Sat
Apr 19 2014 3:30pm

Announcing the 2014 Hugo Award Nominees

2014 Hugo Award nomineesThe nominees for the 2014 Hugo Awards have been announced and we are feeling galaxies of pride at the Tor.com and Tor Books nominees on the list.

Congratulations to all the 2014 nominees! Check out the full list below, including the Retro 1939 Hugo Award nominees announced this evening.

The shortlist announcement was streamed live from the UK to the web and conventions in the United States. The presentation can be watched again here: www.ustream.tv/hugo-awards. The committee’s thanks go out to Satellite 4, the British National Science Fiction Convention (Eastercon), Norwescon 37 and Minicon 49 for their support in making this unique event possible.

1923 valid nominating ballots were received and counted from the members of LoneStarCon 3, Loncon 3 and Sasquan. (1889 Electronic and 34 Paper.)

 

2014 Hugo Award nominees

BEST NOVEL (1595 ballots)

  • Ancillary Justice by Ann Leckie (Orbit)
  • Neptune’s Brood by Charles Stross (Ace / Orbit)
  • Parasite by Mira Grant (Orbit)
  • Warbound, Book III of the Grimnoir Chronicles by Larry Correia (Baen Books)
  • The Wheel of Time by Robert Jordan and Brandon Sanderson (Tor Books)

BEST NOVELLA (847 ballots)

BEST NOVELETTE (728 ballots)

  • “Opera Vita Aeterna” by Vox Day (The Last Witchking, Marcher Lord Hinterlands)
  • “The Exchange Officers” by Brad Torgersen (Analog, Jan-Feb 2013)
  • “The Lady Astronaut of Mars” by Mary Robinette Kowal (Tor.com, 09-2013)
  • “The Truth of Fact, the Truth of Feeling” by Ted Chiang (Subterranean Press Magazine, Fall 2013)
  • “The Waiting Stars” by Aliette de Bodard (The Other Half of the Sky, Candlemark & Gleam)

BEST SHORT STORY (865 ballots)

Note: category has 4 nominees due to a 5% requirement under Section 3.8.5 of the WSFS constitution.

BEST RELATED WORK (752 ballots)

  • Queers Dig Time Lords: A Celebration of Doctor Who by the LGBTQ Fans Who Love It Edited by Sigrid Ellis & Michael Damien Thomas (Mad Norwegian Press)
  • Speculative Fiction 2012: The Best Online Reviews, Essays and Commentary by Justin Landon & Jared Shurin (Jurassic London)
  • We Have Always Fought: Challenging the Women, Cattle and Slaves Narrative by Kameron Hurley (A Dribble of Ink)
  • Wonderbook: The Illustrated Guide to Creating Imaginative Fiction by Jeff VanderMeer, with Jeremy Zerfoss (Abrams Image)
  • Writing Excuses Season 8 by Brandon Sanderson, Dan Wells, Mary Robinette Kowal, Howard Tayler, Jordan Sanderson

BEST GRAPHIC STORY (552 ballots)

  • Girl Genius Vol 13: Agatha Heterodyne & The Sleeping City written by Phil and Kaja Foglio; art by Phil Foglio; colors by Cheyenne Wright (Airship Entertainment)
  • “The Girl Who Loved Doctor Who” Written by Paul Cornell, Illustrated by Jimmy Broxton (Doctor Who Special 2013, IDW)
  • The Meathouse Man Adapted from the story by George R.R. Martin and Illustrated by Raya Golden (Jet City Comics)
  • Saga Vol 2 Written by Brian K. Vaughn, Illustrated by Fiona Staples (Image Comics )
  • Time by Randall Munroe (XKCD)

BEST DRAMATIC PRESENTATION (LONG FORM) (995 ballots)

  • Frozen Screenplay by Jennifer Lee; Directed by Chris Buck & Jennifer Lee (Walt Disney Studios)
  • Gravity Written by Alfonso Cuarón & Jonás Cuarón; Directed by Alfonso Cuarón (Esperanto Filmoj; Heyday Films; Warner Bros.)
  • The Hunger Games: Catching Fire Screenplay by Simon Beaufoy & Michael Arndt; Directed by Francis Lawrence (Color Force; Lionsgate)
  • Iron Man 3 Screenplay by Drew Pearce & Shane Black; Directed by Shane Black (Marvel Studios; DMG Entertainment; Paramount Pictures)
  • Pacific Rim Screenplay by Travis Beacham & Guillermo del Toro; Directed by Guillermo del Toro (Legendary Pictures, Warner Bros., Disney Double Dare You)

BEST DRAMATIC PRESENTATION (SHORT FORM) (760 ballots)

  • An Adventure in Space and Time Written by Mark Gatiss; Directed by Terry McDonough (BBC Television)
  • Doctor Who: “The Day of the Doctor” Written by Steven Moffat, Directed by Nick Hurran (BBC)
  • Doctor Who: “The Name of the Doctor” Written by Steven Moffat, Directed by Saul Metzstein (BBC)
  • The Five(ish) Doctors Reboot Written & Directed by Peter Davison (BBC Television)
  • Game of Thrones: “The Rains of Castamere” Written by David Benioff & D.B. Weiss; Directed by David Nutter (HBO Entertainment)
  • Orphan Black: “Variations under Domestication” Written by Will Pascoe; Directed by John Fawcett (Temple Street Productions; Space/BBC America)

Note: category has 6 nominees due to a tie for 5th place.

BEST EDITOR - SHORT FORM (656 ballots)

  • John Joseph Adams
  • Neil Clarke
  • Ellen Datlow
  • Jonathan Strahan
  • Sheila Williams

BEST EDITOR - LONG FORM (632 ballots)

  • Ginjer Buchanan
  • Sheila Gilbert
  • Liz Gorinsky
  • Lee Harris
  • Toni Weisskopf

BEST PROFESSIONAL ARTIST (624 ballots)

  • Galen Dara
  • Julie Dillon
  • Daniel Dos Santos
  • John Harris
  • John Picacio
  • Fiona Staples

Note: category has 6 nominees due to a tie for 5th place.

BEST SEMIPROZINE (411 ballots)

  • Apex Magazine edited by Lynne M. Thomas, Jason Sizemore and Michael Damian Thomas
  • Beneath Ceaseless Skies edited by Scott H. Andrews
  • Interzone edited by Andy Cox
  • Lightspeed Magazine edited by John Joseph Adams, Rich Horton and Stefan Rudnicki
  • Strange Horizons edited by Niall Harrison, Brit Mandelo, An Owomoyela, Julia Rios, Sonya Taaffe, Abigail Nussbaum, Rebecca Cross, Anaea Lay and Shane Gavin

BEST FANZINE (478 ballots)

  • The Book Smugglers edited by Ana Grilo and Thea James
  • A Dribble of Ink edited by Aidan Moher
  • Elitist Book Reviews edited by Steven Diamond
  • Journey Planet edited by James Bacon, Christopher J Garcia, Lynda E. Rucker, Pete Young, Colin Harris and Helen J. Montgomery
  • Pornokitsch edited by Anne C. Perry and Jared Shurin

BEST FANCAST (396 ballots)

  • The Coode Street Podcast, Jonathan Strahan and Gary K. Wolfe
  • Doctor Who: Verity! Deborah Stanish, Erika Ensign, Katrina Griffiths, L.M. Myles, Lynne M. Thomas and Tansy Rayner Roberts
  • Galactic Suburbia Podcast, Alisa Krasnostein, Alexandra Pierce, Tansy Rayner Roberts (Presenters) and Andrew Finch (Producer)
  • SF Signal Podcast, Patrick Hester
  • The Skiffy and Fanty Show, Shaun Duke, Jen Zink, Julia Rios, Paul Weimer, David Annandale, Mike Underwood and Stina Leicht
  • Tea and Jeopardy, Emma Newman
  • The Writer and the Critic, Kirstyn McDermott and Ian Mond

Note: category has 7 nominees due to a tie for 5th place.

BEST FAN WRITER (521 ballots)

  • Liz Bourke
  • Kameron Hurley
  • Foz Meadows
  • Abigail Nussbaum
  • Mark Oshiro

BEST FAN ARTIST (316 ballots)

  • Brad W. Foster
  • Mandie Manzano
  • Spring Schoenhuth
  • Steve Stiles
  • Sarah Webb

JOHN W. CAMPBELL AWARD FOR BEST NEW WRITER (767 ballots)

Award for the best new professional science fiction or fantasy writer of 2012 or 2013, sponsored by Dell Magazines (not a Hugo Award).

