More Packet Pondering

Thank you for all the helpful suggestions so far. I did an initial run through 2017 and came back loaded with way too much stuff.

I’m thinking of a new plan. First compile a large collection of favourites from 2017 and then put that on Smashwords so people can download it in any format they like. That will be the “bumper” version. Then cut that compilation down to something a lot more readable with a focus just on a small number of things – that can be the concise version for the packet. The packet version can then have a link to the bumper version.

I liked that idea so much I then wasted the rest of the day making book covers.



Packet Advice

Now that the cat it out of the bag (it was the easiest way to hide him from the feds), it is time to ask for help, advice, suggestions for the Hugo Packet! No request yet from Worldcon but I should imagine they’ll stuff quickly when they ask for it.

  • Firstly I’m not aiming to win this thing and I don’t like to feel like I’m competing unless the stakes are really low or absurd. However, I would kind of like my Hugo packet stuff to be so really good that people say ‘I’m voting X number 1 but Camshaft Ferple’s Hugo Packet was really good even if I’m putting him 6th’.
  • Secondly, I’d rather have more than less. I can see advantages to less as a voting strategy but I’m more interested in people finding something they like.
  • Thirdly, variety is good – so different styles of things rather than multiple examples of the same style of thing.
  • Fourthly, it has to be fan-writing obviously but that is a fluid category.
  • Fifthly, I’d prefer to avoid Puppy related stuff but I’m open to suggestions – and the posts on Vox Day’s attempt to spoil Collapsing Empire’s sales may be topical. Also, the stuff on the Dragon Awards may seem off in a Hugo packet, so I’m less keen on that.
  • Sixthly, I have no issues with putting daft and silly stuff in there. It’s part of the brand 🙂
  • Seventhly, politics is fine so long as it has SFnal elements IMHO.
  • PICTURES – yes, they can make file size big and upset some ebook formats and aren’t accessible to everybody but for many of us, a visual/spatial aspect is super important for making sense of things.

This post was the first cut of possible things. Some things I can just link to or have part 1 of and a link maybe?

So…ideas, suggestion, tips, faves, advice (I will have stuff copyedited (!) so don’t tell me that a hundred times! ) – put it in the comments and I’ll get to work! 2017 posts only obviously



Hugo 2018 Finalist Some Initial Thoughts

Best Novel:

The finalists are an interesting generational cross-section in terms of career stage (I don’t know their actual ages). I’m most looking forward to Mur Lafferty’s Six Wakes, which I had intended to get to before the ballot closed but didn’t. 3 books read already and 3 to read.


Novellas have been on the rise over the past few years, led by It looks like the most interesting category this year. Most looking forward to The Black Tides of Heaven, by JY Yang which is another meant-to-read-but-didn’t.


I didn’t nominate any of these! Lots of reading to do here. Most looking forward to “Children of Thorns, Children of Water,” by Aliette de Bodard .

Short Story:

Another set of names to conjour with! Those I haven’t read, I’ve heard of except “Carnival Nine,” by Caroline M. Yoachim – so that’s one to look forward to.

Best Related Work:

Banks v Le Guin? Zoiks! Add to that Zoe Quinn’s takedown of Gamergate, plus books on Octavia Butler and Harlan Ellison. I’ve enjoyed what I’ve read by Liz Bourke but it’s a tough category this year.

Graphic Story:

Not much to say here – My Favorite Thing is Monsters by Emil Ferris had some buzz around it just before nominations and I haven’t read it yet.

Best Dramatic Presentation – Long Form

That looks like a really, really good movie marathon!

Best Dramatic Presentation – Short Form

Yay! Good Place! Not-so-yay, Star Trek Discovery: Episode I Didn’t Like Much. Black Mirror is a very strong contender but I’m looking forward to Clipping again.

Editor of Any Length

I struggle to engage with these categories.


Can anybody beat Uncanny? Maybe! A strong field and each of the other nominees have their own distinct thing that sets them apart from Uncanny.


