2003 Hugo Nominees for Short Story

1 view
Skip to first unread message

JCM

unread,
Aug 4, 2003, 12:10:28 PM8/4/03
to
After reading all the nominees, here is my opinion about them. I won't
describe the plots to avoid spoilers:


* "Creation", by Jeffrey Ford (F&SF) -> A truly beautiful and touching
fantasy story.
* "Falling Onto Mars", by Geoffrey A. Landis (Analog) -> Very short,
but well written and enjoyable. The only problem is that the basic
premise, once you stop to think about it, is not very believable.
* "Hello, Said the Stick" by Michael Swanwick (Analog) -> Another very
short story, and I also enjoyed reading it. Again, the problem is the
basic premise. This time it is almost silly.
* "Lambing Season" by Molly Gloss (Asimov's) -> Not much happens in
this story. OK, something does happen, but the narrator never finds
out the details. However, the main character is very well drawn, and I
enjoyed reading it. Also, it is kind of appropriate that she never
finds out much about what's going on.
* "The Little Cat Laughed to See Such Sport" by Michael Swanwick
(Asimov's) -> Nice and funny, but I don't think it will be a strong
contender for best short story.


I don't vote for the Hugos, but if I did my vote would be something
like this:
1) "Creation", by Jeffrey Ford (F&SF)
2) "Lambing Season" by Molly Gloss (Asimov's)
3) "Falling Onto Mars", by Geoffrey A. Landis (Analog)
4) "The Little Cat Laughed to See Such Sport" by Michael Swanwick
(Asimov's)
5) "Hello, Said the Stick" by Michael Swanwick (Analog)
6) No award -> I liked all the stories, so this goes in the 6th place.


Julio

Htn963

unread,
Aug 4, 2003, 2:15:35 PM8/4/03
to
JCM wrote:

>* "Creation", by Jeffrey Ford (F&SF) -> A truly beautiful and touching
>fantasy story.
>* "Falling Onto Mars", by Geoffrey A. Landis (Analog) -> Very short,
>but well written and enjoyable. The only problem is that the basic
>premise, once you stop to think about it, is not very believable.
>* "Hello, Said the Stick" by Michael Swanwick (Analog) -> Another very
>short story, and I also enjoyed reading it. Again, the problem is the
>basic premise. This time it is almost silly.
>* "Lambing Season" by Molly Gloss (Asimov's) -> Not much happens in
>this story. OK, something does happen, but the narrator never finds
>out the details. However, the main character is very well drawn, and I
>enjoyed reading it. Also, it is kind of appropriate that she never
>finds out much about what's going on.
>* "The Little Cat Laughed to See Such Sport" by Michael Swanwick
>(Asimov's) -> Nice and funny, but I don't think it will be a strong
>contender for best short story.

Swanwick has more than one nominations for the same award category this
year? Have there been other such occurrences in the Hugo (or Nebula?)
(Calling Nicholas Whyte...or anyone else who like digging into this sort of
trivia.)
--
Ht

|Any man's death diminishes me, because I am involved in mankind; and therefore
never send to know for whom the bell tolls; it tolls for thee.
--John Donne, "Devotions Upon Emergent Occasions"|

Richard Horton

unread,
Aug 4, 2003, 9:26:58 PM8/4/03
to
On 4 Aug 2003 09:10:28 -0700, jcm...@hotmail.com (JCM) wrote:

>I don't vote for the Hugos, but if I did my vote would be something
>like this:
>1) "Creation", by Jeffrey Ford (F&SF)
>2) "Lambing Season" by Molly Gloss (Asimov's)
>3) "Falling Onto Mars", by Geoffrey A. Landis (Analog)
>4) "The Little Cat Laughed to See Such Sport" by Michael Swanwick
>(Asimov's)
>5) "Hello, Said the Stick" by Michael Swanwick (Analog)
>6) No award -> I liked all the stories, so this goes in the 6th place.
>

Oddly enough, your proposed ballot is identical to my actual ballot!

--
Rich Horton | Stable Email: mailto://richard...@sff.net
Home Page: http://www.sff.net/people/richard.horton
Also visit SF Site (http://www.sfsite.com) and Tangent Online (http://www.tangentonline.com)

Richard Horton

unread,
Aug 4, 2003, 10:01:57 PM8/4/03
to
On 04 Aug 2003 18:15:35 GMT, htn...@cs.com (Htn963) wrote:

> Swanwick has more than one nominations for the same award category this
>year? Have there been other such occurrences in the Hugo (or Nebula?)
>(Calling Nicholas Whyte...or anyone else who like digging into this sort of
>trivia.)

