The Dingolarity 6/5

aka Is All of Time and Space Truly Curred?

Pawing through the roundup we find Juan Tabo, S. Harris, Glenn Hauman, David Mack, John Scalzi, Charles Stross, Nick Mamatas, Jeffro Johnson, Barry Deutsch, Mcjulie McGalliard, Russell Blackford, Lis Carey, Rhiannon Thomas, Rebekah Golden, Chris M. Neill and cryptic others. (Title credit goes to File 770 contributing editors of the day Kate and James H. Burns.)

We begin with dueling parodies of Rachel Swirsky’s frequently debated “If You Were A Dinosaur, My Love.”

Juan Tabo and S. Harris on Vox Popoli

“If You Were an Award, My Love” – June 5

If you were an award, my love, then you would be a Hugo™. You’d be a big one, five feet, ten inches, the same height as human-you and twice the height of Regular Size John Scalzi, You’d be made of brass, and wood and plastic, and difficult to take on an airplane as carry on due to enhanced security precautions. Your eyes wouldn’t exist, because you were a rocket, stupid.

If you were a Hugo®, then I would become Taller, Stronger John Scalzi so that I could spend all my time with you. I’d bring you raw chickens and live goats, if you were into that kind of thing.  I’d make my bed right under the trophy case, in the basement where my wife lets me sleep. When I couldn’t sleep, I’d sing you lullabies. If I sang you lullabies, I’d soon notice how you were still a statue. You’d just sit there, because you were still a statue.


By Glenn Hauman and David Mack on Crazy 8 Press

“If You Were A Puppy, My Sweet” – June 5

If you were a puppy, my sweet, you would be a wild one. You’d be big and neutered, just like human-you. You’d bound from place to place, unburdened by any thought of consequences, full of energy and bereft of conscience. Some would delight in your antics, your perverse rejection of dignity. Others would quail from your manic slobbering and call you a nuisance, but you would be excused, because that’s just how puppies behave….

If you were sad and rabid, I would bring you with me to the wide-open rampart, and we would watch the mighty spaceships fly. I’d tell you to look up, and we’d see those ships break our world’s surly bonds to depart for alien shores. We’d wish their crews well as they explored great wonders yet unknown. Then you’d fill the lengthening dusk with your pitiful whimpers as the shiny rockets soared away … without you … never to return.


David Mack on The Analog Blog

“Speaking Truth to Puppies” – June 5

Though our story mimics the style of Ms. Swirsky’s, Glenn and I want to make clear that we intend no disrespect to her or to her story. Our reason for choosing it as our template was the story seems to have become a lightning rod for the ire of Rabid Puppy and Sad Puppy supporters — two of whom today published a far more mean-spirited parody of it on the blog of Theodore Beale, aka Vox Day.




Nick Mamatas

“Rocket To The Red Planet”  – June 5

It’s actually the Puppies who are the Marxists. Their agent of change is a subaltern proletariat—those workaday beer-money fans who have gone unheard and who must be organized by an intellectual caste into a fighting force.


Jeffro Johnson on Jeffro’s Space Gaming Blog

“Withering Criticism for me Compliments of ‘Mark’ from File770” – June 5

Okay, I gotta say. It takes a lot of nerve to go over to File770 and say I’m willing to answer anything they want to ask. It seems crazy. I men, my gut feeling on that was that it would be sort of like attempting to have a rational discussion in the middle of a food fight.

But to be fair to those folks, there are more than a couple of people over there that notice the effort. Like Meredith, for instance:….


Barry Deutsch at Alas, A Blog

“Hugo 2014 Graphic Story Nominees” – June 5

Amptoons graphic story noms COMP

The Graphic Story Nominees are a nearly puppy-free category; four of the five nominees didn’t come from puppies. The five nominated works are (in order of my ranking):

  1. Sex Criminals Volume 1: One Weird Trick, written by Matt Fraction, art by Chip Zdarsky (Image Comics)
  2. Ms. Marvel Volume 1: No Normal, written by G. Willow Wilson, illustrated by Adrian Alphona and Jake Wyatt, (Marvel Comics)
  3. Rat Queens Volume 1: Sass and Sorcery, written by Kurtis J. Weibe, art by Roc Upchurch (Image Comics)
  4. Saga Volume 3, written by Brian K. Vaughan, illustrated by Fiona Staples (Image Comics)

The remaining nominee, The Zombie Nation by Carter Reid, I’m going to regretfully rank below “no award.”

