The 2020 longlists were announced on 16 January. Shortlist voting is now open till 5 February. If you are a BSFA member, you can vote for the shortlist here.
Only BSFA members are eligible to vote. If you are not currently a BSFA member, you can join or renew your membership here.
Once the shortlist has been announced, the final vote will commence. It will be open both to BSFA members and Eastercon members.
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 also to promote the genre of science fiction, and get people reading, talking about, and enjoying all that contemporary science fiction has to offer.
You must be a member of the BSFA in order to take part in award nominations and voting. If you are not currently a member, you can join here.
The awards are fan awards and we do not accept publisher submissions. More generally, you may not nominate or vote for your own work. Personal connections to the work are perfectly okay, but you can’t nominate something you directly helped to create, or have a direct professional interest in promoting, e.g. as author, artist, editor, publisher, agent, or publicist. Nominations / votes like these will be discarded during counting, at the Awards Administrator’s discretion.
Works published by the BSFA (e.g. in Vector or Focus) are not eligible.
Also see ‘Eligibility FAQ’ below.
There are three rounds: longlist, shortlist, final vote.
- Longlist nominations are open from mid-September until 31 December. BSFA members may submit up to 4 nominations in each category.
- Shortlist voting is open from early January until 5 February. BSFA members may vote for up to 4 nominations in each category to proceed to the shortlist.
- The final vote takes place once the shortlists have been announced. Voting opens in early February and closes at noon on the day of the awards ceremony. BSFA and Eastercon members are eligible to vote, and the awards ceremony takes place at Eastercon.
The Best Novel award is open to any novel-length work of science fiction or fantasy first published in the year of eligibility. (Note that a rule change in 2018 means that works no longer need to have been published in the UK or ROI; works are eligible regardless of publication location.) 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 science fictional or fantastic artwork 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.
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!
Longlists and shortlists
The longlists consist of all works nominated by at least one BSFA member.
The shortlists normally comprise the five works in each category that receive the most shortlisting votes 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 or more, at the discretion of the Awards Administrator.
Around the same time as longlisting nominations were open, the BSFA also hosted an informal crowdsourced suggestion sheet, which you can still access.
How are the votes counted?
We employ the Alternative Voting System. In brief, voters rank the candidates in order of preferences; the lowest scoring candidate in each round is eliminated and those ballots redistributed until one candidate has more than 50% of the vote.
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.
Can I nominate my cover artist? Yes. In the artwork category, we do allow cover art to be nominated by members with direct connections to a publication (e.g. as author, editor, publisher), provided you didn’t directly contribute to the actual artwork.
Can I nominate work by a BSFA Officer? Yes. Works published by the BSFA, or in association with the BSFA, are ineligible for a BSFA award.
What is the year of eligibility? The year of eligibility is the same year that longlist nominations open. For example, if nominations open in 2030, and the final vote occurs in 2031, then the year of eligibility is 2030. Works published in 2030 will be eligible.
I have another question. If you have any questions about the Awards, feel free to get in touch. Direct queries to email@example.com (we are currently between Awards Officers!).