  • Wesley Chu
  • Max Gladstone *
  • Ramez Naam *
  • Sofia Samatar *
  • Benjanun Sriduangkaew

*Finalists in their 2nd year of eligibility.

 

1939 Retro-Hugo Award nominees

233 valid nominating ballots were received and counted from the members of LoneStarCon 3, Loncon 3 and Sasquan. (226 Electronic and 7 Paper.)

BEST NOVEL (208 ballots)

  • Carson of Venus by Edgar Rice Burroughs (Argosy, February 1938)
  • Galactic Patrol by E. E. Smith (Astounding Stories, February 1938)
  • The Legion of Time by Jack Williamson (Astounding Science-Fiction, July 1938)
  • Out of the Silent Planet by C. S. Lewis (The Bodley Head)
  • The Sword in the Stone by T. H. White (Collins)

BEST NOVELLA (125 ballots)

  • Anthem by Ayn Rand (Cassell)
  • “A Matter of Form” by H. L. Gold (Astounding Science-Fiction, December 1938)
  • “Sleepers of Mars” by John Wyndham (Tales of Wonder, March 1938)
  • “The Time Trap” by Henry Kuttner (Marvel Science Stories, November 1938)
  • “Who Goes There?” by John W. Campbell/Don A. Stuart (Astounding Science-Fiction, August 1938)

BEST NOVELETTE (80 ballots)

  • “Dead Knowledge” by John W. Campbell/Don A. Stuart (Astounding Stories, January 1938)
  • “Hollywood on the Moon” by Henry Kuttner (Thrilling Wonder Stories, April 1938)
  • “Pigeons From Hell” by Robert E. Howard (Weird Tales, May 1938)
  • “Rule 18” by Clifford D. Simak (Astounding Science-Fiction, July 1938)
  • “Werewoman” by C. L. Moore (Leaves #2, Winter 1938)

BEST SHORT STORY (108 ballots)

“The Faithful” by Lester Del Rey (Astounding Science-Fiction, April 1938)
“Helen O’Loy” by Lester Del Rey (Astounding Science-Fiction, December 1938)
“Hollerbochen’s Dilemma” by Ray Bradbury (Imagination!, January 1938)
“How We Went to Mars” by Arthur C. Clarke (Amateur Science Stories, March 1938)
“Hyperpilosity” by L. Sprague de Camp (Astounding Science-Fiction, April 1938)

BEST DRAMATIC PRESENTATION (SHORT FORM) (137 ballots)

  • Around the World in 80 Days by Jules Verne. Written & Directed by Orson Welles (The Mercury Theater of the Air, CBS)
  • A Christmas Carol by Charles Dickens. Written & Directed by Orson Welles (The Campbell Playhouse, CBS)
  • Dracula by Bram Stoker. Written by Orson Welles and John Houseman; Directed by Orson Welles (The Mercury Theater of the Air, CBS)
  • R. U. R.  by Karel Capek. Produced by Jan Bussell (BBC)
  • The War of the Worlds by H. G. Wells. Written by Howard Koch & Anne Froelick; Directed by Orson Welles (The Mercury Theater of the Air, CBS)

BEST EDITOR - SHORT FORM (99 ballots)

John W. Campbell
Walter H. Gillings
Ray Palmer
Mort Weisinger
Farnsworth Wright

BEST PROFESSIONAL ARTIST (86 ballots)

Margaret Brundage
Virgil Finlay
Frank R. Paul
Alex Schomburg
H. W. Wesso

BEST FANZINE (42 ballots)

Fantascience Digest edited by Robert A. Madle
Fantasy News edited by James V. Taurasi
Imagination! edited by Forrest J Ackerman
Novae Terrae edited by Maurice Hanson
Tomorrow edited by Doug Mayer

BEST FAN WRITER (50 ballots)

Forrest J Ackerman
Ray Bradbury
Arthur Wilson “Bob” Tucker
Harry Warner Jr.
Donald A. Wollheim

 

The Hugo Awards have been given since 1953, and every year since 1955, by the annual World Science Fiction Convention (the “Worldcon”). The first Worldcon occurred in New York City in 1939, and Worldcons have been held annually since then, except during World War II.

This year’s Worldcon is LonCon 3, which will be held from August 14 through 18 in London, England. As Loncon 3 marks the 75th anniversary of that first convention in 1939, they will also be presenting Retrospective Hugo Awards for the best works of 1938.

This year’s Guests of Honor are John Clute, Malcolm Edwards, Chris Foss, Jeanne Gomoll, Robin Hobb, Bryan Talbot, and Iain M Banks (in Memoriam).

Hugo and Retro-Hugo Award finalists are selected by members of the previous Worldcon and of the upcoming one; winners are selected by members of the upcoming one. All Attending and Supporting members of LonCon 3 can vote on the final ballot. For more information about voting in the Hugo Awards, or becoming a member of LonCon 3, please click here.

111 comments
Colin Bell
1. SchuylerH
Predictions!

2014:

Novel: Ancillary Justice or Neptune's Brood but leaning towards the Leckie.

Novella: "Wakulla Springs" or "Equoid".

Novelette: "The Waiting Stars" or "The Truth of Fact, the Truth of Feeling".

Short Story: "Selkie Stories Are for Losers".

1939:

Novel: The Sword in the Stone.

Novella: "Who Goes There?"

Novelette/Short Story: Can't call at the moment.
David Goldfarb
2. David_Goldfarb
I find myself wondering whether the electronic Voters' Packet will include the entire Wheel of Time series. (Quite honestly, I'm not going to read it, even if it does -- I was willing to read four thousand-page tomes to judge A Feast for Crows, but you have to draw the line somewhere.)
Alan Heuer 2.0
4. Alan Heuer 2.0
It is an absolute travesty that a 14-book series published over a span of 20-something years could get nominated for best novel of the year. It is a clear violation of the spirit of the rules. The LonCon 3 committee should never have allowed it. Ridiculous!
Colin Bell
5. SchuylerH
@4: Apparently, WoT is defined under WSFS 3.2.6 as "a work appearing in a number of parts" and thus the whole is technically eligible for the year of the final part. Feels a bit "rules lawyer-y" to me but there you go.

Anyway, "Time" and The Five(ish) Doctors Reboot got nominated. I'm happy about that.
Alan Heuer 2.0
6. Shawn Cooke
@4 - Or at least, of your interpretation of the spirit of the rules. The rule states that "a work appearing in a number of parts shall be eligible for the year of the final part". There is a clear implication there that such a work would be published over a number of years, as indeed the Wheel of Time was.

So was it a series of works, or a single work published in installments? And in fact, what is the difference? You could probably make a definitive case that the collected Doc Savage is clearly a series of works, and a The Lord of the Rings is a single work published in three volumes over the course of several years. But the line gets muddy in cases like The Wheel of Time.

If we assume that the WSFS Constitution is a living document, capable of interpretation, then the "spirit" of the rules will be spelled out by what voters choose.
Alan Heuer 2.0
7. Alan Heuer 2.0
@5: I understand that, SchuylerH. But that rule was meant for novels serialized in magazines over the course of a few months. SF novels used to be published that way quite often. But allowing a 14-book series published over the span of 20+ years to compete for "best novel of the year" is absurd. It was a stupid decision by the committee. Again, a clear violation of the spirit of the rules.
Colin Bell
8. SchuylerH
@7: I suppose part of the difficulty comes in determining when a series really has finished. I don't think anyone could have seen, say, four more Foundation novels in 1966...
Shaun Duke
9. Arconna
Definitely a lot to squee about here. Fan categories are rockin for sure :)

Congrats to everyone on the list :)
Peter Ahlstrom
10. PeterAhlstrom
Alan: The person who drafted the text of the rule in the first place posted in a previous thread saying that he or she agreed with the interpretation of the rules that allows for the Wheel of Time to be nominated. See comment #7 at this link: http://www.tor.com/blogs/2014/01/the-wheel-of-time-hugo-award-robert-jordan
Alan Heuer 2.0
11. Alan Heuer 2.0
@6: Shawn Cooke:

The rule was meant to take care of such cases as where a novel was serialized in, say, the November, December, and January issues of a magazine. The year of the January issue would determine the year of eligibility. Come on! A 14-book series published over the span of 20+ years competing for best novel of the year? Someone has got to be kidding me!
April Moore
12. aprildmoore
Personally, I'm delighted The Wheel of Time can finally get some long, overdue recognition.
Alan Heuer 2.0
14. Missblake7
Three cheers for Sanderson! Finishing the labor of love for departed Robert Jordan should be a stand alone award..
Thank you!
Alan Heuer 2.0
16. königr
I for one am very happy that the Wheel of Time got nominated and am okay with how the decision played out. I think that I would say the same about other great works were they to have been substituted appropriately. I am proud that the series has set this precedent, however.

