The James White Award is pleased to announce the titles of the stories that have made it through the first two stages of the judging process and onto the longlist for this year’s competition. We received 201 stories this year, so the 18 stories listed below have already achieved significant success in making it this far.

The longlisted stories are:

All the Distances
Angels Stick Their Fingers in Electrical Sockets
Automatic Diamante
Callista’s Delight
Do Not Pass GO
Every Useless Parameter
Four Mile River Road: 1 Mile
Leipzig in Winter
Literature Review
The Girl Who Called the World
The Hunter Captain
The Jigsaw Floor
The Smile of the Monster
The Story Thief
The Well Deceived
You First Meet the Devil At A Church Fete

Authors of other stories entered in this year’s competition should consider their work released for submission to other markets. Thank you for taking part, and good luck with your writing.

There are no authors names attached to the stories at present. That’s because our anonymous judging process is still underway.

The James White Award will announce the final shortlist for this year’s competition in a few weeks.


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The James White Award is pleased to announce the judges for this year’s competition:

Aliette de Bodard

Aliette de Bodard is a former winner of the Writers of the Future competition, won the 2010 BSFA Award for Short Fiction with her story “The Shipmaker” and has Hugo, Nebula and John W Campbell award nominations to her credit. She is one of SF’s most exciting new writers and her Obsidian and Blood trilogy of novels, published by Angry Robot, has been highly praised.

Ian McDonald

Ian McDonald first novel, Desolation Road, was published in 1989 and he has gone on to become one of the genre’s most successful and highest profile authors. He has won three BSFA Awards for best novel (2004, 2007 and 2011), a Hugo for his novelette The Djinn’s Wife, the 2011 John W Campbell award for the novel The Dervish House. He was first a judge of the James White Award in 2002 and the administrators are delighted to welcome him back.

Interzone editors

Andy Cox and Andrew Hedgecock publish Interzone, the UK’s longest running and most prestigious science fiction magazine. Interzone has been a long-term supporter of the James White Award, publishing the winning story each year and providing publicity for the competition.


The James White Award is currently open to submissions until 16 December 2012. The winner will be announced at the BSFA Award Ceremony at Eastercon 2013.

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The James White Award is open to entrants from all over the world. The judging of the Award is designed to try to minimise the possibility of bias in the selection of the best story. We ask entrants to send their manuscripts with all details of their names and addresses removed and all judging is done anonymously. This year, for the first time (thanks to the support of the British Science Fiction Association), we were able to remove the entrance fee for the award to encourage a wider range of applicants. As well as receiving the shortlisted stories stripped of identifying marks, the James White Award judges receive the final shortlist in a single format – our goal is to do as much as possible to ensure that stories are judged simply by the words on the page.

Below we’ve attempted to breakdown some of the basic demographic information regarding this year’s (2011) Award. We hope to improve the collection of demographic data over the next few years so we can target the award more effectively at new and emerging writers. Continue reading

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The James White Award is pleased that the winner of this year’s short story competition for new writers is:

“Invocation of the Lurker” by Colum Paget

Colum’s story won in a year in which the James White Award attracted a record number of entries and against a very strong shortlist. Colum wins a £200 cash prize and his story will be published in a future issue of Interzone.

This year’s panel of judges, the authors Jon Courtenay Grimwood and Juliet E McKenna and Interzone editors Andy Cox and Andrew Hedgecock, also took the decision to award a special commendation to a second story:

“Train in Vain” by Tori Truslow

A special commendation has been awarded only once before in the history of the James White Award, in 2001 – the year of the award’s inception, and this reflects the high standard of the stories on the shortlist this year. The judges commented:

Jon Courtenay Grimwood
“Having judged short story awards before I was impressed by the quality of the shortlist – and it was harder than we thought to pick the winner. This says a lot about the strength of the whole list. The winning story, for me, stood out for the vividness of its world and its ability to make the hero’s danger feel real. I liked the mix of dialogue and atmosphere, and particularly liked the way it gave us enough information to build a world but not so much the story stuttered or we were buried beneath data.”

Juliet E McKenna
“‘Invocation of the Lurker’ updates classic SF reflection on humanity’s relationship to technology and its unforeseen consequences with an eerie cyber-voodoo that’s wholly of the moment. Dialogue and dialect establish character and setting with immediate effect, so essential in shorter fiction, while the conclusion is both satisfying and thought-provoking.

Overall the shortlist was of impressive quality with each story showing individual merit as a piece of short fiction and more than that, indicating real promise in these writers. I look forward to seeing all the finalists’ names cropping up in future publication.”

