The Hugo awards are the most prestigious fan-voted awards in the science fiction and fantasy world. The awards, first given in 1953, are named after Hugo Gernsback, editor/publisher of the first science fiction magazine, Amazing Stories. The final ballot for the 2003 Hugo Awards (for achievements in 2002) was announced April 17 and follows. Links have been added where stories are available for reading on the internet; if you'd like to add a link, email me. Also, I have various comments and category definitions interspersed throughout the ballot. Voting for the 2003 Hugo Awards is closed July 31. Winners will be determined by instant-run-off voting (aka Australian rules or preferential balloting; see IRV explained with Muppets). Winners were announced on Sat. Aug. 30, 2003, at Torcon and are indicated in bold italics.
(621 people submitted nominations for 219 novels)
Bones of the Earth by Michael Swanwick (Eos)
Hominids by Robert J. Sawyer (Analog 1-4/02; Tor). For fictionwise etext. Extended excerpt.
Kiln People by David Brin (Tor). Extended excerpt.
The Scar by China Miéville (Macmillan; Del Rey)
The Years of Rice and Salt by Kim Stanley Robinson (Bantam). Extended excerpt.
Comments by FW: I'm a little surprised that Summerland by Michael Chabon and Light by M. John Harrison didn't make the final ballot. What we do have is quite an illustrious set of nominees. Brin has won three Hugos, including 2 for novels. Robinson won for two of his Mars books. Swanwick has won three Hugos for his shorter fiction. Sawyer's been nominated six times, though never managed to get a rocketship (but don't you think he deserves one? I do.)
(374 people submitted nominations for 65 novellas. Six nominees due to a fifth place tie)
A Year in the Linear City by Paul Di Filippo (PS Publishing) Text here.
"Breathmoss" by Ian R. MacLeod (Asimov's 5/02) Read it!
"Bronte's Egg" by Richard Chwedyk (F&SF 8/02) Read It!
Coraline by Neil Gaiman (HarperCollins) Read an extended excerpt free.
"In Spirit" by Pat Forde (Analog 9/02) Read it!
"The Political Officer" by Charles Coleman Finlay (F&SF 4/02) Read it!
Comments by FW: Charlie Finlay's "The Political Officer" was nominated for the Nebula this year, and Chwedyk's "Bronte's Egg" won it. Mike Nelson, Hugo Awards administrator, has also noted that Coraline, by word-count, is a Novella rather than a (young adult) Novel, and Neil Gaiman happily agreed to his nomination in this category.
(377 people submitted nominations for 148 novelettes)
"Halo" by Charles Stross (Asimov's 6/02) Read it!
"Madonna of the Maquiladora" by Gregory Frost (Asimov's 5/02) Read it! Or: Read it here!
"Presence" by Maureen F. McHugh (F&SF 3/02) Read it!
"Slow Life" by Michael Swanwick (Analog 12/02) Read it!
"The Wild Girls" by Ursula K. Le Guin (Asimov's 3/02) Read it!
Comments by FW: The wonderful website Sci Fiction was shut out this year, which was too bad since it some really strong pieces like Ray Vukcevich's "The Wages of Syntax" and Alex Irvine's "Jimmy Guang's House of Gladmech." Also, Leslie What's story "Thanksgiving" and Karen Joy Fowler's "What I Didn't See" were widely well-liked, for the short story category.
On declining awards and noms: Ted Chiang respectfully declined his nomination for the Best Novelette category. Mike Nelson explained that "I placed Ted Chiang's novelette "Liking What You See: A Documentary" (Stories of Your Life and Others) on the nominee list before I received his reply to my request for confirmation. Ted respectfully declined his nomination. He felt the story was not representative of his best work. Perhaps you can offer to buy Ted a drink next time you see him at a convention and get the full story from him."
