The Bark Between The Stars 5/29

aka If All Puppies Were Brothers, Would You Let One Marry Your Sister?

Here in today’s roundup: Martin Wisse, Sarah A. Hoyt, Alexandra Erin, Lela E. Buis, Bruce Baugh, Adam-Troy Castro, Vox Day, Daddy Warpig, Phil Sandifer, Shaun Duke, Spacefaring Kitten, Rebekah Golden, Dave Noonan, Lis Carey, Aziz Poonawalla, Charlie Jane Anders, Natalie Luhrs, and Kyra. (Title credit belongs to File 770 contributing editors of the day Jim Henley and May Tree – who independently submitted the same item — and Owlmirror.)

Martin Wisse on Wis[s]e Words

“Your writer’s group would not be angry with this” – May 29

That’s the sort of bollocks you hear a lot of science fiction readers talk about, that they want prose that’s transparent, “doesn’t get in the way of the story”, doesn’t demand any attention paid, doesn’t challenge. There’s of course a huge inferiority complex running through parts of science fiction, resulting in the dismissal of everything that smacks of the literary and difficult. That’s what you see here. It’s not bad persé, it’s just a bit unambitious.

And to be honest, the Hugos too often have been that already. There are plenty of middle of the road novels that have been nominated and won it. Do we really need more of that, or do we rather have something a bit more challenging? Cetainly the Puppy nominees aren’t the answers: by all reports they mostly fail even Paulk’s rather low standards.

 

Sarah A. Hoyt on According To Hoyt

“Pure Gold” – May 29

We know the air of collegiate comradery is a lie, to an extent. Note I said to an extent, and I’ll explain later.

Part of my amusement at the reaction to the whole Sad Puppies thing has been the very same people saying there were never politics in SF being the very same people who once told me that there were rifts I didn’t see in the field and that some people in the early two thousands still didn’t talk to each after arguments over the Vietnam war back in the day.

And anyone who has read Heinlein’s bio knows about the other rifts in fandom and among professionals way back before that, a lot of them political.

But this is to an extent, because to another extent… Well, guys, we’re all pretty weird. We spend our days writing about worlds and futures that don’t exist.

Older son who aspires to medicine (and is engaged in preparation to practice it) tells me that only people with a compulsion to work at healing (and he says it’s a compulsion) understand other people with the same issue. Well, guys… Yeah, same for writers, and to an extent for fans.

I’m not going to tell you that I love all my colleagues. There are many I loathe, many I cordially detest, many I tolerate, and, yes, many I love dearly. Weirdly, this doesn’t rift across political lines (of course, my politics being what they are, they are at best cross-sectional to real world politics) or even correlate to those I like to read. Yeah, curse it, some of the ones I loathe write pretty good stuff. (Shakes fist at great novelist in the sky, who has a sense of humor.)

 

Alexandra Erin on Blue Author Is About To Write

“The Puppies come so close to getting it, so often.” – May 28

…I stumbled across a post by Dave Freer from February called “To Serve One Master — The Reader“.

The major thrust of the blog post is the idea that however an author intends a work to be received is secondary to how readers receive it, which… okay. This is something that it’s taken me a long time to accept as an author, but I have to say that I am in general agreement with it.

The thing is, it’s weird to see a self-professed Puppy saying this. After all, these are the same people who, whenever someone starts talking about the racist or sexist content of a work, respond with “BUT THAT’S NOT WHAT THE AUTHOR MEANT! YOU CAN’T KNOW WHAT’S IN THEIR HEARTS AND MINDS! YOU’RE JUST READING INTO THINGS!”

 

Lela E. Buis

“Puppy Debate Maxing Out” – May 29

I’ve been involved in work-for-hire for the last couple of weeks, and am just coming up for air. Checking around my virtual environment, I notice the debate about the Hugo’s seems to have gone past the point of raging insults and into slash and burn territory.

