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Gaiman's American Gods Wins Hugo

Hemos posted more than 12 years ago | from the winning-the-prizes dept.

News 194

H.I. McDonnough writes "Neil Gaiman won this year's Hugo for his novel American Gods. A much better choice than last year. " If you are a curious, check out the review I did on it.

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fist post! (-1, Offtopic)

Anonymous Coward | more than 12 years ago | (#4183778)

fist it fist it first time!!!

Re:fist post! (0, Offtopic)

Silicone (569267) | more than 12 years ago | (#4183828)

But it says squat...

Narrow-minded bigots (1, Offtopic)

bourne (539955) | more than 12 years ago | (#4183785)

A much better choice than last year.

Would you like some cheese with your whine?

It amazes me how narrow-minded scifis are about what is pure and what is not.

Re:Narrow-minded bigots (5, Insightful)

mikeplokta (223052) | more than 12 years ago | (#4183800)

Would you like some cheese with your whine?


It amazes me how narrow-minded scifis are about what is pure and what is not.


American Gods is no closer to being "pure" science fiction (whatever that may be) than last year's winner, Harry Potter and the Goblet of Fire. So it's possible that he just thinks it's a better book, and isn't pursuing some purist political agenda.

Re:Narrow-minded bigots (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 12 years ago | (#4184480)

Though they are both fantasy, and given that the Hugo is a fantasy/SF award, they're both eligible. I'd say this was a whine by the story submitter.

Re:Narrow-minded bigots (-1, Troll)

Anonymous Coward | more than 12 years ago | (#4183837)

What always gives me a chuckle is when some politically correct hack tries to write about Negroes in outer space. What a stretch! Negroes in the cotton patch maybe. In outer space? Never. Hell, I'd like to even meet a Negro who has contributed anything significant to free software. That would be one for Ripley's Believe It or Not !!

Re:Narrow-minded bigots (0, Troll)

Chanc_Gorkon (94133) | more than 12 years ago | (#4183857)

Sci Fi is NOT fantasy. Fantasy is stuff that will never happen or if it does we are in deep crap. Fantasy is or can be considered withcraft. I have a problem with that. I am a Christian and when you see people doing things that are god like it's considered blasphemy. Although Jedi can be considered witch like, you don't see the things like lightning bolts shooting from their hands and the like unless they are evil (usually). Not preaching or anything, but some people have a problem with Fantasy being called Sci Fi. Sci fi usually involves science. Fantasy usually doesn't. I agree with Hemos opinion. While I have not, and will not read Harry Potter books due to the witchcraft connotations, I agree that it does not deserve a Hugo. Harry Potter is a true fad and nothing that will ever last near as long as Star Trek or Star Wars. I mean here we are nearly a year since the film has ben out and do you hear anything in any media (mass media or other forms) about Harry Potter? Nope. Some may say that it's because a new book has not been written or something to that effect. But I think the fad's about over. I am aware of the bnlip about the false Rowling book being found in asia, but other then that nada. IT'S A FAD! Just like Britney Spears. Now I'll have to check out that book.

Re:Narrow-minded bigots (5, Insightful)

iapetus (24050) | more than 12 years ago | (#4183917)

Apt thread title. :)

Any sufficiently advanced technology is indistinguishable from magic - according to Arthur C Clarke, anyway. The line dividing science fiction and fantasy is a *lot* narrower than some purists would like us to believe - while there are plenty of sci-fi books/shows in which the science is an integral part of the story, there are just as many where it really is indistinguishable from magic, and where you could substitute the rayguns and spacecraft with wands of lightning and flying ships without really affecting the story.

You've mentioned one example yourself, which you're trying to excuse just because it falls under the 'sci-fi' banner - Jedi have mystical powers. So why on earth is it fine when Luke summons his lightsaber to his hand, but evil when Harry Potter summons his broomstick to his? Jedi even experience a life-beyond-death that is firmly set outside the Christian world view - but that's okay because it's science fiction?

And frankly it's sheer arrogance to say that you haven't read a book and then try to make value judgements on it. You refuse to read Harry Potter books because they're fantasy? Fine, your loss. But don't go telling me whether they deserve a Hugo award, because you don't know.

Oh, and don't check out American Gods. It's full of terribly un-Christian things - gods from a variety of pantheons, magic, that sort of thing. I'm sure you'll be able to tell us how good it was without reading a single page anyway.

And while you're at it, you'd better steer clear of C S Lewis and his Narnia books, because fantasy is bad, right? Don't let the fact that he's probably one of the most convincing Christian authors of modern times get in your way.

Re:Narrow-minded bigots (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 12 years ago | (#4183923)

I can assure you as a Witch, we don't shoot lightning bolts from our hands. And I don't know any evil witches, ony a few Satansist (who I loathe) and who are part of the Christian religion (Satan being from your mythology, not ours, if you will). But it is amusing to view the stereotypes some people have here when it come to religion, even if we all agree on guns and freedom issues in other respects.

Re:Narrow-minded bigots (2)

skroz (7870) | more than 12 years ago | (#4184004)

I'm personally amused by those who are so deeply entrenched in their religions (I hesitate to call them zealots, but let's call a spade a garden tool, here,) that they can bring themselves to a near boil over books like American Gods and Harry Potter. Try explaining Wicca, Satanism, or hell JUDAISM to these people some time... it's hilarious. They're so entrenched in their religious dogma that they refuse to even HEAR the other side.

It's like trying to convince a hard SF fan to read Harry Potter... or a Linux user to load MS Windows. Hmmm... maybe zealot is perfect.

Re:Narrow-minded bigots (5, Interesting)

skroz (7870) | more than 12 years ago | (#4183933)

Some definitions by the masters

Ben Bova :

"1. Science fiction stories are those in which some aspect of future science or technology is so integral to the stroy that, if you take away the science or technology, the story collapses...
2. Science fiction writers are free to extrapolate from today's knowledge and to invent anything they can imagine -- so long as no one can prove that what they have 'invented' is wrong."

Isaac Asimov :
"In my view, the best science fiction, the only valid science fiction and the science fiction I try to write depends on legitimate science rationally extrapolated. If something is wrong, distored and illogical, it cannot be categorized as science fiction, any more than noise can be called music or a used paint rag a painting."

So by these definitions, Harry Potter ain't SF. Then again, neither is American Gods.

Re:Narrow-minded bigots (3, Interesting)

skroz (7870) | more than 12 years ago | (#4183954)

One interesting side effect of these definitions... what happens to Sci Fi if the science is disproven at a later date? Is "The Time Machine" still science fiction? What about much of Clark and Asimov's work that has been disproven by later scientific developments? Hell, what about 90% of what David "I don't know how to end a book" Brin writes?

Re:Narrow-minded bigots (1)

PaleBoy (564594) | more than 12 years ago | (#4184000)

Skroz has it completely right. I used to work in a bookstore, and to keep it simple, we used to differentiate using the terms hard and soft SF, hard being things that fit into the Ben Bova definition, like Orson Scott Card or (my personal favorite) Stanislaw Lem, and then the soft was the majority of the Star Wars books, and the like. I thought of it as "space fantasy". Not that that's bad in any way, there is some great space fantasy.

