The Obligatory Hugo Awards Recap Post

First and foremost, let’s just get this out of the way:

Congrats to the winners of last night’s Hugo Awards, including the Not The Hugo Award, the John W. Campbell award for new writer. Well done, all of you. Including up and coming sci-fi superstar, Noah Ward, who I’m sure is drunk somewhere right now, joy-barfing off a balcony.

And, also, to the Sad and Rabid Puppies, those charm school rejects who thought they could wrest control of the awards away from some mysterious vile cabal of PC CHORF SMOF SJWS, one likes to hope that last night was a demonstration of your noses being rubbed in the mess you made. I know, I know, “it’s about ethics in award nominating.”

*eyeroll so hard, neck snaps and head tumbles off of shoulders into dirt*

Listen, I’m not a big believer that awards are some kind of glorious, unshakable metric for the health or the merit of a genre or the books and authors inside it — I think, like most, I think it’s a good way to celebrate fandom and the industry and those people who have left footprints across the genre both big and small. It’s not the end-all be-all of anything, but they matter in their own way. And this year any hope of that happening was squirted out onto a rancid pee-pad thanks to those aforementioned charm school rejects.

All along, if the so-called “puppies” had just done a blog post like, “HEY WE THINK LOTS OF COOL FOLKS NEVER GET NOMINATED, SO LET’S GET TALK ABOUT THOSE FOLKS AND DON’T FORGET THAT YOU CAN NOMINATE ‘EM,” and then they did a big-ass reading list and not a slate, one expects the response would’ve been a vigorous shrug. But that’s not what they did. They came out of the gate swinging with a proper slate, a slate championing its diversity while actually working to undo the diversity of years past. (And fellas, a little pro-tip here: when your version of diversity includes those who are against diversity as a principle, you done fucked up. Making sure to include bigots and homophobes and other social malefactors is a pretty good way to show your true intentions. At the very least, it exposes you for the shitbirds you are.) They’ve been called on their bullshit time and time again throughout this awards season, called to the mat and challenged on every point, and not once did I see a successful or substantive rebuttal to those challenges. (I did, of course, see about 3,291 blog posts done in support of the Sad and Rabid Puppies, to which I might suggest that those writers actually remember that they’re probably supposed to be writing stories and not some never-ending screed-ifesto about SFF fandom.)

And of course, the Puppies locked arms with the worst amongst us: those human canker sores known as Gamer-Gate. (Next year, I hear the Puppies slate will be decided by Donald Trump’s skull merkin, worked like a puppet by the ghost of a drunk, racist Ayn Rand.)

Last night’s awards were a strong rebuttal against the SP/RP slate, because they didn’t get a single one of their nominations through to the actual stage and statue itself. In fact, in several categories, voters opted to fling the award out of the airlock and into the void of space rather than give it to undeserving nominees — or, at the very least, those nominees who were poisoned by their inclusion on the slate in the first place. (And here again, time to offer kudos to folks like Annie Bellet, Matthew David Surridge, and Marko Kloos for washing that stink off them. Because believe you me, that’s some stink, I admire them for wanting to freshen up.)

The Puppies continued to put forth this idea that they were finally reclaiming the Hugo Awards from some narrow slice of SFF readership — some toxic, politically-minded cult of secret governors who have throttled the award with their AGENDAS and IDEAS and I GUESS LOVE FOR THEIR FELLOW MAN, those monsters. And our righteous saviors seemed keen on breaking the back of that cult and finally, finally, the awards would be properly returned to the hands of real fans who appreciate that SFF should, I dunno, just be about white guys on rocketships and dragons having uncomplicated white guy adventures without any of that intellectual or social or political mess intruding upon the genre.

Except, that’s not how this works.

That’s not how any of this works.

As it turns out, when you attempt to identify the narrow slice and rip the votes away from them and into the hands of a wider audience of thousands, you actually learn that the wider audience of fans still don’t want the Puppies mucking up the award with their poo-caked paws. You learn that the fans will ride over the hills like an army, and they’ll lock arms and form a line that shan’t be crossed. The awards were positioned this year as finally being for the fans, and the fans showed up. And they thwacked the Puppies on the nose with rolled-up newspaper.

In other words?

You learn that the narrow slice may have not been so narrow, after all.

Also, as it turns out, the genre is often, maybe even always, political. Even when it’s not expressly so, fiction isn’t about some rote operational telling of stories. Science-fiction and fantasy, when operating well, serve as a bellwether for the world in which we live. It’s always been that way. Through history, we examine both the small books and films and comics and also the really popular ones to see what ideas and fears and yes even politics have seeped out of the public consciousness and conscience and into the stories that the public loves and shares. (Plus, a-doy, the Puppies were always a political slate. They forever claimed to want to extricate the genre from politics, which was the dumbest fake-out I’ve ever seen. It wasn’t even an act of artful misdirection. “I’m not stealing your hamburger,” they say, locking eyes with you as one big clumsy hand slides across the table noisily and indelicately steals your hamburger. When challenged on this, the thief offers the blistering rebuttal of, “…Nuh-uh.”)

The rebuke probably won’t stop the Puppies next year. But hopefully the same fans this year will come out for the nominating part, and not just the WHO GETS THE STATUE part, because that’ll be key to carrying this message through to the following season. At the very least, maybe it’ll spare us some drama, which overtook the award this go-round and, frankly, denied lots of folks a chance to get up on the stage (at Tobias Buckell’s place you can see who would’ve been on the menu had the Puppies not been a factor — that being a genuine fucking tragedy.) Hopefully the Puppies realize that they are marginal, and like Gamer-Gate aren’t puppies at all, but are rather a pack of sad dinosaurs shaking their tiny arms at the meteor above and these new wily mammals slinking around their clumsy, stompy feet. In a perfect world, next year we won’t hear their bleats and squawks of rage at a world that is changing. And in ten years, their existence will be a memory — fuel for our stories just as dinosaurs are fuel for the gas tanks in our automobiles.

I’m happy the awards experienced the push-back against the shitbirds.

I’m excited that fans and readers are maybe making a real representative push.

I’m sad that lots of folks near the ballot never got on it.

And I’m bothered that all this had to happen in the first place.

Just the same: fuck the Puppies.

The genre will keep on keeping on.

No matter what happens:

Go buy books.

Share the love of those books.

Talk about them. Give them to others. Get on social media and crow about them.

Don’t be afraid of ideas and politics and people who aren’t like you.

Embrace it. Come into the pool. The water’s warm. The drinks are cold.

The stories are amazing.

Read on.

