The Electronic Frontier Foundation has opened the nominations for the 2014 Pioneer Award, which celebrates people who have contributed substantially to the health, growth, accessibility, or freedom of computer-based communications. Anyone can nominate, and the winners will be chosen by an independent and august jury. I am enduringly proud to have received the Pioneer Award, along with such luminaries as Limor "Lady Ada" Fried, Bruce Shneier, Bunnie Huang and Aaron Swartz.
I was a judge on this year's Science Seeker Awards, which honor great science writing being done online. The winners were just announced and you should really check out the whole list. It's full of great writing, including some names and blogs you've probably never read before.
I also want to draw your attention to a runner-up post that made a big impact on me. It's a piece by Jalees Rehman about what happens when scientists (and science journalists) settle for easy work and quick rewards instead of pushing themselves. The post introduced me to the concept of der innere Schweinehund, aka "the inner swine-dog", a fantastic German metaphor for the part of ourselves that prefers laziness over productivity, comfort over challenge, and routine over achievement. Everything is a battle against our own inner swine dog. It's a terribly German way of looking at things, but it resonated with me — and will probably resonate with anyone who has ever had to decide between checking Facebook and finishing an important task.
More importantly, reading about it in the midst of judging some really good science writing reminded me of how important that daily battle is. These Science Seeker Award Winning stories will educate you, scratch your itch for curiosity, and help you question your world. Those are incredibly important goals, and the only way we reach them is by fighting off the inner swine-dog.
There is a statue of the Innere Schweinehund in Bonn. Norbert Schnitzler took this photo of it for Wikimedia Commons.
Every year, the Hollywood Foreign Press Association announces its nominees for the Golden Globe Awards, the junior prom that takes place in the high school gym to the Academy Awards' senior prom that takes place in a fancy banquet hall. And every year, there is something to be annoyed or confused about. This year is no exception, especially in the television categories, unless you think Best Comedy or Musical nominee Smash is a better show than Community or Veep, and Best Drama nominee The Newsroom was better than Mad Men. (Even though both Mad Men and The Walking Dead were pretty inconsistent last season, despite some truly golden moments. Cheers, non-nominee Jared Harris.) At least the movie categories were a little easier to stomach. Top nominees this year: Lincoln, Django Unchained, and Argo. Read the full list of nominees at the official site of the Golden Globes, which will air Sunday, January 13 at 8:00 PM (Eastern) on NBC. (via The Golden Globes)
Nominations are open for the Electronic Frontier Foundation's annual Pioneer Awards, which are given out "to recognize leaders on the electronic frontier who are extending freedom and innovation in the realm of information technology." The nominations are open to the general public until August 6.
What does it take to be a Pioneer? There are no specific categories, but nominees must have contributed substantially to the health, growth, accessibility, or freedom of computer-based communications. Their contributions may be technical, social, legal, academic, economic or cultural. This year’s pioneers will join an esteemed group of past award winners that includes World Wide Web inventor Tim Berners-Lee, security expert Bruce Schneier, open source advocate Mozilla Foundation, and privacy rights activist Beth Givens.
I was privileged to receive the Pioneer Award in 2007, an honor that remains one of my proudest.
Last night saw the announcement of the 2012 nominees for science fiction's prestigious Hugo Award. It's a particularly fine ballot, reflecting a record number of nominating ballots (wisdom of the crowds and all that). Included on the ballot are our own moderator Avram (as part of the team that publishes The New York Review of Science Fiction) and one of my all-time favorite books, Among Others. Also noteworthy: the much-deserved John W Campbell Award nomination (for best new writer) for the fabulous Mur Lafferty, a nomination for the indispensable Science Fiction Encyclopedia, Third Edition, a nomination for IO9's Charlie Jane Anders's story Six Months, Three Days, and a fourth nomination for much-favored Fables graphic novels.
