Category Archives: Hugo Awards

My Hugo Eligibility Post

Hugo Awards nominations are open until March 17th, which means it’s time to write an eligibility post! I didn’t publish any fiction or art or podcasts in 2016, myself, but I did do a lot of fan writing on various platforms, so I am eligible to be nominated as a Fan Writer. I’d be honored and privileged to be considered for your nomination.

Looking back on 2016, there are many things I wrote for and about fandom, but particular things I’d like to highlight are:

This Twitter thread (later turned into a longer essay) on bias in Worldcon bidding.

This post on international SFF reading.

This frank (Facebook) post on the financial cost of bidding for Worldcon, and subsequent discussions on North American and British privileges in bidding.

This compilation of gender inclusive forms of address, which I posted to Facebook & Twitter last year and participated in several SoMe (Social Media) discussions about. The goal was to encourage panelists, moderators, and public speakers in general to be more gender inclusive when addressing groups of people. I can report some concrete success, in that a couple of convention staffers contacted me to say they were updating their panelist & moderator info sheet to include this issue. Yay!

I co-authored the original Worldcon 75 accessibility statement at the beginning of 2016, and took a significant role on this topic within the committee and when engaging with the membership. W75 has since updated their accessibility page to reflect the goals and process of the new leadership, so I’m linking to the Wayback Machine for this.

I wrote parts of the Worldcon 75 website and publications, although I don’t know what parts of what I wrote are still being used at this point. You can see the Progress Reports (PRs) for Worldcon 75 here. I contributed to PRs 0, 1, and 2.

Relatedly, I was also interviewed for several podcasts last year. The most fandom-relevant of them was the Mad Writers Union podcast episode on community building, where we nattered for a couple of hours on conventions, speculative fiction, and communities. In particular, I talked about how Readercon staff, as a community, addressed the incident of sexual harassment that occurred at Readercon 23.

 

Crystal hugging Major Ursa, the stuffed polar bear.

I’m just amused by this photo shoot Worldcon 75 asked me to do with a stuffed polar bear.

I usually don’t write an eligibility post for any awards, and have some trepidation about doing so now. Historically speaking, women are punished for doing self-promotion. Heck, there are several think pieces about how Hilary Clinton’s popularity plummeted any time she asked for a promotion. It was really disheartening. Women and other marginalized people are penalized for promoting diversity of any kind, which is something we’re inherently doing when we’re doing self-promotion and are of a less-privileged identity.

In terms of being the change I wish to see in the world, though, I’ve decided to post this and see how it goes. I  support all the women, People of Color, trans folks, and others who are debating doing similarly. Having been on the receiving end of death threats for my feminist work in fandom, I recognize that everyone should make their own threat assessments and decisions on this topic. Here’s hoping it goes well.

There’s a crowdsourced compilation of Hugo-eligible works available in this spreadsheet, btw, for those who are interested — you may have forgotten some work you wanted to nominate, but maybe someone else can remind you!

PS: If you aren’t sure how Hugo nominations work or whether you are able to nominate, I covered that in a more recent blog post on Worldcon membership benefits. I’m also happy to answer questions, if you have any.

Leave a comment

Filed under Fandom, Helsinki, Hugo Awards, Personal, Readercon, Worldcon

What Do I Get With My Worldcon Membership?

I get asked this … a lot. Even now. So, okay, this is kind of a question about how the Hugos work, and kind of a question about how Worldcon in general works, in my opinion. Here’s a quick (and simplified) overview of what you get with a Worldcon membership of any given year.

  1. Hugo nomination rights for the year before, the year of, and the year after your membership to Worldcon. 
  2. Hugo voting rights for the year of your membership. 
  3. Access to the Hugo Packet, if applicable. 
  4. Paper publications of the convention, depending on the convention’s policies.
  5. Ability to send business to, speak up at, and vote on business at the WSFS business meeting at Worldcon.
  6. Ability to vote in site selection for Worldcon site options two years in the future (and NASFIC site options one year in the future, if applicable).

Some notes:

a) Worldcon membership benefits depend partly on how soon you get your membership. If you voted in site selection for a Worldcon (like, say, voting in the 2017 site selection race, which was won by Worldcon 75), you automatically got an immediate supporting (aka non-attending) membership of Worldcon for the year on which you voted. This means you have a membership early enough to get all possible membership benefits. Worldcon generally gives you all possible benefits of membership if you join the convention by January 31st of the year BEFORE the convention, though, so if you didn’t vote on site selection one summer, it’s not necessarily too late! (It is now too late to be able to buy a new membership and nominate with it this year, though — if you didn’t have a membership to MidAmeriCon2Worldcon 75, or Worldcon 76 by January 31st, you can’t nominate for the Hugos this year.)

b) A supporting membership to a Worldcon can be upgraded at any point prior to the convention for an attending membership to that Worldcon, generally at the cost of attending membership when upgraded minus the cost of the supporting membership one already owns. The rights of membership to Worldcon as a supporting member versus an attending member usually differ in only one regard — supporting members can’t show up at convention without paying more money, and there are a couple of things that members only get if they are at the convention in person (which requires an attending type of membership).

c) The Hugo Packet (which is our name for a compilation of eBook and PDF samples or entire content of the works nominated) isn’t something any Worldcon can guarantee, since it’s up to the individuals and publishers on the ballot what, if anything, is included of their copyrighted works. Any Worldcon can also decide not to publish a Hugo Packet.