130 comments

    • I am a fairly new sci-fi writer who has spent a lifetime as a social justice advocate (feminist, anti-racist, anti-Anti-Semitism, anti-homophobia/heterosexism, anti all the isms, basically, that oppress people) and I have been following this Hugo Awards controversy for these last two years.

      I just read Breitbart News Network’s rendition (http://www.breitbart.com/london/2015/02/05/the-hugo-wars-how-sci-fis-most-prestigious-awards-became-a-political-battleground/) of the most recent battles and now yours, but I am shaking my head. Since you are both white males of a certain age (close to mine, I think; I’m 61), intelligent and caring about these issues, I don’t know or understand how you could have gotten things so terribly wrong, but you both have.

      Here is the crux of your “argument,” Mr. Wendig, I think: “The Puppies continued to put forth this idea that they were finally reclaiming the Hugo Awards from some narrow slice of SFF readership — some toxic, politically-minded cult of secret governors who have throttled the award with their AGENDAS and IDEAS and I GUESS LOVE FOR THEIR FELLOW MAN, those monsters. And our righteous saviors seemed keen on breaking the back of that cult and finally, finally, the awards would be properly returned to the hands of real fans who appreciate that SFF should, I dunno, just be about white guys on rocketships and dragons having uncomplicated white guy adventures without any of that intellectual or social or political mess intruding upon the genre.”

      THEY’RE ALL WRONG for championing those who agree with them or no one is: you have to choose one or the other position, to be consistent.

      Then there is the “Sad Puppies” moniker, which I know you and Mr. Breitman aren’t responsible for, but you both use it with derogatory relish. It’s the same attitude that I find all over the internet whenever anyone protests sexism, racism, intolerance and prejudice but is somehow not supposed to be doing that: we get called “PC,” or “bleeding hearts,” or other such apparent put-downs. But, what you slammers don’t realize is that you make yourselves appear foolish and ignorant when you utilize that terminology and attitude to deride someone’s complaints. 1) You never address the substance of their complaints; 2) You engage in name-calling rather than logical argument, showing your lack of attention to the topics being raised; 3) You exhibit the characteristics of those you are attempting to put down (using short-hand to refer to individual members of groups which is “painting them all with the same brush,” not paying attention to actual differences of opinions.

      After reading and considering many posts on these topics, I am left to wonder exactly where it all went wrong and how to fix it, but I have no quick solutions. I do know that engaging in more name-calling, disrespectful generalizations and other slamming behaviors help nothing and no one.

      Please consider the actual issues and topics each group is raising? Please look beyond rhetoric and do not join the masses in quick responses and short-hand slams?

      BTW: if I were to guess, I probably agree mostly with you, but I object to your slant on it.

      Those are my requests.

      Best to you,

      Sally Ember, Ed.D.

      • I’m not sure what article you just finished reading, but I this one addresses the substance of those complaints quite a bit. As for name calling, and general slamming behaviors, you may want to go to the source and read some of the crap, and I use that term to be accurate, that Vox Day puts out. Then compare it to what you find here.

        After 3 years of dealing with the issue, and having escalating behavior on from Sad Puppies/Rabid Puppies, I’m not surprised by “…name-calling, disrespectful generalizations and other slamming behaviors…”. I am surprised by how restrained they are.

        As someone who loves books and SFF, this whole thing has made me fairly furious with some of the authors who’s work I enjoy. Their attempt to hijack the Hugo awards simply to make a statement about what they think the rest of us should be enjoying by obeying the letter of the rules while RAPING their spirit, has left a number of us apoplectic. To whit, the fact that quite a few of their nominations were grossly subpar to the the entrants they pushed out is insult to injury. I can assure you that this ‘slant’ is fully shared by a lot of people, and many of us have far harher things to say that would land us in the spam oubliette.

      • Um…you do realize, do you not, that “Sad Puppies” is not a slam? It is the moniker chosen by that group as their preferred name. Same for the Rabid Puppies. This is like getting upset at the New York Times for printing “Washington Redskins” on its sports page. Yes, “Sad Puppies” can be construed as derogatory (and what did man’s best friend ever do to deserve the association?!) but it’s what the group calls itself.

        Now, “charm school rejects,” maybe, except there is so much truth in that description…

        Also, I’m unsure what you mean by this: “THEY’RE ALL WRONG for championing those who agree with them or no one is: you have to choose one or the other position, to be consistent.”

        I think the position taken in this post and on this blog is incredibly consistent and clear. And has been, for some time. In addition, the quote you lifted from the post is not an “argument:” it’s pretty much the Sad/Rabid Puppies’ stated purpose, styled in Wendig’s trademark prose.

        In addition, if you can’t figure out where it all went wrong, and if you can’t identify that Chuck Wendig did, in fact, address the substance of their complaints (in a polite nutshell: the SF/F books the Sad Puppies think should be nominated for and winning awards based on popular votes aren’t) then perhaps additional reading and research is indeed warranted. Protip: Breitbart is not exactly an unbiased source sans a very specific agenda. Just sayin’.

  • Read on.

    Indeed, Chuck. That’s all we can do. Read on, and nominate what we love. Not because of shadowy non existent non puppy slates or overt puppy slates. But spread the good stuff, far and wide.

  • Looks like the awards proved the Sad Puppies point, that people are voting purely out of spite or on political lines. You even acknowledge this but you don’t seem to make the connection that it proves what they’ve always been saying. You’ve labelled the nominees as undeserving simply because of who supports them and who’ve they’ve aligned themselves with.

    Obviously the Puppies can’t be marginal if their very presence has dramatically altered people’s voting decisions, or as you say opted to “fling the award out of an airlock”.

    • No, they’ll claim it proved their point. Their point (which was really many points delivered through a series of ever-shifting goalposts) was never made, and never proven. They had a limited idea about what fans were or wanted (basically, that fans wanted some old-timey apolitical traditional white guy version of SFF that actually was never the dominant mode of the genre), and when they demanded an answer from the choir, the choir sang a different song than they expected to hear.

      Their effect on the awards were not marginal — they changed this year for the worse. But their *result* was marginal. They accomplished nothing. They did not get a single victory — though again they will shift the goalposts and claim that this was always victory, which if so, is particularly crass and actually rather cruel to the slate they got nominated. “Sorry, SAD / RABID PUPPIES slate, you were actually just there as a weapon to be used and then discarded — hope you didn’t expect to actually win anything.”

      — c.

      • Also, technically, they DID get a SINGLE victory. Guardians of the Galaxy, from their slate, won best dramatic presentation (long form). That one was from their slate, though nobody ever seems to mention it. Not even the Puppies themselves, for some reason.

