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Countdown to Liftoff

Only ten more days remain until the close of nominations for the 2016 Hugo Awards, to be presented in Kansas City at MidAmericon II.

Are you a member of MidAmericon? Were you a member of Sasquan, last year's worldcon in Spokane? Are you a member of the 2017 worldcon, to be held in Helsinki, Finland? If so, you're eligible to nominate the books and stories and artists you loved best in 2015.

So, please... NOMINATE!

You can do it here: http://midamericon2.org/the-hugo-awards/hugo-nominations/

No fan of good will, no one who truly loves SF and fantasy and worldcon and fandom, wants a repeat of what happened to the Hugo Awards last year. I am not going to rehash that sorry mess; there's no point to it, everything that needed to be said has been said, and a lot more besides. I would rather look to the future. Let's restore the silver rocket to its former glory (and, by doing so, make a second round of Alfie Awards unnecessary) as a true measure of the year's best work in imaginative literature.

I made my objections to the Puppy slates clear last year. This time around, the Sad Puppies at least changed from a slate to a recommendation list, to which I have no objections. I've looked at their list. There's some great work on it. There's some bad work on it, writers and books that I don't think belong anywhere near a Hugo. And there's a lot of books and stories that I haven't gotten around to reading yet. The same could be said for most any list, however. There's stuff on the Nebula shortlist I don't like as well, and a lot of books on the LOCUS list that I have not read yet. (I will get to some of them. Too many books, too little time). Sad Puppies 4 played fair, in my estimation, and for that I commend them.

((The Rabid Puppies produced another slate. They have entirely different aims. And no, we will not discuss them here)).

And how about my own recommendations?

I've made a few. I did not issue them all at once, in a single list, but rather category by category over the past five months. I did not get to every category, and even with those I did, my recommendations are by no means exhaustive.

My intent, whenever I make a recommendation, is NOT to say, "Vote for this," but rather, "Here's something I really liked, take a look it it, you may find it deserving as well."

Some of the other recommended reading lists are just lists of titles and names. Fine and good, I suppose, but I prefer to do a little more: to talk about the categories, the books, the authors, the artists and editors, and where I can to discuss WHY I think they deserve a nomination.

My posts are still up. For those who want to read them, here are links:

Short Fiction:

Professional Editor, Long Form:

Professional Editor, Short Form:

Professional Artist:

Graphic Story:

Related Work:

Dramatic Presentation, Short Form:

Dramatic Presentation, Long Form:


If any of you go back and read those -- and I hope you will -- read the comments too. There are plenty of other recommendations to be found there, recommendations from my readers and friends. I am only one (overworked) guy, I can't get to everything, it's great to hear from other precincts. Especially when they tell you why they liked whatever it is they liked...

I did mean to get to some of the other categories. Alas, I failed. I am just not knowledgeable enough to make recommendations in some areas.

I did overlook some good choices even in the categories I covered. Naomi Novik's UPROOTED is her best work to date, a very strong fantasy (though I had problems with the ending) and probably worth a nomination in Novel. I forgot about EX MACHINA when talking about Long Form Drama, but it's a gripping and well done film, worthy of consideration. I recommended OUTLANDER for Short Form Drama, but it should be noted that the first season was telecast in two eight-episode arcs, and only the second eight are eligible, as the first eight were broadcast in 2014. I think JONATHAN STRANGE AND MR. NORRELL should be nominated in Long Form as a whole, rather than in Short Form, by episode, but others disagree.

Anyway... quibbles and additions aside... read, watch, consider... and please...



Mar. 22nd, 2016 02:25 am (UTC)
Someone who was a member of Sasquan but hasn't requested a PIN from MidAmeriCon has missed their chance to nominate, correct? The website says "Hugo PINs are being emailed out between January 27 – February 5, 2016 to people who elected for electronic publications and are members of the eligible Worldcons. PINs from last year’s Sasquan have been invalidated and will not work with this process," so I'm guessing February 5 was the deadline for getting involved.
Mar. 22nd, 2016 05:40 am (UTC)
Not necessarily. Ours didn't show up either, but we sent mail saying "HEY!" and they sent us our PINs. Try it.
Mar. 24th, 2016 06:15 am (UTC)
Thank you to you and everyone else who replied! I really thought I'd missed my chance by failing to contact them by the deadline, but it's all sorted now. Nominations ahoy!
Mar. 22nd, 2016 10:17 am (UTC)
If you are a member of Sasquan, you are eligible to nominate. You must be an eligible member (of last years, this years or next years Worldcon) by the end of January, but apart from that I am unaware of anything in the rules about getting involved before a set date. (Other than the nomination deadline itself, of course.)

The dates you refer to is just information about when to expect your PIN, and not a deadline. MACII had some problems mailing out the PINs and you are not alone in not recieving yours in the week they planned to send them.

