2017 Hugo Award Finalists

The finalists for this year’s Hugo Awards and John W. Campbell Award for Best New Writer were announced by Worldcon 75 on April 4.

The committee received 2,464 valid nominating ballots (2,458 electronic and 6 paper) from members of the 2016, 2017 and 2018 World Science Fiction Conventions, the second-highest total in history.

With six finalists in each category under a new rule taking effect this year, there is a total of 108 finalists, the most extensive Hugo ballot on record.

The announcement video featured Guest of Honor Johanna Sinisalo; graphic novelist Petri Hiltunen; writer J. Pekka Mäkelä; translator Johanna Vainikainen; Worldcon 75 Chair Jukka Halme, and other members of the Worldcon 75 team.

The final round of voting will open this coming week, and close on July 15. The 2017 Hugos will be presented at the 75th World Science Fiction Convention in Helsinki, Finland, on August 11.

The finalists are:

Best Novel

2078 ballots cast for 652 nominees.

Votes for finalists ranged from 156 to 480.

  • All the Birds in the Sky, by Charlie Jane Anders (Tor Books / Titan Books)
  • A Closed and Common Orbit, by Becky Chambers (Hodder & Stoughton / Harper Voyager US)
  • Death’s End, by Cixin Liu, translated by Ken Liu (Tor Books / Head of Zeus)
  • Ninefox Gambit, by Yoon Ha Lee (Solaris Books)
  • The Obelisk Gate, by N. K. Jemisin (Orbit Books)
  • Too Like the Lightning, by Ada Palmer (Tor Books)

Best Novella

1410 ballots cast for 187 nominees.

Votes for finalists ranged from 167 to 511.

  • The Ballad of Black Tom, by Victor LaValle (Tor.com publishing)
  • The Dream-Quest of Vellitt Boe, by Kij Johnson (Tor.com publishing)
  • Every Heart a Doorway, by Seanan McGuire (Tor.com publishing)
  • Penric and the Shaman, by Lois McMaster Bujold (Spectrum Literary Agency)
  • A Taste of Honey, by Kai Ashante Wilson (Tor.com publishing)
  • This Census-Taker, by China Miéville (Del Rey / Picador)

Best Novelette

1097 ballots cast for 295 nominees.

Votes for finalists ranged from 74 to 268.

  • Alien Stripper Boned From Behind By The T-Rex, by Stix Hiscock (self-published)
  • The Art of Space Travel”, by Nina Allan (Tor.com , July 2016)
  • The Jewel and Her Lapidary”, by Fran Wilde (Tor.com, May 2016)
  • The Tomato Thief”, by Ursula Vernon (Apex Magazine, January 2016)
  • Touring with the Alien”, by Carolyn Ives Gilman (Clarkesworld Magazine, April 2016)
  • You’ll Surely Drown Here If You Stay”, by Alyssa Wong (Uncanny Magazine, May 2016)

Best Short Story

1275 ballots cast for 830 nominees.

Votes for finalists ranged from 87 to 182.

  • The City Born Great”, by N. K. Jemisin (Tor.com, September 2016)
  • A Fist of Permutations in Lightning and Wildflowers”, by Alyssa Wong (Tor.com, March 2016)
  • Our Talons Can Crush Galaxies”, by Brooke Bolander (Uncanny Magazine, November 2016)
  • Seasons of Glass and Iron”, by Amal El-Mohtar (The Starlit Wood: New Fairy Tales, Saga Press)
  • That Game We Played During the War”, by Carrie Vaughn (Tor.com, March 2016)
  • An Unimaginable Light”, by John C. Wright (God, Robot, Castalia House)

Best Related Work

1122 ballots cast for 344 nominees.

Votes for finalists ranged from 88 to 424.