This is a process that’s encouraged by the nature of the Internet itself. If this were a space opera, for example, the plot would play out something like this: The Puppies make a raid and take over territory at the Hugo Awards. Because this is considered an aggressive action, defenders of the award would assemble a force to shake them loose. They’d all let fly with photon torpedoes and phaser cannons set to “kill.” If the forces had to resort to hand-to-hand combat, they might bring out their light sabers and go at it in Star Wars style. The result would either be that the Puppies are driven off, or else they prevail and put down roots in their new territory.

The problem with this scenario, of course, is that all the battles are actually virtual. They’re being fought on blogs, websites, Twitter and Amazon accounts and in a few news outlets. This means that there can be no really decisive victory. Defenders of the Hugos can score against the other side with a well-turned phrase, but not really take back the stronghold.

 

Bruce Baugh on Google Plus  – May 28

Kate Paulk will be organizing the Sad Puppies 4 effort for next year’s Hugos, so it’s interesting to see what her creative priorities are. Two things of note, for me…

#1. Her guideline #7, “The prose is invisible.”, seems like a good way to toss out some of sf/f’s best writers, including Vance, Wolfe, Lafferty, and so many others.This line from Jack Vance’s “The Last Castle”, for instance, is delightful and very much visible: “In the end, death came uniformly to all, and all extracted as much satisfaction from their dying as this essentially graceless process could afford.” Prose I stop to admire in delight, or wonder, or the kind of bewilderment that leads to insight is a big part of why I read, and always has been.

#2. There’s nothing on her list about world-building, at all. This isn’t unique to this piece, either. None of the Puppies have much at all to say about world-building. I read sf/f for other places and times just as much for specific characters and stories within them, and one of the things that can make a work great is its setting. But seriously, they just don’t talk about world-building, which seems to me like talking about cooking shows and never wondering how something tastes.

 

Adam-Troy Castro on Facebook – May 29

…Even if you’re Eric Flint and write exactly the kind of fiction the Puppies like, if you think the Puppies have no case, if you write several blog posts addressing them with logic, if you criticize Brad Torgersen in particular, you are a CHORF guilty of Saul Alinsky tactics and should be subjected to demands for apology.

Can we just make a rule in life that if you invoke the name of an old lefty who has been dead for decades and who is in fact unknown to most people who harbor left-wing beliefs, to attack criticism for crying out loud, you are at best a silly silly person?

 

 

 

Vox Day on Vox Popoli

“The Olympian indifference of Johnny Con” – May 29

Mike Cernovich @Cernovich As a white straight male capitalist, I’m happy for @scalzi’s $3.4 million book deal. But how many women/POC are squeezed out because of it?

I had estimated 680 on the basis of other SF publishers’ current initial advances, but I stand corrected. …Tor is funding 13 more John Scalzi books at the opportunity cost of no less than 523 initial advances to new science fiction authors. As a side note, it is informative to see how much initial advances from major publishers have shrunk over time; the advance for my first published novel in 1996 was $20,000.

Those who have thrown hissy fits over Sad Puppies supposedly slate-blocking as many as 12 authors and preventing them from receiving recognition for their work at the Hugo Awards would do well to consider the fact that Patrick Nielsen Hayden and John Scalzi have combined to prevent more than 500 authors from getting published and receiving paid advances. Opportunity cost is a bitch, especially when you’re the one upon whose fingers the window of opportunity has closed.

 

Shaun Duke on World in a Satin Bag

“On the Hugo Awards: Two Scholarly-ish Projects to Come (An Announcement)” – May 29

A lot of us in SF/F circles heard of the rumors circulating about the Hugos in the weeks prior to their announcement.  I heard many rumors from some of my friends, and many more circulated (or were revealed as truth) through RP/SP circles and through those with far more industry clout than myself.  Since last year’s Hugo Awards were also controversial, I had the feeling that these rumors were going to indicate a blow-up that we hadn’t yet scene.  And so I turned to a friend of mine for help:  Aaron Beveridge.

Aaron is one of the co-creators of MassMine, along with Nicholas Van Horn. MassMine was created with the intent of helping academics acquire meaningful data from social media platforms (specifically, Twitter).  Their program is pretty complicated, so I’ll let you go to the website and learn all about it (there’s a video and everything!).  Aaron, it turns out, is one of those enthusiastic individuals who believes, as I do, that collaboration is critical to academic work, and so it didn’t take any effort at all to convince him to help me collect data and put together the projects below.

