Pixel Scroll 9/11 ETA: The Scrollers Support Me in Email

(1) James H. Burns recalls the effects of 9/11 on Broadway in “Delphinus, in the Northern Sky” (posted in 2012).

It’s eleven years later, and we’re still here. Still able to perform, or write, or otherwise create, or, also wonderful, to be able to embrace those passions.

I was just thinking of the guts it took for the actors who resumed their places on the stage so soon after that day in September.

Remember the courage it took, for some of us, just to walk down the street. And these folks were resuming one of the toughest challenges, in the arts.

(2) Melbourne has a website that maps every one of its city trees. Citizens can report a particular tree’s condition and get the city to attend to it. The website has a button “Email this tree,” short for “Email the city about this tree.”

Except, as fans will do, many take the label literally, and email the tree about life, the universe, and everything.

People around the world have been e-mailing trees in Melbourne to confess their love.

As part of the Urban Forest Strategy — implemented to combat the steady decline of trees following a 13 year drought — the city assigned all of the Melbourne’s 77000 trees individual emails.

The idea was residents could use these emails to report trees that had been vandalised or were in a severe state of decline.

Only, people decided to make another use for the email and began writing love letters to their favourite trees….

Weeping Myrtle, Tree ID 1494392

Hello Weeping Myrtle,

I’m sitting inside near you and I noticed on the urban tree map you don’t have many friends nearby. I think that’s sad so I want you to know I’m thinking of you.

I also want to thank you for providing oxygen for us to breath in the hustle and bustle of the city.

Best Regards,

N …

Variegated Elm, Tree ID 1033102

Dear Elm, I was delighted to find you alive and flourishing, because a lot of your family used to live in the UK, but they all caught a terrible infection and died.

Do be very careful, and if you notice any unfamiliar insects e-mail an arboriculturist at once.

I miss your characteristic silhouettes and beautifully shaped branches — used to be one of the glories of the English landscape — more than I can say.

Melbourne must be a beautiful city.

Sincere good wishes

D

The Urban Forest Strategy will see 3000 new trees planted in Melbourne each year and since its implementation in 2012, 12000 new trees have been added to the city’s urban landscape.

(3) Step inside Crew Dragon, SpaceX’s next-generation spacecraft designed to carry humans to the International Space Station and other destinations.

(4) Major league baseball’s Pittsburgh Pirates welcomed back devoted Batman fan A.J. Burnett by sending up the Bat-Signal.

(5) Need a little adventure in your life? Tor.com is seeking an in-house publicity coordinator.

This person will work with publicity and editorial departments and contacts throughout all of genre publishing, developing plans for comprehensive book coverage on Tor.com and assisting with publisher and author outreach. They will also be responsible for encouraging and moderating conversation between readers on the site and on social media.

This is a full-time position working in our New York office. Ideally, we are looking for a candidate with at least 2 years of publishing experience, who is outgoing, extremely organized, and detail-oriented. Applicants should be both highly enthusiastic and knowledgeable about science fiction and fantasy across a range of media….

(6) Did I forget to mention – issue 24 of Hugo-winning fanzine Journey Planet, the Richard III theme issue, is available online. This issue contains a series of articles by Steven H Silver, Joan Szechtman, Chuck Serface,  K.A. Laity,  Ruth Pe Palileo and  Pixie P.as welll as pieces by editors James Bacon and Chris Garcia. The cover, some interior and technical art work was provided by Autun Purser, a full-time deep sea ecologist, who has created a series of travel posters, advertising travel to destinations from unusual fiction – the “Fantastic Travel Destinations.”

Bosworth_JP _cover_issue24 COMP

(7) Kevin Standlee shares several examples that show why Hugo Administrators aren’t activists.

  1. 1989 and A Brief History of Time (Scroll down and click “further detail” for a bit more information.) In 1989, Stephen Hawking’s A Brief History of Time had sufficient nominations to make the final ballot. The Administrator ruled it ineligible, as the definition of Best Non-Fiction Book (the title of the category now known as Best Related Work) at that time said that the book had to be about “science fiction, fantasy, or fandom,” and thus the Administrator ruled that science books weren’t eligible. This decision was controversial. There were attempted changes to the WSFS Constitution that year that were eventually rejected, IMO mainly because nobody could agree on a consistent proposal. It took several years of argument, but eventually the 1996 WSFS Business Meeting passed (and the 1997 meeting ratified) the change of the category from “Best Non-Fiction Book” to “Best Related Book,” thus:

Any work whose subject is related to the field of science fiction, fantasy, or fandom, appearing for the first time in book form during the previous calendar year, and which is either non-fiction or, if fictional, is noteworthy primarily for aspects other than the fictional text.

Note that ABHOT would have been eligible under this wording.

(8) Naturellement !

(9) These Black Mouse Printing Titanium Steel His and Hers Band Couple Rings are cute as the dickens and go for only $59.

Black Mouse rings

(10) Cat Valente in a comment on Jay Maynard’s award proposal at Black Gate

…Because it’s simply not right to say a good story has no message. Story and message are not separable, hostile camps demanding loyalty only to one or the other. A good story has themes. A good story is about something. A good story is not only about things that happen one after the other, but about why they happen, and how, and to whom, and how all those things interconnect. And all that can happen WITH ray guns and explosions and buxom princesses. It happens literally all the time. One does not kick the other out of bed for eating crackers.

The author always, ALWAYS, communicates their own culture and experience through their fiction. There is no writing without that cultural electricity animating it. It’s not good or bad. It just is. We cannot help it, we are human. To say that Ancillary Justice is message fiction and undeserving but Time Enough for Love is not is to say that some of those communicated experiences are good and should be promulgated and some are worthless and should be cast aside. And I don’t think there’s anything in the world that should be cast aside and never written about.

