Pandas at FantasyCon
Alan Garner's Boneland by Tom Pollock

BFS Awards: Winners and Snap Judgements

In case you weren't at the ceremony (we weren't), the results of this year's experimental jury/vote hybrid thinger. Includes links to Pornokitsch reviews, where we've got 'em:

The ritualBest Novel (Fantasy): Jo Walton's Among Others

Best Novel (Horror): Adam Nevill's The Ritual

Best Novella: Lavie Tidhar's Gorel and the Pot-Bellied God

Best Anthology: The Weird (edited by Ann and Jeff VanderMeer)

Best Collection: Robert Shearman's Everyone's Just So, So Special 

Best Short Story: Angela Slatter's "The Coffin-Maker's Daughter"

Best Independent Press: Chomu Press

Film: Midnight in Paris

Best Comic: Locke and Key

Best Non-Fiction: Grant Morrison's Supergods

Best Newcomer: Kameron Hurley


Snap reaction below the jump...

Despite one glaring disappointment (more on Among Others later this week), this is a really impressive selection. Hell, The Ritual, Gorel, Supergods and The Weird were all things that I know I nominated in the early write-in stages. My glowing feelings about Kameron Hurley are also pretty well documented - I was part of the team that got to throw a rum-laced tentacle at her.

My knee-jerk worry is that the BFS may have gotten itself a bit of a Grimm-style fairytale ending. They/we (I'm a member) voted for a system that would make the award more 'respectable'.* The jury took the brief and picked the winners accordingly. Indirectly, as a result of this (and the award's global aspirations), there weren't a lot of winners in the room.** Even A Book of Horrors, with its elephantine shortlist presence (7 nominations!) wound up winning in only one category. For a society award, this is a oddly selfless selection of winners.

For the jury - well, they did their job, and they did it very well.*** But for the BFS, I suspect this will only further its continual existential crisis. Who is the award actually for? The society itself? Or an external population of readers? (For that matter, who is the society for? Is it composed of global readers or British literary professionals? Answering the second set of questions may help inform the first...)

Anyway, again - a very impressive list of winners. The BFS and its judges should be proud.**** And I look forward to the inevitable discussion and debate. That's the really fun part, after all...


*In the interests of transparency, I voted against it. A long story that has nothing to do with anything, really.

**Not even Woody Allen.

***Except Among Others, which, again, argh

****Well, 90% proud. See the footnote above.