Nice Is Nice

A Worldcon coming to London has prompted some of the field’s most literate voices to speak out about their Hugo preferences.

Martin Lewis, reviews editor of Vector, the critical magazine of the British Science Fiction Association, has begun to discuss his nominees online at Everything Is Nice.

His discussion of the Best Fan Writer category is articulate and well-informed, also risk-taking and edgy. I enjoyed his analysis even though the only opinion we share is that Abigail Nussbaum would make a great addition to the Hugo ballot.

Hands down the best blogger in the field. I am in awe of Nussbaum’s ability to maintain the holy trinity of blogging: writing regularly about a broad range of subjects in depth. Even her brief reading round up posts are more in-depth than a lot of online reviews but she rights at length about books, films and television (and even a bit of Shakespeare). She missed the shortlist by one nomination last year, let’s not make the same mistake in 2014.

He’s also to be commended for writing such a post without advancing his own name as a nominee. So few are able to resist the temptation.

Indeed, if you’re as tired as I am of people plugging themselves for the Hugo, check out what Adam Roberts has to say. He told readers at Sibilant Fricative that he never wants to see another self-pimping blog post

Award season is also the start of the ‘for your consideration’ blogposts, in which writers large and small draw potential voters’ attention to all the things they have published during the relevant period and try, with varying degrees of success, to find endearing or witty ways of making VOTE FOR QUIMBY sound less self-serving than it actually is. I used to find all that blather annoying and vulgar. Nowadays I find it more directly loathly, because it seems to me directly and negatively distorting of the award shortlists that follow.

I saw this paragraph quoted in an e-mail and clicked on the link supposing Roberts’ whole post would be equally earnest. I was willing to pay that price to see a leading writer decry the annual outpouring of awards-inspired narcissism. In fact, the balance of Roberts’ remarks are chatty and humorous and his survey of the pockets of the internet most infected with self-promotion is quite shrewd.

4 thoughts on “Nice Is Nice

  1. I find it ironically amusing to see one of the ” field’s most literate voices” writing, “… she rights at length about …”

  2. I would have fixed his quote as a courtesy had I noticed that, but you already know how infamous my copyediting is.

  3. Two things in common with his choices — all active bloggers and all basically semi-pro.

  4. I stand beside this recommendation 100%

    Aside from his on-going, tireless, and almost entirely uncelebrated work as reviews editor of Vector, Martin is a frequent reviewer for Strange Horizons, a former Clarke Award judge and a contributor to the Encyclopedia of Science Fiction.

    Despite devoting years of his life to supporting the institutions of British Fandom, Martin has maintained precisely the kind of independent spirit you see in his discussion of the fan awards.

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