However, no one, not even the terrible, no good, very bad SJWs, has ever said that the best stories are ones where the “message” overrides the good story. Everyone wants a good story. Everyone wants to sink into a novel and get totally wrapped up in the tale. There is no need to split into camps on this topic because there is literally no argument. Everyone wants the same thing.

The difference lies in the fact that for some people, a story that communicates an experience that they are unfamiliar with, whether a gendered one, or racial, or sexual, or even literary, jars them out of the story and makes it harder to get wrapped up in it. I can even use my powers of empathy to understand that, because it jars me out of a story when I come across a message about how shitty and/or unnecessary women are, because I am a woman and I like to not feel like I am shitty and unnecessary. But unfortunately, for some people, me just writing a story that draws on my life experience IS political, because my experience isn’t theirs, and the central presence of women in a story is, for them, a political act….

(11) Ruth A. Johnston, author of Re-Modeling the Mind: Personality in Balance, was interviewed by L. Jagi Lamplighter at Superversive SF about her interpretation of the Hugo kerfuffle. It’s part of a series – later installments will apply her theory to characters in John C. Wright’s Night Land stories, and “If You Were A Dinosaur, My Love” as well as the larger Hugo/culture war picture.

Part One:  What Forces Drive the SciFi Culture Wars?

Q: In the Afterword to your new book, you suggest that ideas about personality might help us understand “culture wars” by showing how the sides just see the world differently.  What do you mean by “personality-based worldviews”? 

A: The thesis of Re-Modeling the Mind is that our brains can’t process all of the information that comes at us constantly, so each brain organizes itself around more limited options, depending on the neural strengths it already has. When we talk about “personality” we mean these limitations and abilities, which are usually clearly visible when we watch each other. We know ourselves this way, too. We know there are things we simply can’t take in, or if we can take in the facts, we can’t manage them to make decisions. There are things we pay close attention to, and other things we just can’t be bothered with. Personality is this very real neural patterning that filters the world so that it’s manageable.

But this means that our personalities also limit and even blind us to things other people can perceive and manage. We’re all in the same physical world, in the sense that we agree on where the objects are, so that we can avoid running into them. But at a more complex level, we really don’t all live in the same world. Our personalities can have such root-level different views of the world that we can barely have conversations. This is what I’d call a personality-based worldview.

I’m not a science-fiction reader, and I’d never heard of the Hugos until this year. But watching the ferocity of the battles made me feel convinced that at least some of this culture war is provoked by a clash of personality-based worldviews. In other words, probably the leaders and many supporters of each faction share some personality traits so that they all “live” in a similar world. In each faction’s “world,” its values are not only sensible but the only possible ones. Or if not the only possible ones, the only morally right or safe ones. This is why it’s so hard to have a conversation. It’s self-evident to each faction that its values are right, and the arguments offered by the other faction hold no water in their worldview. A lot of people on both sides feel that if So and So wins a prize, moral right or wrong will be rewarded.

(12) David Gerrold on Facebook is working out his own communication theory to explain “the recent squabble in SF fandom.”

…We now live in a world of self-organizing subcultures. Some of them are positive — organizing around the desire to address various challenges. Some of the clusters are negative, organizing around cult-like behaviors. Some are in the business of disseminating valuable information — some are in the business of misinformation and propaganda.

There’s a psychological phenomenon about new media — we give it gravitas. The first decade of any medium is the decade of education and assimilation. ie. We have to learn how to filter the information, we have to learn how to recognize that it is not an access to truth, merely one more way to be massaged. Example: The 1938 Orson Wells “War of the World” broadcast and panic. That happened while radio was still in its infancy for most listeners.

The internet is experiencing a prolonged childhood — most of us are still somewhere on the learning curve. We still trust too much of what we’re seeing on our computer screens, because we haven’t learned how to distrust it yet.

That’s the context in which we’re all operating. We’re being assaulted by an avalanche of data — we have to figure out how to mine it for actual information.

We have built the kind of technology that gives every person on the planet access to vast libraries of information and the ability to communicate with people all over the globe. But even if we’ve built a global village, we haven’t yet learned how to live in it. We’ve brought our prejudices and our beliefs and our parochial world-views.

Here, on this continent, we’ve built a cultural monomyth that carries within it the seeds of our own destruction — the mythic hero. We believe in John Wayne, the strong man who comes to rescue us. It’s a variation on the Christ myth. Or Superman. Or Batman. We’re incapable of being responsible, we need a daddy figure to sort things out for us. (The savage deconstruction of this monomyth is a movie called “High Noon.” It’s worth a look.)

Belief in superheros is an adolescent fantasy — it’s a way of abnegating personal responsibility. Whatever is wrong with the world, the Justice League, the Avengers, SHIELD will fix it.

The counterpoint is that whatever is wrong with the world — it’s not us. It’s THRUSH or SPECTRE or HYDRA or some other unnamed conspiracy. It’s always a conspiracy. …

(13) Steve Davidson has an advanced scouting report on next year’s Retro Hugos, which will be voted by members of MidAmeriCon II for eligible work from 1940.

But when it comes to the editor’s categories, we’re going to be restricted to one, that for Short Form.

