As you all know by now, the Hugo Awards were presented Saturday, and No Award dominated most of the categories. Rather than let any outsiders win, they burned their village in order to “save it”. And they did so while cheering, gloating, and generally being snide exclusive assholes about it. This year’s awards have an asterisk next to them. It was all about politics rather than the quality of the work. Even the pre-award show was a totally biased joke. In addition they changed the voting rules to make their archaic rules system even more convoluted in order to keep out future barbarian hordes. They gave as many No Awards this time as in the entire history of the awards.
So like I said yesterday… See? I told you so.
People have asked me if I’m disappointed in the results. Yes. But maybe not in the way you might expect. I’ll talk about the slap in the face to specific nominees in a minute, but I can’t say I’m surprised by what happened, when it was just an extreme example of what I predicted would happen three years ago when I started all this.
I said the Hugos no longer represented all of Fandom, instead they only represents tiny, insular, politically motivated cliques taking turns giving their friends awards. If you wanted to be considered, you needed to belong to, or suck up to those voting cliques. I was called a liar.
I said that most of the voters cared far more about the author’s identity and politics than they did the quality of the work, and in fact, the quality of the work would be completely ignored if the creator had the wrong politics. I was called a liar.
I said that if somebody with the wrong politics got a nomination, they would be actively campaigned against, slandered, and attacked, not for the quality of their work, but because of politics. I was called a liar.
That’s how the Sad Puppies campaign started. You can see the results. They freaked out and did what I said they would do. This year others took over, in the hopes of getting worthy, quality works nominated who would normally be ignored. It got worse. They freaked out so much that even I was surprised.
Each year it got a little bigger, and the resulting backlash got a little louder and nastier, culminating in this year’s continual international media slander campaign. Most of the media latched onto a narrative about the campaign being sexist white males trying to keep women and minorities out of publishing. That narrative is so ridiculous that a few minutes of cursory research shows that if that was our secret goal, then we must be really bad at it, considering not just who we nominated, but who our organizers and supporters are, but hey… Like I said, it is all about politics, and if it isn’t, they’re going to make it that way. You repeat a lie often enough, and people will believe it.
It isn’t about truth. It is about turf.
We saw all sorts of arguments this year. They’d nitpick everything they could to make us the evil outsiders. When it was just me, they made it all about me. When it was bigger than just me, they spread the love (though I still got labeled as a sexist, racist, homophobic, woman hating, wife beater with zero evidence which is always a treat) and went after our supporters. People who agreed with us were misogynists and our female supporters became tokens.
There was lots of virtue signaling. They represented purity and tradition, basically all goodness, and since they used up all the goodness, ergo we could only be motivated by greed, spite, and hate. Since most of us never said anything outlandish or offensive, they picked the most controversial figure they could from an allied movement, and ascribed everything they’ve ever said about him to all of us, and if we failed to denounce sufficiently, said we must be the same. Meanwhile, they don’t have to denounce their assholes, and instead continue to shower praise and awards on literal NAMBLA supporters.
I’ll skip over the boorish behavior from Saturday night, the SJW panic attacks from being triggered at the freebie table, and an editor cursing at probably the meekest, politest author I know, and talk about the actual categories. I’ve only had time to give the numbers a cursory glance, but it looks like you’ve got five to six hundred Sad Puppies, five to six hundred Rabid Puppies, and about 3,000 CHORFs and allied useful idiots, with the remainder being normal fans. This year there was about 1 of us to every 3 of them.
Right off the bat you can look through our nomination numbers from all of the categories and see that the crying about our super evil slate voting was nonsense. The actual numbers between the various Puppy nominees varied wildly, with some Puppy favorites falling just outside of the short list where we can see the same thing. Yeah, I figured that. All of those charges about voting in lockstep? Nope. The only real lockstep slate vote went to No Award.
No Award is for nominees who are not award worthy. Notice that on these nominees they railed against their identities, the philosophies of who liked them, and the politics of how they were nominated, but we seldom if ever heard anything about the quality of their work. Quality of the work had nothing to do with it. The NA crowd can cache it however they want, they’re defending tradition, this is their thing, it is special to them, they’re TRUEFAN, they’ve been attending since the ‘70s, we’re outsiders, we upset them, how dare we! So on and so forth, but ultimately all those NA categories came down to politics over quality.
Let’s look at a few of our record five No Award categories. This is where we get to the part where I’m actually disappointed. I knew there were a lot of biased assholes in fandom, but I was surprised at the depths they’d sink.
Kary English is a damned fine writer. I don’t even know what her politics are. We picked her as one of our nominees because she wrote a really solid story. She got 874 votes for best short story. I believe that is one of the highest number of votes for a short story in Hugo history. No Award got 3,000.
That’s asinine. Honestly compare Totaled to some of the short stories that they had no problem with before… That vote had nothing to do with quality, and everything to do with turf. You assholes are celebrating punishing her, and you justify it because you don’t like people like me.
But that’s not the category that is really absurd. Let’s look at Best Editor, Long Form.
