Panel sizes may vary among categories – and
from year to year – depending on the perceived workload required and the
availability of judges for a particular category. However, each panel will consist of at least three judges,
one of which will be the panel convenor.
Judges are volunteers and are drawn from the
speculative fiction community; from diverse professions and backgrounds, and
may include academics, booksellers, librarians, published authors, publishing
industry professionals, reviewers and enthusiasts. The only qualification
necessary is a demonstrated knowledge of and interest in their chosen category.
Being an Aurealis Awards judge involves
reading entries in a single category, which may comprise several dozen novels
and/or more than a hundred short stories in the process of evaluating the
year’s entries. Judges may keep their reading copies of entries.
It is vital that judges be able to work as
part of a team and meet stringent deadlines. Most of the judges’ discussions
are conducted via an online forum or email.
All discussions are confidential between the
judges in each panel and the judging coordinator and/or the Aurealis Awards
management team, as required. The Aurealis Awards judging coordinator will have
no input into these decisions unless a panel of judges is unable to reach a consensus.
Judges from previous Aurealis Awards processes
are welcome – indeed encouraged – to re-apply. But, in the interests of
transparency and impartiality, no one may judge the same category for more than
two consecutive years, and a break of two consecutive years is required before
a judge can reapply to be a judge in that particular category again.
Because fantasy and science fiction are the
largest categories, they have been split into two separate judging panels, one
for novels and one for short stories.
As of 2013, all judges for the Aurealis Awards
will accept works electronically and will each nominate
their preferred electronic file format.
The winner of the Peter McNamara Convenors'
Award for Excellence will be reached by a consensus of the convenors of each of
the judging panels.
Each judge receives one complimentary ticket
(non-transferable) to the Aurealis Awards 2013 ceremony to be held in April
2014 in Canberra.
Aurealis Awards finalists and winners in each
category are selected by our judges.
2013 Judging Panels
Judging Coordinator: Tehani Wessely
Science Fiction: Novel
Lorraine Cormack enjoys reading across a wide range of genres, and discovering good writers who are new to her, as well as following the writings of established authors. She has been a book reviewer for many years, including most recently for the late lamented ASiF website. She is a founding member of the Canberra Speculative Fiction Guild. She lives with her family.
Merrick (convenor) is an SF/F critic and
reader. Her book The Secret Feminist
Cabal was shortlisted for a Hugo and won the William J Atheling Jr award.
Other publications include the co-edited collection Women of Other Worlds and
the co-authored Beyond the Cyborg: Adventures with Donna Haraway. By day she is
an academic at Curtin University. By night she reads way too much speculative
fiction, mostly for fun.
Alexandra Pierce is a teacher, a reader, a reviewer, and podcaster. She teaches history,
and doesn't manage to read quite enough of it. She reads a lot of science
fiction and not quite as much fantasy, loving both novels and the short form.
She reviews on her own blog (www.randomalex.net) and occasionally at Strange Horizons, while she podcasts at Last Short
Story and, more frequently, the Hugo-nominated Galactic Suburbia. She also
manages to go see her husband, go to church, and spend some time on astronomy.
Keith Stevenson is a
speculative fiction writer, publisher with award-winning Australian independent
press coeur de lion publishing, past editor of Aurealis Magazine, and was a
pioneer podcaster with his Terra Incognita SF show. He's passionate about
science fiction and is working on his own two-book space opera while plotting
the next big thing for coeur de lion.
Science Fiction: Short Story
Zara Baxter has been reading science fiction since she stumbled onto The Dispossessed in high school. She's worked for the past 15 years as a technology writer and editor, and spends her spare time involved in science fiction, fantasy and horror fandom and publishing — from attending conventions to writing short stories, reviewing, and producing very occasional fanzines. She attended Clarion South Writer's workshop in 2004, was a member (and sometime editor) of Andromeda Spaceways Inflight Magazine for six years, and still slush-reads for that publication. Zara has previous been an Aurealis Awards judge for Fantasy Novel.
