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Announcing the Serious Kitten Speculative Fiction Awards. Post your nominations below!

Srs kitten r srs about awards.
Srs kitten r srs about awards.


W
ell, it looks like the Hugo Awards are pretty much busted this year.

So it occurred to me: there are a lot of very sharp, very well-informed SF/fantasy fans that read this blog (and at least one award-winning SF author that I know of). So why not do a little awarding of our own?

And so I would like to welcome you to the First Annual We Hunted The Mammoth Serious Kitten Awards.

Nominate your favorites in the categories below — and if there are any more categories you think I should add, suggest them. Every category with at least 5 nominees will be voted on in a future post; the rest will be dropped.

Use your best judgment when choosing the right category for your nominations. Speculative fiction, science fiction, fantasy, horror, all good. EBooks, self-published books, all fine. I’ll make other rules/clarifications/pronouncements as necessary.

The only thing that isn’t fine: No nominations for anyone or any work included in the Sad Puppies or Rabid Puppies Hugo slates, except in the “worst” categories, if you think they deserve it. The point is to highlight work that might otherwise get overlooked because of the Sad/Rabid Puppies ballot-stuffing.

The categories:

  • Best Novel (published in 2014)
  • Best Novella  (published in 2014)
  • Best Short Story  (published in 2014)
  • Best SF-related Nonfiction Book (published in 2014)
  • Best Comic/Graphic Novel  (published in 2014)
  • Best Webcomic (ongoing, but has to have appeared in 2014)
  • Best SF site (ongoing, but had to exist in 2014)
  • Best SF blog (ongoing, but had to exist in 2014)
  • Best SF movie (released or or shown on television in 2014, i.e. SyFy movies count)
  • Best SF TV series (for episodes from 2014)
  • Best SF podcast/Youtube channel (ongoing, had to exist in 2014)
  • Best SF Twitterer (ongoing, but had to be on Twitter in2o14)
  • Coolest SF person (ongoing, but had to be cool in 2014)
  • Biggest SF asshole (ongoing, but had to be an asshole in 2014. Can include those associated with Sad Puppies and/or Rabid Puppies)
  • Worst SF novel
  • Worst SF movie
  • Worst SF TV series

.NEW CATEGORY: Best SF game

Have at it! Make sure you specify what category your nomination should be in! The winners will win … something!

EDIT: Added a category.

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gilshalos
5 years ago

Ooh! Gaiman!
I first read something of his when I read Good Omens, and thought ‘That was dark for PTerry’. Then I read Sandman and though ‘oh! Good Omens was light for Gaiman!’ 🙂

Sheila Crosby
5 years ago

Best Short Story : When it Ends, He Catches Her

Simeon Beresford
5 years ago

I would love to see a best multi volume work award. where having any volume published in 1914 qualifies a series. I feel series lose out regularly in the Hugos. because the books sans backstory simply do nor work as stand alone novels.

Novelette The Litany of Earth,” by Ruthanna Emrys

Biggest SF asshole: Vox Day, Eternally.
the others are just pratts.

Best Novel Ancillary Sword. No matter how good volume three is the weight of back story will probably stop it working as a stand alone But this volume is blasting on all cylinders.

Zolnier
Zolnier
5 years ago

How are we defining sci fi blog? Because http://somethingshortandsnappy.blogspot.ca/ has a very good series deconstructing the Ender novels.

proxieme
proxieme
5 years ago

Ohh, yes to Korra if it qualifies.

And I know that it’s not everyone’s favorite, but Interstellar blew me away (for feature film).

Dragonage: Inquisition’s pert dern cool as well (for vidya).

Lifetime Achievement (posthumous): Sir Pterry.
(I’m seriously slowly buying all of the Discworld novels in paperback so they can be strewn around the house for easy access so our kiddos trip across them when they’re ready.)

proxieme
proxieme
5 years ago

Penny – Butcher definitely seems like he & his work don’t deserve to be lumped in with the puppies but was just grabbed by them because he’s a straight (I’m assuming), CIS, white dude who apparently enjoys weapons and martial arts.

