The Ballad of Lost C’Nine 5/13

aka Think Blue, Bark Two

Brad R. Torgersen, John C. Wright, T.C. McCarthy, Michael Senft, Henry Dampier, Lis Carey, Chris Gerrib, Alexandra Erin, Font Folly and Protest Manager are the featured participants in today’s roundup. (Title credit belongs to File 770 contributing editors of the day Morris Keesan and Craig R.)

Brad R. Torgersen

“Musings, not necessarily sorted” – May 13

Because ultimately this isn’t even about Sad Puppies, or what we said, or did not say, or what we did, or did not do.

This is about the Hugo award, and Worldcon, and decades of seeping stagnation, and the ossification of the mindset of the so-called “keepers” of the field’s self-proclaimed “most prestigious award.” An award that seems to too often deliberately avoid what’s actually happening in the marketplace, has become the personal toy of a self-selected crop of individuals who are happy to play at being large fish in small fishbowls, and does itself and its legacy a disservice by catering to taste-makers and taste-shapers. Both for reasons related to art, and for reasons related to politics. As I said above, the number of people in this group is finite. The actual fans (small f) are legion.

Sad Puppies 3 is an effort to bring fans (small f) to the table. No matter how much people have bashed it, lied about it, or tried to paint it as something it’s not, Sad Puppies 3 is “open source” and egalitarian. We asked for suggestions in the run-up to the formation of the slate, and we encouraged everyone to buy, read, and participate with an open mind. No expectations. No tests. No rules. We demanded nothing. We threatened nothing.


John C. Wright

“On the Unwritten Code” – May 13

A meme currently circulating among the Social Justice Warriors in their relentless attempts to made poor, poor big-eyed puppies sad with their heaping awards upon talent-free uberleftist message fiction is that Larry Correia and Brad Torgersen and Vox Day, merely by asking fans to read and nominate worthy works, have violated the strict and scrupulously observed unwritten code of gentlemen forbidding the crassness of asking for votes in public.

Asking for votes in private, or if you are a Politically Correct leftist in good standing, of course, provokes no furor, as it is evidently not a violation.

I call it a meme because it is a thoughtless and absurd white noise of words, a self replicating sentence phrase that means nothing and says nothing. It is an accusation leveled because the accusers have run out of other, more credible, accusations, and they are not well behaved enough to shut their mouths with dignity after their case has been argued and lost.



Michael Senft on Relentless Reading (And Writing About It!)

“Marie Brennan and Mary Robinette Kowal talk fantastic women throughout history” – May 13

We also touched briefly on the Hugo controversy, with both authors weighing in, although Mary understandably was reticent to discuss Puppygate. Here are some excerpts from the interview.

Brennan: I sincerely hope that slates will not become the wave of the future, because I find them utterly antithetical to the entire spirit of the Hugos. It is one thing to say “here’s what I published last year” (I’m grateful for that one, honestly, because it reminds me of when things came out, and which categories they fit into, and oh hey I meant to read that story); that doesn’t bother me. Neither does people posting to say “here’s stuff I think is Hugo-worthy” — that’s just fannishness at work. But a named campaign, stretching across multiple years, whose public rhetoric focuses less on the awesomeness of the stories and more on the political message they will send to the “other side”? I’m not in favor. And that would be true even if the slate in question were filled with stories I had already enjoyed.

Kowal: I can’t actually comment on this much, because I decided to try to do something to bridge the gap between the multiple groups of fans and am crowdsourcing a set of supporting memberships for WorldCon. So I’m trying to stay neutral to avoid swaying votes. Which means that I’m declining any Hugo nominations next year (since a supporting membership this year means you can vote next year) and attempting to not express opinions about any of the nominees.

I will say that I’m seeing a lot of people, all around, who are feeling alienated. I think everyone needs to do a better job of listening.

(The principal text of the interview is online at


Font Folly

“The stories we have to tell” – May 13

“Moreover, men literally have no clue how much they talk. When Spencer asked students to evaluate their perception of who talked more in a given discussion, women were pretty accurate; but men perceived the discussion as being “equal” when women talked only 15% of the time, and the discussion as being dominated by women if they talked only 30% of the time.”

