Nebulas, Hugos and Dragons. Oh, my…

Last week I received word that two members of the Science Fiction & Fantasy Writers of America had nominated my novel, Escaping Infinity, for this year’s Best Sci-Fi novel in the Nebula Awards.

Sadly, I got to enjoy the news for less than 24 hours because the next day the SFWA released the list of final nominees and my book did not garner enough nominations to make the top five. That being said, I wish the best of luck to the five finalists as well as all of the other final nominees in all of the other categories.

For a little-known writer like me, having his first full-length attempt at a sci-fi novel (Maelstrom is more of a novella) get nominated at all is a pretty special accomplishment and motivates me to get my next sci-fi project finished to see if I can make a run at making it to the final five next time.

The Nebula Awards are the first of three major sci-fi writing awards. The next one up is the Hugos. Getting a Hugo nomination, much less winning the award, used to be quite the feather in a writer’s cap. Sadly, in recent years, the award has been hijacked by a group that has steered the award more toward the most politically acceptable writer instead of the best-written work.

You’ve probably heard about the recent attempts by two groups, the Sad Puppies and the Rabid Puppies, to bring this bias to light and to try to return the Hugos to recognizing the best science fiction regardless of the political viewpoints of the nominees.

While I was somewhat late to the conflict, I publicly aligned myself with the Sad Puppies and that means I will never see a nomination for, much less getting my hands on, a Hugo Award. And I am perfectly fine with that. I may not have fought with the winning side, but I fought with the right side.

Which brings us to the Dragon Awards. Started last year, the Dragon Award is connected with DragonCon, a convention that sees nearly 70,000 visitors (WorldCon which presents the Hugos doesn’t see a sixth of that in attendance numbers) flood downtown Atlanta on Labor Day weekend.

The awards are nominated by, and voted on by, the fans. Better yet, it is free. No buying memberships, as is required for the Nebula and Hugo awards, and there is no ballot-box stuffing. The folks that run the Dragons have seen to that from what I am told.

Last year’s winners were all excellent choices and they beat out a solid field of nominees.And I expect this year’s field to be just as awesome.

I’m also hoping that my humble little novel will find its way into the final nominees in Atlanta in September and here’s where you can help out.

Follow this link: 2017 Dragon Award Nominations, fill out the required contact field and check the little box below to register to vote after nominations close on July 24th. Then work your way through all of the categories and nominate whomever you feel is worthy for any category you want. You don’t have to nominate in every category either, nor is there a minimum number of nominations that you have to make.

Once you’re done, and I sincerely hope you put Escaping Infinity and my name in the first category of Best Science Fiction Novel, click the submit button and you’re done until August when you should receive an e-mail with the form to vote for the nominees.

If you’re wondering who I plan to nominate and vote for, that will be a post I’ll be making a little later on. In the meantime, here’s what all the ruckus is about:

dragon_award-221x300

 

 

3 thoughts on “Nebulas, Hugos and Dragons. Oh, my…

    1. I know this won’t set well with the tin-foil hat crowd (i.e. Contrarius & China Mike’s Vile 770 crowd) but the Dragon Awards were never the Puppy’s. Were the Puppies the first to recognize the potential of the brand new Dragon Awards in 2016? Of course.

      Why? Because the Dragon Awards are everything the Puppies have been saying the Hugos – and to some extent, the Nebulas – used to be and should be again: Open to everyone and without excluding any person or group for any alleged “wrongthink” crimes.

      The 2017 Dragon Award finalists – as originally announced – was a perfect mixture of all of the “factions” in SF/F (and lord knows I wish we didn’t have these “factions” at all) with someone for every group to get behind and support.

      Are there groups campaigning for their choices? Of course. The Puppies, the Hugoites, The RedPandas, the folks that are neutral and just want to enjoy good SF/F etc, etc. They all had their favorites. And when you look at the winners from Sunday, it seems everyone walked away with a winner they backed.

      That is part of what makes the Dragons the perfect SF/F award. It isn’t shutting anyone out of the process like the Hugos and Nebulas have. It is literally open to every single one of the 7+ Billion inhabitants of Planet Earth who can access a computer and fill out a ballot.

      No political BS filter keeping out the “wrong sort”, no rules designed to pre-determine the nominees, no ability for a deep-pocketed publisher to buy an award annually, no Wooden Assholes, No “No Award” designed to embarrass the occasional “wrong thinker” that somehow slipped past the gatekeepers.

      A pure award to allow fans of SF/F to express themselves.

      I’ve heard the ridiculous claims: There’s a secret cabal running the Dragons. (There isn’t) They won’t release all of the numbers so its fake! (No it isn’t and I for one am glad all they release are total nominations – 140,000 or an average of 9,600 per category – and 8,000 ballots turned in for the final vote). And I’m pretty sure the company they use to process the ballots are able to filter out the multiple votes from single IP addresses – which one of the Dragon haters bragged about doing, which begs the question: if he/she was so willing to do it in the Dragons, seems logical to assume they did the same for the Hugos.

      That is all the info we need. Double the Hugos and more than the Nebulas and in only its second year. The Dragons will only grow from here and more and more people will participate. This means we will get a true representation of what really is the best of SF/F fandom – I would argue we got that this year.

      And no, we don’t need to know who finished 2nd thru 8th in each category. We don’t hear this in the Oscars or any other major award. All that matters is who won and the rest of the nominees share the honor of being Finalists. No shaming, no hard feelings.

      The funniest claim I’ve heard over the last 24 hours is that the Dragons were sexist because only one woman won: Patty Jenkins for Wonder Woman (my pick for Best Sci-Fi/Fantasy Film for the record). There were several women and minorities nominated and more than one of them won. For the record, two women withdrew before the final vote so this lowered the chances to have more than one woman win.