He also (just judging by his work and its sympathetic portrayels and characters – I can’t say I’ve heard the guy speak or anything) seems to be generally an ally for LGTBQ people, soooo…

proxieme
proxieme
5 years ago

And if Murph, the Valkryies, Molly, and even Charity (in her own way) don’t qualify as strong female characters, I don’t know what to say.

proxieme
proxieme
5 years ago

Por – Oh, Constantine, we hardly knew thee.

sunnysombrera
5 years ago

Seconding Machine Gun Girl in that I’m bookmarking this page for later reference.

Odd question: does anyone have any SF recommendations that aren’t actually high quality? Because I don’t know why but I have a habit of really liking SF stuff that many people don’t. For example the films Tron: Legacy and The Island, and the book Soul Corporation by Robert Collins. Low ratings by the critics and Rotten Tomatoes but…I just can’t say they’re bad. Not great either, but something in them appeals to me.

Mewens
Mewens
5 years ago

@Sunny:

“Tron: Legacy” is the best Daft Punk music video I’ve ever watched. Hell, I’ll listen to the soundtrack at work now and again, between Neil Young’s “Out of the Blue” and Gang Gang Dance’s “Egowar.”

katz
5 years ago

Looks like everyone has already nominated the things I was planning to nominate. I applaud you for your taste. Someone must have already mentioned Marvel’s Agent Carter for TV show, right?

And I’ll nominate Dan Koboldt’s series Science in Sci-Fi, Fact in Fantasy for best blog. http://dankoboldt.com/science-in-scifi/

katz
5 years ago

Oh, and for Twitter, @microsff.

RaikonL
RaikonL
5 years ago

Best SF Game: Revolution 60
Best SF Twitterer: Veerender Jubbal
Biggest SF Asshole: Vox Day

Best SF Movie: Sharknado 2

Melyanna
5 years ago

I am not up to speed with the latest sci-fi books, but I can for sure nominate John Scalzi as the coolest SF person ever.

Melyanna
5 years ago

Oh, and I forgot to vote for the Biggest SF asshole: Vox Day

Lydy Nickerson
Lydy Nickerson
5 years ago

Best novel: _My Real Children_ by Jo Walton. As with all her other books, it’s not like any of her other books. It’s genuinely wonderful, and will make you cry.

sunnysombrera
5 years ago

Just a heads up.

This happened: http://www.bbc.co.uk/news/uk-england-32320595

I’m wondering if the MRM are going to use this to further argue that women are evil succubi BUT both the victim and perps were those “brown people” the MRAs have so much racist contempt for.

Let’s keep an eye on the manosphere and see what happens. My bet is that their racism will outdo their misogyny…

sunnysombrera
5 years ago

And I’ve just realised I should have posted that in a different thread. Sorry for the derail. David if you want to delete that go ahead.

Lydy Nickerson
Lydy Nickerson
5 years ago

Coolest SF Person: Bruce Schneier for managing a genuinely interesting and careful discussion of possible rule changes to the Hugos over on the blog Making Light.

(Also, I know Bruce in real life, and he’s a very nice person, fun to talk to, smart, and insightful on a wide range of topics.)

Cyclohexane
Cyclohexane
5 years ago

Delurking to promote some of my favorites:

Best novel:
-Stranger, by Sherwood Smith and Rachel Manija Brown. Postapocalyptic SF, but not dystopian: it’s rather uplifting despite despite dealing with some rather serious topics. It’s YA, but manages to avoid most of the clichés (about both YA and postapocalyptic novels). Very diverse cast of characters, too. It’s however not particulary “hard” SF, there’s superpowers and weird biology which are explained as mutations in a way that doesn’t actually make a lot of sense…
The sequel, Hostage, came out this year.
-Dust and Light: A Sanctuary Novel, by Carol Berg. More of a “regular” fantasy novel, but Berg’s worldbuilding is just fantastic.
-Also seconding the recommendation for The Goblin Emperor.

Best webcomic:
Seconding Unsounded and Stand Still, Stay Silent. Also: Girls with Slingshots, which just finished recently.