My conclusion: men think women talk too much because they think women should be silent.

This perception problem isn’t limited to gender issues. Any person in a position of power or privilege thinks that any time someone outside their group talks or is recognized more than a tiny fraction of the time that the others are dominating the situation…..

  • And yes, it’s part of the reason that someone like Larry Correia and his cohorts—Brad Torgerson, Theodore Beale (aka Vox Day), and John C. Wright—can see more than one or two women or people of color nominated in a single category for the Hugo Awards and start screaming that science fiction is being taken away from people like them.


Henry Dampier

“About Progressive Situational Dominance” – May 13

The point of this is to argue that it’s a bad idea to challenge progressives in areas where they have institutional control. You could counter by using the recent example of right-wingers crashing the Hugo Awards, but ultimately, what that was good for was just demoralizing fringe progressives while heartening some right-wing genre fiction fans. The official science fiction author’s groups are, for the most part, still solidly progressive, and will continue to be so. Creating alternative institutions is more important and effective than trying to take over progressive institutions which are only nominally neutral.

The more profound impact on progressive institutions has come from the re-emergence of self publishing and small publishing enabled by Amazon and its eBook platform — a mostly neutral bookstore which has contributed much to the weakening of the progressive critical establishment, which they complain about endlessly. When the opposition complains about something, it’s wonderful, because they’re telling you where the pain is, and if they’re telling you where the pain is, then that’s where you should apply more pressure to cause more of it.

It’s also important to understand that, when making moral arguments in a progressive country, where most people believe in most of the tenets of progressivism, that you have the low ground when making such arguments. It’s futile to criticize progressives on moral grounds which they don’t accept, and which the majority of Westerners tend not to accept. You have to shore up the alternative moral institutions to provide those opposing sources of authority in order to create a self-sustaining resistance


Lis Carey on Lis Carey’s Library

“Championship B’Tok, by Edward M. Lerner” – May 13

Paragraph by paragraph, this story is decently written. Character development hovers in the vicinity of competent. The plot, unfortunately, wanders all over the place, and doesn’t go anywhere really interesting. It’s possible this is a piece of a larger whole, and I can easily conjecture a larger whole in which this piece would make more sense, and being doing some important work for the larger story. Sadly, that is in no way indicated, and it’s nominated as a novelette.


Chris Gerrib on Heroines of Fantasy

“Wednesday Review: A Sword Into Darkness” – May 13

There’s an ongoing debate in Science Fiction at the moment.  One very loud faction says people are abandoning SF because all our stories are “social justice novels” and we’re handing out awards not for good work but to hit a racial / ethnic / gender checklist.  Since I vote on one of the awards (the Hugos) I found that argument rather unconvincing.  One of the gentlemen on the other side, I discovered, had penned an SF novel entitled A Sword Into Darkness [by Thomas A. Mays]. The ebook price was right, so I bought it and read it. Overall, it’s a pretty good book – I’d give it three stars.


Sad Puppies

“Celebrating What Is Best In Science Fiction: Foundation” – May 12

Over the past month we here in the Sad Puppies Revolutionary Vanguard Party Ministry of Truth have received a number of questions about which classic works of SF do and don’t exemplify the goals of the Party. While our cohort John Z. Upjohn has done a fantastic job identifying SJW-infused works, we do not wish to present ourselves as wholly negative, so today we’re going to talk about one of the all time great works of SF, a classic of yesteryear which could never win a Hugo today. Yes, Isaac Asimov’s Foundation.


Alexandra Erin on Blue Author Is About To Write

“Sad Puppies Review Books: IF YOU GIVE A MOUSE A COOKIE” – May 13


After a few hours of study, it seemed obvious to me that there must be an agenda at work, and as soon as I knew there was an agenda I could see it everywhere. It’s so easy to see agendas I’m surprised more people don’t do it.

The reason that SJWs have arranged for this hollow mockery of a book to be praised by all quarters is that it is basically a modest proposal for welfare benefits to immigrants. It starts by asking you the reader to imagine a mouse just shows up on your door unannounced and says he’s hungry, and then suggesting that you feed him. The words like “if” and “might” make this sound so polite, so reasonable. The rhythm of the book is I believe intended to lull the reader into a daze where you will nod along. “Makes sense,” you will say to yourself. “If a bunch of hungry vermin want to invade my home, why shouldn’t I give them the food off my table?”



