Why Hugo voters picked “No Award” in two major literature categories
The Hugo Awards are arguably the most prestige award in science fiction literature (they also cover other media).
They’ve been around for well over fifty years, and many a geek like me has used the awards as a discovery tool. Winning a Hugo certainly helped your career, and upped your geek cred.
There was a considerable controversy this year, as I’ve mentioned before.
As explained in this
a group of authors tried to guide the nominations (and awards) to go to books not based solely on their intrinsic value, but on the nature of their content.
As I understand it, their argument would be that they are preserving the historic style of science fiction.
Many fans (or “fen”, to use the geeky terminology) felt that the campaign was unreasonably non-inclusive.
How did the votes go?
You can see the results in this
None of the campaign’s promoted works won. If there was a category that only had campaign nominated-works, the voters chose instead “No Award”…sort of like “none of the above”.
The winners in literature were:
Best Novella: No Award
Best Novellette: “The Day the World Turned Upside Down”
by Thomas Olde Heuvelt (translated by Lia Belt)
Best Short Story: No Award
Best Editor (short form, long form): No Awards
I’ll just say, I’m not happy that no awards were given out in some of these categories…although I appreciate a principled stand.
I also feel sorry for all of the authors: this is going to be seen as an “asterisk” year, where it was simply being the best writer that won the category (of course, is that ever true?).
People who were nominated by the campaign may also suffer from that…even if they didn’t agree with the campaign’s position.
I don’t quite know what you do about this in the future…I don’t think any rules were broken. You could change the rules, but how would you do that?
What do you think? Do the Hugo awards matter to you? Is it possible to have a “fan nominated” process which can not be corrupted? If you were a Hugo voter, what would have done?
Feel free to tell me and my readers what you think by commenting on this post.
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