  • The Geek Feminist Revolution, by Kameron Hurley (Tor Books)
  • The Princess Diarist, by Carrie Fisher (Blue Rider Press)
  • Traveler of Worlds: Conversations with Robert Silverberg, by Robert Silverberg and Alvaro Zinos-Amaro (Fairwood)
  • The View From the Cheap Seats, by Neil Gaiman (William Morrow / Harper Collins)
  • The Women of Harry Potter posts, by Sarah Gailey (Tor.com)
  • Words Are My Matter: Writings About Life and Books, 2000-2016, by Ursula K. Le Guin (Small Beer)

Best Graphic Story

842 ballots cast for 441 nominees.

Votes for finalists ranged from 71 to 221.

  • Black Panther, Volume 1: A Nation Under Our Feet, written by Ta-Nehisi Coates, illustrated by Brian Stelfreeze (Marvel)
  • Monstress, Volume 1: Awakening, written by Marjorie Liu, illustrated by Sana Takeda (Image)
  • Ms. Marvel, Volume 5: Super Famous, written by G. Willow Wilson, illustrated by Takeshi Miyazawa (Marvel)
  • Paper Girls, Volume 1, written by Brian K. Vaughan, illustrated by Cliff Chiang, colored by Matthew Wilson, lettered by Jared Fletcher (Image)
  • Saga, Volume 6, illustrated by Fiona Staples, written by Brian K. Vaughan, lettered by Fonografiks (Image)
  • The Vision, Volume 1: Little Worse Than A Man, written by Tom King, illustrated by Gabriel Hernandez Walta (Marvel)

Best Dramatic Presentation (Long Form)

1733 ballots cast for 206 nominees.

Votes for finalists ranged from 240 to 1030.

  • Arrival, screenplay by Eric Heisserer based on a short story by Ted Chiang, directed by Denis Villeneuve (21 Laps Entertainment/FilmNation Entertainment/Lava Bear Films)
  • Deadpool, screenplay by Rhett Reese & Paul Wernick, directed by Tim Miller (Twentieth Century Fox Film Corporation/Marvel Entertainment/Kinberg Genre/The Donners’ Company/TSG Entertainment)
  • Ghostbusters, screenplay by Katie Dippold & Paul Feig, directed by Paul Feig (Columbia Pictures/LStar Capital/Village Roadshow Pictures/Pascal Pictures/Feigco Entertainment/Ghostcorps/The Montecito Picture Company)
  • Hidden Figures, screenplay by Allison Schroeder and Theodore Melfi, directed by Theodore Melfi (Fox 2000 Pictures/Chernin Entertainment/Levantine Films/TSG Entertainment)
  • Rogue One, screenplay by Chris Weitz and Tony Gilroy, directed by Gareth Edwards (Lucasfilm/Allison Shearmur Productions/Black Hangar Studios/Stereo D/Walt Disney Pictures)
  • Stranger Things, Season One, created by the Duffer Brothers (21 Laps Entertainment/Monkey Massacre)

Best Dramatic Presentation (Short Form)

1159 ballots cast for 569 nominees.

Votes for finalists ranged from 91 to 193.

  • Black Mirror: “San Junipero”, written by Charlie Brooker, directed by Owen Harris (House of Tomorrow)
  • Doctor Who: “The Return of Doctor Mysterio”, written by Steven Moffat, directed by Ed Bazalgette (BBC Cymru Wales)
  • The Expanse: “Leviathan Wakes”, written by Mark Fergus and Hawk Ostby, directed by Terry McDonough (SyFy)
  • Game of Thrones: “Battle of the Bastards”, written by David Benioff and D. B. Weiss, directed by Miguel Sapochnik (HBO)
  • Game of Thrones: “The Door”, written by David Benioff and D. B. Weiss, directed by Jack Bender (HBO)
  • Splendor & Misery [album], by Clipping (Daveed Diggs, William Hutson, Jonathan Snipes)

Best Editor – Short Form

951 ballots cast for 191 nominees.

Votes for finalists ranged from 149 to 229.

  • John Joseph Adams
  • Neil Clarke
  • Ellen Datlow
  • Jonathan Strahan
  • Lynne M. Thomas & Michael Damian Thomas
  • Sheila Williams

Best Editor – Long Form

752 ballots cast for 148 nominees.

Votes for finalists ranged from 83 to 201.

