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Pingo

George R. R. Martin is a Good, Good Man

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Never mind the joke that George R.R. Martin is not on Twitter because he killed all 140 characters.  The man is righteous.

 

So maybe you knew that the 73rd World Science Fiction Convention just wound up this past weekend in Spokane, Washington.  That's the venerable SFF convention that gives out the venerable and prestigious Hugo Awards.

 

(Article about that and this here: http://www.wired.com/2015/08/won-science-fictions-hugo-awards-matters/ )

 

In 1976 Martin and Gardner Dozois organized a Hugo Losers' Party to cheer and console those whose works were stellar enough to be nominated but didn't manage to land the big rocket.  This became a tradition, although other people later hosted the parties.

 

This spring there was some hanky panky about the Hugo Award nominations, leading to some hurt feelings (it's covered in the Wired story and you can also find news about it in the Wall Street Journal, the Guardian, the New York Times, NPR -- it's a big deal).

 

After the Hugo ceremony (which turned out better and cheerier than expected), Martin, who has been doing very well off "Game of Thrones", invited all participants to a party in a rented historic mansion nearby.

 

There he gave rubber coneheads to the Hugo winners to wear.  To others he gave out trophies, "Alfies", named after edgy early SF author Alfred Bester, made from vintage Chevrolet hood ornaments shaped like rockets.

 

Martin presented Alfies to the people who were left off the ballot entirely due to the aforementioned hanky panky, people who in a normal year would have been in the running (The story doesn't say, but I do hope one was Eugie Foster, who died so very young last year and whose brilliant story "When It Ends, He Catches Her", a favorite for the awards and her last chance at a Hugo, had been pushed off the ballot).  He also presented them to Annie Bellet and Marko Kloos, who had withdrawn their nominations when they learned they had gotten onto the ballot through others' shenanigans.  Finally he presented Alfies to Eric Flint, who has been a voice of reason and calm during the whole business, and to Robert Silverberg, who is just awesome.

 

Martin did a lot to bring cheer and celebration to a sad situation.  Good for him, I say.

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Good on him.

I saw someone nicely point out this morning that the angry peoples argument that they are retaliating as the nomination system is rigged against them makes no sense as they then rigged the system in their favour, which they couldn't have done if it really was rigged against them.

So they succesfully rigged the system in their favour then lost every possible award. Bravo gentlemen, bravo.

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The Hugo awards are one of those things that I care absolutely zip about, so I wasn't aware any of this was going on until I read a blog post about it by Patrick Rothfuss.

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As much as I wish he'd spend more time writing the last few GoT books and less time on all his other projects, I fully admit that A) that wish is a selfish one and B) Martin has always been a stand-up guy. He's been in the SF/F writing game for a loooong time and, to my knowledge, has had a lot of well-reasoned and heartening things to say about the industry and the world.

 

Pingo, I haven't paid much attention to the Hugos in a good while, thanks for posting this.

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Careful, I feel this is gliding very close to being in Beekeepers, especially for the opinions being stated.

Edited by Pegazus
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Careful, I feel this is gliding very close to being in Beekeepers, especially for the opinions being stated.

I'll be watching the thread, but so far it's not beekeepers bound.

 

If the discussion changes to the politics behind the Puppies or their opposition, then perhaps it will head there. But so long as it avoid that, we're fine.

 

For my part, I have several writers in my FB feed and while I've never paid attention to the Hugos before, this year it was impossible to avoid the drama. Both sides were all over my feed with it, and Mr. Martin definitely took sides, although is side was decidedly of the "We should celebrate quality, entertaining sci-fi and fantasy, and not get bogged down in whether the writer supports these politics or those". For that, I applaud him.

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he may be a nasty, character murdering monster in his books, but he's got a good head on his shoulders, and a good heart in his chest

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I appreciate what he did.  I have never been particularly interested in the Hugo's.  It doesn't even rate my view of the Oscars which is a great indicator of movies that I wont like. ::): 

 

That said, the shenanigans that went on in this Hugo was pretty extreme and the outcome was also pretty humorous.  I just feel for those authors who got pushed around because of it.   

 

So Kudos to Mr. Martin for adding some cheeriness to an issue fraught with dreariness.  Maybe I should look into those stories that earned Alfies...

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I never could get into GoT, which is odd considering the amount of fantasy I read, but I've enjoyed other books of his (Tuf Voyaging is a particular favorite).

 

i agree with him that the awards should be about the work itself.

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I despise The Game of Thrones but GRRM seems like a good sort.  He supports many of my friends in miniature painting as well as many artists I admire.  I hope that he puts some thought into his financial legacy to continue the good that he does in life.

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Game of Thrones doesn't do it for me.... but I've liked a few of his other books.

 

He also seems to be a decent person!

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Thank you Pingo for bringing this to my attention. A bunch of reading later, and I am now up to speed.

 

And I actually like the Game of Thrones series. Actually all my sisters and I have watched it, which is amazing given how anti-geek one of them is. I will watch the series, but I will read the series only after it is finished. It's the same pact I made when I got halfway through the Wheel of Time series. 

 

However, I wish GRRM all the best, and he does seem like a very decent human being. 

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I had heard about the Hugo controversy off and on, but this is the first I'd heard of Martin's actions. Good for him.

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