Friday, March 20, 2009

Hugo Awards 2009: Short story winner, nominees & my rankings

Anticipation has posted this year's Hugo Award nominees. Fiction nominations apply to work originally published during the year 2008.
Update 10 August 2009: Winners announced.

Note: Short story is upto 7.5 thousand words, according to Hugo Award definition, with a 20% leeway at boundary.

Disclosure: Last year's short story, novelette, & novella official winners each happened to be the first on my rankings. In 2007, novella winner was my first preference, short story winner was my second preference, & novelette winner was my last choice! So you know I'm not the official oracle:)
Incidentally, 2007 novelette winner was a story about India, a subject where I usually have preferences very different from those of Western readers - probably because of familiarity.

I include the download links for stories I know are online. Link on author, editor, or publisher name yield more works from the source. Link on story title goes to my post on the story, if I have one. My rating is in brackets.

Short story nominees (5 stories, best first, unread last).

  1. [winner] Ted Chiang's "Exhalation" (A); download text/MP3; Jonathan Strahan (Ed)'s "Eclipse Two: New Science Fiction and Fantasy"; entropy: A "man"'s quest for knowledge in an unusual universe reveals something unexpected & alarming. Included in my best of the year 2008 list.
  2. Mike Resnick's "Article of Faith" (A); download; Jim Baen's Universe, #15 (October 2008); religion: A robot wants to be accepted as member of a church. Included in my best of the year 2008 list.
  3. [flash fiction] Mary Robinette Kowal's "Evil Robot Monkey" (B); download text/MP3; George Mann (Ed)'s "The Solaris Book of New Science Fiction, Volume 2": Uneasy life of an uplifted chimpanzee among the humans.
  4. Kij Johnson's "26 Monkeys, Also the Abyss" (B); download; Asimov's, July 2008; fantasy: A bunch of monkeys can vanish at will, & later return.
  5. Michael Swanwick's "From Babel's Fall'n Glory We Fled..."; download; Asimov's, February 2008: Not read & likely will not read. I just don't seem to have Swanwick recepters.


  1. Hugo Awards 2009: novelettes, novellas, novels.
  2. Other awards choosing "best of 2008" fiction: Nebula Awards 2008 (US); BSFA Awards 2008 (UK); Aurealis Awards 2008 (Australia); Prix Aurora 2009 (Canada).
  3. My "best of 2008" picks (includes links to more "best of 2008" lists, including various anthologies that collect last year's fiction).
  4. Last year's Hugos: short stories, novelettes, novellas.
  5. Hugo award fiction (includes past winners & nominees).
  6. Fiction by & about Hugo Gernsback, the man after whom Hugo Awards are named.
  7. "Best of" lists.