At about 5:30 this morning Melbourne, while I slumbered innocently, the Hugo Award nominations for 2014 were announced. The full list is here. I could sleep because, as Jonathan Strahan pointed out on an episode of Coode Street a few weeks back, Hugo nominees are made aware of their nomination (so they can confirm and approve) a week before. So I’ve been yaaaaaying and giggling for a good seven days. The only thing that has tempered my excitement is the fact that Joshi, Sophie and Jules have all been sick. And I’m sure I’m next on the list.
Anywho, as I said on Facebook I’m extremely proud about the nomination. Well, of course I am. Since I became aware of fandom and the Hugos more than twenty years ago I’ve wanted to be on the ballot. In those dreams I saw myself winning Best Novel for a multi-book series about the Victorian public service. And magic. The fact that I’ve come to be nominated with my BFF Kirstyn for a project that we both dearly love puts those wild, impossible fantasies to shame. (Though I’m still convinced that stories about an enchanted Victorian public service are a winner!)
So yeah. I know have a Hugo PIN. I’ll be wearing the shit out that little rocket. Even if my co-workers do think it looks like a penis.
As for the rest of the ballot. Some thoughts:
- The Best Fan Writer category shines a bright piercing light on the rest of the ballot. After so many years of complaining and grizzling about the lack of representation of women and online fan writers, the day has finally arrived. Four women on the ballot and all five are online writers. I personally nominated Foz and Abigail, but also love Liz and Kameron’s work. I’m not as aware of Oshiro’s output, but I hear good things. It’s a shame that only one person can win this category. Unless they all tie! Yes! Let’s engineer that!
- Talking about engineering results, while I don’t believe that Correia or Day cheated the system by getting their dead granny to nominate them, they certainly engineered their fanbase to by whipping up their support in a pre Hugo frenzy. But as Nick Mamatas foreshadowed, what’s good for the goose is good for the gander. Correia and Day are not the only writers who’ve spent months mobilising their fanbase to nominate them. And they won’t be the last.
- I am genuinely shocked that Neil Gaiman did not appear on the Best Novel ballot. I thought he was a monty to feature and win. Could this be a residual effect from the Jonathan Ross debacle?
- Of the best novel category – I’m with those who think it’s ridiculous to have The Wheel of Time on the ballot. Yes, I know it’s within the rules. But come on! If the rules can be perverted in this way, where a category has four apples compared to one massive pear, then there’s something fundamentally broken with those rules. That said, I still think that Ancillary Justice will win the Hugo. Or maybe that’s just hope on my part – because it’s not the most inspiring Best Novel ballot.
- On Fancast, lovely to see that Australian rule! Coode Street and Galactic Suburbia continue to produce top quality work. Coode Street’s recent interviews have been marvelous (the one with Nnedi is a highlight) and the recent Galactic Suburbia podcast on Veronica Mars is an example of the passion and love those guys bring to their podcast. Also very happy to see Verity and the Skiffy and Fanty show make an appearance on the ballot. I was on an episode of S/F and I can say that Shaun, Jen and Julia are a blast to podcast with. I’ve never heard of Tea and Jeopardy (more shame me) but I shall check it out.
- Best Fanzine is also an example of Hugo’s finally reflecting the transition from old skool fanzines to the online variety. The Book Smugglers, A Dribble of Ink and Pornokitsch are must read sites.
- If I don’t read Larry Correia’s Best Novel nomination it’s not because of what I think of his online presence. It’s because it’s the third book in a series.
- I do intend to read Day’s novelette (if it’s in the Hugo pack). Assuming I read any of the short fiction categories. It will depend on time.
- On short fiction, congrats to Cat Valente who is simply brilliant. And to Andy Duncan and Ellen Klages who also very much deserve their nom.
- I’ll be cheering on Jonathan Strahan for best editor short form. The same goes for Sofia Samatar who I’m so happy to see get a John W Campbell nom. (I should read Max Gladstone though. And I’ll be reading Wesley Chu in the next couple of months).
- Oh and Strange Horizons for best Semi-Prozine. Coz it’s an indispensable resource.
- Also, Fiona Staples. YAY!
I’ve run out of puff. It’s only 9:30 in the morning and I have to dress the kids and wipe my daughter’s snotty nose (where does that stuff come from?). But I am so very happy. THANK YOU to everyone who nominated Kirstyn and I.