Category Archives: Shout Outs

Times when our activities have been reported by others

Christchurch Word Festival – Events of Note

The Christchurch Word Festival is on August 25-29 this year.

Our attention has been drawn to two specfic items on the programme:

Speed Date a Speculative Fiction Author“, featuring Graci Kim, Cassie Hart, Sascha Stronach, and Karen Healey

The Stardust Cabaret“, including Sascha Stronach and AJ Fitzwater, with “star-stuff infused performances”

A huge shout-out to AJ Fitzwater for passing the information on to us. Not to mention being a guest curator for the event.

Library Interview with Lee Murray

Wellington City Libraries have written about their interview with award-winning NZ author Lee Murray. The online interview will debut on the 25th of July at 7.30 pm. You can read about the interview and other stuff about Lee on their Library Blog article. There is lots of good stuff there including info about other awards Lee is up for that we haven’t featured in our Awardwatch segment.

We feature Lee a lot on this blog. There is a simple reason for that- Lee has been doing so much great work. However we are sure she would be the first to agree with us that we want to celebrate all New Zealand’s talented voices and their own great work. So if you have anything to share with us, please drop us a line at sffanz.news@gmail.com. We don’t post about product (book) releases but anything else like launch events, readings, press articles etc are all good as long as there is a local connection and it is somehow sf/f/h related.

Awardwatch – 2021 Ngaio Marsh Awards

The Ngaio Marsh Awards are the New Zealand crime fiction award. Under normal circumstances we wouldn’t post their awards info, but have a look at the 2021 long list. Look at that first entry – The Stone Weta, by Octavia Cade (Paper Road Press). That very same work is on the Sir Julius Vogel Awards ballot.

Congratulations – Way to cross genres Octavia.

Awardwatch : Aurealis Awards

The 2020 Aurealis Awards were announced July 8 by the Continuum Foundation. The award recognizes the achievements of Australian science fiction, fantasy and horror writers.

Every time the Aurealis and Ditmar award winners are announced we trawl through the winners looking for expat Kiwis making good over the Tasman. Sometimes we don’t see any as is the case in this year’s Aurealis awards (awarded this year for work published last year). But then looking through the writer bios we see this phrase “I am a New Zealand-based writer…”. So yes, Nikky Lee was born is Western Australia but we can claim her – right? Especially as her name appears on the winners list twice!

Congratulations to Nikky and all the winners.

Awardwatch : Australian Shadows Awards

A few weeks back we highlighted how many Kiwis there were on the shortlist for the Australian Shadows Awards. Well now, the Australasian Horror Writers Association have announced the winners and I’m sure none of you will be surprised to see that New Zealanders feature there as well. So, huge congratulations to Tabatha and Lee (and of course all the other winners as well).

Awardwatch : 2020 Bram Stoker Awards Winners

Back in February we posted about the Bram Stoker Awards ballot. We highlighted Lee Murray appearing twice on that ballot.

Well guess what?! The final results are out and Lee has won in both categories she was nominated (Superior Achievement in a Fiction Collection and Superior Achievement in an Anthology). Congratulation Lee.

Awardwatch : 2020 Australian Shadows Awards finalists

The finalists for the 2020 Australian Shadows Awards have been announced. You can see the full list of finalists on their blog.

The thing is, as we have pointed out before, these awards are labelled “Australian” but they are awarded by the “Australasian” Horror Writers Association (the AHWA). And they are quite clear that this means New Zealand authors and works are eligible. So there should be lots of Kiwis on the ballot – and there are. You will find names such as Lee Murray, Dan Rabarts,Tabatha Wood and Cassie Hart on the list. And there are others who are Aussie based who qualify as Kiwis.

Congratulations to all the finalists – even the Aussies.

Awardwatch – The 2021 Hugo Awards

Kiwis on the Hugo ballot – that’s not something you get to write very often. Well never – not before today that is! DisCon III have announced the ballot for the 2021 Hugo awards (watch here or read here) and there are three names that stand out for locals…

Tamsyn Muir has been nominated in Best Novel for Harrow the Ninth.

Laya Rose has been nominated for Best Fan Artist.

Cassie Hart has been nominated for Best Related Work for CoNZealand Fringe.

As always, congratulations to all the finalists. The Hugo awards will be presented at DisCon III.

SFWA Names Sasha Stronach Guest Editor

Science Fiction and Fantasy Writers of America, Inc. (SFWA) announced today Kiwi author Sascha Stronach will be a The Bulletin guest editor in 2021. Stronach will guest edit Issue #218, slated for September 2021. (Canada based author Yilin Yang will be the other guest editor and edit #219.)

SFWA Editor-in-Chief Michi Trota said, “I’ve admired Sascha’s work in SF/F and am excited they’ll be bringing their unique visions and perspectives to shape their issues of The Bulletin.” Sacha won the 2020 Sir Julius Vogel Award for Best Novel.

Awardwatch : 2020 Bram Stoker Awards Ballot

The Horror Writers Association (HWA) have announced the finalists for the 2020 Bram Stoker Awards. The Bram Stoker Award winners will be announced in May during the Virtual StokerCon 2021 event.

Doing our usual search through looking for Kiwi connections, we again come across Lee Murray’s name on the ballot (twice!) – congratulations Lee.

You might wonder if we get bored by seeing the same few names keep cropping up on these major awards. Well, we really don’t – in the same way cricket fans never get bored seeing Kane Williamson score centuries. But we do still also want to see the next Kyle Jamieson, so if you spot any Kiwis getting recognised for any SF related activity (not just awards), then please drop us a line. We don’t know the names of all the local creatives, so we do need your help. There are a lot of awards out there – for example, perhaps somebody can run their eyes over the just announced Ursa Major Awards for us.

