New Awards for SF&F Translated into English Launched

Article excerpt

At the World Fantasy Convention in San Jose today a new set of awards for fantastic literature was announced. They will reward and highlight works of science fiction, fantasy, horror and related literature translated into English from other languages.

Two awards will be presented: one for long form literature (40,000 words and above) and the other for short forms. The awards will consist of a trophy and a cash prize. A copy of the trophy and an equal share of the cash prize will be given to both the author and the translator. The awards will seek out and reward authors and translators who bring fresh new works created in other languages to the English-speaking world. For further details see the web site at http://www.sfftwards.org/.

Fantastic literature has a long and honorable tradition outside the English-speaking world. Jules Verne and Stanislaw Lem are acknowledged masters of science fiction while writers such as Jorge Luis Borges, Italo Calvino and Ivana Brlic-Mazuranic have created marvelous fantastic works. Some current authors, such as Andreas Eschbach, Maurice Dantec and Andrzej Sapkowski, have had success in translation, but many more wait to be discovered. Our book stores are full of translated Japanese manga. China and Russia have huge local markets for science fiction.

The award is being backed by a number of prominent academics, authors and fans, in particular staff at the University of California at Riverside (UCR), home of the Eaton Collection, one of the world's largest collections of science fiction and fantasy literature.

For UCR, Professor Rob Latham said, "The literature of the fantastic is an international phenomenon and has been since Hoffmann, Gogol, and Maupassant in the 19th century. Yet contemporary Anglo-American readers have only a sketchy sense of the global scope of science fiction and fantasy today. This award will take a big step towards the goal of closing that blind spot. …