        Of course, it’s the victory that largely doesn’t matter, and everyone would probably have voted in anyway, which is probably why nobody mentions it. :)

      • You don’t read the original Sad Puppy, Larry Correia, do you? He has been saying for months his point has been made. I believe he said the same last year. Jp

        • Well that’s nice. Of course it doesn’t mean anything since Larry is no longer in control or alone in the Puppie movement. Like it or not, he birthed this beast.

  • August 23, 2015 at 9:37 AM // Reply

    I’m still not convinced there was any actual overt connection between Sad Puppies and Gamergate, beyond the coincidence of them both holding similar attitudes and so advocates of one cause being likely to be natural advocates of the other, and I think making too much of that connection overstates the case.

    Either way, though, I can’t help noticing that the Hugos’ Puppy repudiation (re-pup-diation?) echoes the way that the media most highly-ranked for popularity by Alexa uniformly rejected Gamergate’s positions in its overall coverage of the affair.

    Funnily enough, the reaction of both causes to being rejected has been effectively the same—to allege some kind of vast conspiracy that they were on the losing end of, and they are the true face of fandom after all.

    Or, as Jo Walton (who got bumped off the ballot for Best Related Works by the Puppies noms this year) put it in 1998, “The lurkers support me in email.”

    • I don’t know what you mean by “overt connection” when it comes to the Sad Puppies and Gamergate. Since neither are a well defined organization, only online movements, it’s hard to tell at the best of times. I do know that VD of the Rabid Puppies has been quite “overt” in his overtures towards Gamergate – during the Hugo voting period, he repeatedly tweeted imploringly to Gamergaters to engage, and only in the last 24 hours he crowed to them (again on Twitter) that if it hadn’t been for the puppies, Anita Sarkeesian would have made it to the Hugo ballot.
      The connection is there, if you care to look.

  • Yeah, the silly amongst us really need to stop using GamerGate as a catch all “Bad fan who thinks bad thoughts” boogieman. Sad Puppies existed long before GamerGate, and GamerGate has nothing to do with the Hugos.

    Having said that, the No Award thing played right into the Puppies’ hands. It would have been far better to have followed what GRRM suggested back in April:
    http://grrm.livejournal.com/418643.html

    By trashing the Hugos just to spite them the Sad Puppies are just going to claim it proves their point about the Hugos being fixed by some sort of political cabal — and unfortunately, it’s looking like they might have a point.

      • I haven’t really seen any proof of that, beyond that Vox Day is a GG supporter and a few Puppy folk made noises about how nice it would be if GamerGate got involved. I never saw any real sign they actually HAD in noteworthy numbers, though.

        I’m willing to believe there’s some overlap in the membership because they tend to have the same sorts of attitudes, but I think there’s a bit too much of a tendancy to tar everything with the GamerGate brush and come off looking like the boy who cried wolf.

        • Thing is, it’s tricky to prove an “explicit” link because there is no “explicit” anything with GamerGate. They’re not an army of singular vision — they’re a mob of like-minded assholes, and that mob has signed onto the SP/RP campaign quite happily. And SP/RP quite happily invited them multiple times, and shares membership, memes, and interest.

        • You want to see proof? Go back and look at the #HugoAwards hashtag on Twitter. Check out the accounts making pro-Puppy comments. Count the number of GG-related usernames, bios and user images. It’s right there, for all to see.

          THE CALL IS COMING FROM INSIDE THE HOUSE.

          • August 23, 2015 at 4:50 PM //

            Okay, that’s fair. And enough other people are reporting an overlap that I suppose it must be I just wasn’t looking in the right places.

            That being said, if there is such an overlap, it certainly sheds new light on just how small the GamerGate movement really is. Even if every single Puppy voter were a GamerGater, there were only about a thousand of them who could afford to pony up the $40 necessary to cast their vote?

          • Statistical estimates put the total number of GamerGate supporters at somewhere around 10,000, at the peak of the movement last year.

            So 1/10th of those, willing to pony up the $40 to vote? Sounds about right to me.

        • If you go to the #HugoAward hashtag on Twitter you’ll see a LOT of Sad/Rabid Puppies with GamerGate avatars. I’d say about have the vocal supporters on Twitter are also GamerGaters, if not more. The movements are clearly linked even if they deny it. They really don’t try to hide it all, which is is the funny thing.

    • The idea that giving No Award, something that is explicitly written into the rules for longer than most of the voters have been alive, is somehow “trashing” the Hugos is an idea that needs to be put to rest. It did what it was designed to do.

      The real issue is the sensitivity of the nomination process to slate voting; that’s what needs to be addressed.

      • And was addressed at the Business Meeting. E Pluribus Hugo (which changes the way nominations are counted) gives voting blocs power proportionate to their size (so a block of 20% of the nominators can place one item on the ballot, which is fair).

    • Of course, the thing about a cabal is it’s a *small minority* wielding disproportionate power. A majority vote from the fans isn’t a cabal. A result applauded by a few people the pups want to designate as a cabal still doesn’t make it the work of one.

      The *actual* fans outnumbered the self-described “true” fans. As is so often the case.

  • Also, as it turns out, the genre is often, maybe even always, political. Even when it’s not expressly so, fiction isn’t about some rote operational telling of stories. Science-fiction and fantasy, when operating well, serve as a bellwether for the world in which we live. It’s always been that way.

    THIS. So much this. I want to marry this post, but I suspect the BF would mind. All kidding aside, this is effing brilliant.

  • You know, if JCW or VD actually won the award via the ethical route, I wouldn’t be happy, but also, I wouldn’t care. What was particularly tiring about the SP/RD rhetoric was their intellectual dishonest, and their repurposing of the diversity movement–that homophobes and white supremacists are locked out of the awards by women, POC and LGBT folk.

  • I’m sure this won’t be the last post I read about this year’s Hugos, but I doubt I’ll read a better one. Fantastic post, man, just fantastic.

  • All I can say is…ha, ha. Joke’s on you, puppies.

    But of course, now they will play the victim again, which is the standard right-wing gambit when they’re balked. It’ll be more “SJW-socialists-homos have denied us….” blah, blah, blah. This would be more enjoyable if their rhetoric were less predictable.

    Good post, Chuck, and kudos to fandom for standing up to the dip-shits.

  • The only other person I know of who used the word “shitbird” was my father, who has passed. Thanks for the moment of nostalgia.

    • My husband uses it as a way to express what a person is when you’re on a two-lane highway road, and you want to pass a guy, but the guy in the other lane is paralleling the guy you want to pass. Did that make sense?

  • Well considered, well said.

    “Also, as it turns out, the genre is often, maybe even always, political.”

    Yes, indeed. Those who don’t know that don’t know their history, or the genre.