Of course Campbell is the natural choice here, but take a minute to consider everyone who is eligible:

Mary Gnaedinger – Famous Fantastic Mysteries, Fantastic Novels (reprints)

Raymond A. Palmer – Amazing Stories, Amazing Stories Quarterly (reprint), Fantastic Adventures

Mort Weisinger – Captain Future, Startling Stories, Thrilling Wonder Stories

Frederik Pohl – Astonishing, Super Science Stories

F. Orlin Tremaine – Comet

Charles D. Hornig – Future Fiction, Science Fiction, Science Fiction Quarterly

Martin Goodman – Marvel Tales/Marvel Stories

Malcolm Reiss  -Planet Stories

John W. Campbell Jr. – Astounding Science Fiction, Unknown

Farnsworth Wright – Weird Tales

None of the other editors had anything approaching the budget that Campbell had, yet Pohl, Hornig and Weisinger managed to put together some very fine issues from time to time (often relying on friends for copy at cut-rates), while Malcolm Reiss practically gave birth to the sword and planet sub-genre (not to mention introducing us all to Leigh Brackett!) with Planet Stories and several of the other magazines had a material impact on the field – if only by keeping certain authors and artists barely fed.

[Thanks to Mark (wait, not that one, the other one), L. Jagi Lamplighter, Martin Morse Wooster, and John King Tarpinian. Title credit to File 770 contributing editor of the day Brian Z.]

299 thoughts on “Pixel Scroll 9/11 ETA: The Scrollers Support Me in Email

  1. @MDW:

    “Brackets are about the journey, not the destination.”

    … and the train departs from
    1. Perdido Street Station (Gosh – thought this was older)

    Far too many that I haven’t read, but I can vote for:

    3. Ash (British writer, so British publisher’s single-volume edition. You got me all excited at the thought of a Mary Gentle book I didn’t know about, but then …)
    5. A Storm of Swords
    8. Night Watch
    9. The Eyre Affair.

    Both the Walton and the Powers are sitting on my Kindle waiting to be read, along with far too many other books.
    .

  2. I’m going to let you finish, Cedar, but Vox Day wrote the worst dialogue of all time.

    “Do it,” she murmured, her face pressed against his chest. “Do it now, my love.”
    “How can you ask it of me?” His voice was filled with anguish. “Why did you not let me send you away with them?”
    “He will be safer without me. They would know. They would break me.”
    “They cannot break what they do not find.”
    “They know I am yours. They would hunt me down. And besides, I will not live without you!”
    He pulled away from her, looked down at her, stroked her long, pale hair. Tears filled his eyes as he smiled at her. “How fierce you are. How beautiful.”
    She looked up at him and returned his smile. Her eyes were dry and fearless.
    “Have courage, my lord. I regret nothing. Not a single moment.”
    He wiped at his eyes. “The dream is dead, but it was glorious indeed.”
    “Then you must give me a glorious pyre, my love. My body cannot be found. They must never learn I bore you a child.”
    “Not a child, my love. A son. Our son.” The man nodded and caressed her cheek. “They will love him. They will raise him as their own. But he will learn the truth in time.”
    “Blood will tell,” she agreed. “Blood will always tell.”

    “I loved you from the moment I laid eyes upon you. From the beginning to the end.” She laughed and shook her head.

    “No, my lord, there is no end. You are mine and I am yours , from the beginning of time to the end of whatever lies waiting on the other side of the grave.”

    “There will be no grave for you, my love. My wife. My life. I would burn all the earth and sky if it would save you now.”

  3. Alright here we go !

    HEAT ONE – DAWN OF A NEW MILLENIUM

    1. HORRIBLE THINGS IN THE BIG CITY
    Perdido Street Station, China Mieville
    Something from the Nightside, Simon R. Green

    I have never read the Green but I loved the Mieville when I first read it.

    2. THE TRUE QUEEN IN DISGUISE
    The Bone Doll’s Twin, Lynn Flewelling
    The Tower at Stony Wood, Patricia McKillip

    Abstain, I have read neither book – I like both authors so I don’t know how to adjucate this bracket.

    3. KINGDOM THAT NEVER WAS, KINGDOM THAT NEVER WILL BE
    Lost Burgundy, Mary Gentle
    Bold As Love, Gwyneth Jones

    Aka Ash – Mary Gentle is a great author and this is a wonderful book.

    4. EPIC STORIES
    The Salt Roads, Nalo Hopkinson
    Ship of Destiny, Robin Hobb

    I feel Nalo may be under-read, she is a great writer and I must vote for this book which was great.

    5. CRY HAVOC AND LET SLIP THE DOGS OF WAR
    Deadhouse Gates, Steven Erikson
    A Storm of Swords, George R. R. Martin

    I have to give Erikson some love, before GRRM slays him in the bracket.

    6. SOMETHING IS HAPPENING HERE BUT YOU DON’T KNOW WHAT IT IS
    The Portrait of Mrs. Charbuque, Jeffrey Ford
    Declare, Tim Powers

    I hope we have other Ford novels in the bracket. I have to go for Declare, its an awesome book, though my favorite Powers book is the first one I read – the Drawing of the Dark.

    7. THE DROWNED ISLAND
    Point of Dreams, Melissa Scott and Lisa A. Barnett
    Galveston, Sean Stewart

    I really like this series of books by Melissa Scott and she has written other works that are SF and Fantasy that are worth reading. If this is a new author for you, please start looking for other books by her.

    8. INEVITABLE MATCHUP
    Day Watch, Sergei Lukyanenko
    Night Watch, Terry Pratchett

    It has to be Pratchett.

    9. BOOKS ABOUT BOOKS
    The Eyre Affair, Jasper Fforde
    The Shadow of the Wind, Carlos Ruiz Zafon

    It may not be pure fantasy but the book is beautifully written.

    10. THIS DOOR LEADS SOMEWHERE STRANGE
    Coraline, Neil Gaiman
    House of Leaves, Mark Z. Danielewski

    This was a trippy read. It’s not known well enough.

