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Among Others Wins Hugo For Best Novel

Soulskill posted about a year and a half ago | from the congratulations-to-all dept.

Books 115

The 2012 Hugo Award ceremony has completed at Chicon 7, and Among Others by Jo Walton has been given the award for Best Novel. The Man Who Bridged the Mist by Kij Johnson won for Best Novella, and The Paper Menagerie won for Best Short Story. Doctor Who had three nominations for Best Dramatic Presentation (Short Form), and ended up taking home the award for the episode "The Doctor's Wife," which was written by Neil Gaiman and directed by Richard Clark. Season 1 of Game of Thrones won Best Dramatic Presentation (Long Form), edging out Hugo and Captain America. Ursula Vernon was awarded the Best Graphic Story Hugo for Digger. See below for the full list of winners.Best Novel: Among Others by Jo Walton (Tor)

Best Novella: “The Man Who Bridged the Mist” by Kij Johnson (Asimov's, September/October 2011)

Best Novelette: “Six Months, Three Days” by Charlie Jane Anders (Tor.com)

Best Short Story: “The Paper Menagerie” by Ken Liu (The Magazine of Fantasy & Science Fiction, March/April 2011)

Best Related Work: The Encyclopedia of Science Fiction, Third Edition edited by John Clute, David Langford, Peter Nicholls, and Graham Sleight (Gollancz)

Best Graphic Story: Digger by Ursula Vernon (Sofawolf Press)

Best Dramatic Presentation (Long Form): Game of Thrones (Season 1), created by David Benioff and D. B. Weiss; written by David Benioff, D. B. Weiss, Bryan Cogman, Jane Espenson, and George R. R. Martin; directed by Brian Kirk, Daniel Minahan, Tim van Patten, and Alan Taylor (HBO)

Best Dramatic Presentation (Short Form): “The Doctor's Wife” (Doctor Who), written by Neil Gaiman; directed by Richard Clark (BBC Wales)

Best Editor (Short Form): Sheila Williams

Best Editor (Long Form): Betsy Wollheim

Best Professional Artist: John Picacio

Best Semiprozine: Locus edited by Liza Groen Trombi, Kirsten Gong-Wong, et al.

Best Fanzine: SF Signal edited by John DeNardo

Best Fan Writer: Jim C. Hines

Best Fan Artist: Maurine Starkey

Best Fancast: SF Squeecast, Lynne M. Thomas, Seanan McGuire, Paul Cornell, Elizabeth Bear, and Catherynne M. Valente

For a full breakdown of how all 1922 ballots were cast, check this PDF.

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115 comments

I must be getting old (1)

Anonymous Coward | about a year and a half ago | (#41211013)

Season 1 of Game of Thrones won Best Dramatic Presentation (Long Form), edging out Hugo and Captain America.

While I haven't seen Hugo, Captain America had no Dramatic Presentation (or any Presentation, really) to speak of. How did it get to the top contender list??
(First post?)

Re:I must be getting old (-1, Troll)

Anonymous Coward | about a year and a half ago | (#41211065)

Season 1 of Game of Thrones won Best Dramatic Presentation (Long Form), edging out Hugo and Captain America.

While I haven't seen Hugo, Captain America had no Dramatic Presentation (or any Presentation, really) to speak of. How did it get to the top contender list??

(First post?)

That's your problem? Season 1 of Game of Thrones was awful. Several hours of bad acting punctuated by plentiful swearing and occasional bad soft porn

Re:I must be getting old (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year and a half ago | (#41211111)

are you trolling or what? 1st season of GoT was pretty awesome

Re:I must be getting old (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year and a half ago | (#41211479)

I'm convinced that literally everyone who talks shit about GoT is just trolling or trying to be a contrarian. I say this because none of them say things like "It's pretty well done, it's just not my thing" or anything to that affect, they all feel the need to pretend it's the most aweful show on television.

Re:I must be getting old (1)

Anonymous Coward | about a year and a half ago | (#41211507)

"It's pretty well done, it's just not my thing"

That's because "well done" is subjective. If they thought it was well done, why would they dislike it? That makes no sense anyway. It's easily possible that they could feel it's the worst show on television.

Re:I must be getting old (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year and a half ago | (#41211815)

" If they thought it was well done, why would they dislike it? "

We would have preferred medium rare.

Re:I must be getting old (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year and a half ago | (#41217237)

If they thought it was well done, why would they dislike it?

Maybe they thought it was well done, within the constraints (10 hrs) imposed upon it. You can do an awesome job of fitting something into some contraints and still end up crippled by those constraints.

e.g. You could impress the hell out of me, by building a jet aircraft out of ice and Jello. If it flies, I will consider you to be a godlike genius. But let's face it: your jet aircraft is also probably going to suck compared most aircraft, because it's made out of ice and Jello. It'll be excellent and terrible at the same time.

I think Season 1 of GoT was indeed pretty darn good, but Season 2 was both 1) pretty bad with the story changes 2) as good as could be expected, and the story changes are defensible even if they piss off the "bookies." Know what I mean? It ain't the book, and can't be the book. (Just like the LotR movies.) So that's both bad and good, where someone might be amazed at the job they did, and also be a little bitter about it too.

Adapting books to TV may be a difficult thing to do.

Re:I must be getting old (1)

tehcyder (746570) | about a year and a half ago | (#41220727)

Anyone who refers to people who read books as "bookies" has automatically lost any credibility they might conceivably have had.

Re:I must be getting old (1)

tehcyder (746570) | about a year and a half ago | (#41220457)

"It's pretty well done, it's just not my thing"

That's because "well done" is subjective. If they thought it was well done, why would they dislike it? That makes no sense anyway. It's easily possible that they could feel it's the worst show on television.

No, it is entirely possible to appreciate that something is well done in its own terms without enjoying it in the slightest.

