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Monday, January 19, 2015

A hot summer in SF

Dave Freer senses one on the horizon:
I am seeing things which just wouldn’t have happened a few years ago creeping in. A few years back badmouthing and blacklisting and ‘I won’t read’ and you’re a jerk (or racist or or homophobe or bigot etc. etc.) ostracization if you read XYZ (yes, Baen) was the sole property of the left. It was ineffectual for anyone else, as there wasn’t much else. In the last few years, particularly last year, that has changed. The insults became a joke, or a badge of pride. The sad puppies, and particularly the attacks on Larry Correia and Brad Torgersson (Vox Day thrives on it, and so does his audience, something his detractors don’t seem to grasp) have had large numbers badmouth and blacklist the darlings of the left like Leckie and Hines and Scalzi. Yes, I know, they’ve done the same in the inverse. But… they always have. It’s nothing new. So what? No loss to the authors the left are demonizing to their followers, who didn’t buy them anyway, and always sneered at them. Those are not lost sales, but the same is not true in converse. It’ll spread to those who support them, and for some of those very sales stand between them and being dropped. And the demons of absolute power are coming back to haunt them with pedophile praise-singing and elevation of internet bully-trolls like Requires Hate (now reborn and rehabilitated as Benjanum Somethingorother (another fake persona?) And of course, independent publishing of e-books has revealed that the demographic of readers reflecting the population is real, and their little subsection is over-served.

It all shapes up for pretty mess. I reckon in the next ten years the pendulum will swing very hard and far. I hope those on the winning side of that bit of future history will have the sense to not push the pendulum higher when sense says to damp it. It’s probably 30 years off, at least, so I’ll be dead. Not my problem any more.

So what do we readers and writers who love our genre need to think about now, if we’re actually going to be long sighted and care about our genre? The answer depends on whether you sit as one of the pampered darlings getting benefits way, way over your demographic rights… or the other 90% of us. The latter… not much. Buy books from those who have been discriminated against – people like yourselves. You don’t have to buy the output of Traditional Publishing, or nothing. Write your own, support (with promotion and friendship, and maybe a good critique or two) people who have been marginalized by traditional publishing, but are like you. Support the Sad Puppies newest version, if you choose. If people choose to badmouth your favorite authors, vote with your dollars or cents. The demographics of those dollars and cents works against special perks for favored darlings.

If you are one of the other side, try panic. It looks good on you. Seriously, if you don’t want far left wing intersectionality crushed… and books and authors who write what you want to see driven out, and get what you’ve handed out, you better start damping that pendulum down. I think last year’s Hugo Awards was about your last real chance, but you could all get together in your little cabals and nominate something other than the totally improbable usual suspects.

Anyone want to bet they won’t be just as dim-witted as last year?

Yeah, me neither.

I can scent spring… and it’ll be a hot summer.
Translation: thrives = 895,311 monthly pagviews in January 2013 (just before John Scalzi and David Barnett teamed up to attack me in the Guardian), versus 1,467,620 monthly pageviews in December 2014. Clearly you are all very, very bad people and I hope you are ashamed of yourselves. In the meantime, Whatever is in precipitous decline, the Toad of Tor has been fired from Tor Books, and the various Pink SF awards have descended into complete farce.

The pinkshirts do have a choice, of course. They can try to ignore me and permit me to pound on them mercilessly without publicly defending themselves, or they can attack me, create a public discourse, and thereby risk being humiliated and creating even more awareness of the ideas they fear than before. Guess which one the rabbits will choose? It makes no difference, of course, either one works for me. I think it's rather cruel for Dave Freer to suggest there is anything they can do about it now. What has happened so far is only the beginning; just wait until more  of the smaller SF houses collapse like Night Horse, the media tie-in markets dry up, Tor starts laying people off and further cutting advances, and Castalia House begins to tap into the game channel. There is a reason, after all, that the likes of Scalzi and Gould have gone running to Hollywood. They see the writing on the wall.

Speaking of Sad Puppies 3, there is an amusing discussion taking place at Brad's place, as a few SJWs are begging him to please not hit them again. The extent to which they don't understand us is remarkable. And if you haven't registered as a supporting member of WorldCon yet, you'll need to do so if you want to participate in the voting this time around. Brad Torgersen, aka Bleeding Heart Bear, will be posting the Sad Puppies 3 recommendations for Hugo Award nominations in due order. Fingers crossed!

32 Comments:

Anonymous Fran January 19, 2015 1:46 PM  

Well I guess we need to go after Hollywood now. Call it SJW flight.

Blogger Nate January 19, 2015 1:53 PM  

"They can try to ignore me and permit me to pound on them mercilessly without publicly defending themselves, or they can attack me, create a public discourse, and thereby risk being humiliated and creating even more awareness of the ideas they fear than before. Guess which one the rabbits will choose?"

when he said "Only fight battles you have already won"... he was talking about situations like this.

Blogger Laguna Beach Fogey January 19, 2015 1:57 PM  

Very ashamed.

Anonymous Orville January 19, 2015 2:06 PM  

Ha! They are fast approaching the stage where they won't know whether to shit or go blind.

