Apr 24 2011 6:30pm

2011 Hugo Finalists

2011 Hugo Award nominationsThe finalists for the 2011 Hugo Awards have been announced.

The Hugo Awards have been given since 1953, and every year since 1955, by the annual World Science Fiction Convention (the “Worldcon”). The first Worldcon occurred in New York City in 1939, and Worldcons have been held annually since then except during World War II. This year’s Worldcon, Renovation, will be held in Reno, Nevada from August 17 through 21, 2011; its Guests of Honor will be Ellen Asher, Charles N. Brown (in memoriam), Tim Powers, and Boris Vallejo.

Renovation logo

Hugo Award finalists are selected by members of the previous Worldcon and of the upcoming one; winners are selected by members of the upcoming one. All Attending, Young Adult, and Supporting members of Renovation can vote on the final ballot.  For more information about voting in the Hugo Awards, or becoming a member of Renovation, please click here.

The winners will be announced Saturday, August 20th, 2011, during the Hugo Awards Ceremony at Renovation in Reno, Nevada.

The nominees for the 2011 Hugo Awards are:

Best Novel
Blackout/All Clear by Connie Willis (Ballantine Spectra)
Cryoburn by Lois McMaster Bujold (Baen)
The Dervish House by Ian McDonald (Gollancz; Pyr)
Feed by Mira Grant (Orbit)
The Hundred Thousand Kingdoms by N.K. Jemisin (Orbit)

Best Novella
“The Lady Who Plucked Red Flowers beneath the Queen’s Window” by Rachel Swirsky (Subterranean Magazine, Summer 2010)
The Lifecycle of Software Objects by Ted Chiang (Subterranean)
“The Maiden Flight of McCauley’s Bellerophon” by Elizabeth Hand (Stories: All New Tales, William Morrow)
“The Sultan of the Clouds” by Geoffrey A. Landis (Asimov’s, September 2010)
“Troika” by Alastair Reynolds (Godlike Machines, Science Fiction Book Club)

Best Novelette
“Eight Miles” by Sean McMullen (Analog, September 2010)
“The Emperor of Mars” by Allen M. Steele (Asimov’s, June 2010)
“The Jaguar House, in Shadow” by Aliette de Bodard (Asimov’s, July 2010)
“Plus or Minus” by James Patrick Kelly (Asimov’s, December 2010)
“That Leviathan, Whom Thou Hast Made” by Eric James Stone (Analog, September 2010)

Best Short Story
“Amaryllis” by Carrie Vaughn (Lightspeed, June 2010)
“For Want of a Nail” by Mary Robinette Kowal (Asimov’s, September 2010)
“Ponies” by Kij Johnson (, November 17, 2010)
“The Things” by Peter Watts (Clarkesworld, January 2010)

Best Related Work
Bearings: Reviews 1997-2001, by Gary K. Wolfe (Beccon)
The Business of Science Fiction: Two Insiders Discuss Writing and Publishing, by Mike Resnick and Barry N. Malzberg (McFarland)
Chicks Dig Time Lords: A Celebration of Doctor Who by the Women Who Love It, edited by Lynne M. Thomas and Tara O’Shea (Mad Norwegian)
Robert A. Heinlein: In Dialogue with His Century, Volume 1: (1907–1948): Learning Curve, by William H. Patterson, Jr. (Tor)
Writing Excuses, Season 4, by Brandon Sanderson, Jordan Sanderson, Howard Tayler, Dan Wells

Best Graphic Story
Fables: Witches, written by Bill Willingham; illustrated by Mark Buckingham (Vertigo)
Girl Genius, Volume 10: Agatha Heterodyne and the Guardian Muse, written by Phil and Kaja Foglio; art by Phil Foglio; colors by Cheyenne Wright (Airship Entertainment)
Grandville Mon Amour, by Bryan Talbot (Dark Horse)
Schlock Mercenary: Massively Parallel, written and illustrated by Howard Tayler; colors by Howard Tayler and Travis Walton (Hypernode)
The Unwritten, Volume 2: Inside Man, written by Mike Carey; illustrated by Peter Gross (Vertigo)