When I am forced to see something like Downton Abbey, I can say "yes, lovely costumes, nice interior decoration, well defined characters portrayed by good actors" while disliking the whole thing completely.

Everyone has whole genres of film, books or whatever that they simply don't get on with, that doesn't mean they can't appreciate the good things in them. It's just that unless you're a professional critic who needs to achieve some sort of objectivity, life is just too short to keep watching 1950s Hollywood musicals, 1930s Westerns, 1990s romcoms or whatever if they're not your thing.

Re:I must be getting old (1)

Anonymous Coward | about a year and a half ago | (#41211513)

I'm convinced that literally everyone who talks shit about GoT is just trolling or trying to be a contrarian. I say this because none of them say things like "It's pretty well done, it's just not my thing" or anything to that affect, they all feel the need to pretend it's the most aweful show on television.

That's because you're delusional. The only bit of the second half I didn't watch in fast forward was when Joffrey goes back on his word and executes Eddard. The rest of the story is that midget shithead screwing women left right and center in whore houses. Historically inaccurate wenching set in a mythical version of medieval England is definitely not my thing. The costumes varied from good to excellent. The scenery could be quite impressive. But the storyline was shite, and if you think it was good I weep for you.

Re:I must be getting old (4, Insightful)

Anonymous Coward | about a year and a half ago | (#41211559)

The only bit of the second half I didn't watch in fast forward

Yeah, if I watched an entire show in fast forward, I'd think it was pretty bad too. Game of Thrones was pretty awesome when watched at normal speed though.

Re:I must be getting old (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year and a half ago | (#41211935)

The only bit of the second half I didn't watch in fast forward

Yeah, if I watched an entire show in fast forward, I'd think it was pretty bad too. Game of Thrones was pretty awesome when watched at normal speed though.

I watched the first half at normal speed and decided I was wasting my life but didn't want to waste so much.

Why the fuck can't you accept the fact that some people aren't going to like your pet show? That doesn't make those people defective.

Re:I must be getting old (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year and a half ago | (#41212393)

I watched the first half at normal speed and decided I was wasting my life but didn't want to waste so much.

And you proceeded to waste your life continuing to watch it but in double speed?

If you're still feeling masochistic maybe you should watch the entire Harry Potter stuff too, at double speed.

Re:I must be getting old (1)

jollyreaper (513215) | about a year and a half ago | (#41219571)

Historically inaccurate wenching set in a mythical version of medieval England is definitely not my thing.

I don't recall dragons and zombies in my history, either! Game of Thrones is really inaccurate!

Re:I must be getting old (1)

cpu6502 (1960974) | about a year and a half ago | (#41213645)

>>>I'm convinced that literally everyone who talks shit about GoT is just trolling or trying to be a contrarian.

I thought it was boring. I downloaded the whole season but only watched about half of it. Then I lost interest. I'd rather watch a drama about real history. Or alt. history.

Re:I must be getting old (1)

tehcyder (746570) | about a year and a half ago | (#41220425)

I'm convinced that literally everyone who talks shit about GoT is just trolling or trying to be a contrarian.

Right, so GoT is objectively great, and anyone who thinks otherwise must be lying or trolling? I am not a great fantasy fan in the first place, so I'm biased, but I found what I have seen of GoT to be enjoyable in the fairly camp way that Arnie in Conan the Barbarian was. It's like Dallas with swords and tits, which is fine in itself but doesn't mean it's great TV.

Grow up, fanboy. You sound like the vapid, whiny Twilight fans who can't believe that anyone doesn't think they're, like, the greatest evar.

Re:I must be getting old (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year and a half ago | (#41211917)

Season 1 was great. Season 2 will win the Award for the Most Boring Show. Too many characters with too little time each. I quit downloading it, I'd rather watch commercials, they're more entertaining.

Re:I must be getting old (1)

Anonymous Coward | about a year and a half ago | (#41211443)

I was confused too seeing Captain America winning anything with "Dramatic" in the name, but it was still a pretty good movie and a fine addition to the Marvel Cinematic Universe. It's a character that could be extremely generic and lame, but it was really well done.

Re:I must be getting old (1)

cpu6502 (1960974) | about a year and a half ago | (#41213605)

Lots of comic fans in the Hugo ballot. The Captain came-in third place.

MY complaint is: Why are there two TV shows winning awards? We have the Doctor Who episode, and then Game of Thrones entire season. I would prefer that GOT be ineligible for the "long form" award so that we have one award for TV, and one award for movies. (I thought that was the original intent of splitting the Dramatic Presentation in the first place.)

Re:I must be getting old (1)

cpu6502 (1960974) | about a year and a half ago | (#41213867)

P.S. Babylon 5 and Lost were not allowed to nominate a whole season, even though both were continuing stories just like Game of Thrones.

Re:I must be getting old (4, Insightful)

TheRaven64 (641858) | about a year and a half ago | (#41211473)

It's the Hugo, not the Nebula. The Nebula award is intended to judge the artistic merit (whatever that means) of a work and is based on the opinions of a selected group of (mostly?) science fiction writers. The Hugo is based on nominations and votes from fans. It just means that a lot of people liked Captain America. Or that it didn't have much competition this year. Given that two of the other three options were 'Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows Part 2' (not as bad as Part 1, but still pretty dire, well into the Hollywood 'but my swimming pool is already filled with money' stage) and Source Code (if it's twice as good as I've heard, I'm still glad I haven't seen it), then there wasn't a great deal of choice. I thought Hugo was superb, but it also didn't get anything like the publicity of the other two, so I wouldn't be surprised if most of the voters hadn't seen it.

Re:I must be getting old (1)

PopeRatzo (965947) | about a year and a half ago | (#41212359)

I'm not sure I understand why Hugo is in the mix. Isn't the Hugo Award for Science Fiction? While I also loved the movie, and have always been a sucker for the Melies story, I didn't see it as science fiction.

