Hugo Stuff

Now that the Hugo noms have been announced I’ll start to collect the feedbacks here.

From File 770, here’s the list:

2016 Hugo Award Finalists

The finalists for this year’s Hugo Awards and John W. Campbell Award for Best New Writer were announced on Tuesday, April 26.

There were 4032 valid nominating ballots (4015 electronic and 17 paper) received and counted from the members of Sasquan, MidAmeriCon II, and Worldcon 75.

BEST NOVEL (3695 ballots)

  • Ancillary Mercy by Ann Leckie (Orbit)
  • The Cinder Spires: The Aeronaut’s Windlass by Jim Butcher (Roc)
  • The Fifth Season by N.K. Jemisin (Orbit)
  • Seveneves: A Novel by Neal Stephenson (William Morrow)
  • Uprooted by Naomi Novik (Del Rey)

BEST NOVELLA (2416 ballots)

  • Binti by Nnedi Okorafor (
  • The Builders by Daniel Polansky (
  • Penric’s Demon by Lois McMaster Bujold (Spectrum)
  • Perfect State by Brandon Sanderson (Dragonsteel Entertainment)
  • Slow Bullets by Alastair Reynolds (Tachyon)

BEST NOVELETTE (1975 ballots)

  • “And You Shall Know Her by the Trail of Dead” by Brooke Bolander (Lightspeed, Feb 2015)
  • “Flashpoint: Titan” by CHEAH Kai Wai (There Will Be War Volume X, Castalia House)
  • “Folding Beijing” by Hao Jingfang, trans. Ken Liu (Uncanny Magazine, Jan?Feb 2015)
  • “Obits” by Stephen King (The Bazaar of Bad Dreams, Scribner)
  • “What Price Humanity?” by David VanDyke (There Will Be War Volume X, Castalia House)

BEST SHORT STORY (2451 ballots)

  • “Asymmetrical Warfare” by S. R. Algernon (Nature, Mar 2015)
  • The Commuter by Thomas A. Mays (Stealth)
  • “If You Were an Award, My Love” by Juan Tabo and S. Harris (, Jun 2015)
  • “Seven Kill Tiger” by Charles Shao (There Will Be WarVolume X, Castalia House)
  • Space Raptor Butt Invasion by Chuck Tingle (Amazon Digital Services)

BEST RELATED WORK (2080 ballots)

  • Between Light and Shadow: An Exploration of the Fiction of Gene Wolfe, 1951 to 1986 by Marc Aramini (Castalia House)
  • “The First Draft of My Appendix N Book” by Jeffro Johnson (
  • “Safe Space as Rape Room” by Daniel Eness (
  • SJWs Always Lie: Taking Down the Thought Police by Vox Day (Castalia House)
  • “The Story of Moira Greyland” by Moira Greyland (

BEST GRAPHIC STORY (1838 ballots)

  • The Divine written by Boaz Lavie, art by Asaf Hanuka and Tomer Hanuka (First Second)
  • Erin Dies Alone written by Grey Carter, art by Cory Rydell (
  • Full Frontal Nerdity by Aaron Williams (
  • Invisible Republic Vol 1 written by Corinna Bechko and Gabriel Hardman, art by Gabriel Hardman (Image Comics)
  • The Sandman: Overture written by Neil Gaiman, art by J.H. Williams III (Vertigo)


  • Avengers: Age of Ultron written and directed by Joss Whedon (Marvel Studios; Walt Disney Studios Motion Pictures)
  • Ex Machina written and directed by Alex Garland (Film4; DNA Films; Universal Pictures)
  • Mad Max: Fury Road written by George Miller, Brendan McCarthy, and Nico Lathouris, directed by George Miller (Village Roadshow Pictures; Kennedy Miller Mitchell; RatPac?Dune Entertainment; Warner Bros. Pictures)
  • The Martian screenplay by Drew Goddard, directed by Ridley Scott (Scott Free Productions; Kinberg Genre; TSG Entertainment; 20th Century Fox)
  • Star Wars: The Force Awakens written by Lawrence Kasdan, J. J. Abrams, and Michael Arndt, directed by J.J. Abrams (Lucasfilm Ltd.; Bad Robot Productions; Walt Disney Studios Motion Pictures)


  • Doctor Who: “Heaven Sent” written by Steven Moffat, directed by Rachel Talalay (BBC Television)
  • Grimm: “Headache” written by Jim Kouf and David Greenwalt, directed by Jim Kouf (Universal Television; GK Productions; Hazy Mills Productions; Open 4 Business Productions; NBCUniversal Television Distribution)
  • Jessica Jones: “AKA Smile” written by Scott Reynolds, Melissa Rosenberg, and Jamie King, directed by Michael Rymer (Marvel Television; ABC Studios; Tall Girls Productions; Netflix)
  • My Little Pony: Friendship Is Magic: “The Cutie Map” Parts 1 and 2 written by Scott Sonneborn, M.A. Larson, and Meghan McCarthy, directed by Jayson Thiessen and Jim Miller (DHX Media/Vancouver; Hasbro Studios)
  • Supernatural: “Just My Imagination” written by Jenny Klein, directed by Richard Speight Jr. (Kripke Enterprises; Wonderland Sound and Vision; Warner Bros. Television)

BEST EDITOR  – SHORT FORM (1891 ballots)

  • John Joseph Adams
  • Neil Clarke
  • Ellen Datlow
  • Jerry Pournelle
  • Sheila Williams

BEST EDITOR – LONG FORM (1764 ballots)

  • Vox Day
  • Sheila E. Gilbert
  • Liz Gorinsky
  • Jim Minz
  • Toni Weisskopf


  • Lars Braad Andersen
  • Larry Elmore
  • Abigail Larson
  • Michal Karcz
  • Larry Rostant

