World Fantasy Award Design Competition; RPG Newsletter #49; Geeks Out Seeking Bloggers


Resource Diversity:  The SFWA Forums brought my attention to an excellent list of resources for those interested in diversity in the field.  Forum posts are private to SFWA;  permission to link was requested and granted. The resource was compiled by writer and librarian Marta Murvosh and can be found here.  And you can learn a bit more about Marta here.

Customized Game Controller for Player with Cerebral Palsy


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Honest Trailers.  Force Awakens.  ‘Nuff Said.

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Steve Stiles wants to remind you all – he’s still here!


Ed Greenwood on Baldur’s Gate Controversy (not a controversy).  (Once a month we publish a three chapter excerpt from Ed’s new multi-author Hellmaw series)

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Stuart Flynn Announces Post-Apocalyptic Fantasy Novel – Children of the Different (doing all of the things it is recommended that indie-authors do!)

It’s All About the Style – Novelization Style

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Dragoncon Announces SF Awards 


Are We Living in the Matrix?  Asimov Memorial Debate Tackles the Question.  (Or did they?)

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Blue Origin Makes Third Powered Landing – which was way cool until –

SpaceX Finally Lands on its Floating Platform  (Who is with me?  I want to see a cage match in space featuring Jeff Bezos and Elon Musk!)

Infectuious Art – Painting with Bacteria



World Fantasy Awards Administration
Jo Fletcher   •   Rodger Turner   •   Ellen Datlow   •   Gordon Van Gelder   •   Peter Pautz

The World Fantasy Awards Administration has decided that it is time to change the trophy for the World Fantasy Awards. We appreciate Gahan Wilson’s design, in use for more than four decades, and his contributions to the World Fantasy Convention and the Awards.

Between now and September 30, 2016 the Awards Administration will welcome submissions from those in the artists community proficient in the three-dimensional arts for a new physical trophy for the World Fantasy Award. The ideal design will be simple and elegant, representing both fantasy and horror, without bearing any physical resemblance to any person, living or dead.

The Awards Administration and the Board of the World Fantasy Convention are not fund-holding entities. Each convention is run by a discrete group of people and is expected to be self-funding and non-profit-making, so this is not a commercial opportunity for the winning artist. The copyright of the piece must remain with the WFA for the lifetime of the award.

Whilst there will be no monetary remuneration, as the WFA is not a financial body and does not hold funds of any kind, the winning artist will be publicised as widely as possible. As well, the winning artist will, for the next ten years, receive two non-transferable complimentary memberships to the World Fantasy Convention. The artist will receive two complimentary tickets to the 2016 banquet, and complimentary space in the Columbus art room. The winning artist will also receive discounted art space for the ten years after 2016.

Three runners-up will receive staff memberships to the 2016 World Fantasy Convention.

Conditions for Entry

Entry in the competition is open to all artists already proficient in 3-D arts working within the fantasy/horror community. Design proposals must be submitted by midnight EDT on Friday, September 30, 2016.

The award statuette will need to fit on a base capable of displaying the name of the award recipient, the year and the award category. The size should be similar to that of the current award (approx. 10″ high x 4″ wide x 5″ deep (or 25 cm x 10 cm x13 cm)). It will also need to be a robust piece of work that can travel safely—in the past, awards have been sent to South America, Great Britain, Europe and Australia—so they cannot be fragile, fiddly, prone to coming apart or changing form with age or extremes of temperature. In the world we live in, they are routinely subjected to security search, so please bear that in mind as well.

All submissions should include:
1. Drawings, sketches, and, if you are shortlisted, a fabricated example of the award.

  1. The cost estimate to produce each individual award. Please note that between ten and twenty awards may be needed in any one year so there will be a cost implication for each convention which pays the commercial house for copies of the award. There must be space for a plaque with the details of the specific award, the winner(s) and the year.
  2. The winning design will be kept secret until the 2016 World Fantasy Convention in Columbus, OH, and we will therefore require strict confidentiality until the awards are announced at the banquet on Sunday 30th October 2016.
  3. We regret that competition entries cannot be returned.
  4. The World Fantasy Administration reserves the right to select no entry as the winner.
  5. Initial proposals, including JPG, PNG, GIF or TIFF images of your designs, should be submitted electronically to . Please remember to include your name, contact information and a link to past three-dimensional samples of your past work.