Now, a little background on Best Editor, and why there is a Long and Short form. It used to be just Best Editor, only it usually went to short fiction magazine editors. Until Patrick Nielsen Hayden complained one year that he’d edited most of Best Novel nominees (well, that’s a shock) and he didn’t ever get to be Best Editor, so they made a category for him to win every other year (literally).
But there are no cliques or bias!
Editor Toni Weisskopf is a professional’s professional. She has run one of the main sci-fi publishing houses for a decade. She has edited hundreds of books. She has discovered, taught, and nurtured a huge stable of authors, many of whom are extremely popular bestsellers. You will often hear authors complain about their editors and their publishers, but you’re pretty hard pressed to find anyone who has written for her who has anything but glowing praise for Toni.
Yet before Sad Puppies came along, Toni had never received a Hugo nomination. Zero. The above mentioned Patrick Nielsen Hayden has 8. Toni’s problem was that she just didn’t care and she didn’t play the WorldCon politics. Her only concern was making the fans happy. She publishes any author who can do that, regardless of their politics. She’s always felt that the real awards were in the royalty checks. Watching her get ignored was one of the things that spurred me into starting Sad Puppies. If anybody deserved the Hugo, it was her.
This year Toni got a whopping 1,216 first place votes for Best Editor. That isn’t just a record. That is FOUR TIMES higher than the previous record. Shelia Gilbert came in next with an amazing 754. I believe that Toni is such a class act that beforehand she even said she thought Shelia Gilbert deserved to win. Fans love Toni.
Logically you would think that she would be award worthy, since the only Baen books to be nominated for a Hugo prior to Sad Puppies were edited by her (Bujold) and none of those were No Awarded. Last year she had the most first place votes, and came in second only after the weird Australian Rules voting kicked in (don’t worry everybody, they just voted to make the system even more complicated), so she was apparently award worthy last year.
Toni Weisskopf has been part of organized Fandom (capital F) since she was a little kid, so all that bloviating about how Fandom is precious, and sacred, and your special home since the ‘70s which you need to keep as a safe space free of barbarians, blah, blah, blah, yeah, that applies to Toni just as much as it does to you CHORFs. You know how you guys paid back her lifetime of involvement in Fandom?
By giving 2,496 votes to No Award.
So what changed, WorldCon? We both know the answer. It was more important that you send a message to the outsiders than it was to honor someone who was truly deserving, and that message was This is ours, keep out. That’s why I’m disappointed. I wanted the mask to come off and for the world to see how the sausage was really made, but even I was a little surprised by just how vile you are.
Same thing with Editor, short form. Mike Resnick has the wrong politics, but he makes up for it by being a living legend, and a major part of fandom for decades. He’s super involved and has helped launch more careers than anyone can count. When they went through and broke down Hugo winners by politics over the last couple of decades, he was one of the few who was good enough and famous to still win. He should’ve won this year, big time. But nope. Brad Torgersen endorsed him. Send the message. Same category, Jennifer Brozek, have zero idea what she believes about anything, despite working on stuff that was worthy before, No Award, because Larry Correia endorsed due to her quality work on Shattered Shields. Send the message.
Resnick and Weisskopf losing is particularly galling. CHORFs don’t care about tradition. You have no honor. You only care about protecting your turf. You’re inclusive and welcoming, provided the newcomers kiss your ass and don’t get uppity. And old timers? Heaven forbid somebody with badthink endorses them, because then they either have to debase themselves and beg for mercy, or you’ll burn them too. I talked about how this poisonous culture scares many writers into self-censoring before, and you gave them a great example too. Stay in the lines or else.
Oh, and all that bullshit you spew about fighting for diversity? Everyone knows that is a smokescreen. You talk about diversity, but simultaneously had no problem putting No Award over award nominated females because they were nominated by fans you declared to be sexist. Wait… So let me see if I’ve got this straight, you denied deserving women like Toni, Cedar, Kary, Jennifer, Shelia, and Amanda, just to send a message, but we’re the bad guys? I don’t think so. Or as one of our female nominees said, this Puppy has been muzzled. http://cedarwrites.com/this-puppy-has-been-muzzled/
So who really won the Hugos this year? It was 3 to 1 in votes against the two Puppy factions, so they beat us in numbers big time. I’m not going to try to spin that (hell, after the media blitz about how you noble Fans were bravely holding off an invasion of hateful white males hatemongers of hate, I’m surprised that’s all you got) they own Worldcon. At least now they finally admit that. For the Sad Puppies, I don’t know what they’re planning to do next. I’m not in charge. Kate Paulk is. Sarah was supposed to be in charge this year but she fell ill. I wanted to wash my hands of this thing last year and Brad asked me to come back. Over three years the Puppy numbers went from a handful, to hundreds, to over a thousand. The question now is do we want to keep throwing money at a bunch of ungrateful bastards who keep changing the rules to forbid us, or change tactics. Either way, not my call, not my problem. I’m sick of this crap.
