In a universe at a slightly different frequency
September 19, 2015 10:06 PM   Subscribe

In a universe at a slightly different frequency than ours there was an alternate Hugo Ballot. Below the fold are links to the authors and works: posted by ladyriffraff (28 comments total) 57 users marked this as a favorite

George RR Martin, in honor of the occasion of the 2015 Hugos created his own award called the Alfies, for Alfred Bester. He gave them out at the Hugo Losers party (a tradition he started many years ago). Made out of genuine 1950s car hood ornaments he awarded them to folks:
Patrick Rothfuss
Ursula Vernon
Jo Walton
John Joseph Adams
Liz Gorinsky

Special Alfies to Marko Kloos and Annie Bellet who withdrew because of the slating. [Annie would have made it onto the ballot without the slate. She found out at the party.] He also gave an Alfie to Eric Flint for his moderation during all the debates.

Recommend something for the 2016 Hugos or see what others are recommending.
posted by ladyriffraff at 10:07 PM on September 19, 2015 [3 favorites]

What is the frequency of the universe? Planck-times per second?
posted by ROU_Xenophobe at 10:25 PM on September 19, 2015 [2 favorites]

Thanks for the suggestions, every one of the best novels is worth reading, by the way. They each try to do something very different and succeed in interesting ways (I like the Three Body Problem, which won the actual Hugo, least, but it wasn't bad)

Missing awesome books that came out in 2014:
Peter Hamilton's Abyss Beyond Dreams (Assuming you have read all 10,000 pages in the earlier Commonwealth Series, this is a new sequence in the same universe)
Max Gladstone's Two Serpents Rise (Mesoamerican setting, magic as capital)
The Peripheral by William Gibson
The Martian by Andy Weir (seriously good Old School SF)

I also heard good things about The Girl With All The Gifts by M.R. Carey
posted by blahblahblah at 10:28 PM on September 19, 2015 [3 favorites]

The Goblin a emperor probably would have been my pick for best novel in this universe, but City of Stairs is lovely stuff. Lock In is still on my to read pile, but I do have a copy signed "To arts from the Internet".
posted by Artw at 10:28 PM on September 19, 2015

The Martian may or may not have eligibility problems, I guess we would have found out if it had made the list.
posted by Artw at 10:29 PM on September 19, 2015 [1 favorite]

This is a good year for SFF as well: Seveneyes (which, despite its flaws, has a stunning first 2/3), Ancillary Mercy, The Red, A Darker Shade of Magic, Angles of Attack, and Nemesis Games all rocked.

Plus, I have heard good things about The Traitor Baru Cormorant, Grace of Kings, and The Lord of All Things

Letdown by The Annihilation Score (I read everything Stross writes, this didn't knock it out of the park), Armada (of course!), and a bunch of random highly-rated Kindle-only titles (I must learn my lesson).
posted by blahblahblah at 10:43 PM on September 19, 2015 [3 favorites]

Rothfuss's Kingkiller novels are excellent but Slow Regard, set in the same world, blew them both away IMO. I know somebody very much like Auri so it resonated with me very strongly, but I think anybody can feel a connection to her. Incredible work.
posted by scalefree at 10:44 PM on September 19, 2015 [2 favorites]

For next year, Phillip Sandifer is putting together "Weird Kitties: An Organized Anti-Slate" with the goal of raising awareness of enough GOOD potential nominees (especially in the less-commonly-read categories, where the Corrupt Canines did the most nomination damage) to make the fascist politics and illiterate writing of VD and his STDs irrelevant. Weird Kitties Updates (Open Threads & Reviews) so far. I don't think he got the math right (based on my reading of the vote count results) and I worry that he may end up with too long a 'long list' to make a big difference, but it's worth watching... if only because IT HELPS FIND SOME DECENT SFF TO READ!
posted by oneswellfoop at 10:56 PM on September 19, 2015 [3 favorites]

Wow, those assholes (the various self-styled "Puppies") really DID break the Hugos.

Whatever else happened this year, we learned that they have terrible taste, and have absolutely no business setting themselves up as slate-makers.
posted by AsYouKnow Bob at 11:01 PM on September 19, 2015 [11 favorites]

I'll stick up for "Totaled" by Kary English on the Sad Puppies slate. And I was happy to cast a vote for Ancillary Sword; though it didn't win, I'm eagerly awaiting Ancillary Mercy on October 6!
posted by Soliloquy at 12:39 AM on September 20, 2015 [1 favorite]

So in a world without Puppies, Seanan McGuire is once more on the ballot for some totally undeserving BS? Jesus, I've never sympathized with them more.
posted by corb at 2:25 AM on September 20, 2015 [1 favorite]

Speaking as someone who was "denied" a spot on the ballot this year, I think it's time to let this year's Hugos go. They're done, in the books, over. Additionally, many of the books/works on this alternate ballot (again, including mine) were nominated/finalists for, or won, other awards, in genre and outside of them. There was recognition to go around, even with the Hugos temporarily gamed for the year.

There comes a time where chewing over past events just starts to feel pathological. We're a month past the actual Hugo award ceremony now, at which it was definitively shown that trying to game the system will be met with massive rejection from the general Hugo votership. This and most other lessons from the event are already learned and digested (or not). This plate of space beans has definitely been consumed.