And I don’t know whether I’m emotionally ready for this, but it is rather stfnal….


551 thoughts on “The Ballad of Lost C’Nine 5/13

  1. I think the problem now with the things Torgerson and Wright have written is the huge disconnect between what the Puppies say they want to be nominated and what they actually nominated. They say they wanted great adventure stories but nominated snoozers like “Flow.” They say they want quality writers recognized but nominated amateurish works like “On A Spiritual Plain.” They say they don’t want political messaging and nominate “Transhuman and Subhuman: Essays on Science Fiction and Awful Truth.” They hated “If You Were a Dinosaur My Love” for not being SFF but nominated “The Parliament of Beasts and Birds” which is clearly a religious allegory and not speculative fiction.

    The only common denominator in what was nominated isn’t quality, or excitement, or freedom from ideology, it is mostly that they are friends of the movement. That’s a huge problem with their credibility and makes all of their arguments about how they were sticking up for other voices or just wanted honestly good works nominated rings hollow. Maybe they’ll do a better job of connecting their rhetoric to their nominations next year.

  2. Lest anyone give too much weight to Mr. Torgersen and Mr. Wright’s protestations of good intentions, let me quote some of their and their friends’ earlier words:

    Larry Correia: “I fully admit, and am on record about starting this out of spite.”

    Daddy Warpig: “Yo! #GamerGate! There’s a chance to humble SJW in Sci-Fi, too! Check it:… Do your bit to fight the Jerk-iarchy!”

    Daddy Warpig: “#GamerGate! Do the right thing… Hurt SocJus… Make puppies smile!…”

    Hosted on John C. Wright’s blog, dated January 13, 2015: “Here is why you might want to consider doing so even if the idea of spending $40 to poke a sharp stick in the collective eyes of the SJWs who are doing their level best to destroy the science fiction and fantasy literature you love for the next two years isn’t enough in its own right.

    1. Hugo Awards are worth around $13,000 to an SJW, according to one Kameron Hurley. For a fraction of one percent of that, you can deny multiple SJWs their ability to commit Pink SF and force them to spend their time delivering pizzas instead. …”

    Sarah Hoyt (speaking of what the Sad Puppies should do to “SJWs”): “I suggest we kick them while they’re down and make them fight for the awards and prestige they crave. Also, that we point at them and make duck noises.”

  3. So according to Brad Torgenson, “this is about decades of seeping stagnation”. Which is kind of shocking to me, because the Puppies have been constantly arguing that their campaign is a restoration of “older” sci-fi tastes, as they keep telling us that “old school” science fiction has been pushed out of the awards arena. I . . . can only conclude that Brad Torgenson does not actually know the definition of the word “stagnation”. Hint: if you repeatedly argue that there’s been too much change, you don’t get to use the word “stagnation”.

    Also according to Brad Torgenson, the Sad Puppies campaign was “open source and egalitarian” because they “asked for suggestions in the run up to the formation of the slate”. Um, Brad? You ignored practically all those suggestions in the formation of the actual slate. People know this. You aren’t fooling anybody. You don’t get to call something “egalitarian” and “open source” just because you COULD have made it those things, yet chose not to!

    Someone needs to start a campaign to purchase poor Brad Torgenson a dictionary. This is just sad.

  4. Best post titles since this whole thing started. Well done, Morris Keesan and Craig R.

  5. Con Chair: What happen?
    SMOF: Somebody set up us the tail.
    Operator: We get spoor.
    Con Chair: What!
    SMOFr: Main piddle turn on.
    Con Chair: It’s You!!
    Dogs: How are you, fandom!! All your Hugo are belong to us. You are on the way to SJWdom.
    Con Chair: What you say!!
    Dogs: You have no chance to nominate make your time. Ha Ha Ha Ha ….
    SMOF: Con Chair!!
    Con Chair: Take off every “Noah”!! You know what you doing. Move “Noah”. For great justice.

  6. Also, did Torgersen *ever* provide a link to those reviews he claims he saw that said the puppy nominations were “Hugo quality”? The ones written by anti-puppy reviewers?

