We Are Sad Puppies If You Please; We Are Sad Puppies If You Don’t Please 5/23

aka One Hundred Days of Being Stuck in a Crate Just Because You Ate the Goddamn Plum Pudding Again, if you Didn’t Want Me To Eat It You Shouldn’t Have Put it on the Table, Signed, Maggie, Your DOG

There are familiar and new bylines in today’s roundup: Bradley Armstrong, David Gerrold, John C. Wright, Michael Senft, John Ohno, Andrew Hickey, Vox Day, Amanda S. Green, Lis Carey, Elisa Bergslien, Patrick May, Rebekah Golden, Joseph Tomaras, and Spacefaring Kitten. (Credit for the alternate title goes to File 770 contributing editor of the day Greg.)

Bradley Armstrong on Screen Burn

“Solitair vs. The Hugos: Introduction” – May 22

I’ve seen Correia and company get a lot of bad press for this latest battle in the American culture war, but after a few arguments online I’m going to cool my jets. At least Sad Puppies is not as disgusting as this other movement from last year I won’t dignify with a name. Correia has been acerbic in arguing his case, but he hasn’t crossed any lines of decency unless you see the slate voting as an immoral-in-spirit rigging of democracy via statistical loophole. He was even harassed and slandered online, which I can’t approve of no matter the cause. I flipped my lid about the epidemic of that same thing springing from that-which-must-not-be-named, and I’m not going to go back on that because it’s happening to someone I disagree with.

Correia has my condolences, but I do still disagree with him on this matter. Matthew David Surridge, in declining his Puppy-backed nomination, wrote the most clear-headed and sensible summary of this whole affair I’ve seen on the internet by a wide margin, and my position mostly reflects his. In short, I see no evidence that there is a conspiracy to culturally control the Hugos, at least not one that is in any way recent, and I like stuff with literary aspirations just as much as modest pulp fare, if not more. I thought that high-brow art was what awards were for, since bestseller lists aren’t going to give the good ones the recognition they deserve. As far as the preachy sermonizing goes, I and everyone else who saw James Cameron’s Avatar knows that pain, but I don’t know what the Puppies’ threshold is for that. Are they objecting more strongly to badly-written garbage, or the presence of progressive stances in fiction?

 

David Gerrold on Facebook – May 23

[A long post that explains what Gerrold told the Wall Street Journal reporter during a 45-minute call, of which he says only three out-of-context sentences were used. The following is a short sample.]

When you get that many nominees dropping out and when you get so many major voices in the field condemning the slate-mongering, this is not just a casual disagreement. It is evidence that there is a widespread perception that the slate-mongering was a miscalculation on the part of Torgersen and Correia — and a deliberate attack on the field by Vox Day. (Vox Day has publicly declared his intentions to destroy the Hugos.)

That’s the situation. And that’s pretty much the gist of what I told the reporter from the Wall Street Journal — okay, in the interests of journalistic integrity, I also let the reporter know that I too share the views of Martin, Willis, Castro, Flint, Scalzi, Kowal, and others — that the slates were a bad idea and that this is the year of the asterisk.

And that brings me, finally (yes, I know you’re exhausted, me too) to the most important point I want to make. I know some of the people who ended up on the slates. They’re good people. They’re the real victims of this mess.

I’ve known Kevin Anderson for a long time and have a lot of affection for him. He’s had an enviable career. He’s a good man. I can’t imagine that Kevin would have been a knowledgeable part of any attempt to rig the Hugo awards. Likewise, I’m pretty sure that Tony Weiskopf and Sheila Gilbert would not have been either. They’ve all been around long enough to know better. They have great reputations, fairly earned by a lifetime of hard work.

Unfortunately, despite the integrity of the nominees, there’s still an asterisk on this year’s awards. It’s not their fault, but there it is.