I dug into this when the nominations first came out, intrigued as I
was by Swanwick's multiple nominations. Unfortunately I can't dig up
a copy of what I found out.

It has certainly happened -- just a couple of years ago Swanwick
himself had THREE short stories nominated (and one of them won!). I
think he's also had two on at least one other occasion.

If memory serves (though if mine did it would double fault), Ellison
had multiple noms at least once, and Varley, and maybe Le Guin...
I'll try to track down the research I did, or maybe I'll do it all
again.

Robert Sneddon

unread,
Aug 5, 2003, 3:38:18 AM8/5/03
to
In article <peEXa.686$AB2...@newssvr16.news.prodigy.com>, Richard
Horton <rrho...@prodigy.net> writes

>
>If memory serves (though if mine did it would double fault), Ellison
>had multiple noms at least once, and Varley, and maybe Le Guin...
>I'll try to track down the research I did, or maybe I'll do it all
>again.

In '01 two people won two Hugos each -- Bob Eggleton won Best Related
Book (shared with a co-author) and Best Professional Artist, and Dave
Langford won Best Fan Writer and Best Short Story.

I think, in the last case, this was the first time ever that someone
had won a Hugo in the pro and fan writing categories simultaneously.
Terry Carr had won Hugos for Editor and Fanzine previously but not in
the same year.

http://isfdb.tamu.edu/cgi-bin/ea.cgi?Terry_Carr
--
Email me via nojay (at) nojay (dot) fsnet (dot) co (dot) uk
This address no longer accepts HTML posts.

Robert Sneddon

Nicholas Whyte

unread,
Aug 5, 2003, 1:49:50 PM8/5/03
to
htn...@cs.com (Htn963) wrote in message news:<20030804141535...@mb-m10.news.cs.com>...

> Swanwick has more than one nominations for the same award category this
> year? Have there been other such occurrences in the Hugo (or Nebula?)
> (Calling Nicholas Whyte...or anyone else who like digging into this sort of
> trivia.)

Not at all unusual, as others have pointed out.

Michael Swanwick specialises in the short story category. He had two
short story nominations for the 2000 Hugos, one of which, "Scherzo
with Tyrannosaur", won. He had three short story nominations the
previous year, of which "The Very Pulse of the Machine" won. He had
two nominations for the 2000 Nebula for short story, neither of which
won.

But he's not the only one. Ursula Le Guin had two novellas on the Hugo
shortlist for 1996 and 1995; Nancy Kress had two in 1992 (of which
"Beggars in Spain" won); Mike Resnick had two short stories on the
ballot that year as well. I haven't gone back further but I expect
there are several more.

For obvious reasons it's less likely to happen in the longer
categories. The only time it has ever happened for either award in the
novel category was when Robert Silverberg's _Dying Inside_ and _The
Book of Skulls_ were both shortlisted for the 1973 Nebula. _Dying
Inside_ and _A Time of Changes_ were originally both shortlisted for
the Best Novel Hugo in 1972, but he withdrew one to try and help the
chances of the other. It didn't work.

The 18 novels on the 1976 Nebula shortlist were by 19 different
authors (including _The Mote in God's Eye_ by Niven & Pournelle).

Nicholas

Richard Horton

unread,
Aug 5, 2003, 10:52:58 PM8/5/03
to
On 5 Aug 2003 10:49:50 -0700, nichol...@hotmail.com (Nicholas
Whyte) wrote:

>Not at all unusual, as others have pointed out.
>
>Michael Swanwick specialises in the short story category. He had two
>short story nominations for the 2000 Hugos, one of which, "Scherzo
>with Tyrannosaur", won. He had three short story nominations the
>previous year, of which "The Very Pulse of the Machine" won. He had
>two nominations for the 2000 Nebula for short story, neither of which
>won.
>
>But he's not the only one. Ursula Le Guin had two novellas on the Hugo
>shortlist for 1996 and 1995; Nancy Kress had two in 1992 (of which
>"Beggars in Spain" won); Mike Resnick had two short stories on the
>ballot that year as well. I haven't gone back further but I expect
>there are several more.
>

A few more, all on the Hugo ballot, all "award dates" (i.e. the
stories were a year earlier):

In 1994 Le Guin had two novelettes on the ballot ("The Matter of
Seggri" and "Solitude"), neither won.