So! Read more detailed explanations below if you’re so inclined.

Continue reading

Leave a comment

Filed under Fandom, Helsinki, Hugo Awards, Worldcon

2015 Reading

My title is a lie, actually — this is a list of books I’ve read since Readercon in July of 2015, and it’s only the ones that are Hugo-nominable. If it didn’t come out in 2015, it doesn’t make this list because I want to focus on what can be nominated for a Hugo right now.

The Galaxy Game by Karen Lord

Half-Resurrection Blues & Shadowshaper by Daniel Jose Older

An Inheritance of Ashes by Leah Bobet

Lex Talionis by RSA Garcia

An Ember in the Ashes by Sabaa Tahir

The Just City by Jo Walton

Updraft by Fran Wilde

House of Shattered Wings by Aliette de Bodard

Of Noble Family by Mary Robinette Kowal

Pocket Apocalypse and Red-Rose Chain by Seanan McGuire

Book of Phoenix by Nnedi Okorafor

Grace of Kings by Ken Liu

Time Salvager by Wes Chu

Court of Fives by Kate Elliott

Karen Memory by Elizabeth Bear

Only Ever Yours & Asking For It by Louise O’Neill

The Fifth Season by NK Jemisin

Sorcerer to the Crown by Zen Cho

Ancillary Mercy by Ann Leckie

Last First Snow by Max Gladstone

Uprooted by Naomi Novick

Zeroboxer by Fonda Lee

Cold Iron by Stina Leicht

Chimera by Mira Grant

Revision by Andrea Phillips

The Sin-Eater’s Daughter by Melinda Salisbury

Deceptions by Kelley Armstrong

The Sculptor by Scott McCloud

Bitch Planet by Kelly Sue DeConnick

Stand Still Stay Silent by Minna Sundberg

Collected Fiction by Hannu Rajaniemi (short story “Skywalker” is Hugo-nominable)

The Otherling & other stories by Anne Leinonen (short story “The Skinner” is Hugo-nominable)

Angels & Exiles by Yves Meynard (short story “The Song of the Mermaid” is Hugo-nominable)

Falling in Love with Hominids by Nalo Hopkinson (short story “Men Sell Not Such in Any Town” is Hugo-nominable, I think?)

Stories For Chip (full of short stories that are Hugo-nominable)

Octavia’s Brood (full of short stories that are Hugo-nominable)

Queers destroy SF (full of short stories that are Hugo-nominable)

 

I don’t want to get into any reviews or details, at this point, because I don’t really have the time and I don’t know if I’m up for it. I read all of these things, however, and thought they were magnificent and (so far as I’m aware) Hugo-nominable.

 

Other things & stuff:

Maija Peitikainen and Petri Hiltunen did the bid art for Helsinki in 2017, Hugo-nominable under fan artists.

Christopher Jones does amazing work for art for Convergence and is Hugo-nominable.

Nisi Shawl, Bill Campbell, and Carl Engel-Laird are all Hugo-nominable editors, so far as I can discern.

The Finnish fanzine MARVIN (published sometimes in Finnish and sometimes in English) is Hugo-nominable this year. This is the same crew of people who brought us the brilliant and needed articles about the shortage of evil villain bases of operation. We may need to rent co-working space in future, apparently.

 

 

Okay, I lied again, because I don’t want to lose track of what little I managed to track reading this year…

Things I read that aren’t 2015 Hugo-nominable, but that I still tracked:

(The Younger Gods, Michael Underwood, 2014)

(First three novels in the Ex Libris series by Jim C. Hines)

(How to Suppress Women’s Writing by Joanna Russ)

(Too Like the Lightning & Seven Surrenders by Ada Palmer — 2016 books)

(Unspeakable Things by Laurie Penny)

(Story of Your Life by Ted Chiang)

(A Natural History of Dragons by Marie Brennan)

(Omens & Visions by Kelley Armstrong)

(Ancillary Sword by Ann Leckie)

3 Comments

Filed under Books, Fandom, Hugo Awards, Incomplete

Convention Terminology

A friend of mine recently said something along the lines of, “hey, I go to conventions, and I still don’t understand more than half the lingo!”  I care a lot about making conventions inclusive and accessible, so this seems like a great opportunity to share some intel.  Here are some terms we came up with that might need explaining…

Dictionary picture

A dictionary by any other name …

the 5-2-1 rule – This is a somewhat infamous guideline for attending conventions.  The idea is that you get at least 5 hours of sleep, 2 meals, and 1 shower every day during the convention.  You can’t make up for a lack in one category by doing extra in another; 3 meals will in no way forgive a lack of shower or having fewer than 5 hours of sleep at con.  Please follow this guideline if you go to a convention.  You, and everyone else around you, will have a better time than if you don’t observe the 5-2-1 rule.

