BSFA Awards

The BSFA Awards are awarded each year to the best Novel, Short fiction, Artwork and work of Non-Fiction as voted for by the members of the British Science Fiction Association.

The 2018 BSFA Awards have now been awarded. The winners are:

Best Novel: Gareth L Powell for Embers of War
Best Shorter Fiction: Ian McDonald for Time Was
Best Non-Fiction: Aliette de Bodard for _ On motherhood and erasure: people-shaped holes, hollow characters and the illusion of impossible adventures_
Best Artwork: Likhain for In the Vanishers’ Palace: Dragon I and II

What are the BSFA Awards?

The BSFA awards are presented annually by the British Science Fiction Association, based on a vote of BSFA members and – in recent years – members of the British national science fiction convention Eastercon. They are fan awards that not only seek to honour the most worthy examples in each category, but to promote the genre of science fiction, and get people reading, talking about and enjoying all that contemporary science fiction has to offer.

Who can nominate?

 You may nominate a work if YOU:

  • Are a member of the BSFA


  • Send or give your nominations to the Awards Administrator to arrive by the 31st December of each year. See here for further details.

What are the categories?

The Best Novel award is open to any novel-length work of science fiction or fantasy first published in the year of eligibility. Serialised novels are eligible, provided that the publication date of the concluding part is in the year of eligibility. Where a novel was first published in the UK or Ireland in the year of eligibility, it may also be included in the longlist, at the discretion of the Awards Administrator.

The Best Short Fiction award is open to any shorter work of science fiction or fantasy, up to and including novellas (40,000 words or under), first published in the year of eligibility (in a magazine, in a book, in audio format, or any electronic or web-based format).

The Best Artwork award is open to any single science fictional or fantastic image that first appeared in the year of eligibility.

The Best Non-Fiction award is open to any written work about science fiction and/or fantasy which appeared in its current form in the year of eligibility. Whole collections comprised entirely of unrevised work that has been published elsewhere previous to the year of eligibility are ineligible.

  • Nominations are restricted to four per category.
  • Nominations shall open in September each year and run to December 31st.
  • From January 1st to January 31st of the following year, members may vote on nominations made so far to draw up a shortlist in each category.
  • You may not make multiple nominations for a single work.
  • Please do not nominate your own work.

Not sure if the work you want to nominate fits the above criteria? Don’t worry, the definitions are kept as open as possible to allow for multifarious multimedia interpretation … if you’re not sure, just ask!

Please do not nominate your own work.

How to nominate.

  • From September to December, nominations can be emailed to the Awards Administrator via
  • An electronic form for nominations is also made available on the BSFA website, via this link. We also crowdsource suggestions, which are visible here.

What happens with my nominations?

At the end of December, a longlist gets drawn up for each category, and then BSFA members can vote on these to draw up a shortlist from January 1st to January 31st.

Then BSFA members and members of Eastercon (in 2019, Ytterbiumcon) can vote on the shortlist after it is announced.

The shortlists for these four awards will normally comprise the five works in each category that receive the most individual nominations by the deadline. In the event of a tie for fifth place, the number of shortlisted works may be reduced to four or increased to six, for example, as appropriate. Works published by the BSFA, or in association with the BSFA, are ineligible for a BSFA award.

The shortlist will be displayed after the nominations closing date and advance postal/email votes from BSFA members and Eastercon members who cannot attend the convention must then be received by the Awards Administrator by a date to be specified shortly ahead of the Eastercon convention, to ensure they can be taken there.  Forms for advance voting will go out to the membership and will also be made available on the website. You do not have to use the forms. Attendees of the convention will be able to vote until midday on the day of the ceremony at the ballot boxes. Full names only, please! And no voting twice!

How are the votes counted?

We employ the Alternative Voting System which we believe is the fairest method of counting.

How can I find out who has won?

If you are a member of Eastercon, you are invited to come along to the award ceremony. If you are not able to attend, follow #bsfaawards on Twitter for the live results, and check the BSFA website shortly after.

Previous award winners:


Novel: Stand on Zanzibar by John Brunner

Novel: The Jagged Orbit by John Brunner
Collection: The Moment of Eclipse by Brian W. Aldiss
No award — insufficient votes.
Novel: Rendezvous with Rama by Arthur C. Clarke
Special Award: Billion Year Spree by Brian W. Aldiss
Novel: Inverted World by Christopher Priest
Novel: Orbitsville by Bob Shaw
Novel: Brontomek! by Michael G. Coney
Special Award: A Pictorial History of Science Fiction by David Kyle
Novel: The Jonah Kit by Ian Watson
Novel: A Scanner Darkly by Philip K. Dick
Collection: Deathbird Stories by Harlan Ellison
Media: The Hitchhiker’s Guide to the Galaxy (original radio series) – Douglas Adams
Novel: The Unlimited Dream Company by J. G. Ballard
Short: “Palely Loitering” by Christopher Priest (F&SF)
Media: The Hitchhiker’s Guide to the Galaxy record
Artist: Jim Burns
Novel: Timescape by Gregory Benford
Short: “The Brave Little Toaster” by Thomas M. Disch (F&SF)
Media: The Hitchhiker’s Guide to the Galaxy second radio series – Douglas Adams
Artist: Peter Jones
Novel: The Shadow of the Torturer by Gene Wolfe
Short: “Mythago Wood” by Robert Holdstock (F&SF)
Media: Time Bandits
Artist: Bruce Pennington
Novel: Helliconia Spring by Brian W. Aldiss
Short: “Kitemaster” by Keith Roberts (Interzone)
Media: Blade Runner
Artist: Tim White
Novel: Tik-Tok by John Sladek
Short: “After-Images” by Malcolm Edwards (Interzone)
Media: Android
Artist: Bruce Pennington
Novel: Mythago Wood by Robert Holdstock
Short: “The Unconquered Country” by Geoff Ryman (Interzone)
Media: The Company of Wolves
Artist: Jim Burns
Novel: Helliconia Winter by Brian W. Aldiss
Short: “Cube Root” by David Langford (Interzone)
Media: Brazil
Artist: Jim Burns
Novel: The Ragged Astronauts by Bob Shaw
Short: “Kaeti and the Hangman” by Keith Roberts (in collection Kaeti & Company)
Media: Aliens
Artist: Keith Roberts
Novel: Grainne by Keith Roberts
Short: “Love Sickness” by Geoff Ryman (Interzone)
Media: Star Cops
Artist: Jim Burns
Novel: Lavondyss by Robert Holdstock
Short: “Dark Night in Toyland” by Bob Shaw (Interzone)
Media: Who Framed Roger Rabbit
Artist: Alan Lee
Novel: Pyramids by Terry Pratchett
Short: “In Translation” by Lisa Tuttle (Zenith)
Media: Red Dwarf
Artist: Jim Burns
Novel: Take Back Plenty by Colin Greenland
Short: “The Original Doctor Shade” by Kim Newman (Interzone)
Media: Twin Peaks
Artist: Ian Miller
Novel: The Fall of Hyperion by Dan Simmons
Short: “Bad Timing” by Molly Brown (Interzone)
Media: Terminator 2: Judgment Day
Artwork: Mark Harrison
Novel: Red Mars by Kim Stanley Robinson
Short: “Innocent” by Ian McDonald (New Worlds 2)
Artwork: Jim Burns
Novel: Aztec Century by Christopher Evans
Short: “The Ragthorn” by Robert Holdstock and Garry Kilworth (Interzone)
Artwork: Jim Burns
Special Award: The Encyclopedia of Science Fiction ed. John Clute and Peter Nicholls
Novel: Feersum Endjinn by Iain M. Banks
Short: “The Double Felix” by Paul di Filippo (Interzone)
Artwork: Jim Burns
Novel: The Time Ships by Stephen Baxter
Short: “The Hunger and Ecstasy of Vampires” by Brian Stableford (shorter version, Interzone 91/92)
Artwork: Jim Burns (cover for Seasons of Plenty)
Novel: Excession by Iain M. Banks
Short: “A Crab Must Try” by Barrington J. Bayley (Interzone 103)
Artwork: Jim Burns (cover for Ancient Shores)
Novel: The Sparrow by Mary Doria Russell
Short: “War Birds” by Stephen Baxter (Interzone 126)
Artwork: SMS (‘The Black Blood of the Dead’ cover Interzone 116)
Novel: The Extremes, by Christopher Priest
Short: “La Cenerentola” by Gwyneth Jones (Interzone 136)
Artwork: Jim Burns, ‘Lord Prestimion’ (cover, Interzone 138)
Novel: The Sky Road by Ken MacLeod
Short: “Hunting the Slarque” by Eric Brown (Interzone 141)
Artwork: Jim Burns, Darwinia (cover of Darwinia, Robert Charles Wilson)
Novel: Ash: A Secret History by Mary Gentle
Short: “The Suspect Genome” by Peter F. Hamilton (Interzone 156)
Artwork: Hideaway – Dominic Harman (Cover, Interzone 157)
Novel: Chasm City by Alastair Reynolds
Short Story: “Children of Winter” by Eric Brown (Interzone 163)
Artwork: cover of Omegatropic by Colin Odell
Non-fiction: Omegatropic by Stephen Baxter
Novel: The Separation by Christopher Priest
Short Fiction: Coraline by Neil Gaiman
Artwork: cover, Interzone 179 by Dominic Harman
Related Publication: Introduction to Maps: The Uncollected John Sladek by David Langford
Novel: Felaheen by Jon Courtenay Grimwood
Short Fiction: The Wolves in the Walls by Neil Gaiman & Dave McKean
Artwork: cover, The True Knowledge of Ken MacLeod by Colin Odell
Non-fiction: Reading Science Fiction by Farah Mendlesohn
Novel: River of Gods by Ian McDonald
Short Fiction: Mayflower II by Stephen Baxter
Artwork: cover, Newton’s Wake by Stephan Martinière (US Edition)
Novel: Air by Geoff Ryman
Short Fiction: Magic for Beginners by Kelly Link
Artwork: cover, Interzone #200 by Pawel Lewandowski
Non-fiction Award: Soundings: Reviews 1992-1996 by Gary K. Wolfe
Novel: End of the World Blues by Jon Courtenay Grimwood
Short Fiction: The Djinn’s Wife by Ian McDonald
Artwork: cover, Time Pieces Angelbot by Christopher “Fangorn” Baker
Novel: Brasyl by Ian McDonald
Short Fiction: Lighting Out by Ken MacLeod
Artwork: Cracked World, cover of disLocations, by Andy Bigwood
Novel: The Night Sessions by Ken MacLeod
Short Fiction: Exhalation by Ted Chiang
Artwork: cover of Subterfuge by Andy Bigwood
Non-fiction: Rhetorics of Fantasy by Farah Mendlesohn
Novel: The City & the City by China Miéville
Short Fiction: The Beloved Time of Their Lives by Ian Watson and Roberto Quaglia
Artwork: cover of Desolation Road by Stephan Martinière
Non-fiction: Mutant Popcorn by Nick Lowe
Novel: The Dervish House by Ian McDonald
Short Fiction: The Ship Maker by Aliette de Bodard
Artwork: cover of Zoo City, by Joey Hi-Fi
Non-Fiction: Blogging the Hugos: Decline by Paul Kincaid