Best Dramatic Presentation, Long Form
Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows: Part 1, screenplay by Steve Kloves; directed by David Yates (Warner)
How to Train Your Dragon, screenplay by William Davies, Dean DeBlois & Chris Sanders; directed by Dean DeBlois & Chris Sanders (DreamWorks)
Inception, written and directed by Christopher Nolan (Warner)
Scott Pilgrim vs. the World, screenplay by Michael Bacall & Edgar Wright; directed by Edgar Wright (Universal)
Toy Story 3, screenplay by Michael Arndt; story by John Lasseter, Andrew Stanton & Lee Unkrich; directed by Lee Unkrich (Pixar/Disney)

Best Dramatic Presentation, Short Form
Doctor Who: “A Christmas Carol,” written by Steven Moffat; directed by Toby Haynes (BBC Wales)
Doctor Who: “The Pandorica Opens/The Big Bang,” written by Steven Moffat; directed by Toby Haynes (BBC Wales)
Doctor Who: “Vincent and the Doctor,” written by Richard Curtis; directed by Jonny Campbell (BBC Wales)
Fuck Me, Ray Bradbury, written by Rachel Bloom; directed by Paul Briganti
The Lost Thing, written by Shaun Tan; directed by Andrew Ruhemann and Shaun Tan (Passion Pictures)

Best Editor, Short Form
John Joseph Adams
Stanley Schmidt
Jonathan Strahan
Gordon Van Gelder
Sheila Williams

Best Editor, Long Form
Lou Anders
Ginjer Buchanan
Moshe Feder
Liz Gorinsky
Nick Mamatas
Beth Meacham
Juliet Ulman

Best Professional Artist
Daniel Dos Santos
Bob Eggleton
Stephan Martiniere
John Picacio
Shaun Tan

Best Semiprozine
Clarkesworld, edited by Neil Clarke, Cheryl Morgan, Sean Wallace; podcast directed by Kate Baker
Interzone, edited by Andy Cox
Lightspeed, edited by John Joseph Adams
Locus, edited by Liza Groen Trombi and Kirsten Gong-Wong
Weird Tales, edited by Ann VanderMeer and Stephen H. Segal

Best Fanzine
Banana Wings, edited by Claire Brialey and Mark Plummer
Challenger, edited by Guy H. Lillian III
The Drink Tank, edited by Christopher J Garcia and James Bacon
File 770, edited by Mike Glyer
StarShipSofa, edited by Tony C. Smith

Best Fan Writer
James Bacon
Claire Brialey
Christopher J Garcia
James Nicoll
Steven H Silver

Best Fan Artist
Brad W. Foster
Randall Munroe
Maurine Starkey
Steve Stiles
Taral Wayne

John W. Campbell Award for Best New Writer
Award for the best new professional science fiction or fantasy writer of 2009 or 2010, sponsored by Dell Magazines (not a Hugo Award).
Saladin Ahmed
Lauren Beukes
Larry Correia
Lev Grossman
Dan Wells
Note: All Campbell finalists are in their 2nd year of eligibility.

Rinn Ziegler
1. Rinn Ziegler
Congratulations and good luck to all the nominees!
Lee VanDyke
2. Cloric
Moshe Feder.... is that the same Moshe that works with Brandon Sanderson?
Chris Nelson
3. wubbster
I absolutely LOVE that "Fuck Me, Ray Bradbury" is nominated.
That made my weekend. :)
Rinn Ziegler
4. Raskolnikov
Thoughts on the novels:

Looks to be a pretty weak shortlist. I appear to be in the minority on my dislike for Blackout/All Clear, and am in the distinct minority for my objections to Feed. I retain objections, though, and don't see these works as at all representative of the best of the year, in ambition, writing, basic quality control or in using tools of the genre. Willis' work is profoundly boring and stylistically framed. Feed banks heavily on the thoroughness of its imaginative concept while failing to think through its setting effectively and indulging in the worst kind of political strawmen and idiot plotting. One can read the novel in a more effective sense in, as the recent Strange Horizons review has it, as a sharp media satire, and that takes a little of the bitter taste from my mouth. Not all of it, though, as I'm not at all convinced that was the book Grant wrote. Cryoburn isn't as bad as either, but is in some ways even more disappointing: a strong writer returning to a familiar setting and doing about the minimum effort to string together a conventional plot. At least Feed and Blackout/All Clear were clearly significant investments in their author's time, for all that I felt it was misapplied they were labors of enthusiasm. Cryoburn suggests quite strongly that Bujold was bored and making little effort, re-running familiar scenarios into predictable plot that doesn't challenge or grow the characters. The politics are simplistic, the only powerful moments come in a coda unconnected to the main story, and the whole thing looks very tossed together. It's very dispiriting that readers will be so eager to embrace a familiar author and setting that they'd give nominee status to such a weak return.