Re:I must be getting old (1)

sapphire wyvern (1153271) | about a year and a half ago | (#41219033)

What about the clockwork artist? That seems like a sf element, even if the story overall is mostly focussed on the human aspects.

Re:I must be getting old (1)

tehcyder (746570) | about a year and a half ago | (#41220765)

I'm not sure I understand why Hugo is in the mix. Isn't the Hugo Award for Science Fiction? While I also loved the movie, and have always been a sucker for the Melies story, I didn't see it as science fiction.

I assumed it was some sort of postmodernist joke. Because obviously something called Hugo should get a Hugo award, in the same way that it would be amusing if a film called Oscar, with a director and leading actor called Oscar, won an Oscar.

Re:I must be getting old (1)

julesh (229690) | about a year and a half ago | (#41212459)

The Nebula award [...] is based on the opinions of a selected group of (mostly?) science fiction writers.

Entirely science fiction and/or fantasy writers: judges must be members of SFWA, and previous publication of a work (or multiple short works) of appropriate genre fiction in a professional capacity is a membership requirement of the organisation.

Re:I must be getting old (1)

Anonymous Coward | about a year and a half ago | (#41211989)

Didn't you get the memo? In America, we're supposed to blindly cheer and rave for stuff actually literally based on Nazi war propaganda stories and commissioned / paid for by the US military. Especially if it depicts professional mass-murderers (aka "soldiers") as "heroes", and generally has a feeling of "’MERICA, FUCK YEAH!".

How dare you think for yourself! Off to the Gulag with you!

Many voters don't read all novels (4, Insightful)

blarkon (1712194) | about a year and a half ago | (#41211039)

A lot of voters don't seem to read all the novels - so a substantial number vote for what they've read and they've only read what they already know they will like.

Re:Many voters don't read all novels (4, Funny)

sheepe2004 (1029824) | about a year and a half ago | (#41212125)

A lot of voters don't seem to read all the novels - so a substantial number vote for what they've read and they've only read what they already know they will like.

I was about to mod this as insightful until I realised I hadn't read all the comments and I only have one mod point left.

Curious! (1)

EzInKy (115248) | about a year and a half ago | (#41212485)

You aren't suggesting that people should vote for novels that they haven't read are you? In addition, it seems sort of silly to expect someone to vote something they might not like as their favorite does it not? Am I missing something here?

Re:Many voters don't read all novels (2, Informative)

Anonymous Coward | about a year and a half ago | (#41212537)

Nominees were announced on April 7th
Part of the Voter packet was made available on May 18th
  (it took like a week or two more for the novels to be available, IIRC)
Voting closed July 31st

Voters generally don't have time to read all the content, unless they purchase and read them before the voter packet is released (and then pay twice for them) or have lots of time to read during that two month period between when the packet is made available and voting is closed.

I usually get to all but one of the novels, with the novel I miss being one by an author I've read before, but wasn't fond of.

Re:Many voters don't read all novels (1)

cpu6502 (1960974) | about a year and a half ago | (#41214173)

>>>A lot of voters don't seem to read all the novels - so a substantial number vote for what they've read

This used to be an accurate statement, but it is no more. Everybody who votes gets a free copy of all 5 novels (and novellas and short stories and.....). I'm sure that they, like me, read through all five free books before voting for best novel.

I read a novel in 1-2 days. The shorts are like TV episodes..... about an hour each. Easily done. Oh and also: You can find all the shorts and novellas on the web for free. It's just a matter of searching.

Re:Many voters don't read all novels (1)

doom (14564) | about a year and a half ago | (#41214437)

I'm sure that they, like me, read through all five free books before voting for best novel.

Have con-goers stopped drinking beer? They used to be famous for voting for whoever did con parties with free kegs of beer. But I guess if everyone does that, the advantage is lost.

Re:Many voters don't read all novels (1)

blarkon (1712194) | about a year and a half ago | (#41217583)

A lot of the members I've talked to only read the ones that they were interested in of the packet. I asked about 20 people if they'd read everything - and except for 2 cases the answer was "no". In most cases they'd read 2 or so of the books.

Jo Walton? Dr. Who? (2)

fm6 (162816) | about a year and a half ago | (#41211093)

I don't what I find stranger, that Neil Gaiman actually took the time write a Dr. Who episode (part of a lame ripoff of The Time Traveler's Wife) or that people really think it counts as SF.

I'm wondering how much I care about Jo Walton these days. I started out reading Farthing, which was very good, but turned out to be the first volume in a trilogy that was terrible. She's also written a series about Victorian Dragons, which I feel no inclination at all the read. I'll probably get this new one out of the library, but end up not finishing it.

Re:Jo Walton? Dr. Who? (1)

Anonymous Coward | about a year and a half ago | (#41211151)

The Doctors Wife wasn't part of the River Song arc.

Re:Jo Walton? Dr. Who? (1)

fm6 (162816) | about a year and a half ago | (#41215585)

Sorry, I confused the episode called TDW with the episode featuring TDW.

Re:Jo Walton? Dr. Who? (4, Interesting)

1u3hr (530656) | about a year and a half ago | (#41211357)

I don't what I find stranger, that Neil Gaiman actually took the time write a Dr. Who episode (part of a lame ripoff of The Time Traveler's Wife) or that people really think it counts as SF.

Gaiman is British, and Doctor Who is truly an icon of British SF. Just about every SF fan, and writer, was weaned on it and feels deep affection for it.I've been watching it since 1964 myself. Doctor Who is very soft core SF, but still tries to be SF.

If you held to strict definitions of SF, you'd hardly ever give out any awards for TV or movies. Game of Thrones is pure fantasy, for instance. "Gritty" fantasy, but still has magic, zombies, dragons, etc. I'm just glad it didn't go to a comic book superhero "franchise". Leave that stuff to Comicon.