    11. THE TERRIFYING COURTS OF THE FAE
    Summer Knight, Jim Butcher
    Tithe, Holly Black

    I have to give Butcher some love, they are potboilers but they are fun ones.

    12. RECOVERING FROM THE WORST
    Fire Logic, Laurie J. Marks
    White Apples, Jonathan Carroll

    Tie. No Abstain. Its been too long since I read these books. I think I liked the Marks better but its been too long.

    13. BEYOND THE GATES OF DEATH
    Abhorsen, Garth Nix
    The Lovely Bones, Alice Sebold

    Abstain.

    14. VAMPIRES VS. WEREWOLVES
    Sunshine, Robin McKinley
    Bitten, Kelley Armstrong

    One of the few vampire books I can read.

    15. PROPER PROPRIETY OR SENSUAL SADOMASOCHISM
    Tooth and Claw, Jo Walton
    Kushiel’s Dart, Jacqueline Carey

    Argh. This is a tie. I am currently reading Tooth and Claw but I really loved Kushiel’s Dart. Its a great book that has an unusual protagonist. I really liked the sex positive view point of a submissive heroine who is powerful.

    16. ATTRACTION KNOWS NO RULES
    The Queen of Attolia, Megan Whalen Turner
    Paladin of Souls, Lois McMaster Bujold

    Bujold, but I have not read the Queen of Attolia and seeing the love for it here, I will put on my TBR list.

  4. > “I have not read the Queen of Attolia and seeing the love for it here, I will put on my TBR list.”

    You should be aware that it is the second book in a series. The first book is also very highly regarded — interestingly, though (to me at least), the second book takes the series in a very unexpected direction compared to the first.

  5. 1. HORRIBLE THINGS IN THE BIG CITY
    Something from the Nightside, Simon R. Green

    5. CRY HAVOC AND LET SLIP THE DOGS OF WAR
    Deadhouse Gates, Steven Erikson

    8. INEVITABLE MATCHUP
    Night Watch, Terry Pratchett

    11. THE TERRIFYING COURTS OF THE FAE
    Tithe, Holly Black

    13. BEYOND THE GATES OF DEATH
    Abhorsen, Garth Nix

  6. I am going to have to do a lot of abstaining, but there are a number of brackets where I’ve either read or tried to read both works, viz.:

    2. THE TRUE QUEEN IN DISGUISE
    The Bone Doll’s Twin, Lynn Flewelling
    The Tower at Stony Wood, Patricia McKillip

    4. EPIC STORIES
    The Salt Roads, Nalo Hopkinson
    Ship of Destiny, Robin Hobb

    7. THE DROWNED ISLAND
    Point of Dreams, Melissa Scott and Lisa A. Barnett
    Galveston, Sean Stewart

    9. BOOKS ABOUT BOOKS
    The Eyre Affair, Jasper Fforde
    The Shadow of the Wind, Carlos Ruiz Zafon

    10. THIS DOOR LEADS SOMEWHERE STRANGE
    Coraline, Neil Gaiman
    House of Leaves, Mark Z. Danielewski
    TIE. I like them both pretty well and can’t say which more.

    11. THE TERRIFYING COURTS OF THE FAE
    (Can I vote against both of these?)

    13. BEYOND THE GATES OF DEATH
    Abhorsen, Garth Nix
    The Lovely Bones, Alice Sebold

  7. HEAT ONE – DAWN OF A NEW MILLENNIUM

    8. Night Watch, Terry Pratchett

    Although if the vote had been for best adaptation the opponent would’ve walked away with it. 😉 If pressed, I’d probably say I like The Trust slightly more (I have both the book and the poster signed, which helps), but Night Watch is the one I used to pimp Pratchett’s novels to one of my best friends, and it worked beautifully. Worthy novel.

    10. Coraline, Neil Gaiman

    Because buttons are a really hard thing to make creepy (unless you’re one of those unlucky souls with a koumpounophobia) and yet it worked.

    13. Abhorsen, Garth Nix

    I loved this series as a tween, so it wins on nostalgia alone. 🙂

    15. Tooth and Claw, Jo Walton

    BECAUSE DRAGONS.

    16. The Queen of Attolia, Megan Whalen Turner

    Because, while Paladin of Souls is really good, so is The Queen of Attolia. I would’ve voted for a tie, but as it is, I’ll try and make it a little more even.

  8. About the brackets, they really are a gift, and I thank you however you decide to do them. I wouldn’t mind if you decided to go at it slower, like every two days (because I am also slower and) because that would maybe give us all more time to talk about the books amid all the “ouch, I love them both” and also, everyone would have time to read all of Megan Whalen Turner and Margo Lanagan and know my pain 😉

    OTOH, more time might just make it more votes to tally, so maybe not good. Anyway, many many thanks.

    Also:

    Heather Rose Jones:
    I stare at my overfilled bookshelves and I certainly remember reading a lot of them, but then I get to these bracket things and wonder if I’ve been living in a parallel time-stream. The reality is more boring:

    This, exactly, only my more boring reality is just the usual problem of too many books and oooh shinies.

    Barry Deutsch:
    On that Black Gate thread, Jay Maynard explicitly admits (once Cat Valente asks him directly) that he’s never read either Ancillary Justice or Lock In, both of which he (prior to admitting he’s never read them) criticized very harshly for being message fic that are All About The Gender.

    He doesn’t seem even slightly abashed, either.

    !!!
    All this “didn’t read it and didn’t like it” from the skunks is kind of awesome in its inanity, but it’s also the only possible explanation for how anyone could claim John Scalzi, whose books are almost too readable, writes “message fiction”. I read Lock In recently, and it’s an excellent book, but he’s so good at the pacing and the banter and the plotting, it’s easy to just think of it as entertaining. Like a very good juggler making it look easy.