  • Oh, how I yearn for the “innocent days” of my youth when all was peace and love tucked behind tie-dyes, cotton skirts, and Birkenstocks.
    Alas, I may still don the clothing of my time (because it’s comfortable, damn it, and not full of petroleum-based fibers), but it’s authors like you who keep me tethered to the 21st Century world of political worms who can infiltrate even the honorable Hugo Awards. Sheesh! I’m glad that the SP gang is around, not because I support them but because their existence reminds me to be ever vigilant against the trappings of right-wing rhetoric.
    Thank you, Chuck, thank you bunches.

  • I scrolled past all of the other Hugo talk on Facebook until I found this post, because it’s what I was really looking for. I just didn’t realize it until I saw it.

    As always, thank you for this amazing post, Chuck.

  • Annie Bellet is not celebrating: http://www.wired.com/2015/08/won-science-fictions-hugo-awards-matters/

    > For Bellet, the Sad Puppies aren’t abstractions—they’re people she actually knows. She thinks Correia is a “great guy” and loves his seven-book Monster Hunter series. And she once considered Torgersen an ally. They met in a workshop. “We came up as baby writers together. We were friends—and I’m using the past tense,” she said, wiping away tears. “He’s hurt a lot of people.”

    > Blonde-haired, fair-skinned, and “covered in tattoos,” Bellet is from Portland, Oregon. “I’m adopted, and I have a sister who is black, a sister who’s Vietnamese. My mom is a lesbian. I grew up in a liberal, inclusive environment. Still, I broke a lot of noses [after hearing] the N-word growing up, trying to defend my little sister. So I do not understand this white persecution narrative.”

    > Bellet said she thinks Beale “rode” Correia and Torgersen “like ponies. I told Brad that. He said, ‘Just because we’re on the freeway in different cars heading the same direction doesn’t mean we’re together.’ I said, ‘Dude, you’re in the same car, and Vox Day is driving.’ He doesn’t get it. It makes me so sad.”

    There’s nothing to celebrate here. It’s just a vat of people hurting other people, and there’s three works and an editor who don’t get the recognition they deserved. Instead of all these for-the-nth-time “fuck the Puppies” pieces coming from you, Scalzi, and elsewhere, I’d like to see something

    – celebrating who actually won the goddamned awards, including _the first Chinese novelist winner in Hugo history holy shit how did it take so long_
    – recognizing people who would have had a shot if not for the Puppies

    and, if possible,

    – doesn’t actually mention the Puppies

    • I congratulated the winners and linked to those who would have a shot if not for the Puppies.

      Not mentioning the SP/RP slate in a Hugo Awards recap post is like not mentioning the iceberg when you talk about the Titanic.

      If you don’t like the coverage here, I might recommend:

      – getting your own blog
      – getting away from this one.

      — c.

  • The Puppies believe there’s this cabal conspiring against them. They can’t or (don’t want to) understand that it’s actually thousands of individuals making their own decisions that led to the “No Award” decisions.

    • It’s a sad fact of human psychology everything is “proof” of a conspiracy theory. If there’s no proof, that’s proof of a cover-up.

  • This. Right here. This.

    I can’t help but wonder if the sad puppies will rouse again, with their red-pill mob, and attempt the same coup next year. Especially if they are claiming, as I have read in a few articles, that they got precisely what they wanted. Which was, evidently, all of the outrage/attention? To any event they did manage to unite the fandom, a fandom of dedicated writers and readers against them. Maybe there is some strange satisfaction in drawing lines in the sand, even if you don’t get your way? Hopefully, this means that they will pack up their toys and go home, though I doubt it.

    It was immensely satisfying to read the news this morning, this blog post amongst many, celebrating how diverse and curious my fellows in genre are and how unwilling they are to have anything dictated to them by anyone. It gives a girl heart.

    • Oh, they’ll be back Jen. People like VD never go away. And you astutely observe that the outrage/attention is part of what they seek, whether they realize it or not. There will always be groups like the Puppies, and in many arenas, their goals and results are far more tragic than affecting the outcome of an awards ceremony(I’m lookin’ at you, KKK). We must remain ever-vigilant against them.

  • Dangers of Skimming: Spent five minutes trying to find stuff to buy from hot up-and-comer Noah Ward. Rage quit. Light bulb. Chills of shame.

  • I think one victory the puppies can maliciously claim is that they forced other deserving nominees off the ballot, such as my friends at the “Verity!” podcast. Their schadenfreude will probably feed a renewed effort next year. This is all the more reason for more fans (of every interest and political stripe) to participate in the nomination process as well as the final vote.

  • Welp, I will need to get my ass together and nominate for next year, because the puppies will be back, and this time they will be more careful.
    The only reason there were any decent nominees in puppy-infested categories this time around was the puppies’ own ineptitude.
    They lost slots nominating authors who weren’t in on the scam and honorably opted out.
    And they nominated works that were not, in fact, eligible.
    As a result, good, deserving works made it onto the ballot, and won.
    Sasquan managed brilliantly to make a flawed result into a positive experience, but we all had a lot of just dumb luck.
    I don’t think we can count on a repeat of these puppy errors next year.
    What if the original Sasquan ballot, before the changes, had stood, and puppy slate after puppy slate had been the only options?
    It would have been unspeakable.

    This is the year that showed for real what is lurking in the muck, but we face a second year of slogging before we are out of this particular swamp.
    I think the hardest slog is still before us.
    The proposed reforms can’t kick in before Helsinki.

    I don’t want to see Noah sweep Kansas City.
    There is stellar work out there, and I want those who produce it to be recognized.
    The leftover statues this year are heart-breaking.
    But if the nominations process is not absolutely flooded with the independent choices of multitudes of readers, we could end up with a ballot entirely composed of puppy-slated choices.

    I don’t want counter slates (UGH).
    But there are 11K some people eligible to nominate.
    We all need to nominate the best of the best, or else the lock-step monsters will fill the ballot with crap again, and do it more skillfully.
    And we will all lose.

    It is bad enough looking at the list of Might Have Been for this year.
    Some of the losses may be only temporary – young, strong writers will continue to produce good work.
    But some of it is irrecoverable.

    Friends don’t let friends not nominate, pass it along.

  • Just FYI — the Worldcon business meeting just passed the “4/6 Proposal” by a very close vote. It’ll need to be ratified next Worldcon, so wouldn’t take effect until 2017, but if so, it expands the slots in each award from 5 to 6, but nomination ballots are reduced from 5 to 4. (So, in other words — you nominate 4 works in each category, for an eventual ballot that has 6 works in each category — thereby making it harder for slates to completely dominate.)

  • Normally I agree with your posts, but I don’t agree with this one.

    The Puppies wanted representation. Rather than asking, “why do you feel like you aren’t represented?” and, you know, behaving like intelligent, thoughtful, and educated adults, the response from the Hugos Fans had been demeaning and childish. “No, mine, go home racist pig-dogs!”

    The Puppies did a bad thing by trying to steal the awards. The TruFen also did a bad thing by trying exclude everyone who didn’t fit their definition of Fan. The community as a whole has suffered and continues to suffer as a result.

    • An interesting take on events.

      Unfortunately, the public and searchable statements of Beale, Correia and Torgersen regarding what they wanted pretty much invalidates the thesis that they “wanted representation” from the get-go. That was a ret-conned justification after the Puppy movement took off.

      • I disagree. I’ve been watching from the very first SP post, because as a Utah resident I follow a lot of Utah authors. Larry’s feelings got hurt, and he started this because he felt excluded. Was he? I don’t know. I wasn’t there. Did he blow things out of proportion? Definitely. But it doesn’t come from the place of evil everyone seems to think.

        • It may not have been born from evil, but it definitely has become that, especially with Vox Day’s Rabid Puppies. He’s now stated that he intends a scorched earth campaign against the Hugos. Larry may have been hurt, but he’s not stupid enough to carry on simply out of hurt. He intended to send a message, and now he has, even if the message has mutated into a much larger one than he intended. It’s funny, a number of his stories make reference to the fact that once events start, even for the the best of reasons, they quickly get out of control. Sad that he didn’t seem to connect that with his actions.

        • Larry from day one said he wanted to make heads explode and set up sides as us vs SJWs in SP1. I’m not saying it’s evil or a place of malice. I am saying its was misguided and not the way to win friends and influence people if your goal was to actually win a Hugo vs get nominees on the ballot.

    • First, asking for representation is not how you get awards.

      Second, many of them had already been nominated in years past. For the Campbell, for Hugos.

      Third, nobody is defining what fans can be or what fandom must be. Those authors had fans already. Awards do not perfectly encapsulate ALL BOOKS AND THEIR READERS, nor are they reflective of WHICH BOOKS SOLD THE MOST. Nobody “excluded” them. This isn’t the playground. Not winning an award isn’t exclusionary. Not being up for an award is not exclusionary. Lots of people — most, actually — are never nominated for awards, as it turns out. And most don’t whine about it. Better still, most don’t rig up a slate to drum up votes based on a series of easily disprovable “reasons.”

      “We care about diversity!” Not when you advertise some of the people on that ballot, no.

      “We’re not bigots.” Well, then don’t put bigots on the slate.

      “We’re just trying to return SFF to a more fun, less political time.” A time that never existed.

      “We’re just trying to be apolitical.” Sure, with a politically motivated slate. Wait, what?

      “We’re just trying to get authors on the ballot that deserve to be there but aren’t because of political reasons.” Except, some of them have been on the ballot before, and further, how exactly do you prove they were withheld from the ballot because of political reasons, again?

      “Something-something WRONGFANS TRUFANS etc. etc..” Who even said that? Nobody talks that way except the SP/RP.

      And on and on.

      GRRM has done a far better job dismantling their arguments — hell, lots of authors have from all corners of genre and fandom. Nobody here is a TRUFAN trying to exclude anybody else. So, yeah, I disagree. I think they did damage, yeah. Not to the community, because the awards and the community are not one and the same. But to the process, and to this year’s nominees (the Alfie winners) who got pushed to the margins.

      • Agreed on the first and second points. I think they approached the situation badly. Very badly. We’ve seen the results.

        I have personal experience contradicting the third, though. I commented on an article that as a fan, I was sad to see all the fighting. A Tor editor tracked me back to my Facebook page and spent two days verbally bludgeoning me for claiming to be a fan. According to him, I was merely a reader and had no right to claim the lofty title of Fan.

        It hurt my feelings a lot. I find it pathetic that a group of people who were generally ostracized as geeks and losers in high school for their interests are resorting to the same tactics now. I feel like I’ve been uninvited from a community that I loved. And it wasn’t the Puppies who did that.

        • It also wasn’t some organized group ‘The Fans’ who did that to you. The puppies deliberately set out to define who qualified as fans and to hijack SFF for their own ends. I’m sorry that a jerk of a TOR editor did that to you, but that person only represents them as I’m sure TOR and their authors would have been horrified by their actions.

          I like Larry Correia’s books, but I find this entire thing to be a mirror of the betrayal I felt when I learned what Orson Scott Card was like as a person instead of the marvelous person I imagined from his books. SP/RP tried to do to all of us what that TOR editor did to you, and that’s what’s reprehensible.

          I’ll continue to read Larry’s work and John C Wright and others as long as it’s good, but now I’m going to be giving second thoughts to who they recommend.

          That’s the damage they’ve done.

          • Yeah, but that’s not how it works. That’s not how it works at all. ;)

            The editor in question had a rousing discussion on his FB page (see link to note; also others, if you care to go back to April-ish on his wall) in which many other Fans joined him in bashing non-Fans.

            It isn’t only your favorite side that gets cut slack, while the other side gets crucified for the actions of people they don’t control. Either everyone on both sides is responsible for their members, or they’re not. Because fairness and balance and truth and light and huggable bunnies.

          • I’m not saying cut my favorite side some slack, I’m saying that the Puppies are out to do a specific thing, meanwhile readers, fans and authors aren’t some consolidated group. There are overzealous ‘Fans’ like the TOR editor and his friends, but not all ‘Fans’ – his definition or yours – follow his lead or agree with him.

            I’m not trying to make light of your experience, but I am pointing out that unlike the Puppies, there isn’t some consolidated ‘Fan’ movement. So in that sense, that’s exactly how that works.

          • I’ve never understood this line of reasoning. “Because x does not exactly match y, x is wrong and y is ancillary to the discussion.”

            You’re absolutely right. What the editor and his cronies did does not exactly match what the Puppies did. But it was still harmful to the community and the discussion. It definitely did not contribute to a peaceful resolution.

          • Totally an aside here, Miguel, but I’m guessing from your alignment in this discussion that you tend toward liberal. I got a chuckle from your “not all Fans” comment and it’s echo into the “not all men” movement. Yep, not all men rape. Not all Fans denigrate readers. But some do, and that’s enough to say something should be done about it.

          • Talk about painting with a broad brush.

            Did I, at ANY point suggest that nothing be done about it? DID I IMPLY IT WAS NOT A PROBLEM? NO.

            I find the application of ‘not all men…’ to be a construct not of liberals, but mostly conservatives attempting to distance themselves from any moral responsibility of the acts under discussion while allowing themselves to espouse the same underpinnings of the argument while deflecting further discussion when that is the very thing being discussed. In many ways, It’s the no true Scotsman argument in different guise.

            I also did not use the ‘not all men/fans’ statement. I pointed out that these actions were not carried out by an group organized for the sole purpose of doing this to you, unlike the Puppies which is a group organized to carry out their specific actions. That may sound like a ‘Not all’ argument, but there is a large difference between a group organized around a specific cause and members of a larger group which they do not represent doing something.

            People pirate software, but we do not consider all people to be software pirates. On the other hand, we consider all members of a group dedicated to software piracy to be software pirates. Why is that?

            You keep referring to the despicable actions of this TOR editor (and friends) as an excuse to proclaim a pox on all houses, with no regards to the fact that in this particular fight, there is a group (Sad/Rabid Puppies) dedicated to taking this kind of action, and everyone else, some of whom took a similar action against you. You’ve declined to make the distinction between some of those ‘everyone elses’ and the Tor editor and instead have imputed their actions (and the acts of his other adherents via FB) to the broader community.

            As to your statement:

            “I’ve never understood this line of reasoning. “Because x does not exactly match y, x is wrong and y is ancillary to the discussion.”

            You’re absolutely right. What the editor and his cronies did does not exactly match what the Puppies did. But it was still harmful to the community and the discussion. It definitely did not contribute to a peaceful resolution.”

            In this case we are discussing X, so Y IS ancillary. That doesn’t make Y unimportant, it just means it’s not the focus of the discussion. What you experienced is most certainly harmful to the community, but it is harmful in an different (not unimportant!) way than what the Puppies are doing, and what we are discussing here.

            It is unfortunate and as I’ve already stated you have my sympathies and support against that sort of treatment. I strongly urge you to continue to share you experience, especially with TOR management precisely because that kind of thing damages the community and needs to be addressed.

          • My entire point in commenting was to point out that people on both sides made mistakes and hurt the community. I think saying “Fuck the Puppies” is nonsense, because both sides have been in the wrong. I think the Hugo Fans need to take a hard look at what caused the Puppies to feel disenfranchised in the first place. But that’s all my opinion.

            As for our conversation, I’m done. I doubt your reading comprehension at this point (yes, you did say “not all Fans”; please re-read your comment) and the point I was trying to make was the exact one you reiterated. Now replace “not all men” with “not all Fans” and maybe you’ll understand.

            But I think it unlikely, do I wish you good day.

          • One.
            If you are going to quote someone, you’d better quote the entire contextually relevant portion, or expect to be called on it.

            Just so we are clear, you state I said: “not all fans”
            But what I said in total was: “There are overzealous ‘Fans’ like the TOR editor and his friends, but not all ‘Fans’ – his definition or yours – follow his lead or agree with him.”

            Please note the quotes around ‘Fans’ (like that), and the following statement “– his definition or yours –” which delineate that this is an arbitrary group you have created or defined either personally or by agreeing with another’s definition. That’s kind of important because I’m not providing the definition of the group here, you are, and that’s entirely different than saying ‘not all men’ because I’ve agreed with the definition of the term ‘men’ (no quotes). I do understand, but I see that the contextual point I was making got lost in the pedantry of the prose.

            Frankly, I don’t care about Fans verses Readers and I’d laugh in the face of anyone stupid enough to try and tell me that I’m not part of a group defined by likes and activities I participate in. That’s just a game of no true Scotsman.

            Two.
            You keep asserting that people on both sides have done wrong, and this is where the conversation breaks down. One side (Puppies), was explicit formed to DO the wrong. Status of membership in the group is defined by the wrong.

            There is no “…people on both sides made mistakes and hurt the community.”, there is only people in the community made mistakes and hurt people who then formed a group who’s membership in total was dedicated to hurting that community.”

            Stating your statement denies the reality that one side was formed for the explicit reason of hurting the other, and thus all members of the Puppies are by definition guilty of making mistakes and hurting the community, while the reverse is not true unless you’d like everyone who’s ever read SFF to apologize to the members of the Puppies.

            So yes “Fuck the Puppies”

            Three
            “As for our conversation, I’m done. I doubt your reading comprehension at this point…”

            Oooo, what an inventive and subtle way to call me stupid. You wound me. But go ahead and take your marbles home.

            Four
            I hope you do have a good day, honestly. I hope that you find more support against asshats like the TOR editor (you still have my, unfortunately stupid self’s). I meant what I said, make sure people know about it because in that you and I agree, excluding people from a community on the basis of arbitrary definitions is hurtful and stupid, and it’s ultimately what this whole thing is about.

          • Miguel, I apologize. You’ve engaged in good faith and I did not mean to dismiss you. You were getting shouty and I was getting frustrated, and I did not respond well. I reserve the right to take my marbles and go home if I choose, but not when I’m letting my emotions get the better of me.

            I’m obviously not expressing myself well. Let me try again: I think the Fan discussion is of central importance, not ancillary or tangential for the following reasons.

            The editor and people commenting in favor of the editor were all big “F” Fans (their definition, in the link I provided). Per their own words, they own the Hugos and WorldCon. They earned their big F through their continued participation in the event.

            They behaved in an insular and dismissive fashion with me. It’s not a stretch to assume these are the same people Larry ran afoul of, who made him feel dismissed and uninvited. Larry chose to hurt them back by trying to take away their toy they were so proud of. I disagree with that decision. It’s hurt a lot of people. But if those people hadn’t been so insular and hurtful to him, he would not have responded in kind.

            Does that make what he did right? No. But it doesn’t justify what they did either. That’s what I mean when I say both sides are at fault here.

            It’s a matter of defining where the conflict began. I believe it began when the Fans began excuding people. Identifying the true source of the conflict is the first step in resolving or at least managing it.

            We can choose to shout “Fuck the Puppies” or “Fuck the Fans” all day but what does it accomplish? It’s not helping heal the rift, and it’s leaving the door open for more damage.

            My suggestion is that both sides find someone willing to negotiate a truce. They stop calling names and stomping feet and focus on what makes them the same. We’re all SF. We all value our community, regardless of how we define it. What do they see as the best possible outcome that they can both agree on?

      • Here’s the link the editor dropped on my page:

        https://www.facebook.com/notes/10153353176205955/

        Salient quotes the aforementioned editor left on my page like so many deer droppings, in which he explain why I’m not worthy:

        “I’ve written a new Facebook “Note” that attempts to make clear why upholding the traditional fannish distinction between Reader and Fan does not mean that Fans despise or disrespect Readers or that editors who happen to also be fans don’t care about the non-fannish customers for their books. (The regular non-fan readers are always going to be the majority. They really do matter to us!)”

        “What distinguishes a fan from a reader is activity, participation. A reader is a _consumer_ of SF and fantasy. A fan is someone who takes her interest in the field to the next level by attending cons, belonging to clubs, publishing a fanzine or a blog, making and wearing costumes, writing and performing filksongs, etc., etc.”

        “So here we are with not hundreds of fans as in the 20 and 30s, or even thousands of fans as in the 50s, 60s, and 70s, but literally MILLIONS of people who love SF and fantasy and want to claim the, to them, generic, freely-available word “fan.” Who can blame them?”

        “Corny as it may seem, old-school fans, those who loved SF before the ghetto walls fell, and for whom finding fandom was like finding sanctuary, or maybe even the family they never had, quite naturally want to recognize, celebrate, and protect fandom and it’s identity.”

          • Never said it did. Not trying to excuse the actions of anyone on either side. That’s kind of exactly my point. Both sides have done not awesome things. Chuck, whose beard we honor here, is a fair, balanced guy. That’s why I read his blog. He posts things that aren’t unfairly biased for the most part. He was not aware of the contingent of TruFen marauding around excluding people, and I thought he’d like to be informed of such. It in no way makes the Puppies any better or worse. It just is.

            Both sides can share fault in this mess without needing to share equal fault or be dismissed as irrelevant. The universe is all kinds of shades of gray.

        • I consider the distinction between “Readers” and “Fans” nonsense. In the final analysis writing Science Fiction is something most authors do because they love to do it, they want to make a buck, and they are interested in entertaining their audience. If, along the way, they manage to stir some brain cells with some new ideas that’s a good thing too. I am primarily a “Reader” who has been avidly reading the stuff since the pulps of my youth, and collecting it through most of my adulthood. I have been to just a few Cons, met a few good authors and shared a bottle of good single-malt Scotch with a couple—Herbert, Dickson and Anderson come to mind—and, as a retired Marine, pulled Security at one or two. I don’t read or write SF blogs, do elaborate costumes or join Puppy Clubs. I buy the stuff and read it because I like it, and the authors I read fall on both sides of the nerdgate Mason-Dixon Hugo Line. Whether or not an author or an editor wins or doesn’t win a Hugo is immaterial to me, as are his or her ethnicity, religion, sexual preferences or political persuasion, so long as they can spin a good tale and keep me thoughtful and/or entertained. I read widely outside of Science Fiction as well, mostly in general History, Military History and Biography. Science Fiction is one of my hobbies, not my life. It would cheer me up immeasurably if authors, editors, publishers, Fen and the rest would stop the war, get back to writing good yarns I can enjoy reading, and quit roiling Force in the Empire.

    • I suggested to them during SP1 and SP2 they’d get farther by talking about books they liked and why and doing posts similar to John Scalzi:

      1. Having a post where they listed their and friends eligible work and open comments to authors to add their eligible works

      2. Have a post for fans to talk about books they enjoyed which were eligible for Hugo’s.

      They rejected those suggestions out of hand. I don’t remember which blogs I made these suggestions on – it was blogs they were commenting on not their blogs. I still believe if they had changed their behave from slates & attack/insult/declare war they might well have seen more of the kind of work they claim to love on the ballot and it could have won Hugos. It’s their tactics we objected to. I know a number of people over the last 3 years gave them similar advice to mine and are suggesting they give it a try for SP4.

  • I am a reader who has been watching this whole thing play out. I will state that I stopped reading the Hugo winners years ago. I am an adult and I really know what is right and what is wrong. I do not need my recreational reading tell me how to think.

    Let me explain how it looked to an outsider. I read the many posts from both sides before the awards. Some were well written, but I found many were just name calling. Since I had met many on both sides of this coin, I was rather appalled by this behavior from adults and especially from an editor. All I could think was you need to grow up.

    I watched the Hugo pre-show and part of the award show. I was appalled by the behavior of the behavior of the professionals towards other professionals in their same field. I was especially appalled that people would no vote rather than have a good author from the “other” side win. One blogger this morning stated he voted that way and was proud of the fact he did not “bother” to read the books.

    All of this was a major turn off for the rank and file reader, which I feel I represent. While you sit there crowing how you showed the puppies, you have lost a number of readers who see this whole thing as a temper tantrum.

    • August 24, 2015 at 7:20 AM // Reply

      A lot of the people who did read all the stories found the Puppy nominations to be terrible and voted them “No award” from a quality standpoint. Many were aggravated that this work, which they considered sub-par, pushed far more worthy nominees off the list. Ursula Vernon had an amazing short story that would have been up for consideration. Andy Weir, author of The Martian, could have been in the running for a Campbell. And so on.

      They saw this as an attack on that portion of SF fandom who regularly votes on Hugos—an attack launched by two movements that between them made up no more than 10% of the overall membership, 20% of the voting membership. So they responded accordingly.

      The moral of the story is, if you’re going to try to catch flies, you better practice up on using honey. By organizing bloc nominations, the Puppies were within the letter of the rules, but they effectively dashed vinegar in every non-Puppy’s eyes instead. That’s not a good way to win friends and influence people.

      • It’s things like getting Andy Weir pushed off the ballot that further disproves anything the SP/RP claimed to achieve — they pushed a very, very popular and very, very mainstream author (white dude, too, I believe) away from any chance of actually securing a nomination and award.

  • Talk about poisoning the well… The whole nerdgate Hugo controversy, which has been dragging on for decades, with snarky comments from both sides of the issue, had one effect, and that was to piss off some of Science Fiction’s best and most popular—and yes, children, it DOES matter how many people like and read your stuff, whatever your literary merits are, or are seen to be—authors, who said to themselves and to each other, “screw this crap”, and simply skipped WorldCon. A lot of us would have liked to see them there. It’s O.K., though, because they will keep writing good stuff, and selling lots of books and ebooks, taking their “unHugos”, i.e., cash money, to the bank…

  • Awards are don’t mean anything. Especially an award that most people have never even heard of. The true test of what is good is when it’s still considered good in 10 or 20 years time. An award is not going to get me an average science fiction reader to buy and read a book I have no interest in reading. I’m sorry but while it may be good for society at large to have gay, lesbian and transgender heroes and heroines I still have no desire to read it as part of my entertainment. Entertaining things are about fun and enjoyment not about things that make me vaguely uncomfortable. Hopefully those type of books will be entertaining for my kids because hopefully it’ll be a better world when it’s time for them to pick their adult reading.

  • I don’t get how anyone can say that this genre’s about just “having fun” when it was LAUNCHED by a significant socio-political commentary…written by a woman.

