomas (Uncanny)
Sean Wallace & Silvia Moreno-Garcia (The Dark)

Editor: Long Form
Nobody. But, we recommend that when you put together your final nominating ballot that you also look at who the editors were for your Best Novel selections and consider them for nomination for Editor, Long Form

Professional Artist
Geneva Benton (site)
Galen Dara (portfolio, includes older work)
Victo Ngai (site)
John Picacio (Loteria and other selected works)
Simon Prades (site)
Greg Ruth (Binti and other selected works)
Yuko Shimizu (portfolio)

Fan Artist
Jemima Malkki (specifically for this piece)

Fan Writer
Rob Bedford
Liz Bourke
Rachel Cordasco
James Davis Nicoll (also
Abigail Nussbaum
Charles Payseur

John W. Campbell Award for Best New Writer
(not a Hugo, but totally a Hugo)

Katherine Arden (Bear and the Nightingale)
S.A. Chakraborty (City of Brass)
Nicky Drayden (Prey of Gods)
R.F. Kuang (The Poppy War) 
Bethany C. Morrow (Mem)
K. Arsenault Rivera (The Tiger’s Daughter)
Bina Shah (Before She Sleeps) - uncertain if this is her first speculative novel  
Rivers Solomon (An Unkindness of Ghosts)

POSTED BY: Joe Sherry - Co-editor of Nerds of a Feather, 2017 & 2018 Hugo Award Finalist for Best Fanzine. Minnesotan.  

Tuesday, January 15, 2019

2019 Nerds of a Feather Hugo Awards Longlist, Part 2: Visual Work Categories

Welcome to our continuing presentation of the Nerds of a Feather 2019 Hugo Award Longlist (see part 1 here). Today will look at Graphic Story and the two Dramatic Presentation categories.  

As before, we here at 'nerds of a feather, flock together' are presenting a collective longlist of potential Hugo nominees that we think are worthy of your consideration. These selections represent the spectrum of tastes, tendencies, and predilections found among our group of 13 writers.

As a reminder, this list should not at all be considered comprehensive. Some outstanding works will not make our longlist for the simple reason that we have not seen or read it. We encourage you to think of this as a list of candidates to consider alongside works which you are already familiar, nothing more and nothing less.  

Graphic Story
Destroyer, Victor LaValle and Dietrich Smith
Lumberjanes, Volume 8: Stone Cold, by Shannon Waters and Kat Leyh
Monstress: Volume 3: Haven, by Marjorie M. Liu and Sana Takeda
Saga: Volume 9, by Brian K. Vaughan and Fiona Staples
The Walking Dead, Volume 29: The Lines We Cross, by Robert Kirkman and Charlie Adlard
White Sand: Volume 2, by Brandon Sanderon, Rik Hoskin, and Julius Gopez
X-Men: Grand Design, by Ed Piskor

Dramatic Presentation, Long Form
Annihilation, directed by Alex Garland
Avengers: Infinity War, directed by Anthony and Joe Russo
The Banner Saga 3 (Video Game)
Black Panther, directed by Ryan Coogler
Critical Role Campaign 2: Episode 26
The Endless, directed by Justin Benson and Aaron Moorhead
Hereditary, directed by Ari Aster
I Kill Giants, directed by Anders Waller
Incredibles 2, directed by Brad Bird
Pacific Rim: Uprising, directed by Steven S. DeKnight
Ready Player One, directed by Steven Spielberg
Solo: A Star Wars Story, directed by Ron Howard
Sorry to Bother You, directed by Boots Riley
Spider-Man: Into the Spider-Verse, directed by Bob Persichetti, Peter Ramsey, Rodney Rothman
A Quiet Place, directed by John Krasinski
A Wrinkle in Time, directed by Ava DuVernay

Dramatic Presentation, Short Form
(full seasons of any show can be nominated as Dramatic Presentation, Long Form)

Altered Carbon: Season 1, created by Laeta Kalogridas
Recommended Episode: S1E1: "Out of the Past"

Castle Rock: Season 1, created by Sam Shaw and Dustin Thomason
Recommended Episode: S1E7: "The Queen"

Dirty Computer (Album), by Janelle Monae

Dirty Computer: Emotion Picture, directed by Andrew Donoho and Chuck Lightning

Doctor Who, Season 11, created by Sydney Newman, Chris Chibnail (lead writer)
Recommended Episode: S11E9: "Rosa"

The Dragon Prince: Season 1, created by Aaron Ehasz and Justin Richmond
Recommended Episode: S1E3: "Moonrise"

The Expanse: Season 3, created by Mark Fergus and Hawk Ostby
Recommended Episode: S3E13: "Abaddon's Gate"

The Good Place: Season 3, created by Michael Schur
Recommended Episode: S3E9: "Janet(s)"

Steven Universe: Season 5, created by Rebecca Sugar
Recommended Episode: S5E23 "Reunited"

POSTED BY: Joe Sherry - Co-editor of Nerds of a Feather, 2017 & 2018 Hugo Award Finalist for Best Fanzine. Minnesotan.