Nahrung (convenor) grew up on
a Queensland cattle property and now lives in Ballarat with his wife,
the writer Kirstyn McDermott. He works as an editor and journalist to
support his travel addiction. His fiction is invariably darkly themed, perhaps
reflecting his passion for classic B-grade horror films and ’80s goth
rock. The co-author of the novel The Darkness Within (Hachette Australia),
his most recent long fiction titles are the Gothic tale Salvage (Twelfth
Planet Press) and Blood and Dust (Xoum). He lurks online
Sally Newham is a long-time, passionate, critical reader and sporadic writer of
speculative fiction who lives in a cottage by a creek with her son and her dog
in Northern NSW. She has taught creative writing to kids, including editing an
anthology of their work. She has an Honours degree in Creative Writing and
loves the scholarly examination of texts through contemporary lenses such as
ecocriticism, especially the work of a certain Mr. Shakespeare. Her first (and
only, thus far) novel manuscript won a place in the 2010 Allen and Unwin/QWC
Children's Literature Manuscript Development Program. She recently attended
this event: http://monash.edu/library/collections/exhibitions/fairyland/catalogue.pdf and read her contemporary selkie tale 'My Flood Husband' which was
published in Fablecroft's 2011 After the
Rain anthology. She occasionally blogs here: http://sistersofthepen.wordpress.com/ and here: http://whianwhiansmallthings.wordpress.com/
Tania Walker is an
author/illustrator and has been a lifelong friend of the written word since age
four, when she first wrote her initials in Liquid Paper on the side of her
parents’ house. Since then she’s embarked on a haphazard career of artistic and
literary adventure, including: working for Walt Disney Animation Australia,
designing naughty toys and novelties, creating art for poker machines, and
coding websites for the university where she also studies. She’s had one short
story published and hopes that reading a couple hundred more of the same might
keep her out of trouble for a bit.
PR Khangure (PRK) is a long time speculative fiction enthusiast who regularly escaped to Middle Earth during primary school. Since then he's become more omnivorous in his spec-fic reading, enjoying and reviewing works in a wide variety of genres including fantasy, science fiction, horror, cyberpunk and paranormal romance. PRK is an IT Geek by day, which provides him the means to fund his spec-fic habit and devour whatever books he can get his hands on. Contributing to spec-fic in Australia, PRK runs conventions as a hobby, and is on the Board of the Western Australian Science Fiction Foundation. You'll usually find him roaming the corridors at Swancon and Continuum, or online via Twitter: @prkaye or his website: http://www.prkaye.com/
(convenor) is a reviewer for Hachette Australia and the fantasy writing
website/forum Mythic Scribes. She currently writes, interviews and judges short
stories for the website Shades of Sentience and has done so since its creation.
Some day, Katharine would like to be a published author but until then, she is
happy re-writing her many current manuscripts, reading as much as possible, and
Cathie Tasker has always been
a devotee of speculative fiction. As a child she read Patricia Wrightson’s Down to Earth which made a strong
impression on her and began her fascination with speculative fiction. She
quickly read every speculative fiction title she could find and continues to
immerse herself in the genre. A prodigious reader across many genres, she
always chooses fantasy first. Cathie was once a public librarian, book
club editor, fiction editor, children’s book publisher and she now works as a
creative writing teacher and freelance editor. Cathie feels that she has found
her calling as an editor and teacher: “I’m the Spock, not the Kirk”.
Walker is a writer, chronic student and
avid reader. Originally a Psychology student, she spends (too) much of her time
analysing mental states. Luckily, now she is a Writing student, she can write
about them. Her first 'proper book' was Matilda
by Roald Dahl, and she feels she has modelled herself accordingly (though,
unfortunately, still no telekinesis). She can be found online at http://www.butterfly-elephant.blogspot.com.
Fantasy: Short Story
When Natalie Maddalena was twelve, she unofficially changed her middle name to Arlyah; and only later discovered that Alia — spelled differently but pronounced the same — means other, different or changed in Latin. It continues to be appropriate as it reflects her fascination with other worlds, different peoples and changed realities. Natalie is a freelance editor based in Canberra who
spends her leisure time immersed in the fantasy worlds of books, table-top role
play and computer games.