If they intended the rules to be interpreted differently, they should have rewritten them, made a different decision in accepting its eligibility, or they should not have it be a popular vote.

Anything not expressly forbidden is mandatory.

Sometimes a piece should be judged in its entirety. It was a good decision.
Ole A. Imsen
17. Weirdmage
"3.2.4: Works appearing in a series are
eligible as individual works, but the series as a whole is not
eligible. However, a work appearing in a number of parts shall be
eligible for the year of the final part."

(Source: http://www.wsfs.org/bm/const-2013.htm#article3)

Someone once said that a series that was never nominated in its individual parts could be eligible because of that rule.
However, I am pretty sure that was said exclusively about Game of Thrones Season One being nominated.

It doesn't really matter. It is clearly totally ridiculous by any sane means to allow Wheel of Time to be nominated as a novel. (Not that there is any sanity in the people running the Hugo Award to stop them from doing crazy shit.) But what is a scandal this time is Vox Day's nomination. Block voting is illegal according to all the people I have seen talk about the Hugo rules. So since Vox Day is nominated, it either means that a large part of Hugo voters are right-wing bastards. Or that the people tasked with upholding the rules are letting block-voting slide to get Vox Day on the ballot.
Ron Garrison
18. Man-0-Manetheran
The Wheel of Time is ONE story. It is not a series. It is now complete and therefore eligible and deserving.
Alan Heuer 2.0
19. mutantalbinocrocodile
Really excited! (Though Neptune's Brood was outstanding and this will be a tough category.) As several other commenters have noted, on occasion the fantasy genre does generate a work which, however extraordinarily long--such that admittedly the modern genre of "novel" doesn't really fit--is a single work of prose fiction, and The Wheel of Time clearly meets both the letter and the spirit of the rules. If you hate ultra-long-format fiction, don't vote for it, but I think that this is a spot-on ruling.
T C
20. Freelancer
From the day Robert Jordan began writing The Wheel of Time, it was planned as a single work in multiple parts which would not all be published in the same year. That the number of parts, the number of years, or the resultant scope was beyond even his original imaginings, is irrelevant.

The theme and overarching plot of the story is singular throughout. No one volume can stand apart from the rest as a concluded saga. It is therefore, Q.E.D., one novel in multiple volumes.

Fairly sad to whine about an abuse of rules, when the individual responsible for inclusion of said rule had already been asked, and considers The Wheel of Time's consideration to be a proper application of that very rule.


@17 RE Opera Vita Aeterna

Or, many somebodies not you had a different reaction to the work, which was not attributable to them substituting a predisposed political disagreement with the author's worldview, for their appreciation of his fiction.
Alan Heuer 2.0
21. RobL
Somebody go revise the list of longest novels on Wikipedia, because The Wheel of Time is more than double the length of the previous record holder.
Glen V
22. Ways
WoT clearly deserves a shot at a Hugo in some way, shape or form.
Alan Heuer 2.0
23. DerekS
Why wasn't Her nominated for Best Dramatic Presentation, Long Form? Was it ineligible for some reason? Seems odd that a sci-fi movie could be nominated for the Best Picture Oscar but miss out on the Hugo altogether.
Alan Heuer 2.0
24. CHip137
IMDB says that Her was released on 10 Jan 2014 (on the full page -- don't ask me why the search pulldown says "2013"). Unless they're off, it's not eligible until next year.
Alan Heuer 2.0
25. Mattyh
Holy shit, Wheet of Time!
Alan Heuer 2.0
26. Alan Heuer 2.0
@22 Ways:

Each novel in the series had its shot in its year of eligibility. A Memory of Light was legitimately eligible this year. But the WHOLE SERIES nominated for Best Novel of 2013. That's ridiculous.
jeff hendrix
27. templarsteel

BEST NOVEL
Warbound, Book III of the Grimnoir Chronicles by Larry Correia (Baen Books)

The Wheel of Time by Robert Jordan and Brandon Sanderson (Tor Books)
I'm really torn between the two, both are awesome in their own way
T C
28. Freelancer
Each volume in the series is easily seen to not be a novel in and of itself, but an installment of a larger whole. Some series are crafted for each volume to stand alone, The Wheel of Time was not, which could be seen as a roadblock to any one volume being nominated. By this thinking, your statement that each had a shot when published is much less valid.
Alan Heuer 2.0
29. Sam Lubell
I think the first few books of WoT read more like the continuing adventures of the characters rather than one book chopped up into pieces like Blackout/All Clear. Yes, the ultimate big bad wasn't defeated but the villain of the book was (or at least had his/her scheme thwarted). A nomination for Memory of Light would have made more sense.

That said, I was also surprised that Gaiman and Scalzi were not nominated.

And something needs to be done about the short story category. This is the second year in a row where not enough stories reached the threshold of enough nominations to fill the ballot slots.
Alan Heuer 2.0
30. Alan Heuer 2.0
@10: Peter Ahlstom:

I am unpersuaded. The Beggars in Spain analogy is bad. So Nancy Kress publishes a piece of short fiction and years later incorporates that piece of short fiction into a novel, and the novel is nominated for a Hugo. That hardly equates to what has happened here. Someone publishes a novel and that brings 13 predecessor novels into its year of eligibility? So less than 10% of the series was published during its year of supposed eligibility.

Gee, maybe somebody should find some notes Douglas Adams might have had for a Hitchhiker novel that never got written. It could be published as written by Douglas Adams and So-And-So. Then the whole Hitchhiker series could get nominated for Best Novel of 2015! Awesome!

Do we even know if this timilloo guy is legit? I think if you had asked the drafters of the rule at the time if a series of 14 novels published over the span of 20+ years should be eligible collectively for best novel of the YEAR, they'd have laughed you out of the room. Beggars in Spain type situations I'm sure they'd have agreed with as eligible. There have been a lot of those.
Tricia Irish
31. Tektonica
The WoT is ONE story arc, spaced out over many years. It is an amazing accomplishment and has influenced countless others in the field. I am very happy to see it nominated.
Alan Heuer 2.0
32. VampireDoctor
Iron Man 3...nominated for one of the most prestigious awards in ScFi/Fantasy...way to keep the genre in the gutter, people.
Alan Heuer 2.0
33. J. Bradford DeLong
20. Freelancer:

So will you make the pitch that I would enjoy reading OVE?
Alan Heuer 2.0
34. VampireDoctor
I Read the Hugo Noms And I Must Scream....on the bright side, no Scalzi at least
Alan Heuer 2.0
35. CiaraCat
@Alan Heuer 2.0

re: WoT, Alan, it's done. It is on the short list for best novel.

If you are arguing that it is, indeed, a body of work that deserves recognition, but that it doesn't make sense or is unfair to have it compete against single-volume novels for the best novel award, perhaps you might consider starting a petition to the Hugo award committee, requesting that it be given some other kind of recognition, but that it be removed from this category.

If you are arguing that it's not a good work of fiction and doesn't deserve recognition, then your best course of action would be, don't vote for it. Maybe be vocal and campaign for the novel you think should win instead.
Alan Heuer 2.0
36. CiaraCat
TOR: please update the last paragraph of the article! It's referring people to last year's WorldCon. They need to buy membership to LonCon3 to be able to vote. :)
Irene Gallo
37. Irene
36: Thanks. The link is now fixed.
Kat J
38. CiaraCat
@37: maybe the text of the last paragraph too? Still references LoneStarCon3 instead of LonCon3. :)
T C
40. Freelancer
J. Bradford DeLong @33

It took me a few moments to decode your acronym, OVE. I'm to understand that you are referencing Opera Vita Aeterna (Which would be abbreviated OVA, hence my confusion). I cannot recommend one way or another regarding this work. I know of Vox Day's writing ability, so I would guess that it is at least clearly comprehensible, but of the story I know nothing.

