2008 Hugo Nomination List

Okay. Here’s the thing. The 2008 Hugo Nomination List was sent out to a whole bunch of us, with an embargo of noon Pacific time, but Denvention 3 — at which the Hugos will be awarded — has posted the list on its own site and linked to it several places, including its own front page; the list has also been linked to by Locus on its Web site.

I call shenanigans on the embargo. Denvention 3 can’t ask for an embargo on information it’s already made publicly accessible. Locus has also broken the embargo by linking to the list. If someone who was not told there was an embargo happened across the information, say, by reading it on the Locus site, they could quite easily post the list and discuss it to their heart’s desire. Which is, in fact, already happening.

That being the case, the 2008 Hugo Award Nomination List, for your delight and edification.

(Update, 8am: Mary Kay Kare, the excellent Hugo coordinator for Denvention 3, notes in the comments: “the embargo was broken by someone else last night and so Denvention went ahead and posted it to their web page.” She did indeed note to to me in e-mail after I posted this; I’m glad she also noted it in the comments since I don’t generally post private e-mail. And of course this explains a lot — it’s hard to re-bag the cats once they’ve escaped to the Internet.)

Best Novel

The Yiddish Policeman’s Union by Michael Chabon (HarperCollins, Fourth Estate)
Brasyl by Ian McDonald (Gollancz; Pyr)
Rollback by Robert J. Sawyer (Tor; Analog Oct. 2006-Jan/Feb. 2007)
The Last Colony by John Scalzi (Tor)
Halting State by Charles Stross (Ace; Orbit)

Best Novella

“Fountains of Age” by Nancy Kress (Asimov’s July 2007)
“Recovering Apollo 8” by Kristine Kathryn Rusch (Asimov’s Feb. 2007)
“Stars Seen Through Stone” by Lucius Shepard (F&SF July 2007)
“All Seated on the Ground” by Connie Willis (Asimov’s Dec. 2007; Subterranean Press)
“Memorare” by Gene Wolfe (F&SF April 2007)

Best Novelette

“The Cambist and Lord Iron: a Fairytale of Economics” by Daniel Abraham (Logorrhea ed. by John Klima, Bantam)
“The Merchant and the Alchemist’s Gate” by Ted Chiang (F&SF Sept. 2007)
“Dark Integers” by Greg Egan (Asimov’s Oct./Nov. 2007)
“Glory” by Greg Egan (The New Space Opera, ed. by Gardner Dozois and Jonathan Strahan, HarperCollins/Eos)
“Finisterra” by David Moles (F&SF Dec. 2007)

Best Short Story

“Last Contact” by Stephen Baxter (The Solaris Book of New Science Fiction, ed. by George Mann, Solaris Books)
“Tideline” by Elizabeth Bear (Asimov’s June 2007)
“Who’s Afraid of Wolf 359?” by Ken MacLeod (The New Space Opera, ed. by Gardner Dozois and Jonathan Strahan, HarperCollins/Eos)
“Distant Replay” by Mike Resnick (Asimov’s May-June 2007)
“A Small Room in Koboldtown” by Michael Swanwick (Asimov’s April/May 2007; The Dog Said Bow-Wow,Tachyon Publications)

Best Related Book

The Company They Keep: C.S. Lewis and J.R.R. Tolkien as Writers in Community by Diana Glyer; appendix by David Bratman (Kent State University Press)
Breakfast in the Ruins: Science Fiction in the Last Millennium by Barry Malzberg (Baen)
Emshwiller: Infinity x Two by Luis Ortiz, intro. by Carol Emshwiller, fwd. by Alex Eisenstein (Nonstop)
Brave New Words: the Oxford Dictionary of Science Fiction by Jeff Prucher (Oxford University Press)
The Arrival by Shaun Tan (Arthur A. Levine/Scholastic)

Best Dramatic Presentation, Long Form

Enchanted Written by Bill Kelly, Directed by Kevin Lima (Walt Disney Pictures)
The Golden Compass Written by Chris Weitz, Based on the novel by Philip Pullman, Directed by Chris Weitz (New Line Cinema)
Heroes, Season 1, Created by Tim Kring (NBC Universal Television and Tailwind Productions Written by Tim Kring, Jeff Loeb, Bryan Fuller, Michael Green, Natalie Chaidez, Jesse Alexander, Adam Armus, Aron Eli Coleite, Joe Pokaski, Christopher Zatta, Chuck Kim, Directed by David Semel, Allan Arkush, Greg Beeman, Ernest R. Dickerson, Paul Shapiro, Donna Deitch, Paul A. Edwards, John Badham, Terrence O’Hara, Jeannot Szwarc, Roxann Dawson, Kevin Bray, Adam Kane
Harry Potter and the Order of the Phoenix Written by Michael Goldenberg, Based on the novel by J.K. Rowling, Directed by David Yates (Warner Bros. Pictures)
Stardust Written by Jane Goldman & Matthew Vaughn, Based on the novel by Neil Gaiman, Directed by Matthew Vaughn (Paramount Pictures)