So if you want to nominate and haven't recieved your pin, I suggest you send an email to the Hugo administrators at MidAmericon II with the name and email you signed up with and ask them to resend your PIN. You should be able to find an email adress on the MACII website.
Ziv Wities
Mar. 22nd, 2016 11:15 am (UTC)
They might have missed you sendfing out PINS, but there's an excellent chance you can still get your PIN and nominate. Write to hugopin@midamericon2.org and ask.
Mar. 22nd, 2016 04:00 pm (UTC)
There were a lot of problems with PINs this time around, and I didn't wind up with a working PIN until February 25. I'm sure if you contacted them and said you still haven't received a PIN they'd get it straightened out. The deadline for actual nominations is March 31. You still have a week. I'd just recommend asking now and not next week.
Mar. 22nd, 2016 05:34 pm (UTC)
Probably not. They missed a lot of people in the PIN mailing. Email hugopin@midamericon2.org to get it. Please don't wait until the 31st!
Mar. 22nd, 2016 02:34 am (UTC)
One of my favorite new authors is on the Rabid Slate, I just hope that people don't penalize him for being on a slate he didn't ask to be a part of.
Mar. 22nd, 2016 02:46 am (UTC)
If you're still looking for last-minute Graphic Story reads, particularly those that are a little outside the mainstream, I made a post this last week with some recommendations. (My main Job is comics, so I can't help but try and share my favorite SFF titles with friends who're more on the prose side of things.)

Regardless, thanks for taking the time to assemble all of this!
Mar. 22nd, 2016 03:03 am (UTC)
re: Hugos
Thanks for the input. I brought my attending membership for Helsinki too late to be involved this year in the nominating, but am reading a new book each month and keeping an eye on the short stories this year so in 2017 I will be prepared.
Mar. 22nd, 2016 03:06 am (UTC)
Mother's Mercy
I cannot in good conscience nominate "Mother's Mercy".

...can we nominate the "Dance of Dragons" animated featurette in some "special features" category?

Edited at 2016-03-22 03:06 am (UTC)
Mar. 22nd, 2016 04:10 am (UTC)
RE: Mother's Mercy
That just came out. It would be eligible next year.

"Mother's Mercy" was one episide. We had nine more. But nominate what you like.
Mar. 22nd, 2016 12:47 pm (UTC)
RE: Mother's Mercy
Mar. 22nd, 2016 03:15 am (UTC)
This year, we agree.
Yeah, as someone who was a loud voice in favour of the No Award response last year, I'm willing to call what the Sads released this year a list, and I'm okay with it. This is, as far as I can tell, fine.

But given the Rabids, and given that we still have an unpatched exploit, I argue that E Pluribus Hugo is still very much needed, regardless of what happens this year. Known and unpatched exploits will be exploited, it's only a question of how often. So I really hope that this year's business meeting approves EPH in second reading.

At the moment, I'm not planning on being there - we're saving up for Finland. And I'm nervous about that. But, well, it is what it is.
Mar. 22nd, 2016 03:08 pm (UTC)
Dunk and Egg
Have the delightful little Tales of Dunk and Egg, one of Westeros' finest Knights with one of Westeros' finest Kings, ever won an award? Read all three last year and by the Old Gods and the New they were great. Look forward to reading The She-Wolves when it comes out. Of course, I'm looking forward to any ASOIAF work that comes out, as I consider this perhaps the best constructed fantasy world (though I still think Tolkien has the edge on language). Best of luck with your writing.
Frank Probst
Mar. 22nd, 2016 04:22 pm (UTC)
I'd really recommend watching the first two episodes of Daredevil. Episode 2 is on the Sad Puppies list, and I think that one really deserves a nom.
Mar. 23rd, 2016 03:46 pm (UTC)
Red Rising Trilogy...
If and when you get to reading Pierce Brown's "Red Rising Trilogy", I for one would enjoy seeing what you thought of it. I believe "Golden Son" the second book is a candidate for a Hugo nomination and he could be up for a Campbell as well. Fun stories, good characters, not very high brow though. Also, I would like to reiterate how under rated the artist Jon Foster is, certainly as good or better then anyone nominated of late. Be Well and Long Live GRRM!
Mar. 23rd, 2016 06:47 pm (UTC)
Faceless men
If a faceless man takes a form of a woman would he take her genitalias too?
Mar. 24th, 2016 07:43 am (UTC)
Well I couldn't vote
But had I been able to afford membership I would have voted for Jo Walton's Just City series. Easily the most amazing and thoughtful work of speculative fiction I have ever read.
Naomi Novik's Uprooted is pretty cool as well.
Mar. 26th, 2016 11:34 pm (UTC)
I'm glad to see the Sad Puppies have mellowed out and learned from last year, and applied it in what seems to be a positive way. It's so easy for what tend to be anonymous online factions to become more and more extreme and nasty. The other puppies are a good example.

Can't nominate anything myself, but this is a a handy post for anyone who can -or simply those interested in enjoying material they might not have gotten around to or heard of. Always appreciate your thoughtfulness!


George R.R. Martin
George R. R. Martin

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