The 2016 British Fantasy Awards Nominees

The British Fantasy Society (BFS) began in 1971 as the British Weird Fantasy Society, an offshoot of the British Science Fiction Association.

The society is dedicated to promoting the best in the fantasy, science fiction and horror genres.

In 2000, the BFS won the Special Award: Non-Professional at the World Fantasy Awards. The society also has its own awards, the annual British Fantasy Awards, created in 1971 at the suggestion of its president, the author Ramsey Campbell. It held its first Fantasycon in 1975.

The current British Fantasy Society has no direct connection with the earlier science fiction group using the same name from 1942 to 1946.


“The BFS currently publishes two periodicals. BFS Horizons is a paperback journal of fiction, poetry and art. BFS Journal is now devoted to non-fiction: interviews, articles, reviews and features. Previous contributors to BFS periodicals include Tom Pollock, Juliet McKenna, James Barclay, Anne Lyle, Lavie Tidhar, Storm Constantine, Ramsey Campbell, Sophia McDougall, Graham Joyce, Lou Morgan, Gary McMahon, Sarah Pinborough, Mark Morris, F.E. Higgins, Michael Marshall Smith and Gillian Redfearn.

The British Fantasy Awards have been in existence for almost as many years as the Society itself. In 1971 Ramsey Campbell suggested the Society present an award in honour of the recently deceased August Derleth. The following year at the BSFA’s Chessmancon (the annual Easter convention), Michael Moorcock received the August Derleth Fantasy Award for his novel The Knight of Swords.

The first Awards were presented in the form of a scroll designed by Jim Cawthorn, but the 1974 AGM, held at the BSFA’s Tynecon, suggested that a more enduring symbol be used.

The following year the BFS Awards came in the shape of a cowled figure designed by Jim Pitts.

In 1980 Jim Pitts’ cowled figure design gave way to a dark fantasy statuette designed by Dave Carson.

The award was redesigned again in 2005.

For 2009 the award was a winged demon, which was tricky to produce and too fragile to send by courier.

The replacement design for 2010 was a genre-inclusive demon/alien with a dragon’s egg, from the same sculptor.

Another new design was commissioned from the same sculptor for 2011.

In late 2011, the membership voted in a rule that the award “should be abstract or genre-neutral in design, avoiding any preference for horror, fantasy etc”, meaning the previous design was no longer suitable, nor was anything in that vein.

So an abstract etched crystalline award fitting the bill was used for 2012, and a slightly different version of the same was used for 2013.

From 2014 the award was a handcrafted wooden bookend.

For several years the awards presented by the British Fantasy Society were collectively known as the August Derleth Fantasy Awards – including the addition of several other categories.

As the Society grew, so the Awards widened their scope: besides the Best Novel and Short Story sections there were Small Press, Art, Comic and Film categories. The BFS decided it should promote itself on a wider scale, and in 1976 the August Derleth Fantasy Awards became the British Fantasy Awards, with a proviso that the original section of Best Novel retain the August Derleth title.”

These are the shortlists for the British Fantasy Awards 2016.

Margrét Helgadóttir, a Norwegian-Icelandic writer and editor living in Copenhagen, is the only euro-continental writer present on the 2016 British Fantasy Awards Nominees’ List. Margrét was nominated twice, for the Best Collection category and for the Best Anthology category.

Four nominees in each category were decided by the votes of BFS members, attendees of FantasyCon 2015, and attendees of FantasyCon 2016. Up to two further nominees in each category were added by the juries as “egregious omissions” under the rules.

Best fantasy novel (the Robert Holdstock Award)
Guns of the Dawn, Adrian Tchaikovsky (UK)
Half a War, Joe Abercrombie (UK)
The Iron Ghost, Jen Williams (UK)
Sorcerer to the Crown, Zen Cho (UK)
Signal to Noise, Silvia Moreno-Garcia (Canada)

Uprooted, Naomi Novik (US)

Best novella
Albion Fay, Mark Morris (UK)
Witches of Lytchford, Paul Cornell (UK)

The Bureau of Them, Cate Gardner (UK)

Binti, Nnedi Okorafor (US)
The Pauper Prince and the Eucalyptus Jinn, Usman T. Malik (US)

Best short fiction
The Blue Room, V.H. Leslie, UK (Skein and Bone)
Dirt Land, Ralph Robert Moore, US (Black Static #49)
Fabulous Beasts, Priya Sharma, UK (
Hippocampus, Adam Nevill, UK (Terror Tales of the Ocean)
Strange Creation, Frances Kay, US (Tenebris Nyxies)
When The Moon Man Knocks, Cate Gardner, UK (Black Static #48)

Best collection


The Stars Seem So Far Away, Margrét Helgadóttir (Norwegian-Icelandic writer and editor living in Copenhagen, Denmark) (Fox Spirit Books)

Monsters, Paul Kane, UK (The Alchemy Press)
Probably Monsters, Ray Cluley, UK (ChiZine Publications)
Scar City, Joel Lane, UK (Eibonvale Press)
Skein and Bone, V.H. Leslie, UK (Undertow Publications)
Ghost Summer: Stories, Tananarive Due, US (Prime Books)

Best anthology

African Monsters, ed. Margrét Helgadóttir and Jo Thomas (Fox Spirit Books)
Aickman’s Heirs, ed. Simon Strantzas (Undertow Publications)
Best British Horror 2015, ed. Johnny Mains (Salt Publishing)
The Doll Collection, ed. Ellen Datlow (Tor Books)
The 2nd Spectral Book of Horror Stories, ed. Mark Morris (Spectral Press)

