Several members of the HWA—including Dean Koontz—were reluctant to endorse such writing awards, fearing it would incite competitiveness rather than friendly admiration. The HWA therefore went to lengths to avoid mean-spirited competition: They agreed to specifically seek out new and neglected writers and works, and officially issue awards not based on "best of the year" criteria, but "for superior achievement", which allows for frequent ties.
Works can be recommended by any member of the HWA. Members with Active status then vote works onto a preliminary ballot. From there the field is narrowed to the final ballot and Active members choose the winners from that.
Deborah LeBlanc, HWA president, said, “We saw a lot of great work published in 2007. Whether the reader was after long fiction, short fiction, poetry or non-fiction, he had a wealth of good material to choose from. Narrowing the field down and finally choosing the work that is superior in its category is a year long process that our members take very seriously.”
LeBlanc added, “The Horror Writers Association is very proud to award the Bram Stoker Awards to this year’s winners. In some cases we recognized established professionals, while in others we applauded the work of lesser known authors. We hope winning this award will tell them their hard work is appreciated, and encourage them to keep producing great literature in the horror genre.”
Superior Achievement in a NOVEL: "The Missing" by Sarah Langan
HWA also presented its annual Lifetime Achievement Award. Two winners were named this year. They are legendary film director John Carpenter and author Robert Weinberg.