  • Vox Day
  • Sheila E. Gilbert
  • Liz Gorinsky
  • Devi Pillai
  • Miriam Weinberg
  • Navah Wolfe

Best Professional Artist

817 ballots cast for 387 nominees.

Votes for finalists ranged from 53 to 143.

  • Galen Dara
  • Julie Dillon
  • Chris McGrath
  • Victo Ngai
  • John Picacio
  • Sana Takeda

Best Semiprozine

857 ballots cast for 103 nominees.

Votes for finalists ranged from 80 to 434.

  • Beneath Ceaseless Skies, editor-in-chief and publisher Scott H. Andrews
  • Cirsova Heroic Fantasy and Science Fiction Magazine, edited by P. Alexander
  • GigaNotoSaurus, edited by Rashida J. Smith
  • Strange Horizons, edited by Niall Harrison, Catherine Krahe, Vajra Chandrasekera, Vanessa Rose Phin, Li Chua, Aishwarya Subramanian, Tim Moore, Anaea Lay, and the Strange Horizons staff
  • Uncanny Magazine, edited by Lynne M. Thomas & Michael Damian Thomas, Michi Trota, Julia Rios, and podcast produced by Erika Ensign & Steven Schapansky
  • The Book Smugglers, edited by Ana Grilo and Thea James

Best Fanzine

610 ballots cast for 152 nominees.

Votes for finalists ranged from 53 to 159.

  • Castalia House Blog, edited by Jeffro Johnson
  • Journey Planet, edited by James Bacon, Chris Garcia, Esther MacCallum-Stewart, Helena Nash, Errick Nunnally, Pádraig Ó Méalóid, Chuck Serface, and Erin Underwood
  • Lady Business, edited by Clare, Ira, Jodie, KJ, Renay, and Susan
  • nerds of a feather, flock together, edited by The G, Vance Kotrla, and Joe Sherry
  • Rocket Stack Rank, edited by Greg Hullender and Eric Wong
  • SF Bluestocking, edited by Bridget McKinney

Best Fancast

690 ballots cast for 253 nominees.

Votes for finalists ranged from 76 to 109.

  • The Coode Street Podcast, presented by Gary K. Wolfe and Jonathan Strahan
  • Ditch Diggers, presented by Mur Lafferty and Matt Wallace
  • Fangirl Happy Hour, presented by Ana Grilo and Renay Williams
  • Galactic Suburbia, presented by Alisa Krasnostein, Alexandra Pierce and Tansy Rayner Roberts, produced by Andrew Finch
  • The Rageaholic, presented by RazörFist
  • Tea and Jeopardy, presented by Emma Newman with Peter Newman

Best Fan Writer

802 ballots cast for 275 nominees.

Votes for finalists ranged from 80 to 152.

  • Mike Glyer
  • Jeffro Johnson
  • Natalie Luhrs
  • Foz Meadows
  • Abigail Nussbaum
  • Chuck Tingle

Best Fan Artist

528 ballots cast for 242 nominees.

Votes for finalists ranged from 39 to 121.

  • Ninni Aalto
  • Alex Garner [See ineligibility announcement here.]
  • Vesa Lehtimäki
  • Likhain (M. Sereno)
  • Spring Schoenhuth
  • Steve Stiles [See announcement adding him here.]
  • Mansik Yang

Best Series

1393 votes for 290 nominees.

Votes for finalists ranged from 129 to 325.

  • The Craft Sequence, by Max Gladstone (Tor Books)
  • The Expanse, by James S.A. Corey (Orbit US / Orbit UK)
  • The October Daye Books, by Seanan McGuire (DAW / Corsair)
  • The Peter Grant / Rivers of London series, by Ben Aaronovitch (Gollancz / Del Rey / DAW / Subterranean)
  • The Temeraire series, by Naomi Novik (Del Rey / Harper Voyager UK)
  • The Vorkosigan Saga, by Lois McMaster Bujold (Baen)

John W. Campbell Award for Best New Writer

933 votes for 260 nominees.

Votes for finalists ranged from 88 to 255.

