The book contains the winning entry for each category from the 47th Convention in Boston, the 48th Convention in The Hague, and the 49th Convention in Chicago.
This book is as yet unread, but I have previously read a number of the stories, albeit some time ago, when I was generally providing very succint story summaries. These ‘aide-memoire’ summaries are included below, awaiting a proper read of this volume.
47th Convention, Boston.
The Last of the Winnebagos. Connie Willis.
Originally in Asimovs, July 1988. When reading this in Dozois’ 6th I summarized : “A jackal is splattered across an Arizona highway. No big deal? It is if there has been a catastrophic something or other that has wiped out most of the animal population”. Subsequent to creating this page, when reviewing Nebula Awards 24 I wrote : “For those of you who don’t know, Willis’ story is a near-future one in which she vividly portrays the individual human loss which, as she says in her introduction, is often missing in post-catastrophe stories. In a near-future eco-shambles, mutating viruses have wiped out a lot of the canina population, the roads are jammed with huge water tankers but little other traffic, and (as per the title) the huge RV’s are an endangered species (no loss there, as the problem with such vehicles has got a lot worse since the story was written). A journo/photographer has to cope with the loss of his dog, and his relationship, and the owners of the Winnebago are in a perpertual state of grief over their departed dog.”
- The Calvin Coolidge Home for Dead Comedians, Bradley Denton. Originally in F&SF, June 1988.
- Journals of the Plague Years, Norman Spinrad. Originally in Full Spectrum.
- The Scalehunter’s Beautiful Daughter, Lucius Shepard. Originally in Asimovs September 1988. My short aide-memoire summary after reading it in Dozois 6th was : ‘Immobile but still-living dragon and inhabitants thereof’.
- Surfacing, Walter Jon Williams. Originally in Asimovs, April 1988. When reviewing this in Dozois’ 6th I wrote: Anthony Maldalena is keeping himself busy by studying the communication of, and communicating with, both the whales and the ‘Deep Dwellers’ of the remote planet he has ‘run away’ to. A Kyklops, using a human body, controlled through an n-dimensional interface is interested in his work, but he keeps himself to himself. Philana Telander, a young researcher with interests similar to his turns up. After becoming lovers it transpires that Philomena is another alter-ego of the Kyklops, from birth implanted with a device that allows it to enter her body and experience and record her memories/emotions etc. The couple decide to fight to remove the Kyklops, and also make first contact with the Deep Dwellers of the planet.
Schrodinger’s Kitten. George Alec Effinger.
Originally in : Omni, September 1988. Aide memoire summary from Dozois 6th/Wollheim’s 1989 : Multiple-realities relating to a girl awaiting her would-be attacker. Subsequent to the initial creation of this page, when reading Nebula Awards 24 I wrote : ‘Effinger very effectively illustrates quantum theory through the eyes of a young arab girl, waiting, knife in hand, for a possible assailant. We see possible resolutions to the scenario, which include one in which she is rescued by a Westerner and lives a long life married to Heisenberg.’
- ‘Do Ya, Do Ya, Wanna Dance?’, Howard Waldrop. Originally in : Asimovs, August 1988. Aide-memoire summary : Some band, some music, some reunion. (As an aide-memoire it fails miserably, as it doesn’t help with any recall whatsoever!)
- The Function of Dream Sleep, Harlan Ellison. Originally in : Asimovs, mid-December 1988.
- Ginny Sweethips’ Flying Circus, Neal Barrett Jr. Originally in : Asimovs, February 1988. Subsequent to writing this page, when reviewing Nebula Awards 24 I wrote : ‘typical of Barrett’s work. In a post-apocalyptic USA, an unlikely trio drive across the wilderness, offering ‘sex – tacos – dangerous drugs’. As you might guess, Ginny Sweethips is the ‘sex’, although exactly what she offers (is she human or android?) is deliciously unclear at the start.’
- Peaches for Mad Molly, Steven Gould. Originally in : Analog, February 1988. Aide memoire : ‘Bruce lives on the outside of a skyscraper – him and many others – on account of not being able to live inside. Cyberpunk mountaineers, I s’pose’.
Best Short Story.
Kirinyaga. Mike Resnick.
Originally in : tba. Story summarized when read in Dozois 16th : Kenya recreated in an orbiting spaceship.
- The Fort Moxie Branch, Jack McDevitt. Originally in : Full Spectrum. Subsequent to creating this page, when reviewing Nebula Awards 24 I wrote: ‘a classy little tale of a struggling writer who is visited by a very strange library – one which collects novels which would otherwise lost works of fiction. He is flattered by the suggestion that the unpublished novel of his he is about to bin, is deemed worthy for inclusion in the library, but refuses the offer, determined to find a market for his work if it is truly of such a signal honor.’
- The Giving Plague, David Brin. Originally in : Interzone #23, Spring 1988.