Swales
Swales
5 years ago

Yay, links to Ursula Vernon short stories! It’s like Christmas up in here 😀

Like many here, I’m usually 2-to-20 years behind in my consumption of sci-fi media (just finished reading The Sparrow and its sequel Children of God) but I’ll do my best with the categories I’m more caught-up on.

While I love Saga and Ms. Marvel to pieces, the sci-fi comic that I’ve enjoyed the most this year has been Sex Criminals. Every time I expect them to run out of ideas, they do something awesome and unexpected, and they make me laugh so hard that milk comes out of my nose which is weird because I wasn’t drinking milk? Also there’s a model of the Iron Throne made out of dildos instead of swords. I repeat: the comic Sex Criminals has an Iron Throne made out of dildos instead of swords. This is not a drill.

For games, has anybody nominated The Talos Principle yet? I got it for my brother for his birthday, and we’ve been playing through it the past couple weeks. It’s pretty fun. The philosophical questions it pokes at aren’t new (my bro summarizes the plot as “What are humans? Let’s look at some robots. Are they human? Maybe!”), but it’s a well-made game with challenging, interesting puzzles.

Penny
Penny
5 years ago

@Proxieme

Yuph, Butcher is straight cis and white and has mass geek appeal so, my thoughts are that the puppies snapped him up to show they weren’t completely off the reservation.

My husband and I had this conversation about Butcher’s female characters, and he’s stated the same thing you did: Karen, Mab, Charity, Molly, Lara are all strong women (I mean Karen was a cop, something that should send Vox Day into conniptions). And even more important Harry has no problem with it, and has never, at least from what I remember (been a bit since I read the series) had a problem with following a woman’s lead.

It’s the same with the Codex Alera series. Amara, Isana, Kitai, Aria, even Invidia are all strong women in their own right. And with the exception of Invidia’s spouse (political marriages gotta love ’em) all the men in their lives trust their judgement and respect their strengths.

I don’t know about Butcher’s politics, since he doesn’t seem to air them anywhere I’ve noticed. But I understand he’s a generally decent guy. I just wish we could damp down the politics. I know there’s always going to be some in these award things (look at the Oscars), but this Sad Puppies/Rabid Puppies this is just… I have the words for it, but I’m not going to use them here. Swearing like a sailor might undermine my thoughtful tone .

monopole
monopole
5 years ago

If there is an animation category or general TV show I’m Nominating RWBY by the late Monty Om who passed away far too soon. Pretty much 90% strong women.
Girl Genius gets the nod for webcomic.
This last year was utter hell, and the only SF Novels I got to read were Neptune’s Brood and Rhesus Chart, the former was solid but really needed an epilogue while the latter was a disappointment in that it collapsed in plotting at the end, which is usually Stross’ primary strength.
Best SF Person: Monty Om (RIP)
Worst SF person: Vox Day

Arctic Ape
Arctic Ape
5 years ago

Best webcomic: In Other Wor(l)ds by Mikko Metsähonkala

http://toisaalta.artbio.fi/

(Ok, technically a sampling of surrealist graphics published as a book in 2013. I’ve just really wanted to promote this somewhere. If you buy the book, it should also come with bilingual subtitles.)

Jenora Feuer
Jenora Feuer
5 years ago

Worst SF film, though I suppose some people wouldn’t call it that, Left Behind. (but it was entertaining; I love bad Nicolas Cage movies)

On the other hand, as was mentioned over at Slacktivist, how do you make a Nicolas Cage movie and cast him as the sane one?

Coolest SF Person: Bruce Schneier for managing a genuinely interesting and careful discussion of possible rule changes to the Hugos over on the blog Making Light.

I first found out about him over twenty years ago because he wrote one of my University textbooks. Been following his blog off and on for a while (in fact, found Slacktivist from there because somebody jokingly commented about the security implications of your pilot being Raptured). Yeah, he’s a good guy.

freemage
5 years ago

David: Heh. Just as well, on Dark Mirror not being eligible for 2014–I found out the same thing… when I was considering nominating it for the “Worst” category. I concede its technical skill, but… well, the content grows increasingly problematic the more I think about it.

