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Monday, June 29, 2015

Irony

Ginger on said:
With respect to controversy, need I mention that people are still arguing over the Original Controversy? The novella that is still published as “Genesis”, in which the main characters are created from “earth” — clearly science fiction, come on — and so on; the schisms created by the warring camps has only grown greater with the centuries since its publication. In contrast, Gilgamesh was completely overlooked, probably because it was mis-labeled a saga and not best novel; there may also have been some anti-Ur sentiment floating around. And what has ever been nominated out of the Aztec, or Pueblo/Hopi/Zuni, or indeed, any of the native North American traditions? They’ve clearly been completely blocked off by a shadowy cabal.
That made me laugh out loud. What has ever been nominated out of the Aztec, or Pueblo/Hopi/Zuni, or indeed, any of the native North American traditions?

The eminent Hugo Awards historian Mike Glyer knows: "I have it on the highest authority that the answer is Vox Day."

And speaking of shadowy cabals, I owe my record-setting two Editor nominations to the whining machinations of one Patrick Nielsen Hayden. After he was publicly crying about how he "acquired" not one, but THREE of 2006's best novel nominees and still didn't win Best Professional Editor, the Worldcon voters magically created a new award he could win.
In a post to his own weblog, Scalzi expresses regret that I personally didn’t make the “Best Professional Editor” ballot, despite the fact that I acquired three out of the five Best Novel nominees and personally shepherded two of them to publication. This is generous of John, and I wouldn’t have declined the nomination, but in fact as every book editor in our field knows, while the Best Professional Hugo is regularly awarded to high-profile magazine editors and anthologists, it only goes to book editors if we die. It’s for this reason that there’s a pending proposal to split the editorial award into “long form” and “short form” categories; whether this will be ratified by this year’s Worldcon Business Meeting is anyone’s guess. Personally, I note that David Hartwell has been a finalist for Best Professional Editor 15 times, leaving aside his 17 further nominations for the New York Review of Science Fiction, and that he’s never won a Hugo of any kind. Pretty shabby treatment for an individual who is by any measure one of the best and most influential editors in the eighty-year history of our field. Whether or not the World SF Convention decides to reform the editor award, it’s years past time one went to Hartwell. 
And the "reform" came to pass, the Best Tor Editor award was duly created, and the awards went to: Patrick Nielsen Hayden, David Hartwell, David Hartwell, and Patrick Nielsen Hayden for the first four years before the two of them took themselves out of the running long enough to let four-time second-place finisher Lou Anders win. But two wins in four years wasn't enough for PNH, as he threw his hat back in the ring to collect a third one in 2013.

Clearly it's just CRAZY to observe the existence of a Tor cabal. It's entirely obvious that they won the Locus Award for Best Publisher for the last 27 straight years through nothing but hard work and consistently publishing bad-to-reprehensible books.

Labels:

45 Comments:

Blogger cavalier973 June 29, 2015 2:19 PM  

Gilgamesh started out as a badly written Noah fan-fic that the author expanded into a full blown novel at the encouragement of social justice cavemen.

Blogger automatthew June 29, 2015 2:29 PM  

If You Were Leviathan, My Love.

Blogger Daniel June 29, 2015 2:30 PM  

“Science fiction has to a certain extent thrived in the past because the distribution apparatus and the non-specialty booksellers never quite grasped that there are subtle distinctions inside the field. I wonder sometimes just how much effort we should go to educate them.”

“I’m sometimes a little reluctant to let on that a given writer has ‘considerable literary quality,'” [Nielsen Hayden] explains. “The sales apparatus knows what that means: it means it doesn’t sell very many copies.”

Patrick Nielsen Hayden, lamenting the market through midwitted elitism since 1991.

Blogger Alexander June 29, 2015 2:33 PM  

Just wait until Ginger finds out about SFWA's treatment of Native Americans.

I note that even Ginger draws the line of snarking about where are teh Africans, descending the civilization rungs only as far down as the Aztec. I take it that even the SJW appreciates that a written language is a prerequisite to a Hugo.

Blogger Salt June 29, 2015 2:34 PM  

It's just OBVIOUS that they won 27 straight Locus Awards for Best Publisher through nothing but hard work and consistently publishing bad-to-reprehensible books.

ZING!

It's to easy for you, Vox, like shooting ducks on the pond.

Anonymous Donn #0114 June 29, 2015 3:11 PM  

To be honest it's kind of hard to distribute several hundred sets of cuneiform tablets. Petroglyphs, fetish dolls, and live performance art to the judges.

Blogger ScuzzaMan June 29, 2015 3:18 PM  

"...they won 27 straight Locus Awards for Best Publisher through nothing but hard work and consistently publishing bad-to-reprehensible books."