BEST SEMIPROZINE (1457 ballots)

  • Beneath Ceaseless Skies edited by Scott H. Andrews, Nicole Lavigne, and Kate Marshall
  • Daily Science Fiction edited by Michele?Lee Barasso and Jonathan Laden
  • Sci Phi Journal edited by Jason Rennie
  • Strange Horizons edited by Catherine Krahe, Julia Rios, A. J. Odasso, Vanessa Rose Phin, Maureen Kincaid Speller, and the Strange Horizons staff
  • Uncanny Magazine edited by Edited by Lynne M. Thomas & Michael Damian Thomas, Michi Trota, and Erika Ensign & Steven Schapansky

BEST FANZINE (1455 ballots)

  • Black Gate edited by John O’Neill
  • Castalia House Blog edited by Jeffro Johnson
  • File 770 edited by Mike Glyer
  • Superversive SF edited by Jason Rennie
  • Tangent Online edited by Dave Truesdale

BEST FANCAST (1267 ballots)

  • 8?4 Play, Mark MacDonald, John Ricciardi, Hiroko Minamoto, and Justin Epperson
  • Cane and Rinse, Cane and Rinse
  • HelloGreedo, HelloGreedo
  • The Rageaholic, RazörFist
  • Tales to Terrify, Stephen Kilpatrick

BEST FAN WRITER (1568 ballots)

  • Douglas Ernst
  • Mike Glyer
  • Morgan Holmes
  • Jeffro Johnson
  • Shamus Young

BEST FAN ARTIST (1073 ballots)

  • Matthew Callahan
  • disse86
  • Kukuruyo
  • Christian Quinot
  • Steve Stiles


  • Pierce Brown *
  • Sebastien de Castell *
  • Brian Niemeier
  • Andy Weir *
  • Alyssa Wong *

Amazingly the noms have only been announced a few hours ago and Scalzi already knows whose responsible for the noms. In the LA Times yet.  That’s amazingly fast.

The glee of the Puppies didn’t last though the 2015 Hugo Award ceremony, however. A finalist slate didn’t guarantee a win. Over the course of the evening, all the Puppy finalists save one ended below “no award,” meaning the voters preferred not to give the award at all than to give it to a finalist on a slate.

The one finalist the Puppies slated that actually finished above “no award” and even won its category? “Guardians of the Galaxy,” the smash-hit Marvel film that grossed more than $770 million worldwide and was so popular, and so obviously disconnected from the Puppy slates, that few of the Hugo voters held its presence on the slates against it.

This is a fact the Puppy groups have taken to heart. This year, once again, the two Puppy groups announced slates (or in the case of the “Sad” variant, a “recommendation list”) of people and works they wanted to see on the finalist ballot. Once again, many of their choices made the cut. But where last year’s slates were filled with nominees primarily of interest to the Puppies themselves, this year’s Puppy slates included works and authors already popular with science fiction fans and tastemakers, and (as a subset of both of these) Hugo voters.

John apparently didn’t pay much attention to a lot of the categories where the rabid puppies made a mockery of what the Hugos were.

Making light has the announcments. As well at this comment from TNH.

Yup. Here we go again. The Pups are going to f*ck up another year’s worth of Hugos. They have no more excuse for it now than they ever had before.

What’s different: This year, the Pups salted their slate with some high-quality non-Pup nominees (in spite of furious objections from a number of them).

Two thoughts. First, I don’t think the Pups did it to honor the non-Pup nominees’ work. I think those names are there purely as protective coloration, and that the Pups are hoping to thereby avoid triggering the SF community’s immune responses.

Second, I don’t think the Pups are actually going to vote for any of those camouflaging nominees. I think that when they cast their final ballots, they’re going to vote for their own guys again.

The Pups didn’t go to all this trouble just so they could give Hugos to people who aren’t Pups. They’ve come up with multiple contradictory excuses for what they’re doing, but at bottom it’s always been about getting Hugos for Pups.

And the Guardian weighs in with it’s typical cluelessness.

Vox did warn them.

Nicki weighs in. Language warning.

Nicki on why Scalzi is a bitter, petty dick cheese (and so is Damien Walter)


Breitbart  has a piece.

Declann Finn has some good Analysis.

Larry keeps it short.

This is going to be brief because I retired from the Sad Puppies campaign last year.

All I can really say to the CHORFs is that they had a chance to deal with people like me or Brad, but instead they decided to be a bunch of pricks and hand out wooden assholes while block voting No Award. In the process they insulted disgruntled fans, and proved that they were a bunch of cliquish elitists just like I’d said they were to begin with.

That’s how you end up with Space Raptor Butt Invasion. Have fun with that.

Gizmodo spins the narrative.

File 770 has analysis.

Measuring The Rabid Puppies Slate’s Impact on the Final Hugo Ballot

Salon comments in it’s usual style.

Brandon Sanderson.

Starting off with this.

Sad Puppies

For the 2015 season, and the one before, I proactively went to Sad Puppies and asked them not to include any of my works on their slates. I did this for a few reasons.

Mr. Sanderson, do you realize that you are asking FANS to NOT like your stuff?  Fine we FANS can NOT like, NOT BUY and NOT READ your stuff from now on.  Of course the may mean that your stuff does NOT make money, but that’s no skin off we FANs’ back.

First: Many of the Sad Puppies felt that there was a behind-the-scenes cabal working in science fiction to prevent people with certain ideological views from winning awards. (They named Tor Books, my publisher, as a kind of illuminati-like force behind this.)

This is terribly inaccurate. I know a lot about Tor. I love Tor. Editors and staff at Tor couldn’t agree on what to order for lunch most days; I sincerely doubt they could pull strings on something like award nominations. Tor is a huge group of editors with vast ideological differences, and they represent some of the best people in fandom I’ve ever known. Some very vocal ones are ideologically opposed to many of those in Sad Puppies, but there are plenty who have other opinions.