 

John C. Wright

“No One Cares About Your Hooey” – May 23

….Anyone clicking through the link there will come to this:

  • I believe, profess, and unambiguously support the view that homosexuals must be accepted with respect, compassion, and sensitivity.
  • I believe, profess, and unambiguously support the view that every sign of unjust discrimination in their regard should be avoided.
  • I believe, profess, and unambiguously support the view that These persons are called to fulfill God’s will in their lives and, if they are Christians, to unite to the sacrifice of the Lord’s Cross the difficulties they may encounter from their condition.
  • I believe everything the one, true, holy, catholic and apostolic Church teaches.

So, from your reaction, I take it you did not click through the link….

 

Michael Senft interviews Ann Leckie for The Arizona Republic

“Ann Leckie on ‘Ancillary Justice’ acclaim and breaking the pronoun barrier” – May 21

Q: One common comment about the Imperial Radch books is that you are writing a “genderless” society. That doesn’t seem an accurate interpretation.

A: Yeah, it’s been very interesting to me to see some of the discussion surrounding Radchaai and gender. The assumption, for instance, that the Radchaai must have “eradicated” gender in that society, when that’s really nowhere in the text. Or that, as you say, gender doesn’t exist, or that Breq “doesn’t understand” the concept of gender. Not infrequently someone will comment that it’s really stupid to think that a being as smart as Breq couldn’t get her head around the idea of gender, which is probably true, and that’s not really the problem Breq has, is it.

 

Michael Senft on Relentless Reading

“Ann Leckie on Hugos, pronouns and Genitalia Festivals” – May 23

And in an outtake from the story, she weighed in on the Hugo Awards, offering some advice to readers and members and why we she doesn’t worry about them too much:

“I probably shouldn’t comment on the Hugos this year. Though I will say what I would say any year, and that is that if the Hugos matter to you, you should nominate and vote. Sometimes I hear people comment that they don’t think they’re qualified because they don’t read enough, but I think the Hugos have always been about what the voters love, and if you love something and think it’s worthy of an award, you should be able to nominate it.

Beyond that—well, honestly, I figure I could spend my time worrying about awards, or even more pointlessly worrying about people’s opinions of awards, or even more pointlessly worrying about people’s opinions about who does or doesn’t “deserve” those awards — or I could spend my time writing. And I didn’t get into writing for awards. There are no guaranteed outcomes from anything, much less writing, and if I wanted a sure track to acclaim and fame and fortune I sure as heck wouldn’t have chosen writing to get that. I write because I want to tell stories, anything after that is extra. And fortunately I’ve got plenty of writing to do, and plenty of readers waiting for me to do it.”

 

John Ohno on The First Church of Space Jesus

“Utopianism and sci-fi as machine-lit” – May 13

There are several popular ways to look at science fiction as a genre. I have my own preferences. That said, the major opposing perspective — what I’d term the ‘machine-lit’ school of thought — has its merits, insomuch as it highlights a set of common tendencies in science fiction. I’d like to take this space to highlight the basic premise of machine-lit, the tendencies it breeds, and why I find most machine-lit to be relatively uninteresting.

(The third major perspective, what I call the spaceship-on-the-cover style, I find wholly uninteresting and is the subject of other essays; however, this perspective is becoming historically important lately because of some drama surrounding the Hugo awards being gamed by groups who prefer this style, so it’s worth mentioning in passing.)

 

Andrew Hickey on Sci-Ence! Justice Leak!

“Hugo Blogging: ‘Best’ Short Story” – May 23

….As a result, I do not believe a single story on the ballot is on there legitimately, and so I will be ranking No Award at the top of the list.

I would perhaps have some ethical qualms about this, were any of the nominated stories any good. However, happily, they range from merely not-very-good to outright abysmal. I shall rank the stories below No Award as follows:

Totaled by Kary English. This story is not in any way bad. It’s also, however, not in any way *good*, either. Were it in an anthology I read, I’d read through the story and forget it immediately, maybe remembering “the brain-in-a-jar one” if prodded enough. Perfectly competently put together, but with no new ideas, no interesting characters, and no real reason for existing. Certainly not Hugo-worthy…..