How often do people refuse awards - or nominations? Mark R. Kelly wrote: "Refusals of award wins are relatively rare. Lisa Tuttle declined the Nebula Award for short story in 1982 after protesting a campaign tactic by another nominee. Lester del Rey declined a posthumous Hugo for Judy-Lynn del Rey in 1986 on the grounds that the award was a sympathy vote. And recently Greg Egan declined both the Aurealis and Ditmar awards for his novel Teranesia for reasons not made public." In addition, nominations have been refused/withdrawn in the past. Harlan Ellison withdrew his nomination for "Best Fan Writer" in 1968, as he had earlier won both a Hugo and Nebula (for "'Repent, Harlequin!' Said the Ticktockman"). Alice Sheldon (writing as James Tiptree, Jr.) reportedly withdrew her story "The Women Men Don't See" from consideration for the Nebula because too much of the attention it garnered was because many thought it was written by a man. She thought a Nebula win would be under false pretenses. In 1972 Robert Silverberg withdrew his Hugo nom for his novel The World Inside; perhaps this was so it would not compete with his novel, A Time of Changes, which was also nominated. Unfortunately for Silverberg, Philip Jose Farmer won anyway for To Your Scattered Bodies Go. This strategy did however work at the 1972 Nebulas, when Robert Silverberg withdrew Son of Man and The World Inside from competition, leaving A Time of Changes on the ballot -- which won. In 1987, Michael Whelan withdrew his name from consideration for the Best Pro Artist Hugo, having won every year from 1980 to 1986. Finally, Greg Egan withdrew all his works from the 1996 Ditmar ballot after winning twice the year before.
As for those actually in the running, Greg Frost's "Madonna of the Maquiladora" was up for the Nebula this year, but like many other worthy contenders, lost out to Ted Chiang.
(400 people submitted nominations for 262 short stories)
"Creation" by Jeffrey Ford (F&SF 5/02) Read it! Or download it here.
"Falling Onto Mars" by Geoffrey A. Landis (Analog 7-8/02) Read it!
"'Hello,' Said the Stick" by Michael Swanwick (Analog 3/02) Read it!
"Lambing Season" by Molly Gloss (Asimov's 7/02) Read it!
"The Little Cat Laughed to See Such Sport" by Michael Swanwick (Asimov's 10-11/02) Read it!
Comments by FW: When stuff is published. This year's Hugo awards are for items first published in 2002. John L. Flynn's short story "A Gift of Verse", published at the Nexxus website in 2002, was on the ballot as initially released, but a day later ruled ineligible for the Hugo because it was initially published in Flynn's short story collection, "Visions in Light and Shadow," in 2000. Part of Mike Nelson's reasoning was that the book's copyright date was 2000, and in 2001 Hugo award balloting, this collection received seven nominations (but not enough to make the final ballot). A final wrinkle: it turns out that book was delayed in publication and may not actually have been generally available until 2002. And the seven nominations came from friends and family who saw early proofs of the book before it was available. But, still, the seven nominations were enough to sway Mike Nelson into believing the 2000 pub date. The lesson here, I guess, is that if you're going to ask people to vote for you for a Hugo, make sure they all do it in the same year. Flynn's story was replaced on the ballot by "Lambing Season," by Molly Gloss, which appeared in Asimov's July 2002 issue. For sure. Mike Nelson has more on this, as does Nexxus itself and the fanzine Ansible.
Multiple noms: You also may have noticed that Swanwick has two stories nominated in this one category. Does having two stories competing each other help or hurt? George Flynn calculated that, from 1959 to 1996 (no figures are more recent), this has happened 12.5 times (in 1981, one author, Martin, was on the ballot in the novella category twice, but one story was co-authored with Tuttle). Of all these nominations, only one author competing against self actually won (Nancy Kress with "Beggars in Spain" in 1992).
Also, Swanwick has 4 Hugo nominations, which would tie him for the record in one year. Eggleton had 4 (with 1 win) in 1996, and Resnick also had 4 (with 1 win) in 1995. Since two of Swanwick's noms are in the same category, he could win up to 3, which would beat the record of 2 for the most Hugos won in one year (done by lots of people).
