Tuesday, December 11, 2012

Topelius Nominees

Suomen nuorisokirjailijat, the Finnish union of authors writing for children, youngsters and young adults, awards the Topelius prize annually for best Finnish youth novel. If this year's nominees are anything to go by, the "culture was" has truly been won where it counts, in the minds of young readers.

Grafomania reports on the nominees, and four out of the five nominees are described as being fantastic fiction. There is ecological sf, dystopic fiction, paranormal romance, and magical realism. When the one remaining nominee is explicitly mentioned to be realistic fiction, that tells me that different forms of the fantastic are becoming the norm, at least among the youth books.

Wednesday, December 05, 2012

Kone Foundation Grants

The Kone Foundation gives out annual grants for research, art and culture (a total of 13.6 million € in the latest round). Among the cultural grants recipients there are a couple of sfnally interesting ones.

  • Maria Björklund, 10.500 € for an album-length story an accompanying exhibition of her wonderful comic strip Planeetta Z.
  • Anna Kristiina Tuura, 7.900 € for a movie script called "Utopia", an ironic comedy about the future of Finland after receiving hundreds of thousands of refugees in 2017.
  • Ismo Virtanen, 9.000 € for an interplanetary full-length animation film Robonauts.

Saturday, December 01, 2012

Itäranta Takes the World

Itaranta harper1 300x228

I mentioned some of this in an earlier post, but it’s worth mentioning again: HarperVoyager has signed Emmi Itäranta for a two-book English rights deal in UK, US, and Australia. The first, her debut novel, Memory of Water (Teemestarin kirja) will be published in the UK next spring.

Teemestarin kirja has also sold to Germany for publication by Reihe Hanser planned in 2014.

This is great news! I’m happy that one more excellent Finnish book is finding its way to a much larger audience.

Update: the book has also been sold to the Czech Republic, to Plus.

Portti Short Story Competition 2012

The Tampere Science Fiction Society has traditionally kept very quiet about the results of their annual short story competition, but from the URS Facebook update we learn about this year’s results. The results are:

  1. Janne Juhani Kuusinen: Todistaja (2000 €)
  2. (tie) Katri Laukkanen: Kierto (500 €)
    Tero Niemi: Kasvottomien kellojen Ursula (500 €)
  3. Shimo Suntila: Milla ja Meri (300 €)

The award for the winner is 2000 euros; the total sum of the awards divided between the winners and honorary mentions is 4200 euros. The award jury was: professor Frans Mäyrä, editor Kanerva Eskola, and Portti editor Raimo Nikkonen. Congratulations to the winners!

Updated with info from FSFWA (story names and price sums); more info there.

Tähtivaeltaja Award to Lauren Beukes

The Helsinki Science Fiction Society has announced the winner of this year’s Tähtivaeltaja Award : the best science fiction book published i...