Hugo Commentary

(41 comments)

Oh, fine, let's just make this the Hugo thread, as apparently I want to say stuff.

First of all, Vox Day lost, and that feels fucking amazing.

Second of all, the "burn it all" No Award position lost, which means I did too. And frankly, that feels fucking amazing too. I mean, don't get me wrong; I don't regret voting No Award in every category. I stand by every word.

But I want to go back to something I said in "Guided by the Beauty of Their Weapons," which was that the thing I have always loved about the Hugos is their capacity for weirdness. The Hugos are a great literary award because they have a wonderful unpredictability that happens with surprisingly few outright bad and unjustifiable winners. There aren't a lot of awards like that. The Oscars and the Emmys are littered with far more flatly undeserving winners and clear travesties, and never do anything nearly as weird as give awards to XKCD and Digger.

So yeah, my side only won five categories. What a crushing defeat; we only doubled the total number of No Awards in history in the course of a near complete repudiation of the Sad Puppies, with the only Puppy winner being something that would have made the ballot anyway, and helpfully shutting down the argument that the electorate only voted on politics, as opposed to considering politics alongside other things. (Even if I freely admit that I did vote on politics, clearly the electorate didn't.)

Meanwhile, we had Laura J. Mixon, who exposed a loathsome troll within the progressive science fiction community, and who used her acceptance speech to speak out for #BlackLivesMatter. We had a beautiful refusal to obey the "don't clap until the end" rule for Terry Pratchett. We had the beautiful moment of Robert Silverberg telling stories of the 1968 Worldcon in Berkeley, a date and place that speaks volumes about what the actual heritage of science fiction is, as opposed to the ahistorical lies peddled by Brad Torgersen. We had a win for Orphan Black, one of the most self-consciously diverse shows on television, and a good one to boot. We had, over and over again, voice after voice raised in support of that heritage. And we even had a Dalek on stage, so the Puppies can't complain they weren't represented.

But most beautifully of all, we had all the prose awards given go out to works published in translation, which is a genuine victory for diversity.

That's the award I love and respect. That's why the Hugos were worth fighting for in the first place.

This was an enormously good night. Thank you to each an every one of you who stepped up, bought supporting memberships, and made it happen.

I lost; we won.

EDIT (Sunday morning): And the good news keeps coming. The fairest and most effective plan to reform the nomination process, aka "E Pluribus Hugo," just passed at the Business Meeting. It'll need to be ratified at next year's Worldcon, but it looks like next year will be the last year of fending off fascist entryists, and like come 2017 we can get back to being fans.

Just in time for All the Birds in the Sky to win.

Comments

Robert O' Shea 1 year, 10 months ago

Hi Philip! This comment isnt related to the Hugos but just to say I loved your interview with Peter Harness. Any plans to interview any other writers etc? Oh and a quick question, have you read Mick Carey's The Unwritten or Lucifer? I just have become a late discoverer of them and I am in awe of Carey's concepts and ideas and in love with Peter Gross's work.

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timber-munki 1 year, 10 months ago

Very happy, and regardless of the semantic gymnastics VD tries to pull, the fascists lost, at a Lib Dems 2015 kind of level. The unfortunate thing is that this is exactly the type of repudiation of all they stand for is grist for their false victim mill, but, just for today fuck 'em.


BTW do the Hugos release the voting breakdown, because I'd really like to see a comparison to the nomination figures.

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Scurra 1 year, 10 months ago

Voting breakdown here:
http://www.thehugoawards.org/content/pdf/2015HugoStatistics.pdf

Some interesting things to see, most notably the essentially complete failure of the Puppies once it came to the actual voting (but then again, they'd achieve their objective at the nomination stage.) Also the sad lack of love for Edge of Tomorrow (but that's just me.)

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Iain Coleman 1 year, 10 months ago

The Lib Dems in 2015 won 8 seats, including that of the party leader. Hardly a great performance, but the Puppies did much worse even than that.

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Iain Coleman 1 year, 10 months ago

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timber-munki 1 year, 10 months ago

Thanks, also the sad lack of love for Edge of Tomorrow is not just you.

