The Science Fiction and Fantasy Writers of America announced winners of the 2020 Nebula Awards this weekend, at the 56th Annual Nebula Banquet during the 2021 SFWA Nebula Conference.
Author and editor Nalo Hopkinson became the 37th Damon Knight Grand Master, for her contributions to the literature of science fiction and fantasy.
The Damon Knight Memorial Grand Master Award recognises “lifetime achievement in science fiction and/or fantasy.” Hopkinson joins the Grand Master ranks alongside such legends as C. J. Cherryh, Peter S. Beagle, Ursula K. Le Guin, Anne McCaffrey, Ray Bradbury, and Joe Haldeman.
The Kevin O’Donnell, Jr. Service to SFWA Award was presented to Connie Willis, for her outstanding work on behalf of the organisation.
Connie Willis is the author of Doomsday Book, Crosstalk, and Passage, among many other fictional works. She has won eleven Hugo Awards and seven Nebula Awards. In 2009, Willis was inducted into the Science Fiction Hall of Fame. She was named a Damon Knight Grand Master by SFWA in 2012. Even with that remarkable career, Willis has consistently made time to volunteer for SFWA in a variety of capacities, including mentorship and several committee roles.
The Kate Willhelm Solstice Award was presented to Jarvis Sheffield, who has a long history of working to help diversify the science fiction community, among authors and fans; and posthumously to award-winning author Ben Bova and Rachel Caine, the bestselling author of several fantasy, science fiction, and thriller series.
The Kate Wilhelm Solstice Award is given by SFWA for distinguished contributions to the science fiction and fantasy community. Bova, Caine, and Sheffield join the ranks of previous Solstice Award winners, including Octavia E. Butler, James Tiptree, Jr., and Carl Sagan.
- Piranesi by Susanna Clarke, published by Bloomsbury US and Bloomsbury UK
- The City We Became by N.K. Jemisin, published by Orbit US and Orbit UK
- Mexican Gothic by Silvia Moreno-Garcia, published by Del Rey and Jo Fletcher
- The Midnight Bargain by C. L. Polk, published by Erewhon
- Black Sun by Rebecca Roanhorse, published by Saga and Solaris
- Winner: Network Effect by Martha Wells, published by Tordotcom
- “Tower of Mud and Straw” by Yaroslav Barsukov, published by Metaphorosis
- “Finna” by Nino Cipri, published by Tordotcom
- Winner: “Ring Shout” by P. Djèlí Clark, published by Tordotcom
- “Ife-Iyoku, the Tale of Imadeyunuagbon” by Ekpeki Oghenechovwe Donald, published by Aurelia Leo
- “The Four Profound Weaves” by R.B. Lemberg, published by Tachyon
- “Riot Baby” by Tochi Onyebuchi, published by Tordotcom
- “Stepsister” by Leah Cypess, published by F&SF
- “The Pill” by Meg Ellison, published by PM Press
- “Burn or the Episodic Life of Sam Wells as a Super” by A. T. Greenblatt, published by Uncanny
- Winner: “Two Truths and a Lie” by Sarah Pinsker, published by Tor.com
- “Where You Linger” by Bonnie Jo Stufflebeam, published by Uncanny
- “Shadow Prisons” by Caroline M. Yoachim, published by Broad Reach Publishing + Adamant Press
Best Short Story
- “The Eight-Thousanders” by Jason Sanford, published by Asimov’s
- “Advanced Word Problems in Portal Math” by Aimee Picchi, published by Daily Science Fiction
- “A Guide for Working Breeds” by Vina Jie-Min Prasad, published by Solaris
- “Badass Moms in the Zombie Apocalypse” by Rae Carson, published by Uncanny
- “My Country is a Ghost” by Eugenia Triantafyllou, published by Uncanny
- Winner: “Open House on Haunted Hill” by John Wiswell, published by Diabolical Plots
Andre Norton Nebula Award for Middle Grade and Young Adult Fiction
- Raybearer by Jordan Ifueko, published by Amulet
- A Game of Fox & Squirrels by Jenn Reese, published by Holt
- Winner: A Wizard’s Guide to Defensive Baking by T. Kingfisher, published by Argyll
- Elatsoe by Darcie Little Badger, published by Levine Querido
- Star Daughter by Shveta Thakrar, published by HarperTeen
Ray Bradbury Nebula Award for Outstanding Dramatic Presentation
- The Mandalorian: “The Tragedy” by Jon Favreau, published by Disney+ and Golem Creations/Lucasfilm
- Lovecraft Country, Season 1 by Misha Green, Shannon Houston, Kevin Lau, Wes Taylor, Ihuoma Ofordire, Jonathan I. Kidd, and Sonya Winton-Odamtten, published by HBO Max and Bad Robot/Monkeypaw Productions/Warner Bros.Television
- Birds of Prey: And the Fantabulous Emancipation on One Harley Quinn by Christina Hodson, published by Warner Bros. Television and Clubhouse Pictures/DC Entertainment/Kroll & Co. Entertainment/LuckyChap Entertainment
- The Expanse: “Gaugamela” by Dan Nowak, published by Amazon Prime and Alcon Entertainment/Alcon Television Group/Amazon Studios/Hivemind/Just So
- The Old Guard by Greg Rucka, published by Netflix and Skydance Media/Denver and Delilah Productions/Marc Evans Productions
- Winner: The Good Place: “Whenever You’re Ready”by Michael Schur, published by NBC and Fremulon/3 Arts Entertainment/Universal
Best Game Writing
- Scents & Semiosis by Sam Kabo Ashwell, Cat Manning, Caleb Wilson, and Yoon Ha Lee, published by Self
- The Luminous Underground by Phoebe Barton, published by Choice of Games
- Blaseball by Stephen Bell, Joel Clark, and Sam Rosenthal, published by The Game Band
- Kentucky Route Zero by Jake Elliott, published by Cardboard Computer
- Spiritfarer by Nicolas Guérin, Maxime Monast, and Alex Tommi-Morin, published by Thunder Lotus Games
- Winner: Hades by Greg Kasavin, published by Supergiant
Kate Wilhelm Solstice Award
Kevin O’Donnell, Jr. Service to SFWA Award
The Nebula Awards are voted on, and presented by, full members of Science Fiction and Fantasy Writers of America, Inc. Founded as the Science Fiction Writers of America in 1965 by Damon Knight, the organisation began with a charter membership of 78 writers; it now has over 1,500 members, among them many of the leading writers of science fiction and fantasy.
Lloyd Biggle, Jr., the SFWA’s first secretary-treasurer, originally proposed in 1965 that the organization publish an annual anthology of the best stories of the year. This notion, according to Damon Knight in his introduction to Nebula Award Stories: 1965 (Doubleday, 1966) “rapidly grew into an annual ballot of SFWA’s members to choose the best stories, and an annual awards banquet.”
Since 1965, the Nebula Awards have been given each year for the best novel, novella, novelette, and short story eligible for that year’s award. The Award for Best Script was added in 2000. An anthology including the winning pieces of short fiction and several runners-up is also published every year. The Nebula Awards Banquet, which takes place each spring, is attended by many writers and editors and is preceded by meetings and panel discussions.