Re:Jo Walton? Dr. Who? (2)

TheRaven64 (641858) | about a year and a half ago | (#41211499)

If you look at the nominations, three of the five were for Doctor Who episodes. Given the piss-poor writing of the last series (I feel sorry for Matt Smith; you can tell he's a competent actor, but the writers seem to be religiously opposed to giving him anything to work with), The Doctor's Wife was probably the best they could have come up with. Night Terrors was the closest to a traditional Doctor Who episode, but didn't really stand out. Closing Time was just embarrassing. The Rebel Flesh / The Almost People would probably get my vote, but none of them were really worthy of an award. We haven't had anything like The Empty Child, The Girl in the Fireplace, or Blink since Steven Moffat took over, which is quite odd given that he wrote them. It makes me think that Russell T Davis must be a very good script editor...

Re:Jo Walton? Dr. Who? (1)

1u3hr (530656) | about a year and a half ago | (#41211785)

Yeah, but as I said, there are thin pickings for quality SF writing on screen, at the best of times. If "Doctor Who" doesn't deserve a gong, what does? "No award"?

Re:Jo Walton? Dr. Who? (1)

TheLink (130905) | about a year and a half ago | (#41212415)

"No award" when stuff is too crap is actually a good policy.

I'm not saying that nothing is good enough- I haven't really been keeping up with stuff, so I'm not qualified to judge.

Re:Jo Walton? Dr. Who? (1)

cpu6502 (1960974) | about a year and a half ago | (#41213743)

I am surprised how many times "no award" was given. In every instance but one, there were some classic movies that should have won.

Example: The Day the Earth Caught Fire.
Another example: Colossus The Forbin Project
Another: Logan's Run
Another: Twilight Zone 1963 (either the whole thing, or a single episode). It doesn't pay to be picky because when future generations look back and see "no award" they wonder if you were stupid. In all these cases the movies/shows I listed should have won an award.

Re:Jo Walton? Dr. Who? (3, Insightful)

thomst (1640045) | about a year and a half ago | (#41212289)

1u3hr opined:

Gaiman is British, and Doctor Who is truly an icon of British SF. Just about every SF fan, and writer, was weaned on it and feels deep affection for it.I've been watching it since 1964 myself. Doctor Who is very soft core SF, but still tries to be SF.

I remember when the first Doctor Who paperback novel came out (yes, I'm that old). Even though I was only ten years old, the back cover blurb alone was enough to convince me that this was not science fiction - and any discriminating sf fan of the time would have reached the same conclusion.

Flash forward nearly fifty years: last night, the Mrs. and I finished watching the premiere episode of season seven of the Dr. Who reboot with great satisfaction and kudos to Stephen Moffat, who continues to crank out immensely entertaining scripts at a Straczynskian pace. And we're very much looking forward to seeing what he's got up his writerly sleeve over the course of the rest of the season, too.

The difference? Back then, I was a hard-sf purist, who disdained anything that smacked of fantasy dressed up in science fiction clothes. What changed my mind about the Dr. Who reboot (besides my tastes becoming less rigidly defined with the passage of time, I mean) was that, first and foremost, the new Dr. Who is based on good storytelling. The Gaiman-penned The Doctor's Wife episode is a good case in point, but Moffat (who writes most of the episodes, as well as being the showrunner) is a consistently excellent writer, too.

The thing about Dr. Who both then and now is that you just have to accomodate yourself as a viewer/reader to the fact that there's essentially no actual science in this nominally-science-fictional series. Oh, they'll throw in sf buzzwords, but, as for any real science content? Don't get your hopes up. But, as long as you're content to discard any expectation you might have of ACTUAL sf in this so-called "science fiction" show, and content yourself with mere crackin' entertainment, Dr. Who - especially the latest version - can be a mightily pleasurable indulgence.

If you held to strict definitions of SF, you'd hardly ever give out any awards for TV or movies. Game of Thrones is pure fantasy, for instance. "Gritty" fantasy, but still has magic, zombies, dragons, etc. I'm just glad it didn't go to a comic book superhero "franchise". Leave that stuff to Comicon.

The Hugos are awarded based on voting by the fans that attend (or at least pay to support) the WorldCon. Some of 'em are purists, but many are not.

Otherwise, how to account for the presence of so many of Anne McCaffrey's seemingly-endless procession of Pern novels on Hugo finalist ballots over the years?

However, I take issue with the notion that, barring fantasy entries, "you'd hardly ever give out any awards for TV or movies." Over the years, there's been a steady, if admittedly thin, stream of "hard" sf TV series, and a thinner, but still steady stream of movies: Joss Whedon's Firefly and Dollhouse, The Sarah Connor Chronicles, Cattlecar Galaxia, Andromeda, Babylon 5, and the various incarnations of Star Trek all spring immediately to mind in the TV category, and Syfy's current Alphas certainly qualifies, as well (and it has a kickin' theme song, to boot). As for movies, there's been plenty of those, too - far too many to list here - with Bruce Willis's upcoming Loopers being the latest. And there's some really good smaller, indie movies, too (Moon and Timecrimes, for instance).

The good stuff - the pure quill, to quote a Smithism - is out there. Certainly there's been enough of it to make an award every year (although the number of choices in any given year might well be pretty limited), even with the entrants limited to "hard" sf stories. And remember, ever since Judy Merrill coined the term back in the 60's, "sf" has stood for "speculative fiction" - and, in the long run, that's probably all to the good for the relentless expansion of the brand into the mainstream.

Believe me when I say that's something I never expected to happen, back when I picked up Tom Swift Jr. and the Caves of Nuclear Fire at the age of six, and began my lifelong love affair with sf.

