Amazing! Seriously, I’m flummoxed, befuddled, and confusticated. Voting for the Hugos now takes more time than confirming I am who I say I am when I attempt to settle a bill online with a public utility. It is just possible that this state of affairs may drive me to turn my house inside out. A la Wonko’s Asylum style.
“Hold stick near centre of its length. Moisten pointed end in mouth. Insert in tooth space, blunt end next to gum. Use gentle in-out motion.” –Douglas Adams, “So Long and Thanks for all the Fish”
Before I began to write this morning I decided it would be right and proper to spend a little time getting caught up on the awards season in general, and Hugo nominations debate in particular. Google has been trying to tell me that this is important to me by coyly inserting news stories about the Annual Puppies Cluster Event into my news feed. Up until this morning, I have successfully skimmed those headlines thereby minimizing any impact to my writing schedule.
However, like the dutiful dimwit I sometimes play in movies, this morning I cracked open that mess fully expecting I could wade through a seemingly boundless mire of accusations and counter-accusations and come to a shore of resolution on its far side. Alas, the bog swallowed me, body and soul.
I’ve been encouraged to vote for stories I did enjoy by authors I respect. Most notably in the Best Novel category. John Scalzi has successfully made the argument that nominees, specifically Neal Stephenson’s Seveneves: A Novel, isn’t a Puppies success story.
Despite assurances such as these, I still question what a vote for an already-successful-slated-author means for the long term prospects of the Puppies movement. Specifically, I want to avoid the situation in which I’m adding fuel to their blaze — and I understand that the Puppies will claim “victory” regardless of my voting — so apparently the whole thing is a Catch-22.
The dilemma remains, how can I participate in this award without contributing to that aspect of it?
I’ve now spent a good hour of my writing time noodling over the question when I knew the answer to before I began.