Sunday, August 9, 2009

2009 Hugo Award Finalists

Location: Anticipation in Montreal, Quebec.

Comments: In 2009 Neil Gaiman continued his dominance of the Hugo Awards by winning the award for Best Novel for the second time, taking home the rocket statue for The Graveyard Book. At this point, it seems like anyone who is nominated for a Hugo against a work by Gaiman, a work related to something by Gaiman, or a work that Gaiman may have once approvingly thought about, should just start practicing their concession smile. The same could probably be said for Ted Chiang, but he tends to write more short fiction and not things like novels, novels that are adapted into movies, and episodes of the Doctor Who television series, so he isn't as widely known as Gaiman.

And while I'm mentioning the Doctor Who television series, I think I would be remiss if I pointed out that it didn't win the Hugo Award for Best Short Form Dramatic Presentation, which instead went to the brilliant Doctor Horrible's Sing-Along Blog. This is interesting, because it shows that an internet based project will be taken seriously by the Hugo voters. That the Doctor Who show not winning is notable is a testament to how dominant that show has become. I have to wonder, though, if the combined dominance of Neil Gaiman and Doctor Who is a passing thing, or an indication that the tastes of science fiction fans who vote for the Hugo Awards is narrowing?

Finally, this year saw the introduction of a new category - an award for Best Graphic Story, which was promptly won by Phil and Kaja Foglio's Girl Genius story Agatha Heterodyne and the Chapel of Bones. Given the history of graphic novels, this award was long overdue. On the other hand, given the greatness of the Sandman series, if this award had been around for longer, it probably just would have given Neil Gaiman more Hugos to put on his trophy shelf.

Best Novel

The Graveyard Book by Neil Gaiman

Other Finalists:
Anathem by Neal Stephenson
Little Brother by Cory Doctorow
Saturn's Children by Charles Stross
Zoe's Tale by John Scalzi

Best Novella

The Erdmann Nexus by Nancy Kress

Other Finalists:
The Political Prisoner by Charles Coleman Finlay
The Tear by Ian McDonald
True Names by Benjamin Rosenbaum and Cory Doctorow
Truth by Robert Reed

Best Novelette

Shoggoths in Bloom by Elizabeth Bear

Other Finalists:
Alastair Baffle's Emporium of Wonders by Mike Resnick
The Gambler by Paolo Bacigalupi
Pride and Prometheus by John Kessel
The Ray-Gun: A Love Story by James Alan Gardner

Best Short Story

Exhalation by Ted Chiang

Other Finalists:
26 Monkeys, Also the Abyss by Kij Johnson
Article of Faith by Mike Resnick
Evil Robot Monkey by Mary Robinette Kowal
From Babel's Fall'n Glory We Fled by Michael Swanwick

Best Nonfiction, Related, or Reference Work

Your Hate Mail Will Be Graded: A Decade of Whatever, 1998-2008 by John Scalzi

Other Finalists:
Rhetorics of Fantasy by Farah Mendlesohn
Spectrum 15: The Best in Contemporary Fantastic Art edited by Arnie Fenner and Cathy Fenner
The Vorkosigan Companion: The Universe of Lois McMaster Bujold by Lillian Stewart Carl and John Helfers
What It Is We Do When We Read Science Fiction by Paul Kincaid

Best Graphic Story

Girl Genius, Volume 8: Agatha Heterodyne and the Chapel of Bones by Phil Foglio, and Kaja Foglio

Other Finalists:
The Dresden Files: Welcome to the Jungle by Jim Butcher, illustrated by Ardian Syaf
Fables: War and Pieces by Bill Willingham, art by Steve Leialoha and Andrew Pepoy
Schlock Mercenary: The Body Politic by Howard Tayler
Serenity: Better Days by Brett Matthews and Joss Weedon, art by Will Conrad
Y: The Last Man, Volume 10: Whys and Wherefores by Brian K. Vaughan

Best Dramatic Presentation: Long Form


Other Finalists:
The Dark Knight
Hellboy II: The Golden Army
Iron Man

Best Dramatic Presentation: Short Form

Doctor Horrible's Sing-Along Blog

Other Finalists:
Battlestar Galactica: Revelations
Doctor Who: Turn Left
Doctor Who: Silence in the Library and Forest of the Dead
Lost: The Constant

Best Professional Editor: Short Form

Ellen Datlow

Other Finalists:
Stanley Schmidt
Jonathan Strahan
Gordon Van Gelder
Sheila Williams

Best Professional Editor: Long Form

David G. Hartwell

Other Finalists:
Lou Anders
Ginjer Buchanan
Patrick Nielsen Hayden
Beth Meacham

Best Professional Artist

Donato Giancola

Other Finalists:
Daniel Dos Santos
Bob Eggleton
John Picacio
Shaun Tan

Best Semi-Prozine

Weird Tales edited by Stephen H. Segal and Ann VanderMeer

Other Finalists:
Clarkesworld Magazine edited by Neil Clarke, Nick Mamatas, and Sean Wallace
Interzone edited by Andy Cox
Locus edited by Charles N. Brown, Kirsten Gong-Wong, and Liza Groen Trombi
The New York Review of Science Fiction edited by Kathryn Cramer, Kristine Dikeman, David G. Hartwell, and Kevin J. Maroney

Best Fanzine

Electric Velocipede edited by John Klima

Other Finalists:
Argentus edited by Steven H Silver
Banana Wings edited by Claire Brialey and Mark Plummer
Challenger edited by Guy H. Lillian III
The Drink Tank edited by Chris Garcia
File 770 edited by Mike Glyer

Best Fan Writer

Cheryl Morgan

Other Finalists:
Chris Garcia
John Hertz
Dave Langford
Steven H Silver

Best Fan Artist


Other Finalists:
Alan F. Beck
Brad W. Foster
Sue Mason
Taral Wayne

John W. Campbell Award for Best New Writer

David Anthony Durham

Other Finalists:
Aliette de Bodard
Felix Gilman
Tony Pi
Gord Sellar

What Are the Hugo Awards?

Go to previous year's finalists: 2008
Go to subsequent year's finalists: 2010

2009 Hugo Longlist     Book Award Reviews     Home