This post serves as an official announcement for the projects that Aaron and I are working on.  These include the following:

1. MassMine-ing the Hugo Awards:  Social Media Reactions and What the Data Tell Us….

 

Spacefaring Kitten on Spacefaring, Extradimensional Happy Kittens

“’The Day the World Turned Upside Down’ by Thomas Olde Heuvelt” – May 29

I was pleased that a Lightspeed story made it. It’s a very good magazine that won the semiprozine Hugo last year, after all, and it has published some pretty awesome fiction in 2014 as well. I’m quite sure I nominated two stories from the magazine for the Hugos, plus the whole magazine in the semiprozine category, plus the editor John Joseph Adams in the editor category.

I don’t read absolutely everything LS publishes, though, and Olde Heuvelt’s story was new to me. Naturally, I had some great expectations. Too bad this story let them down.

 

Rebekah Golden

“2015 Hugo Awards Best Short Story: Reviewing Single Samurai” – May 29

It’s fairly obvious that Diamond had a vivid image of this story in his head, the problem is that at the end I did not. I think some of this is related to the fact that Diamond so utterly identified with the character he was writing that he did not see the foibles of the character’s personality.

 

Dave Noonan

“2015 Hugo Semi Pro Zine” – May 29

Wow! A whole category with no Puppy Shit smeared all over it.  I didn’t intend to read these because I did want to read more shitty short stories. So Beneath Ceaseless Skies sat open in my Moon+ for a couple of days before I started reading and then… shock!  The first story was good! The second story is good too!  Holy crap. So I went looking and discovered the Puppies apparently couldn’t find any right-wing nutjob Semi Pro Zines so I may actually get to read some decent stuff. Finger’s crossed.

 

Dave Noonan

“2015 Hugo Fanzine” – May 29

My notes and rankings for the Best Fanzine category of the 2015 Hugo Awards.

  • Journey Planet
  • Tangent Online
  • The Revenge of Hump Day

 

Adult Onset Atheist

“SNARL: Best Dramatic Presentation, Long Form”  – May 29

I watched all of these movies before I saw them on the Hugo nominations list. They are all good movies, and worth a bit of hard earned down-time to watch. I get to review them without reflexively asking “Would anybody want to watch/read this?”, and get down to the more important business of defining my own personal opinion. All good reviews are subjective because they arise in part from the reviewer’s enjoyment of the subject, and resonate with the reviewer’s reasons for picking up the subject of the review to begin with.

 

Lis Carey on Lis Carey’s Library

“The Zombie Nation, by Carter Reid” – May 29

A complete loss, in my opinion.

 

Aziz Poonawalla on Beliefnet

“G. Willow Wilson’s Ms. Marvel nominated for Hugo Award — and needs YOUR support”  – May 29

In 2013, Saladin Ahmed’s book Throne of the Crescent Moon was nominated for Best Novel, losing out to John Scalzi’s Redshirts – a tough loss indeed, but a significant honor in its own right. And way back in 1980, Steven Barnes’s The Locusts (co-written with Larry Niven) was nominated for Best Novelette, losing out to George R.R. Martin. There may be other Muslims whose works were nominated that I am overlooking, but to the best of my knowledge no Muslim has ever taken home the iconic Huge Rocket statue.

This year, however, that all could change: Ms. Marvel Volume 1: No Normal, written by G. Willow Wilson, is nominated for Best Graphic Story. This is huge news and a tremendous recognition by the SF/F community of the cultural, literary, and social impact of Ms. Marvel – which is almost impossible to summarize, but this article at the venerable AV Club magazine is a pretty good primer: “One year later, Ms. Marvel’s influence is felt far beyond the comics page”

 

Charlie Jane Anders on io9

“Someone Will Livetweet Vox Day’s Debut Novel For Charity” – May 29

Before Theodore “Vox Day” Beale was the central figure in the Sad/Rabid Puppies Hugo Awards hacking, he wrote a series of religious-inspired fantasy novels for Pocket Books. And blogger Natalie Luhrs is going to live-tweet his debut novel, Eternal Warriors: The War in Heaven, for charity….