      My question to those making this claim is this: If the Dragons are sexist because a majority of the winners were men, does this mean we must view the 2017 Hugos as sexist because a majority of the winners were women?

      This is my primary complaint with the SJW/Antifa/BLM movements. They aren’t interested in true justice. All they want is payback for wrongs committed years – sometimes decades – before they were born and against people who have never wronged them. (BTW, before you make the claim, I have even less use for the KKK, White Supremacist crowds)

      Frankly, I tire of this nonsense. I prefer that books, films, TV shows and games be judged solely on their content and not solely on the skin color, genitalia and/or political philosophy of their creator(s). Maybe I’m asking too much of the human race, but as you can tell from the stories I write, I tend to try to have a hopeful outlook for the future of mankind.

      In the meantime, I consider it an honor for my novel, Escaping Infinity, to be a Dragon Award Finalist. Losing to the incredible writing duo of James S.A. Corey is nothing to hang one’s head over. I certainly hope I earn the honor of being a finalist again in the future and maybe even one day collect one of those amazing-looking awards.

      And I will continue to support the Dragon Awards as much as I can. I will nominate. I will vote. I will continue to urge as many people who will listen to me to do so as well.

      Because I want the Dragons to be everything the Hugos and Nebulas used to be but are no longer: A true representation of the very best of Science Fiction & Fantasy.

      Like

    2. I know this won’t set well with the tin-foil hat crowd (i.e. Contrarius & China Mike’s Vile 770 crowd) but the Dragon Awards were never the Puppy’s. Were the Puppies the first to recognize the potential of the brand new Dragon Awards in 2016? Of course.

      Why? Because the Dragon Awards are everything the Puppies have been saying the Hugos – and to some extent, the Nebulas – used to be and should be again: Open to everyone and without excluding any person or group for any alleged “wrongthink” crimes.

      The 2017 Dragon Award finalists – as originally announced – was a perfect mixture of all of the “factions” in SF/F (and lord knows I wish we didn’t have these “factions” at all) with someone for every group to get behind and support.

      Are there groups campaigning for their choices? Of course. The Puppies, the Hugoites, The RedPandas, the folks that are neutral and just want to enjoy good SF/F etc, etc. They all had their favorites. And when you look at the winners from Sunday, it seems everyone walked away with a winner they backed.

      That is part of what makes the Dragons the perfect SF/F award. It isn’t shutting anyone out of the process like the Hugos and Nebulas have. It is literally open to every single one of the 7+ Billion inhabitants of Planet Earth who can access a computer and fill out a ballot.

      No political BS filter keeping out the “wrong sort”, no rules designed to pre-determine the nominees, no ability for a deep-pocketed publisher to buy an award annually, no Wooden Assholes, No “No Award” designed to embarrass the occasional “wrong thinker” that somehow slipped past the gatekeepers.

      A pure award to allow fans of SF/F to express themselves.

      I’ve heard the ridiculous claims: There’s a secret cabal running the Dragons. (There isn’t) They won’t release all of the numbers so its fake! (No it isn’t and I for one am glad all they release are total nominations – 140,000 or an average of 9,600 per category – and 8,000 ballots turned in for the final vote). And I’m pretty sure the company they use to process the ballots are able to filter out the multiple votes from single IP addresses – which one of the Dragon haters bragged about doing, which begs the question: if he/she was so willing to do it in the Dragons, seems logical to assume they did the same for the Hugos.

      That is all the info we need. Double the Hugos and more than the Nebulas and in only its second year. The Dragons will only grow from here and more and more people will participate. This means we will get a true representation of what really is the best of SF/F fandom – I would argue we got that this year.

      And no, we don’t need to know who finished 2nd thru 8th in each category. We don’t hear this in the Oscars or any other major award. All that matters is who won and the rest of the nominees share the honor of being Finalists. No shaming, no hard feelings.

      The funniest claim I’ve heard over the last 24 hours is that the Dragons were sexist because only one woman won: Patty Jenkins for Wonder Woman (my pick for Best Sci-Fi/Fantasy Film for the record). There were several women and minorities nominated and more than one of them won. For the record, two women withdrew before the final vote so this lowered the chances to have more than one woman win.

      My question to those making this claim is this: If the Dragons are sexist because a majority of the winners were men, does this mean we must view the 2017 Hugos as sexist because a majority of the winners were women?

      This is my primary complaint with the SJW/Antifa/BLM movements. They aren’t interested in true justice. All they want is payback for wrongs committed years – sometimes decades – before they were born and against people who have never wronged them. (BTW, before you make the claim, I have even less use for the KKK, White Supremacist crowds)

      Frankly, I tire of this nonsense. I prefer that books, films, TV shows and games be judged solely on their content and not solely on the skin color, genitalia and/or political philosophy of their creator(s). Maybe I’m asking too much of the human race, but as you can tell from the stories I write, I tend to try to have a hopeful outlook for the future of mankind.

      In the meantime, I consider it an honor for my novel, Escaping Infinity, to be a Dragon Award Finalist. Losing to the incredible writing duo of James S.A. Corey is nothing to hang one’s head over. I certainly hope I earn the honor of being a finalist again in the future and maybe even one day collect one of those amazing-looking awards.

      And I will continue to support the Dragon Awards as much as I can. I will nominate. I will vote. I will continue to urge as many people who will listen to me to do so as well.

      Because I want the Dragons to be everything the Hugos and Nebulas used to be but are no longer: A true representation of the very best of Science Fiction & Fantasy.

      Like

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