Best Dramatic Presentation, Short Form

Battlestar Galactica “Razor” written by Michael Taylor, directed by Félix Enríquez Alcalá and Wayne Rose (Sci Fi Channel) (televised version, not DVD)
Doctor Who “Blink” written by Stephen Moffat, directed by Hettie Macdonald (BBC)
Doctor Who “Human Nature” / “The Family of Blood” written by Paul Cornell, directed by Charles Palmer (BBC)
Star Trek New Voyages “World Enough and Time” written by Michael Reaves & Marc Scott Zicree, directed by Marc Scott Zicree (Cawley Entertainment Co. and The Magic Time Co.)
Torchwood “Captain Jack Harkness” written by Catherine Tregenna, directed by Ashley Way (BBC Wales)

Best Professional Editor, Short Form

Ellen Datlow (The Year’s Best Fantasy and Horror (St. Martin’s), Coyote Road (Viking), Inferno (Tor))
Stanley Schmidt (Analog)
Jonathan Strahan (The New Space Opera (Eos/HarperCollins), The Best Science Fiction and Fantasy of the Year, Volume 1 (Night Shade), Eclipse One (NightShade)
Gordon Van Gelder (The Magazine of Fantasy and Science Fiction)
Sheila Williams (Asimov’s Science Fiction)

Best Professional Editor, Long Form

Lou Anders (Pyr)
Ginjer Buchanan (Ace/Roc)
David G. Hartwell (Tor/Forge)
Beth Meacham (Tor)
Patrick Nielsen Hayden (Tor)

Best Professional Artist

Bob Eggleton (Covers: To Outlive Eternity and Other Stories (Baen), Ivory (Pyr), & The Taint and Other Stories (Subterranean))
Phil Foglio (Covers: Robert Asprin’s Myth Adventures, Vol. 2 (Meisha Merlin), “What’s New” (Dragon Magazine Aug. 2007), Girl Genius Vol. 6-Agatha Heterodyne & the Golden Trilobite (Airship Entertainment))
John Harris (Covers: Spindrift (Ace), Horizons (Tor), The Last Colony (Tor))
Stephan Martiniere (Covers: Brasyl (Pyr), Mainspring (Tor), The Dragons of Babel (Tor))
John Picacio (Covers: Fast Forward 2 (Pyr), Time’s Child (HarperCollins/Eos), A Thousand Deaths (Golden Gryphon))
Shaun Tan

Best Semiprozine

Ansible edited by David Langford
Helix edited by William Sanders and Lawrence Watt-Evans
Interzone edited by Andy Cox
Locus edited by Charles N. Brown, Kirsten Gong-Wong, & Liza Groen Trombi
The New York Review of Science Fiction, edited by Kathryn Cramer, Kristine Dikeman, David Hartwell & Kevin J. Maroney

Best Fanzine

Argentus edited by Steven H Silver
Challenger edited by Guy Lillian III
Drink Tank edited by Chris Garcia
File 770 edited by Mike Glyer
PLOKTA edited by Alison Scott, Steve Davies, & Mike Scott

Best Fan Writer

Chris Garcia
David Langford
Cheryl Morgan
John Scalzi
Steven H Silver

Best Fan Artist

Brad Foster
Teddy Harvia
Sue Mason
Steve Stiles
Taral Wayne

John W. Campbell Award for Best New Writer

An award for the best new writer whose first work of science fiction or fantasy appeared during 2006 or 2007 in a professional publication. Sponsored by Dell Magazines.

Joe Abercrombie (2nd year of eligibility)
Jon Armstrong (1st year of eligibility)
David Anthony Durham (1st year of eligibility)
David Louis Edelman (2nd year of eligibility)
Mary Robinette Kowal (2nd year of eligibility)
Scott Lynch (2nd year of eligibility)

I’ll be posting thoughts on the list sometime soon.

Congratulations to all the nominees!