Blogger YIH January 19, 2015 2:19 PM  

Was ''The Toad of Tor'' (lol) actually canned? The previous thread on that was unclear on whether or not it was true.

OpenID cailcorishev January 19, 2015 2:21 PM  

I think it's rather cruel for Dave Freer to suggest there is anything they can do about it now.

I think that's because he's looking at it as a marketing issue, which it's not really. He's seeing it as: "The left had this strategy which worked pretty well, but now the other side is using it effectively -- maybe even more so -- so the left should stop using it and get the other side to agree to a cease-fire." That's what the stuff in the next paragraph about "damping down the pendulum" is about: if the right ever gets a leg up, convince them to drop it and decline to push as far as the left does (and that usually works).

But this isn't marketing; it's about right and wrong. One side is right and the other is wrong. Even if the side of right can be convinced to stop punching back, the other side will still be wrong. Pink SF will still suck and will continue to lose readers, no matter how many awards they give each other.

Anonymous zen0 January 19, 2015 2:22 PM  

I hope those on the winning side of that bit of future history will have the sense to not push the pendulum higher when sense says to damp it.

Doesn't it make more sense to shoot the wounded in the head in case they are faking and setting up a sneak attack?

Me think so.

Anonymous WinstonWebb January 19, 2015 2:50 PM  

Especially if you suspect they are zombies. It's the only way to be sure.

Anonymous The other skeptic January 19, 2015 3:29 PM  

Hollywood thinks that Clint Eastwood has joined the Evil League of Evil.

Blogger Jack Aubrey January 19, 2015 3:29 PM  

I am deeply ashamed of the number of pageviews I have provided this blog. I expect to be even more ashamed this time next year.

Blogger Brad Andrews January 19, 2015 3:32 PM  

I would not have even cared about this whole issue if they had not been following such illogical positions in their SJW efforts.

They are the ones who deserve any and all negative response, regardless of how far the pendulum swings. It is not like the "middle" of the pendulum is a state where SJW is granted an equal seat at the table.

Blogger Cataline Sergius January 19, 2015 3:36 PM  

This seems to be Schadenfreude Monday. Now with 50% less shame.

Anonymous dh January 19, 2015 3:48 PM  

It's actually pretty much that the Hugo and Nebula awards are worthless. Look at the Academy awards. Studios spend millions to get those things. The Hugo is pretty old, and publishing is a much bigger business than Hollywood. Yet people follow the Oscars, and don't care about the Hugo's.

The only reason is the people involved in the awards processes. Hollywood knows how to make the award worth a lot. Despite being gamed from time to time, and the voters having weird priorities, it retains it's value.

The Hugo is probably good for a few extra thousand units in sales, if that. Ancillary Justice from last years Hugo appears to be a commercial dud.

Anonymous The other skeptic January 19, 2015 4:26 PM  

The Hugo is probably good for a few extra thousand units in sales, if that. Ancillary Justice from last years Hugo appears to be a commercial dud.

Well, it certainly seems to have done nowhere near as well as The Martian which is #59 in Amazon best-sellers rank vs Ancillary Justice which is in the 4,000s ...

Anonymous Umlaut January 19, 2015 4:31 PM  

1,467,620 monthly pageviews in December

Most of that is Nate and Josh refreshing their pages.

Blogger Dave Freer January 19, 2015 4:40 PM  

ZenO: I was referring to situation (but inverse) of which our Pink 'friends' find themselves in now. They're trying to follow your advice, and its actually working against them with great effect. Is that desirable?

Calicorshev, no I was not assuming a ceasefire and both sides behaving as gentlemen. I was kind of looking at the two patterns typically followed by the leaders of losing forces. Some see themselves as doomed if they lose and care nothing for those who follow them, and become even more vicious, and lead their men into the same. Others, the smart ones, probably never let themselves get that mired anyway, and make sure there are acts of generosity and kindness to their foes to count on their record, particularly when end is near. Some of them will switch sides, and others at least be granted a level of liberty. The smart ones actually in this way also provide some cover for their followers, retain a nucleus of a following. If I am right, you'll see more various (moderately) left authors going to Baen (and possibly even Castilia, who knows. Vox has shown imself perfectly capable of enjoying books which do wholly reflect his world view.) I don't see any real future for the inner circle.

dh, The Hugos were quite a sales boost... thirty years ago. But that's been pissed down the wind with short-term opportunism.

Anonymous tiredofitall January 19, 2015 4:48 PM  

"If I am right, you'll see more various (moderately) left authors going to Baen (and possibly even Castilia, who knows." - Dave Freer

You must've missed Vox stating that letting Pinkshirts gain any entry into non-Pinkshirted institutions is a sure way for them to pervert and ruin said institutions.

So no, I really don't foresee Vox ever publishing anybody who smells of the warren, or is of the SJW clan.

Anonymous Anonymous January 19, 2015 5:08 PM  

Scalzi's one week "Bestseller" LOCK IN now ranks under 22,000 in sales at Amazon.

Anonymous VD January 19, 2015 5:31 PM  

I really don't foresee Vox ever publishing anybody who smells of the warren, or is of the SJW clan.