Though, I suppose, Swanwick could theoretically win four Hugos this year if his stories tied for a win. Ties in Hugo voting have happened 9 times, but not since 1993 when Vinge's Fire Upon the Deep and Willis' Doomsday Book tied. No one yet, though, has tied with him/herself.
(262 people submitted nomination for 83 related books)
The Battle of the Sexes in Science Fiction, Justine Larbalestier (Wesleyan University Press) Justine's homepage.
Better to Have Loved: The Life of Judith Merril, Judith Merril and Emily Pohl-Weary (Between the Lines)
Dragonhenge, Bob Eggleton and John Grant (Paper Tiger)
Bradbury: An Illustrated Life, Jerry Weist (Morrow)
Spectrum 9: The Best in Contemporary Fantastic Art, Cathy Fenner and Arnie Fenner, eds. (Underwood Books)
Comments by FW: This is the sixth time that a Spectrum art annual has been up for a Hugo in this category, but it has never won. Bob Eggleton won in this category in 2001 with Greetings from Earth.
(529 people submitted nominations for 59 long form dramatic presentations)
Harry Potter and the Chamber of Secrets (Warner Bros.)
Directed by Chris Columbus; Screenplay by Steve Kloves; based on the novel by J. K. Rowling
The Lord of the Rings: The Two Towers (New Line Cinema)
Directed by Peter Jackson; Screenplay by Fran Walsh, Phillippa Boyens, Stephen Sinclair & Peter Jackson; based on the novel be J. R. R. Tolkien
Minority Report (20th Century Fox & DreamWorks SKG)
Directed by Steven Spielberg; Screenplay by Scott Frank and Jon Cohen; based on the story by Philip K. Dick
Spider-Man (Columbia Pictures)
Directed by Sam Raimi; Screenplay by David Koepp; based on the comic book character created by Steve Ditko and Stan Lee
Spirited Away (Studio Ghibli & Walt Disney Pictures)
Directed by Hayao Miyazaki; Screenplay by Hayao Miyazaki (English version by Cindy Davis Hewitt and Donald H. Hewitt)
Comments by FW: The most notable absence is the wonderful Lilo and Stitch. As voting was going on there was some in-fighting in fandom about whether this was a long or short form. Technically, it is a short form (clocking in at 85 min., just under the 90 min cut-off). However, the cut-off was supposed to have been a little squishy, and it sure felt like it should have been competing against movies instead of TV show episodes. Nonetheless, one wonders if its nominations were split between the two categories, or if the judges lumped them together and it still came up short. We'll find out when final nomination figures are released after the Hugo award ceremony itself. However, Mike Nelson did give the hint that most of Lilo's nominations were in the full-length category. There were some in the short form category, but most of these could not be aggregated with Lilo's long-form noms because there were already the maximum of five nominations on these ballots.
Spirited Away is my personal favorite for this category, but a long-shot against Lord of the Rings; Spirited did however win the Academy Award for best full-length animated film, so perhaps it already has its reward. The first Lord of the Rings movie last year was the only finalist to win on the first round of vote counting (i.e., the only finalist to get more than 50% of number 1 votes). The first movie, by my count, also set a new high with the most nominations in any category (343), surpassing the previous record held by 1977's Star Wars (338). The released Hugo information this year showed that an unidentified candidate in this category received 428 nominations (I can only guess it's the second Rings flick). This, of course, blows both records away.
Also, some people have wondered why Lord of the Rings and Harry Potter are nominees in the first place. I mean, aren't the Hugo awards (as opposed to, say, the World Fantasy Awards) given for science fiction, and not fantasy? Well, no. Contrary to popular belief and despite their monicker "Science Fiction Achievement Awards", Hugo Awards also cover works of fantasy. The Constitution of the World Science Fiction Society Article 3.2.1 states: "Unless otherwise specified, Hugo Awards are given for work in the field of science fiction or fantasy appearing for the first time during the previous calendar year." Recent winners which were more fantasy than science fiction were American Gods and novels Harry Potter and the Goblet of Fire, and the films Lord of the Rings and Crouching Tiger.
