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Author Topic: Hugo Awards 2015 Controversy & Sad Puppies  (Read 13860 times)

Offline JMack

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Re: Hugo Awards 2015 Controversy & Sad Puppies
« Reply #15 on: April 08, 2015, 06:01:33 PM »
Who cares about the Hugo...

The casual fan, I think. Which has been me until F-F.
Every once in a while, I'd pull up the Hugo's and say: "What have I missed? Oh, I guess I should read that."

Now I pay more attention to certain sites, but Huos have definitely been in my shopping behavior.

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Offline Raptori

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Re: Hugo Awards 2015 Controversy & Sad Puppies
« Reply #16 on: April 08, 2015, 06:13:08 PM »
Who cares about the Hugo...

The casual fan, I think. Which has been me until F-F.
Every once in a while, I'd pull up the Hugo's and say: "What have I missed? Oh, I guess I should read that."

Now I pay more attention to certain sites, but Huos have definitely been in my shopping behavior.
Yeah I'm the same, haven't paid attention to them for a while now. I actually rarely read reviews on sites like F-F, instead I read through some 5* and 1* reviews on GR to get a feel for whether or not I'll like something. It's worked a lot better than just following what's popular/wins awards.  :)
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Offline Idlewilder

Re: Hugo Awards 2015 Controversy & Sad Puppies
« Reply #17 on: April 08, 2015, 06:14:01 PM »
I've always wondered how much of a difference there is in, let's call it, 'The Importance of the Hugo' between the US and, say the UK. I've never felt in any way attached to the Hugo award and have always found it very US-centric, despite being hosted by Worldcon - which like 80% of the time takes place in the US anyway. There's so many people in the community - mainly I see this on Twitter - who seem to hold the Hugo up as a benchmark for the genre, and yet I really don't think non-Americans generally care as much. (Of course this isn't true for everyone - I know Elfy attends Worldcon fairly regularly, for instance, and votes in the Hugos every year)

Thoughts?
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Offline ScarletBea

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Re: Hugo Awards 2015 Controversy & Sad Puppies
« Reply #18 on: April 08, 2015, 06:30:42 PM »
I have to admit not caring about awards...
In fact, if a book wins something, I might not consider it :-\
So I'd rather not know.
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Offline Eclipse

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Re: Hugo Awards 2015 Controversy & Sad Puppies
« Reply #19 on: April 08, 2015, 06:32:50 PM »
I have to admit not caring about awards...
In fact, if a book wins something, I might not consider it :-\
So I'd rather not know.

That's like the Oscars for me for films haha
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Offline Overlord

Re: Hugo Awards 2015 Controversy & Sad Puppies
« Reply #20 on: April 08, 2015, 08:14:18 PM »
I just ignore them these days. The problem with them is that like many awards they aren't really what fans or the industry think is the best book, but instead invitations by certain people to other certain people to enter into their fold or a pat on the back between friends.

The problem is that you can only do this for so long before a pattern is noticed... when that happens people panic and overcompensate by choosing the opposite group of people to those they'd previously been letting in and it becomes even more blatant that 'choice' selection based on the people / subjects rather than the actual books is actually taking place.

At this point it becomes almost impossible to return to any means of normality. How can you be more well-rounded when at your core you are not well-rounded at all without being false?
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Offline xiagan

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Re: Hugo Awards 2015 Controversy & Sad Puppies
« Reply #21 on: April 08, 2015, 08:53:01 PM »
In conclusion, we do need our own awards. ;)

(See multiple topics to that theme from the last three years.)
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Offline Elfy

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Re: Hugo Awards 2015 Controversy & Sad Puppies
« Reply #22 on: April 09, 2015, 01:32:31 AM »
Worldcon is seen as a bit of a US thing, mainly because it originated there and it's held there more often than anywhere else. They are trying to change that, though. It was held in Melbourne, Australia for the 4th time in 2010 and last year it was in London, which actually had the biggest turnout and the largest number of voters for the Hugo. The matter of voting for the Hugo has always been problematic because it's a populist award. It's been 'gamed' on a number of occasions. Have a look at the results of 1955 and tell me what the common denominator in award winners is there. If you look at the Best Novel nominations for this year it's not a whole lot different. We've got two books by popular authors, who may be of questionable quality, but they sell well, and if the casual genre reader sees Hugo nomination on the front cover of one of those books they may be minded to find out more about it and start to read more widely within the genre, they may even become Hugo voters, and as they've said on a number of occasions they're all about inclusion and getting rid of exclusivity, I think that to a certain extent influenced the win by Harry Potter and the Goblet of Fire in 2001. The other books are one that gained popularity as an ebook and was then traditionally published by 47North (Amazon's trad publishing imprint), the author's work may fit in with Sad Puppies slate, but he doesn't personally subscribe to anything they advocate, and he wasn't asked to be part of their movement or advised that they were campaigning on his behalf (one half of the duo that began the movement Larry Correia did actually get Monster Hunter: Nemesis on the list, but declined the nomination). Then we've got Katherine Addison's Goblin Emperor and Ann Leckie's follow up to Ancillary Justice: Ancillary Sword, which is about as far from Sad Puppies as anything could get.
The Hugo is largely a science fiction award, fantasy's only started to make recent raids on it, due to the rise of the genre's popularity. I'd actually prefer that it did things in the same way as the Nebula and had a fantasy award and a science fiction award. The Sad Puppies thing may have significantly influenced categories like Novella, Novelette and Short Story, witness John C. Wright's multiple nominations. Vox Day somehow managed to get a nomination in Best Editor, but he runs his own campaign called Rabid Puppies. The best way to react to this and to do something about it is to register to vote and put your vote for what you genuinely want to see win. It's $40 US for a supporting membership. That gets you an electronic packet with most of the nominated works (I suspect Kloos book may not be in it), not just the novels, but the short work also, and there 3 categories worth of those. I know that Lejays17 has been turned onto a few authors that she wouldn't have otherwise read if not for the Hugo voting process (three of those are: Jo Walton, Connie Willis and Lois McMaster Bujold). It's a flawed system, that is true, but if you want to change it and you want to keep this award, which has been in place since the early '50's and whose past winners include some of the biggest most revered names in the genre, then get involved, buy a supporting membership if you can afford it, go to Worldcon if you can (there's a lot more there than just the Hugos, and you have a far greater chance of interacting with some of your favourite authors than you do at a bookstore signing or other appearance), look at the nominated works, read them, make your own decisions. Finally if you really want to do some research into who is on the committee that looks after the Hugo and Worldcon, send them an email, a tweet, leave a message on their live journal or Facebook pages voicing your concerns.
There's just a lot of disinformation out there and it saddens me that it is affecting the perception of the award the way that it is. Sad Puppies was in operation last year, and given the book that actually won Best Novel was Ancillary Justice, a debut science fiction novel by a woman that dealt with binary gender, I think they kind of failed miserably. It's highly likely that Ancillary Sword could take the award out this year.
A number of the authors that have been linked to Sad Puppies were not asked and they did not know that the movement was campaigning on their behalf, so its rather unfair to punish those people for actions that they did not take. I'd rather the work be judged on it's merits. Is this a good or a bad book? And if so, why? Unless the author is openly advocating a political position which the reader finds objectionable then what they do outside of the writing shouldn't really come into it. There are of course exceptions, the names Orson Scott Card, Marion Zimmer Bradley, Vox Day, John C. Wright and L. Ron Hubbard immediately spring to mind.



