Locus Awards Weekend

 Keffy R. M. Kehrli is a science fiction and fantasy writer who lives in Seattle. His fiction has been published in Fantasy Magazine, Escape Pod and Beyond Binary: Genderqueer and Sexually Fluid Speculative Fiction. He also edits for Shimmer Magazine and can be found at



Last weekend (June 15-17), I attended Locus Awards Weekend. The Locus Awards have been held in Seattle since 2006. This year, they were sponsored by Locus Magazine, and NW Media Arts. NW Media Arts also sponsored a two day workshop (with James Patrick Kelly and Connie Willis as instructors) on Friday and Sunday at Richard Hugo House.

For those of us who didn’t do the workshop, the weekend started on Friday evening. Attendees were treated to a reading by Connie Willis and James Patrick Kelly, followed by a short meet and greet. One of the things I really enjoy about Locus Awards Weekend is that the event is small enough that I have a chance to talk to most of the other attendees.


On Saturday, there were two 45-minute panels in the morning, followed by a short memorial for Ray Bradbury, a book signing (with books available to purchase from the University Bookstore), and the awards banquet.

Confession time. I didn’t wear a Hawai’ian shirt to the Locus Awards this year. Of course, while we were eating lunch, Connie Willis came around to enforce the Hawai’ian shirt rules. People without Hawai’ian shirts were entered into a drawing to choose from a small selection of supposedly tacky shirts. My own sense of style is so warped, however, that I found everything on the table somewhat disappointingly tasteful. Yes, I realize that there are things wrong with me.

The awards announcements were fairly quick. Locus Award short lists aren’t announced at the awards, so despite my inability to remember to go shopping for a Hawai’ian shirt, Catherynne Valente had asked me to accept for her if she won in any of her categories and it turned out that she won three, all in a row. I was a little bit nervous during lunch that I’d completely botch her speeches if I had to go to the podium, but luckily the audience was pretty laid back.

Saturday evening was the Clarion West Party, which is always fun. It’s always great to meet the year’s incoming Clarion West students before they’re exhausted from too much critiquing and not enough sleep. Of course, I ruined the effect of Former Clarion Students Tell The Incoming Class That Doom Awaits Them by standing near the cake and telling the few students who wandered over that really it’s not that bad.

Just in case you were avoiding the internet last week, here’s a list of the 2012 Locus Award Winners:


Science Fiction Novel

Embassytown by China Miéville (Del Rey; Macmillan)


Fantasy Novel

A Dance with Dragons by George R. R. Martin (Bantam; Harper Voyager UK)


First Novel

The Night Circus by Erin Morgenstern (Doubleday)


Young Adult Book

The Girl Who Circumnavigated Fairyland in a Ship of Her Own Making by Catherynne M. Valente (Feiwel and Friends)



Silently and Very Fast by Catherynne M. Valente (WSFA)



“White Lines on a Green Field” by Catherynne M. Valente (Subterranean Fall ’11)


Short Story

“The Case of Death and Honey” by Neil Gaiman (A Study in Sherlock)









The Year’s Best Science Fiction: Twenty-eighth Annual Collection edited by Gardner Dozois, (St. Martin’s Griffin)



The Bible Repairman and Other Stories by Tim Powers (Tachyon)



Ellen Datlow



Shaun Tan



Evaporating Genres: Essays on Fantastic Literature by Gary K. Wolfe (Wesleyan)


Art Books

Spectrum 18: The Best in Contemporary Fantastic Art by Cathy Fenner & Arnie Fenner (Underwood)


You can find the shortlist at the Locus Online announcement here:

Nebula Awards Weekend

The 2011 Nebula awards were presented on Saturday, May 19, 2012 at the Nebula Awards Weekend in Arlington, Virginia. By now, you’ve probably read a list of the winners, but I’ll do a quick recap at the bottom of this post, in case you haven’t.

The convention ran from Thursday until Sunday, but because of other commitments, I was unable to attend the entire convention. This was only my second writers’ convention. I attended my first (World Horror in Salt Lake City, Utah) earlier this year.

I was very nervous about attending WHC, but surprisingly, I wasn’t nervous this weekend. I suspect it’s because I was too excited to finally meet in person several people I’ve known for a while online, namely Jaym Gates, Jake Kerr, and Jamie Todd Rubin. It’s funny. When you talk to people frequently (even if those conversations happen via Twitter, email, or what have you), critique each other’s work and such, you feel like friends already. Meeting in person is simply a formality.

When you’re relatively new to the business, meeting people who are already firmly established is daunting. And more than a bit frightening, to be honest. I did my best to keep my fear firmly tucked inside, but I felt tongue-tied more than once.

At the banquet, I sat next to Jack McDevitt. I may have consumed a glass of wine very rapidly to keep from running away shouting, “I am not worthy to sit at the same table with you, let alone next to you.” And if that wasn’t intimidating enough, I was also seated with Joe and Gay Haldeman, Myke Cole, and editor extraordinaire, Ginjer Buchanan. I may have regaled them with a clever tale regarding my first name, or I may have simply mumbled incoherently. If it was the latter, I hope they will forgive me.

The acceptance speeches of Neil Gaiman and Connie Willis were amazing, as was Astronaut Michael Fincke’s keynote speech. Talk about feeling small and insignificant.

Fear and rambling aside, I had a wonderful time and regret not being able to attend the entire convention, but there’s always next year.

2011 Nebula Award Winners:

Novel: “Among Others”, Jo Walton (Tor)

Novella: “The Man Who Bridged the Mist”, Kij Johnson (Asimov’s 10-11/11)

Novelette: ”What We Found”, Geoff Ryman (F&SF 9-10/11)

Short Story: “The Paper Menagerie”, Ken Liu (F&SF 3-4/11)

Ray Bradbury Award for Outstanding Dramatic Presentation: Doctor Who: “The Doctor’s Wife”

Andre Norton Award for Young Adult Science Fiction and Fantasy Book: “The Freedom Maze”, Delia Sherman (Big Mouth House)

Solstice Award: Octavia Butler and John Clute

SFWA Service Award: Bud Webster received the

2011 Damon Knight Grand Master Award: Connie Willis

For a full list of all the nominees, please visit  SFWA.