 

Vox Day on Vox Popoli

“Hugo Awards 2015: Best Novel” – May 23

This is how I am voting in the Best Novel category. Of course, I merely offer this information regarding my individual ballot for no particular reason at all, and the fact that I have done so should not be confused in any way, shape, or form with a slate or a bloc vote, much less a direct order by the Supreme Dark Lord of the Evil Legion of Evil to his 367 Vile Faceless Minions or anyone else.

  1. The Three-Body Problem
  2. Skin Game
  3. The Goblin Emperor
  4. The Dark Between the Stars
  5. No Award

 

Amanda S. Green on Nocturnal Lives

“A few thoughts” – May 23

I’m busy making my way through the Hugo packet. My goal is to read everything included in it. Once I have, I will vote for those works I feel best deserve the Hugo. So far, only a few things have thrown me out from the beginning because the author forgot that you can get your message across without beating your reader over the head. And, no, not all of them are anti-Puppy supported works. Will I post my ballot? Probably, but only after I vote.

 

Lis Carey on Lis Carey’s Library

“Cedar Sanderson Hugo Nomination Fanwriting Samples” – May 23

The distinctive feature here is that she congratulates herself on being feminine and a lady, as well as, of course, strong–unlike, we are given to understand, those silly and obnoxious feminists. She demands equality, and likes it when men put her on a pedestal, and doesn’t seem to notice the contradiction. Feminists are women seeking notoriety based solely on their femaleness, and want to grind men under their heels. There’s a long rant about lazy, wish-fulfillment fantasy, which does in fact say some useful and interesting things….

 

Elisa Bergslien on Leopards and Dragons

“My Three Body Problem problem”  – May 22

When I started this book, I was really looking forward to it.  I actually had it in my wish list at Amazon months ago because it sounded so cool. Now that I have finished it, I am really disappointed.  With all the hype about how deep, insightful, and exciting the book is, I have been left wondering if I read the same book. It wasn’t all bad I guess, but for me it definitely didn’t even remotely live up to the hype and I honestly don’t know if I will ever bother to pick up the next book to see what happens with the human race. As it is presented in the book, you kind of have to wonder if anyone is worth saving.

 

RogerBW’s Blog

“The Three Body Problem Liu Cixin” – May 23

This is a perversely fascinating book that gains far more interest from the problems it sets up than from the way it resolves them….

 

Patrick May

“2015 Hugo Award Novelette Category” – May 23

[Ranking is preceded by comments on all of the novelettes.)

My Hugo ballot for this category is:

  1. The Journeyman: In the Stone House
  2. The Triple Sun: A Golden Age Tale
  3. Ashes to Ashes, Dust to Dust, Earth to Alluvium
  4. Championship B’Tok

I am not including “The Day the World Turned Upside Down” on my ballot.

 

Rebekah Golden

“2015 Hugo Awards Best Professional Artist: Reviewing A Pollack” – May 23

His imagery is clear, epic, sweeping and fun….

 

Rebekah Golden

“2015 Hugo Awards Best TV Show: Reviewing Doctor Who” – May 22

I knew a guy who was a virgin and didn’t know what the big deal about sex was. Then he had sex. Then he wanted to have sex all the time. I’ve watched a few episodes of Doctor Who but I admit while I liked it I didn’t know what the big deal was. Now I know what the big deal is.

 

Joseph Tomaras on A Skinseller’s Workshop

“Novelettes, Novellas and Fan Writers” – May 23

Of the Analog stories, that leaves Rajnar Vajra’s story with the deceptively stupid title “The Triple Sun: A Golden Age Tale”. The title is clearly meant to pander to nostalgia for this-boy’s-life-in-space military SF stories of the so-called “Golden Age,” and insofar as it was selected by both sets of puppies for their slates, it succeeded. The title, however, bears little resemblance to the story itself, which can be read as subverting the tropes in which it superficially seems to glory. There is a valid argument to be had about whether subversion-of-tropes has not itself become a trope in contemporary SF, and a redundant one. I sympathize with that argument, but Vajra’s story is at least a better-than-average exemplar of the type, which held by interest start to finish and left me with a smile on my face. I encourage Hugo voters to read it with an open mind, and those who are not WorldCon members to seek it out.