Hey - the neo-nazis helped, too!

Blogger Rabbi B June 29, 2015 3:36 PM  

"Hey - the neo-nazis helped, too!"

You forgot UNREPENTANT!

Anonymous Bobbala June 29, 2015 3:45 PM  

Funny. Even the atheist don't really argue that man didn't come from the dirt. The only argument is design or chance. The earth part is pretty settled.

Anonymous Brother Thomas June 29, 2015 4:02 PM  

Is she really this naive? We all return to Earth. We're all dirt in the end. She should dig up some of her ancestors and take a look.

Anonymous WhiteKnightLeo #0368 June 29, 2015 4:20 PM  

Just to be sure I understand the joke (I laughed and then wasn't sure I understood the implied punchline): the point is that none of those groups had written languages, and therefore left no written records, right? The primitive groups, I mean.

Anonymous Brother Thomas June 29, 2015 4:28 PM  

From Hamlet
Act V, Scene I: A Churchyard

HAMLET
Let me see.

Takes the skull

Alas, poor Yorick! I knew him, Horatio: a fellow
of infinite jest, of most excellent fancy: he hath
borne me on his back a thousand times; and now, how
abhorred in my imagination it is! my gorge rims at
it. Here hung those lips that I have kissed I know
not how oft. Where be your gibes now? your
gambols? your songs? your flashes of merriment,
that were wont to set the table on a roar? Not one
now, to mock your own grinning? quite chap-fallen?
Now get you to my lady's chamber, and tell her, let
her paint an inch thick, to this favour she must
come; make her laugh at that. Prithee, Horatio, tell
me one thing.

HORATIO
What's that, my lord?

HAMLET
Dost thou think Alexander looked o' this fashion i'
the earth?

HORATIO
E'en so.

HAMLET
And smelt so? pah!

Puts down the skull

HORATIO
E'en so, my lord.

HAMLET
To what base uses we may return, Horatio! Why may
not imagination trace the noble dust of Alexander,
till he find it stopping a bung-hole?

HORATIO
'Twere to consider too curiously, to consider so.

HAMLET
No, faith, not a jot; but to follow him thither with
modesty enough, and likelihood to lead it: as
thus: Alexander died, Alexander was buried,
Alexander returneth into dust; the dust is earth; of
earth we make loam; and why of that loam, whereto he
was converted, might they not stop a beer-barrel?
Imperious Caesar, dead and turn'd to clay,
Might stop a hole to keep the wind away:
O, that that earth, which kept the world in awe,
Should patch a wall to expel the winter flaw!
But soft! but soft! aside: here comes the king.

Blogger Cataline Sergius June 29, 2015 4:37 PM  

it only goes to book editors if we die.

I don't seem to remember Jim Baen winning it.

Although I expect before too long they will announce a special Jim Baen Award, Given annually to the writer least likely to be hired by Jim Baen.

Anonymous FriarBob June 29, 2015 4:39 PM  

GRRM will win the first four in a row, then...

Anonymous Krul June 29, 2015 5:15 PM  

KING CLAUDIUS Now, Hamlet, where's Polonius?

HAMLET At supper.

KING CLAUDIUS At supper! where?

HAMLET Not where he eats, but where he is eaten: a certain convocation of politic worms are e'en at him. Your worm is your only emperor for diet: we fat all creatures else to fat us, and we fat ourselves for maggots: your fat king and your lean beggar is but variable service, two dishes, but to one table: that's the end.

KING CLAUDIUS Alas, alas!

HAMLET A man may fish with the worm that hath eat of a king, and eat of the fish that hath fed of that worm.

KING CLAUDIUS What dost you mean by this?

HAMLET Nothing but to show you how a king may go a progress through the guts of a beggar.

Blogger Rantor June 29, 2015 5:27 PM  

@WhiteKnightLeo,

Why are you claiming that these primitive groups were illiterate? That is certainly very ethnicist of you. I have it on good authority that the Aztecs were capable of writing, they just had to be taught how to do so by Spanish invaders.

Blogger Rantor June 29, 2015 5:30 PM  

I must censor myself for calling these groups primitive. That too is seen as a perjorative by many, let us refer to them as classic groups, sounds so much better, like Beethoven or some such.

Blogger Alia D. June 29, 2015 6:07 PM  

This hits on why SJWs will never totally conquered Science-Fiction. The Novel per se presupposes Christian ideas of time, heroes, and causes. ( http://www.amazon.com/Book-that-Made-Your-World-ebook/dp/B004Z70982/ref=zg_bs_156622011_21 ) You can write a good novel without white characters but if you go overboard with resting "western colonialist ideas" and try to eliminate biblical world view entirely you end up eliminating story as well.

Blogger bearspaw June 29, 2015 6:52 PM  

And I bet they all thought they were going to live happily ever after.