As for nominations… If we’re allowed multiples per category, then in this order of priority, for webcomics:

Gunnerkrigg Court
El Goonish Shive
Skin Horse
Guilded Age
Order of the Stick

Paradoxical Intention
5 years ago

monopole | April 15, 2015 at 11:22 am
If there is an animation category or general TV show I’m Nominating RWBY by the late Monty Om who passed away far too soon. Pretty much 90% strong women.
Girl Genius gets the nod for webcomic.
This last year was utter hell, and the only SF Novels I got to read were Neptune’s Brood and Rhesus Chart, the former was solid but really needed an epilogue while the latter was a disappointment in that it collapsed in plotting at the end, which is usually Stross’ primary strength.
Best SF Person: Monty Om (RIP)
Worst SF person: Vox Day

I’m just going to second this as well. Monty was an awesome person, and he will be missed terribly.

I keep flitting about with this, but all of these nominations are so damn good!

psycomedia
5 years ago

I’d like to nominate Spacescape http://spacescapecomic.tumblr.com/ for best Webcomic

Neon Vincent
5 years ago

I was wondering when you’d get around to this topic. I blogged about the Gators and their allies tampering with the 2015 Hugo nominees for movies and television. I actually agreed with the nominations of “Edge of Tomorrow,” “Guardians of the Galaxy,” and “Interstellar,” but thought that “Snowpiercer” and “Under the Skin” were snubbed. Thanks for giving your readers an opportunity to nominate works not tainted by misogyny.

Here’s my ballot for the categories I care about.

•Best Comic/Graphic Novel: The Walking Dead, All Out War
•Best Webcomic: Girl Genius (if there are no other webcomics nominated, then Darths&Droids)
•Best SF site: io9
•Best SF blog: Crazy Eddie’s Motie News (the rules don’t disallow self-nomination, so I’m nominating my own blog)
•Best SF movie: Snowpiercer
•Best SF TV series: The Walking Dead (if that is disallowed, then Extant)
•Best SF podcast/Youtube channel: Nerdist
•Best SF Twitterer: John Scalzi
•Coolest SF person: Neil Gaiman
•Biggest SF asshole: Vox Dei
•Worst SF movie: Atlas Shrugged III: Who Is John Galt?
•Worst SF TV series: Mission Control (NBC ordered six episodes and cancelled the series before showing any of them; if it doesn’t qualify then The Last Ship–I like it, but Michael Bay)

I’ll check the previous page of comments to see if I can nominate more than one per category. If I can, then quoth The Terminator, “I’ll be back.”

Rabukurafuto
Rabukurafuto
5 years ago

I can’t believe this drivel has actually been dignified with a cover and an Amazon webpage, let alone a nomination for any kind of award. It’s a perfect example of how this kind of person just doesn’t understand the meaning of the word ‘funny’.

It doesn’t appear to have anything to do with SF beyond presumably being written by an SF author. It shouldn’t be a nominee even if it were funny.

Robert
Robert
5 years ago

Simeon Beresford – seconding “Litany for Earth”.

Many others – seconding “Order of the Stick”. Discovered it recently, spent a week binge reading it. Now that I’m caught up, it’s been a trial waiting for updates.

I’d have suggestions of my own, but I haven’t read anything that came out as recently as last year.

AltoFronto
AltoFronto
5 years ago

Ooh – another great webcomic is Subnormality, by Winston Rowntree.
http://www.viruscomix.com/subnormality.html
One of the recurring characters is The Sphynx, and she is awesome.

And I have been furiously scribbling down all these recommendations so I can go search around for them later. It’s now about A5 of my most tiny, spidery handwriting – I just hope I can actually read it all back. 😛

Tara the Antisocial Social Worker
Tara the Antisocial Social Worker
5 years ago

Haven’t read through all the back comments yet, so just in case no one’s gotten around to it, Leonard Nimoy for Coolest SF Person. If I’m allowed multiple nominees in one category, add George Takei. I see Scalzi’s already been nominated in multiple categories.

Terry Pratchett’s “Raising Steam” for best novel.

Robert
Robert
5 years ago

Neon Vincent – good on you for recognizing “Atlas Shrugged” as science fiction. There are only two groups that deny it’s SF- Randians and SF fans.