 

 

John Scalzi on Whatever

“A Brief Note About Me Reviewing the Hugo Nominees” – May 23

I’ve been asked a few times if I plan to write any reviews of the Hugo nominees this year after I’ve read them. The answer: No, I don’t. One, if you look at my general modus operandi around Hugos, I don’t ever really comment on what I think of the merits of the individual nominees* until after the voting window has closed. Two, this year, this policy seems even more advisable as there are excitable people who would point out any reviews on my part as scale-tipping, regardless of what the review said. Three, as a general rule, in public, I try not to say negative things about the work of other writers. I will make exceptions from time to time. But generally, I avoid it….

 

 

567 thoughts on “We Are Sad Puppies If You Please; We Are Sad Puppies If You Don’t Please 5/23

  1. Will: if we are going to put on the show, I call dibs on Rum Tum Tugger.

  2. Steve Moss:

    “The central issue so far as SF/F fans should be concerned is whether John C. Wright can write. Whether he approves or disapproves of gays is besides the point.

    Why is his opposition to homosexual behavior a central issue?”

    Because that opposition is covered in one of his works up for a Hugo.

  3. ‘Nigel, we can think ill of them in a way that matches the evidence.’

    Like you did with Jo Walton?

  4. ‘What else could I possibly have a position on? What “goal posts” would be moving? How could there possibly be any goal? You mean, like, to criticize Jo Walton? Why on earth would anyone do that?’

    I think we might be getting sucked into a faux-naivete event-horizon.

  5. @Brian Z:

    See JJ at 12:43am.

    Like JJ, I agree that you have adequately cited that more nomination ballots were submitted this year. However, you have done nothing to address what amounts to a rewording of the Original Puppy Complaint. (Small pool, regular nominators, knew and influenced each other – it’s the Seekrit SJW Cabal argument with the “SJW” filed off.)

    Then there’s the other line, where you trot out the old “the Puppy slates were diverse!” canard, in which the nomination of one Old White Guy to 60% of the slots in one category is somehow Diversity In Action.

    If you want us to believe those thoroughly-debunked Puppy talking points, you’re damned well going to need to show some facts. Otherwise, people are likely to start calling you a Puppy again… because you’re trying to sell us their bullshit.

    Again.

  6. The Hugo slate is being filled
    A thousand pups, a thousand shills
    A million ways to waste your dime
    Not one can write a decent line

  7. There’s a Puppy on the road
    His brain is swerving like a toad*….

    *Damned if I know how toads swerve, but apparently they do.

  8. Rev Bob: “If you want us to believe those thoroughly-debunked Puppy talking points, you’re damned well going to need to show some facts.”

    It’s become apparent that Brian Z. is just going to continue Making Shit Up without ever providing evidence to back up his false assertions or admitting that they are untrue.

    Therefore, I have invented this handy MSU™ label, for use whenever Brian Z. posts such false assertions. Please feel free to make use of this without any royalty payments required.

    Brian Z: “In the past there was a smaller pool of (MSU™ regular nominators) who (MSU™ knew each other personally) and (MSU™ influenced each other). Today (MSU™ a more diverse group) seems to have started nominating, but are also (MSU™ influenced by the internet and sites they frequent).”

  9. Puppies seem strange, when stuck in a manger

    You know, I was going to do a parody of this, but the original lyrics are just swell on their own:

    People are strange when you’re a stranger
    Faces look ugly when you’re alone
    Women seem wicked when you’re unwanted
    Streets are uneven when you’re down

    When you’re strange faces come out of the rain
    When you’re strange no one remembers your name
    When you’re strange, when you’re strange
    When you’re strange

    People are strange when you’re a stranger
    Faces look ugly when you’re alone
    Women seem wicked when you’re unwanted
    Streets are uneven when you’re down

    When you’re strange faces come out of the rain
    When you’re strange no one remembers your name
    When you’re strange, when you’re strange
    When you’re strange, alright, yeah

    When you’re strange faces come out of the rain
    When you’re strange no one remembers your name
    When you’re strange, when you’re strange
    When you’re strange

  10. @Maximillian: I learnt my shieldwalling in the SCA, and my basic pre-combat briefing will always stick with me; “Shield up, head down, and don’t stop hitting until the other guy falls over”.

