Monday, June 17, 2019

Musical Monday - The One That You Love by Air Supply


#1 on the Billboard Hot 100: The week of July 25, 1981.
#1 on the Cash Box Top 100: The week of July 18, 1981.
#1 on the U.K. Chart: Never.

The thing I remember most about Air Supply is that my mother had their greatest hits album, and copied it onto a cassette tape that had Hooked on Classics on the reverse side. As a result, Air Supply occupies a space in my mind that is a cross between "Mom rock" and "classical music set to a disco beat". They were the near ubiquitous soundtrack to the middle-school dances I attended, at least until Foreigner came out with Waiting for a Girl Like You and drove Air Supply's songs out of the regular party rotation.

To a certain extent, Air Supply was Journey before Journey became Journey!, turning out ballad after ballad and dominating the charts with piles of syrupy love songs. On the other hand, Air Supply was almost a caricature of a band. I've seen attempts to parody them - most notably Paul & Storm's song Right Here With You, which is a riff on the video for All Out of Love and the video for this song.

To be blunt, I can't think of a way one could parody Air Supply more than they do themselves. The lead singer with his giant tiger head print shirt and Conway Twitty style perm. The other lead singer with his oh-so-very-earnest acoustic guitar, gold medallion, and shirt unbuttoned halfway down his torso. The soft focus slow-motion scenes of the pair of them cavorting with their girlfriends on a playground. It would simply be impossible to come up with anything more ridiculous than this video.

Previous Musical Monday: Ghost Town by the Specials
Subsequent Musical Monday: Jessie's Girl by Rick Springfield

Previous #1 on the Billboard Hot 100: Stars on 45 Medley by Stars on 45
Subsequent #1 on the Billboard Hot 100: Jessie's Girl by Rick Springfield

Previous #1 on the Cash Box Top 100: Stars on 45 Medley by Stars on 45
Subsequent #1 on the Cash Box Top 100: Jessie's Girl by Rick Springfield

List of #1 Singles from the Billboard Hot 100 for 1980-1989
List of #1 Singles from the Cash Box Top 100 for 1980-1989
List of #1 Singles on the U.K. Chart for 1980-1989

Air Supply     1980s Project     Musical Monday     Home

Saturday, June 15, 2019

Book Blogger Hop June 14th - June 20th: Dialing 3-1-1 in the United States and Canada Will Connect You to Non-Emergency Municipal Services in Most Areas


Jen at Crazy for Books restarted her weekly Book Blogger Hop to help book bloggers connect with one another, but then couldn't continue, so she handed the hosting responsibilities off to Ramblings of a Coffee Addicted Writer. The only requirements to participate in the Hop are to write and link a post answering the weekly question and then visit other blogs that are also participating to see if you like their blog and would like to follow them.

This week Billy asks: Have you ever been called a "book nerd"? If so, how did you react?

I have been called so many varieties of nerd that I have lost count. Gamer nerd. Role-playing nerd. Comic book nerd. Science fiction nerd. Fantasy nerd. History nerd. Theater nerd. Even math nerd. And yes, book nerd as well. I'm sure there are numerous other variations that I have simply forgotten. To be blunt, I stopped caring about this sort of thing decades ago. I've been much happier since I became comfortable just loving the things I love and ignoring the people who just don't "get it".

We have a finite amount of time to love what we love. Don't worry so much about what other people think about your passions and just enjoy pursuing them.


Book Blogger Hop     Home

Monday, June 10, 2019

Musical Monday - Ghost Town by the Specials


#1 on the Billboard Hot 100: Never.
#1 on the Cash Box Top 100: Never.
#1 on the U.K. Chart: July 11, 1981 through July 25, 1981.

One of the reasons I included the U.K. Charts in the 1980s Project is that the U.K. had weird songs reach number one in the 1980s. As further evidence of this fact, I point to Ghost Town, a quirky Arabian inspired song with creepy lyrics and a reggae beat. This is, however, a kind of cool weird, which sets it apart from some of the terrible weird songs that also reached the top spot in the U.K.

Ghost Town is kind of cool and kind of weird, but it is about a society in crisis - a dysfunctional country with no jobs, a neglectful government and not even any clubs or bands as a diversion, with basically nothing for anyone to do but fight one another. The fact that this odd but bitter and biting song reached number one immediately after the bland and almost insipid One Day in Your Life seems almost impossible, but that seems to be the U.K. in the early 1980s in a nutshell.