38 Comments on “2008 Hugo Nomination List”

  1. Fifth nomination in a row for Charles Stross. I did not read Halting State yet (nor any of the other nominee: buying only paperback I read everything with a significant delay), so I can’t vouch on its quality, but will 2008 be the year he finally win the Award?

  2. I think it’s a possibility, and I would be delighted for Charlie, although I have reasons to hope for a different outcome.

  3. In the Novella category the competition strikes me as fierce…

    Having read all five I have a least favorite among them yet the other four are in the Wow! category. I’m glad not to have a vote on those…

  4. Way to go, John! (On the nomination, not the embargo-busting journalism quandry.)

    I’m glad to see Last Colony in there. For me, it was your best book to date. You got the dialog sequences just right.

  5. I’m glad that “Glory” by Greg Egan is there. It is the best Novelette I’ve read in years.

  6. As I just explained to John in email, the embargo was broken by someone else last night and so Denvention went ahead and posted it to their web page. It’d be kind of nice if he added that explanation to the commentary.


  7. Hmm… Guess it’s off to the library time for me.
    Rollback – out in paperback
    Yiddish Policeman’s Union – due out 4/29
    Brasyl – due out 5/3
    Halting State – due out 6/24 (cutting it close)
    The Last Colony – due out 7/29 (after ballots due)

    Only one of the novels is out in paperback so far, one coming end of April, one early May, but the other 2 won’t be available until too close to Denvention3 for me to have time to read before the ballot is due.

    John, you need to plan better than this (or send me a copy to read).

  8. Kerry, I will almost certainly be making an electronic copy available to Hugo voters, just like I did when Old Man’s War was nominated.

  9. Yeah, when Mary Kay and I saw the problem last night, we started exchanging E-mails. Because once something hits the Web, especially the blogosphere/LJ side of the universe, it’s pretty much impossible to call it back (though the person who started the problem did take it down, it had already hit two other LJs I read and who knows how many LJs I don’t).

    I felt it was probably better to get our official announcement out a little early, rather than pretend that cat wasn’t already out of the bag.

    We now have a quick-print list (someone noted that PHP page does not print gracefully), the ballots will be up shortly and I will start to publish links to any Hugo materials that are online. Just send them to me (webmaster@denvention.org) – we can host any Hugo nominated works at the Denvention site if you don’t have the space to do so on your site.

    Laurie Mann
    Denvention Webmaster

  10. As usual, I have read pretty much nothing on the list. Two and a half of the best novel list (Rollback, The Last Colony, and half of Yiddish Policemen’s Union), nothing on the other lists. And I have seen all of Heroes season 1. I liked it a lot. Also really liked Rollback and Last Colony. Didn’t like Yiddish Policemen’s Union, in spite of very much liking other Chabon novels.

  11. Is it uncommon for a single continuity to have more than half the nominations in the short dramatic category?

  12. As an artist, I’m delighted to see the covers of the professional artists being listed. Is this one of the changes that Donato Giancola and Irene Gallo have been pushing for? (I’ve never seen that before on the listing, so I am assuming it is new, but feel free to correct me.) Anyway, I think it’s great because it allows artists to be judged on their year’s output as opposed to a strong career. (I mean, I think Michael Whelan, for example, is a very talented artist, but it felt like there was a period of time where he was nominated just for being Michael Whelan. I’m delighted to see other artists such as Stephen Martiniere popping up now.)

  13. Pixelfish @21: Yes, this is new, and is a consequence of the changes you mention. It takes a while for things to actually happen with the Hugo Awards because changes to the system take a minimum of two years to move through the legislative process, and then they don’t take effect until the year after that.

  14. The word “embargo” is interesting in this case. Is it standard usage?

    I usually think of an embargo as preventing something from coming in, not out, but I see that it may be used for either case.

  15. @ 15: Thanks, John, but I find it very difficult to curl up under the covers with my computer. I will go to the library. (Of course, if I had known last weekend, I could have stopped at your house on the way back from Millennicon and borrowed one.)

  16. Tripp @23:

    The Wikipedia article on the subject explains the practice in more detail. In particular, if you’ve ever seen a press release with FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE at the top, it’s because the information is not embargoed.

    Because WSFS rules require Hugo Award administrators to give nominees a reasonable opportunity to decline nomination, the nominations have to be embargoed. Unfortunately, this usually results in at least some of the information leaking out in lower- or higher-profile ways every year. The specifics of any particular leak aren’t really that important; the overall process just isn’t foolproof, and probably cannot be made so. Even people with good intentions can goof. (Ever accidentally respond to an entire mailing list when you meant to just respond to an individual?)