  7. Henry Dampier: “Amazon and its eBook platform — a mostly neutral bookstore which has contributed much to the weakening of the progressive critical establishment, which they complain about endlessly.”

    And here I thought that the biggest concern of most American progressives was separating big business from campaign finance so that our politicians aren’t quite so corrupt. No, apparently we endlessly complain that liberal literary critics can’t dictate what people read anymore because of Amazon.

    Wait, what?

  8. @Rick Moen: The Hugo has been kidnapped by SJWs.

    Are you a Sad enough Puppy to rescue the Hugo?

    I’ve posted it before, but it still makes me smile.

  9. @Rick – oh well done sir.

    The Torgersen article is a great example of someone being unable to see what’s right in front of their face so long as their livelihood depends on them not seeing it.

    “Especially when the shake-up was conducted 100% in the open, democratically, using a democratic process. There was nothing secret being done. Nothing underhanded.”

    Nope. Works that were never even nominated in the open thread (ie, Juliette Wade’s) made it to your slate. If it was open, where did they come from? Works without *any* recommendations at all (ie the KJA novel) made it onto the slate. If democratic, where did the votes come from? (tally of recommendations: )

    “SP3 pointedly criticized affirmative action”

    So who got on due to affirmative action, and what is Torgersen basing this on?

  10. delurking on May 13, 2015 at 6:23 pm said:
    Also, did Torgersen *ever* provide a link to those reviews he claims he saw that said the puppy nominations were “Hugo quality”? The ones written by anti-puppy reviewers?

    Torgersen seems to be taking a page from Beale about making weaselly statements that seem to be saying one thing, but if you parse the grammar minutely, turn out to be something else.

    What Torgersen actually said was “I’ve noticed that some people (who were opposed to the Sad Puppies effort) are actually reading the contents of the Hugo final ballot, and are shocked to discover that a) some of the work really is Hugo-worthy”

    Note that he did not say these people are reading the Puppies’ nominations, but rather the “contents of the Hugo final ballot,” and notice that he did not say any of these alleged readers have discovered that the Puppies’ work is “Hugo-worthy.”

    Technically, he has spoken nothing but truth. I too have seen many people not at all happy with the Puppies’ actions who have started reading works on the Hugo ballot and found some of them up to par.

  11. Ha — in other words, we’re shocked to discover than Ancillary Sword and The Goblin Emperor are up to Hugo standards?

    Why would that shock us, exactly?

    What weasels these puppies are.

  12. To be fair, Three Body Problem is up to Hugo standards also.

  13. The Puppy race, to which so many of my readers belong, has been playing at children’s games from the beginning, and will probably do it till the end, which is a nuisance for the few people who grow up.

  14. Egads, that Wright article.

    “In return, I am accused of being a White Supremacist motivated by race-hatred, being a sexist motivated by misogyny, being a homophone (or whatever their make-believe word is) motivated by a psychopathological paranoia, and being a flying purple people eater motivated by aerial aubergine anthropophagy.”

    “As best I can tell, the argument runs that the votes of my readers do not count and their voices must be silenced on the grounds that Vox Day was falsely accused of being a racist by a shameless, contumelious lying harridan-of-color. I confess the logic here is too elliptical, indeed, too non-Euclidean, to follow.”

    “No, my rivals say my fans must be silenced not because of some unwritten code — that is merely one more in a long series of unconvincing and ineffective lies — but because I am a faithful Roman Catholic, who correctly calls sodomy a perversion, and suicide a mortal sin.

    For speaking these simple truths known to all men in public, I am excoriated by the race I jokingly call Morlocks. The name is apt, for these are creatures once human, but who now fatten with victims with lies and feed off their helplessness and ire and pain, and who seek now ever the remotest caves and holes farthest from the hated brightness of the sun.”


  15. “…these are creatures once human, but who now fatten with victims with lies…”

    Well, at least Wright didn’t claim we were possessed by demons this time.

    Sorry! Influenced by demons! I know that’s a BIG, BIG difference!

  16. Well, at least Wright didn’t claim we were possessed by demons this time.

    But he does say his ideological opponents are subhuman. Can’t imagine how he’d be blind to his buddy’s racism.