American Gods is pretty soft, although it does kind of submit at least a rational system in which gods could exist on our planet, with mindshare as their ultimate power gauge, etc. And it was an excellent book, which certainly softens the blow from the fact that it is not "hard" SF. The Harry Potter vote seemed like a sellout to me and a lot of other folks (at the store I worked at, our SF Shelver stomped around the store, clutching his press release and swearing profusely).

Re:Narrow-minded bigots (3, Interesting)

Roblimo (357) | more than 12 years ago | (#4184083)

And yet... Robert Heinlein's old novella, "Magic Inc." was fantasy in the sense that it was based on the postulate that magic worked and was part of everyday business life, but could also be considered "alternate timeline" science fiction, because other than magic working, the story was about American small-town "main street" business and politics as they existed when the story was written.

"What if?" is the basic question asked by most of the science fiction I enjoy. What it is asked about can be almost anything: "What if dragons not only existed, but could become partners with selected humans?" is an example, as is "What if we had faster than light travel and met up with an interesting alien civilization?"

- Robin

in the eye of the author (2)

jbennetto (41159) | more than 12 years ago | (#4184296)

The best way to characterize the genre is from the intention of the writer. If the writer is trying to write science fiction, it's SF (admittedly sometimes bad and illogical). It's not a precise rule; you can't just count up the how many times the author uses (telepathy | time travel | FTL travel | mythical creatures | inherited memory | returning from the dead | ... ) and when it hits a magic number throw up your hands and say "That's it! This is fantasy!".

Should we be snobs and disdain fantasy? Of course not. I would consider "Perdido Street Station" the most intellectual of the nominees, and it's clearly not SF (Mieville calls it "weird fiction"). But it's a useful distinction even if it can be difficult to make. Should we throw away the specualtive-fiction super-genre entirely simply becuase Vonnegut and Crighton are difficult to place? (by my rule, of course, neither are SF)

As for the Asimov quote, he's haldly pure. The premise of humans originating from aliens (the Pak, in his Known Space books) is about as "illogical" as can be. But he's trying to write SF, and so that's what it is.

Re:in the eye of the author (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 12 years ago | (#4184326)

Asimov is not Niven, unless there's something we haven't been told.

Re:in the eye of the author (2)

jbennetto (41159) | more than 12 years ago | (#4184473)

Didn't you know it was a pen name? :)

Darned brain fog. Um...ok...hmmm...well, I think I can safely accuse of "Fondation and Earth" of being illogical, though in much more than just science (no doubt a case of an author trying to write a book in one sitting). And I'd be happy to poke holes in "Nemisis."

Ok, I'm going to stop now.

Re:in the eye of the author (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 12 years ago | (#4184491)

So if I'm trying to write a cook book, but never get around to putting recipies in it, is it still a cook book?

Re:Narrow-minded bigots (1)

Roxton (73137) | more than 12 years ago | (#4184518)

In my mind, Asimov is closer to the truth. For me, the sole requirement of the Science Fiction genre is that it add a new, rationally self-consistent element to the universe, and hinge the plot around the resultant implications.

Take magic and demons. A lot of stories will just conjure plot elements of a mystical nature, using it as a backdrop or tools for the plot. That's just fantasy.

But a fantastic example of non-techie science fiction is the works of Zelazny. In his works, the plot hinges on mystical elements added to the universe. In the Incarnations of Immortality series, for example, the books hinge on the implications of the idea that the vital, metaphysical functions of the universe are tended by a set of demi-human avatars. /Lord Demon/ was based off of the conflict generated by a race of demons being cut off from the Chi required to maintain the strength of their progeny.

On the other hand, Star Wars is just a plot that takes its flavor from the futuristic (or rather, advanced-ancient) theme. Regardless of the props, it's pure fantasy.

This is as opposed to something like Greg Egan's Diaspora, which is a novel that has its entire plot written as kind of an exploratory analysis of the implications of reproducable "human" consciousnesses being contained in a truly autonomous and arbitrary metaverse which is capable of roaming the physical galaxy. (I highly recommend this title.)

For me, this is the most direct and unmuddled way of thinking of the distinction science fiction and fantasy.

-=Roxton

Re:Narrow-minded bigots (1)

eean (177028) | more than 12 years ago | (#4184035)

First off, Harry Potter is not just a fad. People will continue to read Harry Potter for decades. Its place in pop culture will fade certainly when Rowling moves on to other things or perhaps before then, but just because somethings in pop culture doesn't make it a fad. Whatever happens, Harry Potter will continue to be popular for a book.

And just you watch come late 2002, early 2003 when Harry Potter 5 comes out. Then you will hear about it in the media. Unlike Britney Spears, Harry Potter is a book so there isn't much news except when something comes out. Harry Potter does not flick off reporters, skip concerts or strip off its clothes.

Do you believe in witchcraft? Kind of sounds like you do. I mean "witchcraft connotations"? The word 'witchcraft' is used in the book ('Hogwarts School of Witchcraft and Wizardry' I believe). How is it a connotation? A connotation to the real deal? I think its sorta funny the people you hear speaking out againist Harry Potter are those who actually believe in that stuff to some extent, though I guess it makes sense.

I agree though that Harry Potter is not Sci Fi, and probably shouldn't have gotten the Hugo award. I was actually planning on modding up your comment until I read the rest of it.

Re:Narrow-minded bigots (2)

Chanc_Gorkon (94133) | more than 12 years ago | (#4184423)

If Harry Potter is still being mentioned every once in a while in 20 years....then I will say it's not a fad. Personally, I don't think it will have the holding power that Star Wars or Star Trek has had. Sure peoole may be reading it for decades just as people watch the same crap movies time after time on TV. But I don't think that their will be a Harry Potter in Witchcraft College book stating the tales an tribulations of Harry as he enters his 20's.

Re:Narrow-minded bigots (3, Insightful)

Planesdragon (210349) | more than 12 years ago | (#4184036)

Sci Fi is NOT fantasy.

Actually, in a very roundabout way, it is.

The line between what is "science fiction" and what is "fantasy" is often a moot point. They're both books about worlds that are not and probably never will be, and have (almost) identical target audiences. It used to be that they were just one catagory, but then fantasy broke off on its own--although they still carry the same stigmas, and they still are stocked in the same sections in some stores.

As for the so-called witchcraft in Harry Potter... there's no more real withcraft in there than there was in Star Wars or anything C.S. Lewis ever wrote. In fact, there's more anit-Christian moments in American Gods.

You should give Harry Potter a chance. It's a fun book, with more than a few christian or nearly-christian themes, even if God is a bit absent. But if you refuse to give "Harry Potter" a chance because of its "witchcraft" themes, can you at least be consistent and stay away from Star Wars, Star Trek, American Gods, Babylon 5, everything Asimov wrote, and just about all the other avenues of Science Fiction ever written? They ALL have rather blatant anti-Christian messages, and are filled with blasphemy, aside from a very small minority.