- Our Neural Chernobyl, Bruce Sterling. Originally in : F&SF, June 1988. Story summarized when read in Dozois 16thSpoof book-review of the history of science in the late 1990s/2000s.
- Ripples in the Dirac Sea, Geoffrey A. Landis. Originally in : Asimovs, October 1988.
- Stable Strategies for Middle Management, Eileen Gunn. Originally in : Asimovs, October 1988. Story summarized when read in Dozois 16th : Bio-engineering turns businesswoman into v. nasty insect-type. It’s a dog-eat-dog situation.
48th Convention, The Hague.
The Mountains of Mourning, Lois McMaster Bujold.
Originally in : Analog, May 1989. Review to follow.
- The Father of Stones, Lucius Shepard. Originally in Asimovs, September 1989.
- Time-Out, Connie Willis. Originally in : Asimovs, July 1989.
- Tiny Tango, Judith Moffett. Originally in : Asimovs, February 1989. Dozois 7th aide-memoire : Botanist with AIDS, meltdown of nuclear plant.
- A Touch of Lavender, Megan Lindholm. Originally in : Asimovs, November 1989.
Enter a Soldier. Later: Enter Another, Robert Silverberg.
Originally in : Asimovs, June 1989. Dozois 7th aide-memoire : Francisco Pizzaro and Socrates are reconstructed digitally.
- At the Rialto, Connie Willis. Originally in : Omni, October 1989. Dozois 7th aide-memoire : Quantum Physics at a convention
- Dogwalker, Orson Scott Card. Originally in : Asimovs, November 1989.
- Everything But Honor, George Alec Effinger. Originally in : Asimovs, February 1989.
- For I Have Touched the Sky, Mike Resnick. Originally in: F&SF, December 1989. Dozois 7th aide-memoire : Another Kirinyaga story – young girl wants to learn, but the old ways are powerful, and unforgiving.
- The Price of Oranges, Nancy Kress. Originally in : Asimovs, April 1989. Dozois 7th aide-memoire : Harry Kramer nips back in time from a particularly unpleasant future to get oranges for his friend, and a husband for his grand-daughter.
Best Short Story
Boobs, Suzy McKee Charnas.
Originally in : Asimovs, July 1989. Review to follow.
Other nominees :
- Computer Friendly, Eileen Gunn. Originally in : Asimovs, June 1989.
- Dori Bangs, Bruce Sterling. Originally in : Asimovs, September 1989. Dozois 7th aide-memoire : Alternate History with a rock and roll angle based on a wife for rock journalist Lester Bangs.
- The Edge of the World, Michael Swanwick. Originally in Full Spectrum 2. Dozois 7th aide-memoire : Three adolescents go to the End of the World and start climbing down it.
- Lost Boys, Orson Scott Card. Originally in : F&SF, October 1989.
- The Return of William Proxmire, Larry Niven. Originally in : What Might Have Been 1: Alternate Empires.
50th Convention, Chicago.
The Hemingway Hoax, Joe Haldeman.
Originally in : Asimovs, April 1990. Dozois 8th aide-memoire : Multiple realities that starts out as a literary hoax.
- Bones, Pat Murphy. Originally in : Asimovs, May 1990.
- Bully!, Mike Resnick. Originally in : Axolotl.
- Fool to Believe, Pat Cadigan. Originally in : Asimovs, February 1990.
- A Short, Sharp Shock, Kim Stanley Robinson. Originally in : Asimovs, November 1990.
The Manamouki, Mike Resnick.
Originally in : Asimovs, July 1990.
Review to follow.
- A Braver Thing, Charles Sheffield. Originally in : Asimovs, February 1990). Dozois 8th aide-memoire : Physicist about to get Nobel Prize for work carried about by old friend.
- The Coon Rolled Down and Ruptured His Larinks, A Squeezed Novel by Mr. Skunk, Dafydd ab Hugh. Originally in : Asimovs, August 1990. Dozois 8th aide-memoire : Stylish Post Holocaust story in which sentient animals now have the edge over the remaining humans.
- Over the Long Haul, Martha Soukup. Originally in : Amazing Stories, March 1990.
- Tower of Babylon, Ted Chiang. Originally in : Omni, November 1990. Hillalum joins the effort to build a tower to the roof of the world, a project many generations in the making.
Best Short Story.
Bears Discover Fire, Terry Bisson.
Originally in : Asimovs, August 1990. Dozois’ 8th aide-memoire : Bears discover fire. But Bisson doesn’t explain whether, having achieved this evolutionary leap, their toiletting behaviours are similarly changed.
- Cibola, Connie Willis. Originally in : Asimovs, December 1990. Dozois 8th aide-memoire : The Seven Cities of Cibola – Denver, USA.
- Godspeed, Charles Sheffield. Originally in : Analog, July 1990.
- The Utility Man, Robert Reed. Originaly in : Asimovs, Nov 1990.
- VRM-547, W.R. Thompson. Originally in : Analog, February 1990.