COVID-19 SF/F Event Cancellations

Numerous upcoming conventions and literary events have been postponed or canceled as part of efforts to slow the spread of the novel coronavirus that causes respiratory illness COVID-19. The situation remains in flux as the full extent of the pandemic remains to be seen. We will update this story and our convention listing with further information about cancellations and postponements as it becomes available.

  • The SFWA Nebula Conference, scheduled for
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2020 Virtual British Book Awards Date Announced

The British Book Awards, or Nibbies, will hold a virtual awards ceremony on June 29, 2020. The original award ceremony, planned for May 18, 2020, was postponed due to disruption caused by the COVID-19 outbreak.

While you are here, please take a moment to support Locus with a one-time or recurring donation. We rely on reader donations to keep the magazine and site going, and would like to keep the ...Read More

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Nightmare Magazine Staff Changes

John Joseph Adams will step down as editor of Nightmare magazine after issue #100 in January 2021, with with author and editor Wendy N. Wagner taking over. Adams will remain editor of Lightspeed and publisher of both magazines.

Adams said:

If you’re a diligent Nightmare reader, you’re already familiar with her editorial contributions: She was the guest editor for our Queers Destroy Horror! special issue back in 2015. But in ...Read More

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SFWA Opens to Comic and Graphic Novel Writers

The Science Fiction & Fantasy Writers of America (SFWA) voted to accept active membership applications from comic and graphic novel writers.

The decision was made by a membership-wide vote during the 2020 SFWA Officer Election. Specific dates and rules are yet to be announced. The voting results are available on the SFWA site.

SFWA also voted to change the membership class name from “active member” to “full member.”

For more ...Read More

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Aguda Wins 2020 Rogers Award

The Suicide Mothers by ’Pemi Aguda won the 2020 Deborah Rogers Foundation Writers Award. The award “gives £10,000 to an unpublished writer to enable them to complete a first book.” Aguda’s novel “begins with a real wow moment and sustains momentum as it draws us into a world that is utterly contemporary yet has room for the mythic and the supernatural.”

Judges for the 2020 award were Sarah Perry, Max ...Read More

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SFWA Nebula Conference Online Registration

Registration is now open for the SFWA Nebula Conference Online, and the website for the event, “complete with an artistic redesign of SFWA’s logos and spaces,” is now live.

Taking place on May 29th – 31st, 2020, and focusing on content relevant to professionals in the genre, attendees will be able to choose from career management, professional development, and expert knowledge panels and workshops. The event will also include solo ...Read More

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Us in Flux

The Center for Science and the Imagi­nation at Arizona State University launched Us in Flux, “a series of stories and virtual events about community, collaboration, and collective imagination in times of transformative change.” They will publish an original flash fiction story each Thursday, and host a virtual event with the author in conversation with an expert in a related field on the following Monday at 4 p.m. Eastern. The first ...Read More

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Layoffs at Macmillan and Tor

Macmillan (parent company of Tor, Tor.com Publishing, St. Martin’s, and others) has instituted layoffs company-wide, reduced pay for some employees, and has frozen hir­ing, effective April 2, in response to the projected impact of the coronavirus pandemic. Employees laid off include Tor executive editor Diana Gill, senior editor Melissa Frain, and editor Diana Pho; their last day is May 1. The sal­ary reductions are expected to last through June and ...Read More

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2020 SFWA Election Results

Science Fiction and Fantasy Writers of America (SFWA) has announced the results of its election for open Board of Directors positions.

Vice President

  • Tobias S. Buckell

Chief Financial Officer

  • Nathan Lowell

Directors-at-Large

  • Phoebe Barton (through 2022)
  • James Beamon (through 2021)
  • Monica Valentinelli (through 2022)

The election committee consisted of Maurice Broaddus, Matthew Johnson (chair), Peng Shepherd, and Kate Baker (advisor). For more information, see the SFWA site.

While you are ...Read More

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USPS Using Sea Mail

The United States Postal Service is sending international shipments by sea, effective April 20, 2020, due to COVID-19 flight cancelations. The first shipment is scheduled to arrive in Rotterdam, the Netherlands, on May 7, 2020. This change will affect magazine deliveries to Austria, Czech Republic, Denmark, Finland, Hungary, the Netherlands, Poland, Spain, Sweden, and Switzerland. As previously reported, several other international shipping delays are in effect that will impact deliveries. ...Read More

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2019 LA Times Book Prize Winners

The Los Angeles Times has announced winners for their 40th annual Book Prizes.

