Ranking creative works is a touchy subject, especially if you are one of the creators. Award Annals does not appraise works; we merely assign a score to each type of honor that a work has received and add them all up. The score is assigned in an annal. The terms used to identify each possible place are set to match those used by the award organization, but default terms exist and are shown in the table below. Most awards have only a winner (1st) and finalists or a shortlist (3rd). Some have a special citation (2nd).
|10||winner||Sometimes called 1st, grand jury prize, etc.|
|8||2nd||Citation, special, runner-up.|
|6||finalist||Nominee, shortlist, etc. Finalists are always in place 3 if possible so that the points awarded are commensurate with awards that recognize a runner-up.|
|4||4th||The remaining places are not currently used, but exist to accommodate future awards.|
|It is sometimes necessary to assign an honor but withhold the points. For instance, there should be no points for a work nominated more than once for the same award. An asterisked honor allows us to record the event without awarding points.|
The honor score for each work is the sum of these points plus a “freshness” score based on the most recent year of awards. For instance, at the time of this writing, Book:American Gods won three awards (30 points) and was nominated for 3 others (18 points), for a total of 48 points. That puts in near the top of honor rolls such as Fiction books, tied with Book:Jonathan Strange & Mr. Norrell. Unfortunately Gods is 0.03 less fresh than Strange because it won awards in 2002 as opposed to 2005.
The reason for the tiny freshness score is to aid in the ranking of books that have the same score by honors alone. For a while they were ranked alphabetically, but ranking by freshness seems more useful if not more egalitarian.
Creator ranking is simply the sum of the honor scores their works have received. Honor rolls do not count all of a creator’s works; only the works that belong to that particular category are counted. For instance, at the time of this writing Author:Stephen King has 80 points in Honor roll:Fiction authors for books that qualify as Fiction. In Honor roll:Horror authors he has 170 points. This may seem like needless complexity, but it is essential to a list that reflects the values of the category.