Recognition for Genre Authors Encouraging Young Writers

Check out this item in the forthcoming Focus Magazine. It gives hugely well deserved recognition to well known local SF/Fantasy authors Piper Mejia, Lee Murray, Jean Gilbert and the many other genre authors around NZ who have helped with their efforts in teaching and mentoring and publishing young students.

We looked, but couldn’t find this article, on the Focus web site – it will probably turn up there shortly.

Book Launch of Lee Murray and Dan Rabarts’ Blood of the Sun

There is an online book launch event at Tuesday, November 3, 2020 at 9pm. The details are on facebook. It is hosted by Terror Australis Readers and Writers Festival.

The event is a combined one to first celebrate the release of Joanna Beresford’s debut novel, Evey Year I am Here. This will then be followed by the launch of Lee Murray and Dan Rabarts’ Blood of the Sun – the third novel in their Path of Ra series.

The details are here – because it is a multinational event, it is best to double check when it is occurring in your timezone.

Also, just as an FYI to all you SF/F/H Kiwi authors out there. We don’t publicise the release of books (or other properties) per se, but we do like to hear about events. So if you are having a public launch event for your book (or reading or play or sculpture or whatever) then please drop us a line.

Awardwatch : Aurealis Awards

The Aurealis awards were presented in an online ceremony last night. Congratulations to all the winners. But as is our way, there has to be a Kiwi connection before we post, so special mention to Bren MacDibble for winning Best Childrens Fiction for The Dog Runner.

(If you really want to stretch a point, we also note that J.S. Breukelaar admits to a New Zealand component to her education – does that count?)

Awardwatch : Tamsyn Muir wins Locus Award

At the end of last month, we reported that Kiwi Tamsyn Muir had been shortlisted for the very prestigious Locus awards. Well now, the news is even better, the Locus Award winners have been announced and Tamsyn has won the Best First Novel category for her novel Gideon the Ninth. Congratulations to Tamsyn and all the winners. The award ceremony video is available online if you are interested.

Auckland 2020 Writers Festival – Winter Series

Recent QB Honours recipient Elizabeth Knox is scheduled to appear in this week’s episode of the Auckland 2020 Writers Festival – Winter Series. The episode is scheduled to debut live at 9-10am Sunday 7th June.

For context, as you, by now, are aware the 2020 Auckland Writers festival was cancelled. So now they are running a series of talks with authors – at least 2 of the scheduled festival authors in each weeks programme. This week will be the 6th of the series but the first to feature somebody with an sf/f/h connection. Have a look at the info page to see if you can spot any more – we noticed one really big name there.

Elizabeth Knox & Taika Waititi – Queen’s Birthday honours

Elizabeth Knox has been named a Companion of the New Zealand Order of Merit for services to literature in the Queen’s Birthday honours list announced today. We note that she describes her books as “literary non-realism”, but if you read them you will recognise science fiction and fantasy when you see it.

Taika Waititi picked up an ONZM in the same awards for services to film. He has been involved in many projects which fit in our genre description, although we note that the Stuff article about the awards fails to mention his role in the creation of what we here at SFFANZ news think is the best of them – Wellington Paranormal.

Awardwatch : 2020 Locus Awards

Tamsyn Muir has been shortlisted for the 2020 Locus Awards in the First Novel category for Gideon the Ninth. The locus awards are a big deal, so congratulations to Tamsyn and all the nominees.

So since Tamsyn lives in the UK, why are we highlighting her we don’t hear you asking. Well from her press kit, we see the following “She has spent the majority of her life in Howick, New Zealand, with time spent living in Waiuku and central Wellington.” That makes her properly Kiwi in our opinion.

Awardwatch : 2020 Australian Fairy Tale Society Award Nominees

The 2020 nominees for the “Australian Fairy Tale Society Annual Award for Inspiration and Contribution to Australian Fairy Tale Culture” have been released. As usual, we have looked through the list of nominees for this exclusively Australian award for New Zealanders.  Congratulations to Juliet Marillier for nabbing another Aussie nomination – I guess living there for a long time helps.

Awardwatch : The Hugo Finalists

The final ballot for The Hugo Awards was announced by CoNZealand this morning. This includes the 1945 Retro Hugos and the two “Not A Hugo” awards also on the ballot. You can view a replay of the live announcement over on YouTube or you can read the full list on the web site.

Of course we heartily congratulate everybody who has been nominated for what is probably our genre’s most prestigious award. However we wouldn’t be us without looking through the list to give a big shout out to any Kiwis there.

Tamsyn Muir has been nominated for Best Novel for her novel Gideon the Ninth. Although these days Tamsyn lives in the UK she identifies as a Kiwi having lived most of her life here.

Taika Waititi has been nominated for Best Dramatic Presentation, Short Form for The Mandalorian: “Redemption”. We don’t need to tell anybody who Taika Waititi is right?

Congratulations again and the very best of luck to these two and everybody in the running. The awards themselves are due to be presented at the virtual Worldcon ConZealand 29 May – 2 Aug.

Awardwatch : Lee Murray is HWA Mentor of the Year

Wow, this is the third time we have mentioned Lee Murray in the Awardwatch section so far this year. That isn’t bias on our part, but a genuine reflection of just how much Lee has been contributing to our genre community. This time, she has been honoured by the Horror Writers Association with their Mentor of the Year Award as part of their 2019 service awards. I’m sure you agree with us that this is a richly deserved award and congratulate her for her achievement.