  17. It was a dark and stormy mutt; the rage fell in torrents, except at occasional intervals, when it was checked by a violent gust of whinge which swept up the streets (for it is in Spokane that our scene lies), rattling along the hotel-ballrooms, and fiercely agitating the skiffy flames of the fans that struggled against the darkness.

  18. “Every conservative household should have at least one copy of Rules For Radicals in order to recognize Saul Alinsky’s tricks. Liberals are obsessed with that guy.”

    Damn. So good.

  19. The most amazing part of the Wright is when he says he previously extended an “olive branch” to the “other side”. For the record, this was his olive branch (he’s linked to it in the daily round up post):

    “Here are my terms: Halt the libels and lies and keep a civil tongue in your mouth, and there will be peace.

    I offer no concessions in return because I have none to offer.

    The rest of the olive branch is as conciliatory.

  20. Keesan’s Title is …hummm.. in my opinion, worthy of a Hugo in itself.

    But the Puppies have entirely lost me. I started reading Science Fiction back in the 1940s, in my early teens, precisely _because_ almost all s-f writers were Social Justice Warriors (who also wrote pretty good Adventure Stories and came up with a lot of Interesting Ideas). Somewhere in the late ’50s so much sf was published that I could no longer read _all_ of it, but I managed to get a lot in until… oh… sometime in the 80s, when it got to seem too much same-same. But hey, the Puppies assertion that they’re trying to return to Old-Time sf, and their means for doing so by Slate Voting (directly contrary to the individualistic approach I’ve almost always seen since c. 1949) are things I find totally ridiculous.

  21. More hits from “Transhuman and Subhuman”

    From the summary:

    “TRANSHUMAN AND SUBHUMAN is a collection of brilliant and thought-provoking essays by the science fiction master John C. Wright. In the sixteen essays that make up the collection, Wright addresses a wide spectrum of ideas. He considers the darker possibilities of transhumanism, provides a professorial lesson on the mechanics of writing fiction, explains the noble purpose underlying science fiction, and shows how the genre’s obsession with strong female characters is nothing less than an attack on human nature.”

    “and shows how the genre’s obsession with strong female characters is nothing less than an attack on human nature.”

    Well alrighty then. 

    But what about the actual contents?

    “If you doubt me, ask a partisan of sexual liberation why copulating with one’s adult sister, (with her consent of course), or with a menstruating fourteen-year old, (with the parent’s consent, of course), or with the corpse of one’s wife, (with her permission granted in her last will and testament, of course), or with an ape, (assuming she gave consent in sign language to the best of her ability, of course; or her owner gives consent on her behalf), in each case where actual coupling takes place, is evil, sick and perverted, whereas sexually stimulating the private parts of a person of one’s own sex, a situation where no copulation can take place, is nonetheless a cherished and romantic fulfillment of utterly natural longings which law, custom, society, public opinion, and the Roman Catholic Church must not only tolerate, but support, applaud, and approve. Ask them.”

    Sweet Jesus, what the hell with those equivalences.  And that’s even before digging into the notion of a parent giving consent for their child. D:

    “Any female character can be accused of being weak. ANY ONE. The trick is to have your female characters be good characters, having central roles in the plot, and reasonable character arcs, and as many vices and virtues as the logic of drama and your inner burning vision demand.”

    Now wait, this is actually sensib-

    “Ignore whether she is strong or weak. It is like worrying about whether your male character is winsome, devoted and loves babies. He needs a reasonable amount of devotion to be a hero, but it cannot be his main point, because in real life girls look for strength in men first, leadership, trustworthiness, that sort of thing.”

    Damn it, Wright!  

    “The modern age is suffering from spiritual and philosophical starvation in the midst of what should be the greatest feast of mind and spirit imaginable. Someone has told them offal was food and food was poison, and so they gnaw on foul things which cannot satisfy them, which make their hungers grow. They are dying of thirst, and someone offers them seawater to drink.

    Let us now and forever eschew anger and indignation at these creatures. They are blind kittens who cling and claw and scratch at the hand that come to feed and comfort.”

    Just like he eschewed anger over Korra and Asami hooking up, didn’t rationalize beating gay men as a natural response, and how he had no regrets over not punching Terry Pratchett. 

