My first pro-level fiction sale this past August automatically qualified me for the John W. Campbell Award for Best New Writer in Science Fiction and Fantasy. A writer is eligible for the award for two years from the their first sale that paid at least 3 cents a word. As you might expect, that catches a lot of new writers, and the field is crowded.
The award works by first narrowing the field from all eligible writers through a nomination period. If you’ve attended a Worldcon (the previous one to the current year) or have bought memberships to the current year’s or the following year’s you are eligible to nominate. I believe 5-6 are nominated and then they move on to another round of voting to choose the winner.
By my quick count, there are over a 100 eligible writers. So who to choose? How to make an informed decision? Thankfully, M. David Blake graciously put together a free anthology of all the writers that sent him in work. That’s over 860,000 words of free fiction from up-and-coming writers!
My story The Highlight of a Life, which first appeared in Fiction River, appears in the anthology. It’s only up until when the voting for the award closes (expected to be April 2014). So check it out free while you can!
Also, to help introduce the eligible writers, Bonnie Jo Stufflebeam, queried the field of eligible writers and posted their responses to her short story review blog. My response is here.
Hope you enjoy all that free fiction!