BFS Best Novel winner returns award
Sam Stone, whose novel Demon Dance (The House of Murky Depths) was voted the August Derlith Fantasy Award for Best Novel at the British Fantasy Awards earlier this month, has returned the award after a controversy over the awards.
Some members of the British Fantasy Society criticized the fact that several of this year’s winners, including Ms. Stone, have a personal or professional connection with Society Chairman David Howe and his imprint, Telos Publishing.
On her blog, Ms. Stone said in returning the award, that “I do not wish to be seen as the winner that tore the British Fantasy Society in two. The society means too much to me and I cannot allow this controversy to taint the integrity of those involved. Therefore, I am returning the award for Best Novel.”
In addition, David Howe tendered his resignation as chairman even though the British Fantasy Society Committee, in a message on the BFS website from Society President Ramsey Campbell, said that the committee wished “to state for the record that it is our firm belief that no corruption or wrongdoing took place during the administration of the British Fantasy Awards, and that in this respect all awards should still stand as presented.”
Specifically in respect to Mr. Howe, Mr. Campbell said in the statement that “David did not have any involvement with the nominations, short listing or the voting process, other than with the awards administration (procuring the statuettes, plaques, etc) and we are happy that the voting/counting process was 100 percent accurate within the scope of the current rules. We therefore completely exonerate David from any wrongdoing in the administration of the 2011 Awards.
Graham Joyce was named acting chairman after Mr. Howe’s resignation.
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