Rather like Semiprozine, the nominees make the field look healthy and vibrant. Exciting mix of old and new. File770 obviously but Galactic Journey and SF Bluestocking have had good years. RSR has been doing its thing (congrats Greg and Eric), but looking forward to seeing more of nerds of a feather, flock together as I haven’t really engaged with it before.


I’m not a big consumer of fancasts and I’m not sure what is hot or not right now 🙂


They’ll let anybody in these days, including talking-cat owning delusional fraudsters. Aside from him, that’s a bunch of heavy hitters. Mike, Foz Meadows and Sarah Gailey are the three I’ve read most of, I followed Bogi Takács on Twitter in 2017 and they are well woth reading. I know of Charles Payseur’s Quick Sip Reviews but I haven’t read much of his work yet.

Artists (Fan + Pro)

Not much to say yet on these.


Easier to nominate than to vote for! Great to see Divine Cities in there. I’ve at least engaged with World of the Five Gods, by Lois McMaster Bujold. Lots of other meaty stuff there. I’m not familiar with The Memoirs of Lady Trent, by Marie Brennan – so that will be interesting to look at if time permits.


Not much to say on the YA or Campbell other than a big hoorah for Summer in Orcus, which was an event for 2017 – and also yet another refutation that only trad-published things are valued by Hugo voters.

2018 Hugo Finalists

Finalists for Hugo Awards 2018 have been announced. Lots of good stuff aside from one obvious impostor in fan writer 🙂

2018 Hugo Awards Finalists

Best Novel

  • The Collapsing Empire, by John Scalzi (Tor)
  • New York 2140, by Kim Stanley Robinson (Orbit)
  • Provenance, by Ann Leckie (Orbit)
  • Raven Stratagem, by Yoon Ha Lee (Solaris)
  • Six Wakes, by Mur Lafferty (Orbit)
  • The Stone Sky, by N.K. Jemisin (Orbit)

Best Novella

  • All Systems Red, by Martha Wells ( Publishing)
  • “And Then There Were (N-One),” by Sarah Pinsker (Uncanny, March/April 2017)
  • Binti: Home, by Nnedi Okorafor ( Publishing)
  • The Black Tides of Heaven, by JY Yang ( Publishing)
  • Down Among the Sticks and Bones, by Seanan McGuire ( Publishing)
  • River of Teeth, by Sarah Gailey ( Publishing)

Best Novelette

  • “Children of Thorns, Children of Water,” by Aliette de Bodard (Uncanny, July-August 2017)
  • “Extracurricular Activities,” by Yoon Ha Lee (, February 15, 2017)
  • “The Secret Life of Bots,” by Suzanne Palmer (Clarkesworld, September 2017)
  • “A Series of Steaks,” by Vina Jie-Min Prasad (Clarkesworld, January 2017)
  • “Small Changes Over Long Periods of Time,” by K.M. Szpara (Uncanny, May/June 2017)
  • “Wind Will Rove,” by Sarah Pinsker (Asimov’s, September/October 2017)

Best Short Story

  • “Carnival Nine,” by Caroline M. Yoachim (Beneath Ceaseless Skies, May 2017)
  • “Clearly Lettered in a Mostly Steady Hand,” by Fran Wilde (Uncanny, September 2017)
  • “Fandom for Robots,” by Vina Jie-Min Prasad (Uncanny, September/October 2017)
  • “The Martian Obelisk,” by Linda Nagata (, July 19, 2017)
  • “Sun, Moon, Dust” by Ursula Vernon, (Uncanny, May/June 2017)
  • “Welcome to your Authentic Indian Experience™,” by Rebecca Roanhorse (Apex, August 2017)