  • Sarah Gailey (1st year of eligibility)
  • J. Mulrooney (1st year of eligibility)
  • Malka Older (2nd year of eligibility)
  • Ada Palmer (1st year of eligibility)
  • Laurie Penny (2nd year of eligibility)
  • Kelly Robson (2nd year of eligibility)

Declined/Ineligible

The following nominees received enough votes to qualify for the final ballot, but either declined nomination or were found to be ineligible.

Best Dramatic Presentation (Short Form): Game of Thrones: “The Winds of Winter”

(No more than two episodes of any one show may be finalists in this category)

Best Professional Artist: Tomek Radziewicz

(No qualifying publications in 2016)

Best Professional Artist: JiHun Lee

(No qualifying publications in 2016)

Best Semiprozine: Lightspeed Magazine

(Not eligible)

Best Fanzine: File 770

(Declined nomination)

Best Fan Artist: Alex Garner

(Ruled ineligible on April 23, 2017)

Updated: Added “translated by Ken Liu” to the entry for Death’s End. // 04/23/2017: Best Fan Artist nominee Alex Garner was ruled ineligible. His place on the final ballot went to the next highest finisher, Steve Stiles.

323 thoughts on “2017 Hugo Award Finalists

  1. Amazon classifications can be odd, especially for self-published books like the Heartstrikers series, since the authors can choose the categories themselves and using certain keywords can also land you in additional categories.

    I recall Rachel Aaron saying on a podcast somewhere that she originally put the Heartstrikers book in urban fantasy and paranormal romance, only to find them drowning in a sea of werebear romances featuring bare-chested men on the covers, so she used a different category.

  2. For anyone who is interested.

    Netflix just rebooted Stranger Things Season 1
    (8 episodes, approximate run time 6 hours 37 minutes) which is one of the six finalist for this year’s Best Dramatic Presentation (Long Form) Hugo Award.

    While I thoroughly enjoyed this 1980’s throwback mini series the first time around, it did not blow my socks off the way it did other nominating members. Tastes as always will vary. I do recommend giving it a whirl though.

  3. @Kendall

    Sorry about the delay. Had this written a couple days ago.

    I still feel you’re confusing “what people read” and “what they nominate.”

    The two are related, aren’t they? I’m assuming that reading a book comes before nominating it.

    Someone that is influenced by my Goodreads reviews is probably going to read a slightly different range of books than someone influenced by Joe Schmuckatelli’s Big Blog of SFF Stuff. Someone that reads physical books is probably going read a different range than someone reads only electronic books if only because Indy authors tend to lean more heavily on electronic publishing.

    Heck, the algorithm Amazon uses to “recommend” books can shape the experiences of fandom.

    All it takes is one or two sufficiently large megaphones (rhetorically speaking) to subtly shift reading patterns. Those small changes cascade outwards like a Faberge shampoo commercial. The result is that one very good book is displace by another very good book.

    I’m not sure why this is controversial.

    Regards,
    Dann

  4. @Dann
    I think Kendall’s point is that many of us read and enjoy books that they still won’t nominate, because they don’t consider them Hugo-worthy. For example, there are a lot of series that I read and like. Yet I would never consider nominating the individual books for a Hugo, because they cannot stand alone very well or because they are enjoyable popcorn, but not Hugo worthy.

    @Robinareid
    Regarding Rachel Aaron, I think her Paradox books as Rachel Bach are vastly underrated, because they’re not just a cracking good adventure and love story in space with a fabulous heroine, but they’re also Aaron/Bach tackling the general sexism, the hostility to emotions and the tendency to view children as disposable of Campbellian SF, with a few extra jabs against the New Wave.

  5. @Dann:

    I’m with Cora and Kendall here. I liked the book I just finished reading, but wouldn’t for a second consider it for an award – Hugo or otherwise. Ditto the graphic novel I also finished, which brought the infamous Spider-Man Clone Saga to its conclusion (until last year, apparently). Similarly, I watch plenty of movies that I don’t think should receive Oscars, and loads of television shows that shouldn’t get Emmys. (Really, Cutthroat Kitchen is a blast, but an award? No.)

