The 2017 Australian SF Awards, aka the Ditmars, are open for nominations until midnight on the 19th of March 2017. Any eligible person – being anyone active in Australian SF, fantasy and/or horror fandom, or a member of the Natcon (Continuum 13) – can nominate works to appear on the shortlist in a range of categories. The winners will be voted on by members of the current or previous national SF convention.
(The rules are here, if you’re curious about whether you are eligible to nominate).
Works published in 2016 by an Australian author or artist are eligible to be nominated. I encourage anyone who qualifies as active in Australian fandom – the bar to entry is pretty low – to grab a copy of the online nomination form and submit their favourite works from last year.
If your memory is anything like mine, you won’t remember three-quarters of what you read last year, so luckily there is a handy list of (possibly) every work of fiction and piece of art eligible to be nominated: 2017 Ditmar eligibility list.
I won’t blow my own trumpet, except to note that stories of mine do appear on the list. What I will mention are some of the stories I read from last year I’d recommend:
Best Novel: The one qualifying novel I read was The Sleeping Life by Andrea K Host, but I also bought An Accident of Stars by Foz Meadows, The Grief Hole by Kaaron Warren, Squid’s Grief by D K Mok and Vigil by Angela Slatter in my to-read pile. If I read faster I might have a bigger range of choices.
Best Novella: I commend to your attention ‘A Strange Loop’ by T R Napper, ‘Forfeit’ by Andrea K Host, and ‘Unmagical Boy Story’ by Tansy Rayner Roberts. Can’t go wrong with any of those.
Best Short Story: There’s far too many to choose from but ‘A Strong Urge to Fly’ by Alan Baxter, ‘Breathing’ by Leife Shallcross, ‘Lust, Entrapment, and the Matter Transmitter: a Case Study’ by Sean Williams, ‘Of Sight, of Mind, of Heart’ by Samantha Murray, ‘Street Furniture’ by Jo Anderton, ‘The Baby Eaters’ by Ian McHugh, ‘The Doll Beautician’ by Kaaron Warren, ‘The Leaves No Longer Fall’ by Jodi Cleghorn, ‘The Planetary Survey’ by Tom Dullemond, and ‘Two Somebodies Go Hunting’ by Rivqa Rafael are all very good stories.
I’ll leave the other categories as an exercise for the reader – though I note that my mate Tim Napper is eligible for Best New Talent and he is a talented sonuvabitch so I guess I’ll probably vote for him).
Some quality choices here. TWO IN PARTICULAR. I suppose we’ll find about it all quite soon. Good luck for yours.
Some of the people on this list may also have appeared on my Hugo ballot. JUST SAYING. (Especially in case the subject comes up next time we meet for drinks)