    Oh wait. 

    I get the feeling the God I believe in is very different from what Wright believes in. Possibly even diametrically opposed.

  22. One of those ‘Operator’ lines should have been ‘SMOF’. Sorry, sloppy search and replace (as I was in a hurry).

  23. It is a truth universally acknowledged, that a single puppy in possession of a bad attitude, must be in want of a Hugo.
    — Not Entirely Jane Austen

  24. No one would have believed in the first years of the twenty-first century that the SFF world was being watched keenly and closely by intelligences stranger than fen’s and yet as demented as his own; that as fen busied themselves about their various concerns they were scrutinised and studied, perhaps almost as narrowly as a fan with a mimeograph machine might Letter of Comment about the transient mundanes that swarm and wander in a convention hotel lobby. With infinite complacency fen went to and fro over this globe about their little affairs, serene in their assurance of their empire over genre. It is possible that the mundanes in the convention hotel do the same … Yet, across the gulf of the Internet, minds that are like unto our canines, intellects energetic and cool and unsympathetic, regarded this fandom with envious eyes, and slowly and surely drew their plans against us.
    — Not Entirely H.G. Wells, Either

  25. Jamoche, if that’s the Cordwainer Smith allusion I think, wonderful. 🙂

    Rick, that’s pretty glorious.

  26. Bruce Baugh – Can’t take all the credit, I’m just expanding on today’s subtitle 😉

  27. I have to say, I am very glad my decision to vote led me to read the novels. And i am bitterly sorry that i didnt read the Hugo packet more closely in years when i had it, and when it contained stories and novellas

  28. On Henry Dampier:

    “On a university campus, if someone tells you that you have to check your privilege — and you’re trying to move up from being an associate professor — you must submit utterly or have your life destroyed. Even if the person is a 55 year old lesbian who had to quit molesting kids because she became too ugly to have them fall for the ol’ candy-van trick anymore, if you’re an associate professor and she’s the committee chair, you need to grovel to her.”

    What the hell kind of example is that? A person with a reputation of being a molester would have been thrown out at the first sniff of a scandal. And why is it so important to say that the woman is a lesbian? Is it worse to be told something by a lesbian?

    The whole article is based on that it is wrong to respect the authority of a person if that person is a woman or a lesbian. Sexist drivel. But at least he admitts that the puppies and their ilk are in stark minority.

  29. Brad’s piece is excellent propaganda, as always. I tried to do a fisk sort of thing with it, but what the hell. Have to admit he’s a pretty good political pamphletist.

    He also tries to get some distance between himself and VD with badge designer’s statements. Plot thickens!

  30. “Someone has told them offal was food and food was poison, and so they gnaw on foul things which cannot satisfy them, which make their hungers grow.”

    Hey, offal is perfectly fine food.

    (A dog should know this.)

  31. Oh no, Dampier’s article is based on the idea that it’s wrong to think of lesbians, leftists, and ugly people as equals in any way, let alone superior, including academic and legal ones where she obviously has some sort of unspecified advantage. Any sort of “situational dominance” (read: temporary advantage that is against the natural order of things) such as, say, an unbiased legal system is wrong and will somehow disappear from the face of the earth, as they will find themselves only really empowered where people are “compelled to respect their authority” instead of treating them as equals, because how could a hideous socialist female lesbian possibly be equal? Geez, don’t you understand the classics? I have a reading list right here…

    This guy sees leftist dominance conspiracies under every cabbage leaf.

  32. Spacefaring kitten: “Brad’s piece is excellent propaganda, as always. I tried to do a fisk sort of thing with it, but what the hell. Have to admit he’s a pretty good political pamphletist. He also tries to get some distance between himself and VD with badge designer’s statements.”

    Wasn’t he trumpeting about the fact that he’s being deployed, so we should all respect his authoritah or something? Why is he still hanging around bloviating?

  33. JJ

    I guess the deployment keeps him from answering any questions, but not from the occasional throwing up of smokescreens.

  34. Torgerson and his “speaking for the little man” really makes me mad. I am one of those fans who had never anything to do with worldcon. I live on the other side of the planet. I am not an English native speaker.