Monday, January 14, 2019

2019 Nerds of a Feather Hugo Awards Longlist, Part 1: Fiction Categories

Several years ago our erstwhile founding editor The G asked the flock here at Nerds of a Feather if we would come together to put out a longlist of works we would recommend for Hugo consideration. Flock Together we did.

The rules for inclusion were simple--just: (a) meet the eligibility criteria; and (b) be "award worthy" (i.e. good). Given the subjectivity of the latter, it should come as no surprise that the selections on our longlist reflect the spectrum of tastes, tendencies and predilections found among our group of writers. You'll find selections ranging from the obscure and literary to the unabashedly popular and commercial, and from all corners and subdivisions of the genresphere.

That said, this is not nor intends to be a comprehensive survey of the field. Some books that are undoubtedly "award worthy," for example, are absent for the simple reason that we haven't read them yet. Thus we encourage you to think of this as a list of candidates to consider--alongside others. 

Given the vast number of Hugo categories, we've also made the decision to split the longlist up into multiple posts. Today we look at the fiction categories (Novel, Novella, Novelette and Short Story, Series, and the Not a Hugo Lodestar Award for YA Novel). For fiction that is available free of charge, we've embedded a direct link to the story. For novels and works of short fiction that are not available for free, the embedded link redirects to a review. 

In the interest of being transparent, it is worth noting that several of our writers have published fiction in 2018. Because it would be a conflict of interest, we are not including them on our longlist, but would still invite anyone interested to take a look at their work. Charles has a list of his eligible fiction here and Chloe has her list of fiction here.

Arden, Katherine. The Girl in the Tower [Del Rey]**
Baker, Mishell. Impostor Syndrome [Saga]
Bennett, Robert Jackson. Foundryside [Crown]
Chambers, Becky. Record of a Spaceborn Few [Harper Voyager]
de Bodard, Aliette. In the Vanishers' Palace [JABberwocky Literary Agency]
Donnelly, Lara Elena. Armistice [Tor]
Drayden, Nicky. Temper [Harper Voyager]
Emrys, Ruthanna. Deep Roots [ Publishing]
Hartman, Rachel. Tess of the Road [Random House]
Kowal, Mary Robinette. The Calculating Stars [Tor]
Kowal, Mary Robinette. The Fated Sky [Tor]
Kuang, R.F. The Poppy War [Harper Voyager]
Lee, Yoon Ha. Revenant Gun [Solaris]
Morrow, Bethany C. Mem [Unnamed Press]
Newman, Emma. Before Mars [Ace]
Novik, Naomi. Spinning Silver [Del Rey]
O'Dell, Claire. A Study in Honor [Harper Voyager]
Older, Malka. State Tectonics [ Publishing]
Powell, Gareth. Embers of War [Titan]
Roanhorse, Rebecca. Trail of Lightning [Saga]
Scalzi, John. Head On [Tor]
Scalzi, John. The Consuming Fire [Tor]
Valente, Catherynne M. Space Opera [Saga]

**The Girl in the Tower may have been published in 2017 and would then not be eligible for the Hugo Award. That said, it's a wonderful novel and worth reading.

Berger, Michele Tracy, "Nussia" [The Book Smugglers, June 26]
Clark. P Djeli. The Black Gods Drums [ Publishing]
Gilman, Caroline Ives, "Umberlight" [Clarkesworld, Feb 2018]
Jacobs, John Horner. The Sea Dreams It Is the Sky [Harper Voyager]
Jones, Rachel K. Every River Runs to Salt [Fireside]
McGuire, Seanan. Beneath the Sugar Sky [ Publishing]
Robson, Kelly. Gods, Monsters, and the Lucky Peach [ Publishing]
Sanford, Jason. "The Emotionless, In Love" [Beneath Ceeaseless Skies: Issue 246]
Tchaikovsky, Adrian. The Expert System's Brother [ Publishing]
Wallace, Matt. Taste of Wrath [ Publishing]
Watts, Peter. The Freeze Frame Revolution [Tachyon]
Wells, Martha. Artificial Condition [ Publishing]
Wells, Martha. Rogue Protocol [ Publishing]
Wells, Martha. Exit Strategy [ Publishing]
Willrich, Chris. "Shadowdrop" [Beneath Ceaseless Skies: Issue 261]
Wilson, Lena. Accelerants [The Book Smugglers]
Yang, JY. "Between the Firmaments" [The Book Smugglers, Oct 9-11]
Yang, JY. The Descent of Monsters [ Publishing]

