The Deep Breath Before The Dive

Comments have now been closed on the recommendations pages at the Sad Puppies 4 site so I can collate with a static data set. That’s the easy part.

The collation starts this weekend, which should be interesting in a try not to go cross-eyed kind of way. It’s a good thing I test software for a living: this is exactly the kind of fiddly, persnickety job that software testers do well.

Mind you, if I’m doing something like this again, I’ll write a freaking app to collect the suggestions because this is not the kind of thing I want to be doing more than once (Lazy tester’s axiom: do it once, right). I can manage that level of coding without too much trouble – and anything with a database behind it I can pull what I need without issues.

So… what next for the fearless Queen Bitch?

  • Nominations close on March 31st.
  • I will have The List done by mid-March, leaving a minimum of two weeks to get nominations in.
  • The List will be a top 10 (or closest – not all the categories had enough suggestions for that) for each category, with links to the full list for anyone who wants to see it.
  • If you’ve read it/seen it/watched it and think it really is one of the best of its kind for the year, go right ahead and nominate it. If you think something else is, nominate that.
  • After nominations close, things will go quiet-ish for a while, because I’ll be at Lunacon the weekend of the 20th, at Ravencon the following month, and work is kind of nuts (when is it not?)
  • Once the nominations are announced, I’ll be nagging the people I know with much more reach than me to do book/whatever bombs to encourage people to read/watch/view/whatever before voting.
  • (Yes, that does mean I’ll keep nagging people to sign up to vote. Moar, remember?)
  • I will be attending MidAmericon 2, barring disaster. Details here are still in flux, but I’m working on it.

That said, it’s time for the obligatory notices:

Obligatory notice 1: It might be too late to sign up to nominate, but you can still sign up to vote!

Obligatory notice 2: Read, watch, listen to, then nominate.

Obligatory notice 3: If I don’t play fetch with the demon berserker kitten now I will suffer the consequences.


  1. Thank you Kate for giving us an opportunity to get our favorites out in front of fellow readers. I have added a number of titles to my ‘to read’ list that I probably would have missed otherwise. Thank you too for ignoring the PC fascism that continues to percolate in the contemporary culture.

    1. You’re welcome. That aspect on its own is a “win” for Sad Puppies 4 – everyone who contributed has helped to generate a truly awesome reading list.

  2. Over at our “fan club”, Mike Glyer appears to be suffering from poor reading comprehension:

    “”Mike Glyer on March 2, 2016 at 4:57 pm said:


    Your analysis of the women’s role in SP4 reminds me of something I recently observed. Kate Paulk and company began by naming their effort Sad Puppies Four: The Bitches are Back” with a lot of stuff about —

    I, Kate the Impaler, am Queen Bitch and I am ably seconded by Sarah, the Beautiful But Evil Space Princess, and Amanda, the Redhead of Doom, and we are all more than capable of going Queen Bitch when we need to).

    Yet only two weeks ago, when Christopher Chupik claimed File 770 had written something unflattering about her, Kate Paulk commented (on this post Hugo Categories Highlight – The Short Fiction Categories) —

    That Straw Kate is quite the bitch, isn’t she? I’m glad I’ve never met her

    Never mind there was nothing of the kind said or implied in the post Chupik claimed to be quoting, I was struck to discover Paulk felt that was now an image she needed to protect herself against. The takeaway is that Paulk thinks “bitch” is unflattering and you have to wonder who was the intended audience for the original rhetorical flourishes. The Puppy support base, I now conclude, not SP4 opponents.”

    I never “claimed to be quoting” his post, I was quoting his commenters. As to the rest, I think Kate is more than capable of speaking for herself, though apparently Glyer doesn’t. 😉

    1. You’ve misunderstood. They are not to be held accountable for the mutterings and comments on their blogs. We, on the other hand, are fully responsible for, and undeniably in agreement with, the mutterings and comments on Our blogs. Despite the fact that They moderate the heck out of and massage Their comment sections, and We only ban trolls and work-from-home spam.

      The sooner you learn to live with the double standards, the happier you will be.

      1. Is this not the same group that says that the same word used by an ethnic group for itself can be racist if used against them?

        1. certainly does, and Scalzi’s micromanaging of his comment section is legendary.

        2. Sorry. Humming in tune doesn’t work too well over the intertubes. It comes out sounding like popcorn kittens.

      2. Not only that, the trolls have to be really obnoxious to get banned here. I think most of our ban list is currently known aliases of everyone’s “favorite” social disease.

    2. Alas poor Vile666ers, they know nothing of the Australian way of speech, where the use of a word is strongly contextual. Nor, it seems, do they understand differences in magnitude.

      I am, as I said, the Queen Bitch of Sad Puppies 4. Kate the Impaler, etc. etc. So if I say someone is quite the bitch in a tone that suggests I don’t like that person (especially when it’s the Straw Kate) that means they passed the Bitch Event Horizon some time back and they’re still accelerating.

      Of course, when I say I’m a bitch I’m using it the same way an Australian calls his/her best friend a bastard, with affectionate acknowledgment of the strengths and weaknesses of all concerned.

      This is, of course, far too nuanced for the average Vile666er or their putative leader (who is mysteriously not responsible for anything anyone else says despite his heavy moderation. Hm… Ze vorlt vorks een mysterious vays, young Grasshopper. (Oh ye dogs. They have to fix that damn HVAC unit at work ASAP if I’m mixing metaphors and bad accents like this.)

      1. But Australian is a white culture thus to be hated and denigrated, right? Right? *eyeroll*

        The above is sarcasm, for the VileProggers who can’t apparently understand/read/comprehend such.

        Me, I’m hoping they don’t fix that HVAC unit at work if it means more amusement like that, Kate!

  3. This will interrupt my reading schedule,. I came into all this Sad Puppy stuff by accident being a Sci Fi READER since the late 50s but never really a TruFan? or involved in anything however there has been a positive note to my entire experience I have discovered a nice new list of authors to read. For instance I am in the middle of ConVent right now and have finished a few books by several more of the posters here 😉 May the Puppy Kickers grind their teeth in anguished frustration

    1. Of course you’re not a TruFan! You don’t know the secret handshakes and call-and-response rituals for that. Only the Grand Masters of the First Degree are initiated in the Mysteries of Fandom . . .

  4. Hey Kate, thanks for all the hard work you’ve been doing.

    However, if my name makes it as a “finalist” or however you’re deciding, please remove it. You know my feelings for the Hugos and how highly I think of them.

  5. Coolness. I’m still not sure that I’ll shell out for a voting membership or not (too many places for my limited discretionary funds to go) but at least it’ll give me a list of good reading material to work from. Either way: very cool.

    By the way, thank you for doing all this work and dealing with all the backlash and flames, Kate: to you, Mrs. Hoyt, Amanda and whomever else is involved.

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