I know I’m coming late to the party, but while reading this post by Mike Glyer from File 770 I discovered that blogs, such as this one, aren’t actually eligible for a Hugo because, to quote Andrew Trembley, “under the current [Hugo] rule, a blog that doesn’t adopt a periodical format isn’t eligible…”
Trembley then follows this up by saying:
But what does “periodical format” really mean in the context of web-only (not PDF) digital publishing?
In some ways it means the same thing it does in old-school paper fanzines. There’s some sort of (often lax) editorial control, (often lax) planning and (often lax) packaging on an (often irregular) schedule.
A lot of blogs don’t live up to that standard. Sure, they’ve got the irregular schedule that’s fannishly traditional, but they’re just random thoughts thrown out willy-nilly. No editing, no planning, no packaging.
No editing! No planning! No packaging! How dare he! I mean, yes most of what I write here is pulled straight from my anal orifice, including commentary on award ballots where I have fuck all to say and yet spend 2,000 words saying it. And yes, the blog only has a distant relationship to the sort of syntax and grammar that Strunk and White would find acceptable. It’s also true that when it came to packaging I picked the Graphene Theme because it has a swirly thing that looked a bit like a wormhole.
But still – fuck you old people fandom. Fuck you and your obsolete fanzines that no-one under the age of 60* bothers to write or read. OK… yes… we all fell in love with Chris Garcia when he went mental after winning his Hugo award for Best Fanzine.
But as far as I’m concerned this moment of unabashed love for the fanzine is as good a swansong as any. The community should accept that they’ve had it great for the last fifty, sixty (whatever) years and move over for the true home of all things fannish – the blogosphere. And if they want to continue their nostalgia trip remembering those days when fanzine writers and publishers were white Gods amongst while men,** well, there’s always Corflu .
Of course I’m not idiotic enough to think that at the next Worldcon Business Meeting someone will try and replace Best Fanzine with Best Blog. Or Tumblr. Or Twitter Feed. Or Facebook status. The fanzine is an institution and it’s going to take the release of some sort of super virus aimed at killing anyone whose been within 50 meters of a mimeograph before change occurs.
And the hilarity of it all is that by the time any actual change is made the blog will no longer be at the cutting edge of fandom discussion and discourse. Shit, even now the blog is losing its luster as most people turn to Twitter to scream and shout over the latest controversy. Me included.
* Except for those who are. Like Chris Garcia.
** Uncalled for?
*** Yes, I could be involved in making the Hugo rules if I wanted to be. I mean it is a democracy. But I simply don’t have the strength or the wherewithal to sit through a Business Meeting or for that matter travel the world following Worldcons so I can be sure my voice is heard. So yeah I’m part of the problem. But you’d think common sense would prevail… yeah?