My point was that the commenter to whom I responded very likely had no more awareness of this work than do I, but was crying because of Vox Day's strong conservative/libertarian political views, hence the unwarranted, and frankly insane, accusation of the Hugo committee as "right-wing" for it having been nominated.

That would be equivalent to a Bible-believing Christian suggesting that the fiction works of Asimov or Verne are unworthy of being read simply because of the religious (or non-religious) worldview of the author. Asimov's atheism never stopped me from finding his stories to be among the most brilliant I could imagine reading.
Alan Heuer 2.0
41. AndrewV
A large part of the many thousands of hours and thousands of dollars I have spent on SF/F books in the past 16 years is because of Robert Jordan's books. I was never hooked on SF/F until I tripped over the Eye of the World at Waldenbooks in 1998. The fact that this man does not even have a single nomination for a Hugo until this year is an abomination. The failure to nominate Harriet McDougal Rigney, who edited the series (as well as Ender's Game and The Black Company), is every bit as bad.

There are those who hate the series for whatever reason they have. These individuals have every right to do so. However, the fact is the Epic Fantasy genre would not be as robust as it is today without the contributions of Robert Jordan. He brought the genre to the mainstream like no man since Tolkien. He deserves a Hugo many times over.
Ole A. Imsen
42. Weirdmage
@Freelancer

I did not accuse the Hugo committee of being right-wing. I accused them of allowing block voters. Or if that is not the case, there being a lot of right-wing Hugo voters.
If you had followed things surrounding VD in recent years, I think a conclusion that only right-wingers would read his stuff would be a fair conclusion.
I've seen several mentions of both VD and Larry Correia encouraging people to vote for them as a protest. Whether you call that block voting, or a lot of right-wingers voting doesn't matter. -So what you call an insane accusation is just reality.

When it comes to your assertion that WoT is one novel, that is clearly totally ludicrous. I have read The Eye of the World, and that is a novel with a clear ending. There is lots of standalone novels that have less of an ending than it.

But what I think is important is the precedent, and that is that individual books are the ones nominated. Lots of books in series have been nominated, and even won, in the past. (Maybe the best example is Kim Stanley Robinson's Mars books.)
As far as I know a series where even one of the novels has been nominated is inelligeble for the novel award. That none of the individual books in WoT where deemed good enough by the Hugo voters to be nominated doesn't mean that the whole series should be so as a consellation price.
Alan Heuer 2.0
43. mutantalbinocrocodile
@42, as a consolation prize, absolutely not. But if in the opinion of the nominators the entire work achieves something artistically that no individual part did, because major themes were nowhere near developed except in the entirety, then that's different. Let the voters decide whether it's a worthy nominee now.

As well, on the worthwhile topic of unpopular viewpoints well expressed by @40, that's actually an issue in the retro-Hugos as well. I have no idea at the moment how to vote between Out of the Silent Planet and The Sword in the Stone (if it was the entirety of The Once and Future King that would be easier--which is kind of relevant to the Jordan point as well), but I think it's important for all voters in this category to assess Out of the Silent Planet on its merits as sci-fi even if they hate the religious content, exactly as @40 recommends if it was the opposite case with an Asimov novel.
Kevin Baijens
44. ImRhoven
"My point was that the commenter to whom I responded very likely had no more awareness of this work than do I, but was crying because of Vox Day's strong conservative/libertarian political views, hence the unwarranted, and frankly insane, accusation of the Hugo committee as "right-wing" for it having been nominated. "

Calling Vox Day conservative/libertarian is an insult to every reasonable conservative and libertarian in the world. He is so far beyond the scope of normalcy that "right-wing" really does not apply anymore to him or his fanbase. Just call him what he is: a mysogynist, homophobic and white supremacist relic from a bygone age. Even Card's spoutings pale to what have come out of this guy's mouth/keyboard. The euphimisms are damaging both to the actual rigth-wing political spectrum and all the minorities he likes to trample on.

I haven't read any of his fiction, (and I'm not going to, I have better things to spend my time on) but going by his blogposts I doubt we're dealing with a literary genius.
Colin Bell
45. SchuylerH
@19 & 43: I will admit to being one of those people who invariably avoid Del Rey style epic fantasy. (I gave Jordan a try but it wasn't my thing) I liked Neptune's Brood a lot but it's quite: rarefied? I think Ann Leckie's thrilling heroics (even with the unconventional look at gender) have a broader appeal than a novel about a kind of debt that doesn't exist yet.

The 39's are difficult. Both Out of the Silent Planet and The Sword in the Stone are influential and often didactic in their different ways but I prefer the latter on the whole: I am fond of the fantastical world of Malacandra but I find White's novel is subtler than Lewis's and, I think, stronger for it. I suppose that aside from what you think of an author's views, you must also consider how well the author was able to express them.

I wonder what effect the Worldcon's British location had on voting. I see that Wyndham turned up in the novella category. I enjoyed "Sleepers of Mars" and would like to see Wyndham win a Hugo but it didn't add a great deal to Stowaway to Mars and anyway, it's up against "Who Goes There?".

@44: Full disclosure: I have read the 1996 novel Rebel Moon (having liked Bethke's "Cyberpunk"). Imagine a staggeringly inept attempt to recreate The Moon Is a Harsh Mistress, only without any of that novel's depth, inventiveness or skill. I disposed of my copy some years ago, with great relief...
Steven Halter
46. stevenhalter
I look forward to the Hugo packet so that I can read the works that I haven't yet.
Alan Heuer 2.0
47. Noor
I find it strange that people are questioning the desicions of the Hugo committee when the voting is done by people! if they interfer people will be upset, if they don't, people will be upset too!
I actually respect thier decision to stay out of it and let people decide, however, I think voters should be more carefull when voting and chose the best work there is out there, I mean I love the wheel of time, yet I debated putting the name on the ballot to the last minute because I didn't want to be unfair to other great books out there, and I'll surely debate it again when the time comes to vote, because this is the voters
responsibility, not the Hugo committee.
also I've never heard of Vox Day before..oh right because not everyone lives in US or keeps up with politics ( or whatever he's involved in, I don't care), I hardly ever research authers to decide reading thier books, and no matter how horrible a writer is, there would allways be a precentage of people who are only interested in the books and would vote for them, so please don't discredit thier votes just because they are not aware of writers reputation.
Alan Heuer 2.0
48. Kat W.
I am so happy Wheel of Time is nominated! It deserves to win, it has been such a formative part of my life. Wonderful series, wonderful authors!
Rich Bennett
49. Neuralnet
I am surprised at how few people actually nominated novels... It is so easy to do and very inexpensive to be a supporting member of these cons. My advice to people who don't like the WoT nominated (note it hasn't won anything yet) is to sign up and vote for something else.
Alan Heuer 2.0
50. RustyM
I've been reading up on the voting system used to award the Hugos, and I want to make sure I have something straight.

If there were, say, five nominees in a given category... and I could see the award going to four of them, but there was one that made me say, "No way!"... then my preferred strategy would be to vote for the four acceptable nominees in order of preference, then vote for "No Award" in fifth place, and not vote for the unacceptable work in any place at all?

Have I got that right?
Colin Bell
51. SchuylerH
@50: My understanding is that you would rank the four you like first in order of preference, then put "No Award" in fifth place and then the novel you strongly dislike in the sixth and last place, effectively saying that you rather have no winner than see this novel win.
Don Barkauskas
52. bad_platypus
RustyM @50: Following the rules as described at the Hugo site, in your scenario (only one "unworthy" candidate), it is completely equivalent to leave it off or put it in 6th (after "No Award").

If there are two or more you don't feel are worthy (which happened to me last year in the Campbell Award), then it actually could matter slightly, and you should rank all of them in preference order after "No Award."

As for the Wheel of Time debate, I'm a huge fan of the series, but I initially thought it was contrary to the spirit of the rule for it to be nominated. When the author of the rule said otherwise, I changed my mind. :-)
April Moore
53. aprildmoore
@42 - The "ending" of "The Eye of the World" was an intentional "red herring," because it reflected the protagonist's desire to believe that he could proceed with a normal life. That is the only one of the fourteen novels that could potentially work as a stand alone. It is also the only one of the novels that bears any sort of resemblance to Tolkien, but that too was intentional, in an attempt to draw in a similar audience that might have an appetite for long-form, epic fiction. Once you start on Book Two ("The Great Hunt"), it is very difficult to put the series down, and that becomes even more true after Book Three ("The Dragon Reborn"). After I finished Book Three, I wondered what could possibly happen next and once more Jordan began to reveal the even broader game that was being played, with the first three books comprising only the opening moves. To this day, Books 4 and 5 are my favorites of the story because it is in these you truly begin to comprehend the scope of the world Jordan had created.

