Thursday, March 31, 2016

2016 Derringer Award Results

The Short Mystery Fiction Society's Derringer Awards, honoring outstanding published stories and people who've contributed greatly to the genre, are determined by a January 1–March 30 process that considers the previous year.

The Awards Coordinator first posts the results to Shortmystery. Then the public announcement appears here.

For each category below, we show the winner first, then the alphabetized finalists:

Best Flash Story (Up to 1,000 words)
  • Vy Kava, "Hero" (Red Dawn: Best New England Crime Stories 2016: Level Best Books, November 2015)
  • Jack Bates, "The Hard Screw" (Near to the Knuckle, August 6, 2015)
  • Craig Faustus Buck, "Heavy Debt" (Mondays are Murder: Akashic Books, August 10, 2015)
  • Barb Goffman, "The Wrong Girl" (Flash and Bang: A Short Mystery Fiction Society Anthology: Untreed Reads, October 2015)
  • John Weagly, "Trash Pick-Up" (Near to the Knuckle, September 24, 2015)

Best Short Story (1,001–4,000 words)
  • Meg Opperman, "Twilight Ladies" (Ellery Queen's Mystery Magazine, March/April 2015)
  • Shelly Dickson Carr, "Words Can Kill" (Red Dawn: Best New England Crime Stories 2016: Level Best Books, November 2015)
  • Nikki Dolson, "Joe Park's Little Girl" (Mystery Weekly, September 7, 2015)
  • Chris Knopf, "Kill Switch" (Red Dawn: Best New England Crime Stories 2016: Level Best Books, November 2015)
  • William Burton McCormick, "Pompo's Disguise" (Ellery Queen's Mystery Magazine, March/April 2015)

Best Long Story (4,001–8,000 words)
  • John M. Floyd, "Dentonville" (Ellery Queen's Mystery Magazine, November 2015)
  • Ron Collins, "The White Game" (Fiction River: Hidden in Crime: WMG Publishing, November 2015)
  • Katia Lief, "The Orchid Grower" (Ellery Queen's Mystery Magazine, November 2015)
  • Robert Lopresti, "Shooting at Firemen" (Alfred Hitchcock's Mystery Magazine, July/August 2015)
  • Elizabeth Zelvin, "The Man in the Dick Tracy Hat" (Alfred Hitchcock's Mystery Magazine, June 2015)

Best Novelette (8,001–20,000 words)
  • John M. Floyd, "Driver" (The Strand Magazine, February-May 2015)
  • Jane Haddam, "Crazy Cat Ladies" (Ellery Queen's Mystery Magazine, February 2015)
  • Richard Helms, "Shooting Stars" (Ellery Queen's Mystery Magazine, September/October 2015)
  • Gordon Hopkins, "Jack Daniels and Associates: The Whiplash Brokers" (Kindle Worlds, March 2015)
  • Travis Richardson, "Quack and Dwight" (Jewish Noir: Contemporary Tales of Crime and Other Dark Deeds: PM Press, November 2015)

And a committee of the SMFS Officers, Awards Coordinator, and two members-at-large awarded the Edward D. Hoch Memorial Golden Derringer (Lifetime Achievement) to:
  • Michael Bracken

Winners can obtain certificate images for Web display and printout and submit acceptance videos by emailing Gerald So (G_SO at YAHOO dot COM).

The 2016 Derringer medal presentation, by 2009 Best Novelette winner and two-time previous finalist O'Neil De Noux, will be during Bouchercon 2016 opening ceremonies, Thursday, September 15 in New Orleans, Louisiana. Vy Kava, Meg Opperman, John M. Floyd, and Michael Bracken are scheduled to be on hand to accept.

UPDATE: Our Bouchercon 2016 recap includes coverage of the Derringer presentation, featuring video of Michael Bracken's acceptance speech.

Tuesday, March 15, 2016

Society Members' News

The following members sent in publication news this month:
  • John M. Floyd, "Trapped", Woman's World (March 28, 2016)
    • “A King's Ransom”, Sherlock Holmes Mystery Magazine #19 (February 18, 2016)
  • John R. Lindermuth, "A Clue with Double Meaning", Mystery Weekly Magazine (March 2016, free email story of the week March 28)
  • Josh Pachter's Dutch-to-English translation of "The Lighthouse" by Hilde Vandermeeren, Ellery Queen's Mystery Magazine (March/April 2016)
  • Jacqueline Seewald, "Letter of the Law", Sherlock Holmes Mystery Magazine #19 (February 18, 2016)

Email news for next month's post to G_SO at YAHOO dot COM.

Tuesday, March 8, 2016

Eyes on the Prize

As Society members vote to determine the Derringer winners through March 30, here's a look at the 2016 Derringer medals, currently in the possession of SMFS Award Plans member Art Taylor, to be handed off to presenter O'Neil De Noux shortly before opening ceremonies of Bouchercon 2016, September 15–18 in New Orleans:

Photo by Art Taylor (click on image to enlarge)

Friday, March 4, 2016

Mystery Scene's Bill Crider reviews Flash and Bang

Society member and Mystery Scene short story columnist Bill Crider reviewed the first SMFS-member anthology, Untreed Reads' Flash and Bang, in the Winter 2016 issue (No. 143, page 49). The review also appears on the Mystery Scene website.

