The Shadow War of the Night Dragons, Book One: The Dead City is a parody fantasy short story by John Scalzi. It was first published on Tor.com on April 1, 2011, and presented as an excerpt from a nonexistent larger work.
On a dark and stormy night, three palace guards in the city of Skalandarharia discuss the possible existence of Night Dragons.
Jim C. Hines praised Tor for supporting the joke by commissioning cover art for the non-existent novel, and noted that there was "an actual story (...) amidst the jokes and the over-the-top fantasy tropes", such that "when (he) finished reading, (he) wanted to know what happened next;" Hines did, however, note that "some of the humor felt a little forced", and correctly predicted that the story would not win the Hugo.
- 2012 Hugo Awards, at TheHugoAwards.org; retrieved July 25, 2021
- BLOG Short, Sweet And Free: The Hugo Short Story Shortlist, by Dave Golder and Alasdair Stuart; at GamesRadar; published August 6, 2012; retrieved July 25, 2021
- It’s Hugo Month!, by Mur Lafferty; at Escape Pod; published May 2, 2012; retrieved July 25, 2021
- Hugo Short Stories, by Jim C. Hines, at JimCHines.com; published May 29, 2012; retrieved July 25, 2021