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Doctor Memory 1 year, 10 months ago

Meanwhile, we had Laura J. Mixon, who exposed a loathsome troll within the progressive science fiction community

Ohboy. *orders extra bulk popcorn from amazon*

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Cat Sittingstill 1 year, 10 months ago

When the Sad Puppies whine that this was Puppy-hate, point to Three Body Problem (which the Rabidest Puppy loved, even though it was originally pushed off the ballot by his own slate: see Slates, Problems With) and Guardians of the Galaxy.
When the Sad Puppies wail that this was anti-conservative politics, point to Sheila Gilbert, fine editor and openly non-Puppy, placed below No Award in a principled anti-slate move.

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Eric Rosenfield 1 year, 10 months ago

It's weird to look under the cutoff for nominations in most categories and see what the nominees SHOULD have been.

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Eric Rosenfield 1 year, 10 months ago

Also still flabbergasted that the puppies didn't nominate in best related work "In Conversation with His Century vol. 2" about their beloved Heinlein, which actually is a legitimate notable related science fiction work, and instead nominated "Wisdom from My Internet" which has nothing to do with science fiction.

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Eric Rosenfield 1 year, 10 months ago

Also, looking at the #hugoawards twitter feed is making my brain melt. All the puppies are claiming that this proves them right because... they proved the publishers tell people how to vote or something? Gah! It makes hurty in my brain!

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Andrew Plotkin 1 year, 10 months ago

Yay us. Yay excellent science fiction.

I think only one of my first-place picks actually won first place. (Ignoring N/A.) I am totally fine with all of the winners. Every prose, dramatic, and graphic-novel winner is a work that I enjoyed reading/watching and would recommend to others.

Also, when the Puppies whine that this was politics or bias or whatever they're whining about, just laugh. Laugh joyfully. Walk away laughing.

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cmattg 1 year, 10 months ago

And look at the Graphic Story award: A mainstream Marvel book, written by a Muslim woman, about a second-generation immigrant Muslim woman.

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Sean Dillon 1 year, 10 months ago

Well, there is an interview with Gareth Roberts in the Fifth TARDIS Eruditorium book and he is doing another interview in the upcoming Sixth TARDIS Eruditorium book (which I believe will come out sometime in September/October).

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John Seavey 1 year, 10 months ago

I suspect a lot of the lack of love for 'EoT' was down to Cruise. My wife, for example, refuses to see anything he's in on principle as long as he's a member of the Church of Scientology. That's anecdotal, of course, but among a crowd like this, that could be a factor.

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Sean Dillon 1 year, 10 months ago

So apparently Nimona was kept off the Ballot. Nimona, a children's book that is essentially about how Jack was right in his Merlin essay. Also Jodorowsky's Dune, the film that got us a new Jodorowsky film. Well, I look forward to next year where The Return/Jailbreak beat out the death of Charlie from Supernatural (Hell, just nominate the entire Week of Sardonyx for longform). And Pex Lives gets a nomination.

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Daibhid C 1 year, 10 months ago

I have to share this, for the amusement of your readers who don't follow people on Twitter who retweet weird British right-wingers ironically (which I suspect is most of them). Louise Mensch, the unthinking person's Katie Hopkins tweeted:

"#HugoAwards panel pitched a hissy fit. Best answer is to buy the books of those they excluded. Can somebody throw up a list?"

That's an impressive amount of wrong in less than 140 characters. (Although, to be fair, if it was almost anyone else, I'd suspect the last sentence of being ironic.)

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TheOncomingHurricane 1 year, 10 months ago

If you think that was an impressive amount of wrong, you should have seen her attempt on Friday to smear Jeremy Corbyn supporters as abusive of Liz Kendall with a screenshot of autocompleted search results for Kendall. They turned out to be her own previous searches. Whoops.

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J Mairs 1 year, 10 months ago

Question: Why are Sad Puppies called "Sad Puppies"? I don't get it. When I google the term, half the links I get are to a lot of news stories all of which seem to expect that I understand what the Sad Puppies are all about and why they're called that.

Besides, I end up looking at GoogeImages. N'awwwww.

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Daibhid C 1 year, 10 months ago

Yep. And then, like the puppies, she started desperately claiming "No, obviously, that was my point, somehow..."

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Scurra 1 year, 10 months ago

The excellent Wired article does mention the history a little:
http://www.wired.com/2015/08/won-science-fictions-hugo-awards-matters/
...but it doesn't seem entirely rational.

