Showing posts with label Ratings. Show all posts
Showing posts with label Ratings. Show all posts

Monday, December 31, 2018

News & Highlights

RSR Selections: Diversity in SF/F Short Fiction (2015-2016)
🌈LGBT: 33 outstanding stories with LGBT characters (23 free)
📚PoC: 92 outstanding stories by People of Color (62 free)

RSR Monthly & Annual Best SF/F Lists
2018: Jan Feb Mar Apr May Jun Jul Aug Sep Oct Nov Dec; 📅Year-To-Date
2017: 🏆Best SF/F Top 30% out of 800 (142 free); RSR selections due mid-2018
2016: 🏆Best SF/F Top 31% out of 885 (161 free); 🚀Hard SF 🌈LGBT 📚PoC
2015: 🏆Best SF/F Top 35% out of 596 (111 free); 🚀Hard SF

Tuesday, May 15, 2018

April 2018 Ratings

5★ & 4★ Stories: 8; Time & Words: ◷8h:15m 💬148.7K
Recommended By Stories: → Due next month
Total Stories: 39; Time & Words: ◷22h 💬398.9K
Read How to Use RSR on the sidebar or this link to use this post.

Friday, April 20, 2018

2018 Hugo Voter Packet

As a finalist for the 2018 Hugo Award for Best Fanzine, we were invited to supply a copy of our work for the Hugo voter packet. Since Rocket Stack Rank published about 800 different articles last year (every review is its own article), that isn't very practical, so, as we did last year, we created an article (this post) to direct people to highlights from 2017.

For the benefit of people who don't see this page, we're including PDF, EPUB, and MOBI files in the official Hugo packet. Last year, we didn't think many people would use the packet (we thought they'd use the web page) so we simply included PDFs that were little better than screenshots of selected pages from the site. Some people complained that it looked shoddy, though, so this year we put a lot more time and effort into it, and we hope people are pleased by the result.

Wednesday, April 18, 2018

Sturgeon Award Finalists Versus Other Top Stories of 2017

All 11 Sturgeon Award finalists were in the top 10 in their respective categories in Rocket Stack Rank's Best SF/F of 2017 (228 stories out of 810 reviewed).

Novella

  • The one Sturgeon finalist in this category is #1 out of 31 stories.
  • It was tied with fellow Nebula & Hugo finalist "All Systems Red" prior to getting the Sturgeon recognition.

Novelette

  • The four Sturgeon finalists in this category are in the top 10 out of 80 stories.
  • Notable stories that missed the Sturgeon include "Wind Will Rove" (Nebula & Hugo finalist, NClarke year's best) and "Extracurricular Activities" (Hugo finalist, NClarke and RHorton year's best).

Short Story

  • The six Sturgeon finalists in this category are in the top 10 out of 117 stories.
  • Notable stories that missed the Sturgeon include "An Evening with Severyn Grimes" (GDozois, JStrahan, NClarke year's best) and "Carnival Nine" (Nebula & Hugo finalist, JStrahan year's best).

New Writers

  • The three Sturgeon finalists whose authors were Year 1-eligible for the Campbell Award are in the top 4 out of 13 stories. There were no Sturgeon finalists among the five Year 2-eligible stories.
  • Notable stories that missed the Sturgeon include "My English Name" (GDozois & JStrahan year's best) and "The Last Boat-Builder in Ballyvoloon" (GDozois & NClarke year's best).

Friday, April 13, 2018

A Word for Authors

Clip arts
"I've never yet read a review of one of my own books that I couldn't have written much better myself."--Edward Abbey
For a variety of reasons, authors are generally told not to engage with reviewers. Reviews are for readers, not writers, and there is a natural adversarial relationship between authors and reviewers. Authors who publicly pressure reviewers risk alienating their own readers, or so some say.

Rocket Stack Rank is more than just a review site, though; it's also an index of short science fiction that many readers use to find stories--even readers who pay no attention to our reviews. Reviews are a matter of opinion, but the index is a matter of fact, and since its purpose is purely to guide readers to stories they might like, we and the authors have a common interest in making it as accurate as possible.

Sunday, April 1, 2018

2018 Hugo Award Finalist

Thank you for nominating Rocket Stack Rank for the 2018 Hugo Award for Best Fanzine!

We had not expected a nomination this year, so we were greatly cheered at this vote of confidence. We will continue to work to make Rocket Stack Rank the most useful resource for readers and fans of short speculative fiction.

