Brad Torgersen shares his “reaction” statement to the Wall Street Journal:
Because people will be gloating and/or gnashing their teeth (alternately) I’ve not been much inclined to make any after-the-fact statements. My “job” with this thing, finished the minute the door shut on the voting.
But I want to re-emphasize something I told WIRED magazine’s Amy Wallace: it doesn’t necessarily matter who wins or loses a Hugo award this year, as much as it matters that participation keeps increasing.
This year there were a record number of memberships, and a record number of ballots cast. This is very, very good. A democracy (any democracy) is only as worthwhile as those who keep their end up by actively participating. Past Hugo voting has tended to be remarkably anemic. Sad Puppies has changed this significantly — for two years running. If the participation (beyond 2015) declines, the Hugos are diminished. If participation grows, the Hugos mean more. That’s the real bottom line (in my book) and it goes way beyond which “side” can construct victory narratives.
A fine and noble sentiment. I applaud him for it. And I don’t disagree; a larger electorate means 40 Tor-affiliated SJWs can’t continue to hand Patrick Nielsen Hayden and Charles Stross and John Scalzi more Hugos to go with the 39 they’ve already collected.
Meanwhile, Mark Judge of CNS sets the historical record straight:
There is controversy surrounding this year’s Hugo Awards, the prestigious science fiction prize which will be handed out this Saturday and whose previous winners have included Isaac Asimov, Philip K. Dick and Robert Heinlein. This year’s ballot has many names on it that liberals and the media have denounced as racist and reactionary white men.
The group in question counter that they are not reactionary, racist, or even white, and that the reporting on the entire episode has been atrocious.
The group of writers, calling themselves the “Sad Puppies” – a satire on liberalism’s penchant for appealing to emotion over logic – successfully got themselves on the Hugo ballot, and then nominated, by appealing to the fans who vote for the award. The Sad Puppies unofficial leader is Brad Torgerson, author of “The Chaplain’s War” and other works and a U.S. Army Reserve Warrant Officer. Torgerson, who has been nominated for both the Hugo and the Nebula, another prestigious sci-fi prize, told one interviewer, “It became plainly obvious, especially after 2010, that a lot of the classic works of the old days – there’s no way they could possibly make it in the current climate because the current climate was all about affirmative action.”