I’m happy to say The Stone Wētā has won the Sir Julius Vogel Award for best novel! The SJVs are Aotearoa New Zealand’s annual awards for achievement in speculative fiction, so I’m very thankful to everyone who voted for it. Climate fiction is an increasingly notable part of science fiction, and it’s fantastic to have it be represented like this, as climate change is, I feel very strongly, the defining issue of this century.
I’d like to mention, too, some of the other work that was celebrated. To start with, of course, congratulations should go to the other writers who were also nominated for best novel. They were Drew Bryenton for Gad’s Army, B.T. Keaton for Transference, A.J. Lancaster for The Court of Mortals, and Dan Rabarts and Lee Murray for Blood of the Sun. What a fantastic field to be a part of! The other SJV categories were equally well represented, but special mention should go to A.J. Fitzwater for winning both best novella (for No Man’s Land) and best collection (for The Voyages of Cinrak the Dapper) and Casey Lucas, who took out the best short story award for the incredible “For Want of Human Parts.” Finally, I was pleased to see Cassie Hart awarded for her Services to Science Fiction, Fantasy and Horror.
The Aotearoa New Zealand speculative community is small but wonderfully talented, and it’s fantastic to have such a pool of supportive and creative people to share pages with. Thank you all! Thank you, especially, to publisher Marie Hodgkinson at Paper Road Press, and the amazing cover artist Emma Weakley, for all their work on the book.