The Nebula Awards are the awards bestowed by the Science Fiction/Fantasy Writers of America to works of excellence. But the 52-year-old organization has never lauded writers of video games. Until now.
SFWA president Cat Rambo told GeekWire, “I would think that one of the things a Nebula imprimatur would mean for a game is that it is a game that really has some story to it. That it’s a game that can achieve that sort of immersive wonderful experience that only text can bring.”
It’s a terrific move. (Full disclosure: I am an affiliate member of SFWA.) Video games have been offering compelling storylines for years now, some of them as engaging as any good novel or screenplay. Games like Star Wars: Knights of the Old Republic and BioShock Infinite have stayed with me for years.
Welcoming video games into SFWA’s fold is yet another step in modernizing the organization, which has suffered its fair share of controversies. In yet another example of modernization, SFWA welcomed self-published and small-press authors of science fiction and fantasy in 2015.
SFWA has been admitting writers of video games for a year now. Writers who have earned $3,000 from writing a video game — and have made one sale of 40,000 words or three sales of 10,000 words — can qualify.
But only one of them will win the 2018 award for Best Game Writing.