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Australian philosopher, literary critic, legal scholar, and professional writer. Based in Newcastle, NSW. My latest books are THE TYRANNY OF OPINION: CONFORMITY AND THE FUTURE OF LIBERALISM (2019); AT THE DAWN OF A GREAT TRANSITION: THE QUESTION OF RADICAL ENHANCEMENT (2021); and HOW WE BECAME POST-LIBERAL: THE RISE AND FALL OF TOLERATION (2024).

Sunday, June 14, 2015

Concluding comments on "Best novelette" category - Hugo Awards voting 2015

The nominated works in this category are (in no particular order):

1. "Ashes to Ashes, Dust to Dust, Earth to Alluvium" by Gray Rinehart (which I reviewed briefly here).

2. "Championship B'tok" by Edward M. Lerner

3. "The Triple Sun: A Golden Age Tale" by Rajnar Vajra (I reviewed this and the Lerner story here; I thought Vajra's story was the stronger of the two).

4. "The Journeyman: In the Stone House" by Michael F. Flynn (one of the best-written of the nominated stories; perhaps my number two choice, though again with the feel of being an episode in something larger).

5. "The Day the World Turned Upside Down" by Thomas Olde Heuvelt.

And the winner is...

well, I don't know who will win this award. I will not be voting "no award" ahead of any of them. However, the standout is Heuvelt's surrealistic fantasy story, "The Day the World Turned Upside Down". This has enormous energy, wit, and emotional kick. It can be seen as one long metaphor for the shock and pain of a breakup. It would be a worthy winner in any year, and I recommend that you read it, if you have access to the Voter Packet, and give it serious consideration.

It's also the only story of the five that was not on the Sad Puppies slate. Make of that what you will - it did not influence my choice, since I really do think it's a much stronger, more distinguished, story than any of the others. But I'm sure, in current circumstances when assuming good faith is fairly uncommon, there'll be people who won't believe me about that.

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