Among AA judges, Simon
Petrie (convenor) is a bit of a recidivist, having previously served on the
SF Novels (2008), Anthology / Collection (2009), and Fantasy Short Story (2010)
panels. He's the author of over eighty published speculative-fiction short
stories (many of which are found in his collection, Rare Unsigned Copy:
tales of Rocketry, Ineptitude, and Giant Mutant Vegetables, available from
Peggy Bright Books), the editor of four-and-a-bit issues of Andromeda
Spaceways Inflight Magazine, and co-editor (with, respectively, Edwina
Harvey and Rob Porteous) of the Light Touch Paper, Stand Clear and Next anthologies.
Simon is a member of the Andromeda Spaceways publishing collective, the
Canberra Speculative Fiction Guild, and SpecFicNZ. In 2010 he scored a Sir
Julius Vogel Award for Best New Talent, and the following year earned a coveted
Dishonourable Mention in the Bulwer-Lytton Contest. He was born in New Zealand
slightly over a half-century ago, and these days makes his home in Canberra.
Until May 2013 Sandra
Wigzell owned a Dymocks Franchise but unfortunately was one of the many
stores to fall foul of the strong Australian dollar and online buying of books.
Until the closure of her shop, Sandra was the main bookseller at Supanova,
working with them to promote Australian Authors to the readers if fantasy in
each state. Sandra is currently working on a number of projects all connected
with the book industry. Prior to buying her store Sandra was Editor of a
bi-monthly craft magazine. She has had a colourful career spanning sales,
marketing and training in both the craft industry and finance. Sandra has
always been an avid reader and currently reads at 2000 words a minute. She
reads across all genres but her favourite has always been fantasy. The escapism
from everyday life and ability to create a whole new world has been the main
attraction. Like wine Sandra just “knows what she likes” and
doesn’t need a book to do more than make her want to turn the page to find out
what happens next.
Shehnaz Iqbal can’t remember a time when she didn’t love reading,
and uses her book review blog to peddle her love to others. Speculating on SpecFic is dedicated to works
of speculative fiction — fantasy, science fiction, magic realism, paranormal
romance and much more. This is her first year judging for the Aurealis Awards,
and she's very excited to be part of the team. When not reading (rare times
indeed), she can be found completing a PhD in Astronomy and Astrophysics.
Mary Elizabeth Burroughs works as a mother and high school English teacher, which means she is a perpetual student of horror. Imagining what dark things may happen to those she cares about — and how best to prevent those things — is her profession. She is also a writer, having earned an MFA in creative writing from the University of Mississippi and studied at Clarion Writers’ Workshop in UC San Diego. She can be found online @wondersofmaybe and the blog of the Sydney speculative fiction writers’ group, the Amberjacks (http://theamberjacks.blogspot.com.au/).
Kimberly Chandler has always been caught up in other worlds, whether
they be inside her own head or created by other people. She is a bookworm and
an editor and a writer. She recently moved from Brisbane to Melbourne, a city
that has always held her heart. Kimberly first fell in love with fantasy
through Terry Pratchett and was lucky enough to be a judge on the Horror panel
for the Aurealis Awards back in 2009.
Congreve is an award
winning writer, editor, book reviewer and independent publisher (MirrorDanse Books).
He has published over forty short stories in a range of publications including Faerie Reel, Tenebres, Event
Horizon, Terror Australis, Aurealis, Borderlands, Bloodsongs, and Cross-Town Traffic. His
collection of vampire stories is called Epiphanies
of Blood. His most recent collection is Souls Along the Meridian, published by
Blade Red Press in 2010. He won the Peter McNamara Achievement Award in 2012
and has acted as judge for the Aurealis Awards on eight occasions. He works as
a technical writer and editor in the emergency services sector. Bill can be
found online at http://www.tabula-rasa.info/MirrorDanse/
Emma Kate (convenor) is a qualified teacher librarian with 10
years of experience who currently works in a middle/senior school library where
she gets to read all the Young Adult she likes. Emma has been a previous
Aurealis Awards judge for the Fantasy Novel and Horror categories. She can be
found online as herself at @waqem and emmakate.me and
as the editor of Elaia ezine at @Elaia_Ezine and elaiaezine.me. She
lives with her daughter in Southern Tasmania where she reads every night before
sleep and sometimes instead of.
