If there’s anyone left in the world who doesn’t know that I have the great honour to be a judge for the Arthur C. Clarke award in 2009, here’s a timely reminder. The judges (shown here and listed from left to right) are:
- Pauline Morgan (for SF Crowsnest.com)
- Ruth O’Reilly (for the British Science Fiction Association)
- Robert Hanks (for the Science Fiction Foundation)
- Chris Hill (for the British Science Fiction Association)
- Rhiannon Lassiter (for the Science Fiction Foundation)
The long list (which is technically a submission list) was announced in advance for the first time on the Torque Control blog.
From forty-six books, the judges agreed a shortlist of six. This was also announced (on the 17th of March) on the Torque Control blog. The shortlist is:
- Anathem: Neal Stephenson – Atlantic
- House of Suns: Alastair Reynolds – Gollancz
- Martin Martin’s on the Other Side: Mark Wernham – Jonathan Cape
- Song of Time: Ian R. MacLeod – PS Publishing
- The Margarets: Sheri S. Tepper – Gollancz
- The Quiet War: Paul McAuley – Gollancz
Paul Billinger, Chair of the judges, said: “It was a long and intense meeting to decide this year’s shortlist, with passionate debate from all of the judges. Although at times it seemed almost impossible, they eventually concluded that these six books were the ones that demonstrated to them what was best about the science fiction novels published in 2008.”
That’s an accurate summary of the shortlisting meeting. I’m not allowed to talk about any details but I will say that I have found judging the Clarke award an incredibly rewarding and exciting experience. Discussing, debating and deciding with the other judges has been intellectually rigorous and genuinely enjoyable. I feel very honoured to have been asked to be a judge and to contribute to choosing the next Clarke winner. Wikipedia lists the previous winnersfrom 1987 when the award began.
The award ceremony will be on April 29th at the Apollo cinema in London.