I realize that reading a larger section of The Wheel of Time is a big commitment in time, but if you read beyond Book 1, you rapidly see why the series is truly one story that describes the events taking place over the course of three years, and not a series of stand-alone works.

I would also point out that Jordan wrote both the ending scene of The Wheel of Time (as published in "A Memory of Light") and the first scene of The Wheel of Time (the prologue of "The Eye of the World") when he first started working on the first installment. The remaining books simply filled in the events that fell between. He clearly had the entire story - a single story - in mind from the very beginning.

@45 - That was a well-thought-out explanation of your opinions re: Retro Hugo nominations. Thanks!
Publius 75
54. publius75
If you are only going to nominate the Wheel of Time once it really makes sense to nominate it as a whole as opposed to any individual novel. The same could be said regarding ASoIaF, or any other epic fantasy series.

@44 You are absolutely correct Vox's world view is completly different from your average conservative/libertarian.

With that being said, I doubt that Vox Day is guilty of anything mischevious in regards to getting his work on the short list. No matter how you look at it you have to pay to vote. No disrespect to the Hugos, but they're not worth the financial investment to get a favorite author an award that 99.9% of the world has never heard of before. Say what you will of Vox Day, but he's not guilty of stuffing the ballot box or doing anything that other authors have done in the past.
Colin Bell
55. SchuylerH
@53: Thankyou.

An open question: what else could have gone on the 2014 shortlist? My vote goes to Christopher Priest's novel The Adjacent, which was the only new book last year that I read straight through in one sitting.
Alan Heuer 2.0
56. T115
The wheel of time is ONE story. There are foreshadowings in book 1, 2 and 3 that plays out in book 12,13 and 14 and so on.
Alan Heuer 2.0
57. Alan Heuer 2.0
@56: T115

So what if it's one story? 90+% of it was published before the year of eligibility. It is beyond ridiculous for it to be competing for best novel of 2013. Also, water is wet.
Theresa Gray
58. Terez27
To clarify what April said above, RJ said he could have written the last scene when he began writing Eye, but he didn't actually write it until just before his death. Either way, this is the last line of the first book:
"The Prophecies will be fulfilled," the Aes Sedai whispered. "The Dragon is Reborn."
That in itself is enough to show the story is just beginning. Aside from that, there are references to prophecies all throughout the book, almost none of which have been fulfilled at the end.

I don't pay much attention to the Hugos, but I just thought I would throw that out there.
Alan Heuer 2.0
59. jere7my
The Lord of the Rings, for various reasons, was published in three volumes, though it was intended to be a single novel and could have (and has) been published as such. Fellowship and Two Towers were first published in 1954; Return of the King was published in 1955. Would anyone here have objected to nominating the complete Lord of the Rings for Best Novel at NYcon II in 1956, despite two thirds of it having been published prior to 1955? If RotK had not been delayed, and been published with the other volumes in 1954 as originally intended, would it have made any more sense to nominate LotR as a whole in 1955? (Ignore, for the sake of argument, any quibbles about UK vs. US publication dates, and the many changes to the rules for nomination since then.) Apparently, the list of nominees from 1956 has not survived, so this is an open question.

I'm not a particular fan of the Wheel of Time—I stopped reading after a thousand-page book in which nothing at all happened, after which one of the bad guys came back to life, which to my mind meant the plot was actually going backwards—but it certainly seems like there should be a way to honor long-form storytelling that takes more than one year to complete.
Colin Bell
60. SchuylerH
@59: Er, I would probably have wanted Return of the King nominated by itself, with the general understanding that a win is a win for the trilogy as well as the novel. I'm not sure that it would have got anywhere though; it was a British hardcover fantasy at a time when the Hugos were generally given to American magazine SF. (It may be of interest that the entire trilogy won the 1957 International Fantasy Award)

There was a Hugo award for best all-time series in 1966: the nominees were Asimov's Foundation (the eventual winner), Burroughs' Barsoom, Heinlein's Future History, "Doc" Smith's Lensman and LOTR. An award for "Best Series Concluding in the Last Decade" (or similar) might work, failing that, we could have some kind of life-achievement award in fantasy or a hall of fame, for authors whose body of work as a whole is more significant than its individual volumes.
Walker White
61. Walker
@54
No disrespect to the Hugos, but they're not worth the financial investment to get a favorite author an award that 99.9% of the world has never heard of before.
You have absolutely no understanding of the white suprematist right if you believe that. Vox Day explicitly asked his blog readership to pay the $40 to vote and they did. Gladly.

This is the result of his long-running feud with Scalzi. Vox Day was (allegedly) booted from the SFWA for his racist views. When Scalzi won the Hugo last year, Vox saw this as a way at getting back at him.
Alan Heuer 2.0
62. chicago t
Overall, the quality of the sci-fi found among the contest winners is usually pretty solid. My bookstore has a whole section devoted to winners by year. Makes it easy. I want to give a shout out to my new favorite book, Teramar by T.M. Murray on Amazon.
Deana Whitney
63. Braid_Tug
Said it on FB, will say it here:

1) Super happy WoT got the Hugo nod. So even if it does not win the big award, it is now qualified as "Hugo Nominated."
The final book is strong, but if read without the pervious parts, it cannot deliver the full emotional impact.

2) Sad that Harriet McDougal did not get a nod for "Best Editor - Long Form." Without her input, the series would not exist as it stands.
Paul Howard
64. DrakBibliophile
On the "evil Right Wingers" pushing their books, the Hugos have always been about the "most popular" books, stories, etc not the "best" books, stories, etc.

While I don't know how "popular" Vox Day is, Larry Correia (who has been also accused of ballot stuffing) has the sales figures to be considered "popular".

I'll only say that I've enjoyed Correia's work more than I enjoyed past Hugo winners.
Steven Halter
65. stevenhalter
A few points:
1) The Worldcon comittee has presented the short list of candidates. As per:
3.8.2: The Worldcon Committee shall determine the eligibility of nominees and assignment to the proper category of works nominated in more than one category.
So, eligibility is ruled on by the Worldcon comittee. They did that and thus the list is valid.

2) If you don't happen to like how the WSFS and/or the Hugo are run then:
Section 6.6: Amendment. The WSFS Constitution may be amended by a motion passed by a simple majority at any Business Meeting but only to the extent that such motion is ratified by a simple majority at the Business Meeting of the subsequent Worldcon.
Section 6.7: Commencement. Any change to the Constitution of WSFS shall take effect at the end of the Worldcon at which such change is ratified, except that no change imposing additional costs or financial obligations upon Worldcon Committees shall be binding upon any Committee already selected at the time when it takes effect.
So, basically (while following the standing rules), you can change things for the next Worldcon in the business meetings of the current Worldcon. All of the details are at www.wsfs.org/bm/rules.html. This also means that the current rules are what they are.

3) I'll also note there are lots of other awards presented by juries, individuals or about any means you like.

4) For current nominees, please do feel free to remark upon what characteristics of the work make it more or less likely to be voted for. I'd be really interested in that sort of discussion. (And, I'll be noting my own thoughts as I gather them together.)
Colin Bell
66. SchuylerH
@65: Well, I've already mentioned that Neptune's Brood is a bit niche. I think that Ancillary Justice had a good balance between story and ideas: it's fun but there's much more to it than just that.

"Equoid" was a strong addition to the Laundryverse but it's very YMMV (then again, "The Concrete Jungle" won... ). I think I'm leaning more towards "Wakulla Springs": I'm not sure that it's really an SFF story, rather, it feels like one.

I don't personally think that the newer Chiang stories hold up as well as the older ones but he tends to win anyway. The two-stranded de Bodard is another strong entry in the Xuya series: really, it's a case of when, not if, she will win the Hugo.

"Selkie Stories Are for Losers" is a short story with excellent characterisation that expands into something much larger in the reader's mind. Do I need to say more?
Paul Howard
67. DrakBibliophile
Stevenhalter, good points.

Too much of what I'm hearing elsewhere isn't about "why this entry is Hugo worthy or not".