As an added note, when Harry Potter and the Goblet of Fire won the 2001 Hugo award for best novel in Philadelphia, neither the author nor the publisher showed any interest whatsoever in the award. The author (I can't even say her name I'm still so angry) didn't come to the ceremony, nor did she send a representative. She didn't even return phone calls, as if fannish activities were somehow beneath her. Because the book was the odds-on favorite to win, the WorldCon committee was frantic, and eventually selected a schoolteacher who'd never met the author to stand up there and gush and gracefully accept this award which, if it ever reached the author, would probably promptly go into her waste basket. But there we were, true fans giving perhaps the greatest honor that we the fans can give, a Hugo award for Best Novel, and the author doesn't even care. So this big F U to the fans left a bad taste on everyone's mouth. Last year, the film Harry Potter and the Sorcerer's Stone was up for the Hugo for Best Dramatic Presentation. It didn't win. Perhaps some of this had to do with the wonder and majesty that was Lord of the Rings, but perhaps that bitter slap in the face was also remembered. So I wouldn't count on the second Harry Potter film winning this year. Or the fifth Harry Potter book winning the Best Novel Hugo next year.
(284 people submitted nominations for 176 short form dramatic presentations)
Star Trek: Enterprise, "A Night in Sickbay"
Directed by David Straiton; Teleplay by Rick Berman & Brannon Braga
Star Trek: Enterprise, "Carbon Creek"
Directed by James Contner; Story by Rick Berman & Brannon Braga, and Dan O'Shannon; Teleplay by Chris Black
Buffy the Vampire Slayer, "Conversations With Dead People"
(20th Century Fox Television/Mutant Enemy Inc.)
Directed by Nick Marck; Teleplay by Jane Espenson & Drew Goddard
(20th Century Fox Television/Mutant Enemy Inc.)
Directed by Joss Whedon; Teleplay by Joss Whedon
Angel, "Waiting in the Wings"
(20th Century Fox Television/Mutant Enemy Inc.)
Directed by Joss Whedon; Teleplay by Joss Whedon
(399 people submitted nominations for 89 professional editors)
David G. Hartwell
Gordon Van Gelder
Comments by FW: Last year Ellen Datlow became just the second editor since 1988 to grab this honor from Gardner Dozois (Kristine Kathryn Rusch won in 1993). Could be an example of voter fatigue. Let's see what happens this year.
(344 people submitted nominations for 141 professional artists)
David A. Cherry
Frank Kelly Freas
Pro Artist: Curious that Michael Whelan, who's won 15 Hugos between 1978 and 2002, didn't make the ballot this year. Though he won the final voting last year, he barely had enough noms to make the ballot. Last year he was the finalist with the fewest nominations at 36, while David Cherry was the non-finalist with the most noms (34). This year they apparently changed places. Whelan might be suffering from voter fatigue, combined with the fact that he's doing a lot more personal gallery work and fewer book covers. Whelan magnanimously removed himself from the ballot once, but he said his income seriously dipped that year. Also, he's publicly stated that gallery work is a dicey thing financially - you're not guaranteed a sale, and if you do show and sell it, it won't be for a year. Will his absence from the ballot thus drive him, professionally or financially, back to doing more book covers? If so, the sci-fi world would greatly benefit.
As for David Cherry, he's won 8 Chesley Awards and has been nominated for this Hugo 10 times (inc. one for nonfiction book) from 1988 to 1998. It might be his year, or the year Kelly Freas returns to prominence (he's won 10 times, but not since 1976). Or it might be the time for Donato Giancola, whose star has deservedly been rising recently (he had the most number 1 votes last year, but not enough second and third place votes to carry the ballot). I think, though, that Donato's work hasn't been showing up at enough convention artshows to win the large fanbase he would need to snag the Hugo he so much deserves. All of them fully deserve to have an armfull of Hugo, but I'm betting on Eggleton.