Katie Fielding is a dedicated (though currently dormant through motherhood) English teacher who aims to inspire those around her to a love of literature in its many and varied forms. Truly believing that the beauty and nuance of the written word is not limited to those that are carefully arranged into paragraphs and printed in books, she encourages those around her to explore and delight in words wherever they may be found: in poems, on billboards, on walls… In
the fleeting moments Katie has to herself, she has gained a Master degree in
Education, writes teaching resources for Young Adult novels, is Treasurer of
the English Teachers Association of WA, and tries (unsuccessfully) to finish
reading the ever-increasing pile of novels building in her home. She is a very
excited first time judge in 2013.
Stephanie Gunn (convenor) is a writer, sometime reviewer and lapsed mad scientist (but
her degrees sure look pretty on the wall). She has had several short stories
published and is currently working on a contemporary fantasy novel. She has
previously judged the Australian Shadows Awards and this is her third time
judging the Aurealis Awards. She lives in Perth, Western Australia, with her
husband and son, who loves all things Star Wars, despite being too young to
have seen the movies yet (the geek starts young). She can be found online at www.stephaniegunn.com/
King hails from Colorado in the United
States where she ran the events and marketing program at Boulder Book Store,
one of the nations’ largest independent bookstores. While there, she founded
the Teen Advisory Board. This group of 15 teens was part bookclub and part
event coordinators. Mandy was a judge for the Cybils Award for two years in the
Middle Grade Sci-fi/Fantasy and YA categories. Though her passport may be from
the United States, she calls Australia home these days and currently works at
the ACT Writers Centre. In her downtime, you can find her eyebrow deep in a
book or climbing rocks.
Polack writes, edits, reviews, teaches,
critiques and sometimes eats speculative fiction. One day she will learn how to
breathe it. She has two novels published, has edited two anthologies, has
written a speculative fiction-related food history volume for Conflux (the
Canberra science fiction convention) and has sixteen published short stories.
She has recently finished a science-fiction-based doctorate at the University
of Western Australia. She is also an historian, with a PhD in medieval history
and a strong interest in food history, matters Arthurian and almost anything
that involves stories. This is Gillian's fifth term as an Aurealis judge.
Lyn Battersby (convenor) is a published short story author and editor. Her work has been nominated for several awards and has appeared both in Australia and Overseas. She has served as a judge for the Katharine Susannah Pritchard Science Fiction and Fantasy Awards and Aurealis Awards in the past.
Joy Lawn is fascinated by ideas
and images and how authors and artists express these with truth and
originality. She is a critic and columnist for The Weekend Australian and Books + Publishing and writes about children’s literature forAustralian Book Review and Magpies magazine.
She blogs on literary fiction for ReadPlus and also writes teacher notes for
professional organisations. Joy
speaks about literature at conferences and other forums and some of her
favourite times of the year are spent chairing sessions at writers’ festivals.
Joy has an MA in Children’s Literature and Literacy, with a particular interest
in speculative fiction. Her
vision is to see children’s and young adult literature, including quality
graphic novels, further recognised in the wider community.
Sarah Mayor Cox has worked as a primary teacher,
teacher-librarian and literacy coach and currently lecturers in Literacy
Education and Children’s and YA Literature at La Trobe University, Bendigo. In her spare time, when she’s not
‘talking texts’ with the four gorgeous men in her life (three of them sons),
she is a member of the CBCA Victorian Branch Committe, is the President of the
Central Victorian Local Council of ALEA. Sarah is a co-author of Success with Reading and Writing: Helping
at-risk students 8-13 years, Teacher Manual & Student Log (Gaelene
Rowe, Helen Lamont, May Daly, Debra Edwards and Sarah Mayor Cox) Dellasta 2000,
reprinted 2001. Her first trade book is Pictures
Telling Stories: The Art of Robert Ingpen (Ingpen, Lothian 2004). You can
hear Sarah talking with Fiona Parker about books for children and YAs on ABC
Local Radio 91.1 or follow her on twitter @BespokeShespoke. She loves to stitch
and felt, and swim and catch-up with friends whenever possible but housework
and weeding are definitely for the next life!!
