The Sad Demise Of The Hugos And The Nebulas

This little nugget of information shot across the Twitterverse this week:

The Hugo Awards, once considered the greatest award any sci-fi/fantasy creator could receive, drew 1,246 nominating votes out of the millions of SF/F fans and creators worldwide. I haven’t seen any recent numbers from the Nebulas but I would not be shocked to discover they aren’t much better.

Escaping Infinity (2017 Dragon Award Finalist)

By comparison, The Dragon Awards has drawn more nominations and final votes each year since they first began in 2016 and number into the five digit range, far surpassing the Hugos and the Nebulas combined. And both awards have no one to blame for their collective downfall but themselves. Both awards, dating back several years, lost their purpose: Finding and rewarding the best SF/F produced in a given year.

Instead, they embarked on the “Wokian Way”, disregarded great works, and embraced lesser material based on the creators’ sex and race rather than on the quality of the works themselves. Any creator deemed unworthy, 99.9% white males oddly enough, was run out of each organization and their works blacklisted from consideration. Predictably, with each passing year the Hugos and the Nebulas have become less popular, as shown by the declining number in participating voters.

The Dragon Awards, open to all who enjoy SF/F around the world and free to participate in – unlike the Hugos and Nebulas – are thriving. They are also more diverse and inclusive than the Hugos and Nebulas. And here’s the kicker, they are so without deliberately trying. Without any doubt, the Dragon Awards have become the premier award in SF/F. Since 2016, just being a Finalist, as I was in 2017 with Escaping Infinity, is a much better honor than being a Hugo or Nebula winner. 

There is another award that has moved ahead of the fallen Hugos and Nebulas, one that has only been around for three years. The Helicon Awards, presented by the Helicon Society (full disclosure: I founded the Helicon Society in 2018), are not a vote-based award. Rather, a selection committee spends the entire year gathering eligible works and then meets numerous times before selecting a winner in each category. If you look at the lists of winners I think you’ll agree it is a very diverse field filled with incredible works.

I see a bright future ahead for both the Dragons and the Helicons, even as the Hugos and Nebulas fade into their self-inflicted obscurity.

Nominations are open for this year’s Dragon Awards and you can fill out the form to nominate your favorites in each category and, again, its free and pretty quick and easy too. Since, by charter (and unlike past Presidents of the SFWA who allowed themselves to be nominated for Nebulas), as I am the founder of the Helicons I am barred from winning a Helicon for life, I’d like to ask you to consider nominating Galen’s Way for Best Sci-Fi Novel in this year’s Dragon Awards.

Here’s the link for the Dragons:  2021 Dragon Awards Nomination Ballot.

And if you haven’t yet had a chance to read Galen’s Way, here are the links for it:

To buy at a discounted price directly from me in MOBI, EPUB or PDF format.

To buy an e-book on Amazon.

To purchase a paperback copy.

To purchase a hardback copy. 

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