Saturday, 20 June 2015

Hugo Reflections: Part 6 - 2003 to 2014

After going Conjose we started going to other SF conventions, and have now been to nine more; mostly those that are in or near London.  You can read about three of them by clicking this link.

Again the link for the Hugo Wikipedia page is here.
2003 to 2012

In this decade have I well and truly passed the peak of reading Hugo award winners and nominees.  In fact it looks like I've fallen off the map.  The only Hugo award winner that I read was Rainbows End by Vernor Vinge.  I really like his work, and I bought the hardback as soon as I saw it on the shelf at Forbidden Planet.

Of the nominees I've read nine of the forty works.  Old Man's War by John Scalzi, Blindsight by Peter Watts, The Last Colony by by John Scalzi, Halting State by Charles Stross, Cryoburn by Lois McMaster Bujold.  For the record Scalzi, Stross and Watts were all new to me authors that I discovered either by word of mouth or through the internet during this period.

I should add that in general I'm reading Hugo award winners and nominees years after their original publication date.  Also, I have on my to be read pile one other Hugo nominee novel Mira Grant's (a pseudonym of Seanan McGuire) Feed, which I picked up recently to try.
2013 & 2014

So now we enter the beginning of the seventh decade of the Hugos, and soon my fifth decade as a reader of science fiction.  This may well make me a boring old fogie or not, depending on how one sees such things (get off my lawn!)  At the end of 2012 I had a change of career, in that I decided to take a sabbatical from working in mental health care.  I started writing again, after more than a twenty year break by restarting work on a novel I began in 1988.

In this time I've read both Hugo award winners (Redshirts & Ancillary Justice), and two of the eight nominees: Captain Vorpatril's Alliance by Lois McMaster Bujold, and Warbound by Larry Correia.  If my writing career takes off I imagine that the number of Hugo winners and nominees will rise.  It's kind of inevitable really as one wants to keep abreast of what people are reading.

I've also read two of this years nominees, which as far as I'm concerned puts me ahead of the curve.


Tomorrow I will sum up my thought about the Hugos and the debate that has been causing a storm across the internet.  But the first post I started this series with had a list of a few authors whose work I'd read, but whom had not been nominated at the time for a Hugo or won the award.  So I thought I'd like to end with a few random books by authors I love that I would have liked to have seen in the running for the Hugo (year of publication, so they would be in the following years award).

1985 Wizard of the Pigeons by Megan Lindholm aka Robin Hobb.
1989 A Talent for War by Jack McDevitt.
1990 The Ring of Charon by Roger MacBride-Allen.
1990 Good Omens by Neil Gaiman & Terry Pratchett.
1990 Angel Station by Walter Jon Williams.
1991 Hardwired by Walter Jon Williams.
1992 Grunts! by Mary Gentle.
1994 The Engines of God by Jack McDevitt.
1996 Excession by Iain M. Banks.
2000 Ash: A Secret History by Mary Gentle.
2000 Storm Front by Jim Butcher.
2002 The Praxis by Walter Jon Williams.
2002 Altered Carbon by Richard Morgan.
2003 Spin State by Chris Moriarty.
2004 Century Rain by Alistair Reynolds.
2010 Truth of Valor by Tanya Huff.
2011 Children of the Sky by Vernor Vinge.
2012 Silence by Michelle Sagara.
2013 The Coldest Girl in Cold Town by Holly Black.
2014 Maplecroft by Cherie Priest.

As I compiled this list what I found it harder for me to add books that I've read the closer I got to the current date (big gap between 2004 and 2010 for example).

I think this is indicates that I'm always reading behind the curve, except for those few authors I will buy in hardback as soon as something appears from them.  Reflecting back for a moment, when I started to read I could on occasion manage three books a day.  My average, I guess, was more like a book a day.  But nowadays  I'm only reading a book a week, at most, sometimes less.  This sort of change in volume means there's no way I can keep up with all the new novels coming out in a year.

So it's no wonder I'm behind the curve, which probably makes me a boring old fogie.  Anyway, see you tomorrow for my summary.

Part seven link.

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