I just want to point out that there have been too many things that seemingly came straight out of the office on 26th St. that disparaged the puppies in general and Larry and Brad in particular for this to be believable.  Stuff like this.

And this.

Of course there was this standout example of how NOT to use social media to promote your business.

Second: I didn’t like the way many of the Puppies talked. They could be belligerent and argumentative, using tactics that felt more likely to silence opposition instead of provoke discussion. In addition, they associated with people even worse. (More on this below.) Some leaders in the movement verbally attacked people I respect and love.


And the puppy kickers were not?  As for attacks, it wasn’t the puppies who handed out those butthole awards.

Third: I didn’t like the idea of a slate for the Hugos—a specific list of stories, which (at least implicitly) encouraged the followers to vote exactly the same as their fellows. I felt this put ideology ahead of quality, which is against the spirit of the Hugo Awards.

These awards are supposed to be about the best of sf/f. We are not supposed to vote or nominate simply for our favorite writers, nor choose things just because they advance our viewpoint. (Though things we nominate and vote for can indeed do both things.) We are to examine pieces outside of authorship and pick ones that represent the best of the community.

The only slate existed in the minds of the kickers.  But that’s not how the narrative was spun.

Last year, I spent many months in communication with the organizers of Sad Puppies. Several of them live here in Utah. I considered myself in a good position to speak with them, as I was friendly and on good terms with them—but ideologically, I was on the other side: rather liberal politically, published by the very publisher they were disparaging.

We exchanged very long emails. My goal was to convince them there was no cabal against them, to encourage them to be more understanding in their posts, and to steer them away from slates. I felt that if they would present themselves better to those inside “mainstream” fandom, they would find themselves welcomed into the community.

I also wrote letters to people on what I’ll term “my side.” Many of these went to my editor, Moshe, who came to the forefront of many anti-puppies arguments on Facebook and on blogs. I argued to him that the Sad Puppies are a legitimately passionate group of fans, deserving of being listened to. I told him we should hear them out and encourage them to participate in the community. (So long as they can do so without being hateful.)

At the end of the season, I feel that in much of the media the Sad Puppies were treated poorly. People ignored many of their points, calling them names instead of looking at what they were actually saying. At the Hugo Awards ceremony, I was not fond of the way many in the audience applauded when No Award won. (I can understand voting No Award, mind you, but I feel the applause was in terrible taste—and in many cases it hurt members of our community who deserved better.)

It’s hard to prove that a cabal doesn’t exist in middle of a crapstorm coming from that very same cabal.  Brandon was lucky that he was on their side. Some of the rest of us have a different point of view about what happened last year.  And yes they did hurt members of the community who deserved better, starting long before last year. Which is why the whole puppies movement started. Far too many of us were finally tired of the crap.



Hugo Awards 2016

Newsweek wonders about troll entries.

 I look at this and think, for all the heat and fury that the kickers generated about Vox they couldn’t come up with enough nominating votes to knock two obvious troll entries off the list? Is there nothing there on the kicker side but sock puppets?

Eric Flint.  Eric, did you really have use George to take another shot at Brad?

Let me start by quoting something that George R.R. Martin said in a recent post he made on his “Not a Blog” blog:

Sad Puppies 4, this year headed by Kate Paulk, changed its approach and produced a recommended reading list, with anywhere from one to ten suggestions in each category, rather than slating four or five. The process was open and democratic, which Sad Puppies 3 often claimed to be but never was. Paulk also avoided the ugly excesses of the previous campaign, and never stooped to the sort of invective that her predecessor, Brad Torgersen, had been so fond of, with all his talk of CHORFs and Puppy-kickers. For all this she should be commended.

I agree with George and I think that’s as much as needs to be said on the subject of the Sad Puppies. Whatever I think of any specific recommendation they made is neither here nor there. The Sad Puppies have as much right to make recommendations as does anyone else. Locus magazine does it routinely and no one objects—nor should they.

So Brad was the jerk last year.

In short, the only difference between the Rabid Puppies this year compared to last year is that they have gotten slimier. This should come as no surprise to anyone, since slime is pretty much Theodore Beale’s stock in trade.

I’m sorry, but after that travesty of an awards ceremony and that sick party George put on, That you, Eric received one of those disgusting hood ornaments in, I would look long and hard at calling ANYBODT else slimy.

The way it was handled last year by a very large number of voters was to use a club labeled “No Award” and wield that club with no discrimination at all. In any category where the Puppies’ slates predominated, these voters simply smashed the whole category—often at the expense of authors and editors who were quite blameless in the affair and at least some of whom probably did deserve to win the award.

The evidence that the club was a bunch of sock puppet votes created by the Club to show their power. Giving us that whole travesty.  About the slimiest thing that I have ever seen.  And done to a bunch of very good people.

George  RR Martin. Apparently he thought that the puppies would just go away. And looks like he’s getting out his sock puppets.

(Oh… and yes, for those who were asking. This does mean we will need a second set of Alfies).

John C. Wright

Rabid Puppies Sweep Hugo Nominations

Noah Ward says don’t No Award.

First, ratify E Pluribus Hugo. This is ought to be such a no-brainer than anyone that attempts to argue otherwise is not to be trusted. It won’t fix everything, but it will make it harder for any well-organised minority to swamp the ballot.

Second, think very hard about the wisdom of repeating last year’s block no-awarding everything tainted, throwing good people under the bus in an attempt to preserve the purity of the awards. That stank when they did it to people like Toni Weisskopf last year. The garbage from VD’s cronies you can no award to oblivion if it’s as awful as it sounds from the titles. But remember that burning down The Hugos is VD’s goal, and no-awarding deserving nominees like Toni Weisskopf or Alastair Reynolds gives him what he wants.