Falconer
5 years ago

@Robert: I’ve been reading Order of the Stick since at least 2007, and let me tell you, the wait for updates has been historically pretty agonizing. At least his thumb healed and he got back to the strip. For a while there, we were on tenterhooks.

yutolia
yutolia
5 years ago

I was thinking that this would be a fantastic contest to vote in, but then I realized that everything I read this was either about WWI, WWII, or came out before 1980. So, I guess I’ll be using y’all’s recommendations!!!

kmcorby
5 years ago

I would second Welcome to Night Vale for Podcast, and Order of the Stick for web comic. I don’t read it, but my husband loves it.

katz
5 years ago

I was thinking that this would be a fantastic contest to vote in, but then I realized that everything I read this was either about WWI, WWII, or came out before 1980. So, I guess I’ll be using y’all’s recommendations!!!

We should hang out.

katz
5 years ago

For best SF movie, Song of the Sea definitely deserves a nomination. (I didn’t see a category for animation, but it would go there if we had one.)

Penny
Penny
5 years ago

Figured I’d share this from i09… Annie Bellet and Marko Kloos have withdrawn their works from the Hugos because they were included in the Sad/Rabid Puppy slates and that may have been how they got on the short list.

http://io9.com/two-authors-withdraw-their-work-from-the-hugo-awards-1698053027?utm_campaign=socialflow_io9_facebook&utm_source=io9_facebook&utm_medium=socialflow

Damn brave

Jarnsaxa
Jarnsaxa
5 years ago

I second the Dragon Age: Inquisition nomination for games.

Shaenon
5 years ago

Seconding the nomination for Song of the Sea!

For webcomics, Jason Shiga’s Demon.

Norapinephrine
Norapinephrine
5 years ago

Multiple noms are okay? Nom nom nom nom!!

Best Movie: Captain America: Winter Soldier
Best Novel: Sparrow Hill Road by Seanan McGuire
The Winter Long by Seanan McGuire
Cibola Burn by James SA Corey
The Widow’s House by Daniel Abraham

Dawn Incognito
Dawn Incognito
5 years ago

I’ve just learned that Connie Willis has declined to present the Hugos this year

And finally, to Vox Day, Brad Torgeson, and their followers, I have this to say:

“You may have been able to cheat your way onto the ballot. (And don’t talk to me about how this isn’t against the rules–doing anything except nominating the works you personally liked best is cheating in my book.) You may even be able to bully and intimidate people into voting for you. But you can’t make me hand you the Hugo and say “Congratulations,” just as if you’d actually won it. And you can’t make me appear onstage and tell jokes and act like this year’s Hugo ceremony is business as usual and what you’ve done is okay. I’m not going to help you get away with this. I love the Hugo Awards too much.”

Connie Willis

April 14, 2015

Damn right.

Biggest SF Asshole: Harlan Ellison. Always and forever. Vox Day is a poseur compared to Harlan.

Rabukurafuto
Rabukurafuto
5 years ago

Has anyone read Abengoni: First Calling by Charles Saunders? I own it but haven’t finished reading it due to having trouble focusing on a single book at a time, but I just remembered it was publish in 2014. It’s about a mighty fantasy African empire coming into contact with fantasy Arab and European empires and how it changes the lives of everyone in all three empires.

proxieme
proxieme
5 years ago

Penny and Dawn beat me to it!

I was just coming to post about the withdrawals, too.

proxieme
proxieme
5 years ago

katz said: For best SF movie, Song of the Sea definitely deserves a nomination. (I didn’t see a category for animation, but it would go there if we had one.)

It’s so, so lovely.

matchstickuk
matchstickuk
5 years ago

I’m guessing The Wind Rises isn’t speculative enough to qualify for a movie (or animation) nomination ?

proxieme
proxieme
5 years ago

re: The Wind Rises: It’s pretty much straight historical fiction, right?

I haven’t had the mental room to watch it yet. I know it’s supposed to be more nostalgic than anything else, but I’m still traumatized from watching Grave of the Fireflies overy a decade and a half ago :p