    In fact, I would worry about someone who considers everything they read to be awardworthy. Either their standards or their consumption would strike me as lacking.

    Something awardworthy should make one sit up and go “ooooh” in some way that standard entertainment does not. Very little does – or should – reach that bar for me.

  6. Standback: Thanks for that on Too Like the Lightning; it’s illuminating.

    I certainly don’t want to claim that nothing that stops in mediis rebus is a novel. Hyperion is a good example – it would of course have been very odd to combine that and the sequel in one volume, given that the first volume has such a distinctive structure. Indeed, I would have been quite prepared to accept Blackout as a novel, if the author had said it was one.

    The difference, I would say, is between something that stops at a turning-point for effect – as Hyperion does, or, I would think, The Fifth Season – and something which is split into volumes for convenience, and could have been published as a whole if the economics of publication would allow it. The archetypal example of the second is the later volumes of The Wheel of Time, where the cut-off points seem to be completely arbitrary: but The Lord of the Rings, Ash (single volume in the UK, multi-volume in the US), The Viscount of Adrilankha are all examples of works conceived of as single by their authors that were split up for convenience. My understanding is that TLTL/SS is the same. But if the author has managed to use the division to advantage, all the better.

  7. I think it really comes down to how many plot points did the book manage to resolve? If I feel that major things got resolved, other than a big “kicker” to make me want to read the next book, then I’d feel the books had enough independence to consider nominating them separately. But if almost nothing is resolved (e.g. at the end of “Fellowship of the Ring”) then it seems wrong to nominate what’s clearly an incomplete story.

    For the latter, the practice of using the last volume to give an award to the whole seems reasonable to me. For the former, I still like the idea of a “best book in a series” award which would go to a book (not a series) that was published the current year as part of a series.

  8. For the dragon lovers among us, here are some recs for indie SFF featuring dragons:

    – The Dragon Songs Saga by J.C. Kang: Asian dragons with music. Four books, the last one just came out
    – Dragonsfall by Amelia Smith: Epic fantasy with dragons, trilogy plus prequel
    – Of Cinder and Bone by Kyoko M.: Genetically reengineered dragons in the near future, plus yakuza and an interracial couple. First in a series, as far as I know.
    – The Proving by Marina Finlayson: Australian urban fantasy trilogy with half human/half dragon heroine

  9. @Cora —

    For the dragon lovers among us, here are some recs for indie SFF featuring dragons:

    Speaking of dragons — Any opinions on the Dragonvein books by Brian Anderson? The audiobook for #1 is available right now for just $1.99 if you download the ebook on Kindle Unlimited, so I’m tempted. Also any thoughts about Anthony Ryan’s Waking Fire? I’ve got that in audio already — on Mount TBR.

    I’m afraid I wasn’t impressed with Nice Dragons Finish Last, even though I liked Aaron’s Eli Montpress books very much. Is it worth trying book #2?

  10. @Contrarius
    I haven’t read either of those, sorry.

    As for Rache Aaron/Bach, all her series (Eli Monpress, Paradox, Hearstrikers) are very different from each other, but I like them all. And Julius goes through quite a lot of development in the Heartstrikers series and that development is far from complete at the end of book 1.

    Regarding indie SFF featuring dragons, I also forgot the Tide Dragons series by Sarah Ash.

  11. @Cora & Rev. Bob,

    Me, too. I read many books that are enjoyable, but not really at the top of the genre.

    Even without having read this year’s nominees, I believe that one or two of my nominees were worthy of being in the conversation based on past nominees/winners. But the genre is so large (a good thing!) that it is hard for anyone to reliably survey the entire field. (For values of “in the conversation” that include “didn’t make the cut in the balloting, but were worthy of consideration nonetheless”.)

    Heck, even Locus missed out on Emma Newman’s “Split World” series and totally missed Sebastien de Castell’s work.

    I don’t talk about everything I read. I do talk about the things I read that are worthy of broader attention.

    My only point is that everyone…including me…is subject to a variety of influences.