Third, recognise that the Sad Puppies and the Rabid ones are very different things, and try to build bridges with the some of the first of those groups, or at least avoid rhetoric or behaviour that further deepens the divide with anyone who’s not an actual acolyte of Vox Day. The mass no-awarding of last year did not help in that regard.

To the Kickers, here’s a clue.  If you REALLY want to build bridges, you’re going have to start REAL soon and try REAL hard.  The puppies have seen too much crap from you kickers, right from the start and frankly, at this point, anything other than total surrender and true abject public apologies to the likes of Toni, Jagi Wright and Brad from Scalzi, PNH, Moshe,  Gallo and GRRM will only make things worse.


Abagail Nussbaum presumes to believe that it is puppy kicker that are the adults here.

But having taken a closer look at this year’s ballot, I’m starting to wonder if there isn’t reason for cautious optimism.  Yes, it’s a terrible ballot, with multiple categories that are write-offs or all-buts, and lots of good people who deserved to be on it for tremendous work who have now lost their chance.  But it’s significantly less terrible than last year’s.  Even in the categories where all the nominees were slated by the Rabid Puppies (Best Short Story, Best Related Work, Best Graphic Story, Best Professional Artist, Best Fanzine, and Best Fancast), the nominees are not as obviously ridiculous as they were last year (with the obvious exception of Best Related Work and Best Short Story).  In most of the categories dominated by puppy choices, we still have an actual choice between nominees, not just a winner by default because everyone else on the ballot is terrible.  Most importantly, this year’s Best Novel ballot is one that we can look at without cringing, with only one blatant puppy nominee.  It may sound like I’m lowering the bar, but to me this is all a sign that things are settling down, and that in the future–and especially if the anti-slating measures adopted in last year’s business meeting are ratified–we’ll start seeing this award return to normal.

Of course, I’m leaving out one important point, which might cast a pall on this year’s more acceptable raft of nominees–the fact that most of them were puppy choices.  In some cases, these were nominees that probably would have made it onto the ballot without the help of Vox Day and his ilk–things like Neal Stephenson’s Seveneves in Best Novel, The Sandman: Overture in Best Graphic Story, and Strange Horizons in Best Semiprozine.  In other cases, the line is more fuzzy.  Daniel Polansky’s The Builders, for example, was a plausible nominee in Best Novella, coming from the strong, well-publicized Tor Novellas line and garnering a great deal of praise, but did the puppies’ influence help to push it past equally plausible nominees like Elizabeth Hand’s Wylding Hall and Kai Ashante Wilson’s The Sorcerer of the Wildeeps?  We won’t know for certain until the nominating stats are released after the Hugo ceremony (and perhaps not even then), and in the meantime this year’s ballot is a lot less clear-cut than last year’s.

To the puppies, this no doubt looks like a winning gambit.  To those of us who are adults, it’s just more silliness.  We are neither as stupid nor as rigid as they keep insisting that we are, and are perfectly capable of parsing these nuances.  And if this year’s Best Novella shortlist is a lot less exciting than the one I had hoped for–and which I think had a good chance of coming about–well, that’s how I feel about the Hugo most years.  I keep repeating this, but it really needs to be said again and again: despite the puppies’ ridiculous claims, the Hugo is not, and has never been, an elite or rarefied award.  If the puppies’ main accomplishment this year is to have pushed middling but not-awful work onto the ballot over better, more deserving nominees, well, then they’re no different from the majority of Hugo voters.

And that, I think, is the real reason why this ballot should give us hope for the future of the award.  In order to maintain their grip this year, the puppies’ best tactic was to veer into the mainstream, and nominate work that closely resembles the kind of work that gets nominated for the Hugo anyway.  In the categories where they didn’t do this, they’re going to get trounced by No Award again.  In the categories where they did, if their nominees win, they will probably claim victory.  But hell, they were going to do that no matter what the outcome, and the rest of us are too smart to take that sort of thing seriously.  Whether or not they’re willing to admit it, the puppies have realized that the only way to win this game is to play it, the same way the rest of us do.


Of she starts off her post with this little gem.


Go ahead, show us all how adult all you kickers are by doing the same kind of crap that you all did last year.  Go ahead, No Award The likes of Jim Butcher and Toni Weiskoff, again.  Show us how above the pettiness you are, not.

Here’s Damien.

Thoughts on the 2016 #HugoAwards

Aaron Pounds.

Comments: At the outset, one must make clear that the list of 2016 Hugo Finalists is a giant pile of crap. Although a few gems can be found among the steaming rancid pile – Ancillary Mercy, The Fifth Season, Uprooted, Binti, and a handful of others – most of the finalists on this year’s ballot have no business being on any awards list of any kind. Some of them really didn’t deserve to be published to begin with, and probably wouldn’t have been if it were not for a certain racist, sexist, homophobic dipshit with an ax to grind and a pile of money handed to him by his mother.

Given that there is little that can be done about the overall low-quality of the Hugo ballot this year, the question to be asked is this: What can one learn about the state of the slates from this set of results. What is most interesting about the 2016 Hugo finalists is that they offer fairly strong evidence that the Sad Puppy campaign that Larry Correia started four years ago in a desperate attempt to “Get Larry a Hugo” has been reduced to an almost trivial irrelevancy. Despite their claims to be “embiggening” the Sad Puppy campaign for its fourth iteration, the reality is that it has shrunk away to almost nothing of consequence. As a means of pushing works onto the Hugo ballot, the Sad Puppy campaign was a mostly dismal failure. For the most part, the only works that the from the Sad Puppy list that made it onto the Hugo ballot fell into two categories:

  1. Things that had already been nominated for a Nebula Award (a list that includes Ancillary Mercy, Uprooted, Binti, Ex Machina, Star Wars: The Force Awakens, Mad Max: Fury Road, and, arguably, Alyssa Wong).
  2. Things that also appeared on the Rabid Puppy slate.