    This briefing did later get amended with “If the other guy doesn’t fall over, and doesn’t throw any blows back at you for a really long time, its ok to stop and check that you haven’t picked a fight with a tree”

  11. @SIW:

    Of course not. That’s a sure-fire route to getting taken for a wild ride.

  12. However, you have done nothing to address what amounts to a rewording of the Original Puppy Complaint. (Small pool, regular nominators, knew and influenced each other – it’s the Seekrit SJW Cabal argument with the “SJW” filed off.)

    Then there’s the other line, where you trot out the old “the Puppy slates were diverse!” canard, in which the nomination of one Old White Guy to 60% of the slots in one category is somehow Diversity In Action.

    Once more unto the breach, dear friends.

    I didn’t complain about there being a small regular pool of nominators. I think it is one of the reasons that the system has consistently picked good nominees throughout its history – a small regular pool of nominators took their job seriously and also informed and educated each other about potential nominees. That’s my opinion: it was a good thing.

    I never said slates are diverse. I said new voters coming in are more diverse, as demonstrated by how for the first time in history a significant number were willing to vote as a bloc, which is bad.

    Got anything else, Bob?

  13. ‘The staff on the ships doesn’t recognize gender, just hashtags.’

    That’s just unrealistic. All those hashtags floating around would be lethal hazards under combat conditions

  14. Brian Z: “I said (MSU™ new voters coming in are more diverse, as demonstrated by how for the first time in history a significant number were willing to vote as a bloc).”

    Because diverse voters vote as a bloc. Uh-huh.

  15. Lucy In The Sky With Diamonds In The Style Of John C Wright

    Picture yourself as a Pup on a river
    Where SJWs have harsh mellow eyes
    Somebody hands you the butter quite slowly
    A chorf with those sable black eyes

    Vast profane flowers of foliage green
    Glowering under your bed
    Look for the churl with the bun in his eyes
    And it’s none

    Follow them down to a drudge by a mountain
    Where bakerish people eat pie-covered pies
    The manticore smiles as you snarl at the flowers
    And shows you its knee-topping thighs

    Lying false liars appear on the shore
    Taking your Hugo away
    Write a long blog with your quill in your heart
    And they’re gone

  16. Well, that’s just not even fair, SocialInjusticeWorrier. You don’t even have to make the words make sense to filk that song.

    Oh. Right. The Puppy logic makes no sense.

    Never mind.

  17. @JJ

    “You don’t even have to make the words make sense to filk that song.”

    That’s why the style of John C Wright was the perfect blunt instrument for the job.

  18. @MickeyFinn ““f the other guy doesn’t fall over, and doesn’t throw any blows back at you for a really long time, its ok to stop and check that you haven’t picked a fight with a tree”

    So your training was better than what both the Vikings extras and the puppies received?

    #insertBujoldtribute – I do not Shieldwall, boy, I kill, as a Siamese kills, as quickly, efficiently, and with least risk to myself as I can arrange.

  19. Brian Z – The pattern that would emerge is that the Hugo nominators all have their own opinions. Are they all different? Not necessarily. There are a lot of reasons why they might be the same. In the past there was a smaller pool of regular nominators who knew each other personally and influenced each other. Today a more diverse group seems to have started nominating, but are also influenced by the internet and sites they frequent. That might play a similar function to everybody talking to each other face to face

    Well yeah, people can only read a finite amount of books in a year, some more than others, and those more likely to be read are ones talked about so there’s going to be some overlap. That’s how the nominations work, people say what they liked the best and whatever overlaps the most gets nominated. The internet is going to expose more people to a wider selection of work sure. There’s certainly a segment of the diverse crowd voting this year that nominated the same works and we don’t even have to guess why, they told us.

    Aside from those folks people nominated a wide selection of books, so they’re talking but they sure don’t agree with each other. That doesn’t really answer the question of what pattern you see that has caused what you count as a decline in quality of Hugo nominated work?