Although – as you’ll see – I have criticisms of all these works, I also think this is one of the best Hugo lists I’ve seen in this category. All four non-puppy nominees are standout mainstream comics, entertaining and well crafted.



Russell Blackford on Metamagician and The Hellfire Club

“Steven Diamond and Kary English stories – Hugo Awards Voting”  – June 5

I’ll be quite brief about these. “A Single Samurai” is a fantasy story involving a magical samurai warrior’s attempt to halt the path of a mountain-sized kaiju monster. Leaving aside a couple of small verbal infelicities, it is a well-written, well-crafted piece told in the first person by the samurai, whose character – one marked by honour, tradition, and invincible determination – is conveyed effectively. So vast is the kaiju that the samurai’s efforts appear ineffectual and futile, but read on… All in all, this is a solid short story, if marred by something of a deus ex machina style of ending. By all means give it a try and see what you think.

“Totaled” is a more innovative and sophisticated story, and I think it’s a genuine contender for the award. It’s difficult to describe this one without giving away too much and spoiling the effect. Suffice to say that it’s told – mainly in present tense, and for good reasons – from a very unusual point of view. Kary English was not previously on my radar but appears to be a noteworthy talent.


Lis Carey on Lis Carey’s Library

“The Three Body Problem, by Cixin Liu” – June 5

The Best Novel category is going to be a tough decision this year. I loved The Goblin Emperor  I’m currently enjoying the Ancillary Sword audiobook. And now I’ve just finished this amazing novel by Cixin Liu.


Lis Carey on Lis Carey’s Library

“Tea and Jeopardy, Emma Newton (presenter, writer), Peter Newman (presenter, writer)” – June 5

Another Best Fancast Hugo nominee.

Another sf-focused interview podcast. Emma Newman hosts, with Peter Newman playing Latimer, her butler. In the sample episode included in the Hugo Voters packet, some people may find the introductory segment a bit longer than necessary, and sadly lacking in any hint of what type of program this is, but it is charming. In this episode, she interviews Ramez Naam, one of last year’s Campbell Award nominees, about his fiction, movies, and the portrayal of science and scientists in both print and media fiction. It’s friendly, intelligent, interesting, and engaging. I really enjoyed this, I think more than any of the others so far.


Rhiannon Thomas on Feminist Fiction

“Hugo Nominees 2015: Ancillary Sword by Ann Leckie” – June 5

Ancillary Sword is an excellently crafted and compelling novel. It’s less complex than its award-winning predecessor Ancillary Justice, but it’s also far more accessible, making it arguably a better read over all.

Ancillary Sword has the same conceptual set-up as the first in the series. Our protagonist, Breq, was once the AI of a ship, built by a society without gender, that controlled hundreds of once-human ancillaries and became trapped in one of the ancillary bodies when the rest of the ship was destroyed. Breq dedicated herself to destroying the ruler of the universe in revenge for both her own death and the order that forced her to kill her beloved captain.

As far as unusual protagonists go, she’s pretty high up on the list.


Rebekah Golden

“Review: Ancillary Justice by Ann Leckie” – June 4

The short review of this book is it blew my mind and I loved it. Deep, transformative, and complex.


Marion on Deeds & Words

“The Hugos, 2015, Chapter Six; Novelettes” – June 4

The novelette category was heavily influenced by the splinter group(s). The challenge in this category is similar to the problem I had with the novellas. A couple of these are decent reads, or interesting stories, but are these really the best novelettes published in 2014?


Adult Onset Atheist

“SNARL: The Journeyman: In the Stone House” – June 4

I really wanted to like this story. It had some fun characters engaging in delightful dialog. It even provided some jokes for the reader to enjoy at the expense of the characters. I hope the author had fun writing this, because it read as if he did. Unfortunately this does not have enough story in it to make it a great story, and some of the failed experiments the author try to hold it back from even being a good story. However, I had fun reading this story, and that should count for something; actually it counts for quite a bit, and this story will get five stars (out of ten).



516 thoughts on “The Dingolarity 6/5

  1. Kurt, I think the only defined criteria for an SJW is that they “always lie.” Obviously the only SJWs around are Cretans.

  2. ” That reaction has beem vile enough to have made me want to see them no award the Hugos, this year, so that the RPs and SPs and general non-lefty fan base can no award in perpetuity. …”

    Given that the WSFS’s Hugo Awards are of some (unknowable) economic value… every time tax-fugitive Beale threaten to organize a conspiracy to destroy them — isn’t that a blatant threat of extortion?

    I’m wondering if somewhere there’s a DA who might think that organizing a campaign to destroy the Hugos might be prosecutable under RICO?

  3. Meredith

    It’s the dreaded windows, hence my uselessness. I have now managed to extract most of them, but it still leaves me trying to despatch them in one way or another. I thought my Calibre would cover it, but it’s the same old story with Microsoft. Innumerable capacities which I will never use in a month of Sunday’s but straight seek and find is a nightmare! I shall struggle on, daunted but defiant…

  4. @Stevie
    Its a clumsy workaround really but if you can email them the iPad can download them direct from email. The only ones I had extra problems with were the graphic novels, which were large enough for gmail to squeal foul, but gmail had some weird file sharing system that worked instead.

    Syncing is also a possibility if you can put them in an app with an iOS equivalent, but that might be more difficult than emailing.

  5. Er, to be more specific, email the files to yourself, and use the iPad to access your email account through mail (not sure if it will work through the browser), and click and download the files into iBooks or w/e ebook reader you prefer.

  6. Maximillian: May I ask that we all dial back comments towards BrianZ just a bit? I understand the feelings of people who think he is not 100% honest about his support of the puppies, but can’t we accept someone who is able to quote Hemingway in puppy-language?

    When Brian stops making demonstrably false statements, when he stops subsequently weaseling when called out on this, when he stops badgering people here to go over and engage with Puppies on their blogs, when he stops defending bad Puppy behavior, when he stops deflecting and instead actually responds to peoples’ posts in good faith, I will be happy to stop calling him out on his bad behavior.

    You may be willing to overlook a lot of bad behavior because someone has some ability at filking. I’m not, and I don’t think anyone else should have to be willing to do so, either.

  7. JJ: “You may be willing to overlook a lot of bad behavior because someone has some ability at filking. I’m not, and I don’t think anyone else should have to be willing to do so, either.”

    I have to agree. An apologist for grossly bad behaviour is as bad as the person committing the behaviour in the first place. It’s even worse when they have a pleasant demeanour which might fool people into believing their apologism.

  8. I think that dogpiling on someone with a pleasant demeanour doesn’t cover the dogpilers in glory in the eye of the casual observer. Sometimes the arguments that head Brian Z’s (or Will’s) way cross the line into bullying, in my opinion. I don’t think today was like that, but I’m not surprised someone got uncomfortable.

  9. I am not sure where Brian Z comes from. He is not recognizable to me as a Rabid puppy or even a core puppy. He might be some sort of mormon/lab mix because he is just way too nice. He might even be one of the fabled moderates. One of the great unwashed masses stumbling in to the foetid dark of trufandom.

    You are being an apologist for grossly bad behavior. Now is not time to show weakness to wrongthinkers! We must drive Brian out with mobbing, incompetent snark and endless deliberate misunderstanding. Confess your sins comrade and repent. Shun the unbeliever and remember to be tolerant at all times.

  10. @aeou

    Your statement assumes a mythical SJW consensus that doesn’t exist.

  11. I prefer individualistic, competent snark and time-delimited accidental misunderstandings, myself.

  12. @aeou

    He might be some sort of mormon/lab mix because he is just way too nice.

    Close. l’m the last surviving descendant of Farley Mowat’s St. John’s water dog, Albert.

  13. On the internet, no-one knows you’re a last surviving descendant of Farley Mowat’s St. John’s water dog, Albert.

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