The John W. Campbell Award for best new writer award is presented to the a sci-fi writer whose first professionally published work was within the last two years. The same folks who judge the Hugo awards judge this award, and the nominees are all amazing writers and a practical who's-who of the genre.
If You're Just Joining Us, a self-professed "podcast about books, culture, media, ideas, and cheese," is starting a series of interview of the Campbell award nominees for 2008. The first one is with Mary Robinette Kowal, and it's pretty interesting--check it out if you've got a spare minute. I know I'll be back to listen to more as the series grows!