It's about "so-and-so writer is evil and his work doesn't deserve to be nominated".

Since I haven't read the nominated works (nor did I nominated any of them), I'll bow out.
Steven Halter
68. stevenhalter
For novel, I've already read Ancillary Justice, Neptune’s Brood and Parasite. I enjoyed them all and right now I would rank them as:
Ancillary Justice - Well written, interesting and touching on AI consciousness, cultural gender identity and a nice mystery.
Neptune’s Brood - Set in the Saturn's Children universe. As SchuylerH said, some of the plot revolves around FTL economics. I quite enjoyed that myself and think it sheds some interesting comments on econimies in general. Also, fun adventures in addition.
Parasite - An interesting take on what it means to be a human and medical experimentation.

I haven't read Warbound, Book III of the Grimnoir Chronicles at all yet and I've only read about five of The Wheel of Time. So, I'll await the Hugo Voter Packet to see how I'll respond to those.
Colin Bell
69. SchuylerH
@68: Avast, Dread Space Pirates Analysts! What do you think of the short fiction and other categories?
Steven Halter
70. stevenhalter
For Novella, I really, really liked Equoid and so the others have a steep hill to climb although I haven't yet read them, so maybe they are all wonderful--more on that once I've read them. Cat Valente was at Minicon this weekend and I generally like her stuff, so I expect that I will like Six Gun Snow White.

For Novellette, I enjoyed The Lady Astronaut of Mars and The Truth of Fact, The Truth of Feeling Ihaven't read the others yet.

I haven't yet read the short stories.
Alan Heuer 2.0
71. mutantalbinocrocodile
Uh, incidentally, is anyone else a little baffled about preferring both Iron Man 3 and Pacific Rim to Ender's Game in Dramatic Presentation Long Format? I know we're already arguing ourselves blue in the face about right-wing politics, but whatever you think about Card's politics, they aren't IN the film version of Ender's Game. I can't help but think that an emotionally resonant version of a novel even the author wrote off as unfilmable should displace one or the other of yet another Marvelverse movie or Guillermo del Toro having fun again (and not as well as he did in Hellboy 2). That said, whatever its chances, quite pleased to see Frozen. Actual worldbuilding is very rare in mainstream animation and it's great to recognize it.

Wish that enough people had seen the Oscar-nominated animated short Feral to consider it for Short Format, but I suppose the distribution was really low. Go watch it on iTunes anyway.
James Nicoll
72. James Davis Nicoll
My suspicion is people actually saw IM3 and (to a lesser extent) PR but not EG. Let me go check ticket sales...

Well, grosses. Number of tickets isn't easily found:

IM3: $409,013,994 (North America)/ $806,426,000 (ROP)/ worldwide gross $1,215,439,994.

PR: $101.8 million (North America)/ $309.2 million (ROP)/ worldwide gross $411 million.

EG: $61.7 (North America)/$63.8
million (ROP)/ worldwide gross $125.5 million.
James Nicoll
73. James Davis Nicoll
I don't know how to delete duplicate articles so I will just edit this one.

No, better idea: irrelevent but pretty:

ROP Gross/US Gross, rounded because it happens they're all really close to a nice round number:

IM3: 2
PR: 3
EG: 1


And as for reviews (from wikipedia)

IM3: Metacritic gave a score of 62 out of 100 based on 43 reviews

PR: Review aggregation website Metacritic gives a rating of 64 out of 100 based on reviews from 48 critics, which indicates "generally favorable" reviews.

EG: Review aggregator Metacritic, which assigns a normalized rating out of 100 based on reviews from critics, gives a score of 51 based on 39 reviews, indicating "mixed or average reviews"

So EG has the disadvantages of having been seen by fewer people than the other two and also not having been liked as much by the people who saw it as the other two.
Alan Heuer 2.0
74. teaman
While I love Wheel of Time I sort of feel that people who complain about it's inclusion in best novel of 2013 are not exactly wrong.

As for other nominees very I am happy to see Ancillary Justice which I really liked .

Finally inclusion of Warbound really suprised me to say the least.
I know people's tastes differ a lot but I just don't see how Warbound could be one of the five best novels of last year.
Yes , it is moderatly fun but in my opinion at least 20 novels from those two lists alone surpass it in majority of ways: http://www.goodreads.com/choiceawards/best-fantasy-books-2013
http://www .goodreads.com/choiceawards/best-science-fiction-books-2013
I am not saying that those lists are full of best novel of the year candidates, though I am sad that some of them are not among the nominees, but at the very least they are choke full of books which in one way or another left me with much stronger impression then Grimnoir.
James Nicoll
75. James Davis Nicoll
Happily, the Hugos not only allow one to rate an undeserving work below all the others, it also allows one to rate said undeserving work below No Award.
Alan Heuer 2.0
76. Alan Heuer 2.0
@75: James Davis Nicoll:

Good point. I have voted in 156 prose fiction Hugo categories over the last 40 years. I have always read all of the nominees in each category I've voted in. I have NEVER before ranked "No Award" above any nominee, even though I've considered some past nominees to be crap. This year I will rank "No Award" at #5 on my ballot for Best Novel. I will not even deign to mark a #6 beside The Wheel of Time. I will ignore it as the bogus nominee that it is.
j p
77. sps49
I am surprised by how many Retro Nominees I have already read. Mostly from the library in Jt. High times.
Alan Heuer 2.0
78. mutantalbinocrocodile
Back to Dramatic Presentation (because the pro-WoT/anti-WoT thing is descending into boredom), where is the BBC radio version of Neverwhere? The rules make it very clear that visuals are not required for a drama nomination. Odd that this outstanding adaptation was ignored when the con is UK-based so the difficulty of getting it in the US (and it wasn't even really that difficult) isn't necessarily the reason.
April Moore
79. aprildmoore
@78 , mutantalbinocrocodile
Agree on your question re: Neverwhere, I wish I had not overlooked it in my own nominations. Pity. Perhaps it is more obscure than we might think? Not sure.
Merchanter Pride
80. MerchanterPride
Hey, though I agree that the WoT topic has already lost savor, Brandon posted on his blog a couple hours ago with his thoughts; it's pretty interesting and worth a read. (Distressingly it is probably, from a technical perspective, the most readable thing I've ever seen him publish. But that is neither here nor there.) He makes a good strong point in conclusion about the problem of criticizing artwork we dislike as distinct from arguing that our own taste is the only acceptable taste, which is worth thinking about I think.

I've read the whole Wheel and I think it is just terrible in big stretches, though I love it a lot; from the point of view of prose craft, it should not win. From the point of view of ambitious architecture, one of the old bones of sci-fi and fantasy, maybe it should! I don't know, I'm too poor to vote for the Hugos.

But I will say, if anybody thinks Scalzi is a better technical writer for any value of good--especially, as relevant here, that Redshirts is more deserving of winning a prize that calls itself "best novel"--than Robert Jordan for the Wheel of Time, then that is a pretty audacious point of view. Not that I'm attacking such a point of view! But, well, yikes. And I just love Scalzi's books! I have devoured each of them with many hours of joy. But you see what I'm saying. If I can stomach Redshirts winning this august prize I think it was so eminently unfit to win, maybe I can stomach the Wheel, too. After all, many of you had to choke down Among Others. And I'm sure there are people out there who snatched out their hair when Susanna Clarke and Bujold won.
Kat J
81. CiaraCat
Here's Brandon Sanderson's blog post, referenced above @80. A good read for anyone with strong feelings about the Wheel of Time, positive or negative, related to its nomination to the Hugo award or otherwise.

http://brandonsanderson.com/the-wheel-of-time-nominated-for-a-hugo-award/
Alice Arneson
82. Wetlandernw
That's a great article. Everyone who has chimed in here, especially on the Wheel of Time issue, really ought to read it.

I've never participated in the WSFC and Hugo Award voting, so I did a little poking around. According to their website,
The Hugos work best when as many fans as possible use their own experience to nominate and vote for the things they think are wonderful.
Since it appears that there are no particular guidelines for what should be considered "award-worthy" other than that you, the reader, thought it was great, I have a question for those of you who have participated in this several times:

What kinds of things do you consider most important as you decide what to nominate, and then as you make your final votes? Do you simply go by what you enjoyed? Do you have a priority system for style, literary value, presentation, timelessness, timeliness.... whatever? What makes you decide that a particular work is worthy or unworthy?
T C
83. Freelancer
How anybody could watch Pacific Rim and then call it a good movie is beyond me. Even the Transformer-enthusiast 12-year-old who went with us recognized it for tired, overblown junk.

