This year’s James White Award received over 300 entries, a record number for the competition, and the judging process was complex and very close.  We are now, however, able to announce the shortlist for this year’s competition:

The shortlist is:

“Appiness” by Katie Lee
“Beside the Dammed River” by DJ Cockburn
“Flesh and Bone” by Vina Jie-Min Prasad
“Grumpy Old Man” by Cindy George
“The Demands of Iron” by Benjamin C. Kinney

The winner will be announced next Sunday, 20 April during the BSFA Awards Ceremony (to be held between 7:00-8:00pm UK time).

This year’s judges are:

Sophia McDougall is the author of the Romanitas trilogy – an alternate history in which the Roman Empire did not fall – for which she received a Sidewise Award nomination. Her first novel for children, Mars Evacuees, was released in March 2014. Her website is http://sophiamcdougall.com/ and you can follow her on Twitter at @McDougallSophia

Emma Newman published her first novel, 20 Years Later, in 2011 and it has been followed by three novels in The Split Worlds sequence, published in 2013. She has also published a collection of short stories, From Dark Places. She writes, does narration for audio books and drinks a lot of tea. Her website is http://www.enewman.co.uk/ and you can follow her on Twitter at @emapocalyptic

Adam Roberts is a professor of literature, critic and author. He has published thirteen novels as Adam Roberts, his most recent, Jack Glass, was the winner of both the BSFA and John W Campbell awards but he is also a prolific parodist (as A.R.R.R. Roberts) and has written a history of the sf genre. This year he has already published Twenty Trillion Leagues Under The Sea, with Bête to come in September. His website is http://www.adamroberts.com/ and he tweets (frequently in the form of magnificent puns) as @arrroberts

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The 2014 James White Award Short Story Competition is now open to entries.

The closing date for this year’s competition is 31 January, 2014 and the winner will be announced at Satellite 4, the 2014 Eastercon, taking place in Glasgow between 18 and 21 April, 2014.

The James White Award is an English language short story competition open to non-professional authors from anywhere in the world. Stories must be original, unpublished and no more than 6000 words long. The winning story will receive £200 and be published in Interzone, the UK’s leading science fiction magazine.

Entrants must read and accept the competition rules and are encouraged to take on board our advice for writers. Online entries are strongly preferred using the online form on this website.

The James White Award is supported by Interzone and the British Science Fiction Association.

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The James White Award is pleased to announce the winner of this year’s competition:

“You First Meet the Devil at a Church Fete”
by Shannon Fay

Shannon, from Canada, wins £300 and her story will be published in a future issue of Interzone.

One of this year’s JWA judges, Aliette de Bodard, announced the winner at EightSquaredCon (the 2013 Eastercon) during the BSFA Awards ceremony. Discussing the winning story, she said it was:

A wonderful, strong voice and a delightful set-up. It’s hard to do original stories involving bargains with the Devil, but I thought this one managed to offer a fresh take and an poignant and effective ending.

This year the James White Award was also able to offer a runner-up prize, of £100, to the second placed story.

“Automatic Diamanté”
by Philip Suggars

Philip is from Brighton, and Andy Hedgecock and Andy Cox, the editors of Interzone, praised his story.

Our initial response to Automatic Diamanté was that it is smart, dark and engaging.  Our next reaction was that it’s the work of a talented writer who we would hope and expect to hear from in the future.  It tackles big ideas of self, identity and consciousness: these are ambitious themes for a short story, and they carry a risk that narrative can collapse under the weight of philosophical speculation and be reduced to the status of ‘thought experiment’.  But this is an adroit piece of writing that avoids this pitfall through its wit, its emotional resonance and the controlled energy of its language.

The James White Award received more than 200 entries this year from all over the world. The organisers would like to thank all those authors who entered and to wish them good luck with their future writing career. In particular we would like to commend the shortlisted authors,  Jonathan Bloxsom, Dan Campbell, Darren Goossens and JS Richardson.

The James White Award would like to thank all our judges this year: Aliette de Bodard, Ian McDonald and the Interzone editors: Andy Cox and Andy Hedgecock. We would also like to thank TTAPress, the publishers of Interzone, and the British Science Fiction Association for their continued support for the competition.

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The shortlist for this year’s James White Award has been finalised and can now be announced.

The shortlisted stories are:

  •  Academic by Jonathan Bloxsom
  • All the Distances by Dan Campbell
  • Automatic Diamanté by Philip Suggars
  • Every Useless Parameter by Darren Goossens
  • You First Meet the Devil At A Church Fete by Shannon Fay
  • The Well-Deceived by JS Richardson

The winner of the competition (who will received £300 and have their story published in Interzone) and the runner-up (who will, this year, receive £100) will be announced at EightSquaredCon, the 2013 Eastercon, in Bradford at 7:00pm on Sunday, 31 March as part of the BSFA Award Ceremony. The winner will be announced here shortly after the award ceremony concludes.

The Organisers would like to thank the judges, Aliette de Bodard, Ian McDonald and the Interzone editors Andy Cox and Andrew Hedgecock for their time and consideration and TTA Press, publishers of Interzone and Black Static, and the British Science Fiction Association for their continued support of the competition. We would also like to thank Colum Paget whose generosity allowed the JWA to increase this year’s award fund.

This year’s competition received 201 entries from writers from all over the world. Entries are read anonymously. The final shortlist consists of two women and four men. Amongst the final six are three UK-based writers, one Australian, one American and one Canadian.

Below you can read the opening passages from each of the shortlisted stories.

Continue reading

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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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