 [Update: In case it’s not clear, she will livetweet her reaction to the book, one page per tweet, not the actual text of the book.]

 

Natalie Luhrs on Pretty Terrible

“Bad Life Decisions: Make Me Read Theodore Beale” – May 29

So you can help me raise some money for RAINN (or a charity in your country which does the same sort of work).  For every $5 donated to RAINN, I will read and  live tweet one page of this 399 page delight with the hashtag #readingVD. I’ll also re-publish the tweets and add additional commentary by chapter here at Pretty Terrible–those’ll go up as I finish each chapter (there are 29 chapters in the book, as well as a prologue and an author’s note).

However, I’m not going to read any of it until we’ve raised at least $500–and I’d like to raise that by June 11.  If we manage to raise $2,000 I will read the entirety of Theodore Beale’s Eternal Warriors™: The War in Heaven™.

 

Alexandra Erin on Blue Author Is About To Write

“Rabid Puppies Review Books: HAROLD AND THE PURPLE CRAYON” – May 29

harold

Reviewed By Special Guest Reviewer Theophilus Pratt (Publisher — Hymenaeus House)

This instructive tale tells of a young man who all by himself creates a road which he then travels down, makes a mountain which he climbs, then saves himself from falling by conjuring a balloon which he hangs onto until he can bring into being a basket capable of supporting himself. His boundless creativity allows him to shape a whole civilization of buildings until, amusingly, he re-creates the very house he started out from and sleeps the sleep of the just, knowing that everything he has in life was fashioned by his own hand.

Amusingly, this book was sold to me as a work of fantasy when it is in fact the most realistic work of fiction I have ever encountered. If anything, it was too realistic to be fiction, a fact I found very amusing. Flipping through its pages proved to be instructive, as I began to see it was nothing more than a thinly veiled if amusing allegory for my own inimitable life.

Did I not provide myself with the only light I ever needed to walk by, as Harold did? Have I not always made my own road, and even left it when even it proved too stifling to my boundless intellect? Has not my dizzying intellectual magnitude taken me to the height of peaks so high that even I cannot long find purchase upon them? And when I fall, whom do I rely upon to prop myself up except myself?

 

Kyra in a comment on File 770 – May 29

Turning and turning in the widening blog
The puppy cannot hear the puppeteer;
Things fall apart; the Hugos cannot hold;
Mere doggerel is loosed upon the fans,
The canine tide is loosed, and in Spokane
The ceremony of awards is drowned;
The fest lacks all conviction, while the trolls
Are full of passionate intensity.

Surely some aggravation is at hand;
Surely the Slated Hugos are at hand.
The Slated Hugos! Hardly are those words out
When a vast image of a nominee story
Troubles my sight: a waste of desert prose;
A text with turgid body and an end wholly bland,
A phrase blank and meaningless about guns,
Is moving its dull verbs, while all about it
Wind shadows of the indignant reviewers’ words.

The darkness drops again but now I know
That sixteen nominees in fiction slots
Were read like nightmares in my shaking Kindle,
And what rough book, its hour come round at last,
Slouches towards Sasquan for its award?

606 thoughts on “The Bark Between The Stars 5/29

  1. ftumch: for the final time, I am not a minion

    I agree. I’m thinking “stooge” is more accurate.

  2. Jim Henley on May 30, 2015 at 8:00 pm said:
    @Bruce Baugh:

    I confess: I’m fascinated by the right-wing tendency to make up insults and insist that the rest of us used them against the complainer, when we didn’t do anything of the sort.

    Yup! Plus the one-way sensitivity of starting by telling other people to “gourd their loins” and then whingeing when their interlocutors get a little short with them.

    Willful and repeated self-insulting reminds me of people like that woman during the first Barack Obama presidential campaign who carved a “B” into her own cheek and made up a fake story of evil black Obama supporters surrounding and attacking her, only the story unraveled because she had carved the “B” *backwards* because she did it looking into a mirror.