As for Harry Potter being a fad... there's still two or three books in the pipe, as well as another movie coming out next year. You don't see anything in the media about Harry Potter now because (1) it's not longer news and (2) the next movie/book isn't out for awhile, so advertising would be moot.

(Oh, and on a side note, I'm rather certain that seeing the future, preaching, guided-action, levitation, and telekinesis are all historically "witchraft" activiites, while shootling lightning bolts from one's hands didn't get there until D&D and its contemporaries entered print.)

Re:Narrow-minded bigots (1)

jargonCCNA (531779) | more than 12 years ago | (#4184258)

You should give Harry Potter a chance. It's a fun book, with more than a few christian or nearly-christian themes, even if God is a bit absent. But if you refuse to give "Harry Potter" a chance because of its "witchcraft" themes, can you at least be consistent and stay away from Star Wars, Star Trek, American Gods, Babylon 5, everything Asimov wrote, and just about all the other avenues of Science Fiction ever written? They ALL have rather blatant anti-Christian messages, and are filled with blasphemy, aside from a very small minority.

I'm confused here. Mind explaining those "anti-Christian" messages held with Star Wars and Star Trek? Last time I checked, Star Trek was just a massive metaphor for today's world.

Re:Narrow-minded bigots (1, Flamebait)

Chanc_Gorkon (94133) | more than 12 years ago | (#4184393)

You should give Harry Potter a chance. It's a fun book, with more than a few christian or nearly-christian themes, even if God is a bit absent. But if you refuse to give "Harry Potter" a chance because of its "witchcraft" themes, can you at least be consistent and stay away from Star Wars, Star Trek, American Gods, Babylon 5, everything Asimov wrote, and just about all the other avenues of Science Fiction ever written? They ALL have rather blatant anti-Christian messages, and are filled with blasphemy, aside from a very small minority.

Star Trek anti Christian? I doubt that very much. First off, my pastor loves Star Trek and see's nothing anti christian in it at all. You don't see sex portrayed much in Star Trek and I hope they never go down that line. While I will agree that Star Wars had some witchcraft connotations they are just that....connotations. And with the release of The Phantom Menace and other prequels we find out that Jedi's aren't as mistifying as they seem. There's a scientific reason they can do the things they do....even if it's made up (midichlorians).

Harry Potter is blantant. It comes right out and screams we are witches and worlocks. To me ANY form of that is evil. There's no such thing as a good witch. Now I am not going to go on a witch hunt because the ones who say they are are being fooled by satan.

Most folks into goth and Marilyn Manson have no idea what they are getting into. It is satan worshiping and nothing less. Some say Marilyn Manson is putting on a show and on that note I say your right. But it does not mean he's not committing sins while he's doing that.

Probably the hardest things for non-christians to grasp is how can so and so be a christian and do the things that they do? They can because we are sinners and that's why we needed Jesus to die for our sins. I am not saying they should continue down that path. They should not. We are humans and are of a sinful nature. We are bound to make mistakes. What's bad is when we continue to sin. Then we continue down the path of the Dark Side (or the path to hell...if you don't like a comparison). One of the most interesting books I have read was a comparison of the Jedi to Christians. It was a really compelling book albiet small.

I am not closed minded. I believe that there's one god and there's noone more powerful then him. I cannot accept that there are any more gods than the only god I know.

Telekenesis is not really an indication of god either. You think god is going to come down and make thing levitate to prove he's god? That's laughable in this day and age.

Also, I find it funny that I get marked a troll because I am doing what most people won't. Stating their beliefs in a open forum. Isn't that what we preach or say we should do hear on Slashdot? I can see past dogma. Dogma is nothing more then legalism and it's not what is preached at my church. In my church we can show up in shorts, t-shirts and even jeas or dressed in the finest finery if we'd like. There's no "Dress Code". To some "christians", my church could be considered a group of blasphemers because several of our songs sound like rock and roll never mind that they are praises to god! We believe there's one god. We believe everything we have is there because of him. We believe what is written in the bible, our only mandatory reading. There's no hymnals in our church. There's no catechism classes except bible study. We don't have volume after volume of things that should and should not be done/said/worn in church (like the catholics do). We pray and sing praises to god in anyway we see fit. We don't kneel at certain times in church and we don't say that everyone must stand during praise and worship. We also usually don't try to judge although it is human nature to do this. I don't usually like to get into these things on Slashdot because the sheep that read Slashdot will dock me because I am doing what they claim they support. Stating my opinion and free thoughts. I am not trying to convert Slashdot or cram it down your throat although if someone goes to church because of what I said, praise god! I am just stating that Sci Fi is one thing, fantasy is another. By fantasy I mean dragons, witches and that sort of thing not the fantasy or made up item of faster than light travel. Their should be a clear line between and I usually see a clear line but can agree that often there isn't one. That's just all a part of the fight between good and evil. Not always is it clear to the reader what is what. I am not condeming you if you read Harry Potter. I am saying I will not read it because it's counter to all of my belief system. If that's closed minded, well, so be it. At least I have the guts to try to stick to my beliefs rather then roll over and submit to satan's whims like most folks do.

Re:Narrow-minded bigots (1)

Fred_A (10934) | more than 12 years ago | (#4184346)

This has to be one of the absolute weirdest reasonning I've ever seen...

whitchcraft, blasphemy ? Hello ? 11th century here we come...

Re:Narrow-minded bigots (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 12 years ago | (#4183859)

She is not a very good author on technical aspects. Not bad, I just wouldn't say she has "mastered the English language." If this was "The Royal Tenenbaums" I would says she is not a genius.

A new business-model? (-1)

Anonymous Coward | more than 12 years ago | (#4183797)

1: Write free software.
2: ?
3: Win the Hugo price.
4: Profit!

Re:A new business-model? (-1, Offtopic)

Anonymous Coward | more than 12 years ago | (#4183824)

Aren't we done with this yet?

Links (karma whore) (-1, Redundant)

Taylor_Durden (605279) | more than 12 years ago | (#4183798)

Author's website [neilgaiman.com]
Signed edition available [safeshopper.com]
Article on CNN about marketing the book [cnn.com]
buy at Amazon [amazon.com]
Buy at B+N [barnesandnoble.com]
Review on Salon [salon.com]
Excerpt available [readersread.com]

Re:Links (karma whore) (1)

ChiPHeaD23 (147491) | more than 12 years ago | (#4184058)

Is it just me or is the Amazon link a referral?

Whore indeed :P

Always one of my favorite books. (0, Redundant)

Slashdotess (605550) | more than 12 years ago | (#4183808)

I recommend everyone read this, it's a great book.