Works of genre interest include Black Leopard, Red Wolf by Marlon James (Riverhead), which received the inaugural Ray Bradbury Prize for Science Fiction, Fantasy & Speculative Fiction, and The Old Drift by Namwali Serpell (Hogarth), which received the Art Seidenbaum Award for First Fiction. As previously announced, Walter Mosley received the 2019 Robert Kirsch Award for lifetime ...Read More

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Choose to Read Ohio Booklist

A few titles of genre interest are included in the 2021 & 2022 Choose to Read Ohio (CTRO) booklist:

Books for Adults

  • A Mile and a Half of Lines: The Art of James Thurber, Michael J. Rosen (Trillium)

Books for Teens

  • The Gone Away Place, Christopher Barzak (Knopf)
  • Opposite of Always, Justin A. Reynolds (Katharine Tegen; Macmillan)

The program promotes reading across Ohio through a biennial ...Read More

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CoNZealand Updates

CoNZealand will partner with online streaming platform The Fantasy Network to host the 78th Worldcon online, July 29 – August 2, 2020. Convention chairs Norman Cates and Kelly Buehler said:

From panels and streaming video to informal hangouts and late-night networking, the virtual convention aims to provide members with the most fun that they can have at a convention from their home.

In addition to full access to the virtual ...Read More

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SFWA COVID-19 Relief Fund

The Science Fiction and Fantasy Writers of America (SFWA) has allocated $100,000 to assist its members with expenses due to COVID-19. “This receipt-based grant will allow members to apply for up to $1,000 of emergency funding to cover the cost of essential needs, such as housing and food, due to lost income from the pandemic.” They are also implementing a six-month deadline extension for all membership dues, effective immediately.

For ...Read More

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Virtual SF Events

With so many conventions and events postponed or canceled due to COVID-19, many organizers are moving to online alternatives. We will update this list of virtual SF events as we learn about more. If you know of other such events, please send us the information at locus@locusmag.com.

  • Baen Books launched the weekly Baen Friday Night Live Reading Series hosted by editor Christopher Ruocchio on April 3, 2020 at 8 p.m.
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Walden Named Nebula Awards Toastmaster

The Science Fiction and Fantasy Writers of America (SFWA) has announced that writer and actor Aydrea Walden will be Toastmaster at the 2020 SFWA Nebula Awards, to be presented in an online ceremony on May 30, 2020.

Walden has written for the series Yin Yang Yo! and created, written, and starred in the Webby-nominated series Black Girl in a Big Dress. She has worked in the animation department on ...Read More

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Bestsellers of 2019

NPD Bookscan released numbers on sales from 2010 to 2019 and listed the top ten bestselling titles of that decade. E.L. James’s Fifty Shades of Grey titles took the top three slots (15.2 million for Fifty Shades of Grey, 10.4 million for Fifty Shades Darker, and 9.3 million for Fifty Shades Freed, all from Random House), with The Hunger Games by Suzanne Collins (Scholastic) in fourth place ...Read More

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New SFWA Staff

The Science Fiction and Fantasy Writers of America (SFWA) has announced Kevin Wabaunsee as their new managing editor, Lauren Raye Snow as their new art director, and Beth Dawkins as their new volunteer coordinator. Wabaunsee will support editor-in-chief Michi Trota in overseeing SFWA’s publications and communications channels; Snow will oversee visual aspects, including graphics, branding, and design; and Dawkins will work to ensure that volunteers and services are placed where ...Read More

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ICFA Update

The International Association for the Fantastic in the Arts (IAFA) announced that they were able to negotiate an advantageous settlement with their hotel after COVID-19 fears forced them to cancel ICFA 41. IAFA president Dale Knickerbocker said, “To give you an idea just how important this is, we could have been on the hook for a $130,000 payment (not a deposit) even if they had not invoked penalty clauses, which ...Read More

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CoNZealand Going Virtual

CoNZealand, the 78th Worldcon, has announced it will be the first ever “virtual Worldcon.” Con-chairs Kelly Buehler and Norman Cates said,

This has been an incredibly difficult decision, but one that had to be made now to give our guests and members some certainty during this extraordinary time for the world.

The changes are coming fast and furious as New Zealand enters a four week lockdown. We are all dealing ...Read More

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Nebula Conference Going Virtual

The Science Fiction and Fantasy Writers of America (SFWA) have announced that this year’s Nebula Conference, scheduled for May 28-31, 2020 in Woodland Hills CA, will be held as an entirely virtual event.

In light of the COVID-19 pandemic, the board of SFWA feels that holding an in-person event this May would be irresponsible.

The Nebula Conference will include panels, solo presentations, conference mentorships, workshops, forums, chats, and virtual room ...Read More

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2020 British Book Awards Shortlists

The Bookseller has announced the shortlists for the 2020 British Book Awards, including several titles of genre interest.