  17. I’m really glad to see the “Doctor Who” episode “Blink” get nominated. It was the best hour of television — regardless of genre — that I’ve seen in years. Literally breathtaking, “I can’t believe they pulled that off” stuff.

  18. Hm. Still contending for the Dave Langford award for best Dave Langford, I see?

    You could always change your name. Might help.

  19. Congratulations! So why have the scheduled release for noon on Good Friday? Was their actual fear of getting outside coverage and needing to quash that?

  20. The longest Wikipedia edit I’ve ever yet made was to the Last Colony entry just now: “It was nominated for a 2008 Hugo Award in the Best Novel category.” What a happy sentence to type.

  21. Go John! Go PNH! Go Neil! Heck, go Phil Foglio, whom I lurve!

    So much to read, so little time… I need to renew my library card, before Teh Husbandness catches me buying more books. Ahem!

  22. No. 29 — We left nominations open as long as possible because we think it’s better that way. Then we had to finish the counting. The nomination ballots are all free text fields and have to be handled by humans and it takes *way* longer than you could possibly imagine. We finished counting on Mar. 16. Then I’m required to notify all the nominees and give them a chance to accept or decline. And people *will* insist on traveling and not answering their email. And people do actually decline. I gave them a week this time and by March 16 all but 2 people had responded. I spent much more time than you’d think putting together the final ballot and then nearly as much time getting it to fit in 4 pages. Then it went off to the proofreaders. The last of the proofreaders got back to me on Thursday morning. I incorporated the corrections and some of the suggested changes and sent out the press releases and mailed the ballot copy to the web person and the progress report person. And voila it’s nearly Friday. I knew this would be my schedule well ahead of time.

    Good Friday is actually an excellent time to release the list. There are a number of large and excellent sf conventions Easter weekend and it helps create good buzz.


  23. 34:Hi Mary Kay,

    You are to be commended on the amount of work you put in this. You have far more patients than I would under the circumstances.

    Good Friday is actually an excellent time to release the list. There are a number of large and excellent sf conventions Easter weekend and it helps create good buzz.

    If the award is solely to allow the community to congratulate some of its own then that’s fine but if it’s trying to also create buzz outside of the community then releasing it on Good Friday is unfortunate.

    I’m not saying that releasing it on an average weekday would cause massive amounts of coverage in the MSM but it it could help. After all some of the books nominated could act as a gateway into f/sf.

    Non-sf/f reder. “Hey look The Yiddish Policeman’s Union is up for a “Hugo” I loved that book. Hmmm I should try some others on the list.”

    We are being told that the genre is contracting, fewer Magazine subscriptions,the graying of the community etc. We need to take every opportunity to expand it and bring in new people.

  24. jmnlman @36:

    If you really think that announcing on a non-holiday weekday would make a significant difference, then the only alternative open to the administrator would have been to hold on to the information through Easter and not publish until next week. While maybe that would have got a tiny bit of additional coverage in the mainstream press (not much, I suspect), it would have done so at the expense of our own community. Besides, as Mary Kay rightly pointed out, Easter is convention-heavy. Besides events in the USA like Norwescon (where I am; Mary Kay also happens to be attending) and Minicon and ICFA, there’s also Swancon in Australia (which is also this year’s Australian NatCon), and the British NatCon, Eastercon.

    On a “cons around the world” weekend like this, it would be flat-out cruel to the nominees to insist that they keep quiet about their nominations, and impossible to enforce anyway. So the Administrator is doing the right thing.

    Meanwhile, this year’s Hugo Administration Subcommittee is also working with the WSFS Hugo Awards Marketing Committee to broaden the distribution of the nominations to a wider, more mainstream audience. The news will get to those sources over the next few days. (Indeed, the press release may not have even got out to them yet; I’m not the person doing the work. You may well get your “non-holiday weekday” press release.) Whether they decide to use it is a different matter. Getting the mainstream press interested in our field is challenging, and sending out announcements next Tuesday probably wouldn’t make much difference.

  25. 37:Kevin Standlee

    Yes it would have been impossible to hold the list for any while longer it did leak after all. There is a reason why governments and businesses release bad news late on Fridays or before long weekends. I do think they’re giving up some coverage by releasing on Good Friday. Very possibly not a lot but every little bit helps.

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