  9. Shambles
    Bujold, but I have not read the Queen of Attolia and seeing the love for it here, I will put on my TBR list.

    Our work here is done. (She said, having not even voted yet.)

    Not only is it the second in a series (and I think it’s very different from the first, too), but there are four of six thus far, and she writes slooooowly, so if you love them (and I hope you will), there will be some long and anguished waiting ahead. Each book does actually end, though.

    Laertes:
    I just finished The Long Way To A Small, Angry Planet and it was just a ton of fun. That book has a big heart and a big brain and I though I just now put it down I already miss those people something awful.

    Exactly, that last bit especially. If there’s anything to criticize the book for, it’s that nobody is genuinely unlikable in any way, but somehow she pulls that off without being smarmy or saccharine. It’s very Firefly-like in its rag-tag crew of people you’d like to have a drink with.

  10. > “I wouldn’t mind if you decided to go at it slower, like every two days …”

    Going a bit slower with them is a definite possibility; one reason I took a break from them for a while is that they were verging on eating into my writing time. So I’m determined that at the very least, each day I will be finished for the day before I turn my attention to brackets.

    (Which made a weekend when I am just recovered from the flu enough to be bored but not recovered enough to Frolic Outside seem like a reasonable time to kick them off again.)

  11. I missed the first set of bracket while I was indisposed. I like seeing what people have to say about the books!

  12. Mark on September 12, 2015 at 10:02 am said:
    I checked and the original quote did have a link explaining mislectorist so I think we have to let them off on that one,

    Oh, well – it’s another word they made up – OK, then.

    You know, in another ten or twenty years, the Puppies will have completed their journey to epistemic closure by having switched completely to an entirely new invented dialect: which will be a mercy when it finally arrives – – because all of their complaints about mislectoring chorfing pinkish gamma SJWs will be utterly unintelligible to outsiders.

  13. Just delurking to say a few things:
    – I am so glad I found this place!!! But my TBR mountain is reaching epic proportions.

    – I enjoy the brackets. I don’t participate due to lack of background (I’ve only read 3 of the recent bracket) or lack of time (I can’t stop by here every day) but, as I said, by TBR mountain does not exactly thank you.

    – Finally, can someone explain to me why Dinosaur is seen as some sort of gay manifesto? I keep rereading it and the narrator is clearly identified as female and the victim is clearly identified as male and the assailants are clearly identified as confused as to why they targeted the victim so why is it seen as horribly getting teh gay all over some folks’ straight SF???

  14. 7. THE DROWNED ISLAND
    Point of Dreams, Melissa Scott and Lisa A. Barnett

    9. BOOKS ABOUT BOOKS
    The Shadow of the Wind, Carlos Ruiz Zafon

    10. THIS DOOR LEADS SOMEWHERE STRANGE
    Coraline, Neil Gaiman

    16. ATTRACTION KNOWS NO RULES
    The Queen of Attolia, Megan Whalen Turner
    Paladin of Souls, Lois McMaster Bujold
    (tie)

  15. 1. HORRIBLE THINGS IN THE BIG CITY
    Something from the Nightside, Simon R. Green

    Difficult, but I’m going with Nightside, since I’m a big Green fan.

    2. THE TRUE QUEEN IN DISGUISE

    Abstain

    3. KINGDOM THAT NEVER WAS, KINGDOM THAT NEVER WILL BE

    Abstain

    4. EPIC STORIES
    The Salt Roads, Nalo Hopkinson

    5. CRY HAVOC AND LET SLIP THE DOGS OF WAR
    A Storm of Swords, George R. R. Martin

    6. SOMETHING IS HAPPENING HERE BUT YOU DON’T KNOW WHAT IT IS
    The Portrait of Mrs. Charbuque, Jeffrey Ford

    Mostly a vote by default for Mrs. Charbuque, since I intensely dislike Declare.

    7. THE DROWNED ISLAND

    Abstain

    8. INEVITABLE MATCHUP
    Night Watch, Terry Pratchett

    9. BOOKS ABOUT BOOKS
    The Eyre Affair, Jasper Fforde

    10. THIS DOOR LEADS SOMEWHERE STRANGE
    Coraline, Neil Gaiman

    11. THE TERRIFYING COURTS OF THE FAE
    Summer Knight, Jim Butcher

    12. RECOVERING FROM THE WORST

    Abstain

    13. BEYOND THE GATES OF DEATH
    Abhorsen, Garth Nix

    14. VAMPIRES VS. WEREWOLVES
    Bitten, Kelley Armstrong

    15. PROPER PROPRIETY OR SENSUAL SADOMASOCHISM
    Tooth and Claw, Jo Walton

    16. ATTRACTION KNOWS NO RULES
    Paladin of Souls, Lois McMaster Bujold

  16. Sarah M:

    Finally, can someone explain to me why Dinosaur is seen as some sort of gay manifesto?

    Sometimes people who’ve read neither Dinosaur nor The Water That Falls On You From Nowhere know that they hate both, because their tribe does, and they mix up the reasons.

  17. Because Kyra needs more internets to add to her growing horde:

    HEAT ONE – DAWN OF A NEW MILLENIUM

    1. HORRIBLE THINGS IN THE BIG CITY
    Perdido Street Station, China Mieville
    Something from the Nightside, Simon R. Green

    Have not read Green, but I really have trouble thinking of a book that I like more than PSS, so on the basis of this argumentum ad ignorantiam, I’m voting for Mieville. Who just keeps getting better, as long as you ignore Iron Council, which was good, but not genius.