In honor of Hugo Gernsback (2, Informative)

Anonymous Coward | more than 12 years ago | (#4183812)

I remember Hugo, grew up reading his pulp magazines. Here's an article [todaysengineer.org] about him. One of my favorite magazines was Hugo's magazine Radio Electronics. Not only was Hugo a brilliant science fiction promoter, but he was also a brilliant electrical engineer involved in the development of many of the gizmos which we now take for granted.

Re:In honor of Hugo Gernsback (4, Interesting)

jamie (78724) | more than 12 years ago | (#4183855)

I found a copy of one of his influential stories online.

Ralph 124C 41+, chapter 1 [twd.net]
chapter 2 [twd.net]
chapter 3 [twd.net]

WARNING GOATSE.CX LINK IN MY SIG !!! (-1)

Adolf Hitroll (562418) | more than 12 years ago | (#4183875)

The last link is in no way related to this guy, isn't it some hidden pudlibcity for your website, instead ?
you oughta learn to put a separator before your .sig !

Ecstasy not dangerous, say scientists (-1, Offtopic)

Anonymous Coward | more than 12 years ago | (#4183826)

Three leading psychologists have provoked an outcry by claiming that the dance drug ecstasy may not be dangerous and that some of its ill-effects may be imaginary.

The drug has been blamed for causing deaths and permanent brain damage, but the psychologists are strongly critical of animal and human studies into its effects, claiming that they are misleading and overestimate the harm ecstasy - scientifically known as MDMA - can cause.

Read More... [guardian.co.uk]

Re:Ecstasy not dangerous, say scientists (-1, Offtopic)

Anonymous Coward | more than 12 years ago | (#4183898)

Just take Prozac with your MDMA, it prevents the re-uptake of MDMA as seratonin. Its not hard to find the shit. Prozac I mean.

But even better just meditate for 2 hrs. a day. You will get eveything the MDMA gives you and more.

Drugs are the the path of the weak minded. You must be a Bene Geserit Human before you take the water of life. What do you expect horny 16 year old's to do with emotional enlightenmnet in a pill?

Re:Ecstasy not dangerous, say scientists (-1, Offtopic)

dTaylorSingletary (448723) | more than 12 years ago | (#4183979)


Speaking universal truths can be the path of the weak minded. No truth is universal, including the truth that no truth is universal. Mileage will vary, and you my friend might be wrong.

Iain M. Banks. (1)

F34nor (321515) | more than 12 years ago | (#4183842)

Any of the Culture books by Banks are ripe for this award. I think Potter's a bathtub read not a Hugo but that's OK. I heard a NPR bit which ripped the Author a new waste disposal unit, he pointed out that she used teh term "stretched thier legs" like 5 times and that it was just poor quality writing.

I have to say the Vernor Vinge books are wonderful and if you haven'r read them you are in for a treat.

F34nor

Re:Iain M. Banks. (1)

CountBrass (590228) | more than 12 years ago | (#4183856)

I agree. Iain M Banks (as opposed to Ian Banks which is the same guy writing straight fiction) is worth a read. I personally much prefer the Culture based novels - but that's the majority of his sci-fi so not difficult to find.

Re:Iain M. Banks. (0, Flamebait)

F34nor (321515) | more than 12 years ago | (#4183882)

When the FUCK do I get my 28 extra glands?

This is why I am planning on spending 28 days in total darkness. http://www.universal-tao.com/dark_room/DarkRoom.pd f If I can't buy drugs in this (snicker) FREE COUNTRY. I' get my brain to make them myslef.

Darkness and DMT (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 12 years ago | (#4183931)

www.universal-tao.com/dark_room/DarkRoom.pdf

The guy who runs this site is a western MD and the only student of "White Cloud" the last Taoist internal Alchemest Monk to escpae communist China. He took Chia as his only student. Cool shit. White Cloud was supposed to me a serious badass, came from the same school that they are talking about in Crouching Tiger Hidden Dragon. Mystical Taoist Kung Fu.

http://www.globalserve.net/~sarlo/RatingsM.htm#m an tak

Doesn't get that good a rating though...

Re:Iain M. Banks. (1)

F34nor (321515) | more than 12 years ago | (#4183995)

Not that the Bridge isn't SciFi. I can see why he published it under Iain Banks. But Powell's puts it in the Gold Room and that means its SciFi to me.

Re:Iain M. Banks. (1)

NeuroUk (594740) | more than 12 years ago | (#4183869)

Seconded - its a pity that he won't eaver get a booker (big Uk book award) for one of his SF novels.

Just a few alternatives: (-1, Offtopic)

Mulletproof (513805) | more than 12 years ago | (#4183844)

Why is Slashdot posting tripe like Buffy's New Season [slashdot.org] when it could be posting real news... Such as:

2002-09-02 05:11:18 LotR: The Two Towers hits net months before release (articles,movies) (rejected)
In what has to be one of the startling security breaches in Hollywood to date, Lord of the Rings: The Two Towers [lordoftherings.net] has hit the net FOUR MONTHS ahead of it's intended release in theaters [drudgereport.com] according to the Drudge Report [drudgereport.com] , though there is still some question of what was actually obtained and how. If this can be confirmed or denied, it's here on Slashdot.

Or...

2002-09-02 05:20:54 RIAA site hit yet again by disgruntled hackers (articles,music) (rejected)
The RIAA has been hit for a third time in a one month's span as file-sharing fans hacked the RIAA hompage and altered it's content over the holiday weekend. Previous attacks include a DoS assault and a similar alteration. The story and alterations can be found at the MP3 Newswire [mp3newswire.net] .

Sure, I'm a tiny bit chapped, but the main portion of my fustration has been replaced with the need to prove how big of hacks and chumps these editors are. Even that -1 I'll be getting doesn't make any difference. I'll tell you when my karma dips below Excellent, kay?

Re:Just a few alternatives: (0, Offtopic)

sielwolf (246764) | more than 12 years ago | (#4183860)

Why is Slashdot posting tripe like Buffy's New Season [slashdot.org] when it could be posting real news


Easy! Because /. isn't a news site. It is a gossip forum for nerds with the topics carefully selected by the Queen Bees... er, editors. Topics are "carefully screened" as to what is "important" (Buffy) and what isn't (RIAA getting hacked). But then you could just read CNN all day.

Slashot: Rumors for Nerds, Stuff that Only Matters in our Little Social Circle.

pay offs (-1, Offtopic)

Anonymous Coward | more than 12 years ago | (#4183873)

I've had the kylix 3 release story rejected and quite a few (evil) apple ones, noticed how many Apple stories there have been latly?

It would be nice if a few hubs started blocking RIAA, and gnutella blocked all IP's in the RIAA's/MPAA's block and any block found to be 'hacking'

Re:Just a few alternatives: (-1, Offtopic)

Spleener12 (587422) | more than 12 years ago | (#4183897)

Erm... As far as that first one goes, you might wanna click here. [slashdot.org]

And not to be rude, but if you seem to hate /. so much, why do you even bother going here, let alone posting here? Do you just get a kick out of bitching about stuff like this?