Best Related Work

  • Crash Override: How Gamergate (Nearly) Destroyed My Life, and How We Can Win the Fight Against Online Hate, by Zoe Quinn (PublicAffairs)
  • Iain M. Banks (Modern Masters of Science Fiction), by Paul Kincaid (University of Illinois Press)
  • A Lit Fuse: The Provocative Life of Harlan Ellison, by Nat Segaloff (NESFA Press)
  • Luminescent Threads: Connections to Octavia E. Butler, edited by Alexandra Pierce and Mimi Mondal (Twelfth Planet Press)
  • No Time to Spare: Thinking About What Matters, by Ursula K. Le Guin (Houghton Mifflin Harcourt)
  • Sleeping with Monsters: Readings and Reactions in Science Fiction and Fantasy, by Liz Bourke (Aqueduct Press)

Best Graphic Story

  • Black Bolt, Volume 1: Hard Time, written by Saladin Ahmed, illustrated by Christian Ward, lettered by Clayton Cowles (Marvel)
  • Bitch Planet, Volume 2: President Bitch, written by Kelly Sue DeConnick, illustrated by Valentine De Landro and Taki Soma, colored by Kelly Fitzpatrick, lettered by Clayton Cowles (Image Comics)
  • Monstress, Volume 2: The Blood, written by Marjorie M. Liu, illustrated by Sana Takeda (Image Comics)
  • My Favorite Thing is Monsters, written and illustrated by Emil Ferris (Fantagraphics)
  • Paper Girls, Volume 3, written by Brian K. Vaughan, illustrated by Cliff Chiang, colored by Matthew Wilson, lettered by Jared Fletcher (Image Comics)
  • Saga, Volume 7, written by Brian K. Vaughan, illustrated by Fiona Staples (Image Comics)

Best Dramatic Presentation – Long Form

  • Blade Runner 2049, written by Hampton Fancher and Michael Green, directed by Denis Villeneuve (Alcon Entertainment / Bud Yorkin Productions / Torridon Films / Columbia Pictures)
  • Get Out, written and directed by Jordan Peele (Blumhouse Productions / Monkeypaw Productions / QC Entertainment)
  • The Shape of Water, written by Guillermo del Toro and Vanessa Taylor, directed by Guillermo del Toro (TSG Entertainment / Double Dare You / Fox Searchlight Pictures)
  • Star Wars: The Last Jedi, written and directed by Rian Johnson (Lucasfilm, Ltd.)
  • Thor: Ragnarok, written by Eric Pearson, Craig Kyle, and Christopher Yost; directed by Taika Waititi (Marvel Studios)
  • Wonder Woman, screenplay by Allan Heinberg, story by Zack Snyder & Allan Heinberg and Jason Fuchs, directed by Patty Jenkins (DC Films / Warner Brothers)

Best Dramatic Presentation – Short Form

  • Black Mirror: “USS Callister,” written by William Bridges and Charlie Brooker, directed by Toby Haynes (House of Tomorrow)
  • “The Deep” [song], by Clipping (Daveed Diggs, William Hutson, Jonathan Snipes)
  • Doctor Who: “Twice Upon a Time,” written by Steven Moffat, directed by Rachel Talalay (BBC Cymru Wales)
  • The Good Place: “Michael’s Gambit,” written and directed by Michael Schur (Fremulon / 3 Arts Entertainment / Universal Television)
  • The Good Place: “The Trolley Problem,” written by Josh Siegal and Dylan Morgan, directed by Dean Holland (Fremulon / 3 Arts Entertainment / Universal Television)
  • Star Trek: Discovery: “Magic to Make the Sanest Man Go Mad,” written by Aron Eli Coleite & Jesse Alexander, directed by David M. Barrett (CBS Television Studios)

Best Editor – Short Form

  • John Joseph Adams
  • Neil Clarke
  • Lee Harris
  • Jonathan Strahan
  • Lynne M. Thomas & Michael Damian Thomas
  • Sheila Williams

Best Editor – Long Form

  • Sheila E. Gilbert
  • Joe Monti
  • Diana M. Pho
  • Devi Pillai
  • Miriam Weinberg
  • Navah Wolfe

