Sunday, August 17, 2014

2014 Hugo Awards - My Predictions

Here are my predictions for today's winners, in the categories I've read. Let's see how wrong I am. :)

Best Novel:
I voted for Ancillary Justice.
I predict Ancillary Justice will win.

Ancillary Justice has won pretty much every other award so far this year, as far as I've seen.
I don't think Wheel of Time can win. I think it will have a lot of strong supporters, and it might even come in first or second place if you look ONLY at the "1" votes on the ballots, but I don't think it will have very many second or third place votes. With the way the Hugo voting system works, that means it's very unlikely that it will win. I'm not sure it will perfectly mirror the voting pattern we saw for Anthem in the 1939 Retro-Hugo's; I'm not sure Wheel of Time will wind up in last place. But it's possible.
The Best Novel race is really weird this year.
There are factions sworn to vote Wheel of Time in last place, below No Award, because they don't think it belongs on the ballot in this category. (Plus a lot of people just really, really don't like Wheel of Time.)
There are factions sworn to vote Correia in last place, below No Award, because of his trolling of the awards this year.
There are factions sworn to vote the works published by Orbit in last place, below No Award, because Orbit did not include the entirety of the works in the Voter's Packet, and chose instead to include only excerpts. That covers the three remaining nominees - Ancillary Justice, Neptune's Brood, and Parasite.
Will the best work really win this year? Or will it come down to a numbers game - which faction contains more pissed off people? I really hope it'll even out and the best work will win.

Best Novella:
I voted for Six Gun Snow White.
I predict.... well, this one is tricky. My gut feeling is that Equoid will probably win. It may be kindof close, though, between Equoid, Six Gun Snow White, and The Chaplain's Legacy. I think chances are pretty high that I'm going to be unhappy with the outcome of this race.

Best Novelette:
I voted for The Waiting Stars.
I predict... hm, this one is tricky, too. There were three I liked a lot, and I've seen all three getting a lot of love. I think probably The Truth of Fact, the Truth of Feeling will win. I really, really want The Waiting Stars to win, but I've seen a lot of people saying they didn't really get it, it didn't click for them. The Lady Astronaut of Mars was also really good and has been getting a lot of love. I think this race is also going to be very close. I'll be happy if any of these three win. Really, really want The Waiting Stars though. :)

Best Short Story:
I voted for "Selkie Stories Are For Losers."
I predict... that this will be another close one. Probably "The Ink Readers of Doi Saket," or possibly "The Water That Falls on You From Nowhere," will win.

Best Dramatic Presentation Long Form:
I voted for Iron Man.
I predict Gravity will win, which will make me unhappy, but oh well.

Best Dramatic Presentation Short Form:
I voted for Doctor Who: "The Day of the Doctor."
I predict the Red Wedding will win, and I will roll my eyes and be disgusted.

Best Fancast:
I voted for Tea and Jeopardy.
I can't predict who will win this one - I have absolutely no idea. There are too many of them, and I don't have a good feel for what kind of podcast other people love.

John W. Campbell Award for Best New Writer:
I voted for Benjanun Sriduangkaew.
I predict ... hm. Probably either Sofia Samatar or Ramez Naam. They're both in their final year of eligibility for this award, and I've seen a lot of love for them both.

Let's see how wrong I am! :) I'll be happy with anything that I voted above "No Award" winning in its category, even if it wasn't my favorite in the category. That's my understanding of how I'm supposed to use "No Award" - anything I think deserves the award goes above the line, anything I think doesn't deserve the award goes below the line.

Of course, anything that wins would win because a lot of somebodies think it deserves a Hugo. So even if it makes me unhappy, it's all good. Our diversity keeps the field interesting.

A little less than three hours before the award ceremony! I so wish I was there this year.

Thursday, August 14, 2014

1939 Retro Hugo Award Winners

The 1939 Retro Hugo Awards were presented today at LonCon3!

The full details of the voting statistics and all nominated works are up on the LonCon3 web site. Interesting. I was wondering why The Hobbit wasn't on the ballot, since it was one of the eligible novels called out at the Hugo ceremony last year! Turns out .. it wasn't quite eligible. Published in 1937. Oopsie!

Wasn't my top vote, but I fully expected it would win. My choice, Out of the Silent Planet, came in second, barely beating Galactic Patrol. I'm happy with the results. My ballot.
  • “Who Goes There?” by Don A Stuart [John W. Campbell] (Astounding Science-Fiction, August 1938)
Also not my top vote, but I also fully expected it would win. And it did. By a LOT. I'm happy with this result too. I was surprised that my top vote came in second-to-last. That's how it goes sometimes! Not surprising to see Anthem take last place. My ballot.  

Incidentally, the data on the voting for Best Novella is kind of fun. If the voting system had looked ONLY at the votes for Top Spot, Anthem would have come in second. The way the Hugo voting works, Anthem was in trouble, because it didn't get very many second or third place votes. Once the entirety of everyone's ranked ballots were taken into account, Anthem came in dead last, and only just barely beat No Award. It had a group of strong supporters, and most everybody else hated it. I expect a similar pattern for Wheel of Time in the 2014 Best Novel voting. This is why I don't think Wheel of Time can win, even though it has a lot of supporters. Like Anthem, most people seem to either love it or hate it. Note, I'm not saying Wheel of Time and Anthem are even remotely similar to each other - I'm just betting the voting pattern for their categories will be similar.
  • “Rule 18” by Clifford D. Simak (Astounding Science-Fiction, July 1938)
I didn't vote in this category. I couldn't get my hands on two of the nominees - and this was one of those two. Since it won, I will make an effort again to find it! 
  • “How We Went to Mars” by Arthur C. Clarke (Amateur Science Stories, March 1938)
This one was my top choice. It was just too much fun. Definitely happy with this result! My ballot.
  • The War of the Worlds by H. G. Wells. Written by Howard Koch & Anne Froelick, directed by Orson Welles (The Mercury Theater on the Air, CBS)
Also my top choice. Almost everybody's top choice. This one was a landslide. The invasion of the Retro Hugo Awards Ceremony by Martians who were eventually defeated by Con Crud foretold this category's winner. My ballot.

I didn't really have enough information to vote in any of the rest of these categories:
  • John W. Campbell
  • Virgil Finlay
  • Imagination! edited by Forrest J Ackerman, Morojo, and T. Bruce Yerke
  • Ray Bradbury
They also gave out a few special awards:
  • Jerry Siegel & Joe Shuster - Creators of Superman (Superman #1 came out in 1938)
I confess, I'm a bit confused about the other special awards that were given out - were they part of the 1939 Retro-Hugo's, or were they part of the 2014 Hugo's? The Big Heart Award, First Fandom award, First Fandom Posthumous Hall of Fame Award, and Excellence in Collecting? I don't see the special awards anywhere but the Twitter feed at the moment. Nothing on the LonCon3 or Hugo Awards pages that I can find.