    You brought it up three times! Surely if you suspect a pattern you could say what it is. Please clarify, what pattern do you see that has caused a decline in the quality of works nominated (from the last 5 years or 2011-2014 or whatever, your years shift a bit)? I can tell you there was a vast drop in quality this year and can easily point to that cause.

  20. @Bryan Z.: The pattern may well be that along about 2010 you had a significant birthday. I mean in fan years, not years from birth. A lot of us hit points in our fandom where we fall out of sorts with current work in the genre. This can go a couple of directions: either, “It’s all different now and not like what I enjoyed reading when I was twelve!” is one. This was how a lot of older fans felt about the New Wave back in the day. But it can also be, “It’s all a bit familiar now and doesn’t give me that shock-of-the-new I used to reliably get every time I opened a book.” This happens because one is no longer a naive reader, and one’s comprehension of the breadth of the field’s tropes has outpaced writers’ rate of adding to them.

    Both of these phenomena are especially familiar to us from music fandom. “Why doesn’t anyone make great music by $BandsILiked any more?” BUT ALSO “Why have #BandsILiked gotten so stale.”

  21. @Jim That is one of the more sensible comments I’ve heard in weeks because it seems to point out that our views of works can be subjective and contextual.

    I would genuinely like to hear more of your thoughts on that, as I know that a recognition of subjectivity and context in even their slightest forms are what I thought I would find in my zany dash through whatever that territory I dashed through was, and if there’s a way to see it that doesn’t raise so many hackles, that would be a bridge for me.

    Many thanks.

  22. @Steve Moss: I agree that John C. Wright can be a good stylist regardless of his views on human sexuality. He can also, regardless, be a good storyteller. Not to say he is or isn’t either of those things. There are a few different things that draw discussion to Wright’s views on human sexuality. These reasons are distinct but overlap.

    One: Wright isn’t only a fiction writer. He’s also critic, blogger, political polemicist and Catholic apologist. All of those are relevant to the discussion, partly because his nonfiction is on the Hugo ballot but also because the Puppy campaigns are deeply political and Wright is an energetic advocate of Puppy Politics.

    Two: Some people find Wright to be a bad writer – an clumsy stylist and an incompetent storyteller, at least going by the stuff in the Hugo packet – and, in the way of disappointed fans and critics everywhere, they then start asking, “So why is this bad?” They conclude that Wright’s religious and political commitments corrupt his storytelling and criticism; that the stories are “anti-SJW message fiction” and the messy essays the inevitable result of disordered thoughts.

    Three: Still other fans don’t get that far, because they are applying triage. You think it’s terribly important whether Wright is “a fine writer.” These fans respond, “There are a lot of fine writers out there and I will never get to them all. So I’ll start with the ones who don’t think I should be jailed or killed.”

    The third view tends to especially scandalize partisans of the problematic writer. Isn’t excellence rare and precious? But the truth is, no, not so much. Certainly “excellence” of the level most genre writers attain is neither. There are plenty of really good writers about spaceships and lasers, or magic and swords, plenty of decent tellers of superhero tales, an awful lot of good genre television. Ever gotten into the house concert scene? It can make you despair if you let it. Because one thing that quickly becomes apparent is that there’s more music out there that you would really enjoy than you are ever going to discover. So many people choose, reasonably, not to insult themselves with the stuff they do have time to read.

  23. @Will: Thanks. A personal example of subjective experience. I think the trope of the interstellar empire is ridiculous, because the idea of interstellar trade in (almost all) goods is absurd. Note: that’s not the subjective part! That’s just fact*.

    But I loved Ancillary Justice. Because the description of what Breq had been and what she had lost and why she kept going compelled me with its freshness. There could be a dozen other books out there about former AIs reduced to a single organic body – apparently there aren’t, but there could be – but I read this one, so it’s what was fresh to me.

    *No, really. Ask yourself what it costs to get a ton of grain out of a gravity well at Point A and then into – another completely pretend concept – “warp space” and back down the gravity well at Point B. Now tell me, with a straight face, that if you can afford to manipulate that much energy, you can’t also afford the energy it would take to just grow grain at Point B.

