We told you it was Stephanie Hans Day on Bleeding Cool. And Stephanie Hans and Kieron Gillen have just won the British Fantasy Award for best comic book for their Image Comics series, Die . A comic book series that is, basically, what happened to the kids at the end of the Dungeons & Dragons cartoon. Warning, it's not nice.
And as much as I enjoy the juxtaposition of mundane reality with a twist on a classic Tolkein fantasy setting, it is Hans' artwork in Die that really stands out, often finding myself lost in the world – or world – she portrays. And as a result, a sucker for the World Fantasy Awards who like that kind of thing. You can find her direct shop right here.
Die beat out nominations for Basketful of Heads, The Ozone Diary, B.P.R.D. The Devil You Know, 2000AD and DCeased. The award was presented by Jody Houser.
Kieron Gillen tweeted "This is an amazing honour. Stephanie and I are totally humbled. Thanks to everyone's congratulations! You are all very kind."
He's not humbled at all. It's just something people say, isn't it? Stephanie Hans was more honest, tweeting out "Victory!" before succumbing and saying "I am so happy and humbled. This is a great way to start the year :)"
Also, in the awards, Rebellion Publishing, publishers of 2000AD and Judge Dredd Megazine won the award for Best Independent Press. This is the first time a predominantly comic book publisher has won that award. They also won Best Anthology for one of their prose publications, New Suns: Original Speculative Fiction by People of Colour, was recognised last night, adding to a list of its awards.
The British Fantasy Awards are awarded annually by the British Fantasy Society (BFS), first in 1976. Prior to that, they were known as The August Derleth Fantasy Awards. First awarded only to novels in 1972 – the winner being The Knight of Swords by Michael Moorcock, the number of award categories increased and in 1976 the BFS renamed them collectively the British Fantasy Awards. The current award categories are Best Fantasy Novel (the Robert Holdstock Award), Best Horror Novel (the August Derleth Award), Best Novella, Best Short Story, Best Independent Press, Best Artist, Best Anthology, Best Collection, Best Comic/Graphic Novel, Best Non-Fiction, and Best Newcomer (the Sydney J. Bounds Award), while the Karl Edward Wagner Award for "important contribution to the genre or the Society" is given at the discretion of the BFS committee. The membership of the BFS vote to determine the shortlists of the awards, the winners being decided by juries.
Previous winners of the Comic Book/Graphic Novel awards were Locke & Key, Batman: Whatever Happened To The Caped Crusader, At The Mountains Of Madness, Saga, Demeter, Through The Woods, Bitch Planet, Monstress and Widdershins.
The full list of winners and nominations runs below.
Best Fantasy Novel (the Robert Holdstock Award)
WINNER: The Bone Ships, RJ Barker (Orbit)
The Ten Thousand Doors of January, Alix E. Harrow (Orbit)
The Migration, Helen Marshall (Titan)
The Poison Song, Jen Williams (Headline)
Best Horror Novel (the August Derleth Award)
WINNER: The Reddening, Adam Nevill (Ritual Limited)
The Plague Stones, James Brogden (Titan)
The Institute, Stephen King (Hodder & Stoughton)
The Twisted Ones, T. Kingfisher (Titan)
Mistletoe, Alison Littlewood (Jo Fletcher)
The Migration, Helen Marshall (Titan)
WINNER: Ormeshadow, Priya Sharma (Tor.com Publishing)
"Butcher's Table", Nathan Ballingrud (Wounds)
Ragged Alice, Gareth L. Powell (Tor.com Publishing)
The Deep, Rivers Solomon, Daveed Diggs, William Hutson & Jonathan Snipes (Gallery)
The Survival of Molly Southbourne, Tade Thompson (Tor.com Publishing)
The Ascent to Godhood, JY Yang (Tor.com Publishing)
Best Short Story
WINNER: "The Pain-Eater's Daughter", Laura Mauro (Sing Your Sadness Deep)
"Dendrochronology", Penny Jones (The Woods)
"I Say (I Say, I Say)", Robert Shearman (Tales from the Shadow Booth, Vol. 3)
"Tomorrow, When I Was Young", Julie Travis (Eibonvale)
WINNER: Sing Your Sadness Deep, Laura Mauro (Undertow)
This House of Wounds, Georgina Bruce (Undertow)
Of Wars, and Memories, and Starlight, Aliette de Bodard (Subterranean)
The Boughs Withered When I Told Them My Dreams, Maura McHugh (NewCon)
Growing Things, Paul Tremblay (Titan)
WINNER: New Suns: Original Speculative Fiction for People of Color, Nisi Shawl, ed. (Solaris)
A Secret Guide to Fighting Elder Gods, Jennifer Brozek, ed. (Pulse)
Once Upon a Parsec: The Book of Alien Fairy Tales, David Gullen, ed. (NewCon)
Wonderland, Marie O'Regan & Paul Kane, eds. (Titan)
The Woods, Phil Sloman, ed. (Hersham Horror)
The Big Book of Classic Fantasy, Ann & Jeff VanderMeer, eds. (Vintage)
Best Independent Press
WINNER: The Dark Fantastic: Race and the Imagination from Harry Potter to the Hunger Games, Ebony Elizabeth Thomas (New York University Press)
Joanna Russ, Gwyneth Jones (University of Illinois Press)
The Pleasant Profession of Robert A. Heinlein, Farah Mendlesohn (Unbound)
"Notes from the Borderland", Lynda E Rucker (Black Static 9-10/20)
The Full Lid, Alasdair Stuart
Coffinmaker's Blues: Collected Writings on Terror, Stephen Volk (PS)
Best Magazine / Periodical
Gingernuts of Horror
Magazine of Fantasy & Science Fiction
Shoreline of Infinity
WINNER: Ben Baldwin
Best Comic / Graphic Novel
WINNER: DIE, Kieron Gillen & Stephanie Hans (Image)
Basketful of Heads #1, Joe Hill, Leomacs & Dave Stewart (DC)
The Ozone Diary, Tero Mielonen & Pentti Otsamo (Luna)
B.P.R.D. The Devil You Know, Vol. 3: Ragna Rok, Mike Mignola, Scott Allie, Laurence Campbell, et al. (Dark Horse)
2000AD, Matt Smith, ed. (Rebellion)
DCeased #1-6, Tom Taylor, Trevor Hairsine, Stefano Gaudiano, et al. (DC)
Breaking the Glass Slipper
Best Film / Television Production
Game of Thrones: "The Long Night"
Watchmen: "It's Summer and We're Running Out of Ice"
The Witcher: "Rare Species"
Best Newcomer (the Sydney J Bounds Award)
WINNER: Ta-Nehisi Coates, for The Water Dancer (One World)
Alix E. Harrow, for The Ten Thousand Doors of January (Orbit)
Penny Jones, for Suffer Little Children (Black Shuck)
Tamsyn Muir, for Gideon the Ninth (Tor.com Publishing)
Nina Oram, for The Joining (Luna)
Karl Edward Wagner Award