Bolander, Brooke. The Only Harmless Great Thing [ Publishing]
Bolander, Brooke. "No Flight Without the Shatter" [, Aug 15]
Cipri, Nino, “Dead Air” [Nightmare, Aug 2018]
Johnson, Kij, “The Privilege of the Happy Ending” [Clarkesworld, Aug 2018]
Longxiang, Luo, translated by Dudak, Andy, “The Foodie Federation’s Dinosaur Farm”[Clarkesworld, Sep 2018]
Pang, Y.M., “The Palace of the Silver Dragon” [Strange Horizons, Oct 1]
Rolon, Nelson, “Saudade" [Fiyah: Issue 8]
Ronald, Margaret, “Silence in Blue Glass” [Beneath Ceaseless Skies: Issue 250]
Rustad, A. Merc & Hoffmann, Ada, “I Sing Against the Silent Sun” [Lightspeed, June 2018]
Thompson, Tade. "Kaseem's Way" [Creatures: The Legacy of Frankenstein]
Tsamaase, Tlotlo, “Murders Fell From Our Wombs” [Apex: Issue 107]
Wanak, LaShawn M. "Sister Rosetta Tharpe and Memphis Minnie Sings the Stumps Down Good" [Fiyah: Issue 7]
Wilde, Fran. "Disconnect" [Uncanny: Issue 24]
Yap, Isabel. "How to Swallow the Moon" [Uncanny: Issue 25]

Short Story
Alexander, William, “The House on the Moon” [Uncanny: Issue 24]
Beautement, Tiah Marie, “Momento Mori” [Omenana, Aug 30]
Clarke, Phenderson Djeli. "The Secret Lives of the Nine Negro Teeth of George Washington" [Fireside Fiction, Feb 2018]
Dollarhyde, Kate, "A Taxonomy of Hurts" [Fireside Fiction, Aug 2018]
Gailey, Sarah. "STET" [Fireside Fiction, Oct 2018]
Harrow, Alix E., “A Witch’s Guide to Escape: A Practical Compendium of Portal Fantasies” [Apex]
Hoffman, Ada, “Variations on a Theme from Turandot” [Strange Horizons, May 14]
Kritzer, Naomi. "The Thing About Ghost Stories" [Uncanny, Issue 25]
Lee, PH. "A House by the Sea" [Uncanny, Issue 24]
Muneshwar, Ian, “Salt Lines” [Strange Horizons, May 28]
McGuire, Seanan. "Swear Not by the Moon" [Infinity's End]
Nagata, Linda. "Longing for Earth" [Infinity's End]
Pinsker, Sarah. "The Court Magician" [Lightspeed, Jan 2018]
Prasad, Vina Jie-Min, “Pistol Grip” [Uncanny: Issue 21]
Royce, Eden. "Every Good-bye Ain't Gone" [Strange Horizons, July 30]
Sjunneson-Henry, Elsa and A. Merc Rustad. "By Claw, By Hand, By Silent Speech" [Uncanny, Issue 23]
Szpara, K.M., “You Can Make a Dinosaur, but You Can’t Help Me” [Uncanny: Issue 23]
Wong, Alyssa. "All the Time We've Left to Spend" [Robots vs. Fairies]

The Arcadia Project, by Mishell Baker
The Bel Dame Apocrypha, by Kameron Hurley
The Centenel Cycle, by Malka Older
The Devil's West, by Laura Anne Gilman
Foreigner, by C.J. Cherryh
Guardians of Aandor, by Edward Lazellari
The Illuminae Files, by Amie Kaufman and Jay Kristoff
The Machineries of Empire, by Yoon Ha Lee
Majestic-12, by Mike Martinez
October Daye, by Seanan McGuire
The Planetfall Novels, by Emma Newman
The Railhead Trilogy, by Philip Reeve
The Recluce Saga, by L.E. Modesitt, Jr
The Seraphina / Goredd Books, by Rachel Hartman
Sin du Jour, by Matt Wallace
Wild Cards, by George R.R. Martin
The Yesterday's Kin Trilogy, by Nancy Kress

Lodestar (YA Novel)
Adeyemi, Tomi. Children of Blood and Bone [Henry Holt]
Hartman, Rachel. Tess of the Road [Random House]
Ireland, Justina. Dread Nation [Balzer + Bray]
Kemp, Juliet. A Glimmer of Silver [Book Smugglers]
Lien, Henry. Peasprout Chen, Future Legend of Skate and Sword [Henry Holt]
Pierce, Tamora. Tempests and Slaughter [Random House]
Westerfeld, Scott. Impostors [Scholastic]
Wilson, Lena. Accelerants [Book Smugglers]

POSTED BY: Joe Sherry - Co-editor of Nerds of a Feather, 2017 & 2018 Hugo Award Finalist for Best Fanzine. Minnesotan.