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William Atheling Jr Award
Subcategory of Awards Australian Awards Subcategory of Ditmar Awards
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First awarded in 1976.

Not all the works for which this award is given are about Australian science fiction. If, however, it has been awarded to an Australian writer, that award is included here with a note about the work for which it was given.

The award was not given in 2002.


2020 winner Grant Watson for reviews on FictionMachine.
2019 winner y separately published work icon Capitalocene Dreams : Dark Tales of Near Futures & The 21st Century Catastrophe : Hyper-capitalism and Severe Climate Change in Science Fiction Cat Sparks , Perth : 2018 16429751 2018 single work thesis

'This thesis investigates the research question: What is the role of speculative fiction in a climate changed world? The short story collection: Capitalocene Dreams: Dark Tales of Near Futures explores life on the fringes of disintegrating Australian enclaves during the dying days of neoliberal excess. The exegesis: The 21st Century Catastrophe: Hyper-capitalism and Severe Climate Change in Science Fiction, contrasts ecocatastrophe science fiction of the sixties and seventies with contemporary climate or Anthropocene fiction.'

Source: Curtin University.

for 'The 21st Century Catastrophe: Hyper-capitalism and Severe Climate Change in Science Fiction' (exegesis component).
2017 winner y separately published work icon The Rebirth of Rapunzel : A Mythic Biography of the Maiden in the Tower Kate Forsyth , Mawson : FableCroft Publishing , 2016 9476898 2016 selected work criticism essay

'A unique collection presenting Kate Forsyth’s extensive academic research into the ‘Rapunzel’ fairy tale, alongside several other pieces related to fairy tales and folklore.

'This book is not your usual reference work, but a complex and engaging exploration of the subject matter, written with Forsyth’s distinctive flair.' (Publication summary)

2016 winner y separately published work icon Letters to Tiptree Alisa Krasnostein (editor), Alexandra Pierce (editor), Yokine : Twelfth Planet Press , 2015 8815653 2015 anthology correspondence

'In celebration of the 100th Anniversary of Alice Sheldon’s birth, and in recognition of the enormous influence of both Tiptree and Sheldon on the field, Twelfth Planet Press is publishing a selection of thoughtful letters written by science fiction and fantasy’s writers, editors, critics and fans to celebrate her, to recognise her work, and maybe in some cases to finish conversations set aside nearly thirty years ago.' (Publication summary)

2015 winner Tansy Rayner Roberts For 'Does Sex Make Science Fiction Soft?' in Uncanny Magazine, no. 1.
2013 winner Tansy Rayner Roberts For “Historically Authentic Sexism in Fantasy. Let’s Unpack That.” (
2011 winner Tansy Rayner Roberts For 'A Modern Woman's Guide to Classic Who'.
2009 winner Popular Genres and the Australian Literary Community : The Case of Fantasy Fiction Kim Wilkins , 2008 single work criticism
— Appears in: Journal of Australian Studies , June vol. 32 no. 2 2008; (p. 265-278)

'Australian fantasy fiction is a highly successful field of Australian writing both nationally and internationally, and yet it occupies uncertain territory in the Australian literary community. In many ways, it is the opposite of that community's default notion of Australian writing: it is popular, not literary; international, not local; fantastic, not realism. These incongruities make it an excellent case study for examining how the Australian literary community interacts with popular fiction. ' (Author's abstract)

