As announced at Horrorscope, the 2009 Ditmar Awards for Australian SF, fantasy and horror have been awarded at Conjecture in Adelaide.

The Ditmar Awards have been awarded annually since 1969 at the Australian National Science Fiction Convention (the “Natcon”) to recognise achievement in Australian science fiction (including fantasy and horror) and science fiction fandom. The award is similar to the Hugo Award but on a national rather than international scale.

The award is named after Martin James Ditmar (“Dick”) Jenssen, a fan from Melbourne. At various times in its history the award has included international categories, but in the last several years all categories have been open only to Australian work (with minor exceptions). Categories include both professional and fan categories, focusing on fiction but also including some artistic and general achievement as well as several “production” awards.

The 2009 winners are:

Best Novel
Tender Morsels by Margo Lanagan (Allen & Unwin)

Best Novella or Novelette
Painlessness by Kirstyn McDermott (GUD #2)

Best Short Story (tie)
This Is Not My Story by Dirk Flinthart (Andromeda Spaceways Inflight Magazine #37)
The Goosle by Margo Lanagan (The Del Rey Book of Science Fiction, ed. Ellen Datlow)

Best Collected Work
Dreaming Again, edited by Jack Dann (Harper Voyager)

Best Artwork
Tales from Outer Suburbia by Shaun Tan

Best Fan Writer
Robert Hood (for Undead Backbrain)

Best Fan Artist
Cat Sparks for Scary Food cookbook

Best Fan Publication
ASif! (Australian Speculative Fiction In Focus), edited by Alisa Krasnostein & Gene Melzack (Twelfth Planet Press)

Best Achievement
Angela Challis for Black: Australian Dark Culture Magazine and Brimstone Press.

Best New Talent
Felicity Dowker

William Atheling Jr Award for Criticism or Review
“Popular genres and the Australian literary community: the case of fantasy fiction” by Kim Wilkins (in Journal of Australian Studies)

A. Bertram Chandler Award
Rosaleen Love

Peter McNamara Award
Sean Williams

You can see the full list of nominations here at the Conjecture website.

Congratulations to all the winners and those nominated. It’s great to see Aussie speculative fiction so vibrant and varied. One of these days I’ll win me a Ditmar Award. Oh yes, I will.