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camestrosfelapton 1 year, 10 months ago

It was a joke in Larry Correia's original Get Larry a Hugo Campaign (aka Sad Puppies 1). This was for the 2013 Hugos and he posted a series of messages on his blog in a jokey tone which he said should be read with the music for an advert about homeless dogs in the background (i.e. 'sad puppies'). Various things making people sad puppies was a joke he'd used before in other contexts.
Retroactively that campaign became known as Sad Puppies 1 when Correia tried again the next year (nominating VD as well) with Sad Puppies 2. Brad T took over for this year.
'Rabid' came from a different kerfuffle, when a rightwing, trollish section of the SFWA were referred to as the 12 Rabid Weasels.

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camestrosfelapton 1 year, 10 months ago

There was only 1 puppy nominee in that section, so Nimona wouldn't have made it onto the ballot regardless (Saga volume 4 would have got on instead). Which is a shame because Nimona was an awesome web-comic and Noelle Stevenson is a mighty talent. However, it is a crime that can't be laid at the Puppy door.

I'm cross about Jackalope Wives not making it (although the author has written a very gracious post about that http://ursulav.livejournal.com/1634673.html ). And it is notable/ironic that Andy Weir got bumped off the Campbell Award by the Puppies

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camestrosfelapton 1 year, 10 months ago

Key thing: everyone with supporting memberships needs to keep track of what they are reading and be ready to nominate ANYTHING that is good (and eligible). This is particularly true in the shorter fiction categories (Short Story, Novella, Novellette).

The numbers are such that if everybody nominates who voted, a puppy slate will still be swamped.

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TheOncomingHurricane 1 year, 10 months ago

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TheOncomingHurricane 1 year, 10 months ago

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Philip Sandifer 1 year, 10 months ago

The above two (now deleted) comments consisted of questions previously sent to me anonymously via Tumblr, which I replied to indicating that I was actively disinterested in discussing this topic, and that I would block the IP if I continued to receive questions on this subject.

I've deleted them because responding to such a clear request by trying again in a different medium represents a spectacular and unacceptable violation of boundaries.

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TheOncomingHurricane 1 year, 10 months ago

I really, really wish you hadn't just done that.

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TheWatersOfMars 1 year, 10 months ago

Any news about which author that'll be?

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Philip Sandifer 1 year, 10 months ago

Well, I really, really wish you had demonstrated any respect whatsoever for my boundaries when I said that this wasn't a conversation I was interested in conducting on my webspace, but you didn't, so here we are.

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Philip Sandifer 1 year, 10 months ago

Nah, because a reveal like that excites people, and there's no point in exciting people when I don't actually have a book they can go and order in their excitement.

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Matthew Blanchette 1 year, 10 months ago

Will the Seventh Eruditorum book (about the Sixth Doctor, of course) cover ALL the regenerations of Six -- including the upcoming Big Finish "Last Adventure"? :-)

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Philip Sandifer 1 year, 10 months ago

The Sixth Eruditorum book, about the Fifth and Sixth Doctors, will mention The Last Adventure in its revised version of the essay on Time's Champion.

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Matthew Blanchette 1 year, 10 months ago

Oh, my apologies. Didn't realize you were grouping them together. :-)

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phuzz 1 year, 10 months ago

There was one publisher telling people how to vote, Castalia House.
Although plenty of other publisher's did the usual "Hey! These works we publish have been nominated for the Hugos *hint hint*".

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John Toon 1 year, 10 months ago

Because Larry Correia is the sorta guy who watches a charity advert for an animal shelter and immediately thinks, "And why are those puppies sad? Because I haven't won any Hugo Awards yet!"

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matt bracher 1 year, 10 months ago

http://www.patriciabriggs.com/ has a short report and link to "E Pluribus Hugo" which -- if I'm reading right -- will be the new normal for defeating the power of a slate of nominations.

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Daru 1 year, 10 months ago

What a brilliant book and sooo happy it won!

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Daru 1 year, 10 months ago

Yep, I'm happy too!

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Daru 1 year, 10 months ago

Real happy with the results and really do deeply appreciate your hard work and writing Phil to bring the Hugo & Puppy issues to us. It inspired me to get a Supporter's Membership - and it was great to feel a whole part of the process and have my voice and vote have *actual* effects!

Really happy with the categories that got awards and those that were No Award. I did a mix of No Award and voted for those I loved.

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Daru 1 year, 10 months ago

Really enjoyed some aspects of EoT, but fell kind of flat by the ending of the film for me.

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