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John Klima
Posted on Thursday, August 07, 2003 - 06:15 am:   

Congrats on the World Fantasy award nomination for Special Award (non-professional)!! Although in my estimation, you guys are completely professional in your demeanor and publications!

JK
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GabrielM
Posted on Thursday, August 07, 2003 - 09:10 am:   

Yup, congrats Jason and Jeremy!

Out of curiosity, what's the difference between professional and non-professional? For example, what makes Golden Gryphon a nominee in the professional category and NS, Small Beer, Prime and Old Earth in the non-professional?
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Forrest
Posted on Thursday, August 07, 2003 - 09:47 am:   

Don't go there!!!! Don't ask that question! Don't do it!!

No, really, Jason and Jeremy are professionals, no doubt. They are a charm to work with. Congrats, guys!

Forrest
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Ellen
Posted on Thursday, August 07, 2003 - 10:28 am:   

It's always iffy. When I was a judge we put Doug Winter in the non-pro category (as a critic, before he wrote fiction) because he held a full time job as a lawyer and did the criticism on the side. It's up to each panel of judges.
Ellen
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Lou Anders
Posted on Thursday, August 07, 2003 - 10:42 am:   

Up to each panel of judges seems very arbitrary.
I dont see very much difference between Night Shade and Golden Gryphon in terms of their product. I dont know what differences exist in terms of print run, advances, etc.. But this seems very arbitrary.

Also, on a related tangent: I'm still aghast that there is no "best anthlogy" category for the Hugos. Surely, of all types and genres of fiction, the anthology is singularly important to SF.
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RFW
Posted on Thursday, August 07, 2003 - 11:05 am:   

I don't understand the non-professional designation. Seems like a leftover from fandom, which doesn't seem at all relevant unless it's specifically for fanzine types of publications. Which Night Shade isn't.

Robert
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GabrielM
Posted on Thursday, August 07, 2003 - 11:59 am:   

>>When I was a judge we put Doug Winter in the non-pro category (as a critic, before he wrote fiction) because he held a full time job as a lawyer and did the criticism on the side.


Sounds familiar! Actually, that distinction -- whether the person is employed full-time in the venture or whether it's something they do in their spare time, seems a reasonable one, although I'm not sure it was followed here. I don't know about the NS boys, but Kelly and Gavin, for example, I believe dedicate all their time to their editorial and writing work.
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Laura Anne
Posted on Thursday, August 07, 2003 - 02:00 pm:   

The question was asked by the judges this year as to what the hell "best non-pro" meant.

We got back resounding silence.

I was really temped to list the previous year's WFC judges. It could become a reward, of sorts, for what we go through...





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Nick Mamatas
Posted on Thursday, August 07, 2003 - 02:02 pm:   

Congrats!

Non-pro? Can we trade fanzines for NS books now?
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Michael Walsh
Posted on Thursday, August 07, 2003 - 03:44 pm:   

"Also, on a related tangent: I'm still aghast that there is no "best anthlogy" category for the Hugos. Surely, of all types and genres of fiction, the anthology is singularly important to SF."

Well . . . all you have to do is write up a definition of the category, present it to the Business Meeting of the Worldcon that year, have it passed two years in a row, and there it is.

Any member of the Worldcon that year may introduce new business. Details about the World SF Society are here: www.wsfs.org .

Michael Walsh
Retired Worldcon Chair
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Night Shade Books
Posted on Thursday, August 07, 2003 - 04:02 pm:   

My understanding of non-pro vs. pro is whether you make your primary source of income doing it. I could be wrong.

For what it's worth, Night Shade is a full-time operation, and it's my only source of income. PS is also a full-time, as is Small Beer. I don't think that Golden Gryphon is, but I could be mistaken.

Jason
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Cheryl Morgan
Posted on Friday, August 08, 2003 - 12:49 am:   

Hmm, WSFS has some fairly detailed definitions of what classes as professional, "semi-professional" (which I guess is what a lot of small presses are) and fans. It is all on the web site that Mike so kindly pointed you to. I had a look at ther WFC site and couldn't even see the break points they use for dividing the fiction categories (though I think that is actually on the ballot).

FYI, by WSFS rules, Nightshade would class as professional because it provides Jason's primary source of income.