For new visitors, RSR consolidates recommendations from prolific SF/F short fiction reviewers (including RSR) in our monthly ratings, anthology ratings, and year-to-date ratings. For the best from past years, check out the News & Highlights section.

Read How to use RSR on the right sidebar or at this link for more details.

You can follow RSR on Twitter, Facebook, RSS, or e-mail.

Tuesday, March 27, 2018

Outstanding SF/F by People of Color 2015-2016

Update 3/29/18: Removed reviewer CPayseur at his request. Also see discussion of request by Hugo finalist Camestros Felapton.

In the spirit of Lightspeed Magazine's famous People of Color Destroy Science Fiction series, here are 92 stories by people of color that had a combined score of 2+ from RSR's 2015 & 2016 Best SF/F lists. The two lists together contain the 440 most-recommended stories out of 1,481 reviewed, so the 92 stories by people of color make up around 21% of the best of 2015-2016.

Readers asked us to make it easy for them to find good stories written by authors with diverse racial backgrounds, and that’s what this list is meant to accomplish (author identity plays no role in our ratings). Note that this is for fiction from 2015 and 2016 (RSR started September 2015); and we’ll prepare a similar list for 2017 once the finalists for various awards have been announced—probably in July or August.

Wednesday, March 21, 2018

Annotated 2017 File 770 List for Short Fiction

While we’re waiting for the Hugo administrators to produce the list of finalists, almost fifty "Filers" (commenters from File 770) shared their nominations, and we’ve used that to create lists for Best Novella, Best Novelette, and Best Short Story. In a couple of weeks, we can see how well they predicted the actual finalists.

In the 34 stories below, "votes" is the number of Filers who nominated that work, with the cut-off being three or more. Here are a few interesting findings from the 14 novellas, 10 novelettes, and 10 short stories:

Thursday, March 15, 2018

March 2018 Ratings

5★ & 4★ Stories: 9; Time & Words: ◷6h:01m 💬108.4K
Recommended By Stories: 33; Time & Words: ◷15h 💬287.5K
Total Stories: 65; Time & Words: ◷24h 💬437.2K
Read How to Use RSR on the sidebar or this link to use this post.

Tuesday, March 6, 2018

New Features: Flag, Rate, Group, Highlight Stories

To help readers navigate RSR's large lists of Hugo eligible stories, we've added features to let you flag stories to read ⚑ (and not read ✖), rate stories you've read ★, group and highlight stories by various criteria, and save your ratings to a URL that can be bookmarked and accessed on other devices.

You can quickly try it out on last month's ratings below by clicking here to skip a detailed walkthrough of the features that follow.

Tuesday, February 20, 2018

2017 Annotated Nebula Award Finalists

Update 4/17/18: Tagged Sturgeon Award finalists.
Update 4/02/18: Upgrade to dynamic table.
Update 2/26/18: Added link to free F&SF story "Dirty Old Town".

Here are the 2017 Nebula Award finalists for short fiction, sorted by score to highlight the stories that made it into the most "year's best" SF/F anthologies and were most recommended by prolific reviewers.

A story gets 2 points for each "year's best" SF/F anthology it's in (GDozois+2, RHorton+2, JStrahan+2, NClarke+2). Other factors that increase a story's score include honorable mentions from Locus Magazine reviewers Gardner Dozois (GDozois+1) and Rich Horton (RHorton+1) and "year's best" and honorable mentions from prolific short fiction reviewers Greg Hullender at Rocket Stack Rank (RSR+2RSR+1), Sam Tomaino at SFRevu (SFRevu+2, SFRevu+1), and Jason McGregor at Featured Futures (JMcGregor+2JMcGregor+1), all of whom reviewed 500+ SF/F stories for their magazines/blogs in 2017.

Thursday, February 15, 2018

February 2018 Ratings

5★ & 4★ Stories: 4; Time & Words: ◷2h:20m 💬42.1K
Recommended By Stories: 12; Time & Words: ◷6h:10m 💬111.1K
Total Stories: 31; Time & Words: ◷13h 💬243.5K
Read How to Use RSR on the sidebar or this link to use this post.