SJW clan, no. But there are plenty of moderates I wouldn't automatically rule out. Although too many of them are conditioned to kowtow reflexively to nonsensical Pink principles, and I wouldn't publish those who couldn't be broken of that.

Anonymous Peter January 19, 2015 5:34 PM  

One of the pingbacks in Brad's post was this:

http://skyseastone.net/jvstin/?p=4082

I believe that most of the regular readers will recognize the first commenter.

Anonymous zen0 January 19, 2015 5:36 PM  

> I wouldn't publish those who couldn't be broken of that.

That is, even if cute, furry, and cuddly, they still have to be Castalia Housebroken.

Blogger automatthew January 19, 2015 5:39 PM  

Umlaut: "Most of that is Nate and Josh refreshing their pages."

Here we see a troll who resents Markku, Nate, and Josh. I wonder who it could be?

Anonymous zen0 January 19, 2015 5:49 PM  

@ Dave Freer ZenO: I was referring to situation (but inverse) of which our Pink 'friends' find themselves in now. They're trying to follow your advice, and its actually working against them with great effect. Is that desirable?

Desirable? I think they have demonstrated that it is a necessity. Don't let the camel's nose in the tent again. Let them wait tables or carry out janitorial chores. There is no place in a society for people who wish to destroy said society.

Anonymous Donn January 19, 2015 5:51 PM  

Thought Andrew got banned from the internet? Seems he truly cannot help himself.

Blogger JACIII January 19, 2015 6:40 PM  

Andrew should hold special permission to post among his own kind.

Anonymous Mudz January 19, 2015 7:03 PM  

You'd probably want to confirm ID first, anyhow.

Anonymous Ire January 19, 2015 7:26 PM  

Who is the Toad of Tor? Thanks.

Blogger Cataline Sergius January 19, 2015 7:29 PM  

The Hugo is probably good for a few extra thousand units in sales, if that. Ancillary Justice from last years Hugo appears to be a commercial dud.

The Commercial side doesn't matter to them. It's a matter of stolen status.

Here is a list of Hugo and Nebula winners for best novel from the sixties and seventies: What do they have in common?

1966/1965 Novel: Dune by Frank Herbert
1970/1969 Novel: The Left Hand of Darkness by Ursula K. Le Guin
1971/1970 Novel: Ringworld by Larry Niven
1973/1972 Novel: The Gods Themselves by Isaac Asimov
1974/1973 Novel: Rendezvous with Rama by Arthur C. Clarke
1975/1974 Novel: The Dispossessed by Ursula K. Le Guin
1976/1975 Novel: The Forever War by Joe Haldeman
1978/1977 Novel: Gateway by Frederik Pohl

Did you say, they are actual classics? You're right they are! Although I would also accept they were all actual science fiction.

Next up, The eighties and nineties:

1979/1978 Novel: Dreamsnake by Vonda McIntyre
1980/1979 Novel: The Fountains of Paradise by Arthur C. Clarke
1984/1983 Novel: Startide Rising by David Brin
1985/1984 Novel: Neuromancer by William Gibson
1986/1985 Novel: Ender's Game by Orson Scott Card
1987/1986 Novel: Speaker for the Dead by Orson Scott Card

1993/1992 Novel: Doomsday Book by Connie Willis
1998 Novel: Forever Peace by Joe Haldeman

Only three books in this list have stood the test of time. The rest have either been forgotten or in the case of Neuromancer a book that people claim they've read but sits in unopened magnificence on the bookshelves of SJWs posing as SF nerds.

Now it gets tragic. The 21st century.

2002 Novel: American Gods by Neil Gaiman
2004 Novel: Paladin of Souls by Lois McMaster Bujold
2008/2007 Novel: The Yiddish Policemen's Union by Michael Chabon
2010/2009 Novel: The Windup Girl by Paolo Bacigalupi
2011/2010 Novel: Blackout/All Clear by Connie Willis
2012/2011 Novel: Among Others by Jo Walton
2014/2013 Novel: Ancillary Justice by Ann Leckie

One classic (maybe, we'll see) and it certainly isn't science fiction. Arguably there is no science fiction on this list at all.

I've said it before, A dynasty in terminal decline.

Keeping this award in their hands means everything to them in terms of status.

They can pretend on award's night, that they have written something that will stand the test of time.

Anonymous Ire January 19, 2015 7:29 PM  

SJW clan, no. But there are plenty of moderates I wouldn't automatically rule out.

Would you publish Bakker, Vox?

Anonymous Daniel January 19, 2015 8:21 PM  

Would you publish Bakker, Vox?

Castalia House doesn't do rape books.

Yet.

Anonymous VD January 19, 2015 8:28 PM  

Would you publish Bakker, Vox?

Not on the basis of his books that I've read. He has talent, but he doesn't know what to do with it except try to show off how smart he is. And he's far too sexually obsessed.

OpenID standingagainsttheworld January 21, 2015 5:53 AM  

@VD

How do you turn a rabbit into a wolf? You say it is very hard to do so. But how does this transformation occur and under what circumstances?

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