    Some people go to an awful lot of work to gin up self-pity.

  3. Nel C,

    Where this additional bit of allegory breaks from the present circumstance is that it’s not the reader who is offering the Puppy the choice, it is the Puppy who is offering the choice to the reader (or Fandom). The Puppies have threatened — continue to threaten — to FUBAR the Hugos in exchange for being let out of the closet; of course, they could leave the closet any time they wished.

    The story, being an explicit riff off of one of Paulk’s blog posts, was pretty obviously about the Mad Geniuses. When did they threaten to FUBAR the Hugos if they don’t get what they want?

  4. Hmm, so attempting to reason in good faith until it became clear that he was not interested in it, is evidence of exploding heads?

    I will repeat, he appears to be a very confused man.

  5. @Kurt Busiek:

    The idea that he just wandered in here as the neutral he claims to be is, well, about as sensible as his claim that there’s never ever been any discrimination in all of SF.

    I gave him one shot. I actually assumed he was merely confused about who’d said what about “Golden Age” (dammit, no) science fiction and centered the conversation around his declared favorite authors, who include my own. It was the one post he never responded to.

    You blow your one shot, I will treat you accordingly.

  6. >>…but how can you say “scapegoating” has nothing at all to do with the Hugo problem?>>

    You do know that scapegoating involves blaming someone unfairly for something, right? Like blaming the old woman who makes herbal remedies for your cows dying, or something.

    In this case, I think there is scapegoating going on, but it’s not Hugo voters blaming the Puppies for the things they have actually done and said. It’s the Puppies blaming an imaginary cabal for their not getting the awards they feel entitled to.

  7. Kurt Busiek on May 30, 2015 at 8:02 pm said:
    “ftumch,” by the way, has posted at Beale’s blog about the delight of causing anti-Puppies’ heads to explode, at MadGeniusClub about “leftist fuckwittery” and at Correia’s about…I can’t really tell through the oblique sneering.

    The idea that he just wandered in here as the neutral he claims to be is, well, about as sensible as his claim that there’s never ever been any discrimination in all of SF.

    Oh, bless his heart.

  8. >> Hmm, so attempting to reason in good faith until it became clear that he was not interested in it, is evidence of exploding heads?>>

    No, I was unclear. He hasn’t rushed off to post there about his antics here; he was posting that sort of thing weeks ago. He’s wandering in from the Puppy camps to pretend to be neutral and see if he can get enough of a reaction to go back and say “Look how MEAN they were to me! They’re awful!”

  9. Bruce:

    Alas! My computer skills are on a level like Clouseau’s expertise on the Parallel Bars in the Pink Pather movies. ???? ‘Ah, Yes, I remember this now…’

    In any case, I’m vastly relieved you know who I’m talking about, so you’ll have to do the Roof scene in your head (or invoke Peace, who is like some awesome Web-Fu Master, dude!).

  10. Brian Z on May 30, 2015 at 8:02 pm said: …

    Brian Z, on the whole your parodies have been apt and fair, encompassing numerous different viewpoints.

    But your parody of “The Ones That Walk Away From Omelas” cast the Sad Puppies as the abused child in a closet and everyone else, who the Puppies are calling the anti-Puppies, as the horrifying abusers who live off that child’s misery.

    Unlike the satires which have a certain sympathy for all sides, this one is entirely one-sided, and in a ghastly way. It is the SF equivalent of referring to concentration camps and ovens. There is no way to tell this story without casting one side as entirely devilish and in the wrong.

    Is that the stand you wish to take?

  11. JJ:Jim Henley: Plus the one-way sensitivity of starting by telling other people to “gourd their loins”

    I have to admit I got a huge laugh out of that malapropism. Starting out with one of those does not exactly enhance one’s credibility.

    I imagine the loins would be one of the last places you’d want to get gourded.

  12. Kurt Busiek: “ftumch,” by the way, has posted at Beale’s blog about the delight of causing anti-Puppies’ heads to explode, at MadGeniusClub about “leftist fuckwittery” and at Correia’s about… I can’t really tell through the oblique sneering.