    2. THE TRUE QUEEN IN DISGUISE
    The Bone Doll’s Twin, Lynn Flewelling
    The Tower at Stony Wood, Patricia McKillip

    Abstain, have not read either

    3. KINGDOM THAT NEVER WAS, KINGDOM THAT NEVER WILL BE
    Lost Burgundy, Mary Gentle
    Bold As Love, Gwyneth Jones

    Abstain, have not read either

    4. EPIC STORIES
    The Salt Roads, Nalo Hopkinson
    Ship of Destiny, Robin Hobb

    Abstain, have not read either. Need to read Hobb.

    5. CRY HAVOC AND LET SLIP THE DOGS OF WAR
    Deadhouse Gates, Steven Erikson
    A Storm of Swords, George R. R. Martin

    Abstain, have not read either. I actually bounced off A Game of Thrones when I tried to read it. I’ll try again, but as much as I appreciate Martin as a member of fandom and as a person, I’m not a huge fan of his writing style.

    6. SOMETHING IS HAPPENING HERE BUT YOU DON’T KNOW WHAT IT IS
    The Portrait of Mrs. Charbuque, Jeffrey Ford
    Declare, Tim Powers

    Abstain, have not read either

    7. THE DROWNED ISLAND
    Point of Dreams, Melissa Scott and Lisa A. Barnett
    Galveston, Sean Stewart

    Abstain, have not read either

    8. INEVITABLE MATCHUP
    Day Watch, Sergei Lukyanenko
    Night Watch, Terry Pratchett

    I love Discworld. I don’t like the books about the Watch. If this had been Thief of Time, well, that would be a no brainer. Night Watch by Lukyanenko is even better, but Day Watch is still good.

    9. BOOKS ABOUT BOOKS
    The Eyre Affair, Jasper Fforde
    The Shadow of the Wind, Carlos Ruiz Zafon

    Jasper Fforde was almost exactly how I imagined him when I met him at a reading. Kind, funny, a great interviewee and a great reader. The only problem is that his favorite cheese is brie. For some reason, this does not fit my picture of the man and thus the rest of my day was slightly off kilter. Which is how it should be when dealing with his work.

    10. THIS DOOR LEADS SOMEWHERE STRANGE
    Coraline, Neil Gaiman
    House of Leaves, Mark Z. Danielewski

    Loved Coraline, House of Leaves didn’t grab me enough for me to steal it from my friend or by a copy.

    11. THE TERRIFYING COURTS OF THE FAE
    Summer Knight, Jim Butcher
    Tithe, Holly Black

    Abstain. I haven’t read Tithe and honestly, Summer Knight just didn’t feel that strong to me.

    12. RECOVERING FROM THE WORST
    Fire Logic, Laurie J. Marks
    White Apples, Jonathan Carroll

    Abstain, have not read either

    13. BEYOND THE GATES OF DEATH
    Abhorsen, Garth Nix
    The Lovely Bones, Alice Sebold

    Abstain, have not read either

    14. VAMPIRES VS. WEREWOLVES
    Sunshine, Robin McKinley
    Bitten, Kelley Armstrong

    Team Constantine! Err, Sunshine is the one Vampire book I will shove at people who don’t like urban fantasy or vampires. It’s the best McKinley book I’ve ever read.

    15. PROPER PROPRIETY OR SENSUAL SADOMASOCHISM
    Tooth and Claw, Jo Walton
    Kushiel’s Dart, Jacqueline Carey

    Abstain, have not read either

    16. ATTRACTION KNOWS NO RULES
    The Queen of Attolia, Megan Whalen Turner
    Paladin of Souls, Lois McMaster Bujold

    Ok, I was wrong about not coming up with a book I liked more than Perdido Street Station. Paladin of Souls is amazing. It manages to be better than The Curse of Chalion, which I would have said was impossible. I need to read the new novella and Bujold still needs to write the last two books in the quintet. (She’s written a book for the Daughter, the Bastard and the Son. Now we only need the Father and the Mother.)

  18. Since House of Leaves is in this bracket (and may not survive to the next) I would be remiss if I did not link to the obligatory xkcd parody.

    (For those who haven’t read the book, that is a very good approximation of what many pages look like.)

  19. Also, I am trying to parse mislectorist and failing. I understand the mis in front means “not” but lectorist isn’t a word. Lectorism I found in a slate article with this: “A lector—besides being a person who reads aloud scriptural passages during a liturgical service—is also a person who explains the subtext of a joke or parable, thus ruining it for everyone.” Thus lectorism, in the article, is the tendency to over explain a joke, thus ruining it. So being a mislectorist or practicing mislectorism seems like actually a good thing. Does Wendig avoid explaining his jokes? Then he practices mislectorism. As I hope, do most people.

    Also, how can one discuss message fiction without looking at one of the most egregious examples of it: C.S. Lewis. I remember feeling betrayed as a teenagers when I tried to re-read what I had thought was simply a delightful fantasy story, only to be hit repeatedly over the head with the message “Christianity is right, all other religions are pagan falsehoods.” It took me until my late twenties to be able to ignore the message and enjoy the stories again.

  20. I’ve been wondering something — in the months and months of all this drama, and the fact that Ancillary Justice (that and Redshirts in the novel category) was a frequent target, did any of the main figures bad-mouthing it ever explain how it won all those other awards?

    I said something about that yesterday, but I find myself really curious as to how that circle was squared. If AJ didn’t deserve a Hugo, it obviously didn’t deserve any of the other awards. So how was that explained?

  21. @Matt Y

    That’s weird, he even put on his blog that he can respect if people dislike his narrative voice.