2006 winner Robert Hood for 'Divided Kingdom: King Kong vs Godzilla'.
2005 joint winner Jason Nahrung for 'Why Are Publishers Afraid of Horror'
2005 joint winner Robert Hood For a review of The Weight of Water
2004 winner Bruce Gillespie
2003 winner Jonathan Strahan
2001 winner Simon Oxwell For Waking Henson: A Jim Henson Retrospective (written with Grant Watson).
2001 winner Grant Watson For Waking Henson: A Jim Henson Retrospective (written with Simon Oxwell).
2000 joint winner y separately published work icon Strange Constellations : A History of Australian Science Fiction Russell Blackford , Van Ikin , Sean McMullen , Westport : Greenwood Press , 1999 Z126983 1999 reference criticism 'A study of authors who have devoted a substantial part of their writing careers to S[cience] F[iction]'. Takes an inclusive approach to the genre, encompassing works such as SF romances, utopian and distopian novels, political and military thrillers, fantasy and supernatural horror. The overall emphasis is on works which take a scientific view so there is no comprehensive coverage of fantasy and horror.
2000 joint winner y separately published work icon Women of Other Worlds : Excursions Through Science Fiction and Feminism Helen Merrick (editor), Tess Williams (editor), Nedlands : UWA Publishing , 1999 Z844554 1999 anthology short story poetry extract prose interview correspondence criticism science fiction
1999 winner y separately published work icon The MUP Encyclopaedia of Australian Science Fiction and Fantasy Paul Collins (editor), Steven Paulsen (editor), Sean McMullen (editor), Carlton South : Melbourne University Press , 1998 Z83205 1998 reference bibliography biography
1998 winner y separately published work icon The Encyclopedia of Fantasy John Clute , John Grant , London : Orbit , 1997 Z485621 1997 single work criticism biography For the section 'Australia: Australian Contemporary Fantasy' by Sean McMullen and Steven Paulsen.
1996 winner The Hunt for Australian Horror Sean McMullen , Steven Paulsen , 1994 single work criticism
— Appears in: Aurealis : Australian Fantasy & Science Fiction , no. 14 1994; (p. 45-54) The Aurealis Mega OZ SF Anthology 1999;
1993 winner Sean McMullen For 'Australian SF Art Turns 50' (Eidolon no.7, Summer 1992)
1992 winner Sean McMullen For 'Going Commercial'.
1991 winner Bruce Gillespie For 'The Non-SF Novels of Philip K. Dick' (ANZAPA).
1989 winner Russell Blackford For articles in Australian SF Review.
1988 winner Van Ikin For 'Mirror Reversals and the Tolkien Writing Game' (Science Fiction no. 25).
1987 winner Russell Blackford For 'Debased and Lascivious' (no publication information).
1986 winner George Turner For 'Neuromancer' [review?]
1985 winner y separately published work icon In the Heart or in the Head : An Essay in Time Travel George Turner , Carlton : Norstrilia Press , 1984 Z426790 1984 single work autobiography criticism

'In the Heart or in the Head is a brilliant literary memoir in which George Turner chronicles his chaotic growing-up in a family for whom fact and fantasy were equally acceptable and often indistinguishable. It is also the record of his development as one of Australia’s finest novelists and his entanglement with science fiction.'

Source: Publisher's blurb (Orion ed.).

1983 winner Kirth Gersen - The Other Demon Prince Terry Dowling , 1982 single work column
— Appears in: Science Fiction : A Review of Speculative Literature , vol. 4 no. 2 (Issue 11) 1982; (p. 55-66)
1982 winner Bruce Gillespie For 'Sing a Song of Daniel', (SF Commentary nos.62/66, June 1981)
1981 joint winner George Turner For 'Samuel Delany: Victim of Great Applause, published in SF Commentary no.58, February 1980.
1981 joint winner George Turner For 'Frederik Pohl as a Creator of Future Societies', published in The Stellar Gauge.
1980 winner Jack R. Herman For 'Paradox as Paradigm: A Review of Thomas Covenant the Unbeliever by Stephen Donaldson', in Forerunner Quarterly, May 1979.
1977 winner George Turner For 'And Great Whales Created God', SF Commentary, no.47 (Aug. 1976) (review of British writer Ian Watson's The Jonah Kit].
1976 winner George Turner For 'Paradigm and Pattern: Form and Meaning in The Dispossessed', SF Commentary no.41/42 (Apr 1972).