    Oh, well, then he’s definitely used to blogs where people get away with making any crazy-ass statement they wish without being challenged on it.

  13. Kurt: That’s another thing that fascinates me about a lot of right-wingers I’ve encountered lately. They seem genuinely shocked with surprise that others can see what they post in public places, and may well go look. They’re like children who think that they disappear when they put their hands in front of their face, and that wearing one of their parents’ hats makes them indistinguishable from adults. It boggles me that there are these whole communities of adults who have that kind of relationship with curiosity about facts and awareness of what’s available to the public.

  14. Laura Resnick –

    “… Maybe he’s really a brave, sensitive, complex humanitarian of profound moral integrity who just happens to be trapped (indeed, completely submerged) in the body of a vicious, racist, homophobic misogynistic troll who comes across as a perfect storm of severe character defects and untreated mental illness? …”

    You mean like this guy?

  15. The point is that the story you’ve chosen to pastiche does not, in any way, parallel the current situation. You’re trying to shoehorn a square peg into a round hole and failing miserably.

    JJ, I know your opinion on this. I’d like to know how Ann Somerville feels.

    Kurt Busiek,

    You do know that scapegoating involves blaming someone unfairly for something, right?

    “Fairness” does seem to be coming up a lot, yes.

    I think there is scapegoating going on, but it’s not Hugo voters blaming the Puppies for the things they have actually done and said. It’s the Puppies blaming an imaginary cabal for their not getting the awards they feel entitled to.

    Re: imaginary cabals, I saw that in the parts where the pup refuses to open the unlocked door and where the supporters demand an award for it. What did you see in those parts?

    Re: blaming people for things they haven’t actually done slash said, I’ve seen a fair amount of that going around. Do you mean there has been no blaming at all, or do you think the blaming has been minor or irrelevant?

  16. >> Americanid Gods.>>

    Caninsi Boys?

    The Hugo is a Cave in the Black Mountains?

    The Day I Swapped My Ethics for Two Hugos?

  17. I’ll catch up on the comments tomorrow, just logging in now because I need my faith in short stories restored. I just finished the last of the “best” short stories for 2015 Hugo Awards.

    Could someone point me to really Hugo worthy short stories? I’m willing to pay if I have to, I just need to feel better. Any year I don’t care.

  18. >> blaming people for things they haven’t actually done slash said, I’ve seen a fair amount of that going around. Do you mean there has been no blaming at all, or do you think the blaming has been minor or irrelevant?>>

    I think you should probably reread my post, taking special note of where I use the word blame or forms of it, and see if you can figure out if I meant either of the options you’re asking about.

    Because I think you’re sealioning again, and on top of that trying to imply things you can later pretend you didn’t say. I have no interest in that. If you want to say something, say it, don’t try to Socratically lead me to where you want to go by being dishonest about what I said.

  19. Brian Z.: I’d like to know how Ann Somerville feels

    She’s already told you how she feels — and in typical Brian Z. fashion, you refuse to listen to her.

  20. Rebekah Golden: Do novelettes count? Because Ruthanna Emrys’s “The Litany of Earth” on Tor.com last year rocked my world.

  21. Kurt:

    Would you like me to tell you why they wear those gourds, hmm?

    Consider this carefully. Some things you can’t unknow! 🙂

  22. This is a digression but for the life of me I am stuck not remembering the name or author of a book – it’s somewhat of a guilty pleasure so folks may not have read it.

    Synopsis: 2 main characters – the first a female guardian of an advanced county who is sent out on a ‘punishment’ mission of bodyguarding after striking another member of the guard severely; the second an exiled member of the same advanced country slumming who seems charismatic but slightly amoral. He is brought back to query the religious believers of cults which is outlawed in the advanced country think of him like an auditor. The plot twist is gods are actually coming back and looking for ‘avatars’ to play their game using humans as pawns on the ‘chessboard’. He is approached by what seems to be Odin which he conceals as he does not want to people to think he is crazy and she is courted by several Greek goddesses.

    I am stuck it’s a light sci-fi romance paranormal book but I can’t recall it.