Kicks? No. (2)

Mulletproof (513805) | more than 12 years ago | (#4183939)

No. No kicks here. Just this is a site that actually wants people to subscribe to it but can't even run a semi-professional operation. It severely irks me. Yep, I saw the post on the Two Towers. Maybe i keep posting to think one day the system will actually work. Naive, I guess. But you're right. I'm about done here. I'm tired of reading about buffy, the Dance Dance Revolution and 2 year old rants on U571 as well as the massive biased against anything not open source. The site it busted and ran by ametures. But thanks for asking.

Unlike most posting here, I've actually read it. (2, Informative)

CountBrass (590228) | more than 12 years ago | (#4183847)

What surprised me was how much the book felt like Gaiman's comic books, Sandman in particular. I certainly enjoyed reading it and would reccomend it, but, and this is a big but, was it worthy of the Hugo ? Well I'm kind of surprised to discover that apparently it was. Yes it was good, entertaining even thought provoking in a minor way and nice twist at the end. But then I suppose that's more than you can say for most sci-fi which is lucky to achieve one of those. Anyway, if you haven't already read it, you should.

Re:Unlike most posting here, I've actually read it (1)

grumpygrodyguy (603716) | more than 12 years ago | (#4184455)

Lot's of times this happens...I really think the award was giving out of respect for the Sandman series.

Nobody says it of course, but I'm sure that everyone in that panel had thier respect for Gaiman won be reading Sandman.

Lots of people are very gaurded about the chategorization of thier genre fiction...comic books, graphic novel, sci fi, fantasy...like most geniuses Gaiman took one genre and blended it with a few others.

It's hard to characterize(I.E. pigeonhole) work like that....so they sneak him in edgewise by giving him an award about a book he wrote.

They are paying him respect as an artist. Respect he amply deserves.

Having read most of the nominated books (2)

mocm (141920) | more than 12 years ago | (#4183854)

I must say that Gaiman's book was fun to read, although I wouldn't call it Sci Fi. In that catagory
I would have picked the Chronoliths, just ahead of Cosmonaut's Keep.

Speculative Fiction (3)

CaseyB (1105) | more than 12 years ago | (#4184201)

The separation between Sci-Fi, fantasy, alternate history, horror, etc. is terribly blurred. There are many, like McAffery's Pern books, that are essentially fantasy, but take time to rationalize it with science. On the other side are far-future Sci-Fi books with technology so far beyond today's that there is no attempt even to explain it, hence rendering it Clarke-style "sufficiently advanced", and magical.

I've come to like the collective term "speculative fiction". It nicely describes the whole range.

Excellent Giaman Goodness (2)

EXTomar (78739) | more than 12 years ago | (#4183867)

There are two things I really appreciated about American Gods.

- The old god's interaction with the current world
- The mythos of the new "gods" of America

I also find it interesting that some of the elder gods fall victim to the allure of "The American Dream(tm)". The promise of prosperity didn't apply to them when their followers came over here and now they are bitter. The want a piece of the pie too.

Re:Excellent Gaiman Goodness (1)

ideonode (163753) | more than 12 years ago | (#4184043)

The old gods' interaction with the current world

I've always thought that the fundamental conceit in American Gods, as you state above, was one that was appropriated from Douglas Adams in The Long Dark Teatime of the Soul. I don't have the exact quote to hand, but it was something like 'The Gods still continued to exist long after the people stopped believing in them'.

I think that Gaiman took this good idea, half-developed it in Good Omens, and then fully fleshed it in the current Hugo winner.

Does American Gods deserve to be a Hugo winner? Did Harry Potter? They deserved it as much as Cryponomicon deserved to be nominated in 2000.

Re:Excellent Giaman Goodness (1)

F34nor (321515) | more than 12 years ago | (#4184066)

Haven't read it so...

Isn't the new gods of America what Neil Stevenson has been hammering away on in Snow Crash, Diamond Age and Cryptonomicon? The whole Athena/Coyote thing. God gives man tech. Tech makes man weaker and more dependant on tech. e.g. Instead of building Menumonics to memorize things like Homer (the poet) you just abdicate your mental powers to a computer to remember for you. The total density of information may be higher in some respects in the computer but it is still a mental crutch.

Coyote is THE American God. He makes you think you're free by giving you Linux, PDA's and Internet Porn but he's the trickster god, so in reality it all just makes you into a fat pasty nerd who's easier to eat. Kill your computer be a Mentat or a Navagator not a technican for some god of obfuscation.

Just goes to show that we do need the Butlerian Jihad. "Thou shat not make a machine in the image of a human mind."

Re:Excellent Giaman Goodness (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 12 years ago | (#4184270)

I remember a short story from Frederic Brown in "Paradox Lost" which seems to follow a similar theme than "American Gods", old gods vs anew merican myths. As I only have the book in the spanish version I don't know the original story name, "El nuevo", may be it was "The New One".

In any case I haven't read "American Gods".

Opinions (1)

christurkel (520220) | more than 12 years ago | (#4183871)

Whether you thought American Gods was better than Goblet of Fire is irrelevant. They are are both fine books in their own right. But the important thing to remember is that they are written in very different styles and have much different target audiences.

Audio Format (4, Informative)

RWarrior(fobw) (448405) | more than 12 years ago | (#4183877)

American Gods is also available on audio cassette from Harper Audio. [harperaudio.com] It runs unabridged at 20 hours in length on 14 cassettes. I do books by audio exclusively now (because of my work), and found this to be not only an excellent book, but also an excellent production.

If you're not familiar with this book, I will make a suggestion: Make sure you get at least half way through before you decide to quit. You won't regret it.

You can pick this up on Amazon, from your local library, or from your local audiobook store if you have one.

Re:Audio Format (-1, Offtopic)

Anonymous Coward | more than 12 years ago | (#4183884)

you could also try
www.kazaa.org

A blowaway book (2)

Roblimo (357) | more than 12 years ago | (#4183905)

I liked "American Gods" so much that as soon as I finished it I told several friends to read it. All of them liked it as much as I did. It deserved a Hugo IMO even though it is *not* SF in the classical sense.

- Robin

Re:A blowaway book (1)

SN74S181 (581549) | more than 12 years ago | (#4184050)

It deserved a Hugo IMO even though it is *not* SF in the classical sense.


Why does it deserve the Hugo, then?

That's a little bit like saying 'it wasn't a cat, in fact, it was a dog, but it deserved the first prize at the cat show, because it was so beautiful.'

Re:A blowaway book (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 12 years ago | (#4184217)

Why does it deserve the Hugo, then?
Because the Hugo is an award for sci-fi or fantasy.
That's a little bit like saying 'it wasn't a cat, in fact, it was a dog, but it deserved the first prize at the cat show, because it was so beautiful.'
No, it's like a terrier winning Champion at Crufts instead of a poodle.

