Tag Archive for Hugo Award

AWARD ELIGIBILITY POST

So it’s that time of the year again, when the voting periods open for all kinds of spiffy SF/F awards. Now, let’s be honest, I’m fairly new to this field as a pro (but certainly not as a fan) so anything I write is going to be up against works by authors with a list of publication credits as long as their arm (or longer, in some cases).

In the era of internet self-promotion, it’s nearly impossible for a writer to sit back and wait for discovery. In fact, I’d wager discoverability is just as hard for new and upcoming authors as it is for a brand-new indie app in the Apple store.

I have two pieces published for you to consider. Both were released in May 2018 as inaugural pieces by indie publisher imprint “Strange Fuse”.

https://www.amazon.com/dp/B07CKTYRS8

WISHES FOLDED INTO FANCY PAPER,
a novelette length piece of science fiction (a little more “social sci-fi” than my usual pew-pew with robots stuff).

https://www.amazon.com/dp/B07CKYXT1M

THE GOPHERS OF HIGH CHARITY
a novella-length fantasy about the adventure that sets two street urchins on the path to becoming classic adventurers. This one’s the first in a planned series, so if you like it, keep your eye out for more in 2019.

Hugo and Campbell Award Eligibility

Here is my shameless plug.  

VOTE FOR ME. VOTE FOR ME. VOTE FOR ME.

http://midamericon2.org/the-hugo-awards/hugo-nominations/

 

This year I am eligible for two awards as a writer.  The first, and possibly the most important at this time is the Campbell Award for new writers (Link HERE).  I say most important because you only get one shot at this one.  You can be eligible for two consecutive years and that’s it.  Game over.  My short story “Sea Change” was published in September of 2015 over at Galaxy’s Edge, edited by Mike Resnik.  This makes me eligible for the 2016 and 2017 awards. I’ve posted an online copy here (SeaChange) so you can read the story.

The second, and equally important (but the kind of award I will hopefully have many shots at over time) is the Hugo Award (Link HERE) in the short story category.  There is a lot of competition, and pretty much everything on the list is a great read.  Go nominate me.

 

The story has gotten a couple of delightful reviews (so you can see what others are saying about it):

http://highclearing.com/index.php/archives/2015/09/06/18854

http://www.liscareyslibrary.com/2015/09/sea-change-by-kimberly-unger.html

 

This is a weird thing for me.  I have been working in games for decades now, but almost always as a part of some larger team. I handle the art. I handle the design, I handle the biz-dev, but these are never solo-acts.  So when awards pop up for games, those are a very different experience.  Those are teams versus teams and the campaigning, the submitting, the judging, all those things are handled by someone else.  The PR people for the publisher, the community managers, if it’s a small, indie studio then usually the CEO gets involved, but most of the time those of us doing the hands-on work are oblivious to that process, having an award show up on our desk or in our email is a nice surprise.  If it’s one of the BIG ones, then a trip to GDC or one of the larger conventions is often in order.

Writing is rather different.  Right now, at the start of my career, it’s just me.  I don’t have a bestseller on the shelves, I don’t have an enthusiastic Twitter following, I have no PR Team, it’s just me waving my arms in the dark and shouting “HEY I WROTE THIS THING” and hoping people will hear me.

They say that great work rises to the top, but in my decades of experience with videogames, I know this isn’t always the case.  There are thousands of brilliant games out there that nobody ever notices, just like there are thousands of brilliant stories out there that nobody has ever read.

My career as a writer has to start here.  Shouting into the noise and trying to catch the ear of enough people where my work can start to rise.  I’m going to have to shout again and again, whether I am comfortable doing so or not.  So here we go:  VOTE FOR MY WORK!

 

Veiled Alliances Release Day

Screenshot08

 

A little bit of studio-pluggery here.  As you may or may not know, I am the CEO of Bushi-go, a mobile game startup.  For some time now, we’ve been plugging away on building a mobile app based around “Veiled Alliances”, Kevin J. Anderson’s prequel novella to his bestselling “Saga of the Seven Suns” novels.

This first release is a little more app than game right now for a couple of reasons.  Bestselling books don’t always translate into bestselling games.  Now, historically you’re looking at really big games.  Stuff like LOTR online was what everyone envisioned when you tried to make a book into a game.  They focused on the world-building, it focused on BIG BUDGETS and BIG GAMES.  We think we have a solution that will give the readers the kind of re-imaginings they will love.

But just because you like a book doesn’t mean you’re going to change your entertainment preferences and suddenly become a gamer.  If you loved “Wheel of Time”, no matter how much you loved it, you’re probably not going to go out and drop the cash on a new XBoxOne just so you can play in that world (heck, you could probably buy a full set of those books in a hardcover archival format for the same price).

So Bushi-go decided to try something different.  We went small.  Tight focus, stay close to the book, make the product truly accessible to almost every fan. When the game-play comes in later it’s going to be slower, more thinky, not completely twitchy and shooty (but there may be some of that too). We built this app using the leading edge magic of the Unreal Engine, then took that and modified it so that the app can run on almost every mobile device we could test it against, across all platforms.  If you have a mobile phone, you can enjoy our app.

Because we get it, if you’re a reader, that’s your thing.  You might watch a TV show based on your favorite books (Bones, Game of Thrones) but games require a bigger commitment, both time and money-wise.

 

The “Veiled Alliances” App drops tomorrow.  Head to http://bushi-go.com/games/veiled-alliances and we’ll send you a direct email link when it’s live.  Tomorrow should be Android first (GooglePlay and Amazon) followed by Apple (phone and tablets) and WindowsPhone.

This first release is small, pretty and free.  Because we want to see how many of you like this format.  IF the download numbers look good, if we’ve chosen wisely, then we can move on to making the rest.