2020 Best SF/F

Update 11/9/23: Tagged 30 honorable mentions from πŸ“™Neil Clarke's year's best science fiction anthology (click link to highlight).
Update 4/19/22: Tagged 34 stories from πŸ“™Rich Horton's year's best science fiction and fantasy anthology (click link to highlight).
Update 12/19/21: Tagged 3 πŸ†Hugo Award winners (click link to highlight).
Update 11/7/21: Tagged 2 πŸ†World Fantasy Award winners (click link to highlight).
Update 10/18/21: Tagged 3 πŸ†Sturgeon Award winners (click link to highlight).

Every month, on the 1st, we add the most πŸ‘recommended stories from the previous month's ratings to our Year-To-Date (YTD) list, grouped by story length and current score (must be 2 or more). This is our annual library.

After year's end, during the three-month award nomination season, the YTD list becomes the SF/F Ballots list and story scores are updated as “year’s best” πŸ“™anthologies and πŸ†award finalists are announced. For some awards and the Locus Recommended Reading List, we’ll create an annotated list of the finalists sorted by latest score to help people choose stories to read.

After most nominations close in March, the SF/F Ballots list becomes the Best SF/F list and story scores continue to be updated until November when the last award winners (World Fantasy) are announced. During this time, we’ll produce themed selections of outstanding storiesπŸš€✨πŸŒˆπŸ“š with final scores from the annual library.

1. Year-To-Date

2/02/21: 100% done (✓75/75)
Next Update: Complete

Recommendations By010203040506070809101112
πŸ‘ABrown+2 πŸ‘ABrown+1
πŸ‘GTognetti+2 πŸ‘GTognetti+1
πŸ‘KBurnham+2 πŸ‘KBurnham+1
πŸ‘MHaskins+2 πŸ‘MHaskins+1
πŸ‘RHorton.r+2 πŸ‘RHorton.r+1
πŸ‘RSR+2 πŸ‘RSR+1
πŸ‘STomaino+2 πŸ‘STomaino+1
Note: KBurnham is a month behind because she reviews online stories (which generally have no advance copies) for a print magazine with a one month lead time.

2. SF/F Ballots

Here are links to ballots for various SF/F awards, 5 that are open to all, and 4 that are open to members of a convention or association. Highlighted awards are currently open for voting.

The magazine-specific awards come with a longlist link to all stories published by each magazine, with blurbs to help you remember the ones you've read and scores to guide further reading.

For the general awards, see the outstanding stories at the 2020 YTD page, grouped by length (novella, novelette, short story), by publication, by new writer (year 1, year 2), or by author.

A. Open to All

B. Open to Members
Here are some helpful aggregation lists for Best Dramatic Presentation - Long Form (Metacritic's Best 50 Movies - search for Sci-Fi or Fantasy), and Best Dramatic Presentation - Short Form (Metacritic's Best TV Shows). GoodReads Choice Awards 2020 is also useful for science fiction novels, fantasy novels, and graphic novels.

C. Jury-Only

3. Best SF/F

11/9/23: 100% complete (πŸ†32/32; πŸ“™9/9; πŸ‘16/16; 57/57)
Next Updates: N/A

Clicking on a completed award/year's best/reviewer link will highlight the stories whose score was increased by that award/year's best/reviewer.