(314 people submitted nominations for 47 semiprozines)
Ansible edited by Dave Langford
Interzone edited by David Pringle
Locus edited by Charles N. Brown, Jennifer A. Hall, and Kirsten Gong-Wong
The New York Review of Science Fiction edited by Kathryn Cramer, David G. Hartwell, and Kevin Maroney
Speculations edited by Kent Brewster
Comments by FW: At the Hugo award ceremony last year, Dave Langford declared that his magazine, Ansible, was now a semi-pro and no longer a fanzine. Indeed, it was nominated in the semi-pro category for the first time this year. In a way, this sets up Langford, a perennial winner in the Best Fan Writer category, up against Locus, the perennial winner in the Best Semi-Pro mag category (won every year since the category began in 1984 except for three). Though, actually, Langford's magazine (five wins since 1983) often wins, but not as often as Langford himself (1985 and 1987, and every year since 1989). It will be curious to see what happens, though, in this battle of behemoths.
(289 people submitted nominations for 93 fanzines)
Challenger edited by Guy H. Lillian III
Emerald City edited by Cheryl Morgan
File 770 edited by Mike Glyer
Mimosa edited by Rich and Nicki Lynch
Plokta edited by Alison Scott, Steve Davies, and Mike Scott
Comments by FW: In this category, Mimosa and File 770 have each won five times. This is Emerald City's first nom, Challenger's fourth and Plokta's fifth, but none has ever won.
(315 people submitted nominations for 144 fan writers)
John L. Flynn
Steven H Silver
Fan Writer and Fanzine: The Voyageur, edited by Karen Bennett, is a fanzine that's now won three Aurora awards in a row (2000 to 2002). One of its writers, Alexander von Thorn, won the 2002 Aurora for Fan Achievement. The fanzine is run by IDIC, a fan club in Toronto, where Torcon will be, which would seem to give it a home-field advantage. Even though there was a two-page ad in the Torcon Progress Report 4 requesting our consideration for nomination, neither made it.
This is Flynn's second nom in this category, Silver's fourth and Devney's sixth. Glyer has won three times; and as noted above Langford has won in 1985 and 1987, and every year since 1989.
(243 people submitted nominations for 76 fan artists)
Brad W. Foster
Fan Artist: Steve Stiles, who's been doing fan art for fifty years, appears on the ballot again. He was actually on the first two ballots in this category, from 1967 and 1968, but hasn't made it since then. This 35-year gap is the biggest gap between Hugo award ballot appearances on record.
In this category, Brad Foster's won five times and Teddy Harvia (aka David Thayer) has won four times. This is Sue Mason's third and Frank Wu's second nom, but neither has won yet. To see sample of these artists' work, click on the links above, or check out this site.
(not a Hugo Award — an award for best new science fiction writer, sponsored by Dell Magazines and administrated by the current Worldcon committee)
(259 people submitted nominations for 93 new writers)
Charles Coleman Finlay (second year of eligibility)
David D. Levine (first year of eligibility)
Karin Lowachee (first year of eligibility)
Wen Spencer (second year of eligibility)
Ken Wharton (second year of eligibility)
Comments by FW: David Levine's eligibility was changed from second to first year. Mike Nelson explained: "This is David D. Levine's FIRST year of eligibility for the John W. Campbell Award. I will repeat that - this is David D. Levine's FIRST year of eligibility for the John W. Campbell Award. While I personally feel that Interzone is a marvelous magazine and everyone should read it, having a story appear in Interzone does not count as a professional sale under the award guidelines, as so many people pointed out to me."
A total of 761 nomination forms were received from members of Torcon 3 and ConJosé. There were 738 valid nomination forms. Twenty-three nomination forms were declared ineligible because of missing signatures and other reasons. One person submitted a completely blank form.
Jeffrey Copeland provided the software used to tally the Hugo Award nominations.