The two definite exceptions are the nominations for John Joseph Adams and Mike Glyer, who were both on the Sad Puppy list but not on the Rabid Puppy slate and not nominated for a Nebula Award, which is unsurprising as the Nebula Awards do not have either a Best Editor or Best Fan Writer category. Given that both men have been previously nominated for multiple Hugos, thinking they needed a Puppy assist to get onto the ballot seems to be quite stretch. The other possible exception is Alyssa Wong, who was also on the Sad Puppy list but not on the Rabid Puppy slate: She had a short story nominated for a Nebula Award in 2016, and although that doesn’t exactly match being a finalist for the Campbell Award for Best New Writer, it seems close enough to say that it counts.

On the other hand, several works and individuals that were quite prominent on the Sad Puppy list were unable to get onto the list of finalists. The Puppies promoted a novelette by Clifford Simak that didn’t find its way onto the ballot. Novels by Michael Z. Williamson and John Ringo appeared on the Sad Puppy list but failed to reach the list of finalists. The short story Tuesdays with Molokesh the Destroyer, originally put on the 2015 Sad Puppy slate despite being ineligible in that year, also failed to make it to the finalists list despite actually being eligible this year. Episodes of Daredevil and Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D. promoted by the Sad Puppies failed to make the ballot. And so on. As Anne Bellet said last year, Theodore Beale is in the driver’s seat, and the Sad Pups are just along for the ride. At this point, it should be obvious to anyone who has been paying attention that the Sad Puppies have essentially been doing nothing but carrying Theodore Beale’s water for him for two years now. As an independent force, they are effectively irrelevant now. They have, in the list of finalists that appears below, been reduced to asterisks, which note which finalists appeared on the Sad Puppy slate.

Vox obsession is not pretty.  He does live in their heads.

Cultural Vandalism?

This year, the nominees follow a similar path from those of 2015 – a clear hijacking of the voting process in order to fill up categories with those deemed preferable to the ‘evils’ of SJWs and political correctness gone mad. This year’s illustrious group includes a writer for World Net Daily, a YouTube channel with screeds dedicated to GamerGate endorsed targets Anita Sarkeesian, Bob Chipman and Tim Schafer, a related work entitled ‘Safe Space as Rape Room’, and of course Vox Day, with one piece called ‘SJWs Always Lie’. It’s not even worth making a sarcastic joke about their success in keeping politics out of SFF. There’s no irony bell loud enough to convey the emotion.

There are of course some excellent and very worthy nominees amongst the mess – Alyssa Wong, Nnedi Okorafor, Ann Leckie and NK Jemisin being notable examples. I’m happy their work is being recognised, and I’m disappointed their joy has been tainted in such a way….

Awards are not and have never been solely used as a marker of merit, and shouldn’t be viewed as such: But what they can be used for is to provide a weathervane of the changing industry and the people and trends that drive it. That’s why what the Sad/Rabid Puppies have done matters. They may not be the most prominent voices in the industry, and their abhorrent views may be condemned in public, but the fact that they were allowed to fester for so long undisturbed speaks volumes.

Awards send signals, and when for the second year in a row the same names dictate to a big enough crowd how to hijack proceedings and shut out deserving, inclusive voices in favour of anti-progressive screeds and bigotry, that sends a message Vox Day and his ilk intend for us to hear loud and clear – You are not welcome in this community. This sandbox is ours and your presence in it should be mocked, vilified and erased….

Science-fiction and fantasy will move forward. It will continue to evolve and tell amazing, strange, radical and highly political stories, as it has always done, and the Puppies will cheer false cries of victory regardless of the outcome of the Hugo Awards: Their choices winning will be a sign that the industry agrees with them, and another No Award sweep (which is my predicted outcome) will simply be proof that they’re downtrodden underdogs who stood up against “Outrage Culture”. The truth is that nobody wins in this scenario because we end up having to participate in their Us Versus Them mentality in order to show a sturdy opposition to their nonsense.

We Have Always Been Here & Always Will Be: On the Hugo Awards and Cultural Vandalism

I will point out that it was the Kickers who gave “If you were a dinosaur my love” and other such gems Nebula and Hugo awards long before the puppies came along. The vandalism has been a long term effort by the likes of people like this for some time.

Jerry Pournelle on his nomination.

I seem to have been nominated for a Hugo. “Best Editor, Short Form”. The only work mentioned for the year 2015 is There Will Be War, Volume Ten” released in November. It is of course a continuation of the There Will Be War series which appeared in the 1980’s and early 90’s, of which the first four volumes were recreated with a new preface during 2015; the rest are scheduled to come out in the next couple of years. I’ve edited a lot of anthologies, starting with 2020 Vision in 1973 (I think it will come out in reprint with new a introduction and afterword’s by the surviving authors next year. I did a series of anthologies with Jim Baen that was pretty popular, and one-off anthologies like Black Holes and The Survival of Freedom, amounting to more than twenty over the years, but this is the first time anyone has ever nominated me for an editing Hugo – and actually the first time I ever thought of it myself.

When I first started in this racket, Best Editor Hugo usually meant one for the current editor of Analog or Galaxy. That spread around over the years, but it meant Editor in the sense of someone employed with the title of Editor, not a working writer who put together anthologies, sometimes for a lark.

I used to get Hugo nominations all the time in my early days, but I never won. My Black Holes story came close, but I lost to Niven’s “Hole Man”. Ursula LeGuin beat me for novella. There were others. Our collaborations routinely got nominated, but again usually came second, so at one point I was irked enough to say “Money will get you through times of no Hugo’s much better than Hugo’s will get you through times of no money,” and put whatever promotion efforts I had time for into afternoon and late night talk radio shows and stuff like that. Which worked for sales, but not for Hugo awards. I’m unlikely to get this one – I’m a good editor but that’s hardly my primary occupation – but I admit I’d like to. I was already going to Kansas City this August, so I’ll be there, but I doubt there’s much need to write a thank you speech.