BTW Lou, as I recall, the argument on the anthology Hugo goes like this. Firstly there are lots of awards for short fiction (some people think too many). There used to be an award for best magazine, but then people started asking for best anthology, best collection and so on. And in order to avoid a proliferation of awards, what we ended up with was Best Editor, which you might get for a great magazine, you might get for a great anthology (or both in Gardner's case) or you might get for your work on novels. Not that I'm particularly defending this stance (except in avoiding Hugo proliferation). I'm just pointing out that if you want to make a case for best anthology you'll also need to consider a) whether you should have best collection and best pro magazine as well, and b) whether that means you must scrap best editor. All of these issues will be raised in debate.

And for the sake of everyone else's sanity, if you really want to do something about this, contact me offline and I'll put you in touch with someone who can explain the process in detail.
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Michael Walsh
Posted on Friday, August 08, 2003 - 07:06 am:   

Further nattering about a "Best Collection" Hugo . . .

Would it be fair for a collection of author X's Hugo Award Wining fiction to go up against, say, a new Golden Gryphon collection?

Would it be fair for Gardner's Year Best to be in the same category as a Golden Gryphon collection?

All of this is not to pour cold water on the idea, but to point out some of the problems that one would encounter. I suspect there are enough clever folks here, who once the get their neurons fired up, can come up with other "concerns" that would have to be addressed. So, follow Cheryl's request, email her for who to talk to about how to do this.

Michael Walsh

"When all else fails, duct tape fixies everything - even pasties."
Trixie Little in the Washington Post 8/3/03
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GabrielM
Posted on Friday, August 08, 2003 - 08:50 am:   

You know, Mike, the fact that I can't figure out from your example which of the parties you think is being unfairly treated makes me suspect it wouldn't be a problem....

And congrats on your own nomination, btw.
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Nick Mamatas
Posted on Friday, August 08, 2003 - 10:04 am:   

Prime is Sean Wallace's only source of income too.

(that's why he's so cheap)
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Jonathan Strahan
Posted on Friday, August 08, 2003 - 10:20 am:   

Hi all

I was a WFA judge a couple years ago, and the administrators wrote to us and said "The Special Award categories are a bit of a catch-all, with Non-Pro defined as someone who does not make the largest part of their living by the activity for which they are nominated." Don't know if this is of interest, but...

Also, many congrats and best wishes to the NightShade guys. You do great books and deserve the nomination.

Best
J
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Night Shade Books
Posted on Friday, August 08, 2003 - 01:03 pm:   

There's seems to be an element of time involved, as it looks like most of the SP nominees have been around for 10+ years, while most of the SNP nominees have been around 5 or less. Ballpark, of course.

Frankly, we're just happy to have been nominated at all. Karl Edward Wagner won a Special Award Non-Professional, in large part for publishing Wellman. It'd tickle us just fine to win the same award for publishing... Wellman :-)

Jason
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Stephen Gallagher
Posted on Saturday, August 09, 2003 - 02:17 pm:   

Although 'non-professional' is a world away in meaning from 'unprofessional', it would be nice to have some other term that doesn't somehow hint that the bar's being lowered. 'Non-corporate' would do it for me, at least as far as publishing houses go... dunno how you'd apply it to an individual critic, though.

In cricket it used to be 'gentlemen and players'. Gentlemen were unpaid and did it for the love of the game. Players did it for the money and had lower status.

Next task: a gender-free substitute for 'Gentlemen'...
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Michael Walsh
Posted on Sunday, August 10, 2003 - 04:24 pm:   

"You know, Mike, the fact that I can't figure out from your example which of the parties you think is being unfairly treated makes me suspect it wouldn't be a problem.... "

My point is that saying "Best Collection" is one thing, defining it is another.

Michael





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Deborah Layne
Posted on Monday, August 11, 2003 - 10:56 pm:   

I thought the terms were pretty well understood -- "collection" means all stories by one guy (or gal) and "anthology" means stories by a bunch of different guys (or gals). Seems like those are easy definitions to apply.

And it seems like a Hugo for antho or collection makes sense, doesn't seem like they'd be redundant at all.

Deborah
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Deborah
Posted on Monday, August 11, 2003 - 10:58 pm:   

Rats -- unless of course you make a typo -- I meant to say Hugos for best antho AND best collection make sense -- two separate ones.

Deborah
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Cheryl Morgan
Posted on Tuesday, August 12, 2003 - 12:50 am:   

And I guess you'd want to keep Best Editor too. And have a Hugo for Best Professional Magazine. And then you'd complain that the ceremony was too long. Hey, you are welcome to try it. But don't expect much support at the Business Meeting.

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