    Regards,
    Dann

  12. @Dann – My only point is that everyone…including me…is subject to a variety of influences.

    Sure. It’s a big field and no matter how much any one of us reads, we’re not going to gather up all the gold. Plus, one person’s gold is another’s tin. I read the first and second de Castell Greatcoats novels and liked them, but was DNF on the third (it’s been a constant theme this year). I would not have put anything from the series on my ballot, even if I had finished all four books, because the writing doesn’t meet my standards. It’s possible the Locus poll “missed out” for the same reasons.

    There are a few authors I automatically buy, but many of my purchases stem from recommendations here. I don’t read every comment on every scroll, but I read most of them and always check out synopses of recommended books, unless I already know I don’t like the author’s work. When I read your blog post about your Hugo ballot, I was surprised, because those were not things I’d checked out before. Which is all the long way around of saying that if anyone, including you, enthusiastically recommends a book or a story, I will most likely check it out.

  13. @Cheryl S.

    Which is all the long way around of saying that if anyone, including you, enthusiastically recommends a book or a story, I will most likely check it out.

    Thank you….and right back atcha!

    VBR,
    Dann

  14. @Dann
    It’s the natural course of things that a lot of the works we consider award-worthy and worthy of being included in the general genre conversation still don’t make it to the Hugo and Nebula shortlists, the Locus Recommended Reading List (which I rarely agree with, for the record), etc…, either because they are overlooked or because our personal tastes don’t match those of the majority of fandom.

    This year, an unprecedented three of my five best novel nominees made it to the Hugo ballot. And though I’m quite happy with the ballot overall and wouldn’t mind any of the six best novel nominees winning, I still believe that my two overlooked nominees would have deserved consideration as well. For best series, only one of my nominees made it. And while I’m once again not dissatisfied with the Hugo ballot as a whole, I still believe that three of my remaining four nominees definitely would have deserved to be there, because they are long-running, popular and immensely successful series that are overlooked by SFF fandom for some reason.

    Regarding Sebastian de Castell, I enjoyed the Greatcoats book that was in the Hugo voter packet last year and voted him in second place on my ballot. I still think it’s extremely unfair that he finished under No Award, because de Castell was a clear puppy hostage, not a puppy. Nonetheless, I’m pretty sure I wouldn’t have considered nominating the latest book in the Greatcoats series, even if I had read it, because while the first book was fun enough and de Castell shows promise, I don’t consider his novels award-worthy at the moment. I suspect he’s more a candidate for best series than for best novel anyway.

    I get book recommendations from a lot of places: here, other genre sites and reviewers and also from fansites for other genres, e.g. romance sites like Smart Bitches, Trashy Books are pretty good at identifying SFF books with strong romantic elements and a focus on characterisation that many SFF sites will overlook. Also, my tastes are a bit out of tune with many in fandom, so I also know whose recommendations will probably not be to my taste.

    Meanwhile, Amazon’s also-boughts and recommendation algorithms are close to useless for me, because apparently my tastes are too ecclectic for them. For example, they keep recommending Larry Correia to me, probably because I read a lot of urban fantasy, even though I bounced hard off the one book of his that I tried to read. They also insist I will like Charles Gannon and Marko Kloos, because I like Ann Leckie.

    I also think that people sharing book recommendations here and elsewhere as well as projects like the Hugo Wiki, the Hugo Spreadsheet, Rocket Stack Rank, etc… are useful for both letting people know what is out there and what is eligible for awards. Of course, no amount of recommending a book or series can persuade people to nominate it, if it’s not to their taste.

  15. @Dann: “My only point is that everyone…including me…is subject to a variety of influences.”

    See, to me that seems so obvious a point as to be axiomatic. One might as well say that water is wet: yes, okay, fine, but why are you pointing this out? What’s the purpose in the observation?

    Normally, making such a point would be a beginning, a stepping-stone to some larger (and debatable) thesis. If it’s not, why bother?

  16. I was very fond of de Castell’s first Greatcoat book. It was a wonderful Mary Sue-type story with heroic heroes, a nice plot, good writing and full of wit. I’ve only read the first book though, so can’t judge it as a series. The rest of the books are on their way now.