He’s too modest and definitely deserves the award for his latest and all the other anthologies that he’s done.

The Hugo’s turn rabid? My dear the Hugos have been deathly ill for some time.

After last year’s backlash, the Sad Puppies didn’t run a slate for 2016, but a kind of recommendation system instead. The Rabid Puppies ran a slate, same as before. And 64 of its 81 slate items appeared on the final ballot. File770 has a good analysis, making it really clear which (few) works were non-Rabid nominees.

But the Rabid Puppies are playing a clever game this year. In the bigger categories, their slate nominees are less visible, because many of them are completely obvious finalists. Like Seveneves. Brandon Sanderson. The new Sandman from Neil Gaiman. After last year’s more obscure “mostly things published by Vox Day” offering, it seems they’ve decided to take everyone down screaming with them, by nominating things that were bound to get nominated anyway and then taking the credit for their appearance. It’s kind of the equivalent to me telling you guys to go and see The Force Awakens because it’s completely awesome, and then claiming that it became such a big hit because of my recommendation.

It’s also clearly trolling. It gives them an easy success, but it also gives them the chance to take down authors that might disagree with them. They ignored any writers’ requests to be left off the slate, and they’ve included big-name authors who clearly have a liberal bent totally opposed to their own agenda. And that’s win-win-win for them, in their distorted world view. If one of those shoo-in nominees wins, the Rabid Puppies win! If they get No Award-ed for being on the slate, the Rabid Puppies still win, because they’ve proved that the voting is all about the evil liberal agenda, and not about celebrating good works. And if the authors withdraw from consideration because of the power of the slate, then the Rabids get to tear even more liberal works off the ballot, and feel smug and powerful into the bargain.

And as we get into the slightly more obscure, and less nominated, categories, their trolling presence gets stronger, and weirder. I haven’t read any of those works, and perhaps you shouldn’t judge a story by its title, but it seems impossible for the Hugos to be a serious award when things like “Space Raptor Butt Invasion” are nominated. Some of the nominees are specifically about the Hugo controversy — like the short story If You Were An Award, My Love, which is clearly a play on the 2014 nominee If You Were a Dinosaur, My Love — or are entirely about sticking the middle finger up at their opponents. We’re talking works with titles like SJWs Always Lie: Taking Down the Thought Police and Safe Space as Rape Room.

The Hugos Turn Rabid

Chuck Wendig see a problem.  Well, Chuck your side created the problem by nominating all that crap according to agenda rather than readability or quality.

She doesn’t like it that so many “deserving” were knocked off the ballots.  Here’s a clue, put down the cat your petting, and get your friends to register and vote. That’s what the puppies did.

I am angry for the people who got knocked off the ballot because of the RP tactics. I’m particularly frustrated for the Campbell candidates who will never have another shot at that award because they’re out of time. Andy Weird was an RP pick, and I’m pretty sure he would have made it on the ballot anyway, but there are still three RP picks who are on that list and probably wouldn’t have been otherwise. Three slots that are denied to great writers who may never get another shot, because someone is playing silly games with the system.

I’m frustrated that seeding the RP ballot with a small number of works that would have been nominated anyway adds new kinds of dilemmas for many voters. Angry that many good works got bumped by crap VD was pushing. If you need any proof that his campaign has nothing to do with which works he thinks are genuinely good, take a look at some of the titles he picked, or look at what he said about one of the novels he chose (Seveneves).

Last year, after a lot of consideration, I voted No Award to all the puppy-related picks because I couldn’t condone slate nominating tactics. I still can’t support them.

But this year, if I do that, I’m also punishing works and writers who would have been nominated anyway, and I can’t make myself do that. Hell, I can’t No Award something I nominated–Bujold’s novella, The Martian–because that also makes a mockery of the process.

So this year, I’ll do this: I will make a good faith effort to sample everything on the ballot that I haven’t previously read/watched/listened to if it is accessible. I do not promise to finish everything, or even to go past the first page of anything completely offensive. I will not spend money on accessing RP picks, so if it’s not in the voting packet, available for free online, or available through my library, I won’t sample it.

It’s as if these people did not understand that all those supporting registrations were going to mean a LOT of nominating votes this year and guess what, they were more than likely NOT going to be darlings of the kickers.  No awarding everything in sight has consequences.

Phil Sandifer, lets burn it all down AGAIN.

And so once again, the course is clear: we must resist. With every tool we have, we must resist. The highest priority, of course, is passing E Pluribus Hugo, the repaired nomination system that will serve to prevent this from happening again. Also important is No Awarding.

But, of course, that’s more complicated this year than last because of Vox’s tactic of poison pill nominees (which I also called last year, because for a supposedly brilliant tactician Vox sure is predictable). Some of these will hopefully correct themselves – both Stephen King and Neil Gaiman are occupying slots in all-Puppy categories and have the power to withdraw to make room for people that were kept off the ballot by Vox Day. I have a tough time coming up with any justification for such decorated writers not to do so.

Other categories are trickier. Alastair Reynolds. for instance, has been outspoken about not wanting to be on Puppy slates. But the odds are overwhelming that the #6 nominee in Best Novella is just the Puppy pick that got beaten out of the category, and frankly, I’d rather have an unwilling Puppy on the ballot. Similarly, I have a lot of sympathy for Andy Weir, who was kept off the ballot by Vox last year, and who almost certainly would have made it on his own merits this year, and it’s as hard to suggest he should turn down his Campbell nomination because a fascist troll slated him as it is to suggest Gaiman shouldn’t. Andrew Hickey has suggested putting the poison pill choices below No Award while excluding the other Puppy picks entirely, which is probably what I’ll do. But I won’t pretend it’s not a genuinely hard decision.