Fiction Book of the Year
  • The Testaments, Margaret Atwood (Nan A. Talese; Chatto & Windus)
  • The Book of Dust: The Secret Commonwealth, Philip Pullman (Knopf; Penguin UK & David Fickling)

Début Book of the Year

  • The Binding, Bridget Collins (Morrow; Borough)

Audiobook Book of the Year

  • The Handmaid’s Tale
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PRH and Rebellion Audio Partnership

Penguin Random House UK has announced it will produce and distribute audio versions of fiction and graphic novel titles from Rebellion Publishing. The partnership will produce around 30 science fiction, fantasy, and horror titles a year from authors such as Katherine Addison, Derek Künsken, and Adrian Tchaikovsky, as well as adaptations of five new graphic novels in the 2000 AD series.

The first title, available now, is Wanderers by Chuck ...Read More

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Everywhere Book Fest

Authors Melanie Conklin, Ellen Oh, and Christina Soontornvat have started the Everywhere Book Fest, a “virtual gathering of kidlit authors, books, and readers that will bring the book festival experience to everyone,” in response to several literary festival closures due to coronavirus concerns.

The two-day event will happen May 1-2, 2020 and include live and pre-recorded panels. A schedule and author lineup will be announced in April. Panel proposal submissions ...Read More

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Diverse Editions Debacle

Penguin Random House and Barnes & Noble teamed up for an ill-advised project called “Diverse Editions” for Black History Month in February 2020, only to swiftly suspend the program following an immediate and widespread outcry. Diverse Editions presented a dozen classic books (including Frankenstein, Moby-Dick, and The Secret Garden) with new dust jackets featuring illustrations of the (mostly white) characters reimagined as people of various other races. ...Read More

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Gaiman and Jemisin in Conversation

Neil Gaiman and N.K. Jemisin will appear in conversation at the Fisher Center for the Performing Arts at Bard College in Annandale-on-Hudson NY on May 2, 2020 at 7:30 p.m. Gaiman is professor in the arts at Bard, and the event is part of an ongoing series in which he discusses the creative process with other artists. Tickets are $25 ($5 for Bard undergraduates), and may be purchased at <fishercenter.bard.edu>. ...Read More

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ICFA 41 and The Outer Dark Symposium Canceled

The 2020 International Conference for the Fantastic in the Arts (ICFA) has been canceled:

For the last two weeks, the IAFA Board has been monitoring the evolving COVID-19 situation. Until yesterday, we considered it our responsibility to keep the ICFA going for the more than 400 members who were still planning to attend, and to let each individual decide for themselves the risk.

The situation has changed drastically and quickly. ...Read More

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Swancon45 Canceled

Swancon, Australia’s longest-running science fiction convention, has been canceled for 2020 due to concerns over COVID-19. Swancon45 was scheduled to take place April 25-27, 2020 in Perth, Australia. The decision was made by a vote of the convention committee, convention steering committee, and the Western Australian Science Fiction Foundation (WASFF) board.

Early projections indicate that the height of the pandemic is likely to be late April to early May, and ...Read More

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Captions Settlement Details

Some details have been released regarding the settlement between publishers and Audible regarding the latter’s “Audible Captions” program (which would have displayed scrolling, machine-generated text while an audiobook played). The publishers won: Audible will not be permitted to use copyrighted works in the program without permission. The judge approved a permanent injunction and request for dismissal with prejudice. Audible is forbidden from “creating, generating, reproducing, modifying, distributing, publishing, or displaying… ...Read More

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RWA Resignations

The remaining members of the Romance Writers of America board of directors resigned on February 12, 2020: directors-at-large Hanna Rhys Barnes, Kate McMurray, Maria Powers, Mellanie Szereto, and Eliana West, and treasurer Nan Dixon. A special election will be held from March 13-20, 2020 for members to elect a new board. The board released a statement that reads in part,

We believe that stepping down to allow for new leadership ...Read More

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2019 HWA Specialty Press Award

Short, Scary Tales Publications (SST) won the Horror Writers Association (HWA) Specialty Press Award, given “to a publisher whose work has substantially influenced the horror and dark fantasy genres.”

The HWA awards will be presented during StokerCon UK, April 16-19, 2020 at the Royal and Grand Hotels in Scarborough, UK. As previously announced, Owl Goingback and Thomas Ligotti will also receive the Lifetime Achievement Award. For more information, see the ...Read More

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Kelly and Moreno-Garcia Leave The Dark

Sean Wallace, publisher of The Dark, announced changes to the magazine’s staff. Reprint editor Michael Kelly left The Dark at the end of 2019 “to put more time and energy in his small press company, Undertow Publications.” Co-editor Silvia Moreno-Garcia will leave after the July 2020 issue to focus on her writing career. Wallace announced that there were “no immediate plans to hire a new co-editor.”

While you are here, ...Read More

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