The best defense is a good offense and Neil Clarke, Publisher/Editor of Clarkesworld Magazine, refuses to let the Best Semiprozine Hugo category go down without a fight. He has launched Save the Semiprozine to rally opposition to the rules change that could end the Hugo Award in that category if it is ratified at this year’s Worldcon.
This could be the last year the Hugo Award for Best Semiprozine is offered. We respectfully disagree with the reasons presented by those pursuing this goal. Through this blog, we hope to make the case against voting out the semiprozine category.
The 2009 Worldcon business meeting will vote whether to ratify the rules change initially passed in 2008. Voting is open to Anticipation members who attend the relevant session.
The case for making the change was based in part on there being far fewer semiprozines than fanzines, and that Locus has almost monopolized the award throughout its 25-year history, arguably proving the category is futile.
Since last fall, the community of people who produce small science fiction magazines has been trying to voice effective resistance to the prospect of losing what opportunity they have to complete for a Hugo. Despite Locus taking a Brobdingnagian share of the Hugos they don’t share in the spirit of nihilism that flavored last year’s fanpolitical discussions. They seem willing to take their chances. A Hugo nomination may help them with marketing, regardless of the prospect for actually winning.
Cheryl Morgan, currently on the Clarkesworld staff, contributed ideas to the new site and her blog supplies additional background.