Offline JMack

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Re: Hugo Awards 2015 Controversy & Sad Puppies
« Reply #23 on: April 09, 2015, 01:54:47 AM »
Quote
The best way to react to this and to do something about it is to register to vote and put your vote for what you genuinely want to see win.

Just registered.
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Offline cupiscent

Re: Hugo Awards 2015 Controversy & Sad Puppies
« Reply #24 on: April 09, 2015, 02:10:13 AM »
I'm deeply disappointed by what the various Puppy slates have done with the nomination process. I enjoy award shortlists (if not necessarily paying attention to who wins) as an opportunity to see what people are excited about that I might not have heard of. But with the dominance of the set slates, I cannot trust that these nominations are actually buoyed by the excitement of my fellow fans rather than politicking or simply being one of the group. And that makes me sad.

The immense difference between Scalzi, Stross and indeed any other individual author saying, "Hey, here's what I've written that is eligible for awards this year" (which is a useful resource for those of us who haven't time to look up the rules of the award and the publishing dates of all our favourite things) and a cabal of people saying, "Here is a list of precisely the number of nominations you are allowed to nominate in each category" should be manifestly obvious. The Puppy slates are not lists of suggested reading for your consideration, they are carefully selected party tickets. Indeed, when several authors who were originally included asked to be removed, replacements were found. Why weren't those works on the list in the first place, if they're worthy? Because this isn't about drawing attention to worthy works, it's about ensuring "our guys" get on the ballot. Which isn't about quality, isn't about excitement, isn't about fantasy and sci-fi at all. And that makes me double-sad.

And if this makes you sad - or, hell, excited, or just interested in an award you've never thought that much about before - then I agree with the advice given: register to vote and have a say. (To help ensure your vote says exactly what you want it to say, you might be interested in this great breakdown of what No Award means and does.)

And because I haven't seen it here yet: a breakdown of which nominees came from which Puppy slates, and which came from neither.
« Last Edit: April 09, 2015, 02:15:45 AM by cupiscent »

Offline JMack

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Re: Hugo Awards 2015 Controversy & Sad Puppies
« Reply #25 on: April 09, 2015, 02:14:01 AM »
@cupiscent, the bottom link isn't working?
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Offline Raptori

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Re: Hugo Awards 2015 Controversy & Sad Puppies
« Reply #26 on: April 09, 2015, 02:15:39 AM »
I wish the world was flat like the old days, then I could travel just by folding a map.

Offline cupiscent

Re: Hugo Awards 2015 Controversy & Sad Puppies
« Reply #27 on: April 09, 2015, 02:16:06 AM »
@cupiscent, the bottom link isn't working?

Sorry, looks like I mucked up all my link coding, is hopefully fixed now!

Offline Elfy

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Re: Hugo Awards 2015 Controversy & Sad Puppies
« Reply #28 on: April 09, 2015, 02:36:40 AM »
Thanks for that @cupiscent. Unfortunately there are some genuinely decent and talented people appearing on both the Sad and Rabid Puppies list. I know George Martin would be horrified to realise that he's associated with Rabid Puppies, in any way, shape or form, because the nominated episode of Game of Thrones appears on it. He's already written a blog post about how the whole thing saddens him. Likewise names like Jennifer Brozek and Sheila Gilbert.
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Offline DrNefario

Re: Hugo Awards 2015 Controversy & Sad Puppies
« Reply #29 on: April 09, 2015, 01:08:20 PM »
I really liked the Marko Kloos books - I read them both through the Kindle Lending Library earlier this year. I didn't think the second one was as good as the first one, so it missed out on my nomination for best novel, but I did back Kloos for the Campbell.

The fact that they have backed some decent works doesn't really excuse the way they've gone about it, and might actually end up doing more harm than good to their favoured few.