Ender's Game, on the other hand, suffered from the political anti-Card campaign when it comes to ticket sales, but it's their loss for having not seen it. As adaptations go, those things which were most changed were primarily mashed together to simplify the screenplay and the runtime, without losing much of the meaning of the story at all, and every central point of the plot was captured quite well. Overall a far more faithful rendition than the Tolkien-based movies by Peter Jackson, and while I'm no harsh critic of those, I know that the original story suffered notably in Jackson's retelling.
T C
84. Freelancer
In other news, I sure wish we could peg Alan Heuer 2.0 down on his opinion of The Wheel of Time. It just might change my mind to know what he really thinks.
Colin Bell
85. SchuylerH
@82: On the simplest level, I use the Miller-Le Guin Test: Can I see myself saying that "Past Hugo Award winners have included A Canticle for Leibowitz, The Left Hand of Darkness and this year's winner, XXXXX by XXXXX"? Because I cling to a noble but hopeless and inaccurate view that each Hugo should go to some genre-redefining work of brilliance, I get disappointed a lot try to go for novels and stories that I feel are doing something new with the genre.

I do want Hugo winners to be engaged with what has gone before, to avoid the awards becoming a rerun. There's still new material to be found in old stories (like in the Samatar).

I think that they should be more than just popcorn entertainment, that they should be inventive. I exhibit a preference for SF over fantasy and I find it interesting to be shown a new future, like the Radchaai empire. Big ideas (such as the interstellar economy of Neptune's Brood) are welcome if handled well but I'm also looking for engaging characters.

I also like to see a distinctive style and, as I've mentioned before, I like it when stories do something interesting with structure (like "The Waiting Stars").

Importantly, I also feel that the winner has to be fun (or, in the case of "Equoid", entertaining in a weird, disturbing way). Generally, I prefer stories with mystery or thriller elements to outright action. This year, I think that the best balance of these elements in the novel category can be found in Ancillary Justice.

@83: I'm quite happy with the long form shortlist for the simple reason that Star Trek Into Darkness isn't on it.
Alan Heuer 2.0
86. Alan Heuer 2.0
@84: Freelancer:

I can answer that question for you, Freelancer. I have not read THE WHEEL OF TIME and have no opinion about its quality.
Alan Heuer 2.0
87. Alan Heuer 2.0
@84: Freelancer:

Perhaps this will provide more insight into my views. I've read the first five books of George R.R. Martin's A Song of Ice and Fire series. I've given my first-place Hugo votes to A Storm of Swords, A Feast for Crows, and A Dance with Dragons in their respective years of eligibility. If, after the last novel (presumably A Dream of Spring) is published, there is a movement to nominate the WHOLE SERIES for a Best Novel Hugo, I would be deadset against it. I would not vote for A Song of Ice and Fire for a Best Novel Hugo. I think that would be wrong. But I'd be willing to consider A Dream of Spring on its merits.

I would have no quarrel if A Memory of Light had been nominated.
Gerd K
88. Kah-thurak
@Alan Heuer
But maybe the Wheel of Time is more deserving of an award as a whole than any of its parts are individually. For the Song of Ice and Fire (when/if it is finished) the opposite may be true.
Steven Halter
89. stevenhalter
Wetlandernw@82:Good questions. For nominating works, I think back over the eligible books that I read in the past year for the ones that I most liked and think deserve a Hugo. As I read new books, I make a mental (and maybe physical) note if I found it particularly good. I don't go out of my way to read every book that is released (impossible). If a book looks good to me I'll read it.
To end up seeming particularly good to me, a book has to be well written, engaging and entertaining. I decide on the books that meet that criteria for me and nominate them. This year I decided that I wouldn't use all five of my votes, but rather do some pre-screening and vote for the ones that I very much most liked. In the novel category, this year, these happened to be Ancillary Justice and Something More Than Night.
Once the short list comes out, I re-evaluate based on what has been nominated and try not to dwell on any nominees that I had that didn't get included. I make sure I've read all of the works and then rank them. I'll usually spend some time mulling this before sending in my final ballot. So, it is basically a "how much did I like it" combined with general writing solidity with a touch of originality thrown in. It all swirls together to end up with the final result. If a book isn't well written, I most probably won't have liked it (I can't think of any poorly put together books as examples). A book might be nicely structured but dull or uninteresting to me and so it would be ranked lower. This makes choices easier.
Sometimes, I might like all of the books on the list and just have to decide. This can be hard, but fun.
Alan Heuer 2.0
90. Alan Heuer 2.0
@88 Kah-thurak:

For all I know, The Wheel of Time may be deserving of a prize for "Greatest Novel Series Ever." My issue is that it does not belong in a competition for "Best Novel of 2013," no matter how good it is. If somebody asked you when The Wheel of Time was published, you wouldn't say The Wheel of Time was published in 2013. You would say The Wheel of Time was published over a span of 23 years from 1990 to 2013. Let's face it, The Wheel of Time is not a creature of 2013.
Rich Bennett
91. Neuralnet
I am always a bit dissapointed by the dramatic presentation short form nominees.. they are all TV shows. There are so many good sci-fi short movies out there on the web (google sci fi short films and check out short of the week)... yet it seems like every year, we have a bunch of dr who episodes to pick from. I like Dr. Who, but I wish we as nominators could add some variety to this category.

As far as WoT, I dont think some of the naysayers are giving the Hugo voters enough credit... I think most will really think about all of the nominees and make a good choice, not just a fan boy/girl choice.
Deana Whitney
92. Braid_Tug
@87, Alan:
Okay, I can see why a SoS won the nomination and your vote.
I don't see why the other two parts were worthy.
But that is just my opinion.

I have never even heard of The Grimanoir Chronicles by Larry Correia.
But if his fans had campaigned to get that entire trilogy nominated, I would not be blasting it out of hand, just because it took longer to write than a normal novel.

The WoT fans had a choice to make, nominate the whole series or just the last book. We now know which way the community voted.

But I plan to give all the nominated books a fair chance. My “to Read” pile has gotten very large.
This is only my second year to participate.

Please read Brandon Sanderson's comments about the situation. He put it better than I could.
Steven Halter
93. stevenhalter
Sanderson's post is quite good and pretty much matches my thoughts from the what should be considered point of view.
Gerd K
94. Kah-thurak
@Alan Heuer
I personally am not sure if the Wheel of Time - or any part of it - truly deserves a Hugo (though there may be winners that did not really do so in my opinion either). As I participate in the voting for the first time this year I will have to make that choice after reading the other nominees. I dont really see why focussing on technicalities is very helpful though...
Henry Lightfoot
95. Henry Lightfoot
Frozen nominated for its screenplay? From my perspective, undeserved.

As far as the Wheel of Time, I am a fan and glad that it at least got a nomination, but I won't disagree with anyone who argues that it is a series of novels, not a single one. Legitimate point, I think. But I don't really care, one way or another.
Steven Halter
96. stevenhalter
I have now read If You Were a Dinosaur, My Love and Opera Vita Aeterna.
If You Were a Dinosaur, My Love (Short Story) is very well done. It has a nice flowing structure. In ways, it is close to a prose poem. Sweetness and sadness intermixed.

Opera Vita Aeterna (Novelette) is not good. The plot manages to both meander and rush. The writing style is clunky. This work is not at all at the level I expect from a Hugo candidate.
Colin Bell
97. SchuylerH
@96: I liked the Swirsky (and there's a wide variety of tones in that short space) but I'm not so sure that it really is an SFF story. (I mean, the Samatar is borderline but... I'm waffling again...)

OVA is pretty much what I expected.
Steven Halter
98. stevenhalter
SchuylerH@97:I'm not sure the Swirsky is exactly SFF, but it does have some science riffs, so good enough. I guess, by the rules it is defined to be SF since it is in the short list.
T C
99. Freelancer
@87

So, you do provide additional insight. To the fact that you're missing the point about the rules as they are right now. Since portions of ASoIaF have been nominated as individual novels, it would not be eligible as a whole whenever (if ever) it is concluded, rendering any analogy moot. The relevant issue for The Wheel of Time is that no isolated part of the story was nominated, and under the rules as they are right now, it is eligible to be nominated as a whole in the year of its conclusion.