code of conduct – A code of conduct is a set of expectations for behavior at the convention, usually written and adopted as policy of the convention by its staff or leadership.  It should be communicated to all attendees well in advance of the convention and it should be applicable to all members (including staff, leadership, guests, etc.).  Ideally, a code of conduct includes specificity on how unacceptable behavior is defined, clear information on what to do if unacceptable behavior is witnessed or experienced, and what might happen upon the convention receiving a report of said behavior.  In addition, many people have co-signed John Scalzi’s policy on codes of conduct, which is very related reading.

conchair – The conchair is the most common term for the person at the top of the leadership for a convention.  If there are multiple conchairs, they are called co-chairs.  An assistant conchair is considered the next level down on the org chart, and is sometimes called a “vice chair.” Continue reading

4 Comments

Filed under Fandom, Hugo Awards, Incomplete, Worldcon

Ninni Aalto, an artist I want to see on the Hugo ballot

Ninni Aalto did several pieces of art for the Helsinki in 2015 bid (my favorite being the iconic polar bear fishing which became our logo last year), and has done more for the Helsinki in 2017 bid for Worldcon.  She’s also created other art, too, though.  Because her first language is Finnish, she often posts things in Finnish then translates them into English.  You can see some of her blog — including comics and random art — here.

Ninni's Polar Bear Fishing (cropped)

This is a cropped copy of Ninni’s polar bear fishing in Helsinki’s waters.

 

My favorite recent comic is this one: Easy Fix.  She’s also blogged sometimes about her depression, which makes this comic all the more awesome and poignant to me.

I’ve discovered that several people agreed with me last year that Ninni should be on the Hugo ballot, to the point where she missed being listed as a Fan Artist nominee by only a couple of votes.  That’s sad, in my opinion, so I’m boosting her blog and art here in the hopes more people will take note.  Ninni would probably kill me if she knew I was writing this, but since she doesn’t read my blog, hopefully she won’t know (ha! triumph!).  Disclaimer: I do consider Ninni a friend via the internet, so obviously I’m a little biased.  That said, I believe her contributions to fannish art are large despite not being something everyone’s aware of.  Hence, my doing a signal boost here.  🙂

Leave a comment

Filed under Fandom, Hugo Awards

So, You Want to Vote on Worldcon Location? Yay!

Worldcon is historically kinda bad at getting the vote out on site selection (aka “voting on where Worldcon will be in the future”).  Last year, there were 6130 total members of LoneStarCon3.  Of these, 1348 members voted on site selection, or not quite 22% of the membership.  And that was a highly contested race!

I don’t think low voter turnout is the intended outcome, but I do think Worldcon voting isn’t the easiest system to understand.  Worldcon is a big endeavor, and big things are unwieldy, and site selection voting hasn’t often made it to the top of the list of things to make sure the public is knowledgeable about.  Plus, according to the Sasquan report I read last month, the previous five Worldcon races were uncontested.  Maybe it’s pretty understandable that it wasn’t a huge focus in the past.  I think I was on Worldcon staff for at least two years before I knew we could vote on Worldcon location.

But this is how we decide where Worldcon will be!  Which has a huge impact on the con in the long term (more on that later)!  And it’s the least expensive option for getting a membership to Worldcon!  So I’m going to attempt to explain it.

Only You Can Bring Worldcon to Helsinki

After losing Worldcon 2015 by only 35 votes, I truly believe that only YOU can bring Worldcon to Helsinki! You, and many others voting with us …

Continue reading

20 Comments

Filed under Budget Impact, Fandom, Helsinki, Hugo Awards, Worldcon

2013 Scifi and Fantasy Novel Reading

What have I read this year that was published this year, in the scifi and fantasy genres?  Seems like it’s about time to start keeping track, in order to be able to nominate for Hugos in a few months…

2013 Books I’ve Read:

Parasite by Mira Grant

Chimes at Midnight and Midnight Blue-Light Special by Seanan McGuire

The Girl Who Soared Over Fairyland and Cut the Moon in Two by Cat Valente

You by Austin Grossman

Madd Addam by Margaret Atwood

Bread and Wine: An Erotic Tale of New York by Samuel R. Delany

 

Still to read, but clearly on the list of things to read:

The Rabbit Back Literature Society by Pasi Ilmari Jääskeläinen

Sculptor’s Daughter: A Childhood Memoir by Tove Jansson (which my copy says was published for the first time in English in 2013; I’m confused by Amazon saying 2014)

Okay, that’s not nearly enough reading.  Time to catch up!  What else should I have read in 2013?

Sadly, The Killing Moon by N.K. Jemisin, The Quantum Thief by Hannu Rajaniemi, and Who Fears Death by Nnedi Okorafor were published prior to 2013.  They were really fantastic books, though!  I’m sad to have missed them when first they were published.

Leave a comment

Filed under Hugo Awards