During 30 years of involvement with
children’s literature, Kerry Neary
has twice been a judge for the CBCA Book of the Year Awards, a judge on the
inaugural Eve Pownall Panel (1996), and a judge on the children’s fiction panel
for the 2009 Aurealis Awards. In that time, he has reviewed children’s
literature extensively, contributing to Queensland Education department
publications as well commercial publications. Currently he reviews books for
beginning readers on local community radio and maintains a book blog of
annotations of those reviews, Books from the basement. In his
reading tastes Kerry is not a ‘genre-phile’ as such; he enjoys any book that is
well-written and memorable, and makes him think differently about things — at
least until the next good book comes along.
Illustrated work/Graphic novel
Alex Adsett (convenor) is a publishing consultant and literary agent with over 15 years experience in the book industry. She offers commercial advice to authors and publishers, helping them review and negotiate their contracts, including print, ebook and self-publishing agreements. She has worked as a spec fic bookseller in Australia and the UK and has been an Aurealis Judge since 2007. As an agent, Alex is looking for great new works of genre — SF & fantasy, crime and romance and is passionate about the ongoing publication of Australian genre authors. She is often to be found on twitter at @alexadsett or via her website http://www.alexadsett.com.au.
Andy Buchanan is an award winning animator, artist, travel junkie and researcher from
Melbourne. Andy has exhibited internationally and lectured widely on abstract
animation, visual communication and sequential art. His current research
concerns the role of the unconscious mind in the creation of art — some of
which can be found at unconsciousanimation.com
Maree Hanson has been writing, reading and
reviewing in the genre for over ten years. As well as running a couple of
Conflux science fiction conventions over the years, she has published short
stories and a short novel, Rayessa and the Space Pirates. She is currently completing
a Masters in Creative Writing at the University of Canberra. She is very
interested in graphic novels.
Hearse lives in Tasmania, having moved from the stinking heat
of Adelaide about six years ago. He work in retail and has done so for over a
decade. His spare time finds him reading a lot of graphic novels including Walking Dead, Y The Last Man, Chew,
Preacher, Atomic Robo and many others. Bryce is a passionate fan of the
printed word, and demolishes a book or three a week. He also likes pina coladas
and getting caught in the rain.
Anthology and collection
A lifelong fan of speculative fiction, Sarah JH Fletcher is a freelance editor who has been working in the publishing industry since 2006. She began her career in-house in the children's and YA division of Random House Australia, moving to Murdoch Books to work on adult titles, then going freelance in 2011. Her clients range from multinational trade publishers to digital-first start-ups. She was a judge on the Collections and Anthologies panel for the 2012 Aurealis Awards.
Linge (convenor) is a university academic
and an avid reader. She was nominated for the William J. Atheling Jr. Award for
Criticism or Review in 2007 and has been an Aurealis Awards judge since 2008.
Kathryn has won Ditmars for contributing the 2007 and 2010 Snapshots of
Australian Speculative Fiction, in which up to 90 people in the Australian
speculative fiction scene were interviewed within a single week.
David McDonald is a
Melbourne based writer who works for an international welfare organisation.
When not on a computer or reading a book, he divides his time between helping
run a local cricket club and working on his debut novel. In 2013 he won the
Ditmar Award for Best New Talent, and has been nominated for the William J.
Atheling Jr. Award for Criticism or Review three times. His short fiction has
appeared in anthologies such as The Lone
Ranger Chronicles from Moonstone Books and Epilogue from Fablecroft Publishing. David is a member of the
Australian Horror Writers Association, The International Association of Media
Tie-In Writers, and of the Melbourne based writers group, SuperNOVA.
Rob Riel has been
an avid reader of genre fiction since the days when a young bloke could buy the
latest Asimov or Eddings novel for a dollar. He’s been a (very occasional)
contributor of short fiction to the genre, and for some years managed the SFWoE
competition in Australia. Rob has worked as a sailor, metallurgist, university
lecturer in English, electron microscopist, and disability services specialist.
Twelve years ago he established Picaro Press, which specialises in Australian
poetry publication using print-on-demand technology; since then he’s published
more than 300 titles, ranging from complete unknowns to David Malouf and
Dorothy Porter. He has twice received Australia Council grants for New Work,
and has published two books. Rob lives in Cardiff, NSW, with partner Judy
Johnson, a successful poet and novelist.