Best Professional Artist

  • Galen Dara
  • Kathleen Jennings
  • Bastien Lecouffe Deharme
  • Victo Ngai
  • John Picacio
  • Sana Takeda

Best Semiprozine

  • Beneath Ceaseless Skies, editor-in-chief and publisher Scott H. Andrews
  • The Book Smugglers, edited by Ana Grilo and Thea James
  • Escape Pod, edited by Mur Lafferty, S.B. Divya, and Norm Sherman, with assistant editor Benjamin C. Kinney
  • Fireside Magazine, edited by Brian White and Julia Rios; managing editor Elsa Sjunneson-Henry; special feature editor Mikki Kendall; publisher & art director Pablo Defendini
  • Strange Horizons, edited by Kate Dollarhyde, Gautam Bhatia, A.J. Odasso, Lila Garrott, Heather McDougal, Ciro Faienza, Tahlia Day, Vanessa Rose Phin, and the Strange Horizons staff
  • Uncanny Magazine, edited by Lynne M. Thomas & Michael Damian Thomas, Michi Trota, and Julia Rios; podcast produced by Erika Ensign & Steven Schapansky

Best Fanzine

  • File 770, edited by Mike Glyer
  • Galactic Journey, edited by Gideon Marcus
  • Journey Planet, edited by Team Journey Planet
  • nerds of a feather, flock together, edited by The G, Vance Kotrla, and Joe Sherry
  • Rocket Stack Rank, edited by Greg Hullender and Eric Wong
  • SF Bluestocking, edited by Bridget McKinney

Best Fancast

  • The Coode Street Podcast, presented by Jonathan Strahan and Gary K. Wolfe
  • Ditch Diggers, presented by Mur Lafferty and Matt Wallace
  • Fangirl Happy Hour, presented by Ana Grilo and Renay Williams
  • Galactic Suburbia, presented by Alisa Krasnostein, Alexandra Pierce and Tansy Rayner Roberts; produced by Andrew Finch
  • Sword and Laser, presented by Veronica Belmont and Tom Merritt
  • Verity!, presented by Deborah Stanish, Erika Ensign, Katrina Griffiths, L.M. Myles, Lynne M. Thomas, and Tansy Rayner Roberts

Best Fan Writer

  • Some Bozo
  • Sarah Gailey
  • Mike Glyer
  • Foz Meadows
  • Charles Payseur
  • Bogi Takács

Best Fan Artist

  • Geneva Benton
  • Grace P. Fong
  • Maya Hahto
  • Likhain (M. Sereno)
  • Spring Schoenhuth
  • Steve Stiles

Best Series

  • The Books of the Raksura, by Martha Wells (Night Shade)
  • The Divine Cities, by Robert Jackson Bennett (Broadway)
  • InCryptid, by Seanan McGuire (DAW)
  • The Memoirs of Lady Trent, by Marie Brennan (Tor US / Titan UK)
  • The Stormlight Archive, by Brandon Sanderson (Tor US / Gollancz UK)
  • World of the Five Gods, by Lois McMaster Bujold (Harper Voyager / Spectrum Literary Agency)


2018 Associated Awards (not Hugos)

John W. Campbell Award for Best New Writer

  • Katherine Arden
  • Sarah Kuhn
  • Jeannette Ng
  • Vina Jie-Min Prasad
  • Rebecca Roanhorse
  • Rivers Solomon

The World Science Fiction Society (WSFS) Award for Best Young Adult Book

  • Akata Warrior, by Nnedi Okorafor (Viking)
  • The Art of Starving, by Sam J. Miller (HarperTeen)
  • The Book of Dust: La Belle Sauvage, by Philip Pullman (Knopf)
  • In Other Lands, by Sarah Rees Brennan (Big Mouth House)
  • A Skinful of Shadows, by Frances Hardinge (Macmillan UK / Harry N. Abrams US)
  • Summer in Orcus, written by T. Kingfisher (Ursula Vernon), illustrated by Lauren Henderson (Sofawolf Press)