Hugo Awards are *not* just for Sci Fi (1)

Concertina (183807) | more than 12 years ago | (#4184385)

From the World Science Fiction Society constitution:
3.2.1: Unless otherwise specified, Hugo Awards are given for work in the field of science fiction or fantasy appearing for the first time during the previous calendar year.

Fantasy and Sci-Fi are too intrinsically tied together to make meaningless catagorical distinctions for awards. Hence the label "Speculative Fiction" is now preferred.

American flatheads ? (1)

BritInParis (569522) | more than 12 years ago | (#4183907)

with a title like that I almost want to give up science fiction. yechh...

Neverwhere (4, Interesting)

Speare (84249) | more than 12 years ago | (#4183911)

I enjoyed "American Gods" well enough, but I thought it was not up to the par with his earlier work, "Neverwhere."

With the Norse pantheon and American tourist attraction motifs of "American Gods," I kept feeling like it was trying to be too serious for its airy fantasy blend of Douglas Adams' Long Dark Tea-Time of the Soul (the second Dirk Gently book), and LucasArt's Sam and Max Hit the Road graphical adventure game. The narrative is just disjoint enough that reading this book aloud would just lose some of the punch, I think.

Conversely, "Neverwhere" seemed to have fanciful influences from Lewis Carroll's Alice in Wonderland and Mary Poppins, where the delusional whimsy was a cover for the sinister trappings of a far more grave underworld that is best kept out of view. The bounds of the action are easily tracked and scenes segue smoothly, making Neverwhere a great story to read aloud to an older child or a spouse.

But that's just my opinion, and surely, both are quite palatable, and congrats to Neil Gaiman on his well-deserved accolades.

Re:Neverwhere (2, Interesting)

Dokta_C (325729) | more than 12 years ago | (#4183973)

If you enjoyed the Lewis Carroll influences, I'd suggest your pick up Gaimans' new book "Coraline". I'd forgotten just how terrifying buttons can be.

A.Gods was great, but Neverwhere?!? (4, Insightful)

palmech13 (59124) | more than 12 years ago | (#4183988)

I've been a fan of Gaiman for a few years, and can remember being excited at finding Neverwhere ("a whole novel!") a few years back. But it just wasn't that good. The whole thing felt a little flat, and while it did seem to want to be a bit like Alice in Wonderland, it just didn't come close. See Coraline for a better attempt.

American Gods, on the other hand, was a fabulous book. Lots of Gaimanesque details and twists, but felt like it hung together much better. Anyhow, differences of opinion I suppose.

Congrats to Gaiman. It is well deserved.

Re:A.Gods was great, but Neverwhere?!? (2)

Richard_at_work (517087) | more than 12 years ago | (#4184042)

The BBCs (uk) TV version of NeverWhere was fantastic, very well done and perfectly set in London! If you can get hold of a copy, id definatly recommend it!!!

Re:A.Gods was great, but Neverwhere?!? (2)

dpilot (134227) | more than 12 years ago | (#4184061)

I tried looking for it, but it was really tough to find on NTSC. A source for a reliable supply would be welcome.

I also heard that a bigger-budget version was being done, but that was only one rumor. The rumors seem a bit more solid for Good Omens. (By what's-his-name, the Baron Munchousen, Time Bandits, Brazil, Fisher King guy - HE could do it.) One can only hope.

Re:A.Gods was great, but Neverwhere?!? (1)

Kong the Medium (232629) | more than 12 years ago | (#4184137)

You mean its a rumour? [imdb.com] ? The guy is Terry Gilliam [imdb.com] of Monty Python fame.

By the way, did Terry Pratchett ever get a Hugo for his works of art?. This is a guy, who really knows where his towel is.

Re:Neverwhere (2)

FFFish (7567) | more than 12 years ago | (#4184047)

I, too, liked Neverwhere far better than American Gods. For starters, the latter kept reminding me of Small Gods (Pratchett).

a crime! (1)

thefnordling (561523) | more than 12 years ago | (#4183919)

voting must have been done by a bunch of philistine marketroids.

Mieville's Perdidot Street Station [amazon.com] was a brilliantly creative and original book. sooo well written and intelligent. dark humanist tale of adventure and science in an authoritarian world.

gaiman's book was a poorly written & unoriginal reworking of Sandman.

Re:a crime! (2)

jbennetto (41159) | more than 12 years ago | (#4184365)

Well yes, I liked PSS better too. But this is, after all, the Hugo; it's a fan award and can be a little populist. If you want something a little more intellectual (though not always better), look at the Nebulas. I like Bujold, for example; her books are fun. But intelligent? No. Yet she's won four Hugos (3 novels, one novella).

Very good choice (1)

C0CT3AU (595211) | more than 12 years ago | (#4183925)

One of few books that was translated and hit retail market before it was awarded with some of the prices. So we poor eastern europeans have the opportunity to know what is all about.

Cocteau

Bullshit (-1, Troll)

Anonymous Coward | more than 12 years ago | (#4183935)

Why do you nerds always talk about the same shit. Fucking retards. Stupid cunts.

Remember these are the Hugos, (3, Informative)

tb3 (313150) | more than 12 years ago | (#4183948)

And as such are voted on by attendees of Worldcon who are bothered enough to vote. There's between 500 - 1000 votes cast (I can't find accurate figures), but the nominating ballot counts are online. This year, there was a total of 381 nominating ballots for best novel.

We're not talking about a serious statistical sample here, folks.

As a side note, were the Hogu and Black Hole awards presented this year?

Article trolls again (5, Insightful)

tuxedo-steve (33545) | more than 12 years ago | (#4183976)

Troll 1. v.,n. [From the Usenet group alt.folklore.urban] To utter a posting on Usenet designed to attract predictable responses or flames. (Source [tuxedo.org] )

Now, ignoring the Usenet bit, tell me the poster wasn't trolling with this:
Neil Gaiman won this year's Hugo for his novel American Gods.
A much better choice than last year.
(Referring to Harry Potter).

Slashdot editors and story submitters really need to start restraining themselves from editorialising in the story itself. That's what the comment section is for. That's what would be professional.

This isn't intended to be a troll. Now mod me into oblivion.

Re:Article trolls again (1)

SN74S181 (581549) | more than 12 years ago | (#4184073)

Well, Harry Potter is a worse choice, because it is even less of a work of Science Fiction than Gaiman's book.

I read the Sandman comics, when they were coming out. It's good work, though I think Gaiman now suffers from a little bit of 'genre literary chic' (you know, being so associated with those smarmy 'masquerade' sorts who hang out at Cons.)

His current work isn't as good.

Re:Article trolls again (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 12 years ago | (#4184448)

Well, Harry Potter is a worse choice, because it is even less of a work of Science Fiction than Gaiman's book.
And why should that matter to an award for sci-fi or fantasy?