In 1998, Kim Stanley Robinson had two novellas on the ballot ("The
Blind Geometer", "Mother Goddess of the World"), neither won.

In 1981, George R. R. Martin had two novellas on the ballot, albeit
one a collaboration ("Nightflyers", and "One-Wing" with Lisa Tuttle
(part of _Windhaven_), neither winning.

Also in 1981, Jeff Duntemann had two short stories on the ballot
("Cold Hands" and "Guardian"). Neither won, and I recall that this
ballot was a bit controversial.

(Speaking of controversy from 1981, I was shocked to be reminded that
Gordon Dickson's indifferent novelette "The Cloak and the Staff" beat
out Michael Shea's utterly brilliant "The Autopsy" for the Hugo. One
of the most regrettable awards ever. (Dickson also won for novella
that year, again beating out a superior SF horror story, Martin's
"Nightflyers", plus Disch's fine "The Brave Little Toaster", with
"Lost Dorsai".)

In 1977, John Varley had two novelettes on the ballot, "Gotta Sing,
Gotta Dance" and "The Phantom of Kansas", neither winning.

In 1974 Michael Bishop had two novellas nominated, "Death and
Designation Among the Asadi" and "The White Otters of Childhood",
again neither winning. (Gosh those were good! As was the winner to
be sure (Tiptree's "The Girl Who Was Plugged In").)

In 1971 Fritz Leiber had two novellas nominated, "Ill Met in Lankhmar"
and "The Snow Women" -- he withdrew the nomination for the latter, and
"Ill Met in Lankhmar" won.

In 1967, unusually, Roger Zelazny and Charles L. Harness EACH had two
"novelettes" nominated. ("For a Breath I Tarry" and "This Moment of
the Storm" for Zelanzy; "The Alchemist" and "An Ornament to His
Profession" for Harness.) It should be noted, though, that there were
9 nominations in that category (which actually included what we would
now call novelettes and novellas) that year.

And finally, in the first year that nominations were listed, 1959, of
the 10 (!) short story nominations, two were for the late C. M.
Kornbluth: "Theory of Rocketry" and "The Advent on Channel Twelve".

One more thing, in this case pertaining to the same "work" winning
multiple awards in different forms. Many people know that Daniel
Keyes's "Flowers for Algernon" won a 1960 Hugo for Best Short Fiction,
and tied for the 1967 Nebula for Best Novel (and was nominated for a
Hugo for Best Novel). Some know that the movie version, CHARLY, lost
out to 2001 for the 1969 Dramatic Presentation Hugo. But how many
know that there was also a TV or radio (I'm not sure myself which)
version, "The Two Worlds of Charlie Gordon", in 1961, which was also
nominated for the 1962 Dramatic Presentation Hugo. (The Twilight Zone
won the award.) I suspect that is the record for the most different
versions of the same story to be nominated for a Hugo.

>For obvious reasons it's less likely to happen in the longer
>categories. The only time it has ever happened for either award in the
>novel category was when Robert Silverberg's _Dying Inside_ and _The
>Book of Skulls_ were both shortlisted for the 1973 Nebula. _Dying
>Inside_ and _A Time of Changes_ were originally both shortlisted for
>the Best Novel Hugo in 1972, but he withdrew one to try and help the
>chances of the other. It didn't work.

If Hugo voting was the same in 1972 as it is now, withdrawing one
should make no difference to the fortunes of the other. (Assuming
voters truly vote preferences -- I acknowledge that some might say
"Silverberg deserves an award" and vote for one or the other, but not
rank the second one where it "deserves" with the idea that they've
already voted for Silverberg.)

(Curiously, though _Dying Inside_ didn't win the Nebula, it did get a
(really silly, in my opinion) Special Award, for good writing.)

Here's something I wrote on the more general subject of multiple
nominations in different categories, after seeing Swanwick's Four
Count 'em Four nominations this year:

Swanwick has won three of the last four Best Short Story Hugos. He
has been nominated each of the last 5 years (and 7 of the last 8). He
has had no less than 9 Short Stories on the ballot in the last 5
years, counting this year.