Blogger Ursus Maritimus Australialis #255 June 29, 2015 7:18 PM  

Supreme Dark Lord, I know that you do not not-pay me for my ideas, but...

It occurs to me that perhaps we should all contact Tor and request their entire catalog of books. When they request payment, we can tell them that we don't actually have any money, but we self-identify as billionaires.

Surely they'll go bankrupt from the printing costs.

Blogger Ragin' Dave June 29, 2015 7:32 PM  

"I mean, let’s face it – this is a tough market to break into, and as a new writer what you want to be concentrating on is refining your craft and getting stories out in front of an audience. Not worrying about whether your career is going to be scotched at the outset by culture-war machinations over which you have no control. "

This. Right here. They KNOW their side blasts away without thinking. They KNOW that their side damages people's careers for "wrongthink" or "badthink". They KNOW that their side is utterly reprehensible in how it treats anyone who doesn't march in lockstep with their masters.

They know it. They'll admit it to themselves.

Tell me again how the Puppies of either variety are the source of all evil again?

Blogger Peter Pan June 29, 2015 7:32 PM  

20. Ursus Maritimus Australialis #255 June 29, 2015 7:18 PM
Supreme Dark Lord, I know that you do not not-pay me for my ideas, but...


HAHAHAHAHAHA

Pay? What pay?

Anonymous zen0 June 29, 2015 7:40 PM  

17. Rantor June 29, 2015 5:30 PM

I must censor myself for calling these groups primitive. That too is seen as a perjorative by many, let us refer to them as classic groups, sounds so much better, like Beethoven or some such.


In Canada, our Overlords have taught us to refer to the savages who preceded the dreadful and evil Europeans as "First Nations".

I do not think the Overlords would mind if you borrowed it.


Blogger James Dixon June 29, 2015 7:57 PM  

> "I have it on the highest authority that the answer is Vox Day."

Feather not dot. The gift that keeps on giving. :)

> In Canada, our Overlords have taught us to refer to the savages who preceded the dreadful and evil Europeans as "First Nations".

Well, except that the ones here weren't. We know of at least one that preceded them.

Blogger SirHamster (#201) June 29, 2015 8:06 PM  

HAHAHAHAHAHA

Pay? What pay?


Whips to the back and blows to the head.

And allowing us to keep some of our teeth... this time.

Anonymous Viidad June 29, 2015 8:31 PM  

"In Canada, our Overlords have taught us to refer to the savages who preceded the dreadful and evil Europeans as "First Nations"."

Not "The Old Ones?"

Anonymous map June 29, 2015 8:38 PM  

VD,

OT: have you seen this wonderful link at Heartiste?

https://heartiste.wordpress.com/2015/06/28/comment-of-the-week-the-norm-equalization-case-against-gay-marriage/

Blogger Rantor June 29, 2015 9:24 PM  

First Nations? How can there be First Nations? There can be a First Nation, but, oh this is too difficult. Don't scientists try to tell us that the First Nation came out of Africa though? Then some second, fifth or seventeenth nation crossed a land bridge to get to Canada... Couldn't even be top ten nations in Canada at this point.

Anonymous Anachronda June 29, 2015 9:26 PM  

Not "The Old Ones?"

I was under the impression that "the old ones" was how the first peoples refer to the people *they* stole the land from.

I denounce myself.

Anonymous kfg June 29, 2015 10:10 PM  

The Aztec, like all native Americans of the Mexican (what the "Aztec" actually called themselves) empires, were literate, perhaps for thousands of years, and published their writings in paper books - which burn quite nicely.

Anonymous A Reader June 29, 2015 10:14 PM  

Locus Magazine recently came out with their Award winners. Here is their choice for Best Short Story:
http://www.strangehorizons.com/2015/20150126/1owls-f.shtml

I would be interested in what people think. I'm not clear as to the point of the story.

Anonymous Laz June 30, 2015 12:35 AM  

automatthew: "If You Were Leviathan, My Love."

Ha, I knew it! You're krakenphobic.

OpenID malcolmthecynic June 30, 2015 12:55 AM  

"A Reader",

That was pretty bad. What, exactly, makes that speculative fiction? What I'm seeing is a young girl who is angsting about her father being overseas and a general feeling of being out of place. And...and she likes owls. I'm not really sure that had to do with anything?

While this technically isn't a criticism of the story aspect of it, I did roll my eyes at the small potshot at evil anti-Arab racists.

Her supposed "powers" are vague, and it is highly ambiguous whether or not they're even real.

I finished it, but mostly out of inertia, and always glancing at my sidebar to see how much longer I was supposed to keep scrolling.

It wasn't badly written. Maybe that's why I kept going. But it was, generally, bad.