Our thanks to Bill and Mystery Scene editor-in-chief Kate Stine.

Two clarifications:
  • The Society was founded in 1996, not '86.
  • The $22 price listed in the review is for the large-print trade paperback. The standard-print trade paperback is $16 and the ebook $4.99.

As part of Untreed Reads' sixth anniversary celebration, this month all versions are 30% off.

Tuesday, March 1, 2016

2017 Derringer Awards Voting

The SMFS's annual Derringer Awards process (January 1–April 30, 2017) culminates in an April 1–29 membership vote determining the winners. To vote, or participate in any of the process, however, your Shortmystery membership must date back to at least December 31, 2016.

If you meet this membership cutoff, you may subscribe to the 2017 Derringers Voting Yahoo! Group.

Important: To expedite verification of your voting eligibility, be sure to subscribe to the Derringers voting group with your existing Shortmystery Yahoo! ID. Otherwise, your Shortmystery membership cannot be verified, your voting group membership will be denied, and you won't be allowed to vote.

April 1–29, visit the voting group homepage and log in with your Yahoo! ID and password.

In the Files section, click on the folder "THE DERRINGER FINALISTS" to see the four category folders:

  • FLASH
  • SHORT
  • LONG
  • NOVELETTE

Click on each category folder to see the five finalist stories as MS Word .doc files. You can open or save each file to your computer.


In the Polls section, there will be an open poll question for each Derringer category:


Click on a category's question and you'll see its five finalists as answer choices:


Click on the circle to the left of the finalist you believe should win the Derringer. This fills the circle with a white checkmark against a green background, the record of your vote.

If you want to change your vote before polling ends, return to the same poll question and click on the circle to the left of your new choice. The white checkmark and green background will move accordingly.

If you just want to withdraw your original vote, click on the same circle you did before and it will go blank.

For this example, let's say you change your vote from Sample Choice B to Sample Choice C. When polling ends, the breakdown of votes is shown, your final choice highlighted green:


The results will be visible April 30 but will not be official until Derringer Coordinator Dan Persinger announces them on Shortmystery May 1.

2016 Derringer Finalists

From Derringer Awards Coordinator Tony Rudzki, here are the finalists for 2016. Group voting to determine the winner in each category runs March 1–30. Winners announced March 31.

For Best Flash Story (Up to 1,000 words)
  • Jack Bates, "The Hard Screw" (Near to the Knuckle, August 6, 2015)
  • Craig Faustus Buck, "Heavy Debt" (Mondays are Murder: Akashic Books, August 10, 2015)
  • Barb Goffman, "The Wrong Girl" (Flash and Bang: A Short Mystery Fiction Society Anthology: Untreed Reads, October 2015)
  • Vy Kava, "Hero" (Red Dawn: Best New England Crime Stories 2016: Level Best Books, November 2015)
  • John Weagly, "Trash Pick-Up" (Near to the Knuckle, September 24, 2015)

For Best Short Story (1,001–4,000 words)
  • Shelly Dickson Carr, "Words Can Kill" (Red Dawn: Best New England Crime Stories 2016: Level Best Books, November 2015)
  • Nikki Dolson, "Joe Park's Little Girl" (Mystery Weekly, September 7, 2015)
  • Chris Knopf, "Kill Switch" (Red Dawn: Best New England Crime Stories 2016: Level Best Books, November 2015)
  • William Burton McCormick, "Pompo's Disguise" (Ellery Queen's Mystery Magazine, March/April 2015)
  • Meg Opperman, "Twilight Ladies" (Ellery Queen's Mystery Magazine, March/April 2015)

For Best Long Story (4,001–8,000 words)
  • Ron Collins, "The White Game" (Fiction River: Hidden in Crime: WMG Publishing, November 2015)
  • John M. Floyd, "Dentonville" (Ellery Queen's Mystery Magazine, November 2015)
  • Katia Lief, "The Orchid Grower" (Ellery Queen's Mystery Magazine, November 2015)
  • Robert Lopresti, "Shooting at Firemen" (Alfred Hitchcock's Mystery Magazine, July/August 2015)
  • Elizabeth Zelvin, "The Man in the Dick Tracy Hat" (Alfred Hitchcock's Mystery Magazine, June 2015)

For Best Novelette (8,001–20,000 words)
  • John M. Floyd, "Driver" (The Strand Magazine, February-May 2015)
  • Jane Haddam, "Crazy Cat Ladies" (Ellery Queen's Mystery Magazine, February 2015)
  • Richard Helms, "Shooting Stars" (Ellery Queen's Mystery Magazine, September/October 2015)
  • Gordon Hopkins, "Jack Daniels and Associates: The Whiplash Brokers" (Kindle Worlds, March 2015)
  • Travis Richardson, "Quack and Dwight" (Jewish Noir: Contemporary Tales of Crime and Other Dark Deeds: PM Press, November 2015)