2016 Hugo Award winners

2016 Hugo Award winners

The Hugo Awards (named after Hugo Gernsbeck) are one of the most prestigious science fiction awards out there.

Past winners include Dune, The Man in the High Castle, and Stranger in a Strange Land.

There has been quite a bit of controversy in the last couple of years, as a couple of groups have made an effort to get the results that they want. That doesn’t sound like a bad thing, when I put it that way…but many people disagree with the apparent agenda of those groups.

The Hugo Awards have addressed this in part by having a “No Award” choice. Last year, it was a big impact…this year, not as much. It’s reasonable to conclude that the awards actually given this year do not align with the groups’ objectives.

I mention all this because the campaigns make some people question the legitimacy of the awards. That’s always true with awards, of course, but I would say that the Hugos certainly were an indicator of high quality for many geeks like me.

I was curious, so I checked: I’ve read most of the novel winners from the 1950s through the 1980s…not as much after that.

That doesn’t mean that I don’t consider those later novels worthy, not at all…I would say that it is more that I diversified my reading quite a bit.

If you are looking for a quality science fiction/fantasy read (or watch or  listen…they do more than  just literature), I think that using the Hugos is not a bad data point in making your decision.

Here are this year’s winners (awarded Saturday night, August 20th at MidAmeriCon II):

Best Novel

The Fifth Season (The Broken Earth Book 1) (at AmmazonSmile: benefit a non-profit of your choice by shopping*) by N.K. Jemisin

Best Novella

Binti by Nnedi Okorafor

Best Novelette

“Folding Beijing” by Hao Jingfang, trans. Ken Liu (Uncanny Magazine, Jan-Feb 2015)

Best Short Story

“Cat Pictures Please” by Naomi Kritzer (Clarkesworld, January 2015)

Best Related Work

No Award

Best Graphic Story

The Sandman: Overture written by Neil Gaiman, art by J.H. Williams III

Best Dramatic Presentation, Long Form

The Martian screenplay by Drew Goddard, directed by Ridley Scott (Scott Free Productions; Kinberg Genre; TSG Entertainment; 20th Century Fox)

Best Dramatic Presentation, Short Form

Jessica Jones: “AKA Smile” written by Scott Reynolds, Melissa Rosenberg, and Jamie King, directed by Michael Rymer (Marvel Television; ABC Studios; Tall Girls Productions;Netflix)

Best Editor, Short Form

Ellen Datlow

Best Editor, Long Form

Sheila E. Gilbert

Best Professional Artist

Abigail Larson

Best Semiprozine

Uncanny Magazine edited by Lynne M. Thomas & Michael Damian Thomas, Michi Trota, and Erika Ensign & Steven Schapansky

Best Fanzine

File 770 edited by Mike Glyer

Best Fancast

No Award

Best Fan Writer

Mike Glyer

Best Fan Artist

Steve Stiles

The John W. Campbell Award for Best New Writer (not technically a Hugo)

Andy Weir

Congratulations to the winners!

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* I am linking to the same thing at the regular Amazon site, and at AmazonSmile. When you shop at AmazonSmile, half a percent of your purchase price on eligible items goes to a non-profit you choose. It will feel just like shopping at Amazon: you’ll be using your same account. The one thing for you that is different is that you pick a non-profit the first time you go (which you can change whenever you want)…and the good feeling you’ll get. :) Shop ’til you help! :) By the way, it’s been interesting lately to see Amazon remind me to “start at AmazonSmile” if I check a link on the original Amazon site. I do buy from AmazonSmile, but I have a lot of stored links I use to check for things.


4 Responses to “2016 Hugo Award winners”

  1. Edward Boyhan Says:

    Well, this only confirms what I said a few days ago. Other than “The Martian” award, I didn’t recognize any of the winners! (and I read a LOT of SF — just not what the con-going fans read I guess) 🐼

    For a long time I’ve felt that the Nebulas (which are decided by working SF authors) are a more useful award. To me the Hugo’s have become the SF version of “The People’s Choice Awards” 😀

    • Bufo Calvin Says:

      Thanks for writing, Edward!

      Certainly, the two awards have different characters…and yet, some works have won both. 🙂

  2. Scotto Says:

    I’ve read half of the nominated novels and the description for the winner looks pretty good. I’ve been reading SF since the 60’s and I find that it’s useful to discover new young authors via the Hugos and magazines. I currently subscribe to Asimov’s and Clarkesworld on my Kindle and am continually pleased when they drop and enjoy most of the content ( I don’t like sword and sorcery or poems).

    I still enjoy the old school authors but the new fiction from woman and overseas authors always amazes and entertains me. The new blood and diversity is refreshing. I find the “Sad Puppy” fiction either revolting for it’s author’s bigotry or just plain cliched. How many BSG ripoffs with gallant survivors of alien invasions saving the human race do we need anyway?

    I’ve been reading the second half of Robert Heinlein’s biography and it’s illuminating how much petty politicking went on even back in the 50’s and 60’s. The Hugos survived that and will survive the narrow-minded bigotry of the Sad/Rabid Puppies.

    • Bufo Calvin Says:

      Thanks for writing, Scotto!

      Sounds like we’ve been reading SF for about the same amount of time. 🙂 I like a broad range of things, including poetry and sword and sorcery…and hard SF, and space opera, and… 😉

      I’ve always enjoyed non-American geek-friendly works, although I’ve read it in translation. One fascinating example was the Russian Oz series by Alexander Volkov…many Russians apparently read it not being familiar with L. Frank Baum’s versions during the Cold War era. The powder of life, very important in both series, came from a different source in the Russian versions: someone trying to get rid of weeds that were so hard to kill, they granted life to other objects! Having read a fair amount of literature, I find that to be a particularly Russian perspective on that specific bit of magic.

      Funny to think of things as Battlestar Galactica inspired-works…when we originally considered BSG (the first version) to be inspired by Star Wars. 🙂 There was, of course, even a legal battle over the similarities:


      I agree, the Hugos will survive. This year, there was much less of an impact from those campaigns than there was in 2015…

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