What I would personally rather see at this point is more discussion of what's worth reading and nominating for next year's Hugos, this year already being one of the better years for the genre in a while, and what we can do to encourage a large nominating turnout so that attempts to slate next year (the various puppies are still out there and still wanting to dominate the ballots) are swamped by people's own personal and individual choices. Those to my mind are much more fruitful discussions at this point.
posted by jscalzi at 2:50 AM on September 20, 2015 [32 favorites]

Letdown by The Annihilation Score (I read everything Stross writes, this didn't knock it out of the park)

I only read the Laundry series :-) There are definitely earlier books with more mind-blowing threats, but the reviews I've seen has had so much "but the laundry is about Bob, what is this middle-aged woman doing here and why does she have mixed feelings over having been dumped in the last book" over them (sometimes explicitly spelled out) so I'm adding a bunch of points to the score just because of that.
posted by effbot at 3:47 AM on September 20, 2015 [1 favorite]

I didn't like The Anihilation Score that much on my first reading, mainly because I didn't think the superhero stuff gelled with the Laundryverse that much in tone (and Alan Moore did the same superhero thing with Mina Harker in the LOEG, and it wasn't that spiffy either), but The Rhesus Chart improved a lot on a second reading, so I'm going to reread it in a few months after letting it stew for a while and see if it improves.

That said, I do wonder about (rot13) Zvpunry'f eryngvbafuvc jvgu Qenphyn naq vs vg qvq vaibyir nf zhpu frkhny fghss nf Zb'f jvgu Yrpgre.
posted by sukeban at 4:12 AM on September 20, 2015

Speaking as someone who was "denied" a spot on the ballot this year, I think it's time to let this year's Hugos go.

Well, I'm still happy to talk about the good stuff from this years Hugo's, but I am sick of talking about the fucking puppies, that's for sure. I guess they get one more go and then we're done with them, but until they actually drop their slate on the nominations I think I'm going to try and ignore them.
posted by Artw at 6:59 AM on September 20, 2015

I appreciate the names here. I can' t keep up, approaching my 70s (age, not decade).

I put the puppies on my "to avoid" list (life begins to look too short, by my age, to support people I wouldn't like, even if they're arguably good writers)

Adding names from the above that I wouldn't have recognized, so I'll read them when I find them.
posted by hank at 8:56 AM on September 20, 2015

Thanks for compiling this! I know that these things take a good bit of work.
posted by Going To Maine at 9:21 AM on September 20, 2015 [1 favorite]

>Speaking as someone who was "denied" a spot on the ballot this year,

That's because you just not a very popular author ! (I read this in a book somewhere)
posted by AGameOfMoans at 9:57 AM on September 20, 2015 [6 favorites]

Ok so I understand that "The Martian" may or may not have eligibility problems - too bad, because that was a fine, old school piece of technology driven science fiction. But what was wrong with "The Peripheral"? Did that really not make the cut for nomination? Because I thought it was a fine return to classic SF by Gibson...
posted by RedOrGreen at 1:26 PM on September 20, 2015 [2 favorites]

I'm curious about that myself. I'm not aware of him deliberately declining a nomination, so maybe it's victim to Hugo nominators thinking he has too many rockets or just craving novelty. Or maybe it's lurking there just off the list.
posted by Artw at 1:42 PM on September 20, 2015

I had huge issues with The Peripheral not the least of which were the 800 word chapter/scene changes.
posted by AGameOfMoans at 3:33 PM on September 20, 2015

Not to focus on the Hugos, but I really enjoyed both "City of Stairs" and "The Goblin Emperor"- I think I liked City of Stairs more, because that was incredibly well done, highly original worldbuilding, and the end was more impactful. It also shows that fantasy doesn't have to be reactionary.

Also, "Jackalope Wives' and "When it Ends, He Catches Her" were both brilliant, emotion-evoking works. The one good thing that has come out of this is I've had the chance to be exposed to so much excellent writers. It's really a good time to be reading now.
posted by happyroach at 3:35 PM on September 20, 2015 [2 favorites]

I'm actually a little annoyed that CIty of Stairs seems to have a sequel coming, because it works so well as a standalone.

Not annoyed enough not to preorder it, obviously.
posted by Artw at 4:38 PM on September 20, 2015 [1 favorite]

PSA: Annie Bellet is super awesome in person.
posted by scaryblackdeath at 9:23 PM on September 20, 2015 [1 favorite]

I'm also VERY annoyed by the City of Stairs sequel – annoyed I don't have it in my hands right now! :P
posted by taz at 11:00 PM on September 20, 2015 [1 favorite]

I wasn't expecting to get great music recommendations out of this thread, but I'm really enjoying The Race for Space. The space race ended well before I was born, but this album makes it feel contemporary and thrilling. Every single time that The Other Side comes on, I stop what I'm doing and wait to see if the crew of Apollo 8 return from the far side of the moon.

It's eligible for best dramatic presentation (short form), and it's got a good shot at being one of my nominees.
posted by Banknote of the year at 10:18 AM on September 26, 2015 [1 favorite]

In the spirit of adding diversity and some of which I believe are eligible this year - 15 Diverse Magical Fantasy Novels
posted by ladyriffraff at 10:41 AM on October 5, 2015 [1 favorite]

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