Re:Jo Walton? Dr. Who? (1)

tehcyder (746570) | about a year and a half ago | (#41220887)

The thing about Dr. Who both then and now is that you just have to accomodate yourself as a viewer/reader to the fact that there's essentially no actual science in this nominally-science-fictional series. Oh, they'll throw in sf buzzwords, but, as for any real science content? Don't get your hopes up.

Discussions like this always end up becoming a "no true Scotsman" fallacy. There is absolutely nothing to say that you need to have hard science to make something science fiction. A lot of work by Philip K Dick for instance has about the same scientific depth as the Hobbit, but who cares?

Anyway, half the "science" in science fiction is bollicks. Just because you handwave away faster than light travel in a Space Opera by calling it inter-dimensional hyperspatial shifting or casually let people have anti-gravity suits doesn't make it science-y.

The sort of hard science SF novels that go into great detail about building space rockets or whatever are often instructive rather than entertaining. The key word in "science fiction" is the second one. It has been said many times that "speculative fiction" would be a better general description of the genre anyway.

Re:Jo Walton? Dr. Who? (1)

fm6 (162816) | about a year and a half ago | (#41213373)

It tries to be SF. Epic fail.

You seem to be saying that there should be Hugos for crappy SF, pseudo-SF, and non-SF, just so they they can cover all the categories. Well, if you want the awards to be meaningless, I guess that makes sense.

Re:Jo Walton? Dr. Who? (1)

1u3hr (530656) | about a year and a half ago | (#41214799)

You seem to be saying that there should be Hugos for crappy SF, pseudo-SF, and non-SF, just so they they can cover all the categories. Well, if you want the awards to be meaningless, I guess that makes sense.

Don't put words in my mouth. I never said that at all.

I wasn't saying what I wanted or what "should" happen. I was explaining why the programs that won did.

Re:Jo Walton? Dr. Who? (1)

fm6 (162816) | about a year and a half ago | (#41215093)

I'm not putting words in your mouth, I'm trying to understand what you're saying. If you don't want to be misinterpreted, write more clearly.

Re:Jo Walton? Dr. Who? (1)

1u3hr (530656) | about a year and a half ago | (#41220585)

The problem is at your end. You either deliberately or carelessly misinterpreted what I wrote to prop up your soapbox.

Re:Jo Walton? Dr. Who? (2)

Chrisq (894406) | about a year and a half ago | (#41211455)

(part of a lame ripoff of The Time Traveler's Wife)

Really? Let me remind you. "The Doctor's wife" was the Tardis, embodied in idris when the Tardis was captured by "the House". I fail to see any similarity with "The Time Traveller's wife", except for "wife" appearing in the title.

Re:Jo Walton? Dr. Who? (1)

fm6 (162816) | about a year and a half ago | (#41213385)

Sorry, my mistake. The title made me think of the episode where The Doctor marries that that woman from ER.

Re:Jo Walton? Dr. Who? (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year and a half ago | (#41214259)

Sorry, my mistake. The title made me think of the episode where The Doctor marries that that woman from ER.

If you are calling her by "that woman from ER" instead of her name in the series - which she has guest starred in many episodes since David Tenant was The Doctor BTW - AND confusing all those episodes with one of the best episodes since "Blink" then you are obviously not much of a Doctor Who fan...

Re:Jo Walton? Dr. Who? (1)

Chrisq (894406) | about a year and a half ago | (#41216301)

Sorry, my mistake. The title made me think of the episode where The Doctor marries that that woman from ER.

Even that did not have much in common ... no more than either have in common with Slaughterhouse-Five [wikipedia.org] or Time and Time Again [wikipedia.org].

Re:Jo Walton? Dr. Who? (1)

fm6 (162816) | about a year and a half ago | (#41216495)

You see a story where two characters fall in love and experience the same events in reverse order, and you don't see any similarity with The Time Traveler's Wife?

Re:Jo Walton? Dr. Who? (1)

Chrisq (894406) | about a year and a half ago | (#41219981)

read what I said again ... no more so than other stories where people fall in love and live in reverse order.

Re:Jo Walton? Dr. Who? (1)

fm6 (162816) | about a year and a half ago | (#41220211)

Slaughterhouse 5 was a love story? I must have read it wrong.

Anyway, Moffatt said that he "borrowed ideas" from TTTW.

Re:Jo Walton? Dr. Who? (1)

tehcyder (746570) | about a year and a half ago | (#41220903)

You seem convinced that The Time Traveller's Wife is somehow the first and best time travel story. It is neither.

Re:Jo Walton? Dr. Who? (1)

Kittenman (971447) | about a year and a half ago | (#41216047)

(part of a lame ripoff of The Time Traveler's Wife)

Really? Let me remind you. "The Doctor's wife" was the Tardis, embodied in idris when the Tardis was captured by "the House". I fail to see any similarity with "The Time Traveller's wife", except for "wife" appearing in the title.

And "The".

Re:Jo Walton? Dr. Who? (1)

PopeRatzo (965947) | about a year and a half ago | (#41212421)

How do people think Among Others is a better novel than Embassytown? In an off year for new science fiction novels (except Embassytown), it seemed pretty obvious that China Melville's novel, which in my opinion was an homage to the recently-passed Ray Bradbury, deserves every sci-fi award of the year.

2012 will be better. There's already City of Bohane which is terrific, and Paulo Bagiacalupi has a new one and already a clear favorite for Best First Novel in Caliban's War (the Expanse) if you happen to love space opera (I do not).

Jo Walton is competent enough, and Among Others is her best work, but it still felt like I was reading above-average young adult fiction, little more.

Re:Jo Walton? Dr. Who? (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year and a half ago | (#41212591)

I read both and loved both but I didn't think Embassytown was better than Among Others.

Re:Jo Walton? Dr. Who? (1)

Smauler (915644) | about a year and a half ago | (#41213309)

It's China Mieville, not Melville. I originally read it at Melville, too. Have to go pick up Embassytown soon, have read all his others.

