A Miscellany

So life trundles on. I’ve been crazy busy at The Day Job (trust me, it needs those capitals. I test the Code of Cthulhu) and will be for at least another month or so. It’s really sad when I look forward to a convention as an opportunity to rest.

That’s right. Ravencon – where I have a pretty solid schedule – will be rest time for me. It will also be interesting in the Chinese Curse sense, because I’ve long passed the point where my “polite society” filters crapped out (this happens when I’m tired, and with the way The Day Job has been, I’m never not tired. It’s just a matter of degree). This means that whatever I’m thinking is likely to come out of my mouth without any filters to prevent me offending 150% of the entire universe. Possibly the entire multiverse and several abolished dimensions as well.

I’m talented that way. My best (worst) puns happen completely unintentionally. So do some of my more interesting and inspired writing efforts – this is why I can never tell how well I’ve done when I write something. I have to wait until I’ve had time to forget it.

In other news, this of the Puppy-related kind, I’ve heard rumors from several sources (but nothing official, alas) that more than 4000 Hugo nomination ballots were cast. I’ve also heard there are some saying that Sad Puppies 4 is a nonentity, that it’s run out of steam, it’s dead, pining for the fjords, gone to a better place… (erm, sorry?). Well, no.

Sad Puppies 4 is waiting to hear who the nominees (*ahem*. The Hugo Site says they aren’t being called nominees any more. They’re ‘finalists’ from a shortlist. Whatever) are before congratulating them for their recognition, whoever they are, and starting the next round of campaigning to boost involvement in the Hugos process.

I’m not going to claim Sad Puppies 4 was responsible for nearly doubling the nomination ballot count: with my negative publicity skills, the likelihood of that it somewhere close to zero. I will claim to have had a part in making the nominations a little more healthy (nearly twice as healthy, even), and plan to keep doing my best to increase voting numbers as well.

So yes, if that 4000+ number is correct, Sad Puppies 4 can claim a modest victory in the nomination phase, no matter who is nominated… shortlisted. An increase of nearly 100%? That’s a big boost and a very good thing.


  1. “4000 Hugo nomination ballots” The hope here is that the 4000 ballots show a more true image of SF fandom today than what we’ve been seeing in the past decade.

    1. Well, I figure 2500 of them are part of the Noah Ward Slate from last year. So my guess is most nominees will be heavy on message and short on entertainment. Would love to be proven wrong, though.

      1. The cynic in me is wondering if this year’s nomination votes will be larger than the final votes.

          1. That’s the theory, for a fact. THE fact, however, is a difference may exist, and exceed Zero by a noticeable amount, based on historical record.

          2. Typically, the nominations are smaller than the final vote. The carryover of eligible nominators from the previous year’s final vote to the nominating ballots of the next year is rather poor. This year’s retention was much higher, setting a record for nominating ballots. It’s four times the average Pre-Puppy nominating vote.

        1. whats wrong with that? people that paid last year but didn’t pay this year can nominate but not vote, right?

          1. If the nominating pool was 4000 voters, and the final votes the traditional 1-2k, it does not bode well for the award. Which, if my guess about the nomination results is correct – SP/RP nearly shut out – I don’t think either side will be as willing to spend the money for the right to vote the final ballot.

        2. Of course they will be. Nominations can be made by attendees of the previous, the current and the next Worldcon. Votes can only be cast by the current Worldcon.

        3. I suspect it will be. I know I’m not voting for the Hugos, or either attending or supporting the Worldcon. Let the Hugos, the Worldcon, and Trufandom all fade away into that good night. . .

      2. That reminds me: I was bouncing around the net last week and tripped across a Live Journal page for Hugo Award recommendations [Hugo Award Nominee Recommendations] that was opened in 2006. Looking through the page I happen to notice that for the past few years that the Bay Area Science Fiction Association had posted a full recommendation list. I didn’t look to see how far back that went, but I did find it very interesting that it existed last year – when all the “you can’t have a slate” comments were being made. If what Brad did last year was a slate, then the Bay Area group also put out a “slate”. File that under counter arguments.