Implicit in that is the fact that I’m going to buy a Mid-Americon II membership and vote, and I’m not going to vote No Award in all categories this year. More than that, I think you should too. For two basic reasons. The first is that there’s still incredible stuff on the ballot. Heaven Sent” and “AKA Smile” are both up for Best Dramatic Presentation Short Form. Ex Machina and Mad Max: Fury Road are facing off in Long Form. Binti got in for Best Novella, the lone non-Puppy of the category. And most importantly, you can have the utter joy of voting for The Fifth Season for Best Novel. I nominated those works. I’m glad they got on. And I intend to see that through to the end.

The other reason is that E Pluribus Hugo probably will pass, and a sense of normality will be restored to the Hugos. They’ll return to being one of the handful of awards actually worth taking seriously. And it would be nice if the record books were not tarnished by SJWs Always Lie or the artist of a comic called “Gamergate Life” getting Hugos. This is the last line we have to hold against the fascist bullies before we can be done with them. Let’s fucking win this.

Because for all that the nominees are frankly worse than last year (Space Raptor Butt Invasion isn’t even one of the good Chuck Tingle books), there was, today, a reminder of why this is a fight worth having, and it was the Retro Hugos, awarded for work published in 1940 due to the lack of Worldcon that year. Overlooked by the Puppies despite the fact that there’s presumably loads of German sci-fi that would be right up their alley, these ended up having 481 ballots cast, about 12% as many as the main Hugos. And the results are marvelous – a mixture of big, iconic classics and oddballs of the finest sort. Look at that Graphic Story category, where the debuts of Batman, Captain Marvel, The Spectre, and the Spirit face off against a classic Flash Gordon serial. Look at Best Short Story, where one of the finest horror stories ever, Borges’s “Tlön, Uqbar, Orbis Tertius,” is up against tales by Robert Heinlein and Isaac Asimov. And look at the blunt proof that the Hugo crowd has never been hostile to conservatives, just to shitty and derivative crap, as both H.P. Lovecraft and E.E. “Doc” Smith’s Lensmen series make the ballot. It’s as phenomenal a list as the 2016 Hugos are a terrible one.

Phil doesn’t get it. It’s a fight the can’t win.  Look if 1000 Worldcon memberships go away, it’s dead.  The cons will not make money for their groups and no group can afford that more than once.  So if the kickers manage to REALLY piss off enough fans, and trust me, at this point, that’s incredibly easy, Worldcon dies.  These people want to burn their own house down because a troll is giving them gasoline.

The idiotic question of this years Hugos. Is Chuck Tingle a SAD Puppies plant?  Considering that “Butt Raptor” was on the Rabid list and not on the Sad list that’s a pretty easy thing to discover. As we have learned, when it comes journalism regarding the Hugos and the Puppie, when it comes to facts or the narrative, the narrative always wins.

I imagine that Vox was just trying to keep his entries more in line with what the kickers said they wanted.  Indeed, the kickers have nominated similar content in the past, if not so blatantly.


Mr. Hines is actually being nice, for a change. would that ANY of the kickers had tried that last year.

Perhaps if the puppy kickers would stop moralizing over LGBT and Social Justice and not arbitrarily everything that comes from Vox as bad simply because it  come from Vox they would realize that there are things that fandom needs to discuss and bring out into the light. Dirty and ugly things.

The Perversion of Science Fiction and Fantasy Fandom

“Safe Space” should be read and spread around, as should Moira’s piece.  SFF needs to confront it’s darkside.

Well Mr. Gerrold isn’t willing to apologize.

I would wish a space butt raptor invasion on him but he would probably like it.

Scalzi, Jemisin, and Wendig talk about Chuck Tingle.

Amanda Weighs in.

And so it continues — Hugo Awards Part Whatever

Is this the beginning of the next pressure campaign to get authors to withdraw because the were liked by the “wrong” fans.

Glenn Hauman: Neil Gaiman Does Not Need A Pity Hugo

Sorry, but authors don’t get to pick who their fans are.

Here’s Brad.

The 2016 Hugo award selection list (aka: final ballot) has been released, and we seem to be taking a trip down a familiar path. It’s Hatfields vs. McCoys, for yet another year. Or as one reader observed (last season) it’s just Campbellian vs. New Wave, for the umpteenth time. I’ve had several dozen e-mails cross my transom, all showing me what the “other side” is saying (behind both closed and open digital doors) and very little of it surprises me. The same personalities are involved. The same people are lobbying for the same result: NO AWARD for anything deemed to be part of Unfandom, so that Trufandom can rescue the Hugos from those nasty Unfans and their Unfannishness. Just gotta get Worldcon to Europe, so that rules changes can be cemented, and the Hugos will be even better insulated against Unfannery. Meanwhile, another bottle of vintage NO AWARD will be uncorked, to ensure that no rocketships are given to Unfannish types who aren’t properly bred and vetted.

I confess, the NO AWARD result (from 2015) was the only thing that truly surprised me, because not even I thought there would be enough resentful Trufans, all willing to cut the baby in half. But, not only was the baby cut in half, the ones wielding the blade cheered themselves doing the deed. They also handed out wooden CHORFholes, and thought that covering their wooden CHORFholes with a fig leaf of charity, would mask what was — beyond any shadow of a doubt — a complete and total dick move. Yeah, sorry, no. I realize that in the era of virtue-signalling slacktivism, charity is supposed to make dick moves bulletproof. But I am not sure that trick works anymore. That’s the problem with fig leaves: they cover so very little of the actual dickishness behind them.