This year he has 4 separate stories on the ballot. That is, as far as
I can tell, a record. However, two other people have been nominated
four times in a single year: Harlan Ellison in 1968 was nominated for
two different stories, for a Star Trek episode, and for Best Fan
Writer (he withdrew this last nomination). Mike Resnick was nominated
in 1995 for three different stories, and as Best Professional Editor.

The following writers have been nominated for three different stories
in a single year:
Robert Silverberg -- three times (1970, 1973, 1975)
Mike Resnick -- twice (1995, 2001)
Orson Scott Card (1990)
Samuel R. Delany (1968)
Ursula K. Le Guin (1995)
Larry Niven (1976)
Bruce Sterling (1999)
Connie Willis (1992)
Roger Zelazny (1967)
C. M. Kornbluth (1959)
and Swanwick again (1999, all short stories, and he won, too)

John Varley had exactly two stories nominated for six years in a row,
from 1977 through 1982.

David Dyer-Bennet

unread,
Aug 5, 2003, 11:18:13 PM8/5/03
to
nichol...@hotmail.com (Nicholas Whyte) writes:

> htn...@cs.com (Htn963) wrote in message news:<20030804141535...@mb-m10.news.cs.com>...
> > Swanwick has more than one nominations for the same award category this
> > year? Have there been other such occurrences in the Hugo (or Nebula?)
> > (Calling Nicholas Whyte...or anyone else who like digging into this sort of
> > trivia.)
>
> Not at all unusual, as others have pointed out.
>
> Michael Swanwick specialises in the short story category. He had two
> short story nominations for the 2000 Hugos, one of which, "Scherzo
> with Tyrannosaur", won. He had three short story nominations the
> previous year, of which "The Very Pulse of the Machine" won. He had
> two nominations for the 2000 Nebula for short story, neither of which
> won.
>
> But he's not the only one. Ursula Le Guin had two novellas on the Hugo
> shortlist for 1996 and 1995; Nancy Kress had two in 1992 (of which
> "Beggars in Spain" won); Mike Resnick had two short stories on the
> ballot that year as well. I haven't gone back further but I expect
> there are several more.

In 1981, Gordy Dickson *won* the Hugo for both novella ("Lost Dorsai")
and novelette ("The Cloak and the Staff"). Just a quick scan of that
year also shows multiple nominated works for George R.R. Martin,
Robert Silverberg, Jeff Duntemann, Richard E. Geis, Andrew I. Porter,
and Vincent Di Fate.

Picking another Hugo year at random, 1973, I find the following people
appearing on the ballot multiple times: Robert Silverberg (3 times),
Frederik Pohl, James Tiptree Jr., Kurt Vonnegut Jr., Terry Carr, Susan
Wood Glickson, and Charles N. Brown.

Nope, doesn't look like multiple nominations are rare at all.

> For obvious reasons it's less likely to happen in the longer
> categories. The only time it has ever happened for either award in the
> novel category was when Robert Silverberg's _Dying Inside_ and _The
> Book of Skulls_ were both shortlisted for the 1973 Nebula. _Dying
> Inside_ and _A Time of Changes_ were originally both shortlisted for
> the Best Novel Hugo in 1972, but he withdrew one to try and help the
> chances of the other. It didn't work.

Actually, _Dying Inside_ and _The Book of Skulls_ both show as on the
1973 Hugo ballot (I picked 73 before I noticed you'd used the 73
nebulas, honest). (Beaten out by Asimov's _The Gods Themselves_).
--
David Dyer-Bennet, <dd...@dd-b.net>, <www.dd-b.net/dd-b/>
RKBA: <noguns-nomoney.com> <www.dd-b.net/carry/>
Photos: <dd-b.lighthunters.net> Snapshots: <www.dd-b.net/dd-b/SnapshotAlbum/>
Dragaera mailing lists: <dragaera.info/>

Lawrence Watt-Evans

unread,
Aug 6, 2003, 1:09:15 AM8/6/03
to
On Wed, 06 Aug 2003 02:52:58 GMT, Richard Horton
<rrho...@prodigy.net> wrote:

>(Speaking of controversy from 1981, I was shocked to be reminded that
>Gordon Dickson's indifferent novelette "The Cloak and the Staff" beat
>out Michael Shea's utterly brilliant "The Autopsy" for the Hugo. One
>of the most regrettable awards ever.

"The Autopsy" was much too creepy for most SF readers, and Gordon
Dickson was beloved of fandom.


Reply all
Reply to author
Forward
0 new messages