Andy Cox
“The Interzone team were impressed with the quality and variety of this year’s shortlist – there was enormous diversity in terms of theme, form, style, motif and setting.  There was lively but civilised debate about the merits of the shortlist and we feel this reflects the fact that there are a number of promising new writers on the shortlist.

Tori Truslow’s ‘Train in Vain’ is a compelling tale of exotic intrigue and intricate automata, told in breathlessly vivid and evocative prose.  There is no let up in narrative pace in this highly believable blend of fantasy and adventure.  There’s wit too, and a hint of darkness amid the exotic imagery.  We were desperate to know how the story would be resolved and we’re convinced others will be as well.”


The James White Award would like to record its thanks to the British Science Fiction Association, who fund the award, and Interzone, who publish the winning story, for their continued support for the competition.

The 2012 Award will open to entries on 1 June, 2012.



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The judging process for this year’s James White Award has now been completed and the winner chosen – to be announced at the BSFA Awards ceremony on Sunday 8 April. We’ll post details of the winner here at around 7:00pm (BST – GMT+1) on that day.

In the meantime we can now announce the full shortlist with the names of the authors.

Our shortlisted authors for this year’s James White Award are:

Gaea Denker-Lehrman – “Solvers”
Darren Goossens – “Circle
David McGroarty – “A Traveller from an Antique Land”
CJ Paget – “Invocation of the Lurker”
Sarah Stanton – “Chrysanthemum”
Tori Truslow – “Train in Vain”

Thank you to our judges – Jon Courtenay Grimwood, Juliet E McKenna and Andy Cox and Andy Hedgecock from Interzone and to all the authors who took part.

Keeping reading for information about each of the authors and the opening of each of our shortlisted stories. Continue reading

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The James White Award is pleased to be able to reveal the names of the six stories that have been shortlisted for this year’s award.

They are:

  • A Traveller from an Antique Land
  • Chrysanthemum
  • Circle
  • Invocation of the Lurker
  • Solvers
  • Train in Vain

At present the anonymous judging process is still taking place and so we are not able to offer the names of the shortlisted authors. We will make those names public closer to the date of the Award ceremony – which we can now confirm will take place on the evening of Saturday, 7 April Sunday 8 April at Olympus, the 2012 Eastercon, Radisson Edwardian Hotel, Heathrow.

Entrants whose stories are not named above should consider their stories released by the competition and feel free to submit them to alternative markets.

The James White Award received a record 246 valid entries this year and the process of whittling the stories down to the final six was very difficult. The competition would like to thank all those who took part and to wish you well in your future writing.

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The James White Award 2011 is now closed to entries.

We will announce the shortlist as soon as possible – by the end of February at the latest, but we hope to be able to make an announcement before then.

The competition will reopen on 1 June 2012.

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The James White Award is pleased to announce the judges for this year’s competition:

Jon Courtenay Grimwood
Jon Courtenay Grimwood has published 11 novels and is a widely published journalist. His novels End of the World Blues and Felaheen won the BSFA Award for Best Novel. The Fallen Blade, the first of three novels set in an alternate 15th-century Venice was published earlier this year by Orbit. He has finished The Outcast Blade, his second book in the sequence, and started work on the third. He is also vice-president of the BSFA.

Juliet E McKenna
Juliet E McKenna is a writer of fantasy novels and short stories, with the occasional foray into science-fiction and dark fantasy.  Her first novel, The Thief’s Gamble, was published in 1999. The Lescari Revolution trilogy, Irons in the Fire, Blood in the Water and Banners in the Wind, was published in the UK and the US by Solaris. Dangerous Waters, the first book of her new fantasy trilogy, The Hadrumal Crisis, is available now from Solaris.

Andy Cox
Andy Cox runs TTA Press, publisher of two of the UK’s longest running and most prestigious speculative fiction magazines: Black Static and Interzone. Interzone has been a long-term supporter of the James White Award, publishing the winning story each year and providing publicity for the competition.

The James White Award is currently open to submissions until 31 January 2012. The winner will be announced at the BSFA Award Ceremony at Eastercon 2012. Visit www.jameswhiteaward.com

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The James White Award Short Story Competition 2011 is now accepting submissions. Please read the rules carefully before submitting your story. The closing date for entries is January 31, 2012 and the awards will be presented at Eastercon 2012.

Check back soon (or sign up for RSS feeds, follow us on Twitter, join the James White Award page on Facebook) for more news.

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