But really, all of this has been talked to death in past iterations of the same conversation. Everyone knows its madness, and everyone also has an excuse. Everyone expects everyone else to admit wrong, and apologize, but everybody finds him or herself blameless. It’s not any single person that’s wrong with the Hugos, its the entire culture and concept of F/fandom (caps f, small f) that’s rotten. Oh, sure, there’s Scalzi and Beale, hammering away at each other with their egos, but that’s a bit like saying Hillary Clinton and Donald Trump invented the present 2016 Presidential mess, when they did not. Hillary and The Donald — two utterly self-serving narcissists — are merely emblematic of a deeper, much more pervasive problem in American culture. We (the nation) have lost our touchstones. We no longer have unifying identifiers, just as F/fandom (caps f, and small f) no longer has unifying identifiers. There are merely circles on a giant Venn diagram, not all of which overlap. And where there is no overlap, there is no commonality. No place in which to reach consensus. There is simply the jostling and friction of competing paradigms.

Which is what the Hugo Wars (or whatever we end up calling them) are all about: the F/fandom (caps f, small f) has ultimately fractured beyond repair. And the Hugos — the former totem for all — has been similarly fractured.

None of this happened overnight. None of it was the invention of a single individual. Just as dysfunctional families do not invent themselves from whole cloth. While the favored son stares in shock as his n’er-do-well sibling sets the drapes on fire, there’s much more going on than meets the eye. The burning drapes are merely the dividend of a thousand slights. And the favored son has the ignorant nerve to act surprised.

This is just plain common sense.

Amazing Steve weighs in.

My argument against slates has always been about the methodology, not the presumed issues that gave rise to them (be it push-back against diversity or the juvenile temper-tantrum that is Beale).  My advancement of the No Award strategy (and I was not the only one to suggest it) was predicated on the idea that a hard and fast line could be established:  either a work had been slated or it had not been.  This directly addressed the methodology of the puppy protest, in effect saying “slates and campaigning are not the way to go about registering your protest”.  It did not address the questions of whether or not their arguments were valid, nor did it shut them out of the process.

This, I believe, is a position that falls in line with the thinking of the vast majority of Hugo Award participants, who welcome anyone who wishes to join – so long as they respect the culture and institutions of the community.  No one is saying to puppies “do not participate”.  All that is being said is “don’t game the system”.

In conjunction with the No Awards voting strategy, I also strongly (and repeatedly) urged everyone who might have something nominated for an award last year or into the far future, to make a public statement that they do not want to be included on a slate and, if they become aware that they have been, they publicly ask to be removed.  Further, I asked that voters respect those public statements and to treat such nominees as if they were not on a slate, should they appear on the ballot.

This strategy does not rely on compliance from puppies.  This year there are several nominees who made such statements, found themselves on a puppy slate, asked to be removed and were ignored.  I have no problem including those authors on my ballot.  I am positive that the vast majority of voters have far less angst over including them in their votes than they do over other works that “would have been on the ballot anyway”, but which are not backed up by slate repudiation.

Absent repudiation, questions remain:  are they happy to be on the ballot regardless of how they got there?  Are they ok with being used as a shield?  How will they feel if it turns out that some other, non-slated work was knocked off the ballot because they said nothing?  (Recognizing that they have no control over placement on a slate is no cover for not having said anything previously.)

That’s harsh, I know.  And probably undeserved for the vast majority of people who are caught up in this.  But I see no downside to the essentially neutral statement “no one is granted the right to campaign for me”.  Even those who claim they wish to be uninvolved in “the politics” ought to recognize that they are involved, whether they want to be or not.  Silence can be interpreted in a thousand different ways.  “Don’t involve me” is unambiguous.

Last year I voted my favorite movie off the ballot – because it was on a slate.  I did my best to reach out to the film’s people and received no response.  It genuinely pained me to not vote for it.

This year, I have those I consider friends to be on the ballot.  It’s even harder to stick to my guns this year.  But I am doing so.


EPH will likely be ratified this year.  It is unlikely to have the positive effect we are hoping for, because up until now, the community has been reacting, has not been proactive.  If EPH stymies current puppy strategies, does anyone think they are going to throw up their hands and walk away?  Not after the victory of last year’s and this year’s shortlists.  Not after last year’s victory with GotG.  They’ll find some other way to “game the system”, because they are not going to stop.  It only takes one to advance an insurgency (and that is what this is;  it’s even been identified as such by the puppies themselves).

The only way we can successfully counter whatever unanticipated attacks things morph into going forward is to shield ourselves culturally, by putting ourselves in a position that allows us to ignore and discount whatever puppies may do that doesn’t respect the community.

No Awarding works that are on slates is one such action.  Another is to publicly repudiate slates, especially if you might find yourself on one someday.

Vote Your Conscience

Now it should be remembered that the people that Steve and the rest of the kickers are suggesting should be no awarded are supposedly their friends.  By and large the puppies are FANS, not pros and almost no puppies themselves are on the ballots.  Even when they are on the ballots, for instance “appendix “N”, “safe spaces” and Moira Greyland, they are there because they deserve to be because they address serious issues in SF community.  Frankly if the kickers want to burn down their own house because they can’t seem to get off their fat asses and nominate their choices, then  I don’t have a problem with the Hugos burning simply because of kicker spite.  What that will do to the pro community when the people the kickers “no award” have it demonstrated that the kickers do not consider them part of the community simply because the kickers don’t like some fan choices remains to be seen.

And another one from Slate.

Special update:
Phil Sandifer accuses Hugo nominated artist of child pornography.

Never mind the fact that Phil has supported child molesters in the past.

Smells like… Pedo Bear


More Hugo stuff



  1. OldNFO · April 28, 2016

    Thanks for taking the time to collate all this. It’s going to be interesting again this year!


  2. Pingback: Instapundit » Blog Archive » A ROUNDUP: Hugo Stuff.

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