to nominate, or not to nominate…

In an attempt to be conscientious, I’ve just spent far, far too much time filling out my Hugo Nominations. It’s taken me ages to track down which books, stories, films, artists, editors, semiprozines, etc. qualify for the individual awards.

For the love of spare time, could the Hugo committee assemble a list of those eligible for the awards? Maybe not in every category, but it would be nice if I knew exactly which magazines qualify as a semiprozine. It appears that online magazines that don’t pay professional rates don’t qualify, since this category stipulates a “press run of at least 1,000 copies per issue.” Considering how times are changing, this seems incredibly backward.

The writers who qualify for the John W. Campbell Award are listed on the award’s website (but I’m not sure it’s completely up-to-date – no sign of Scott Lynch, for instance). The rules have changed recently, so it’s a bit of a muddle.

There are glaring absences in the awards: no award for best collection/anthology, and no awards for comics/graphic novels. I assume there are reasons why this is so.

I won’t divulge the stories/editors/etc I did nominate, but I will discuss the Dramatic Presentation nomination. There is Long Form (usually films), and Short Form (usually individual episodes of TV series).

Here are five films from 2006 that deserve nomination:
Pan’s Labyrinth d. Guillermo del Toro
The Host d. Joon-ho Bong
V For Vendetta d. James McTeigue
The Prestige d. Christopher Nolan
Children of Men d. Alfonso Cuaron

You’ll notice that I’ve skipped the likes of Pirates of the Caribbean, Superman Returns, or X-Men: The Last Stand, all of which did well in the box office, because I don’t think they deserve a nomination.

When I came to the Short Form nomination I landed in a quandary. I discovered there is a limitation of 90 minutes on this category. This means if you want to nominate the likes of The Lost Room, or the television adaptation of Pratchett’s The Hogfather (both of which deserve a nod) you will have to put them into the Long Form category. Both of them have 120 minute run times per episode.

I had a hard time with the short form category. There are tons of Science Fiction and Fantasy shows on TV (note, only those two genres are mentioned, horror is excluded; however I think a lot of modern horror lands in the fantasy camp too).

There’s no point mentioning which individual episodes merit singling out in this category, but I think that people should consider these TV programmes in particular: Dr. Who, Medium, the Masters of Horror series, and Battlestar Galactica.

Bollocks, I’ve just remembered The Venture Bros., and Robot Chicken. Damn, damn, damn. Both are worth a mention.

Sure, there are plenty of others, such as the Stargates, Supernatural, The Ghost Whisperer, A Town Called Eureka, Torchwood, and the new Robin Hood series. This list contains series that I think vary from average to extremely poor quality. None of them are worth a nomination, in my opinion.

I expect Battlestar Galactica will dominate this category.

Thanks goodness for Wikipedia, and obsessed fans. Every series I mentioned has its own entry, and best of all an airdate for each episode. I went on the assumption that the first airing of an episode is what counted.

I feel somewhat frazzled after all of this, and irritated that it took so long to track down the necessary information. Maybe it’s the fault of a personality trait of mine that requires precise details, and doesn’t like to throw together a couple of names and titles and hope for the best.