1. General AwardsFinalistsWinners
2. Subgenre AwardsFinalistsWinners
British FantasyπŸ†₂BFantasy+2πŸ†₂BFantasy+3
BSFAπŸ†₂BSFA+2 Early May
LambdaπŸ†₂Lambda+2 Jun @ Lammys
Shirley JacksonπŸ†₂SJackson+2πŸ†₂SJackson+3
World FantasyπŸ†₂WFantasy+2πŸ†₂WFantasy+3
3. Readers AwardsFinalistsWinners
4. Year's BestHonorable MentionTable of Contents
Best American SF/FπŸ“™₁BASFF+1πŸ“™₁BASFF+2
Jonathan StrahanπŸ“™₁JStrahan+2
Neil ClarkeπŸ“™₁NClarke+1πŸ“™₁NClarke+2
Rich HortonπŸ“™₁RHorton+2
5. Subgenre BestHonorable MentionTable of Contents
Allan KasterπŸ“™₂AKaster+1
Bogi Takacs Jun (Hiatus)
David Afsharirad Jun (Discontinued?)
Ellen DatlowπŸ“™₂EDatlow+1
Paula GuranπŸ“™₂PGuran+1
6. ReviewersRecommendedAward Worthy
Alex BrownπŸ‘ABrown+1πŸ‘ABrown+2
A.C. WiseπŸ‘ACWise+1πŸ‘ACWise+2
Gary TognettiπŸ‘GTognetti+1πŸ‘GTognetti+2
Karen BurnhamπŸ‘KBurnham+1πŸ‘KBurnham+2
Maria HaskinsπŸ‘MHaskins+1πŸ‘MHaskins+2
Rich HortonπŸ‘RHorton.r+1πŸ‘RHorton.r+2
Greg HullenderπŸ‘RSR+1πŸ‘RSR+2
Sam TomainoπŸ‘STomaino+1πŸ‘STomaino+2

Eric Wong
Updated Tuesday April 19, 2022

17 comments (may contain spoilers):

  1. "Come the Revolution" by Ian Tregillis is listed here with the novellas, but word count (and your label on the review page) is novelette. Although I see the F&SF TOC for that issue does list it as novella and the word count is almost there at 16,549.

    1. We generally stick with the magazine's classification unless there's a big discrepancy, in which case Greg might e-mail the editor for clarification. However, going with the magazine's choice is done afterwards with a manual override of the auto-generated category (based on word count) and we sometimes forget to update the labels at the same time.

  2. Uncanny's reader poll is open (Jan 11 - Feb 8): https://uncannymagazine.com/uncanny-celebrates-reader-favorites-of-2020/

    1. Thanks, I've updated this page from YTD to Ballots with links to various awards.

  3. First phase of Clarkesworld's poll is open now until Jan 26 at 11pm EST: http://neil-clarke.com/clarkesworld-readers-poll/

    1. Thanks for the quick heads up. I've added the link and posted on social media.

  4. Hi! RHorton and KBurnham have their 2020 recommended reading lists up at Locus now. Do those usually get included here?

    1. Yes! You can highlight the stories they consider the "year's best" (dark yellow) and "monthly recommended" (light yellow) by choosing their name from the yellow dropdown list at the top of the table or clicking these links: RHorton (10 year's best|28 recommended) or KBurnham (13 year's best|27 recommended).

    2. Thanks! Also do you plan to add the Ignyte Awards to the award list above?

  5. "Ancestries" by Sheree RenΓ©e Thomas is now online at Lightspeed 135 (Aug 2021): https://www.lightspeedmagazine.com/fiction/ancestries/

    1. Thanks, the entry in the table now has the story link.

  6. "The Rat" by Yohanca Delgado is now online at Apex 125 (Sep 2021): https://apex-magazine.com/the-rat/

  7. "Fairy Tales for Robots" by Sofia Samatar is now online at Lightspeed 139 (Dec 2021): https://www.lightspeedmagazine.com/fiction/fairy-tales-for-robots/

  8. The Satellite Charmer by Mame Bougouma Diene is now online at Apex 134 (Nov 2022): https://apex-magazine.com/short-fiction/the-satellite-charmer/

  9. "Test 4 Echo" by Peter Watts is now online at Lightspeed 144 (May 2022): https://www.lightspeedmagazine.com/fiction/test-4-echo/

  10. A Mastery of German by Marian Denise Moore is online at Apex 138 (May 2023): https://apex-magazine.com/short-fiction/a-mastery-of-german/