The Extrahuman Union

On the Hugos: The Good, the Bad, and the Awful Trolls from Hell

Posted on: April 22, 2014

Hugo nominations are out, and there’s some good stuff, some awesome stuff, and some excruciatingly awful crap.

But before we get there, the good: holy shit there are some amazing folks being nominated. The Book Smugglers got nominated for Best Fanzine, as did A Dribble of Ink. Skiffy and Fanty was nominated for Best Fancast. The list for Best Fan Writer has Liz Bourke, Kameron Hurley, and Foz Meadows on it. ANCILLARY JUSTICE is up for Best Novel. And Benjanun Sriduangkaew got nominated for the Campbell!

YAY.

The awesome: QUEERS DIG TIME LORDS got nominated for Best Related Work. Something I’m actually in! This is very exciting.

Ahem.

And then there’s the bad stuff.

sigh

Okay, look. Everyone complains about the Hugos. It’s a fan rite-of-passage, it’s something that happens every year because certain things get on and other things don’t. Everyone has opinions. In those cases the right thing to do is usually to shrug, admit the Hugos are flawed, celebrate the winners, and work to see that things get better next year.

This isn’t that.

This is about what I and a lot of other people felt when we saw a novelette by Vox Day and a novel by Larry Correia make it on to the ballot, after a campaign to get voters to do just that. This is the about the sense that we are being maliciously provoked by a bloc of ultraconservative fans who hate that the genre isn’t all about them anymore.

This is about the horrible realization that they are using the Hugos to troll us, and enjoying themselves immensely while doing it.

And it’s also about the fact that I didn’t want to say anything about it at first.

Okay. I was bullied a lot as a kid. I know what it looks like, and what it feels like. I know what’s it’s like when someone writes something hurtful on a poster you spent all weekend making, or takes a picture of you just so they can laugh at it later. I know how it feels when someone takes something you love and uses it against you. And that is sort of how this feels.

I didn’t want any part of it. Not at first. My instinct is always to hide, hope they don’t see me, hope they go away.

But then I read what Natalie Luhrs had to say about standing up.

I used to be afraid to speak. Instead, I read. That is how I participated in the community. I still read.

But I am no longer afraid to speak.

She said that despite having tons of miserable trolls come into her space and try to shut her up.

And it’s funny, because I do speak, on lots of issues, every week in my political column. But even there I can feel myself trying to stay on this side of it, trying to stay “safe.” I’ve discovered, though, that even when I do that there will be trolls who want to shut me up.

If I stay safe or stay silent then the other voices get to keep the entire field. And that’s not right.

So. What’s going on here is malicious. Nobody should use the Hugos to make not just a political point, but to actually try to upset other parts of fandom. And there is nothing that’s going to make me believe that’s not what this is.

I don’t particularly care to read their works and judge them on the merits. I also don’t care to engage with these trolls.

But I do care to speak. I may not be much of a deal in the SFF world, but I have my tiny little voice and I shall use it.

19 Responses to "On the Hugos: The Good, the Bad, and the Awful Trolls from Hell"

[…] On the Hugos: The Good, the Bad, and the Awful Trolls from Hell (Susan Jane Bigelow) […]

“This is the about the sense that we are being maliciously provoked by a bloc of ultraconservative fans who hate that the genre isn’t all about them anymore.”

I’ll go further and say that it’s a bloc who hate the fact that the genre has never really been about them, and might now be just realising that they not only have lost the fight, but at no point ever really had a shot of winning it (whatever shape that would have taken: banning women from the awards?). And they really don’t like that. And if they think they’re going to get very far by trying to fight that fight in the UK of all places, where they’d consider even our most conservative SF authors to be liberal hippies, they’re really not paying attention.

“I’ll go further and say that it’s a bloc who hate the fact that the genre has never really been about them, and might now be just realising that they not only have lost the fight, but at no point ever really had a shot of winning it ”

Larry Correia’s Monster Hunter Nemesis #853 in paid Kindle store.
John C. Wright’s City Beyond Time #3,344 in paid Kindle store.
John Scalzi’s Redshirts #5,326 in paid Kindle store.
Susan Jane Bigelow’s Daughter Star #657,633 in paid Kindle store.

Yup, these are strictly marginal figures who have no influence. It’s too bad they just don’t realize that yet.

You are fun, keep posting.

Well, I would, but frankly, you’re uninteresting. You are apparently unwilling to actually defend your ideas, instead assuming a smug leftist superiority. I can only assume that you recognize either your gross intellectual deficiencies or the irreconcilable contradictions in the ideas you espouse.

If you are actually willing to engage in discussion, that’s great, let me know. But so far, meh, you’re just another leftist claiming a brilliancy that is not at all in evidence.

Oops, I almost forgot, Orson Scott Card’s Earth Awakens #812 in Kindle store. Orson Scott Card’s Ender’s Game #392 in Kindle store after being out for almost 30 years now.

Hopefully these horrible cismale heteronormative fascists will soon realize how completely irrelevant they are.

Here’s what I do: When I go into a Barnes and Noble, I sneak these right-wing fascist books with me in the loo. Then I drop them in the toilet. I would say I’ve done this about 50 times in the last month. I am sure the B&N employees keep wondering why they find soaked destroyed “Monster Hunter” books in their bathrooms! But we need to take the fight to the streets and take these nazis down. By any means necessary. These books are right wing trash and need to be destroyed.

