Ditmar Award


Ditmar Award
Ditmar Award
Awarded for Excellence in science fiction, fantasy, and horror
Presented by Australian National Science Fiction Convention
Country Australia
First awarded 1969

The Ditmar Award (formally the Australian SF ("Ditmar") Award; formerly the "Australian Science Fiction Achievement Award") has been awarded annually since 1969 at the Australian National Science Fiction Convention (the "Natcon") to recognise achievement in Australian science fiction (including fantasy and horror) and science fiction fandom. The award is similar to the Hugo Award but on a national rather than international scale.

They are named for Dick "Ditmar" Jensen, an Australian fan and artist, who financially supported the awards at their inception.[1]

The current rules for the award (which had for many years been specified only in the minimalist "Jack Herman constitution") were developed in 2000 and 2001 as a result of controversy resulting from the withdrawal of the works of several prominent writers from eligibility, and the rules are subject to revision by the "Business Meeting" of the Natcon.

Contents

Process

Award-eligible works and persons are first nominated by "natural persons active in fandom, or from full or supporting members of the national convention of the year of the award". Nominations are compiled into a ballot (currently by a sub-committee composed primarily of standing committee members elected at the National SF Convention business meeting) which is distributed to members of the convention, and the previous years convention, for voting, which may continue into the period of the convention ("at-Con voting") at the discretion of the committee.

In 2002 author Greg Egan requested to the Awards subcomittee that all of his works be no longer be considered for the awards due to his concern over a lack of permanent rules governing the Ditmars. His decision was made after his work Teranesia won the award for best novel in 2002, which he declined to accept.[2] It was later determined that an author could refuse an award, but not a nomination. It was for this reason that Greg Egan was nominated for Best Novel in 2000, but upon winning that category he declined to accept the award.

Finalists are given an A4 certificate honouring their achievement and winners are presented with a standard trophy.[3]

Categories

See also Ditmar award results

Categories were traditionally the prerogative of the convention committee and regularly included "international" categories. This situation was changed by the formalisation of the categories as part of the rules.

Current awards

  • Best novel: 1969 to present
  • Best novella or Novelette: 2004 to present
  • Best short Story: 1978 to present
  • Best Collected Work: 2000 to present
  • Best Fan Publication: 2009 to present
  • Best Fan Writer: 1979 to present

The Best novel category was originally created in 1969 under the name of "Best Australian science fiction". It has been previously awarded under eleven different names.[Note 1][4] In previous years it has been also been open to collections, anthologies, and short fiction.[5][6][7] Its current form was first used in 2000 and has been in constant use since 2002.[8] The Best short story category was first created in 1978 under the name of "Best Australian short fiction". It has changed names three other times up until 2001 when it was named under its current form.[Note 2][4] The category Best fan writer was first created in 1979 under the name "Best Australian fan writer" and has switched back and forth with "Best fan writer" until stopping in its current form in 2004.[Note 3][4] The Best fan artist category was first created in 1980 under the name "Best Australian fantasy/science fiction artist" and has changed names seven times.[Note 4][4] Best artwork was originally created in 1993 under its current name. Up until 2004 the category has appeared under four other names.[Note 5][4] Best achievement was created in 2002 under the name "Best professional achievement" and has been renamed three other times.[Note 6][4]

Retired awards

  • Best Australian magazine or anthology: 1993 and 1999
  • Best Australian production: 2003 only
  • Best Australian science fiction or fantasy cartoonist: 1983 to 1984
  • Best Australian science fiction or fantasy editor: 1983 to 1985
  • Best contemporary writer: 1969 only
  • Best dramatic presentation: 1973, 1985 and 1998
  • Best fan achievement: 2003, 2005, 2007 and 2008
  • Best fan production: 2000 to 2002; 2004 and 2006 to 2008
  • Best fanzine: 1969 to 2008
  • Best international fiction: 1969 to 1989
  • Best international publication: 1970 only
  • Pat Terry Award: 1980 only
  • Committee award: 1977 to 1995
  • Contribution to Australian fandom: 1987 only
  • Special award: 1971, 1974 and 1983

Best Australian magazine or anthology was first created for the 1993 awards as "Best periodical" and returned in 1999 as "Best Australian magazine or anthology" before being discontinued after the 1999 awards.[4] Best dramatic presentation was originally created in 1973. It reappeared under the name of "Best Australian science fiction or fantasy dramatic presentation" in 1985, and reappeared again in 1998 under its original name before being discontinued.[4] Best fan achievement was created in 2003 under the name "Best Australian fan achievement" before reappearing under "Best fan achievement" for the years of 2005, 2007 and 2008.[4] Best fan production first appeared in 2000. In 2002 it was split into two separate categories of "Best fan production, fanzine" and "Best fan production, other" before being merged back into a single award for 2004.[4] Best fanzine was first created in 1969 under the name "Best Australian fanzine". It changed name eleven other times before being discontinued under the name of "Best fanzine" in 2008.[Note 7][4] Best International fiction first appeared in 1969 under the name "Best international science fiction" and switched back and forth between the names before being retired in 1989.[4]

Notes

  1. ^ Best novel has been known formally as "Best Australian science fiction" from 1969 to 1972 and 1975 to 1977; "Best Australian fiction" in 1973 and 1979 to 1980; "Best Australian novel" in 1978, 1981, 1985 to 1987 and 2003; "Best long Australian science fiction or fantasy" in 1982; "Best Australian science fiction or fantasy" in 1983; "Best Australian long science fiction or fantasy" in 1984; "Best Australian long fiction" from 1988 to 1990 and 1997 to 1999; "Best Australian novel or anthology" in 1991; "Best novel or collection" in 1992; "Best long fiction" in 1993 and 1995 to 1996; and "Best long fiction or collection" in 1994.
  2. ^ Best short story has been formally known as "Best Australian short fiction" in 1978, 1981, 1985 to 1991, 1997 to 1999 and 2003; "Best short Australian science fiction or fantasy" in 1982; "Best Australian short science fiction or fantasy" in 1984; and "Best short fiction" from 1992-1996, in 2000 and 2002.
  3. ^ Best fan writer has been formally known as "Best Australian fan writer" from 1979 to 1986, 1988 to 1991 and in 2003.
  4. ^ Best fan artist has been formally known as "Best Australian fantasy/science fiction artist" in 1980; "Best Australian science fiction or fantasy artist" from 1981 to 1982, in 1984, and from 1986 to 1987; "Best Australian artist" in 1983; "Best Australian science fiction or fantasy artist, cartoonist or illustrator" in 1985; "Best Australian fan artist" from 1988 to 1991, in 1999, and in 2003; "Best science fiction or fantasy artist" in 1992; and "Best fan art" in 2008.
  5. ^ Best artwork has been formally known as "Best professional artwork" from 1994 to 1995, and in 1997; "Best artwork/artist" in 1998; "Best Australian professional artwork" in 1999; and "Best Australian artwork" in 2003.
  6. ^ Best achievement has been formally known as "Best professional achievement" in 2002, and 2005 to 2009; and "Best Australian professional achievement" in 2003.
  7. ^ Best fanzine has been formally known as "Best Australian fanzine" from 1969 to 1973, 1975 to 1977, 1979 to 1990, in 1999, and in 2003; "Best Australian amateur publication" in 1978; "Best publication/fanzine" in 1996; and "Best fan website/zine" in 1995.

References

External links



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