Frequently Asked Questions
Below are answers to some Frequently Asked Questions that we've had in the past. If you have a question that isn't covered here, please drop us a line in the Forums or the Contact Us page, and we'll get back to you as soon as we can.
What is Worlds Without End?
Worlds Without End is a fan web site, and a growing online community, dedicated to identifying, reading and sharing the best Science Fiction, Fantasy and Horror novels the genre has to offer. We don't want you to ever have to read a bad book again.
What awards does WWEnd cover?
Worlds Without End brings together the complete listings of novels, authors and publishers for 14 major awards in Science Fiction, Fantasy and Horror:
Is Worlds Without End going to cover any other awards?
Yes. We plan to continue expanding our awards base until we run out of significant best novel awards to cover.
What other awards do you plan to cover?
We recently brought in the Bram Stoker, Shirley Jackson and the Locus YA, in order to accomodate our expansion into the Horror and Young Adult books. After that, we added the Mythopoetic Award and we have our eye on the Ditmar Award and James Tiptree among others.
What about foreign language books and awards? There are many excellent books in Polish, Russian, Japanese etc. that you are overlooking....
As a practical matter the WWEnd team members only speak English, as do better than 99% of our visitors. Add to that the dismal availability of foreign language books in the US - even in translation. We'll be sticking with awards and books in our native tongue for the forseeable future.
Does Worlds Without End only cover award winning or nominated books?
No. While a good number of the books in our database are winners and nominees we also cover books that are part of a series that includes a nominated book. If book three of a trilogy wins an award it's not very helpful to our members to omit books one and two. There are thousands of non-nominated series books in our database and that number will continue to grow until we've got them all accounted for. A great example of series books is Discworld. Only seven Discworld books received nominations but we have the entire series of 37 books.
In addition to the series books and other books by our nominated authors we've been expanding our selection by adding "best of" lists. Currently we have 19 book lists for you to choose from.
What "best of" book lists does WWEnd cover?
In our quest to bring you the best books in Science Fiction, Fantasy & Horror we've expanded our database to include the best SF/F/H book lists out there. We'll be bringing you new lists from time to time so you'll never run out of books to read. If you're a member you can follow along with BookTrackr™ and see how you match up.
- SF/F/H Series
- Books Reviewed
- Classics of Science Fiction
- Guardian: The Best SF/F
- Baen Military SF List
- ISFDB Top 100
- Pringle Best 100 SF
- Pringle Modern Fantasy
- SF Masterworks
- Fantasy Masterworks
- SF Mistressworks
- Locus Best SF
- Banned SF/F Books
- Award Winning Books by Women Authors
- WWEnd Top Nominated
- WWEnd Top Listed
- WWEnd Most Read
- NPR: Top 100 SF/F
- HWA Reading List
- EP Masterpieces of SF
- David Brin's YA List
- SF: 101 Best 1985-2010
- Nightmare Magazine 100
- Genre Lit-Flicks
Why does Worlds Without End focus on the awards so much? Many fine books never even get nominated....
The fourteen awards we cover form the backbone of the WWEnd database. They offer a broad cross section of where the genre has been and where it's going. They show us what was considered the best, or at least most widely read, of the genre at the time and give us a glimpse into years gone by. But they are more than just an historical record. They're a useful tool to help you find great science fiction, fantasy and horror. They can lead you to try new books and authors - some you may never have heard of before, some you may have forgotten. They bring to light new up-and-coming authors you may never have found otherwise.
Of course the awards are not without their controversies and detractors. Determining "the best" in any art where personal taste is so subjective is always going to create controversy. Every award has it's pros and cons. Selection process, qualification criteria, voting procedures, regional biases, author celebrity plus many other factors can affect the outcome of any given award. They are as flawed as the passionate people who run and participate in them. That does not mean they are without merit... just that their inherent limitations have to be kept in mind.
By covering many different awards we hope to mitigate some of these issues. We don't suggest that anyone ONLY read the award nominated books forsaking all others. We hope that visitors to WWEnd will use the awards as a tool to find new books and authors to read just as they use book reviews from trusted sources, recommendations from friends, gut instinct and whatever other tools they would normally employ when book hunting.
We consider the awards a great jumping off point that will give you a better than average shot at finding a good read. Maybe even a great read.
Why is my favorite author not in your database? What kind of site are you running here?!
This is one of the most asked questions we get, often in angry or accusatory tones. The simple answer is that your favorite author was not nominated for any of the awards or book lists we currently cover. That's it. There's no conspiracy to defraud your favorite of their rightful place in the annals of SF/F/H.
As we add more awards we'll be adding more authors along with them. Please be patient and try to understand that data collection is time consuming and often difficult. We like to think that with over 1,400 authors to choose from you might find a new favorite if you look around a bit.
In recent years we have begun to expand well beyond the nominated and listed authors and have been taking many author requests from members in the forums. Most of the new additions have been women authors as part of our Women of Genre Fiction Reading Challenge but there have been plenty of new male authros as well.
My favorite author "Author Name" is on your site but you only have "X" of his/her books. Where are the rest of his/her books?
The WWEnd database is built around the award nominated books so we don't have every book by every author in our system. We have all the books that received a nomination from the 14 awards we currently cover and we are, of course, adding series books to complete any series where at least one book was nominated for an award. We have expanded that to include any and all books by our nominated authors but we are limited by time and resources and there are thousands of books still to add.
If there is a specific book by one of our authors that you'd like us to include in the the database just let us know and we'll get it added. Hit us up in the forums or shoot us an email.
Some of your data seems to be incorrect or incomplete. What gives?
The data contained within WWEnd is as accurate as we can make it given our limited resources. We make every effort to ensure our content is correct but we acknowledge that there are inevitable errors.
Our awards listings are very accurate as that data is relatively easy to come by online. Many authors provide press kit information on their web sites like bios and pictures etc. that we'll use here. We won't use information that is outside the public domain without permission and getting permission is time consuming and laborious thus the many holes in our author data. The same issue exists for our novels. Synopses are public domain and most times freely available online but many publishers/authors do not wish to share excerpts so we don't always have those.
Some things like publication information are notoriously hard to fathom. Some instances that have caused confusion for us thus far:
- The same novel can be published in multiple years by multiple publishers or imprints in multiple countries.
- Some books get different titles in different countries.
- Books get published out of narrative sequence or the author will come back ten years later to insert a new volume into a now seven book trilogy.
- Some series are listed in publication order, some in chronological order according to the narrative and some with the author's preferred reading order.
- A publishing house will have separate and distinct imprints for different books in different countries or will combine with other publishers to distribute different books under a joint name.
We are always working to make our content more complete and accurate and we encourage our visitors/members to point out any errors they find and to contribute new content where possible.
What is BookTrackr™ and how does it work?
BookTrackr™ is a WWEnd member's only feature that helps you track the books you've read or want to read. See the BookTrackr™ page for complete details on how it works.
What can I do to help Worlds Without End?
This is a great question! There are many things you can do to help Worlds Without End improve and grow. As a general answer: Get involved! Sign up, post in the blog or the forums, contribute a book review, tell you friends about us, link to us etc. For more specifics see our Support WWEnd page. Worlds Without End is only as good as our members make it. It's through YOUR participation and contributions that we'll be able to grow and prosper.