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Drafting my Hugo

9 Comments

This is in the nature of a first pass through my ballots for the 2014 Hugo Awards, a work in progress. My reading is not yet complete for the various fiction categories, so I hope to have five choices for each of them by the end of March. As for the other categories, read on…

novel
1 A Tale for the Time Being, Ruth Ozeki (Canongate)
2 Empty Space: A Haunting, M John Harrison (Night Shade Books)
3 Ancillary Justice, Ann Leckie (Orbit)
4
5

Eligible books I have yet to read which might take up those last two slots: Life After Life, Kate Atkinson; The Shining Girls, Lauren Beukes; What Lot’s Wife Saw, Ioanna Bourazopoulou; Shaman, Kim Stanley Robinson; Martian Sands, Lavie Tidhar; On the Steel Breeze, Alastair Reynolds; The Disestablishment of Paradise, Phillip Mann; and The Machine, James Smythe.

Eligible books I have read which won’t be appearing on my ballot: Proxima, Stephen Baxter; Evening’s Empires, Paul McAuley; The Violent Century, Lavie Tidhar; Seoul Survivors, Naomi Foyle; and Swords of Good Men, Snorri Kristjansson.

novella
1 The Eye With Which The Universe Beholds Itself, Ian Sales (Whippleshield Books)
2 Then Will The Great Ocean Wash Deep Above, Ian Sales (Whippleshield Books)
3
4
5

It has been brought to my attention that I’m allowed to nominate my own fiction – which is not allowed for the BSFA Award – so I thought, why the hell not? Both of my novellas were published in 2013 (January and November, respectively), and it’s not like hundreds of other people will nominate them. Plus, I’m also the publisher of said novellas, which arguably makes it all a bit blurry anyway. The reason the same old names always appear in this category is not because they write the best novellas every year but because most Hugo voters can’t be arsed to read around. If putting my novellas on my ballot encourages them to look beyond Asimov’s, Analog and F&SF, then all to the good. Meanwhile, I shall be reading around, checking out novellas such as this one (ta to Abigail Nussbaum for pointing me at it).

novelette
1 no award

I think the category needs to be dropped, so I’m not going to nominate anything in it.

short story
1 ‘The Incurable Irony of the Man Who Rode the Rocket Sled’, Ian Sales (The Orphan)
2 ‘Selkie Stories are for Losers’, Sofia Samatar (Strange Horizons)
3 ‘Golden Apple’, Sophia McDougall (The Lowest Heaven)
4 ‘A Bridge of Words’, Dinesh Rao (We See a Different Frontier)
5

I’ll probably drop my own story from this ballot – I mean, I think it’s good, of course I do; but maybe that’s pushing it a bit. Although, again, if it prompts Hugo voters to read around a little… I’m still looking for a story to fill one, possibly two, slots.

related work
1 Red Doc>, Anne Carson

It occurred to me that Red Doc> is a poem not a novel, and so would better suit this category. I’m still thinking about other – perhaps non-fiction – works I might nominate.

graphic story
1 no award

I have no idea what to nominate and no real interest in finding out.

dramatic presentation (short)
1 no award

I think the category should be dropped. But if I were going to nominate something, it would probably be ‘The Five-ish Doctors Reboot’ (BBC).

dramatic presentation (long)
1 no award

Another category I think should be dropped. But if I were going to nominate something, it would probably be season one of Orphan Black.

editor (long form)
1 no award

Awards should go to works, not people.

editor (short form)
1 no award

Awards should go to works, not people.

professional artist
1 no award

Awards should go to works, not people.

semiprozine
1 Interzone
2 Strange Horizons
3 Vector
4 no award

The category definition is farcical, but these are the genre magazines I read regularly.

fanzine
1 SF Mistressworks
2 Pornokitsch
3 Nerds of a Feather
4 Sibilant Fricative
5 Good Show Sir

I’ve no real interest in fanzines per se, but I’m nominating five blogs/web sites here in order to point out that no one gives a shit about paper fanzines anymore and it’s long past time the Hugo Awards realised that.

fancast
1 no award

I don’t listen to podcasts.

fan writer
1 Liz Bourke
2 Jonathan McCalmont
3 Abigail Nussbaum
4 Jared Shurin
5 Nina Allan

Awards should go to works, not people – but I’m nominating five people here as a political act.

fan artist
1 no award

Awards should go to works, not people.

So there you have it. My thoughts on my ballot so far. I shall continue reading, and nearer the date I’ll post what my actual final ballot will be.

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9 thoughts on “Drafting my Hugo

  1. Thanks for the recommendations. On my ballot there will be some of the works you have mentioned (including some of your own works and Ancillary Justice, for instance). I will also try and read Carmen Maria Machado’s novella. Thanks for the heads up about that one.

    If you accept recommendations, there are several short stories that I think are outstanding but have not received enough attention. For instance, “Melt With You” by Emily C. Skaftun (http://clarkesworldmagazine.com/skaftun_04_13/) and “Trixie and the Pandas of Dread” by Eugie Foster (http://www.apex-magazine.com/trixie-and-the-pandas-of-dread/).

    Also, The Wages of Humanity by Liu Cixin is an amazing novella. It will be on my ballot, for sure.

    Finally, I’d dare to say that the stories included in Terra Nova (http://www.amazon.com/Terra-Nova-Anthology-Contemporary-Spanish/dp/8494127489) are not only very good but also elegible in different categories (disclaimer: I’m part of the team of these anthologies. And I can provide digital review copies, btw). Sorry for the shameless plug.

  2. It has been brought to my attention that I’m allowed to nominate my own fiction – which is not allowed for the BSFA Award – so I thought, why the hell not?

    You are completely justified in doing so, Ian.

  3. For graphic I suggest you look at saga, it’s one of the best and is science fictional.

  4. Pingback: My final Hugo ballot | It Doesn't Have To Be Right...

  5. Pingback: Hugo Nominations – Best Novella, Best Novelette & Best Short Story | Everything Is Nice

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