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Saturdays in Books

Reviews of speculative fiction, YA, middle grade, and graphic novels, along with stray thoughts, links, and pictures.

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The SFWA European Hall of Fame: Sixteen Contemporary Masterpieces of Science Fiction from the Continent
Kathryn Morrow, James K. Morrow

2018 Hugo Ballot: Best Semiprozine

This is part of a series of posts reviewing categories in this year's Hugo ballot. I'll be discussing the entries, the voter packet, and my ballot. I've nominated and voted most years since 2011, when I figured out that all I had to do was join Worldcon to get to do so.


Yeah, I don't know how to even pick eligible zines for this one. I have to look up the definition when nominating every year, and by the time the ballot is out, I've forgotten it again. and somehow it's always a tough competition. There are just so many great venues out there.


  • Beneath Ceaseless Skies, editor-in-chief and publisher Scott H. Andrews - I've enjoyed this magazine in the past, but it somehow slipped off my radar for 2017. Scrolling through their 2017 issues, looks like the short story on the ballot is the only thing I've read. But it also looks like they published a story by Benjanun Sriduangkaew, which is reason enough to just skip them on my ballot this year.


  • The Book Smugglers, edited by Ana Grilo and Thea James - I regularly read their reviews and occasionally read the quarterly almanac. And I backed their kickstarter. I like the stuff of theirs I've read quite a bit.


  • Escape Pod, edited by Mur Lafferty, S.B. Divya, and Norm Sherman, with assistant editor Benjamin C. Kinney. They have hosted an Artemis Rising episode the last few years that is cool and do both audio and text versions of short fiction. 


  • Fireside Magazine, edited by Brian White and Julia Rios; managing editor Elsa Sjunneson-Henry; special feature editor Mikki Kendall; publisher & art director Pablo Defendini -  The fact that they host the #BlackSpecFic report is sufficient reason to put Fireside at the top of my ballot.


  • Strange Horizons, edited by Kate Dollarhyde, Gautam Bhatia, A.J. Odasso, Lila Garrott, Heather McDougal, Ciro Faienza, Tahlia Day, Vanessa Rose Phin, and the Strange Horizons staff - I love Strange Horizons enough to make regular donations to them.


  • Uncanny Magazine, edited by Lynne M. Thomas & Michael Damian Thomas, Michi Trota, and Julia Rios; podcast produced by Erika Ensign & Steven Schapansky - a ton of fiction from Uncanny made the ballot this year, so unsurprising to see them here as well.


Okay, the top spot is easy: Fireside. Followed by Uncanny, Booksmugglers, and SH. Escape Pod in fifth.