Previous Musical Monday: One Day In Your Life by Michael Jackson
Subsequent Musical Monday: The One That You Love by Air Supply

Previous #1 on the U.K. Chart: One Day In Your Life by Michael Jackson
Subsequent #1 on the U.K. Chart: Green Door by Shakin' Stevens

List of #1 Singles from the Billboard Hot 100 for 1980-1989
List of #1 Singles from the Cash Box Top 100 for 1980-1989
List of #1 Singles on the U.K. Chart for 1980-1989

Specials     1980s Project     Musical Monday     Home

Sunday, June 9, 2019

2019 Mythopoeic Award Nominees

Location: Mythcon 50 in San Diego, California.

Comments: This year's crop of Mythopoeic Award nominees features three different trilogies. Based on this, one might think that the selection committee has a hard time making up its mind, and consequently simply punted the decision by giving nominations to groups of books. This may be to offset the extremely narrow focus of some of the other categories, which seem to have the same collection of nominees show up year after year. For example, three of the nominees in the Scholarship in Inklings Studies category are returning nominees from 2018, as are three of the nominees in the Myth and Fantasy Studies category. The limited focus of the award is somewhat worrying, as it results in a very restricted, and consequently somewhat less than interesting range of nominees.

Best Adult Fantasy Literature

Winner:
TBD

Other Nominees:
The Arcadia Project: Borderline, Phantom Pains, Impostor Syndrome by Mishell Baker
Circe by Madeline Miller
In Other Lands by Sarah Rees Brennan
The Innsmouth Legacy: The Litany of Earth, Winter Tide, Deep Roots by Ruthanna Emrys
Spinning Silver by Naomi Novik

Best Children's Fantasy Literature

Winner:
TBD

Other Nominees:
Bob by Wendy Mass and Rebecca Stead
The Chronicles of Claudette: Giants Beware!, Dragons Beware!, Monsters Beware! by Jorge Aguirre and Rafael Rosado
The Stone Girl’s Story by Sarah Beth Durst
Sweep: The Story of a Girl and Her Monster by Jonathan Auxier
Tiger vs. Nightmare by Emily Tetri

Scholarship Award in Inklings Studies

Winner:
TBD

Other Nominees:
The Flame Imperishable: Tolkien, St. Thomas, and the Metaphysics of Faërie by Jonathan S. McIntosh
There Would Always Be a Fairy Tale: More Essays on Tolkien by Verlyn Flieger
Tolkien: Maker of Middle-Earth by Catherine McIlwaine
Tolkien, Self and Other: This Queer Creature by Jane Chance
Tolkien’s Theology of Beauty: Majesty, Splendor, and Transcendence in Middle-Earth by Lisa Coutras

Myth and Fantasy Studies

Winner:
TBD

Other Nominees:
Celtic Myth in Contemporary Children’s Fantasy: Idealization, Identity, Ideology by Dimitra Fimi
Genres of Doubt: Science Fiction, Fantasy and the Victorian Crisis of Faith by Elizabeth M. Sanders
Gods and Humans in Medieval Scandinavia: Retying the Bonds by Jonas Wellendorf
Race and Popular Fantasy Literature: Habits of Whiteness by Helen Young
The Routledge Companion to Imaginary Worlds edited by Mark J.P. Wolf

Go to previous year's nominees: 2018
Go to subsequent year's nominees: 2020

Book Award Reviews     Home

Saturday, June 8, 2019

Book Blogger Hop June 7th - June 13th: The Romans Defeated the Etruscans in the Battle of Lake Vadimo in 310 B.C.


Jen at Crazy for Books restarted her weekly Book Blogger Hop to help book bloggers connect with one another, but then couldn't continue, so she handed the hosting responsibilities off to Ramblings of a Coffee Addicted Writer. The only requirements to participate in the Hop are to write and link a post answering the weekly question and then visit other blogs that are also participating to see if you like their blog and would like to follow them.

This week Billy asks: What's the oldest work (by publication date) you've read?

This is an interesting question, because it raises the issue of what one means by "published". I've read some very old works, but only in translation, since I don't speak Ancient Greek and my Latin is rudimentary at best. The question to be confronted is when were they "published"? Do we consider their publication when they were first written, or when they were translated? I'm leaning towards "when they were first written", but I can see an argument for the other position. of course, once you go back far enough, "publication date" becomes a fuzzy issue, mostly because there aren't really good records for when a particular story was first written.

For example, I have read the Iliad and the Odyssey, both in multiple translations. As far as I can tell, general consensus is that these stories were first written (as opposed to being recounted in oral form) some time in the 8th century B.C. I have also read Antigone by Sophocles, which is usually dated to some time around 441 B.C. This does take a somewhat expansive view of what a "work" is, as the Iliad is an epic poem and Antigone is a play. If we are confining the question to prose novels, another older work I have read is The Golden Ass by Apuleius, which is the oldest known surviving novel and is dated to some time in the late 2nd century A.D.