Ted Chiang respectfully declined his nomination for the Best Novelette category. One short story nominee (by John Flynn, published at Nexxus) was replaced since it had been previously published in 2000. This is David D. Levine's first year of eligibility for the John W. Campbell Award. Your Hugo Administrator thanks everyone who took the time to inform him about errors in the original nominee list.
A list of the top fifteen nominees in each category (with the number of nominations received) will be released after the 2003 Hugo Award winners are announced at the Torcon 3 Hugo Ceremony on Saturday, August 30th. ...
Questions or comments may be sent to the Torcon 3 Hugo Awards postal address (PO Box 3252, Merrifield, VA 22116-3252 USA) or HugoAdmin@torcon3.on.ca.
Summary: Category Forms Nominations Nominees Range Novel 621 1,888 219 97-69 Novella 374 906 65 85-41 Novellette 377 1,006 148 60-28 Short Story 400 1,058 262 31-22 Related Book 262 548 83 51-28 Dramatic Presentation, Long 529 1,574 59 428-130 Dramatic Presentation, Short 284 710 176 72-22 Professional Editor 399 1,057 89 131-104 Professional Artist 344 918 141 107-49 Semiprozine 314 717 47 136-51 Fanzine 289 631 93 58-44 Fan Writer 315 751 144 51-38 Fan Artist 243 520 76 83-27 Campbell Award 259 688 93 60-36
Additional Comments by FW:
Every year there's grousing about how few people nominate for the Hugo awards, considering the psychological weight they carry in this field. I think they have less to grouse about this year than in other years. There were 738 valid Hugo nomination ballots submitted this year, which by my reckoning is an all-time record. The previous high of 660 was 1983, and there seems to be an upswing lately, with 495 in 2001, 626 ballots in 2002 and 738 this year. (And this is not 'cos of high overall membership (there were at last count 3022 Torcon members), though this year's nom balloting may benefit from the enthusiasm of last year's ConJose attendees, who voted in droves last year and probably nominated well this year, too. A lot of people are reading novels, too, which is also a good sign/good bellwether indicator: 621 ballots had at least one novel nominee listed, which I think is also an all-time high. I suspect a lot of the upswing in voting has to do with the internet, but Torcon didn't release figures on how many people voted electronically.
Who will win?
Winners will be announced at Torcon, Sat., Aug. 30, 2003. However, the Science Fiction Weekly is running a Hugo Award poll. Take the poll here. Current results are here. The SFW Hugo Award Poll is interesting and fun, but the reader must be aware that it is not terribly effective at predicting who actually wins. The 2002 Poll only picked 7 winners out of 13 categories - 54% accuracy. The 2001 Poll was even worse, picking only 4 out of 12 or 25%. In several categories in 2002 the award winner placed last in the poll. So I wouldn't expect the current poll to accurately reflect who will win the 2003 Hugos, either.
Who should win?
I'm not going to go there, seeing how I and a ton of my friends are on the ballot (notice how I carefully avoided the issue of "who should win" throughout this page). However, Cheryl Morgan, who's braver than me, had some comments about this at her Emerald City website: here and here and here.
Historical Hugo and Other Award information:
For information on last year's (2002) Hugo award nominees and winners, click here (info on all noms) or here (full nom figures) or here (final voting breakdown). For historical Hugo awards information, click here or here. For this information in graphical form, click here. George Flynn's analysis of Hugo voting is here. For a comprehensive and newly updated guide to every major SF and F award, check out Mark R. Kelly's Locus Index to SF Awards page. Check out this page out for lists of who has won the most awards, which novels have won both the Hugo and Nebula, and other analyses. For an old analysis (from 1996) of Nebula winners and winning, click here. For 2003 Nebula award winners click here; for finalists, click here; note, however, that because of differences in the nomination process, not all of this year's Nebula nominees are eligible for this year's Hugos. Only items published in the calendar year 2002 are eligible for this year's Hugos.
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