Saturday, February 10, 2018

2017 Best SF/F Anthologies

Update 4/17/18: Tagged Sturgeon Award finalists.
Update 3/30/18: Removed highlighting and non-anthology stories.
Update 3/5/18: Used new dynamic table. Best SF/F stories are highlighted to show it's a subset of the RSR Hugo Awards page.
Update 3/2/18: Added links to 3 Analog stories from 2017 AnLab Readers Awards finalists.
Update 2/23/18: Added links to 3 Asimov's stories from 2017 Asimov's Readers Awards finalists.
Update 2/20/18: Added 2017 Nebula Award finalists.
Update 2/15/18: Added 14 stories that were missed.

Here are 99 stories from the "year's best" SF/F anthologies so far for 2017, sorted by score to highlight the stories that made it into the most anthologies and were most recommended by prolific reviewers.

The "year's best" SF/F anthologies include the following:

Other factors that increase a story's score include honorable mentions from Locus Magazine reviewers Gardner Dozois (GDozois+1) and Rich Horton (RHorton+1) and "year's best" and honorable mentions from prolific short fiction reviewers Greg Hullender at Rocket Stack Rank (RSR+2, RSR+1), Sam Tomaino at SFRevu (SFRevu+2, SFRevu+1), and Jason McGregor at Featured Futures (JMcGregor+2, JMcGregor+1), all of whom reviewed 500+ SF/F stories for their magazines/blogs in 2017.

Wednesday, February 7, 2018

2018 Professional Artists

To help people make nominations for the 2018 Hugo Award for Best Professional Artist, we have set up a "lightbox" system to let fans quickly flip through the works of over 113 artists listed below and to set aside the ones they particularly liked. Here's how it works:
  1. In the artist list below, click on a thumbnail image. The lighbox should open, showing a larger image of the work.
  2. If you like the picture, ctrl-click (or long-press) the artist's name above it. That will reopen this page in a new tab with that artist's information at the top.
  3. Press the right-arrow key (or tap the picture) to advance to the next picture. Each new artist is preceded by the Hugo Award image.
  4. Once you've looked at all the pictures, go through the tabs you opened. For most artists there's a link to his/her website where you can find a gallery of their work.
  5. Browse the gallery and see if the picture you liked was representative of their work as a whole.
  6. Close the tabs of the ones you liked least.

Thursday, February 1, 2018

Annotated 2017 Locus Reading List for Short Fiction

Update 4/17/18: Tagged Sturgeon Award finalists.
Update 3/30/18: Removed highlighting and non-Locus stories.
Update 3/5/18: Used new dynamic table. Locus stories are highlighted to show it's a subset of the RSR Hugo Awards page.
Update 2/20/18: Added 2017 Nebula Award finalists.
Update 2/10/18: Added recommendations from RHorton's The Year's Best Science Fiction and Fantasy, 2018 Edition.
Update 2/7/18: Added links to all 5 Asimov's stories.

Here is the annotated 2017 Locus Recommended Reading List for short fiction, sorted by score to highlight the stories that made it into the "year's best" anthologies so far (GDozois, JStrahan, NClarke, RHorton) and "year's best" lists of prolific reviewers (GDozois, RHorton, RSR, SFRevu, JMcGregor).

Annotations include time estimates, links to the story on the author’s website (if available), author links with Campbell Award-eligibility marked (superscript for year 1 or 2), blurbs for RSR-reviewed stories, links to reviews, and links to digital back issues (of print magazines) at eBookstores and library websites.

Tuesday, January 30, 2018

2016 Best SF/F Short Fiction Guides

Completing our analysis of the best science fiction and fantasy short fiction from 2016, we turn our attention to 15 SF/F short fiction guides, which is what we're calling our extended idea of "reviewer" but which consists of 5 awards, 5 "year's best" anthologies, and 5 prolific reviewers that guide readers to a few dozen of the best stories out of over 800 surveyed. Remember that in this context "best" just means "most-recommended by sources Rocket Stack Rank tracks."

Using the scores for 887 stories from the 2016 Best SF/F Short Fiction article and grouping the stories by guide, we show the top guides by average score in 2016, then offer suggestions on how to use this information to guide your reading.

Top five guides by average score:
  • Score 088; Stories 09; Avg Score 9.8Sturgeon
  • Score 037; Stories 05; Avg Score 7.4Eugie
  • Score 122; Stories 18; Avg Score 6.8Hugo
  • Score 113; Stories 19; Avg Score 5.9Nebula
  • Score 174; Stories 30; Avg Score 5.8Locus
  • Click here for a sortable table of all 15 guides
Not surprisingly, all five awards have higher average scores than any and all "year's best" anthologies and reviewers. More interesting is that the award scores happen to be in reverse chronological order by date when the finalists are announced (except for the Locus Award, though it's a subset of the Locus Recommended Reading List that does come out first). Perhaps the earlier award finalist lists influence the later awards.

