2014 Hugo Noms!

written by David Steffen

It’s award season again! If you’re eligible to vote for the Hugos, you have until the end of March to decide on your picks. I wanted to share my picks, as I always do, in plenty of time so that if anyone wants to investigate my choices to see for themselves they’ll have plenty of time.

Quite a few of the categories I don’t have anything to nominate because I don’t seek out entries in them, so I left those out. And for any category that I have eligible work I mentioned them alongside my own picks.

The entries in each category are listed in no particular order.

Best Novel

Ancillary Justice by Ann Leckie
Premier novel by Leckie. Great premise, difficult point of view, great space opera. I reviewed it here.

A Memory of Light by Robert Jordan and Brandon Sanderson
The 14th and final book of Jordan’s epic Wheel of Time series.


Best Novelette

Monday’s Monk by Jason Sanford (Asimov’s)

Best Short Story

The Promise of Space by James Patrick Kelly (Clarkesworld)

The Murmurous Paleoscope by Dixon Chance (Three-Lobed Burning Eye)

HELP FUND MY ROBOT ARMY!!! by Keffy R.M. Kehrli (Lightspeed)

Hollow as the World by Ferrett Steinmetz (Drabblecast)

The Boy and the Box by Adam-Troy Castro (Lightspeed)

For Your Consideration:
I Will Remain in After Death Anthology
Could They But Speak at Perihelion
Reckoning at Stupefying Stories
Meat at Pseudopod
Coin Op at Daily Science Fiction
Escalation at Imaginaire

Best Dramatic Presentation (Long Form)

Ender’s Game

Warm Bodies

Game of Thrones Season 3


Best Dramatic Presentation (Short Form)

The Rains of Castamere (Game of Thrones)

And Now His Watch Has Ended (Game of Thrones)

Walk of Punishment (Game of Thrones)

Second Sons (Game of Thrones)

Valar Doheris (Game of Thrones)


Best Editor (Short Form)

Neil Clarke (of Clarkesworld)

John Joseph Adams (of Lightspeed, Nightmare, and anthologies)

Tina Connolly (of Toasted Cake)

Norm Sherman (of Drabblecast and Escape Pod)

Shawn Garrett (of Pseudopod)


Best Semiprozine

Beneath Ceaseless Skies

Daily Science Fiction


Escape Pod


Best Fanzine

SF Signal

My work for you to consider:
Diabolical Plots
I do consider Diabolical Plots a zine. Consider, too, that this was the first year Diabolical Plots also provide the Submission Grinder. The Submission Grinder itself doesn’t fit any of the categories, I think, but Diabolical Plots does.


Best Fancast

Toasted Cake




Cast of Wonders


Best Fan Writer

Ken Liu

Ferrett Steinmetz

Juliette Wade

Cat Rambo

Anne Ivy

For your consideration:

David Steffen
Frank Dutkiewicz
Carl Slaughter


The Best of Pseudopod 2013

written by David Steffen

Another year, another round of Best Of lists.

Pseudopod, and the other Escape Artists casts had a bit of a crisis to overcome this year–they realized that although they had a great listenership, only 1% of the listeners donated, and it wasn’t enough to keep the publications afloat. The good news is that when they revealed this there was a strong reaction to add subscriptions–if you read this and you like the cast, consider adding a subscription.

And I thought this was another strong year for Pseudopod, and I’m not just saying that because two of my own stories were published during the year. Since I don’t consider my own stories for Best Of lists, I’ll just mention them briefly here. “Meat” is the story of a domestic housebot doing the best he can under difficult circumstances. “Helpers” is a special dark Christmas episode.

Pseudopod published 58 stories in 2013, of which these are my personal favorites.

The List

1. Neighborhood Watch by Greg Egan
Point of view of a monster summoned by the leaders of a suburban neighborhood to make it prey on only the wrong kind of person for the neighborhood. Not very many monsters come off as original, but this one was done extraordinarily well and the narration of Ron Jon Newton really made it even better.

2. The Murmurous Paleoscope by Dixon Chance
A lot of steampunk stories seem like the steampunk elements are just set dressing, goggles and gears without any real consideration for how the world would have to be different to make this environment. This is the story of a female archaeologist during a time period when archaeology digs were viciously competitive. Each side has its own steampunk gadgets to use in its work, and it really gets interesting when they find something in the dig.

3. Bunraku by David X. Wiggin
This story is about an incredibly lifelike puppet, which in the hands of its creator the master puppeteer attracts the love of a man. The puppeteer and the man work out a bargain to allow the man to continue his romance with the puppet. Ugghhh, yeah creepy.

4. Cell Call by Marc Laidlaw
The protagonist of this story takes a wrong turn on his way home, and ends up somewhere just sideways of normality. He’s on the phone with his wife, his only connection to his regular life.

5. Cry Room by Ted Kosmatka
You know how in some churches, they have a separate room for parents to take their crying babies? What happens to the kids who are too noisy for the cry room? Oh, you didn’t notice the door in the back?

6. Boxed by Donald McCarthy
What would you do if you had a magic box which had the ability to wipe away any memory you chose?


Honorable Mentions

The Night Wire by H.F. Arnold

FootSteps Invisible by Robert A. Arthur Jr.

The Bungalow House by Thomas Ligotti