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Thursday, November 7, 2019

Best Modern Science Fiction Book (or Series) Nominations Needed

What is the best sci-fi book (or series) written between 1976 and 2000? 

It's time to start gathering nominations for our new poll. Remember we run no polls that are not populated by YOUR nominations, so if you're the type of person who always wonders where Suchandsuch book is when you see what you're voting on NOW IS YOUR CHANCE TO SHINE!

Remember that we're rerunning some of our most popular polls of the past few years, but this time we're doing it with lots more voters (and we'll be keeping the results on display.) It's all part of our new Sticky Polls--the 2019 roll out for polls here at Writing About Writing.

The Rules

NOTE: There is a new category of nomination. It is NOT a nomination for the poll. It is an UNDERSUNG HERO nomination. Basically it is for books you think are great, tragically overlooked, but maybe not necessarily the besty bestest best. I will be listing these books along with the poll results. However, if you nominate a book for our poll it will not be considered for the undersung hero list and if you shout out something for an undersung hero, it will not be counted as a nomination for the poll. (Someone else can nominate it.) Think about if you want to give a book few seem to know about a shout out or if you're tossing your fave into The Hunger Games.


  1. As always, I leave the niggling over the definition of genres to your best judgement because I'd rather be inclusive. If you want to nominate a Discworld novel as a fantasy book, I'm not going to argue that it's probably better classed as fantasy but YOU have to convince others if you're going to get seconded and on the poll--nevermind win.
  2. All books nominated must have publication dates from 1976-2000.
  3. A series with books that have landed inside and outside of the "Modern" zone may not be nominated as a series, but individual books in the series may. 
  4. You get to mention two (2) books (or series). That's it. Two. You can do ONE nomination for the poll and ONE UNDERSUNG HERO.  Or you can do TWO nominations for the poll. Or you can do TWO undersung heroes. But two is the total. If you nominate three or more I will NOT take any nominations beyond the second that you suggest. I'm sorry that I'm a stickler on this, but I compile these polls myself and it's a pain when people drop a megalodon list every decent book they can remember of in the genre and expect me to collate the data. It is up to as to how you how to divy your TWO choices. TWO.
  5. Did I mention two?
  6. You may (and absolutely should) second AS MANY nominations of others as you wish. THEY WILL NOT GET ONTO THE POLL WITHOUT SECONDS. You can agree with or cheer on the undersung heroes, but they won't "transform" into nominations unless someone else nominates that same book as "best" (and then they get a second). Also stop back in and see if anyone has put up something you want to see go onto the poll. 
  7. Put your nominations HERE. I will take nominations only as comments and only on this post. (No comments on FB posts will be considered nominations.) If you can't comment for some reason because of Blogger, send me an email (chris.brecheen@gmail.com) stating exactly that and what your nomination is, and I will personally put your comment up. I am not likely to see a comment on social media, so email me.
  8. You are nominating WRITTEN genre fiction, not their movie portrayals. If you thought Ender's Game was an incredible movie with amazing special effects, but found the writing of the book to be a little flat or if you love The Handmaid's Tale miniseries on Hulu but hate early Atwood novels, nominate something else.
  9. This is probably well known by vets of this blog by now, but there will be no more endless elimination rounds. I will take somewhere between 8-20 best performing titles and at MOST run a single semifinal round. By "performing" I mean the seconds. So second the titles you want even if they already have one. (Yes, I guess that would make them "thirds," "fourths," etc...) The competition on this poll might be fierce. You may have to get your friends involved. Buy them a pizza. Make it real. 
  10. TWO!

48 comments:

  1. Nomination: Consider Phlebas, by Iain M. Banks (1987).

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    Replies
    1. Can we broaden this to the whole Culture series (or at least those written before 2000)? I was gonna nominate The Player of Games.

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  2. Doomsday Book (Willis, 1992)

    (Holding onto my second nomination while I think about it.)

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  3. Nomination: Timeline (1999), Michael Chichton

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  4. Nomination: Prodigal Son (2004), Dean Koontz

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    Replies
    1. I double checked, the Silo series does not fall in the correct dates. 🙄🙃 oops!!

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  7. Nomination: VALIS by Philip K. Dick (1981). I'll have a think about a second one.

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  8. Nomination: Hyperion by Dan Simmons (1989)

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    Replies
    1. Why only the first book rather than the series? IMO it's the least good of the four.

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  9. A Civil Campaign by Lois McMaster Bujold

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  10. Undersung Hero: The Postman by David Brin

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  11. Nomination: The Uplift War by David Brin (1987)

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    Replies
    1. Seconded, but I'd also second either the whole series, or the initial Trilogy

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  12. Nomination: The Parable duology by Octavia Butler (Parable of the Sower - 1993, Parable of the Talents - 1997)

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  13. The Hitchhiker's guide to the galaxy by Douglas Adams

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  14. Undersung Hero: A Planet Called Treason (1979) aka Treason (1988) by Orson Scott Card.

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  15. Cyteen (1988) and Foreigner (1994) both by C. J. Cherryh

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  16. Nomination: A Fire Apon the Deep, by Vernor Vinge

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  17. Don't Bite the Sun by Tanith Lee... 1976. It takes a few chapters to really get rolling, but it's SO worth it. I buy it over and over and give it away as opposed to loaning it out and trying to get back.

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  18. Unsung Hero (this is my fav scifi of all time so far)
    Peter Hamilton Night's Dawn Trilogy
    1996-1999
    https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/The_Night%27s_Dawn_Trilogy

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  19. Nomination: Ender's Game, by Orson Scott Card (1985).

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  20. Undersung Hero: The Dosadi Experiment, by Frank Herbert (1977).

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  21. I'll go with William Gibson's Neuromancer (1984).

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  22. and for my second, Carl Sagan's Contact (1985).

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  23. The Hyperion Cantos by Dan Simmons (series)

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