  24. @Jim I think there’s an awful lot of truth in what you’re saying in these comments. I think you’re describing reality extremely well. I’ll be very interested what others have to say.

  25. @Jim PS I agree about empires! And I also agree about happily setting aside certain issues to enjoy the heck out of some other aspect of a work.

  26. Jim, the gravity well issue is why we should be putting more effort into space elevator research. I want my lift to the stars!

  27. @Brian Z: “I didn’t complain about there being a small regular pool of nominators.”

    Didn’t say you did. However, you did and do assert that this clique/cabal exists, just as the Puppies do, without a single shred of evidence to support the claim.

    Citation frakking needed.

  28. @Maximilian: “@Steve. Schwartz – Have you ever read ‘The Steel Bonnets’ by McDonald Fraser? The fear that you might have anything to do with that makes me want to either hand you the Hugos and/or call in an airstrike.”

    I have not, but *boom* another work goes on the reading list.

    Thank you!

  29. ULTRAGOTHA on May 24, 2015 at 8:45 pm said

    I’ll see your last line of Cryoburn, and raise you “Ivan, you idiot, what are you doing here?” from Memory.

    *There’s* a line years and tomes in the making!

    Ok people, I bought an ebook copy of Memory having lost the paper one and re-read it and I still don’t get it. What is the significance of that line?

  30. Jim Henley: Wright isn’t only a fiction writer. He’s also critic, blogger, political polemicist and Catholic apologist

    Nah, he’s what causes us Catholics to have to apologize.

    (I know, different definitions. But the other one doesn’t apply either – he doesn’t speak for anyone I know.)

  31. Steven Schwartz @ 10:19 pm- So we are to judge whether a work is Hugo worthy, as least in part, based on the author’s pontifications? If so, that is a double edged sword.

    And we are to re-evaluate a friendship we have with a person if that that person has another friend with allegedly unpopular views? If that is your metric, I’m proud to say that we’ll never be friends.

    snowcrash @ 10:36 pm- I believe the major members of the ELoE have all either won awards or been nominated for awards before the most recent drama.

    We all know Larry Correia was nominated for the John C. Campbell before the current mess and has a couple of Audie Awards. Per a quick Google search:

    Theodore Beale was twice selected to serve on the Nebula Award jury. He received a preliminary nomination (whatever that is) for the Prometheus Award (1997) and was nominated for an American Christian Fiction Award (2009-10).

    John C. Wright’s fairly substantial nomination/award history: http://www.locusmag.com/SFAwards/Db/NomLit154.html#bot

    Sarah Hoyt won a Prometheus Award and has a couple of other nominations: http://www.locusmag.com/SFAwards/Db/NomLit62.html

    So the ELoE seems to be pretty good writers, if the above history is accurate, albeit with only a few awards.

    My take on it is that people are letting their perceptions of the ELoE’s political/religious views color their views on them as both people and as authors. De-humanizing the enemy is always one of the first steps.

    Hampus Eckerman @ 1:15 am- Fair enough.

    Jim Henley @ 7:30 am- And the opposition to the SP is not “deeply political”? How many Hugo winners over the last decade or two have been conservatives again?

    And leaving aside pure politics, there is also the issue of group politics. I believe there is a segment of “fandom” who is upset at SP because it stripped certain cliques of the ability to get them and theirs nominated for a Hugo. The apple cart has been upset. Those affected are crying foul.

    In fairness, there are also segments of fandom who believe in and yearn for the past Golden Age when slates made no appearance, when log-rolling and lobbying never occurred, and only the best works of the year received a nomination.

    And exactly where has John C. Wright advocated jailing or killing anyone? I have seen where he references emotions, in him or others, of wanting to do violence when someone advocates assisted suicide or homosexuality. I’ve wanted to do violence when people cut me off in traffic. Having an emotional flash is not the same as advocating the action. Otherwise every single one of us would be in prison.