If we are only counting works of more recent vintage published in English, I have read Ivanhoe by Sir Walter Scott, which was published in 1820.


Book Blogger Hop     Home

Monday, June 3, 2019

Musical Monday - One Day in Your Life by Michael Jackson


#1 on the Billboard Hot 100: Never.
#1 on the Cash Box Top 100: Never.
#1 on the U.K. Chart: June 27, 1981 through July 4, 1981.

One Day in Your Life was a song out of time, even in 1981. Originally released in 1975, the song was rereleased by Motown records in 1981 in order to capitalize on Jackson's success with his Epic Record album Off the Wall. The fact that this song reached the U.K. chart in this decade is the result of a cynical cash grab by Jackson's former label - a label he dumped because he thought they were stifling his creative efforts. There is a kind of irony in the fact that as soon as Jackson gained some creative freedom and as a result garnered greater success than he had while under their banner, Motown attempted to profit from that success by proxy.

The difference between this song and the songs on Off the Wall is noticeable. There isn't anything wrong with it, but there isn't anything particularly memorable about it either. This song is kind of dull, even by the relatively bland standards of most of Jackson's music. I've never been a huge fan of Jackson's music, mostly because he always seemed to be making mostly safe, mostly middle-of-the-road choices presumably to be able to appeal to as many suburban teenagers as possible. That said, when compared to this slice of Wonder bread masquerading as a song, his music from the 1980s seems almost radical.

Previous Musical Monday: Stars on 45 Medley by Stars on 45
Subsequent Musical Monday: Ghost Town by the Specials

Previous #1 on the U.K. Chart: Being With You by Smokey Robinson
Subsequent #1 on the U.K. Chart: Ghost Town by the Specials

List of #1 Singles from the Billboard Hot 100 for 1980-1989
List of #1 Singles from the Cash Box Top 100 for 1980-1989
List of #1 Singles on the U.K. Chart for 1980-1989

Michael Jackson     1980s Project     Musical Monday     Home

Saturday, June 1, 2019

Book Blogger Hop May 31st - June 6th: Cassander Killed Alexander IV, the Nominal King of Macedon, in 309 B.C.


Jen at Crazy for Books restarted her weekly Book Blogger Hop to help book bloggers connect with one another, but then couldn't continue, so she handed the hosting responsibilities off to Ramblings of a Coffee Addicted Writer. The only requirements to participate in the Hop are to write and link a post answering the weekly question and then visit other blogs that are also participating to see if you like their blog and would like to follow them.

This week Billy asks: Do you read books over 400 pages?

Given that I read a lot of fantasy novels, the answer to this question is "yes". So many modern fantasy novels are so big and weighty due to their high page count that the term "doorstop fantasy" is fairly commonly used. Though not quite a common, lengthy science fiction novels are also not unheard of, and I read a lot in that genre as well, so that's another vector for books in excess of 400 pages to find their way into my reading pile.

Although not novels, I note that for decades the late Gardner Dozois produced very popular a "year's best" collection of science fiction stories every year, and pretty much every single one of those exceeded 400 pages in length, so regular science fiction readers probably have read a lot of long books.


Book Blogger Hop     Home

Monday, May 27, 2019

Musical Monday - Stars on 45 Medley by Stars on 45


#1 on the Billboard Hot 100: The week of June 20, 1981.
#1 on the Cash Box Top 100: June 20, 1981 through June 27, 1981.
#1 on the U.K. Chart: Never.

In 1981, disco was in its last death throes, but it wasn't going to go down without taking some good music with it. Apparently, what the world needed was a mash-up of the intro to Shocking Blue's Venus followed by snippets from the Archies' Sugar, Sugar, and then bits of the Beatles' No Reply, I'll Be Back, Drive My Car, Do You Want to Know a Secret, We Can Work It Out, I Should Have Known Better, Nowhere Man, and You're Going to Lose That Girl, all set to a common disco beat. It is a hypnotically horrific travesty, and a crime of epic proportions against good music.

The really weird thing is that this sort of thing is sometimes done by comedy groups to show how similar many pop hits are. For example, the Axis of Awesome has a song they call Four Chord Songs in which they run through a bunch of pop hits that all use the same four chords. Similarly, a few years ago, comedian Rob Paravonian went on a famous rant about how all modern pop music was basically just a disguised version of Pachelbel's Canon in D. The difference is that those groups are doing the medley for laughs, while Stars on 45 was doing it because they thought it was somehow a worthwhile way to present this music.

