Not the Orange Juice. The Award.
- "a complex drama of faith, love, church politics, and art, set in 17th- and 18th-century Cremona"
- "A delicate, haunting story-within-a-story told by a girl who must choose between her bright, beloved town and the dark forest beyond it"
- "A mortally injured child lying in a coma seems to influence, or somehow preside over, the lives of her parents and others."
- "Keylanders, the boys are told, must keep within their walls to avoid the filth and disease spread by the Droughtlanders—those who struggle to survive on the parched land between the Keys."
- "Neurobiology, vampires, alien encounters, mommy issues, deep space"
What we're talking about here is the short list of the 2007 Sunburst Award for speculative fiction. Most of you probably haven't heard of it; it's young and Canadian, which is enough to ensure its obscurity even (especially) amongst young Canadians. But it's juried, and it carries a thousand-dollar prize, so it's plenty credible as far as I'm concerned.
And Blindsight is on it.
I have to say I'm surprised, given the nature of the other contenders on the list; literary, small-press stuff mostly, respectable tales which, one gets the sense, not even Margaret Atwood would feel ashamed to be caught reading. I recognise none of these titles from other recent sf shortlists (although Jo Walton's much-lauded Farthing made the Honourable Mentions). In fact, I confess— with some embarrassment— that I recognise none of these titles, full stop.
Which, while it reflects badly on me personally, is a good thing overall. Here is an award recognising works others have overlooked, an award that eschews bandwagons and makes its own choices.
I'm not quite sure what my luridly-packaged space-vampire novel is doing there. Kinda sticks out like a sore thumb. But I'm grateful and honoured that the jury felt it belonged.
That's four now. I'm starting to reach the point where I figure I may just win one of these things through random chance...
Labels: writing news