Re:Jo Walton? Dr. Who? (1)

Fallingcow (213461) | about a year and a half ago | (#41214937)

Jo Walton is competent enough, and Among Others is her best work, but it still felt like I was reading above-average young adult fiction, little more.

Welcome to the curse of being someone who reads and enjoys science fiction, but doesn't exclusively read sci-fi (or fantasy).

Re:Jo Walton? Dr. Who? (1)

cpu6502 (1960974) | about a year and a half ago | (#41213697)

>>>I don't what I find stranger, that Neil Gaiman actually took the time write a Dr. Who episode or that people really think it counts as SF.

I think you should be modded "troll". Of course Doctor Who counts as SF in the Hugo Award arena. Ditto past television winners like Babylon 5, Star Trek, and Twilight Zone. Where have you been??? (Trivia: Neil Geiman wrote an episode for not just Doctor Who, but also Babylon 5.)

Re:Jo Walton? Dr. Who? (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year and a half ago | (#41217563)

I think you should be modded "troll".

You keep using that word (usually in an "I am not a troll" sense). I don't think it means what you think it means.

Re:Jo Walton? Dr. Who? (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year and a half ago | (#41215059)

THe only one that really matches is The Girl In The Fireplace.

Re:Jo Walton? Dr. Who? (1)

tehcyder (746570) | about a year and a half ago | (#41220787)

a Dr. Who episode (part of a lame ripoff of The Time Traveler's Wife)

I think TTTW was the lame ripoff of Science fiction.

No ePub direct from Tor? (5, Interesting)

trawg (308495) | about a year and a half ago | (#41211129)

I can't figure out the world of e-book publishing. I'm generally happy to buy the Hugo Award winners (and even nominees) figuring that half the work in finding at least some good SF has been done for me, but I can't just go to the publisher's website and buy the fucking book directly from them in an ePub version.

I find this especially weird for Tor given that they seem to understand DRM sucks and they made a big noise about all their ebooks going DRM free [tor.com].

But on their buy page [macmillan.com] (which I found from this article [tor.com] in the Tor blog after doing a Google search for the name) only lets me pick from a bunch of ebook retailers like Amazon, B&N, Google Books... and I know at least some of those won't be available as options for me because I'm here in Australia and not in the USA (Google Books for example is not available to us here).

Further, most of the other options are for specific devices - I happen to have a Kobo, but when I follow the link for that, it takes me to the Kobo search page - either the book is not available there at all, or it's not available for my region. I've tried buying "DRM free" ebooks from Amazon and could not figure out how to do it easily without a Kindle (you don't seem to ever got prompted to download a file; I assume it is all back-end device specific magic tied to your account...?)

In short - I just want to download an ePub file. I know many many users don't want to have to do this, but it is seriously the absolute simplest form of distribution you could come up with - just let me download a .epub file directly in my browser so I can do whatever the hell I want with it!

Re:No ePub direct from Tor? (-1)

Anonymous Coward | about a year and a half ago | (#41211175)

Sadly, the only way of getting without pains a DRM-free epub of many books is to download them from one of the many simple channels that offers them "illegaly". While Amazon and others do a reasonable job of simplifying the process of getting an e-book, it's still DRM'd.

In any case, "Among Others" is NOT SF, but fantasy, and quite good at that.

Re:No ePub direct from Tor? (2)

RabidReindeer (2625839) | about a year and a half ago | (#41211973)

Sadly, the only way of getting without pains a DRM-free epub of many books is to download them from one of the many simple channels that offers them "illegaly". While Amazon and others do a reasonable job of simplifying the process of getting an e-book, it's still DRM'd.

In any case, "Among Others" is NOT SF, but fantasy, and quite good at that.

Buying a book from an ebbok bookseller doesn't have to mean DRM. While Amazon might force it, their competition does not.

A recent TOR ePub in the Barnes & Noble Nook shop carried a very explicit notice that due to the insistence of the publisher, that book did not carry DRM.

Re:No ePub direct from Tor? (1)

Builder (103701) | about a year and a half ago | (#41212753)

And yet in this case, Tor do not have the book available for sale to the OP.

If publishers don't realise that they are pissing people off by refusing to take their money, they're going to have to face the same challenge that the music industry did, instead of learning from their mistakes and offering a solution.

Re:No ePub direct from Tor? (1)

safetyinnumbers (1770570) | about a year and a half ago | (#41213625)

Buying a book from an ebbok bookseller doesn't have to mean DRM. While Amazon might force it, their competition does not.

That was the point - Amazon doesn't enforce it, it displays "this book is DRM-free at the request of the publisher" for some books now. But the poster was complaining that you still can't actually get that book without downloading it to a kindle.

Re:No ePub direct from Tor? (1)

tehcyder (746570) | about a year and a half ago | (#41220929)

In any case, "Among Others" is NOT SF, but fantasy, and quite good at that.

"SF" is just a label to help bookshops file their product and comfort stupid people. A book is either well written or not, nothing else matters.

Re:No ePub direct from Tor? (3, Informative)

julesh (229690) | about a year and a half ago | (#41211315)

But on their buy page [macmillan.com] (which I found from this article [tor.com] in the Tor blog after doing a Google search for the name) only lets me pick from a bunch of ebook retailers like Amazon, B&N, Google Books... and I know at least some of those won't be available as options for me because I'm here in Australia and not in the USA (Google Books for example is not available to us here).

The problem here goes deeper than you think -- Tor don't have the required license to sell Walton's book to you, as they only have the north american and UK distribution rights, AIUI. For you to be able to buy the book, an australian publisher will need to enter into a contract with Walton.

