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Baen Fantasy Adventure Award Finalist!!

I've started and rewritten this sentence eight times. I give up on being clever, I'm too freaking excited for clever. We're going to go with ALL CAPS EXCITEMENT!! Also, mad cackling. I still can't quite believe my story is a finalist. It's definitely real, I've read the email and the Facebook post easily a dozen times and the words haven't changed, but it still doesn't quite feel real.


Annual contest continues to highlight new names and big adventures in the fantasy genre—with entries from all around the world!

RIVERDALE, NEW YORK, June 30, 2023—Baen Books formally announced this year’s finalists for the Baen Fantasy Adventure Award today.

First launched in 2014, the Baen Fantasy Adventure Award has sought to celebrate original fantasy short stories which, despite coming from a range of fantasy subgenres from sword and sorcery to urban fantasy, focus on heroics, high stakes, and adventure.

Judges for the award were five members of the editorial staff of Baen Books, as well as special guest judge Tim Powers, and all entries were judged anonymously. The contest occurs annually and looks for original fantasy short stories that range in style from epic fantasy, heroic fantasy, sword and sorcery, and urban fantasy.

“We got to read an excellent and eclectic array of stories this year. It’s great to see the fantasy genre thriving,” said Baen publisher Toni Weisskopf.

“There are some fine stories here,” added Tim Powers. Powers is a two-time winner of the World Fantasy Award and critically acclaimed author of nearly three dozen novels.

The finalists for the 2023 Baen Fantasy Adventure Award are:

“The Hitchhiker on Souls’ Road” by Ashley Agbay “A Dragon’s True Purpose” by Ceci Black “The Runner” by Sidney Blaylock, Jr. “A Tale of Three Dragons” by Carrie Callahan “Winter Offerings” by Garick Cooke “Compact” by Arlen Feldman “The Knight, The Witch, and The Farmboy” by C. H. Hung “The Dreaded Song of Klau” by Jason Lairamore “Silver Spears and Sea-Songs” by Wendy Nikel “Fall From Grace” by Melissa Olthoff “Once Given a Name” by Shami Stovall

This year’s winner will be announced and honored at the Baen Books Traveling Roadshow at Dragon Con 2023, in Atlanta, GA on Aug. 31 – Sept. 4, 2023. In addition to the award and the trophy, the winning story will be published at and the author paid professional rates.

Past winners of the Baen Fantasy Adventure Award have gone on to further career successes. The 2020 winner G. Scott Huggins later also won the Jim Baen Memorial Award, and the 2021 winner M. Elizabeth Ticknor went on to win Writers of the Future.

Baen Books is known for its New York Times bestselling science fiction and fantasy, including David Weber’s Honor Harrington series, Eric Flint’s Ring of Fire alternate histories, Larry Correia’s Monster Hunter International urban fantasies, and Lois McMaster Bujold’s Penric stories. Baen’s physical books are distributed by Simon & Schuster, while their ebooks are sold at numerous online venues, including their own website.

I'm humbled to be included in that talented group of authors, and so very excited. It's been days, and I'm still over here randomly cackling like a dumbass!!

In writing news, SB3 is at 88K, and the Salvage Bunny crew is about to step foot on the Asur homeworld for the first time. Things will go badly, mwahahahaha! I'm also working on a horror short story with my evil author twin, Nick Steverson (I mean, really, do I need to include his last name at this point?), and then we've got a secret short story that needs to be the best short story we've ever written for REASONS. I'm also editing a secret project for my writing mentor Casey Moores, also for REASONS. That's a lot of also's but I haven't caffeinated yet, so ya'll are lucky these are mostly coherent sentences LOL. OH!! And for what's releasing soon, like, this month soon, how about the epic AF conclusion to the space hyena trilogy?!

Release the sparkly missiles!! (Aurelian or Maddy, probably). Out on 21 Jul, so if you haven't read the first two, you've got plenty of time. No excuses!! (Maddy, definitely). Until next week, folks!!

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