Episode 141: Oh, no! Another awards discussion

There really wasn’t much excuse, except that our two heroes found themselves in the Gershwin Room with no idea at all about what they would discuss and so, with apologies, they ended up discussing awards again.  It wasn’t intended, the discussion is being had elsewhere anyway, and solemn promises have been made that it will not happen again (at least for a while). If, however, this doesn’t put you off, then sit back and relax while Gary and Jonathan discuss just what the point of awards is anyway and whether there’s anything left to say about science fiction.

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4 thoughts on “Episode 141: Oh, no! Another awards discussion”

  1. I’ve always approached the Hugo Award as a popular award where the entertainment value of the story is as important, if not more important, than its literary merit. I see no reason to change the method of selection or voting. Membership is open to everyone and everyone may vote. So if the fan base for a particular sub-genre wanted to they could join and they could vote for their preference. i really don’t see anyone being disfranchised in the current voting system unless I’m missing something.

    When the Nebula Award commenced I looked to that as an award based on literary merit. I figured if a novel was on both nomination lists it would be worth reading as it had both entertainment and literary merit.

    At some point I began to doubt the judgement of the SFWA. I guess as it developed and grew the choice of best novel began to be influenced by factors other than straight literary merit.

    I’ve often thought it would be a good idea for the Nebula Nomination list to be chosen by a panel that would select the works but then for the nominations to be voted on by the full membership (with no write-in choice). Sort of the best of both worlds.

  2. I realize this is a somewhat belated note–I forgot to leave it when the episode was new–but I think this “award” discussion moved into some new territory that I’d like to see more explored: the balkanization of the f/sf community into barely communicating subgenres. I don’t think it’s a good thing, or a bad thing, in itself, but I do think that not recognizing the fragmentation of the field causes a lot of emotional friction.

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