Monday, January 29, 2018

2016 Best SF/F Short Fiction Publications

Continuing our analysis of the best science fiction and fantasy short fiction from 2016, we turn our attention to publications. Remember that in this context "best" just means "most-recommended by sources Rocket Stack Rank tracks."

Using the scores for 887 stories from the 2016 Best SF/F Short Fiction article and grouping the stories by publication, we show the top publications by average score in 2016. (To obtain word counts for this analysis, we filtered out stories that weren't from the 23 magazines and anthologies that RSR reviewed in full, leaving 799 stories; it's not fair to include a publication if we didn't consider all of their stories.)

Top six publications by average score:
  • Score 065; Stories 26; Avg Score 2.5: Tor Novella
  • Score 123; Stories 59; Avg Score 2.1: Clarkesworld
  • Score 028; Stories 14; Avg Score 2.0: Drowned Worlds
  • Score 149; Stories 77; Avg Score 1.9: Asimov's
  • Score 028; Stories 15; Avg Score 1.9: Bridging Infinity
  • Score 034; Stories 18; Avg Score 1.9: Starlit Wood
  • Click here for a sortable table of 23 publications
Of all the things we read in 2016, the Tor novellas were the most likely to get recommendations from other reviewers, be award finalists, and/or end up in "year's best" anthologies. This is all the more remarkable when you consider that some reviewers don't read them at all.

The pie chart shows paid anthologies comprise only 15% of the total publication word count but are 50% of the top six by average score, and two were edited by Jonathan Strahan (Drowned Worlds, Bridging Infinity). The over-representation of paid anthologies in the top six means the paid magazines are slightly under-represented (Tor Novella, Asimov's) at 33% rather than 47%, and the free magazines (Clarkesworld) are short one representative at 17% rather than 37%.

Saturday, January 27, 2018

2016 Best SF/F Short Fiction Authors

Continuing our analysis of the best science fiction and fantasy short fiction from 2016, we turn our attention to authors. Remember that in this context "best" just means "most-recommended by sources Rocket Stack Rank tracks."

Using the scores for 887 stories from the 2016 Best SF/F Short Fiction article and grouping the stories by author, here are the top authors by average score in 2016.

Top five authors with at least 2 stories by average score:
  • Score 21; Stories 3; Avg Score 7.0: Sam J. Miller
  • Score 14; Stories 2; Avg Score 7.0: Alastair Reynolds
  • Score 14; Stories 2; Avg Score 7.0: N.K. Jemisin
  • Score 23; Stories 4; Avg Score 5.8: Alyssa Wong
  • Score 11; Stories 2; Avg Score 5.5: Peter S. Beagle
  • Click here for a sortable table of 602 authors
For this analysis, a top author needed at least two stories to stand out because, as the pie chart shows, only 25% of authors had more than one story among the 887 surveyed.

Honorable mention goes to Rich Larson who had 15 stories with an average score of 2.3.

There are several different ways to create this list, but we think this is the best one. Here are a set of other rankings and an explanation of our thinking.

Friday, January 26, 2018

2016 Best SF/F Short Fiction

As everyone gets ready to start nominating works from 2017 for this year's Hugo Awards, we want to take one last look back at 2016, incorporating all the feedback from various reviewers, "year's best" anthologists, and awards that we thought were comprehensive. It's obviously too late to use for award nominations, since, by design, it comes after all the awards for that year are over, but it has good value to people who're just looking for good stories to read and don't mind reading slightly older ones.

In the future, we'll try to do this in the summer, but we decided to put this one out now, even if it's six months late.

We used recommendations from 5 SF/F awards, 5 "year's best" SF/F anthologies, and 5 prolific SF/F reviewers to compute scores for 887 stories. Sorting the stories by score identifies the best novellas, novelettes, and short stories of 2016 below. Grouping the stories by author, publication, and guide and calculating their average scores identifies the best of those in the next three articles.

Monday, January 15, 2018

January 2018 Ratings

5★ & 4★ Stories: 15; Time & Words: ◷8h:57m 💬161.2K
Recommended By Stories: 44; Time & Words: ◷21h 💬379.2K
Total Stories: 63; Time & Words: ◷26h 💬483K
Read How to Use RSR on the sidebar or this link to use this post.