Estimating Rabid Puppy Numbers

How many Rabid Puppies voted in the Hugo Awards: here are my guesstamations.

Best Novel: Rabids should have voted Uprooted 1 and then Seveneves. Uprooted came second, so if we look at the round for third place we can see how many preferences went from Uprooted to Seveneves.

Position 2 count: Seveneves 520, Position 3 count: Seveneves 856. Votes gained from Uprooted = 336. However, not all of these will be Rabids as these were not distinctively Rabid works.

Best Novella: Rabids should have voted Penric’s Demon 1 and then Perfect State. Penric came second so we can look again at the change from position 2 to position 3.

Position 2 count: Perfect State 301, Position 3 count: Perfect State 716. Votes gained from Penric = 415. Again not all of these will be Rabids as these were not distinctively Rabid works.

Best Novelette: Rabids should have voted Obits 1 and then “What Price Humanity?”. Obits made it to position 3, so this time we look at the change from 3 to 4.

Position 3 count: “What Price Humanity?” 141, Position 4 count: “What Price Humanity?” 431. Votes gained from Obits = 290. Possibly a better Rabid estiate as we are further down the ballot and “What Price Humanity?” was a Castalia entry.

Best Short Story: Rabids should have voted to make love real and slammed their 1st preferences into Space Raptor Butt Invasion and then 2nd prefs to Seven Kill Tiger. The Tingle Opus was in Position 3.

Position 3 count: Seven Kill Tiger 180, Position 4 count: Seven Kill Tiger 368. Votes gained from Tingle = 180. Much more confident of this figure. Tingle had broad popularity but Seven Kill Tiger was distinctly Rabid.

Best Related Work: The most Rabid dominated category and possibly Rabids felt less need for disciplined voting in this category. No Award won but the most award-worthy contender came in second. People following the Rabid ballot should have voted Between Light and Shadow 1 and Moira Greyland 2. We can check by looking at position 2 and 3 races.

Position 2 count: Greyland 128, Position 3 count: Greyland 322. Votes gained from Light and Shadow = 194.

Best Graphic Novel: Rabids should have voted Sandman and then No Award – which is pretty much how the category went. So how many votes did No Award pick up from Sandman?

Position 1 count: No Award 444, Position 2 count: 1011. Votes gained from Sandman 567 but unlikely these were all Rabids.

Not bothering with Best Dramatic Presentation awards

Best Editor Short Form: Rabids should have voted 1 for Jerry Pournelle and then No Award. This should be a very characteristic vote for Rabids – although as a SF veteran Pournelle should have drawn some non-rabid votes. Unfortunately, No Award beat Pournelle, so we can’t spot the Rabid signal in the preferences in the same way.

In the race for position 1, Pournelle was eliminated in Pass 3. At Pass 4 63 of his votes went to no preference. That seems too low based on the other figures, so maybe some Rabids put others after No Award.

Best Editor Long Form: The man himself, Vox Day, was on the ballot. Rabids should have put him 1 and very few other people would have. Vox got 165 1st preferences.

Rabids should have put Toni Weisskopf second. Looking at the preferences shift after Vox day is eliminated in Pass 2, 135 of his preferences go to Toni Weisskopf. Perhaps more of a measure of Rabid ballot discipline than numbers.

Skipping through the rest:

  • Best pro-artist: estimate based on prefs = 225 but not distinctly rabid pattern
  • Semiprozine: 67 but hard to tell as Rabids officially went for No Award. Puppyish Sci-Phi got 197 votes to come last after all rounds.
  • Fanzine: Hard to tell. Castalia House blog came last (298) all out. Rabids should have put 770 first but hard to see the preference trail there.
  • Fancast: 152 as a reasonable estimate
  • Fan writer: 160 a strong Rabid signal between Castalia Blog authors
  • Fan artist: 159

I think, looking at all these figures, the ones with stronger Rabid connections come out around 160 to 180 votes. I think that is probably the right estimate for people voting along strict Rabid lines – with maybe 50 to 60 more voting along semi-Rabid lines, plus some residual Sad Puppies and others.





7 responses to “Estimating Rabid Puppy Numbers”

  1. In novelette, I ranked What Price Humanity? at 4 directly under Obits at 3 with Brooke Bolander and Hao Jingfang in the two top spots, but I’m definitely no puppy, so some of the transferred votes might be other non-puppies like me.


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