Best artist
Ben Baldwin
Vincent Chong
Julie Dillon
Evelinn Enoksen
Sarah Anne Langton
Jeffrey Alan Love

Best comic/graphic novel

Bitch Planet, Kelly Sue DeConnick, Valentine De Landro, Robert Wilson IV and Cris Peter (Image Comics) (#2–5)
Ms. Marvel, Vol. 2: Generation Why, G. Willow Wilson, Jacob Wyatt and Adrian Alphona (Marvel)
Nimona, Noelle Stevenson (HarperTeen)
Red Sonja, Gail Simone and Walter Geovani (Dynamite Entertainment) (#14–18)
Saga, Brian K. Vaughan and Fiona Staples (Image Comics) (#25–32)
The Sandman: Overture, Neil Gaiman, J.H. Williams III and Dave Stewart (Vertigo)

Best film/television production

Inside No. 9: The Trial of Elizabeth Gadge, Reece Shearsmith and Steve Pemberton (BBC Two)
Jessica Jones: AKA WWJD?, Scott Reynolds (Netflix)
Jonathan Strange & Mr Norrell, Peter Harness (BBC One)
Mad Max: Fury Road, George Miller, Brendan McCarthy and Nico Lathouris (Warner Bros. Pictures et al.)
Midwinter of the Spirit, Stephen Volk (ITV Studios)
Star Wars: The Force Awakens, by Lawrence Kasdan, J.J. Abrams and Michael Arndt (Lucasfilm et al.)

Best horror novel (the August Derleth Award)
A Cold Silence, Alison Littlewood, UK (Jo Fletcher Books)
The Death House, Sarah Pinborough, UK (Gollancz)
Lost Girl, Adam Nevill, UK (Pan Books)
Rawblood, Catriona Ward (US/UK) (Weidenfeld & Nicholson)
The Silence, Tim Lebbon, UK (Titan Books)
Welcome to Night Vale, Joseph Fink and Jeffrey Cranor , US (Orbit)

Best independent press
The Alchemy Press, UK (Peter Coleborn and Jan Edwards)
Angry Robot, UK (Marc Gascoigne)
Fox Spirit Books, UK (Adele Wearing)
Newcon Press, UK (Ian Whates)

Best magazine/periodical
Beneath Ceaseless Skies, ed. Scott H. Andrews (Firkin Press) – US
Black Static, ed. Andy Cox (TTA Press) – UK
Holdfast Magazine, ed. Laurel Sills and Lucy Smee (Laurel Sills and Lucy Smee) – UK
Interzone, ed. Andy Cox (TTA Press) – UK
Strange Horizons, ed. Niall Harrison (Strange Horizons) -US

Best newcomer (the Sydney J. Bounds Award)
Becky Chambers, for The Long Way to a Small Angry Planet (Hodder & Stoughton)
Zen Cho, for Sorcerer to the Crown (Macmillan)
Peter Newman, for The Vagrant (HarperVoyager)
Steven Poore, for The Heir to the North (Kristell Ink)
Marc Turner, for When the Heavens Fall (Titan Books)

Best non-fiction
The Art of Horror: An Illustrated History, ed. Stephen Jones (Applause Theatre & Cinema Books)
Fantasy-Faction, ed. Marc Aplin and Jennie Ivins (Fantasy-Faction)
Ginger Nuts of Horror, ed. Jim Mcleod (Jim McLeod)
King for a Year, ed. Mark West (Mark West)
Letters to Tiptree, ed. Alexandra Pierce and Alisa Krasnostein (Twelfth Planet Press)
Matrilines, Kari Sperring (Strange Horizons)

The winners of these awards will now be decided by the previously announced juries, while the British Fantasy Society committee has the task of deciding the winner of the special award (the Karl Edward Wagner Award).

The winners will be announced at the awards ceremony on Sunday, 25 September 2016, at FantasyCon 2016 in Scarborough: FantasyCon By The Sea.

These are the jurors for the British Fantasy Awards 2016.

Best anthology
Gary Couzens
Louie Reynolds
Zean Fairbanks-Gilbert

Best artist
Caroline Callaghan
Howard Watts
Jay Eales

Best collection
Carole Johnstone
E.G. Cosh
Simon Bestwick

Best comic/graphic novel
Ian Hunter
Jo Thomas
P M Buchan

Best fantasy novel (the Robert Holdstock Award)
Elaine Hillson
Rhian Bowley
Ross Warren

Best film/television production
Catherine Hill
Jim Steel
Johnny Mains

Best horror novel (the August Derleth Award)
Aleksandra Kesek
Nina Allan
Sarah Carter

Best independent press
El Ashfield
Ole Andreas Imsen
Richard Webb

Best magazine/periodical
Kate Coe
Marcus Gipps
Sean Wallace

Best newcomer (the Sydney J. Bounds Award)
Elloise Hopkins
Lizzie Barrett
Robin Lupton

Best non-fiction
Kevin McVeigh
Martin Petto
Ruth EJ Booth

Best novella
Jo Thomas
Laura Mauro
Mark West

Best short story
Stephen Bacon
Penny Jones
Phil Sloman

The jurors were appointed by the awards administrator, Stephen Theaker, under the supervision of the British Fantasy Society committee. The BFS committee itself is the jury for the Special Award (the Karl Edward Wagner Award).

The jurors will now begin the process of deciding whether to add any egregious omissions to the items put onto the shortlist by the members of the British Fantasy Society and the attendees of FantasyCon 2015 and FantasyCon 2016. They will then go on to decide the winners, to be announced at FantasyCon By The Sea.

The British Fantasy Awards constitution can be read here





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