    I am one of this “legion of fans” and I loathe what he did. I think the stories that were elected by worldcon members in the past years were very often great choices, extraordinary and thought provoking. While this year’s puppy stories are at their best bubblegum for the brain and at their worst downright propaganda.

    Worldcon always was open for everybody, I just never felt the need to participate since I could not go physically and I found the members were doing a great job.

    This year, I got a membership, so that this award stays a symbol for great science fiction and fantasy. Because this guy certainly does not speak for me as much as he claims to.

  35. I just love that Torgersen’s list of nominees, most of which consists of works by his buddies, which are mediocre at best and not popular at all is brought up by him all the time as some great example of meritocracy and fairness.

    And it’s pretty sad to see a professional author continuing to insist that SFF should be all about the rip-roaring good story. That’s all there is to writing to him. Anything more complex which isn’t about “rip-roaring good story” and isn’t suitable to any average 12 year old is “too pretentious” for him.

    Also to say that SFF was always about the “rip-roaring good story” is quite ignorant of the history of the field. H.G. Wells certainly thought differently, and so did Hugo Gernsback.

  36. This was my Hugo experience:

    1. *Anger at slate-ening*
    2. “Okay. I don’t like the slate finalists, but I’ll engage with this set of nominees.”
    3. *Begins reading stories*
    4. “Wow… this story is really bad. But that’s a fluke, right? Maybe if I keep reading…”
    5. *Finishes reading short fiction nominees*

    From what I’m seeing of people blogging their short fiction reading, they seem to be having the same set of responses. People were angry, then they decided they wanted to give the stories a fair try, then they got even angrier when they saw what level of garbage was being forced on them.

    I haven’t seen anyone reviewing the stories who has considered them excellent fiction. I’d be interested in seeing Puppy supporting blogs review the stories to know what they think of them, but I haven’t encountered that yet.

  37. “And it’s pretty sad to see a professional author continuing to insist that SFF should be all about the rip-roaring good story. That’s all there is to writing to him. Anything more complex which isn’t about “rip-roaring good story” and isn’t suitable to any average 12 year old is “too pretentious” for him.”

    Especially because the field hasn’t seen such a rip-roaring good story as ANCILLARY JUSTICE in a looooong time.

  38. “Torgerson and his “speaking for the little man” really makes me mad. I am one of those fans who had never anything to do with worldcon. I live on the other side of the planet. I am not an English native speaker.”

    Let’s hope the Worldcon keeps wandering around the planet then, and gets somewhere you can go, because it is a lot of fun.

  39. @Happy turtle.
    I doubt many puppykins will be reading the nominations. Why bother when they’ve already been told they’re Hugo-worthy (and the vote isn’t really about the stories as much as it is choosing what kind of stick to poke into SJW eyes).
    Besides, reading takes time and they need to be getting on with their ‘fiskings’ and dog-pilings and ‘hur-hur-hur-ings’

  40. @Stefan Mitev,

    But if the Short Stories fit the description of “rip-roaring good story”, then at least there is consistency between word & deed. I’ve read all of the currently freely available short stories, and none of them qualify as rip-roaring good stories. The only one with action (and explosions!) is “Turncoat” whose title is a spoiler for how it ends so reading past the title was mostly redundant.

    I’ve just finished reading the novelettes and as a group they are better than the short stories but still don’t rise to my expectations of Hugo quality; I was hoping for fresh ideas, for sparks. Two of them “Championship B’tok” & “The Journeyman: In the Stone House” are chapters in ongoing stories so started at a disadvantage. Overall the novelettes weren’t very exciting, I’m struggling to remember the stories, in comparison to some of last year’s finalists that I still remember vividly. I’m taking a break before I assay the Novellas; I need a chaser of something fun first.

  41. Rick Moen on May 13, 2015 at 10:02 pm said:
    It is a truth universally acknowledged, that a single puppy in possession of a bad attitude, must be in want of a Hugo.
    — Not Entirely Jane Austen

    I already did that one:

    Peace Is My Middle Name on May 13, 2015 at 11:06 am said:
    It is a truth universally acknowledged, that a sad puppy in possession of a published story must be in want of a Hugo.

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