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Category Archives: Hugo Awards

Belated thoughts on the Hugo Awards 2016

The 2016 Hugo Awards for science fiction had their ceremony on 20th August. Last year I closely followed the awards, after reading news stories alleging that US conservatives were trying to keep women authors out of SF. This year I didn’t vote, but posted the video below on

The Two Cultures of Hugo short stories

Lela E. Buis argues that hard SF writers are in danger of extinction, even in their traditional home of Analog magazine. She says: Does staying within the confines of science really limit creativity? Cixin Liu has refuted this one. He’s written something very creative within the

Heroism, message fiction and the countervailing point-of-view

I was fascinated to read a comment about message fiction (in film) on an article about free speech in the Spectator. The commentator, Sue Smith, argues that message fiction is where the text contains no countervailing point of view. There is only one ‘truth’ presented and emotional imagery,

Hugo Award nominees by nationality, and Read for the Day…

Lynn E. O’Connacht has done a fascinating analysis of the nationalities of Hugo Award nominees. I thought they were biased towards America, but this is the first time I’ve seen data. According to Lynn, 82.2% of Best Novel nominees since 1959 have come from the US. Only 12.4% have

Do the Hugo Awards have a short fiction problem?

At least one person complained that the Sad/Rabid Puppy nominees kept award-worthy short stories off the 2015 Hugo ballot… So I was curious. Was this true? Were these stories better than the stuff I’d read? An experiment was in order. I’ve now read the nominees on io9’s Puppy-free

Read for the day – The School of English

My complaint about the Hugo Awards 2014 Best Short Story was that the winner was mediocre literary fiction, which raises the question – “What is good literary fiction?” So I asked a few Facebook friends to recommend some literary short stories they loved. I’ve read one

Fandom, what fandom? The obligatory post-Hugo Awards post

I was amused to read in Yes! Magazine: Sci-Fi Fandom Declares Victory After Reactionary Nominees Lose Big at the Hugos ‘Sci-Fi fandom’ implies millions of booklovers, worldwide, all coming together to avert a hostile takeover of ‘science fiction’s most prestigious award‘  Yet the reality is that the Hugo Award 2015 for Best

Reading the Rocket: Best Novel

Are there any recent SF novels as good as The Three-Body Problem? Novels with world-changing ideas? Wild sweeps of imagination? Nail-clenching consequences for the characters? The ability to inspire my younger self to a passion for science? Published post-2010 and in the English language… Going by the rest of