    Jamoche @ 11:00 am- John C. Wright is not the Pope. Or even a Cardinal or Bishop. So I think it a fair assumption that he speaks only for himself on religious issues, as does everyone else posting on File770 (unless the Pope is a secretly participating under an alias).

  32. >> Theodore Beale was twice selected to serve on the Nebula Award jury.>>

    Aren’t Nebula jurists selected more or less at random from a pool of any SFWA member who volunteers? I don’t remember the exact details, but I’m pretty sure being a Nebula jurist doesn’t qualify as an award or even as praise, merely as “You’re a member of SFWA and you said you’d do it, so it’s your turn in the barrel.”

  33. Steve Moss: “So I think it a fair assumption that he speaks only for himself on religious issues, as does everyone else posting on File770”

    That’s my point. He seems to think he speaks for all Catholics (and all straight men with tire irons). He doesn’t. But so long as other people with the misfortune to share a group with him keep silent, there will be Culture Warrior types pointing to that silence as consent.

  34. @Anna – I believe that it was second-hand, Ivan reported it to Miles. The speaker was Illyan, when Ivan was sitting with him. As you can imagine, it was repeated a number of times.

  35. Kurt Busiek @ 11:25 am- So if SFWA does no quality control on who serves on its Nebula juries, doesn’t that undermine the importance of the Nebulas?

  36. Stevie at 6:59 am: “…VD is too egotistical to accept that he isn’t the best at everything he does.”

    “I’m the best there is at what I do but what I do best isn’t very nice. I’m the Voxverine.”

  37. Steve Moss: Thing is, what about the nominees? Minus the ones you mentioned already, there’s Kevin J. Anderson, who is a mediocre writer at best, Michael F. Flynn, who is a good writer, despite the Puppy-nominated story not being his best work, Jim Butcher, who sells well and gets very little in the way of awards and, Lerner, who’s most well-known for being a Niven co-author. The others generally haven’t seen much attention outside of Analog.

    The rest of SF isn’t exactly giving them ringing endorsements.

  38. >> So if SFWA does no quality control on who serves on its Nebula juries, doesn’t that undermine the importance of the Nebulas?>>

    I wouldn’t say so. It depends on the results, and on what the larger community thinks of those results.

    But that ten-year-old Making Light thread that Beale complains about a lot went directly into the question of how Beale was chosen, what the rules were, and what that means to the quality of results, and was participated in by far more knowledgeable people than me (not an SFWA member, never participated in the Nebulas), including John Scalzi, who defended Beale’s participation. So if you’re interested in more about that, I can recommend it as an interesting read, at least until it goes off the rails (but by then they’re done with that particular subject).

    I merely note that I don’t think participation in a Nebula jury is something that should be listed with awards won. It’s not an award, and it doesn’t say anything qualitative about the juror beyond that they fulfilled the requirements for SFWA membership and (if I remember correctly) that they volunteered.

  39. Steve Moss: Kurt Busiek @ 11:25 am- So if SFWA does no quality control on who serves on its Nebula juries, doesn’t that undermine the importance of the Nebulas?

    That was pointed out at the time by Patrick Nielsen Hayden. Mr. Beale’s place on the jury was defended at the time by John Scalzi, yes, that Scalzi. Or it was, until Mr. Beale showed up and showed his talents for winning friends and influencing people…

    Read the comments. It’s very illuminating.

    http://nielsenhayden.com/electrolite/archives/006122.html

  40. Steve Moss on May 25, 2015 at 12:13 pm said:

    Kurt Busiek @ 11:25 am- So if SFWA does no quality control on who serves on its Nebula juries, doesn’t that undermine the importance of the Nebulas?

    SFWA does not apply a political litmus test to its Nebula jurors, no.

    Ironically, Theodore Beale first became associated with John Scalzi when Beale was selected for the Nebula jury with Scalzi, and Scalzi defended the man to SFWA members who were upset about Beale’s statements.

    That’s right. Scalzi defended Beale. Then Beale came into the thread where the matter was being discussed and tried to overawe the professional physicists and publishers and editors and authors there with his expertise and got his backside paddled.

    That was ten years ago, and Beale has borne a grudge against Scalzi ever since.

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