        1. Lists (aka Slates) have always existed. The current crowd of N00bs are counting on most of the old hands like me to either have GAFIATed or to be in on the scam OR (and this is why my blood boils) to believe the “blood libel” they spread to keep the other N00bs voting in lockstep.


  2. The cynic in me wonders if they’re not being called nominations, because some of the “finalists” won’t have been nominated in sufficient numbers to get them on the “short list.” But I’m sure the process is too open for anything questionable to happen. /sarc

    1. They are changing to “finalist” because some people were blogging that they were Hugo nominees… even when the nomination period wasn’t over. They thought they could use that title if they had got one nomination. o.O

      “Finalist” is more clear.

    2. The term was changed from “nominee” to “finalist” in a Constitutional amendment originally passed at Loncon, and ratified at Sasquan, changing the term in 3.7.1. There had been a number of people who were claiming to be “nominees” based on the normal English definition of having gotten one or more nominations, so they would nominate their work(s), and claim to be “Hugo nominees”. So the term was changed to finalists, and refers to works that make it onto the final ballot.

        1. And, when I made my original comment, I hadn’t yet seen the article about a Canadian author who got her local media outlet to write a story headlined, “Local fantasy author up for Hugo award”.


          And she’s defending her use of the term on her Facebook page.

          I really wish we didn’t have to stop using “nominee”, since “finalist” doesn’t have the continuity with our past. But it’s this sort of example that convinced me that the change was necessary (which is why I voted for it).

          1. And she would no doubt be mightily offended if someone were to point out that people like her cause a whole lot of damage to the viability of the award (in other words, why we can’t have nice things).

  3. I’m offended. I haven’t found anything particularly offensive in your first three paragraphs, but I’m deeply offended by them. Supercalifrangillistic fundamentally offended.

    1. Okay, the noms will come out the day of the PA GOP primaries. Thanks.

    2. Weird. I looked on that site and didn’t see that post. I guess the Code of Cthulhu ate them when I was looking that way.

  4. Kate, thank you for all your work.

    Apologies for the non sequitur, but in other news, has everybody noticed the crazy success of the kickstarter for the Harry Dresden universe card game? Any fans of that series should check it out; I already backed the project. For what it’s worth the target goal was $48K, and they hit that in 13 hours … it’s been three days and now they are at about $170K and creating new stretch goals towards the $300K mark. Somehow, the ‘No SFF Sparrow Shall Fall Unnoticed” sci-fi blog over at 770 has missed this, a shocker I know.

    1. Oh, you mean the Dresden Files, by that formerly-talented has-been Puppy-lover Jim Butcher? 😉

  5. Good on you.

    A thankless task, but you know the drill… “all that is needed for [wickedness, willful stupidity, clueless bigotry, etc. etc. etc. as the King said to Anna] to succeed is for good folks to do nothing.

  6. more than 4000 Hugo nomination ballots were cast. I’ve also heard there are some saying that Sad Puppies 4 is a nonentity, that it’s run out of steam
    So, almost double the ballots of last year, the prior most ballots in a year and that is somehow an indication that SP4 is a nonentity? Wishful thinking? Projection? Colorado 4/20?

    1. They could be all anti-Puppy nominations. I guess we’ll find out in four days.

      1. They could be 85% nonPuppy nominations and Puppy nominees could still be the bulk of the shortlist. That’s how slates work. That’s why some people like them, and why some people don’t.

      2. And where were all these voters a few years ago? they definitely weren’t voting then.

  7. I didn’t send in any nominations… I don’t read much current stuff, so I didn’t feel qualified.

    I paid (and voted) last year because of a recommendation on Sarah’s blog that the download packet would be worth the cost (it was). Counting on you folks again to tell me whether it’s worth giving them my money again this year. 🙂

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