The 2016 Aurealis Award shortlists were announced today. I am delighted and utterly dumbfounded that my story “The Lighthouse at Cape Defeat” is a finalist in the Best Fantasy Short Story category!
The Aurealis Awards are an annual award for Australian science fiction, fantasy and horror fiction (including children’s and YA works). Each category is judged by a panel of volunteers from the spec fic community, who pore over an enormous stack of eligible works to arrive at the shortlists and winners.
(Seriously, they read dozens of novels or hundreds of stories in their categories. All credit and awe for everyone who takes on such an amazing workload).
The winners will be announced at a ceremony at Swancon in Perth over the Easter weekend. Sadly I doubt I’ll be able to be there, but I’ll certainly be hanging off every tweet!
Congratulations and good luck to all the finalists. In particular I want to give a shout out to my many fellow Canberra Speculative Fiction Guild members for their various nominations: Alan Baxter (thrice!), Kaaron Warren (also thrice!), Ian McHugh, Tim Napper, Leife Shallcross, Shauna O’Meara, Simon Petrie, Tehani Wesselly, Elizabeth Fitzgerald and Felicity Banks. I’m proud to be in such dazzling company.
Late edit: OMG I should not have written that so late last night. I completely forgot to congratulate my friend Andrea Höst, whose novella “Forfeit” is a glorious, dazzling fantasy of masked balls, intrigue and complicated game design. Not to mention she’s one of the comparatively few authors flying the flag for self-published work in Australia, so it’s lovely to see her in the finals again.
“Lighthouse” appeared in Aurealis #89 (still available!) and I offer my sincere thanks and gratitude to publisher and editor Dirk Strasser for publishing the story, and to my writer friends Jodi Cleghorn, Tim Napper and Evan Dean for their help in knocking it into shape.
(I’ve almost certainly forgotten someone too – I’ve just discovered that I tossed out all my older notes from the CSFG short story critiquing group, and I honestly can’t remember who if anyone else read the early drafts! If I’ve neglected anyone in the specific, be it known I am more grateful than my feeble memory would suggest).
I’ll probably have more to say about this soon. An awards nomination is one of those milestone markers I talked about a while back, one that I honestly did not expect to come along so soon. For right now let’s just say I’ve spent the day in an inordinately excited state and now I’m running on post-adrenal fumes.
I do have one last thing to do, mind you: