Thursday, 27 August 2015

Hugos Where?

And who says that Americans don't do irony?

Reflecting on the 2015 Hugo Awards over the course of the last week I see that my conclusion that ninety percent of what I'll read will never win a Hugo award remains true (that's meant to be a joke or at least like a joke, if not very funny).  While I sympathize with the Anti-Puppies slate, I do think such things are a very blunt tool, which may produce the desired results, but result in unintended consequences.  As an aside, what appears to be a serious analysis of the numbers can be found here.  My view remains pretty much the same, as I prefer de-escalation of conflicts rather than escalation.  Arguably research and history supports the former rather than the latter.

From my perspective I was disappointed that the Edge of Tomorrow aka Live. Die. Repeat didn't win the Hugo for best film.  I thought it was by far the best SF movie of the year, though I would acknowledge in my heart that Captain America: The Winter Soldier was more likely to win.  I was surprised to see Guardians of the Galaxy win, given it was a Sad Puppy slate nominee.  What this means is anyone's guess.  Mine would be that no one who is heavily invested in the Worldcon and the Hugos has any real interest in films, or people figure that the studios don't care if a film wins the Hugo.  Take your pick.

I was saddened to see my friend Ken Burnside's work The Hot Equations: Thermodynamics and Military SF getting burnt by the Anti-Puppy slate.  Likewise the editors going down too, but recognize that YMMV, and probably does where this is concerned.

However, Orphan Black: By Means Which Have Never Yet Been Tried, winning a Hugo was nice.  I thought the series should have won a Hugo last year, so the unintended consequences of the Sad Puppies resulting in an award for this show was a welcome outcome.

The only other thing I have to say is that as a British person I find some of the things I'm reading in the aftermath rather puzzling.  For instance, the stuff being said about Terry Pratchett that only make sense if you think that the world revolves around America, which for me shows how much the Worldcon is at heart an American institution rather than something representing World SF.

The best thing I've read about what came out of this whole debacle is George R. R. Martin's Hugo Losers party.  Rock on George.  Him and Eric Flint, have impressed me throughout by just being plain professional.


  1. The impression I got was that the long- and short-form dramatic presentations were considered to be (a) not done by Puppy sympathisers and (b) of at least moderate quality in themselves, so quite a few people decided to exclude them from the general downvoting of Puppy candidates. I dare say it's not fully consistent.

    I do think it's a shame Andy Weir didn't get in with The Martian; he might well not have made it on Novel, but he could have been a solid contender for the Campbell.