That you disagree with the rules as they are right now is more than clearly understood by everyone here. That the nomination falls within the rules as they are right now is not to your liking. None of that changes the fact that it does indeed fall within the rules as they are right now, as affirmed by the author of the rule in question.

As to its worthiness for consideration, that is for each voter to decide. The criticisms of the story for seemingly unnecessary expansion, excessive focus on mundane detail, or dragging of plot portions at a snail's pace are easily available. I would still claim that the magnitude of the story, the interweaving of history, mythology, philosophy, culture, personality, intrigue, politics, honor, and above all, a true good vs evil showdown, take the story to places previously unattempted.

A character from another story I know of, makes the point that it is the novelty, the innovation, of art which induces the greatest success. Well, the critics who claim that The Wheel of Time is derivative never got past the first volume, which was designed to evoke tLotR in its opening. The rest of the story is innovation on steroids, and for anyone with the patience, exceptionally captivating.

It is, by any reasonable measure, worthy.
Daniel Clouser
100. DanielClouser
Why is the WoT nomination so controversial? A Memory of Light, without the rest of the series, probably isn't worthy of nomination. However, the completion of the series is a major event in the Fantasy field and deserves recognition.

What other category does it fit in? Are you just concerned that it will set a precedent that makes you uncomfortable? If so, how often do you think this kind of thing will happen?

It makes sense to consider The Wheel of Time a single serialized novel, and I don't think that's true of most long-form epic fantasy. For example, while I haven't read The Malazan Book of the Fallen, what I've heard about it indicates that it is not a single story in the way that WoT is. The same is certainly true of the Thomas Covenant books, L.E. Modessitt's long series, and any other series that I can think of.
Joris Meijer
101. jtmeijer
@95 Henry Lightfoot

I don't think the dramatic presentation awards are awarding sceenplays, but rather whatever the voters deem important in a dramatic presentation.
Alan Heuer 2.0
102. docrbk
I (almost) never add my sometimes pitiful commentary to discussions such as has been rampant about the Hugo nominations, most of them surrounding the WOT nomination. Virtually all I could add has already been said, including Brandon Sanderson's blog. ASoIAF could be considered similar to WOT in that it is a single long story, although parts of it are years later than the beginning, whereas WOT cover just a couple of years over what, some 10000+ pages. Sure, there were several of the books that plodded along, with the pace accelerating with and after KOD, sure there is/was some derivative (LOTR) storytelling (but LOTR redefined epic fantasy for decades) although not nearly as much as Goodkind's very popular Sword of Truth series borrowd from WOT. I agree, too, that the WOT books, unlike (as was noted) most of the books of Modesitt's "Recluce" series do not stand up as "stand-alones". But...and this, I think, is a significant "but", arguably (my argument?) between LOTR and now ASoIAF (in part from the HBO series) no other "story" (however many books/parts) has advanced the overall popularity and acceptance of epic fantasy. Maybe if there were a "lifetime achievement Hugo" like the Academy Awards...but there isn't.
I don't have a vote this year, although several members of our group/club in Colorado Springs do, but if I did, I would (of course) be certain to read all the nominees and then judge WOT on its merits (which would include its impact upon F&SF).
Alan Heuer 2.0
103. mutantalbinocrocodile
The more I think about this, the more I think that the fundamental problem is the word "novel". "Novel" is not actually just shorthand for "book-length prose fiction in a single volume". It's a genre with conventions of 18th and 19th century origin, many of whose conventions are explicitly rejected by the speculative fiction tradition. Perhaps the best way to resolve this would be to consider striking it from the category as excessively tendentious. Yes, "Best Long Format Fiction" (with some kind of sub-rule about number of words) is less catchy, but it doesn't fall into the genre traps that keep speculative fiction in the ghetto in the first place.

I wouldn't even want to specify "Best Long Format Prose Fiction". On the off chance that in the next 20 years someone writes an extraordinary epic poem, I want to read it.

P.S. Oh, thank goodness, no more numerical Captcha for a while!!
Colin Bell
104. SchuylerH
@103: That's an interesting idea: didn't H. G. Wells view his SF books as "scientific romances" rather than novels? As for length, at present, the Hugo defines a novel as upwards of 40,000 words. (I will additionally note that Wikipedia's "List of longest novels" is rather interesting). Regarding epic poetry, have you ever read Aniara?
Alan Heuer 2.0
105. mutantalbinocrocodile
@104, precisely my point. "Romance" or "romantic epic" (in the pre-modern sense of those genres) does seem to be the Western category on which speculative fiction has historically drawn most heavily.

Have Googled Aniara. Do you have a recommendation on which translation is preferable? I always like to be a little cautious about good translators for works not written in English (I'm only just getting around to reading Solaris for that reason).
Colin Bell
106. SchuylerH
@105: With regards Aniara, I would recommend the 1999 Story Line Press translation if you can find it (it's available to borrow if you have an Open Library account). Please be aware that the pre-1991 English translations are not complete. (I can also say that the 2012 translation of Roadside Picnic is the best yet, if you want to give that a go)

The distinction between a novel and a romance is subtle but, I think, significant in this circumstance. I shall have to start mentally substituting the latter for the former.
Colin Bell
107. SchuylerH
Hugo update: According to Charles Stross, Orbit have decided against giving free ebooks to Hugo voters and hence there will be "substantial extracts" rather than full copies of Parasite, Neptune's Brood and Ancillary Justice in the packet.
Alan Heuer 2.0
108. Alan Heuer 2.0
@107: SchuylerH:

That is dismaying. I would encourage everyone who's thinking of voting in the Best Novel category to buy the books (or check them out of a library, or whatever). Don't let the authors be punished for the publisher's decision.

I've already bought them. I've been voting since long before there were these new-fangled Hugo Packets, and I never wait around for the Hugo Packets to show up. For that matter, I've already acquired all of the nominated short fiction, too.
Colin Bell
109. SchuylerH
@108: Agreed (I already have the novels I'm interested in). I can't see how the voter is expected to make an informed decision on the basis of an extract.
Scott Silver
110. hihosilver28
I was disappointed with Orbit's decision. Not that I feel I was entitled (well...maybe a little bit entitled), but more with how this would change the discussion about the nominees. I always thought of the packet like the Academy does every Oscar season by sending screeners to all the voters. Just trying to get their movies more notice.

Granted, Orbit has 3 of the 5, but I still think it's a false positive for them to assume that all the Hugo packets are lost sales. I am using the library for all of mine, so it wouldn't have been an issue anyways, and many people on the blogs I've seen have already bought the books. It feels like this will just come back around to bite them as a publisher, even if it doesn't affect the voting this year. Although I don't see how it won't affect it in some way.
Alan Heuer 2.0
111. Alan Heuer 2.0
I actually think it would be better if the novel excerpts were left out of the Hugo Packet. Including them just encourages voters to rank-order the nominees without reading them completely.
Colin Bell
112. SchuylerH
PSA: The packet's out, such as it is...
Colin Bell
113. SchuylerH
More retro thoughts:

Novelette: "Dead Knowledge" is a capable Don Stuart story and was included in Who Goes There? but I think that the earlier "Twilight" and "Night" were superior.

"Hollywood on the Moon" is part of Kuttner's Tony Quade series. It's one of his better pre-collaboration stories and there's an early sign of the screwball comedy focus of the Gallagher stories but it seems minor.

I think "Pigeons from Hell" has a good chance of winning. Despite the silly title, it's a strong Howard standalone horror story whose fans include Stephen King.

"Rule 18" is minor, early Simak: with a few of exceptions like "Project Mastodon", "The Big Front Yard" and the City stories, Simak's novels are more important than the shorter fiction. It's not hugely interesting of itself (it's about an Earth v Mars football game) and it's mainly notable for inspiring a young Isaac Asimov.

C. L. Moore's 30's work is very important, with fans including Brackett and Heinlein. However, by itself, "Werewoman" doesn't merit a Hugo. Future Retro Hugos should go to the superior "Shambleau" and "Black God's Kiss".

Short fiction: A bit disappointing really. The Bradbury and "Faithful" are minor first stories while the Clarke, for a change, is a minor third story. "Hyperpilosity" is also an early story but often anthologised and seems to be a forerunner of Campbell's SF while "Helen O'Loy" has remained popular for some unfathomable reason. I can't call between these two, though there's always a chance that Clarke or Bradbury fans might swing the vote in the other direction.

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