My Thoughts on American Gods (5, Insightful)

sputnik73 (579595) | more than 12 years ago | (#4183996)

While I am basically fond of American Gods, I did have a few quarrels with it. For those of you who haven't read the book, it's in the vein of the Odyssey in that you have a protagonist who is sent from one locale to another, dealing with gods and operating at their whim. The particular gods square off in two different camps - the modern gods and the old gods. The old gods are the standard mythological gods that we all know and love. The modern gods are the modern items we all need in our lives - television, the Internet, beauty, etc. My problem with it was that Gaimain seemed, at some points, to be making up rules for his world, not because they seemed like the way things would be in such a world, but because they were useful rules for him to have in order to advance the plot. In a word, some sections felt contrived. That being said, I thought the writing was superb and that not only was it an entertaining read, it also had very comedic moments. I also really enjoyed the ending [which I will not give away] but let me just say that it was a fun little twist that really wrapped things up nicely. And while I did enjoy the ending, that may have been partially responsible for my feeling that the book was a bit contrived. Oh, also look out for the inclusion of a dead woman walking the Earth. Clive Barker had a similar character in The Damnation Game and both texts do a nice job of showing just what problems someone who is dead runs into when they're not allowed to lie in the ground. All in all, it was one of the better books I've read in the previous year and would suggest you pick it up. After all, it's in paperback now and that's nearly free!

Oh come on!!!! (1)

random1 (37046) | more than 12 years ago | (#4184017)

I don't want to start a war here, but come on, this book was horrendous! Wait, wait, put down the flame throwers, I am a huge fan of Gaiman's. Yes, I actually read Sandman when it was first hitting the streets way back when... (as a matter of fact, I do still have most of the first year and half of the comic in a long-box somewhere...) I have read and loved Smoke and Mirrors (great short stories) as well as Good Omens ( I always keep an extra copy on hand to loan out). But American Gods is drivel compared to these other works. I bought the hardback as soon as it came out, read it in a couple of days and was thoroughly dissapointed.

What bothered me most about this novel was that Gaimen started with an amazing concept, spent three chapters reeling me in, and then it just fell flat. I was under the impression that he was more in the mood to take a road trip across america and wanted his publisher to foot the bill. He meanders for nearly three fourths of the book, only truly returning to his style for the last two or three chapters, as if he has realized "Oh shit, I need an ending"

I will continue to buy and read just about anything he puts out. He is by far and away one of the better literary craftsmen of our times. I am completely blown away with his lyrical command of the language! But to give this book the Hugo? Surely there were others in the genre that actually fleshed out an entire plot from start to finish???

Ok, I'm done. You can ignite the flame throwers now.

I really wanted to like the book (1)

ellem (147712) | more than 12 years ago | (#4184021)

I finally got through it a few weeks ago and I didn't have any particulrly strong feelings for or against it but I did feel like I wanted my time back.

I did like the story of the Norsemen interacting with the Indians (the woo woo kind, not the one's with the Bomb)

Magic Realism (5, Informative)

ajs (35943) | more than 12 years ago | (#4184024)

Magic Realism is a sub-genre of both Fantasy and Science Fiction (though its roots are more firmly in Fantasy than Science Fiction) that was fist recognized in South America, but has spread across the globe. I consider much of Gaiman's work to be in this catagory, though others might argue. Certainly American Gods is part Magic Realism, though also part traditional Fantasy.

It's nice to see Fantasy moving forward beyond the niches in which it had languished for so long. Not that there weren't brilliant Fantasy authors or stories that broke out of the standard molds of the genre, but let's face it: science fiction has roamed far and wide from hard science speculation to space opera to the new wave SF of the 60s to the alternate histories of the 90s. Fantasy has maintained a fairly narrow range during that time, focusing mostly on European mythology in various forms (here I include purists such as Tolkein and origial mythologies such as Moorecock's) and the Horror Fantasy that was pioneered in the late 1800s and early 1900s by Poe and Lovecraft among others.

Fantasy is now re-discovering its vast potential, and I could not be more thrilled. Authors like Ian Banks, Jonathan Lethem and others of the genre are well worth checking out. Hopefully this is only the beginning, and we'll have another three or four sub-genres of Fantasy sprouting in the coming decades!

Re:Magic Realism (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 12 years ago | (#4184090)

A sub-genere, in a sea of genre fiction.

Wow.

'Fantasy' at it's best is just a strip mining and republication of the old stories from antiquity. Basically a Brother's Grimm knockoff.

At it's worst, it becomes somebody's notes from their latest D&D campaign, or worse: the kind of 'Rainbow Brite Smurf Adventure' that Piers Anthony indulges in.

Re:Magic Realism (1)

kirkjobsluder (520465) | more than 12 years ago | (#4184144)

Probably should thow in the cluster of urban fantasy writers such as Charles DeLint [cyberus.ca] , Will Shetterly, Emma Bull and Jan Siegel.

It Gaiman in many ways seems to be pulling into novel format a theology that seems to be at the core of a lot of British fantasy including many of the DC vertigo line which is that god exists, he is a major wanker, but fortunately he is not the only game in town. Probably the best books in this genre is the His Dark Materials [randomhouse.com] trilogy.

And of course Ursula le Guin is still out there publishing the good stuff. One of the problems with fantasy is that for every author like le Guin who asks a different question every novel you have at least five hacks like Lackey and Salvatore.

Re:Magic Realism (1)

ideonode (163753) | more than 12 years ago | (#4184176)

I don't really see magic realism as being a 'sub-genre' of science fiction or fantasy. I'd rather see it as a development of the 60s and 70s (through the works of, for example, Calvino, Angela Carter, Marquez, and later, Rushdie) experiments in novel writing. It developed out of a need to push the boundaries of the traditional realist novel, whilst at the same time providing social commentary - many of the books' social backdrop is in developing world countries, or concerns characters that are underprivileged.

I agree that there are shared tropes between magic realism and science fiction. However, there are big differences as well. A magic realist novel will be pretty much grounded in this world (hence realist), but have some slight quirks of fantasy or otherworldliness (hence magic). With fantasy and science fiction, the world being presented is often an extrapolation of the real world, or a parallel one with significant differences.

Re:Magic Realism (4, Interesting)

darkPHi3er (215047) | more than 12 years ago | (#4184398)

"I don't really see magic realism as being a 'sub-genre' of science fiction or fantasy. I'd rather see it as a development of the 60s and 70s (through the works of, for example, Calvino, Angela Carter, Marquez, and later, Rushdie) experiments in novel writing."

exactly, if you want to go back to James Joyce's "Ulysses" and "The Dubliners", 20th century author's have been struggling with ways to mix metaphorical "alternate realities" to so-called "mainstream" writing.

i think there is a fairly direct link from Joyce to Gaiman, and it passes the writers you mention, with Rushdie and Marquez (if you haven't read "100 Years of Solitude", you missing out on a great (if really twisted) book) being the best commercially known.

But, there is also much of this literary approach present, in the Sci-Fi genre, in both the "Dr. Who" series and Doug Adams' "Hitchhiker" series.

You could also make a pretty good case for ELEMENTS of this approach in Heinlein's last few (post-stroke) books; "Friday", "Number of the Beast" and "Cat Who Walked through Walls", as alternative realities abound.