I am completely fooled by you, wow

[…] a racist rape apologist and the fact he’s on the ballot makes me sad (here are some posts if you’re not familiar with the background). There’s also some controversy over Wheel […]

[…] Susan Jane Bigelow points out that Vox Day, Larry Correia and their ilk are actively trying to malic… the glittering hoo-has, special snowflake, pink SF crowd, social justice warriors or whatever cutesy name they have come up with this week and that nobody has to engage with them or read their work. […]

“I don’t particularly care to read their works and judge them on the merits.”

Well, therin lies the problem doesn’t it? If you refuse to judge a work or an artist on their merits (or lack of same), what are you judging them on?

That a question, not a condemnation incidentally.

I went over to Correia’s place and read his whole, long, agonizingly complete tale of what he did and why he did it. In my estimation he’s not telling people to shut up. He’s predicting his mere inclusion on the ballot will cause paroxysms of hate among the Left, who will scream for his head and demand he be silenced. Every prediction he made has come to pass, wouldn’t you say?

Now interestingly, even though I am now a huge old silver-back, once upon a time I was a small boy with more than a touch of Aspergers and like you I was bullied mercilessly.

Viewed through that lens, Correia is doing what I used to do back in the day. He’s standing up and daring them to have a go.

Because that’s what I learned as a small boy. You don’t hide from bullies. You stand up to them.

My question is, why do you need these guys to shut up and go away so bad? If they’re evil and wrong, they’ll flame out quick enough from their own evil wrongness don’t you think?

I did outline the reasons why I’m not reading them in the article.

Also–on the bullying front. It seems like sometimes there’s this situation where it’s hard to tell at first glance who is the “bully” and who is not, if everyone is angry. But when that happens, it’s good to ask who holds the power. Who is a member of a more powerful group? Who has, say, friends who will write columns in USA Today defending you?

And who is a bunch of people who have historically been marginalized, ignored, and worse?

Think about that, and you may have the answers to all your questions. Thank you for your comment!

Hi Susan. :)

I wouldn’t characterize the conservative side of this bun fight as “angry”. I think “gleeful” is closer. Because when asking who holds the power, at the Hugos there’s no question that Correia and company are David and the Social Justice Warriors are Goliath.

And while the Sad Puppies farce did get a mention by Glen Reynolds in USA Today, Correia got smeared in The Guardian as well. Everybody has friends, it seems.

As a member of a group that was “historically marginalized, ignored and worse” (the Scots), I find that “who’s got the power?” argument to be utterly empty. My people moved on from the Highland Clearances and invented pretty much the entire modern world. If there’s a product or a service that you use every single day, chances are better than 75% it was invented by a Scotsman. (I have this theory that Aspys are responsible for creating and maintaining Western Civilization, as well. Weirdos though we may be. Because Asperger’s is amazingly common in Scots, who invented -everything-.)

So really, “who’s got the power?” is more of a “who’s got the power this week?” proposition. All I know is that -I- don’t have the power. I do what I’m going to do without even considering it. Some call that White Privilege, I call it getting up in the morning.

You said: “So. What’s going on here is malicious. Nobody should use the Hugos to make not just a political point, but to actually try to upset other parts of fandom. And there is nothing that’s going to make me believe that’s not what this is.”

There is a remarkable thing here. The Left side of the argument is demanding the Right side shut up and be purged, while the Right side is pointing, laughing and saying “See? Toldja they’d demand we shut up and be purged!”

Is it malicious to demonstrate (by way of a -joke- incidentally) that some group hates your guts and is trying as hard as they can to silence and exclude you… by making them silence and exclude you? Really?

Speaking as a Purge-ee as it were, I assure you I have no intention of making anybody shut up, or even asking anyone to shut up. I’m really not even asking anyone to listen to what I have to say you know, delete key is still there.

I’m just not going to shut up, is all.

Currently in England you can go to jail for that. In my native Canada you can be hauled before a Human Rights Commission and fined for it. Seems over the top, right?

Do we really want that kind of coercion widely used in public life? Or should we maybe consider that censorship and purges are the tools of evil? As has been amply demonstrated even just in my lifetime, and is being demonstrated -again- in Ukraine this week.

So please, don’t think of me as an angry troll who’s trying to crush your self expression. Think of me more as an angry troll the size of a polar bear who’s happy off by himself laying waste to the forest in his own inimitable style, and who it would be a real waste of time trying to coerce into being a bunny.

You can be the bunny. I’m cool with it. ~:)

“I don’t particularly care to read their works and judge them on the merits. ”

My, how very open-minded you are. That’s what I love most about leftists. They are so very wonderfully open-minded. You present them with an idea they’re uncomfortable with, and they carefully take the time to examine all of the facts to determine whether or not it is true. I have never once seen a leftist throw out a brainless, knee-jerk reaction to dismiss something that troubles them.

So since you’re willing to completely damn a work without reading it simply because of the author’s political views, please tell me what you think of the books of Marion Zimmer Bradley, Samuel Delany, and Walter Breen. I’m very curious.

Don’t waste your time, Zak.

Leftists have a moral defect which prevents them from admitting their hypocrisy. The more obvious the hypocrisy, the louder and more angry they become. Example: the hysteria over the Hugos.

I wonder if the library where Ms.Bigelow works has books by Delany, Bradley and Breen in it?

For that matter, I wonder if the patrons of that library know about the kinds of authors that Ms. Bigelow is foisting on them?

…please tell me what you think of the books of Marion Zimmer Bradley, Samuel Delany, and Walter Breen. I’m very curious.

As am I. Please tell us, Susan.

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