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An Amusing Juxtaposition About Awards

Two things that popped up in the past week...

Over on Futurismic, Adam Roberts has posted an essay on why he considers science fiction awards to be rubbish.

Meanwhile, the good people at The Chronic Rift podcast (on which I'll be appearing in February) are reminding their listeners that today is the last day to vote in their 2009 Roundtable Awards.

I'm amused because both of these things popped onto my radar at pretty much the same time.

Comments

I would venture to agree with Adam. Of course, I would also venture to say that too many people in the genre obsess over awards granted by a small group of insiders rather than obsessing over, say, entertaining and informing people with their work, but that's a whole other rant....
There's an interesting response at http://file770.com/?p=824 .

By the way, nice icon. :-)
The response is interesting, although it falls into the all too common geek knee-jerk response of bickering over the internal facts instead of dealing with the overall argument. I do like this response:

I really appreciate the deconstruction of the argument, but really, all you had to say was:

DUDE: (SF) awards are CELEBRATORY not PREDICTIVE.


LOL. That sums it up much better.

And WWBWD is a guideline of life, to be sure. ;)
I'd be more likely to be impressed by his argument if he'd done even the minimal amount of fact-checking needed to count "often-garlanded" Mack Reynolds's awards. (Reynolds has exactly as many Hugos and Nebulas as I do, and only one more Hugo nomination.)

See File 770 for more.
My problem with Adam's rant is that he seems only half serious, as though in large part he's being provocative to stimulate discussion rather than arguing an earnestly held position. Sure you can get a different perspective from things a few decades later, but revivals of authors' works don't happen without human intervention, and some of the same people who rush to judgment on what the best works of last year were also are architects of the career revivals of people like Philip K. Dick.
I like Steve Davidson's reply to Mike Glyer in the File 770 post:

"DUDE: (SF) awards are CELEBRATORY not PREDICTIVE."

And I'll note that Adam's issues can come up even worse when awards are granted historically. If I recall correctly, some Retro-Hugos were awarded that clearly were not meant for the work done by the individual in that year, but because the individual was now known for a much greater body of work.
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