#PuppyGate or How the Hugos lost my Respect

Hello my Imaginary Friends,

I’ve talked about the Sad Puppies before but as it turns out they’ve escalated. I planned on writing a long essay about the subject but giants have started to enter the fray. I’ll leave a plethora of links at the bottom of this post for those that are interested.

What are Sad/Sick Puppies

The Sad Puppies and Sick Puppies are groups of Science Fiction and Fantasy fans that are sick of what they call “Social Justice Warriors” corrupting the pure essence of genre fiction. Or in some cases they say they are about promoting authors that would normally never get on the ballot on their own.

It almost sounds plausible. Almost until you hear that the second architect is Theodore Beale (AKA Vox Day). If you don’t recognize the name you might recognize the movement he founded called GamerGate. The association of Beale alone makes me not trust them.

Their members can’t seem to come up with a consistent explanation. Some range from, “I miss science-fiction that was just adventure and not social criticism” to “too much emphasis has been put on pushing agendas in science fiction when good books are being ignored”

What did they do? / #PuppyGate

They legally, if not ethically, created a slate of authors that they believed should be nominated and then voted as a group to make sure they made the ballot. Meaning that between 2 to 5 of each category in the Hugo’s are Sad Puppy candidates (That’s out of 5 by the way).

Read about both sides below.

How it makes me feel

This is the first time since I’ve decided to become an author that I’m glad I haven’t been published and that I’m not involved in this world. Had I heard about this kind of thing when I started I would have never tried to be published.

I try to include diverse characters in my books. It’s not always easy but it’s a reflection of our world and should be done. I want people to read my books and relate to some of the characters, not just white-straight-men but everyone.

I want politics in my science fiction and fantasy. I want social issues to be reflected in what I read and write. Anyone who tells you there weren’t social or political ideals in classic science fiction needs to go re-watch Star Trek, Re-Read Asimov, and get their heads out of their asses.

Are the awards broken? I have no clue but I think they might be. This may turn them into a political party style event, that would suck considering that tactic doesn’t work well for regular people even in politics.

What Now

I had dreams of maybe someday winning the “Triple Crown” of Science fiction (Hugo, Nebula, and Campbell Memorial Award). Now that I’ve read up on them and followed the politics, not to mention that a lot of the authors I greatly respect haven’t won all that many awards means I’m not sure how much I care anymore.

This whole debacle has soured me on these sorts of things.

I’ll settle for someday living off my writing. That’s all I really need. Anything more is bonus.

Further Research

Here are all the links I promised and some of the better explanations:

And in the spirit of showing both sides:

And finally if you’re willing to dedicate the time, here are George R.R. Martin’s thoughts on the whole thing:

 

To Borrow Ajay Fry’s tagline, “See you in the future”,

Éric

Sharing is awesome!

2 thoughts on “#PuppyGate or How the Hugos lost my Respect”

  1. I’m not even sure I understand all of this, and not just because I’m on the very periphery of the geek world. The science fiction I have been exposed to (and granted, that is very very little) has always included some kind of social commentary attached to it. From Star Trek to Firefly… and any example that I think of does have some kind of philosophical comment to make about the world in which the characters live. Is it even really possible to create these alternate realities without a comment as to how if not the author but at least the characters are agreeing with / conflicting against the world in which they live?

    It’s sad that people feel they have to take these kinds of steps to get their agenda pushed forward. You’d think that if they were right (as in correct, not as in conservative or liberal, note the lack of capitalization) that it would be apparent to everyone and that others would join them.

Leave a Comment

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.