The Dervish House is magnificent and hopefully it can win, but nothing else on the shortlist comes close to meriting its place. The Hundred Thousand Kingdoms is pretty good and does approach some themes in an interesting manner, but it fails to follow through on the implications enough. And while there's no Sawyer here, the result remains a shortlist that's 60% mediocre. Much weaker than last year's novel list, and almost as bad as 2009's. Although there at least is something to be said that the list isn't as familiar, with a number of new authors and returning ones at least not nominated recently. I'll also note that it's an 80% female shortlist, for what I'm guessing may be the highest ratio. It's a pity that on the level of content the voters seem to have generally embraced a conentional style over substance, with a focus on familiar World War Two moralizing, a regurgitation of the Vorkosigan setting and yet another exploration of the zombie phenomenon. In part I'm reacting to the disconnect from my own top preferences and votes, but beyond that I do feel there are a number of objective problems with this as a set of best science fiction and fantasy of the year. At least there is Dervish House, and to a lesser extent the Hundred Thousand Kingdoms.
Rinn Ziegler
6. Ian P. Johnson
I hope that "Fuck Me, Ray Bradbury" wins the Best Dramatic Presentation, Short Form award. Of course, I don't know if this is going to happen, what with there being an Oscar-winning short film and three Doctor Who episodes nominated. But this is awesome that there's a relatively short novelty music video nominated next to the rest of the big, serious entries. That's pretty cool– although with the recent rush of Who fandom on this side of the Atlantic, it may have about the same chance as "Do You Wanna Date My Avatar" would have at the Grammys.

Oh, and Randall Munroe being nominated for Best Fan Artist– awesome. I've been a fan of xkcd since before it became insanely popular, so I'm a little biased here.

Also, when is there going to be a Hugo Award for Best Video Game? It can't be long now…
Rinn Ziegler
7. Kevin Standlee
Ian P. Johnson @6:

Also, when is there going to be a Hugo Award for Best Video Game? It can't be long now…

The 2006 Worldcon trialed such a category using their authority to create a one-shot Hugo Award category. They received so few nominations that they dropped it. Conventional thinking is that insufficient time has passed to try it again. However, the current wording of the Best Related Work category is so broad that if enough people nominated a video game in that category, it is likely that it would stand. So if you think there are video games out there worthy of a Hugo Award, try nominating them in Best Related Work.
Rob Munnelly
8. RobMRobM
Congrats to for the Ponies nomination. I actually liked other stories on the site better and was disappointed they didn't get another.

I was glad for the nominations for Willis and Bujold. In the disappointments category, I was hoping for a nomination for GRRM's Mystery Knight, which I enjoyed very much, but not to be.

Matt London
9. MattLondon
There is some amazing history-making stuff in those editor categories. SO EXCITING.

Also, the fact that there are more female nominees than male is fantastic. Does anyone know if this is the first time that has happened?

As a filmmaker I never thought I'd say this, but I'm getting on board with Jo's lack of appreciation for the Dramatic Presentation category. Do we really need a Dr. Whogo award every year?
Rinn Ziegler
10. Raskolnikov
And the three Doctor Who nominees weren't even the best episodes to air last year! It would have been posisble to come up with three or even five great episodes just from Doctor Who, but only Pandorica Opens/The Big Bang really qualifies. Vincent and the Doctor was off-balance, to my tastes, and A Christmas Carol pure fluff.
Bob Blough
11. Bob
Really surprised by the exclusion of the Sawyer yearly nomination - but I had pegged four of the five nominees before they announced them. Missed only the Feed nomination - and have not even read it. But, I have to agree with Raskolnikov about Cryoburn - easily a lesser novel in the Vorkosigan canon. I agree with him about The Dervish House, as well. It was the best novel of the year and I would include it as one of the best of the last 10 years. The other two are quite enjoyable if not up to The Dervish House but worthy nominees, I think (the Willis would have been a real favorite for a close second place if it had been cut by 100 pages or so).

They picked a great crop of novellas - but there were so many good ones this year that I think a lot were unfortunately missed.

Novelete and short story choices were atrocious in my opinion with "The Jaguar House, In Shadow" and "The Things" as the only worthy nominees.

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