Following a review of all proposals, up to four artists will be asked to prepare a maquette (aka a scale model) for review. It is expected that the final choice will be chosen from this group.

Everyone who is invited by the Awards Administration to submit (not just inquiries) a viable entry will receive a membership (at staff rate) to Columbus or a supporting membership (if you are unable to attend).


A lot of people have been asking questions; before querying, check to see whether your inquiry has been covered below.

  1. You note that there is a “cost implication”. Without an actual dollar amount or preferred range, this isn’t very helpful. The Montreal WorldCon spent about $300 per trophy. The Academy Awards run about $500 per statue.
  2. It’s a little difficult to answer this until we know what medium/media the new award is going to made of; as a guideline, the current awards are costing something in the region of $250. Because there are often multiple awards, it’s important we keep the cost down as much as we can.
  3. There is no time to create the award—you are asking someone to make 10-20 awards in less than a month. This is not reasonable.
  4. No, we anticipate the awards will be produced professionally, as they always have been. All we are asking for is one, from which a mould will be taken.
  5. There are multiple legal options to allow the artist to maintain the copyright, while at the same time protecting World Fantasy’s right to use and control the use of the image. Why aren’t you considering these?
  6. Actually, we are, now that we have been informed there is a way we alone can retain use of the World Fantasy Award, whilst still leaving the copyright with the artist. We are currently investigating the legal ramifications.
  7. Why can’t you pay the artist for creating the award?
  8. The World Fantasy Award Administration and the Board of the World Fantasy Convention are not fund-holding entities; we have no sources of revenue and no money at all flows through our hands. Each convention is set up as not-for-profit and has its own funding mechanisms, but no one gets paid for working on the convention.
  9. I heard Gahan Wilson got paid for the original award?
  10. No, Gahan never asked for or received payment. He volunteered his services when the World Fantasy Award was first being set up, as he was a great supporter of the field and the convention and has remained so.
  11. I can’t get to the World Fantasy Convention—can I exchange my tickets for cash?
  12. No, sorry.
  13. Will the artist’s signature be included on the statuette to show who the creator is?
  14. Certainly, if the artist signs it! Gahan Wilson’s signature appears on the current trophy.
  15. How big must the plaque be?
  16. Something in the region of 3″ wide x 2″ high (or 8 cm by 5 cm) should do it.
  17. Would the artist be involved with the award when it goes to production?
  18. With the first production run it would be useful if the artist were to be involved, but it’s not essential.
  19. When will you present the new award?
  20. The intention is to present the design at the World Fantasy Convention in Columbus, OH, USA, at the banquet on Sunday 30th October. It is expected that we will be able to present the first new awards the following year, in 2017. This year’s winners will receive a certificate at the banquet, with the actual statuette to follow when they are completed.

If you have any questions, please contact the World Fantasy Awards Administration at


RPGnet Newsletter #49
April 5, 2016

New Columns

Just one new Column last week: Christopher Cecil’s newest Fuzzy Thinking: “Dear Spell Book,”.

If you find yourself with some extra time on your hands from the light Column week, why not check out RPGnet’s great Actual Play archive? Don’t miss DiesIrae’s Rogue Trader Actual Play, which is consistently fantastic.

New Reviews

Last week, Sir Corvus reviewed Alpha Blue, an R-rated science fiction RPG.

RPGnet also posted a passel of new reviews from Antonios S:

Threads You Might Have Missed

Many newish RPG systems (and not a few older ones) feature a form of consumable, mechanically- or narratively-significant metagame currency. What is a GM to do, however, when their players refuse to interact with that part of the system? Check out “My group doesn’t really use ‘Fate Points’ or ‘Bennies'” for some helpful answers.

Speaking of modern RPG trends (how was that for a segue?), “[PDFs vs. Physical Books] What is generally accepted?” features some useful commentary on the uses for the various forms that RPG books can take, and how a gaming group might accommodate one form of media over the other.

The transportation of present-day people to earlier or fantastical times is an extremely common plot device in geek media. For some thoughtful commentary on the problems such a group might face, check out “Modern humans displaced to a fantasy world, what sort of challenges would there be?”

Sign Off

Have a good week, everyone.

  • Iustum
    Newsletter Editor


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