Best Novel The Islanders by Christopher Priest (Gollancz)

Best Short Fiction The Copenhagen Interpretation by Paul Cornell (Asimov’s, July)

Best Non-Fiction The SF Encyclopedia, 3rd Edition ed. John Clute, Peter Nicholls, David Langford and Graham Sleight (Gollancz website)

Best Art Cover of Ian Whates’s The Noise Revealed by Dominic Harman (Solaris)

Specially Commended This British Library’s Out of This World exhibition


Best Novel Jack Glass by Adam Roberts (Gollancz)

Best Short Fiction Adrift on the Sea of Rains by Ian Sales (Whippleshield Books)

Best Non-Fiction The World SF Blog, Chief Editor Lavie Tidhar

Best Art Blacksheep for the cover of Adam Roberts’s Jack Glass (Gollancz)


Best Novel Ack-Ack Macaque by Gareth L. Powell


Ancillary Justice by Ann Leckie

Best Short Fiction Spin by Nina Allan

Best Non-Fiction Wonderbook by Jeff Vandermeer.

Best Art cover of Tony Ballantyne’s Dream London by Joey Hi-Fi.


Best Novel Ancillary Sword by Ann Leckie (Orbit)

Best Short Fiction “The Honey Trap” by Ruth E. J. Booth, La Femme (Newcon Press)

Best Non-Fiction Science Fiction and Fantasy Writers and the First World War by Edward James

Best Art “The Wasp Factory” after Iain Banks by Tessa Farmer


Best Novel Award

The House of Shattered Wings by Aliette de Bodard

Best Short Fiction Award

“Three Cups of Grief, by Starlight” by Aliette de Bodard (Clarkesworld 100)

Best Artwork Award

Jim Burns for the cover to Pelquin’s Comet by Ian Whates.

Best Non-Fiction Award

Rave and Let Die: The SF and Fantasy of 2014 by Adam Roberts.


Best Novel Award

Dave Hutchinson – Europe in Winter (Solaris)

Best Short Fiction Award

Jaine Fenn – Liberty Bird (Now We Are Ten, NewCon Press)

Best Artwork Award

Sarah Anne Langton – Cover for Central Station by Lavie Tidhar (Tachyon Publications)

Best Non-Fiction Award

Geoff Ryman – 100 African Writers of SFF (


Best Novel Award

The Rift, Nina Allan (Titan US; Titan UK)

Best Short Fiction Award

The Enclave, Anne Charnock (NewCon)

Best Artwork Award

Joint winners: Cover for The Ion Raider by Ian Whates, Jim Burns (NewCon)
Illustration for ‘‘Waiting on a Bright Moon’’ by JY Yang, Victo Ngai ( 7/12/17)

Best Non-Fiction Award

Iain M. Banks, Paul Kincaid (University of Illinois Press)


Best Novel Award

Embers of War, Gareth L. Powell (Titan)

Best Short Fiction Award

Ian McDonald, Time Was (

Best Artwork Award

Likhain, In the Vanishers’ Palace: Dragon I and II (Inprnt)

Best Non-Fiction Award

Aliette de Bodard, On motherhood and erasure: people-shaped holes, hollow characters and the illusion of impossible adventures (Intellectus Speculativus blog)

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