Best Novel (932 ballots)
Among Others by Jo Walton (Tor)
A Dance With Dragons by George R. R. Martin (Bantam Spectra)
Deadline by Mira Grant (Orbit)
Embassytown by China Miéville (Macmillan / Del Rey)
Leviathan Wakes by James S. A. Corey (Orbit)
Best Novella (473 ballots)
Countdown by Mira Grant (Orbit)
“The Ice Owl” by Carolyn Ives Gilman (The Magazine of Fantasy & Science Fiction November/December 2011)
“Kiss Me Twice” by Mary Robinette Kowal (Asimov's June 2011)
“The Man Who Bridged the Mist” by Kij Johnson (Asimov's September/October 2011)
“The Man Who Ended History: A Documentary” by Ken Liu (Panverse 3)
Silently and Very Fast by Catherynne M. Valente (WSFA)
Best Novelette (499 ballots)
“The Copenhagen Interpretation” by Paul Cornell (Asimov's July 2011)
“Fields of Gold” by Rachel Swirsky (Eclipse Four)
“Ray of Light” by Brad R. Torgersen (Analog December 2011)
“Six Months, Three Days” by Charlie Jane Anders (Tor.com)
“What We Found” by Geoff Ryman (The Magazine of Fantasy & Science Fiction March/April 2011)
Best Short Story (593 ballots)
“The Cartographer Wasps and the Anarchist Bees” by E. Lily Yu (Clarkesworld April 2011)
“The Homecoming” by Mike Resnick (Asimov's April/May 2011)
“Movement” by Nancy Fulda (Asimov's March 2011)
“The Paper Menagerie” by Ken Liu (The Magazine of Fantasy & Science Fiction March/April 2011)
“Shadow War of the Night Dragons: Book One: The Dead City: Prologue” by John Scalzi (Tor.com)
The Science Fiction Writers of America have announced the nominees for the 2011 Nebula Awards, which are voted by the community of professional sf/f writers (in contrast to the Hugo awards, which are voted by readers). It's a very strong ballot, and includes two of my favorite books of 2011: Jo Walton's astounding Among Others, and Delia Sherman's brilliant YA novel The Freedom Maze.
Among Others, Jo Walton (Tor)
Embassytown, China Miéville (Macmillan UK; Del Rey; Subterranean Press)
Firebird, Jack McDevitt (Ace Books)
God's War, Kameron Hurley (Night Shade Books)
Mechanique: A Tale of the Circus Tresaulti, Genevieve Valentine (Prime Books)
The Kingdom of Gods, N.K. Jemisin (Orbit US; Orbit UK)
"Kiss Me Twice," Mary Robinette Kowal (Asimov's Science Fiction, June 2011)
"Silently and Very Fast," Catherynne M. Valente (WFSA Press; Clarkesworld Magazine, October 2011)
"The Ice Owl," Carolyn Ives Gilman (The Magazine of Fantasy and Science Fiction, November/December 2011)
"The Man Who Bridged the Mist," Kij Johnson (Asimov's Science Fiction, October/November 2011)
"The Man Who Ended History: A Documentary," Ken Liu (Panverse Three, Panverse Publishing)
"With Unclean Hands," Adam-Troy Castro (Analog Science Fiction and Fact, November 2011)
Read the rest
I'm reaching out from Vimeo where we are currently working on the Vimeo Festival + Awards, which is happening in June in New York. The festival is a series of workshops, panels, conversations, screenings and parties to celebrate the dynamic and exciting work that is being created by filmmakers, and also to educate and inspire beginners to get out and make incredible films. Categories include Motion Graphics, Captured, Lyrical, Narrative and many more.
We are under a week away from closing our submissions (deadline is 20th Feb) so shouting out to ensure filmmakers are aware of the awards. All the information we've released so far is up at at www.vimeo.com/awards and you can follow our news via Twitter @Vimeo and @VimeoFestAwards.
We recently announced new judges which include James Franco, Nick Knight and Colin Greenwood (Radiohead bassist) with more to come, so it's worth keeping an eye on that too!
There's a $25,000 grand prize, and $5,000 category prizes.
Science Fiction Writers of America President John Scalzi writes, "The Science Fiction and Fantasy Writers of America has named Connie Willis, one of the most-awarded and beloved science fiction writers of her generation, as its 2011 recipient of the Damon Knight Memorial Grand Master Award. Congratulations Connie!"
“When I heard that Connie was going to be named a Grand Master, I was surprised, because I assumed she’d long since been given the honor. It’s overdue and well deserved – congratulations, Connie, and welcome to the club.” –Joe Haldeman, 2010 Grand Master
“My most treasured childhood possession is Terry Carr’s 1984 Year’s Best Science Fiction anthology, not least because it contains Connie Willis’s “Blued Moon”. Her writing changed my understanding of what SF is and what it can be: funny, poignant, wise, feminist. And then I read “All My Darling Daughters” and my concept of SF expanded again, in entirely different directions. Thirty years on, I’m still floored by those stories; Willis’s work bears up startlingly well under rereading. It doesn’t rely on shock or in-jokes or other stale devices. It’s just plain smart, and built on the backs of instantly recognizable characters. I’m thrilled that SFWA is honoring such a fine writer and beloved member of the SF community.” –Rose Fox, Publisher’s Weekly
I met Connie Willis thirty years ago and have been an eyewitness to her dramatic rise from promising young writer to award-winning professional to a figure of historic importance to science fiction. Although she is well loved for her humor — and deservedly so – it is her stories of desperate people in crisis, of good people confronting evil and of ordinary people finding their nobility that form the foundation of her amazing career. She stands at the very center of our genre and is without question one of the best writers of my or any other generation. –James Patrick Kelly, 2-time Hugo Award winner