OpenID eidolon1109 June 30, 2015 1:16 AM  

"It wasn't badly written...But it was, generally, bad."

I skimmed it; couldn't read it all. I was just reading John C. Wright's essay about fiction and it gave me the answer why it wasn't interesting.

The primary issue is that the story doesn't give us a question we want the answer to. It's clear from the quotes that she likes and identifies with owls for some reason, but there's no reason to care why or what about the owls she likes. "Why does this girl like owls" isn't a question that inspires curiosity; kids like lots of things for lots of reasons. More details are filled in but no interest is built. In a good story we'd be hungry for the details; here, they're like someone placing more and more apples in front of you when youre not hungry. They're not terrible but one isn't sure what one is supposed to do with them.

The ending was just stupid. What's the point of an ending where I don't understand what was said? How am I going to walk away with anything but annoyance from that? What feeling does the writer expect a non-Arabic-reading person to have at the end? I don't get it.

OpenID eidolon1109 June 30, 2015 1:24 AM  

You wouldn't think it'd be that hard. How about it starts with: "Anisa was 12 years old when she first learned to fly," or "when she first learned to hunt her prey." At least give the audience something interesting to work with, something tangentially related to the vague powers thing and the owls.

The SJW made it worse, but it was already a poor story. John C. Wright's sarcastic version of "if you were a dinosaur, my love" is ten times as good, and it has the advantage of actually being sci-fi.

Anonymous Bz June 30, 2015 3:24 AM  

"Clearly it's just CRAZY to observe the existence of a Tor cabal. It's entirely obvious that they won the Locus Award for Best Publisher for the last 27 straight years through nothing but hard work and consistently publishing bad-to-reprehensible books."

Marvellous. I think the authors were mostly a rum sort as well, which has to have made things harder. No wonder Tor editors win the awards when they for starters have to work with those people, moulding their hateful screeds into something that can be published.

Anonymous Bz June 30, 2015 3:42 AM  

About the owl story: I found Anisa to be insufferable right away, even in the first section. But it can nevertheless give you some inspiration in how to address SJWs: when they want to talk to you, just tell them "My name is Robert" (pronounced in German, say), then turn away and refuse to answer until they get the pronounciation exactly right. Just like they prefer it. If there's somewhere to complain about their cultural insensitivity, do it.

Anonymous Bz June 30, 2015 4:00 AM  

More on the owl story: in the last section, the welsh translates to "the truth about owls" while the arabic translates to "the truth about the complex Album" (courtesy of google). Well, that was profound.

A mostly annoying YA story, but perhaps best read as being about one more lost soul who would be more content in her native country rather than aggrieved and entitled in foreign lands. In essence, someone suffering the consequences of the insane immigration policies of the weirdly leering, hopping, glassy-eyed masters of the West. So in this respect, some here might actually agree with the main thrust of the story. I'm not sure that was entirely intended by the prize givers.

I couldn't be bothered to look closely for any subtle SF/F content. Didn't seem to be the point, as so often.

Anonymous zen0 June 30, 2015 5:29 AM  

26. Viidad June 29, 2015 8:31 PM

"In Canada, our Overlords have taught us to refer to the savages who preceded the dreadful and evil Europeans as "First Nations"."

Not "The Old Ones?"


Our Overlords have taught us that being historically correct is for little minds. Being politically correct frees one from the oppression of history, and we all know oppression is very, very bad.

Please don't be bad, Viidad.

Anonymous MendoScot June 30, 2015 8:13 AM  

And Fred Reed schools Cornell West.

Vox, Fred has moved his site.

Anonymous A Reader June 30, 2015 9:11 AM  

I appreciative of the comments on the owl story I linked to, and for Vox Day allowing posts on it. If Vox Day thinks its too off topic, I will stop.

OpenID malcolmthecynic June 30, 2015 11:02 AM  

Bz,

Look at the alternate translation options. Roughly, it's "The truth about owls is complex".

Blogger Kull June 30, 2015 12:28 PM  

Hayden has no shame. Game the fuck out of the hugos up to and including making an award for yourself. But I guess puppy slates are worse? These people, it is beyond my ability to describe. Breathtaking. I am a new writer, desperate for markets, desperate to get a break. But I would rather simply not succeed than deal with people like that. It is, of course, academic, as I do not write the type of mfa navel gazing schlock they prefer anyway.

Anonymous Bz June 30, 2015 12:45 PM  

malcolmthecynic, well, that does make more sense. Though it still doesn't take me beyond 'oh, is that so?'

Anonymous Bz June 30, 2015 12:50 PM  

Perhaps it's significant that arabs apparently (courtesy of google) consider owls to be bad omens? In some instances, snatchers of children. Well, I'll leave that investigation for later myself.

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