    You’re making the (as yet unfounded) assumption that anyone at MGC arguing that point has even read his blog.

    As far as I can see, it’s all based on the highly selective reading of both some of Wending’s tweets, as well as the Amazon reviews. Some of the commenters are operating under the strongly held belief that the whole “some reviews were about the gay chars/protagonist” is just some sort of narrative. They were shocked – Shocked I tell you! – when there were actual examples of “ooh teh gays are bad”-type reviews provided.

    The whole Legends/ EU non-canon thing is uninteresting to them, as it seems to me that they don’t actually care about this beyond a way to attack someone who they see as a member of the “SJW clique”.

    ETA: @Jason, Mislectorist is a word C Sanderson made up to mean “being an author who hates (or at least dislikes, disdains, and disregards) their readers. This leads to poor behaviors on the author’s part, and support of tactics by publishers and other support staff that leaves readers out in the cold.”

    As someone said, this is her trying to make “fetch” happen

  22. So I’m looking at the @mglyer Cat Valente has tagged in her twitter….. Man, he’s really let himself go in the last few years…..

  23. You know, I don’t think of myself as a fantasy fan, then I participate and realize I know more than I thought.
    HEAT ONE – DAWN OF A NEW MILLENIUM

    1. HORRIBLE THINGS IN THE BIG CITY
    Perdido Street Station, China Mieville

    2. THE TRUE QUEEN IN DISGUISE
    The Bone Doll’s Twin, Lynn Flewelling

    3. KINGDOM THAT NEVER WAS, KINGDOM THAT NEVER WILL BE
    Lost Burgundy, Mary Gentle

    4. EPIC STORIES
    The Salt Roads, Nalo Hopkinson

    5. CRY HAVOC AND LET SLIP THE DOGS OF WAR
    A Storm of Swords, George R. R. Martin

    6. SOMETHING IS HAPPENING HERE BUT YOU DON’T KNOW WHAT IT IS
    Declare, Tim Powers

    7. THE DROWNED ISLAND
    Galveston, Sean Stewart

    8. INEVITABLE MATCHUP
    Night Watch, Terry Pratchett

    9. BOOKS ABOUT BOOKS
    pass

    10. THIS DOOR LEADS SOMEWHERE STRANGE
    Coraline, Neil Gaiman

    11. THE TERRIFYING COURTS OF THE FAE
    pass

    12. RECOVERING FROM THE WORST
    pass

    13. BEYOND THE GATES OF DEATH
    Pass

    14. VAMPIRES VS. WEREWOLVES
    Pass

    15. PROPER PROPRIETY OR SENSUAL SADOMASOCHISM
    Tooth and Claw, Jo Walton

    16. ATTRACTION KNOWS NO RULES
    Paladin of Souls, Lois McMaster Bujold

  24. 1. HORRIBLE THINGS IN THE BIG CITY
    Perdido Street Station, China Mieville

    2. THE TRUE QUEEN IN DISGUISE
    The Bone Doll’s Twin, Lynn Flewelling

    3. KINGDOM THAT NEVER WAS, KINGDOM THAT NEVER WILL BE
    Abstain

    4. EPIC STORIES
    Ship of Destiny, Robin Hobb

    5. CRY HAVOC AND LET SLIP THE DOGS OF WAR
    A Storm of Swords, George R. R. Martin

    6. SOMETHING IS HAPPENING HERE BUT YOU DON’T KNOW WHAT IT IS
    Abstain

    7. THE DROWNED ISLAND
    Abstain

    8. INEVITABLE MATCHUP
    Night Watch, Terry Pratchett

    9. BOOKS ABOUT BOOKS
    The Eyre Affair, Jasper Fforde

    10. THIS DOOR LEADS SOMEWHERE STRANGE
    Abstain

    11. THE TERRIFYING COURTS OF THE FAE
    Abstain

    12. RECOVERING FROM THE WORST
    Fire Logic, Laurie J. Marks

    13. BEYOND THE GATES OF DEATH
    Abstain

    14. VAMPIRES VS. WEREWOLVES
    Sunshine, Robin McKinley

    15. PROPER PROPRIETY OR SENSUAL SADOMASOCHISM
    Tooth and Claw, Jo Walton

    16. ATTRACTION KNOWS NO RULES
    Paladin of Souls, Lois McMaster Bujold

    Too many abstentions.

  25. snowcrash: So just watched Predestination. Wow. Ok. I now think I need to hunt down the Heinlein it was based on as well.

    It’s really, REALLY short. I thought the movie version actually improved on it considerably (which it would need to have done, to make a successful full-length film).

    “All You Zombies –”

  26. One of the commenters on Maynard’s award proposal decries the use of “No Award”, because it deprives all the nominees of their Participation Award:

    Wild Ape: I don’t like the No Award idea. I think that it would be better if there were degrees of awards depending on percentages of votes won. That way everyone who was nominated wins but the real cream rises to higher levels.

    Everybody gets an award! That way they don’t have to worry about actually striving to make their work worthy of earning an award.

  27. @Jason “Also, I am trying to parse mislectorist and failing.”

    I think she’s taken the “mis” in “misandrist” meaning “hatred of” and put it before “lector” meaning “reader”. Unfortunately for the intended meaning, the “mis” in “misandrist” is a contraction used before a vowel – before a consonant it should be “miso” as in “misogynist”. Mis- by itself, as you say, usually just means “not”.

    http://dictionary.reference.com/browse/miso-

  28. @Lyle Hapwood, I guess that means that all those people who condemn books like Lock In or Ancillary Justice without reading them are the real mislectorists?