Re:No ePub direct from Tor? (2)

Rogerborg (306625) | about a year and a half ago | (#41211843)

Informative; also bullshit. The idea of regional "distribution" and "publishers" for eBooks, I mean. <Waxes moustache angrily, berates the recent depredations of Malay pirates upon the steam-packet trade to Her Brittanic Majesty's Antipodean Colonies>

Re:No ePub direct from Tor? (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year and a half ago | (#41211949)

Informative; also bullshit. The idea of regional "distribution" and "publishers" for eBooks, I mean. <Waxes moustache angrily, berates the recent depredations of Malay pirates upon the steam-packet trade to Her Brittanic Majesty's Antipodean Colonies>

Gee I wonder why people say FUCK THE AUTHOR, FUCK THE PUBLISH and yaaaarrrrrrr

Re:No ePub direct from Tor? (1)

EzInKy (115248) | about a year and a half ago | (#41212549)

So authors are still content to rely on this outmodded must have a middleman "sucking me dry" concept, are they? If someone wants to read you, what difference does it make where they live? Seriously, is anybody really buying into this "can't drive a horseless carraige without a buggy whip" type of thinking anymore?

Re:No ePub direct from Tor? (1)

cpu6502 (1960974) | about a year and a half ago | (#41213825)

>>>So authors are still content to rely on this outmodded must have a middleman "sucking me dry" concept, are they?

As if a book exists by itself. The authors need the following people:
- an editor to turn their overlong tome into something people will be willing to read
- an artist to create the cover (it's what sells books)
- a publisher to contact the bookstores & stick the book onto shelves.

The alternative is to be like all those self-published authors on amazon.com that have poorly-written stories (needs an editor) filled with numerous typos, generic art covers (often look like porno mags) that only get around ten downloads (no publisher to push the book into B&N or Borders for the big sales).

Re:No ePub direct from Tor? (1)

dargaud (518470) | about a year and a half ago | (#41212561)

I've been wanting to buy an ereader for a long time but was wondering about all the things you just wrote. Kindle doesn't read pdf/ebook and other formats for free files (from Project Gutemberg for instance). Other e-readers can't purchase books that are licenced for the Kindle only. I don't want to read on my phone or a bright tablet with the kindle software. What is the solution ? It shouldn't be that hard !

Re:No ePub direct from Tor? (1)

CrimsonAvenger (580665) | about a year and a half ago | (#41213075)

The keyword you're looking for is "Calibre". It's for ebook library management on your PC, but it can also convert from one ebook format to another...

Re:No ePub direct from Tor? (1)

trawg (308495) | about a year and a half ago | (#41216605)

As someone else points out, Calibre, solves a lot of those problems for you. I use it to convert to ePub from various other formats - it is a great piece of open source software!

I actually do most of my reading on my phone. Some people seem to really struggle long-term reading but me (and my girlfriend) do it for hours with no problems. I can't explain why, but the one tip I would say is when reading at night or in dark environments, make sure you change colours - many book readers (I use FBReader on Android) have a 'night mode', but it is often white text on black background. Change to red text on black background and it is MASSIVELY less stressful on the eyes.

Re:No ePub direct from Tor? (1)

dargaud (518470) | about a year and a half ago | (#41219899)

Yeah, I've used Calibre in the past for other things. But if you can't download Amazon books, then what use is it ? And can it put a pdf/ePub onto a Kindle ? How ? Not having a Kindle, I'm curious.

Re:No ePub direct from Tor? (2)

RDW (41497) | about a year and a half ago | (#41213925)

I've tried buying "DRM free" ebooks from Amazon and could not figure out how to do it easily without a Kindle (you don't seem to ever got prompted to download a file; I assume it is all back-end device specific magic tied to your account...?)

There are desktop applications for Windows and Mac, e.g.:

http://www.amazon.com/gp/kindle/pc/download [amazon.com]

Once this is installed and registered to your Amazon account, any purchased ebook files are automatically downloaded to a directory on your computer when the application is started, or you request a sync. From there (if DRM free) you can convert the files to some other format like epub, using a tool like Calibre:

http://calibre-ebook.com/ [calibre-ebook.com]

Even if the files do have DRM, there are unofficial Calibre plugins to disinfect them seamlessly, as this l33t h4x0r site describes:

http://www.wired.com/gadgetlab/2011/01/how-to-strip-drm-from-kindle-e-books-and-others/ [wired.com]

Congratulations to Ursula Vernon (3, Insightful)

sapphire wyvern (1153271) | about a year and a half ago | (#41211169)

Ursula Vernon well deserves the recognition for Digger.

That reminds me that I should go and buy the print collections. I enjoyed it very much as a free webcomic, and she deserves some money for her efforts.

I'm sure I will enjoy re-reading Digger...

Re:Congratulations to Ursula Vernon (1)

tobiah (308208) | about a year and a half ago | (#41214095)

Digger wasn't that well-known, so that's a bit surprising. But it's very well-written and depicted, and a complete story.

Obama/Romney debate (-1, Offtopic)

silentbluejay (2721217) | about a year and a half ago | (#41211189)

Mitt quickly took the stage with a ferocious six-step that transformed into a full flare which rocked the debate audience, shouting "Oh shit" egging Romney into yet more extreme power moves. But Romney's forehead overbalanced it and Barack quickly took control of the stage, grabbing the mic and delivering a scathing burst of rhetoric about how "bitches ain't nothin' but tricks and hoes."

Under intense pressure to deliver, and still reeling from his misstep earlier, Romney fumbled again when the passed the mic, tripping on some whack shit about "hip-hop and you don't stop" from like fucking 1980. Obama wasted no time grabbin' the mic, talking mad shit about Romney and his crew.

"Yo, Ryan's a little bitch! I think he be a snitch. I leave that nigger dead and stinkin', face down in a ditch", Barack spat to the cries of the cheering crowd.