  17. @Rev. Bob

    I don’t know that I can do justice to the question. I know where I’m coming from, but being able to noodle it into a couple of succinct paragraphs probably isn’t in the cards.

    You can see a small piece of it in the most current Scroll with everyone agreeing that opinions will naturally vary. In those kinds of conversations, there is frequently an undercurrent…a thinly veiled assertion…that some differing opinions are less than others because they demur from the dominant position.

    At other times the veil comes off with accusations of racistsexisthomophobeislamophobeetc. flying fast and free to better discount dissenting opinions.

    I’m not accusing you of anything. Just trying to express a small piece of the larger whole. Maybe I’ll find the time to work it into a blog entry of my own sometime soon.

    Stay well.

    Regards,
    Dann

  18. @Dann:

    So there is more to it, but you wanted to hint around rather than stating it plainly. I thought so.

  19. @Rev. Bob

    **sigh** y’know….I was hoping to receive a little more understanding. I’m not being coy for the fun of it.

  20. @Dann:

    My question would be, why be coy at all? You opened the can of worms in the first place…

  21. Dann:

    “In those kinds of conversations, there is frequently an undercurrent…a thinly veiled assertion…that some differing opinions are less than others because they demur from the dominant position.

    At other times the veil comes off with accusations of racistsexisthomophobeislamophobeetc. flying fast and free to better discount dissenting opinions.”

    I’ve found that there is usually a dominant position on what people do not like, but seldom a dominant position on what people do like. And the dominant position on what people do not like is often connected to things like grammar, general skills and also basic human values. Note that I do not write political ideology, because I’ve found that of less importance.

    So after that things have been sorted out because of bad skills and things that grate because of different values, then there’s more of a free for all and a larger acceptance of different tastes.

    And for me something is not only about taste, but about human decency. If you write well, but your writing is being homophobic, you are gone from my reading list. And if someone expresses liking of the work containing the homophobic writing, without acknowledging the homophobia, then I will tend to judge the person according to that.

    And yes, I have judged all puppies who voted for John C Wrights homophobic and hateful screed “Transhuman and Subhuman”.

    And btw, I find that being coy in this kind of discussions is kind of stupid. Because it will seem like defending homophobia or other types of prejudices. It is better to be as concrete as possible about where you think people are being wrong when they judge or accuse others.

    Or if unwilling to do this, skip out on the small hints and vice signalling.

  22. @Dann – You can see a small piece of it in the most current Scroll with everyone agreeing that opinions will naturally vary. In those kinds of conversations, there is frequently an undercurrent…a thinly veiled assertion…that some differing opinions are less than others because they demur from the dominant position.

    Eh. This is an internet community with more shared interests and viewpoints than I generally experience, so here is one of the few places where I’m not automatically an outlier. That means I might be blind to some underlying unfairness, but my impression is that almost all opinions are equally valuable, with the dividing lines being things like pugnaciousness and mistaking opinion for data. Those both elicit a lot of pushback as will, for instance, homophobia and misogyny.

    I think sometimes the pushback can lead to the impression that uniformity of opinion is required, which I don’t think is true. But there is, as in any group, an ethos and a certain amount of casual enforcement of that ethos, one aspect of which seems to be how you state your opinions.

    Saying, “Wow, I really love the Greatcoats series so much, it was on my ballot and I’m not only disappointed that it didn’t get a nomination, I think it’s superior to what made it,” is either going to pass without objection, get affirmed by others who also nominated it, or get a discussion started by someone who thinks your taste is in your ear and wants to tell you why. Phrased in that way, it’s unlikely to be policed.

    Does that make any sense?

    (Parenthetically, “vice signaling” is my new favorite phrase.)

  23. +1 on “vice signalling.”

    Also, I read the first Greatcoats and dug it, but then didn’t read further because of some stuff mentioned downthread (wait, upthread? Previously). But now I’m wanting to go back and read it again. It did have a nice swashbuckly yet dark vibe, like some of my favorite bits of the Gentleman Bastards series.

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