  23. >> Would you like me to tell you why they wear those gourds, hmm?>>

    That’s okay, I’m good.

  24. Rebekah, someone earlier posted a link to an excellent short story about a serial killer who was reprogrammed. I believe that it was by Elizabeth Bear and it may have been published last year.

  25. Rebekah, I would recommend Women of Wonder, the whole series, Tanith Lee’s Red as Blood, Yoon Ha Lee’s Conservation of Shadows, and Zen Cho’s Spirits Abroad.

  26. Peace,

    Unlike the satires which have a certain sympathy for all sides, this one is entirely one-sided, and in a ghastly way.

    If I wanted to write a ghastly parody like you are describing, I might have chosen a different topic unrelated to the Hugo controversy – and there are certainly places one could go with that approach. But I didn’t. I’m talking about various people feeling self-righteous about the Hugo awards.

    Did pointing how ridiculous it would be to apply Kate Paulk’s Hugo-worthy criteria to a lot of SFF help? I put in the paragraph explaining that the pup’s supporters felt it was a terrible crime to deny the pup a fan award. I might add that the awards banquet serves cheese, barley cakes and dried figs.
    What else do you think I could add to strike a balance?

  27. @Shambles – I think I read half of the first chapter of that book in a store in the recent past, maybe 2-3 years. No idea who wrote it, though. It looked interesting.

    The woman was some kind of hi-tech special forces type and the man was a drunken minor diplomat of some kind, right?

  28. Rebekah, if you want an oldie but goodie — Zelazny’s “A Rose for Ecclesiastes” is a favorite, or Asimov’s “Nightfall.”

  29. She’s already told you how she feels — and in typical Brian Z. fashion, you refuse to listen to her.

    JJ please stick to deflecting questions I’ve asked you, not those I’ve asked somebody else. Thanks.

  30. Could someone point me to really Hugo worthy short stories?

    I second this request. I have my opinions and all but all the talk about the novels was too easy, and it is the short story category that is really the most broken.

  31. @Maximillian

    Yes that is it exactly ! I got it from the library so there is no physical copy to jar a recollection.

  32. @ Kurt Busiak – Dangit, I was all excited that somebody had accidentally referenced penis gourds and was gonna expound, too.

    Beaten to the gourd! Story of my life…

  33. Rebekah Golden

    “… Could someone point me to really Hugo worthy short stories? I’m willing to pay if I have to, I just need to feel better. Any year I don’t care. …”

    Hie thee to your bookshelf and pull out your copy of Bradbury’s collection The Machineries of Joy, and read the title story

  34. >> Could someone point me to really Hugo worthy short stories? I’m willing to pay if I have to, I just need to feel better. Any year I don’t care.>>

    I don’t know whether I’d say Hugo-worthy, exactly, but:

    http://smile.amazon.com/Curiosities-Collection-Stories-Fiction-Young/dp/1467716235/ref=sr_1_1?ie=UTF8&qid=1433044311&sr=8-1&keywords=the+curiosities

    That’s a collection of short stories by Tessa Gratton, Brenna Yovanoff and Maggie Stiefvater, and not only do you get a set of interesting stories, the three of them comment on each other’s stories as well, giving some interesting insights into how and why the stories are shaped.

    I’d also recommend:

    http://smile.amazon.com/Jigs-Reels-Stories-Joanne-Harris/dp/0060590149/ref=sr_1_1?ie=UTF8&qid=1433044456&sr=8-1&keywords=jigs+and+reels

    Many of the stories are delightful, especially “Gastronomicon.”

    And in the even you haven’t read it already:

    http://smile.amazon.com/Stories-All-New-Tales-Neil-Gaiman/dp/0061230936/ref=sr_1_1?ie=UTF8&qid=1433044508&sr=8-1&keywords=stories+gaiman

    kdb

  35. Rebekah Elizabeth Moon’s A Parrion of Cooking and The Last Lesson both in Deeds of Honor were very good.

  36. To offer one more ftumchism, this is from a comment on Sarah Hoy’s blog last year:

    “But this is the Left you’re talking about: employees are slaves to these people.”

    Yes, he was quite neutral…

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