Romney, unable to fuck with him lyrically, headed up the tables where he began to switch up the beat to some wicked fast dirty south shit, hoping to trip Barack up. But Obama came with it, dropping blistering bombs iller than the quran. "Yo fuck Iraq. Those niggers is white. I gonna take their oil and bitches and get my paper stacked. Yo fuck Iran. And fuck your faggot drama. Bitch, you only building nukes because I fuck yo baby mama"

Then Biden rolled up to the joint on spinners with a fat trunk of North Cackalacka dank.

Re:Obama/Romney debate (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year and a half ago | (#41211347)

http://silentbluejay.tumblr.com

Re:Obama/Romney debate (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year and a half ago | (#41212929)

Every word of the parent's post is true.

Re:Obama/Romney debate (1)

silentbluejay (2721217) | about a year and a half ago | (#41219253)

Of course the water they served at the debate was spiked -- this goes without saying. It was spiked with large amounts of the drug and my urine. Similarly, as they entered the debating auditorium, everyone was misted with a fine spray of mescaline for absorption through the exposed mucus membranes and eyes. However, this is simply not enough to ensure an ideal debating environment as it takes some time for even fatal doses of psychedelic agents to take effect.

I had planned to stall matters for some time by strapping explosives to my chest and running up to the podium to Jihad these infidels all the way to Allah's feet; however, a fortunate occurrence rendered this unnecessary. Prior to the Presidential Debate, a Romney campaign limousine came up the drive-through at the Chik-Fil-A where I am temporarily employed until my DJing career gets off the ground and Mitt Romney himself instructed me via radio to "round him up some viddles."

I wasted no time deep-frying up some feces to adulterate his mondo-sized Dr. Pepper. I then injected his chicken with a fierce payload of LSD, mescaline, and DMT.

With little more than hour before the Presidential Debate, I decided to take my girlfriend to the abortion clinic to celebrate my good fortune. In unbelievable stroke of luck, I noticed President Obama's gold-plated Cadillac Escalade outside bumping the latest 50 Cent chart-topper. It seems his largely fuelled by the unborn and gains the majority of his debating power from unholy sacrifice to Lucifer.

I entered the clinic through the service entrance and rendered the lab technicians temporarily dead with my service pistol. I then rounded up some aborted foetuses and wasted no time injecting them with LSD. President Obama took the paper sack of foetuses and tipped me with the skull of a Cambodian child which I -- to this day -- keep my pencils in.

Incredible, I had been able to dose both candidates so that they would peak just as the debate began.

All of these written works suck. (0, Flamebait)

Anonymous Coward | about a year and a half ago | (#41211835)

The Hugos used to be about recognizing talented authors of speculative fiction. These days, it's apparently an affirmative-action program for females, minorities, and minority females, none of whom could write their way out of a wet paper bag - along with a token white male or two (one of whom can actually write, but the particular story for which he was nominated sucked, too).

Kij Johnson read full online (2)

mattr (78516) | about a year and a half ago | (#41212213)

Among Others was a good book indeed!

I always have so much trouble finding half the books that win these awards.
Here is a copy of Kij Johnson's novella on her website and it is awesome that she is posting it, especially since Asimov's requires you buy their bag to read the conclusion! Congratulations to all.
Full story in .doc format [kijjohnson.com]
Kij Johnson [kijjohnson.com]

And the loser is... (1)

Chelloveck (14643) | about a year and a half ago | (#41213431)

And the loser is ustream.tv, which was streaming the Hugo ceremonies live last night, right up until the best short-form dramatic presentation category. They cut the stream in the middle of Neil Gaiman's acceptance speech because of "violations of terms of service". I'm pretty sure they have a content-scanning bot which threw a hissy fit over the clips of the nominated shows.

At least, I hope it was a bot. I'd much rather imagine a mistake by an automated system than a conscious decision by a human that this particular use of the material was verboten.

I thought the Hugo is a Sci-Fi award. (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year and a half ago | (#41216001)

This sounds like Fantasy to me. Magic and such. I haven't seen a lot of room for magic in science.

"Startling, unusual, and yet irresistably readable, Among Others is at once the compelling story of a young woman struggling to escape a troubled childhood, a brilliant diary of first encounters with the great novels of modern fantasy and SF, and a spellbinding tale of escape from ancient enchantment.

Raised by a half-mad mother who dabbled in magic, Morwenna Phelps found refuge in two worlds. As a child growing up in Wales, she played among the spirits who made their homes in industrial ruins. But her mind found freedom and promise in the science fiction novels that were her closest companions. Then her mother tried to bend the spirits to dark ends, and Mori was forced to confront her in a magical battle that left her crippled--and her twin sister dead"

Re:I thought the Hugo is a Sci-Fi award. (1)

91degrees (207121) | about a year and a half ago | (#41216251)

It's for speculative fiction. This makes the criteria pretty loose.

The City and the City won on year and you could argue that that's neither.

Re:I thought the Hugo is a Sci-Fi award. (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year and a half ago | (#41216435)

Meh. Fantasy bores me. Is there an award for hard sci-fi? Ie, guys like Stephen Baxter that actually know some science and care about the details? That would be a good filter for me.... it appears that the Hugo is kind of useless for my purposes.

Re:I thought the Hugo is a Sci-Fi award. (1)

91degrees (207121) | about a year and a half ago | (#41216799)

You know, I don't think there is. At least not one that anyone considers important.

Best compilation of science fiction I've found (1)

robateastridge (50501) | about a year and a half ago | (#41216317)

If you like sci-fi and have trouble finding material to read, look for Gardner Dozois' collections on Amazon. He's been doing them for years and I've bought all that I can find. I just finished reading “The Man Who Bridged the Mist” and I'm glad it won; great story.

Re:Best compilation of science fiction I've found (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year and a half ago | (#41216527)

It looks like those are all short stories. Can anyone recommend some good novel length hard sci-fi from the past 10 years? books or authors....

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