No Award is the big winner. Only time will tell, but for FANDOM and the CHORFs I think you’ve got yourself a pyrrhic victory. So many of you don’t seem to realize that this isn’t just about the awards, and culture wars are a spectator sport. WorldCon was shrinking and greying, and now you can rejoice as it goes back to the comfy way you like it. You want to know why? Read this.
“Attending the Hugo Awards from the perspective of a 12 and 14 year old.”
I took my kids to WorldCon to expose them to Fandom and I’ve consciously shielded them from any of the politics of the kerfuffle associated with the literary “sides” that were in play.
When we attended, we had good seats and they were excited to see if some of their choices would make it.
Let’s just say that my boys ended up being exposed to some of their categories being utterly eradicated from eligibility due to this thing that I’d shielded them from.
They couldn’t understand why their short story choice evaporated into something called “NO AWARD.”
As I briefly explained, the audience was cheering because of that decision and the MC made a point of saying that cheering was appropriate and boos were not.
My kids were shocked.
Shocked not by not winning but by having an entire category’s rug being pulled out from under it and then having all the adults (many of which were old enough to be their grandparents) cheering for something my kids looked at as an unfair tragedy.
I’ll admit to having feared this outcome – yet this was my children’s introduction to Fandom.
We are driving home and they are of the opinion that they aren’t particularly interested in this “Fandom” thing.
I find that a great shame – and I blame not the people who established the ballots to vote for (for my kids enjoyed a great deal of what they read on the ballots), but as my kids noted – they blame the ones who made them feel “like the rug was pulled out from under me.”
I’d offered Fandom my boys – my boys now reject them.
And yes, the picture below is just before us walking to the Hugo ceremonies. They’re excited about it all. I just find it a pity that they didn’t feel anything other than bewilderment and bitterness toward the people in the auditorium after the ceremonies.
That’s the future you elitist exclusive snobs want. Sasquan talked about their record numbers, and record attendance, record supporting memberships, record votes (not to mention record money), but then to commemorate it, you gave them an asterisk for violating your secret gentlemen’s agreements, and told them their kind isn’t welcome in Trufandom. Thinking about the asterisk though, didn’t any of you special snowflakes watch Community? None of my people got any awards, so it isn’t our flag that’s an anus. But fly your anus high, WorldCon, because those two kids will probably be published authors themselves, having fun with other Wrongfans at other cons by the time Gerrold finishes the next Chtorr book.
The real winner this year was Vox Day and the Rabid Puppies. Yep. You CHORFing idiots don’t seem to realize that Brad, Sarah, and I were the reasonable ones who spent most of the summer talking Vox out of having his people No Award the whole thing to burn it down, but then you did it for him. He got the best of both worlds. Oh, but now you’re going to say that Three Body Problem won, and that’s a victory for diversity! You poor deluded fools… That was Vox’s pick for best novel. That’s the one most of the Rabid Puppies voted for too.
Here’s something for you crowing imbeciles to think through, the only reason Vox didn’t have Three Body Problem on his nomination slate was that he read it a month too late. If he’d read it sooner, it would have been an RP nomination… AND THEN YOU WOULD HAVE NO AWARDED IT.
And if that doesn’t prove my original point about this fucked up system being more about politics than the quality of the work, I don’t know what will. One of the only two fiction works that actually received an award this year would have been a Rabid Puppy nominee except for timing, and you would’ve No Awarded the winner just to send your little message.
The outrage this summer is all about politics and protecting turf. Look at the nomination numbers. There is a significant correlation between amount of butt hurt and who was supposed to have made it.
Other than the Puppy noms, look through all the supporting categories and look how tiny their numbers are. Yeah, the Puppies crushed them and locked them out, but not through malicious slate voting. It doesn’t take a lockstep slate to beat a system that is so pathetic a couple dozen friends can swing it.
The cliques are small and inbred. Don’t believe me, think about who our biggest haters are, and then scroll through the list and see who didn’t get Hugo nominations because my side showed up for once. Check out Fan Writer. Look at the list of who would’ve made it if it hadn’t been for us. Funny. Most of those names look familiar, usually because they’re ranting about sexist/racist hate boogeymen.
Same thing with Best Related Work and the other little categories. No wonder Hines has been on the warpath. We interrupted his destiny. As GRRM said, he’s served his time, damn it! Hell, if we’d not shown up culture warrior Anita Sarkeesian would have been a nominee, and you say that we’re the ones who involved GamerGate? And for all of Empress Theresa’s bloviating about us keeping off the 2nd volume of the Heinlein dialogs, that’s a smoke screen because it wouldn’t have made it anyway. Oh, and there’s Glyer 45 Hugos. No wonder he’s pissed. If it hadn’t been for Puppies his title would be Glyer 46 Hugos. Sheesh. Scroll down that list. Lots of familiar names with pathetically small vote counts that would’ve otherwise made it, but there are no entrenched cliques. Uh huh.
Anyways, I’m glad it’s over. I can’t wait to see what new exciting ways they come up with to slander anyone who disagrees with them next year.