And some of Harlan's short stories like "Repent Harlequin, Said the Tick-Tock Man" (the story ROCKS, BTW), mix reality and fantasy, though are more psychological in approach.

I liked "Neverwhere" and found "American Gods" oddly affecting, but Mr. Gaiman's "Neverwhere" seemed to another of the mixture of the "LOTR, D&D, Snakes & Ladders RPG" type of writing that's been leaking out of Britain/Europe for the last 20 years.

LeGuin does it as well as anybody, "Dispossessed" is a fabulous book, and the gender-bending shows a pretty "alternate" approach to S/F in and of itself. And it was published in 1975.

Hugo as Sci Fi/Fantasy (3, Informative)

Tiburana (162897) | more than 12 years ago | (#4184062)

I think the Hugos have simply an unstated expansion of the definition to include some fantasy. After all, the winner for Dramatic Presentation was Peter Jackson's 'The Lord of the Rings: The Fellowship of the Ring'.

I am very happy with American gods as their choice. I think Gaiman's writing is lush and well-crafted. While American Gods may thematically reflect the flavor of the Sandman comics/graphic novels as a book it gave Gaiman the space to explore the themes with a lot more depth. Despite having a signature darkness his writing has shown a great range from Stardust to Neverwhere to Smoke and Mirrors and even his children's books. I am glad that he is receving some of the critical acclaim that is his due.

Fantasy is part of the definition (3, Informative)

jbennetto (41159) | more than 12 years ago | (#4184436)

From the [worldcon.org]
constitution of the WSFS:

3.2.1: Unless otherwise specified, Hugo Awards are given for work in the field of science fiction or fantasy appearing for the first time during the previous calendar year.

Admittedly, prior to Harry Potter the winning novel has never been fantasy (Lord of Light and To Your Scattered Bodies Go are probably the closest, and few people would characterize those as anything other than SF). But fantasy often wins in the short fiction catagories.

Sheesh (1)

Reality Master 101 (179095) | more than 12 years ago | (#4184119)

A much better choice than last year [Harry Potter].

Yes, because we know that anything that is popular is automatically bad. And of course we know that anything obscure and unread by the masses is automatically better.

I will never, ever, understand why certain people must hate anything that a lot of other people happen to like (see also: movies, Titanic).

Re:Sheesh (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 12 years ago | (#4184185)

It doesn't mean better in the sense of good writing, but better in the sense of more appropriate for a sciffy award.

Re:Sheesh (2)

gowen (141411) | more than 12 years ago | (#4184354)

I will never, ever, understand why certain people must hate anything that a lot of other people happen to like (see also: movies, Titanic).
Man, I was with you all the way till you got to that parenthesis...

Re:Sheesh (2)

Reality Master 101 (179095) | more than 12 years ago | (#4184418)

Take a look at the rating breakdown of Titanic [imdb.com] at IMDB. Now, it may not be your favorite movie, but if someone is scoring it lower than, say, a 3 (much less the 10.7% that scored it a ONE), then we know that it's just popularity backlash.

Personally, I thought it was a great movie. Not the best movie of all time (the dialogue WAS a little clunky in places), but it is certainly among the greatest disaster sequences ever filmed.

time to buy a copy (2, Funny)

macrohead (585074) | more than 12 years ago | (#4184127)

Sheesh. The one Gaiman book I don't fly through right away turns out to be one of the best.

If you don't like the results... (4, Insightful)

bons (119581) | more than 12 years ago | (#4184214)

If you don't like the results, go to the Worldcon [worldcon.org] and vote [worldcon.org] . It's not that hard. Preregister in advance to save the money, find some friends, get a hotel room, and have a good time.

Some people take their fun way too seriously. The hugos are a classic example of this. It's just a vote by a group of geeks attenting a yearly international party. Your local mayor probably gets more voter turnout in the local election.

See you at Torcon [torcon3.on.ca] .

Good news, bad news (3, Interesting)

adso (469590) | more than 12 years ago | (#4184233)

The good news is that an amazing book won the award, the bad news is that it beat out another amazing book: China Mieville's Perdido Street Station.
This is the first time in years where some books I have read have showed up as nominations ( I read Chronoliths as well, but it was so-so). American Gods and Perdido St. represent (to me) the best things to come out of the SCI-Fi genre in a long, long time.
My love for these books aside, I think the arguements over whether these books are actually Canonical Science Fiction are ridiculous. The genre will stagnate (if it hasn't already) if authors are limited to space operas or extrapolating the latest sci-tech flavor (hmmm, I got it, nanopunk! or how about genomepunk?). Neal Stephenson has moved beyond the genre for the most part, and his books keep getting better. Gaiman and Mieville's work are obviously pushing the boundaries of what is or is not science fiction and this is something to be embraced.
As a bonus, both of these books have covers that are actually interesting (Perdido more so that AG). It's nice to be able to read a book in public which doesn't have a cover that looked like someone moonlighting from Harlequin Romances designed it.

Thoughts on American Gods (1)

rnb (471088) | more than 12 years ago | (#4184282)

I read American Gods on the advice of a friend and I was kind of disappointed.

Personally, I thought the story was great and interesting, but that the writing was horrible. It's been a while since I've read it, unfortunately, but I recall thinking several times that it felt like it was written by a sixth-grader. I thought it distracted quite a bit from the actual story.

Apart from that qualm, though, it was an interesting read. Unfortunately, it hasn't convinced me to read anything else he's written and I can't see myself being compelled to in the future.

Other awards (4, Informative)

vandemar (82106) | more than 12 years ago | (#4184373)

This book is just racking up the awards. It has been nominated for the most prestigious award of each major genre. This may be the first time in history that something like this has happened (too lazy to verify it myself though). Check it out:

In horror: Bram Stoker Award [horror.org] (winner)
In fantasy: World Fantasy Award [sfsite.com] (nominated, the winner has not been decided yet)
In sci-fi: Hugo Award (winner)

Look at the tons of other awards in Neil Gaiman's collection [neilgaiman.com] .

Well deserved (1)

ukgod (547718) | more than 12 years ago | (#4184374)

I'm glad Mr Gaiman is finally getting the plaudits he deserves. This book wasn't even his best work (although its far better than most other writers have managed recently). Here's hoing that Coraline gets some sort of recognition. It's by far the best children's book since way before Harry Potter was plagiarised from The Worst Witch and others.

Congratulations, Neil. (4, Funny)

Concertina (183807) | more than 12 years ago | (#4184441)

The competition for the Hugo award this year was truly intense. Kudos to China Mieville and Lois McMaster Bujold as well for their excellent works.

From Neil's weblog today:
(Memo to self: even if you don't think you're going to win, write a speech. Otherwise you will wind up on the stage in front of several thousand people, finishing an impromptu speech with "Fuck, I got a Hugo.")

Fortunately, we mere mortals aren't plauged by such concerns.
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