    Seriously, dumbasses…get yourself in line with the genre’s history.

    • Oh please Sara, get over yourself. I don’t care whichever social justice cause you are shilling for this week. I don’t give a damn if a writer is male, female, hetro, homo or whatever other social PC label you think is currently fashionable. That is not my criteria for reading Science Fiction. I vote with my dollars. I have plenty of female authors in my library. I read a Science Fiction book because it sucks me in, gets me involved with the characters, and it entertains me. If the story has “a significant socio-political commentary” and it is part of a good yarn, fine, but I have a Masters in History with a bunch of post-graduate work in Political Science and I don’t need authors climbing up upon their favorite hobby-horses and preaching to me in their books. The real world is scary enough. I read Science Fiction to get away from it for awhile. Of course, your mileage may vary, but don’t expect the rest of us to climb into the Prius with you for the ride.

      • Sorry for your feelings, dude, but SF has never been about “just fun,” which was exactly my point. If you want to have fun in your SF and do only that, that’s your prerogative. Vote with your dollars. But the history of SF has been that of championing the voice of The Other, from Frankenstein onwards. Hell, even Star Wars (which we can argue about its merit as “science fiction” all week, but is still a benchmark for the “fun spaceship adventure” aspect of sci-fi) is about giving agency to the underdog and the underprivileged. Read whatever you want. No skin off my nose. But defining the genre’s purpose as “fun” and “only fun” shows utter ignorance of its roots.

        • “Fun and only fun”? If you read novels as superifically as you read my post you are definitely not getting your money’ worth. That’s neither what I said nor what I implied. I have been reading Science Fiction since the mid-50’s. I have read a lot of it. If the author is preaching to the point where they lose the reader, they will neither keep their readership nor make any money writing Science Fiction. Yes, they can make a point, and the best ones do, but if they do not also entertain then the number of people they reach will be miniscule.

          • I really don’t think anyone’s arguing that we should be uplifting the message over the story. That seems to be what the Sad Puppies WANT people to be saying, but respecting story has always been the center of the standard.

          • Really good point, Chuck. The Book of Feasts and Seasons, by John C. Wright, was definitely in the category of didactic run amok. And was a hot mess.

        • Sara, You really need to get over yourself. The original stories were written for an audience to read and have fun with. That it had a political commentary was just a side bar, not the main point of the book. All of the politicalness was attributed to those stories long after the authors were dead. You can read all the political/social meaning into every book….even trashy romances, but the bottom line is, if it isn’t enjoyable, the book will not be read. I stopped reading scifi during it’s very serious time in the past. I read for fun. If it’s not fun, then it doesn’t get read. Most people are like that. Except maybe you because, obviously you are a much better person than me.

          • As the daughter of a political activist, I doubt Shelley was ignorant to the undertones of her book. And a great deal of the greatest (and enduring) literature of the time did both–they told a great story and commented on society. This was the case not only with science fiction, but with a great deal of the era’s literature. Dickens without argument of social class? Wilde without conversation about sexuality and hubris? And later: Where would science fiction be without 1984? The War of the Worlds? Herland? A Scanner Darkly? Slaughterhouse-Five? The Dispossessed? Do Androids Dream of Electric Sheep? The Man in the High Castle? In TV: Twilight Zone? Star Trek? Good grief, even Doctor Who is loaded with social commentary.

            The literature that endures, in science fiction and otherwise, tends to be that which achieves both…it’s the literature that not only tells a really great story, but does it in the context of the world from which it comes. And yeah, I may have been cheeky about it, but my point remains. By saying that sci-fi should “just be fun,” it ignores a part of what makes the genre so powerful and a great deal of its potential that writers have been exploiting for centuries.

            And no, I’m not saying that I’m better than anyone else. I’m saying that by saying that sci-fi should emphasize “being fun” over holding that enduring storytelling that speaks to the society that inspired it, you’re losing a specific quality of the story that makes it great. We love the Aeneid not only because it’s a great story, but because it offers us a look into what it meant to be human in Ancient Greece. Dracula criticizes Victorian ideas of sexuality. We love stories of gods and monsters because they say something about us, too. And yeah, good writing can be fun and only fun. But great writing tends to tell a compelling story that holds a conversation with the world it’s from in some way. That’s the stuff that tends to grab imaginations in perpetuity.

          • Linda, Sara is entirely correct in her assessment that the history and prehistory of science fiction is filled with political works. H. G. Wells’s Time Machine and War of the Worlds, for example, are explicitly political and address issues of class and colonialism. The works of Jules Verne are part of a larger republican (using the word as related to the French republic, not the American political party) project to spread interest and awareness of current science among the wider, non-elite class.

            You can ignore the political content of these works and read them just for fun if that’s what you enjoy, and that’s perfectly fine. But at least acknowledge that the politics exist, and maybe drop the snide, passive-aggressive tone towards people who read differently than you.

  • Oh, and Chuck, do us a favor, if you will…next year, when nominating season comes around, REMIND US WITH BIG LETTERS to go get ourselves signed up with SFWA to have the privilege to add our voices to the nominations. I haven’t really felt “worthy” to be in SFWA, but I would join for the chance to give a boost to the artists I feel are the best in the genre.

  • I grew up a Reader and not a Fan because that next step of activity didn’t fit me. My loss in some ways. I am now a Dipper, wandering by on the recommendation of a friend or family member, enjoying the swim and then leaving the pool and wandering off again. Add whatever size grain of salt you want to my comment.

    “We’re just trying to return SFF to a more fun, less political time.” A time that never existed.

    “We’re just trying to be apolitical.” Sure, with a politically motivated slate. Wait, what?

    Three authors that I grew up on were Heinlein, Ellison and Le Guin, they were political as all get out in their work.

    One small comment on one small part of the story. I will add that I like that on a whole the comments here were civil, well written and acknowledged errors they made in fact or conclusion. I also enjoyed the heart felt, reasoned posts I disagreed with in part or whole. The posts that bothered me were like post I see all over the digital world, short, single and small minded. And sad but not in a puppy way.

  • Mr. W.:I’m late to the party but happy to be here. I was directed to this blog by a Facebook share, and am delighted by this post. The line that convinced me to check out your books? “Next year, I hear the Puppies slate will be decided by Donald Trump’s skull merkin, worked like a puppet by the ghost of a drunk, racist Ayn Rand.” Thank you for that.

  • Thank you, Chuck Wendig, for writing this post and putting a big smile on my face. There is nothing more I can add, since you have said everything already, far more eloquently than I could’ve done.

    *gives you virtual, completely-platonic hug*

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