  29. OK, so Sanderson is trying to coin a word on the analogy of “misanthropist” and “misogynist”, but using the Latin “lector” instead of a more appropriate Greek root and not understanding that the prefix is miso- with the o dropped only before a vowel. I’m not much of a classicist, but I will try to do a bit better. Classical Greek doesn’t seem to have a direct equivalent to “reader” but the modern word is ??????????. So I think (uncertainly) the proper term would be “misanagnostrist”.

    ETA: damn miscoding of Greek: here’s the dictionary page http://www.wordreference.com/engr/reader

  30. “Lector” isn’t a simple substitution for “reader”, either. If I’m by myself reading a book, I’m not a lector. Now, maybe that’s just baggage the word has picked up since English rifled Latin’s pockets, but if I wanted a word to mean “I hate the people I’m writing this book for” I’d pick something else.

  31. @Cat Valente

    I really like that idea ! It would be a fun way to recognize a book.

    Now I am imagining many years from now the bracketing that might ensue on those categories ….

  32. Re:AJ winning all those other awards (and book two getting nominations). That’s how widespread the SJW influence goes. Not enough puppies qualify for SFWA membership or know about Locus or the Clarke. Plus the puppy leaders are pretty much focused on the Hugos, because it was so easy to game them. Plus SCALZI!

  33. Finally a few I’ve read. And I do mean “few”.

    HEAT ONE – DAWN OF A NEW MILLENIUM

    14. VAMPIRES VS. WEREWOLVES
    Bitten, Kelley Armstrong

    15. PROPER PROPRIETY OR SENSUAL SADOMASOCHISM
    Tooth and Claw, Jo Walton

    16. ATTRACTION KNOWS NO RULES
    Paladin of Souls, Lois McMaster Bujold

  34. I feel so poorly-read when I look at the bracket…let me not go into specifics so you can imagine that I’m exaggerating my failures here.

    Anyway, I’m reading as fast as I can to make up for it.

    On the subject of the tragedy of street trees:

    Our street trees seem to be doing okay, this year. I’m in a community that is suffering less than many in California, but it’s because we don’t buy water from the Sierras. All our water is from here, and we husband it carefully even in good years. Decades ago during that five-year or so drought we had, we got into habits of conservation as a community. Our street trees are all drought-resistant and get (as far as I know) no water, good year or bad. Our water department has been giving away and selling water-saving things for years. Every year, good or bad, we get little notes explaining that we have to save water and suggesting how to do it. And we went into staged water restrictions two years ago–voluntary first–with actual (pretty generous) rationing starting in May 2014. Compare with some of those agricultural towns in the Valley that import all their water–the ones that didn’t initiate any official programs until this summer, and then they were voluntary.

    Consequently, we’re not running out of water this year.

    Honestly, I know that most of the state would be in trouble even if they did all the things we do plus all the other clever things that are being done in other communities. But my point is they’d be in a lot less trouble.

  35. My monumental TBR pile has grown at least another hill this week.

    1. Something from the Nightside, Simon R. Green
    2. The Tower at Stony Wood, Patricia McKillip
    5. A Storm of Swords, George R. R. Martin
    8. Nope, because I’m apparently a heretic
    10. Coraline, Neil Gaiman
    11. Summer Knight, Jim Butcher
    14. Tie, because I loved them both and it would be like picking a favorite child
    15. Tooth and Claw, Jo Walton
    16. See “heretic” above

  36. Bob Roehm:

    Pretty sure it was actually based on All You Zombies, not Lifeline. Certainly a lot more meat to flesh out in Zombies, what with the whole time cop thing going on it the background…

  37. I would go for misacroatirist—hater of the audience. But I’d be a misacroatirist myself to try to coin and deploy such a word.

  38. Nick Mamatas: Your conventions have free Skittles???

    Well, let’s just say I know a SMOF who knows a SMOF…

  39. For whatever it’s worth, I haven’t participated in any of the brackets so far and don’t expect to — my reading habits are apparently a lot more spotty and idiosyncratic than I previously realized.

    And yet, I like seeing the discussion and voting. I have a space key; I can scroll past.

  40. @ULTRAGOTHA:

    I have read House of Leaves and hadn’t seen the XKCD. It was very funny, thanks for the link! (Did I miss the original somewhere in the Slate discussion?)

  41. @OGH: Any chance you could turn on Unicode support on your wordpress install without breaking something? It’s supposed to be not-too-difficult, and it would make writing in foreign scripts much simpler. Interestingly, it works fine in the preview-pane, which means that people get caught out by ???? when they hit ‘post’.

  42. Morat20 on September 12, 2015 at 6:43 pm:

    Torg said that Ancillary Justice won because people voted for it without reading it, and that they did so because Ancillary Justice was written by a woman and did interesting things with language.

    He is apparently incapable of distinguishing between the concepts of gendered words and gendered people.

    Someone posted a link to the comment thread here where all this happened, but I have lost it.

  43. Bracketology: wow, I missed a lot of fantasy in those years. So my limited votes are:

    7. Galveston
    8. Night Watch
    10. Coraline
    11. Tithe
    15. Tooth and Claw
    16. Paladin of Souls

    But they would be much, much easier to keep up with if they had their own posts. Please Mike? Then them what just wants to vote don’t have to plow through pages of old comments to find the next round of bracketses.

    Barry Deutsch: C’mon, we all know how Maynard got famous in the first place. Is this a person who could ever be abashed or ashamed by ANYTHING he did? Nope. Slagging books off without reading them is pretty mild compared to that.

    P’raps Torgo is unfamiliar with languages that don’t have gendered pronouns, like the one the largest number of people on this planet speak.
    P’raps Cedar thinks we have misunderestimated her and her pals.

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