Wednesday, December 14, 2011

Anne Leinonen Wins Portti Competition

Congratulations to Anne Leinonen who has won the Portti 2011 sf short story competition! Portti is a juried annual competition for new science fiction and fantasy short stories, with cash prizes. It’s organized by the Portti magazine.

This year’s top 3 was:
  1. Oliverin kirja, by Anne Leinonen (2 000 €)
  2. Luottokoira vain sinun rakkaudellesi, by M.G. Soikkeli (700 €)
  3. (tie) Musta tähti, by Tuomas Saloranta (300 €)
    Pedot liikkuvat pimeässä, by Marika Riikonen (300 €)
The jury of the competition comprised Portti editor Raimo Nikkonen, professor Frans Mäyrä, and editor Kanerva Eskola. This year there were 214 entries in the competition (which is significantly more than in previous years).

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Friday, December 09, 2011

Sinisalo Researched

A research paper about Johanna Sinisalo’s novel Sankarit has been published by the Research Centre for Contemporary Culture in Jyväskylä. The paper by Eliisa Pitkäsalo is titled “Kalevalaiset sankarit nykymaailman menossa” (“The Kalevala Heroes in Contemporary World”) and it can be downloaded from the centre’s site (only in Finnish, though).

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Sunday, December 04, 2011

Mariehamn in 2016

This is what happens when you let Eemeli out (in this case, to Smofcon) without proper supervision, is all I’m saying.

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Thursday, December 01, 2011

Åbocalypse Comics Anthology Announced

The Turku Comics Club has announced that the theme of next year’s comics anthology is very sfnal-sounding “Åbocalypse”. The black-and-white anthology will be published at the Helsinki book fair next October, and the deadline for submissions is April 30. More info from the anthology editor Maijastiina Vilenius.

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Pépites Award to Seita Parkkola

Finnish author Seita Parkkola has won the “Pépites” award in the children/YA category for her novel Viima (“Une dernière chance” in French).

Viima is a middle-grade/YA novel that could be classified as “Finnish Weird”: the world in the novel is seemingly our everyday world, but soon it becomes clear that some things differ from our reality quite a bit. Viima, the main character, is 12 years old, and has been branded as a troublemaker. So he’s been sent to the School of Possibilities where “troubled children are put right”. The story turns towards the dystopian as the kids are constantly surveilled on and off school grounds, required to participate in mandatory after-school activities, and assigned friends and even girl and boy friends by the school. Parents are charged for every infraction of the child, and those whose parents can’t pay seem to disappear, never to be seen again.

Viima was nominated for the Finlandia Junior award (the Finnish equivalent of the Newberry award) in 2006. The novel has been translated in English as The School of Possibilities (review). A couple of excerpts (by a different translator) are available online.

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