It isn't. This medley offends me to my very core.

Previous Musical Monday: Being With You by Smokey Robinson
Subsequent Musical Monday: One Day in Your Life by Michael Jackson

Previous #1 on the Billboard Hot 100: Bette Davis Eyes by Kim Carnes
Subsequent #1 on the Billboard Hot 100: The One That You Love by Air Supply

Previous #1 on the Cash Box Top 100: Bette Davis Eyes by Kim Carnes
Subsequent #1 on the Cash Box Top 100: The One That You Love by Air Supply

List of #1 Singles from the Billboard Hot 100 for 1980-1989
List of #1 Singles from the Cash Box Top 100 for 1980-1989
List of #1 Singles on the U.K. Chart for 1980-1989

Stars on 45     1980s Project     Musical Monday     Home

Saturday, May 25, 2019

Book Blogger Hop May 24th - May 30th: The .308 Round Can Be Used in Hunting Rifles and Sniper Rifles in Fallout 3 and Fallout: New Vegas


Jen at Crazy for Books restarted her weekly Book Blogger Hop to help book bloggers connect with one another, but then couldn't continue, so she handed the hosting responsibilities off to Ramblings of a Coffee Addicted Writer. The only requirements to participate in the Hop are to write and link a post answering the weekly question and then visit other blogs that are also participating to see if you like their blog and would like to follow them.

This week Billy asks: Do you continue with a book even though you aren't liking it?

The answer to this question mostly depends on whether the book is a review copy or not.

If the book is one that I have accepted for a review, I will finish the book even if I don't like it. That way, when I write my review, I can do so armed with full knowledge of the contents of the book. I will point out that this is probably not really a good thing for books that are really bad - reading more just gives me more to use to highlight the inadequacies of the text.

If a book is one that I am simply reading for my own enjoyment, I will put it down if I'm not really enjoying it. Usually I don't even make a conscious decision to abandon a book. I just set it down, move on to other things, and lose interest in picking it up again.

The only notable exceptions to these tendencies are books that I am reading either to participate in voting for awards, such as books I am reading so I can cast a ballot in the Hugo Awards, or stories I am reading so I can vote in the WSFA Small Press Award, or books that I am reading as part of one off my reading projects. For example, I am currently in the middle of reading and reviewing all of the books that won the International Fantasy Award. I'll finish all of the books that won that award, even if I don't particularly like them.


Book Blogger Hop     Home

Monday, May 20, 2019

Musical Monday - Being With You by Smokey Robinson


#1 on the Billboard Hot 100: Never.
#1 on the Cash Box Top 100: The week of May 23, 1981.
#1 on the U.K. Chart: June 13, 1981 through June 20, 1981.

The early 1980s were a time of transition for music, and this hit by Smokey Robinson seems to be part of that. It is rooted in Robinson's R&B background, but it seems to bear some Bee Gees-like influences from the disco era, but it also anticipates the smooth sound that many other artists will adopt in the upcoming years of the decade. Other than that, there isn't really too much to the song. The lyrics describe a man so entirely in love with a woman that he simply doesn't care about anything other than being with her. There's not really any subtext or deeper meaning than that.

Previous Musical Monday: Bette Davis Eyes by Kim Carnes
Subsequent Musical Monday: Stars on 45 Medley by Stars on 45

Previous #1 on the Cash Box Top 100: Morning Train (Nine to Five) by Sheena Easton
Subsequent #1 on the Cash Box Top 100: Bette Davis Eyes by Kim Carnes

Previous #1 on the U.K. Chart: Stand and Deliver by Adam and the Ants
Subsequent #1 on the U.K. Chart: One Day in Your Life by Michael Jackson

List of #1 Singles from the Billboard Hot 100 for 1980-1989
List of #1 Singles from the Cash Box Top 100 for 1980-1989
List of #1 Singles on the U.K. Chart for 1980-1989

Smokey Robinson     1980s Project     Musical Monday     Home

Saturday, May 18, 2019

Book Blogger Hop May 17th - May 23rd: 307 Is the Only Area Code for Wyoming, and Has Been Since Area Codes Were Created in 1947


Jen at Crazy for Books restarted her weekly Book Blogger Hop to help book bloggers connect with one another, but then couldn't continue, so she handed the hosting responsibilities off to Ramblings of a Coffee Addicted Writer. The only requirements to participate in the Hop are to write and link a post answering the weekly question and then visit other blogs that are also participating to see if you like their blog and would like to follow them.

This week Billy asks: Which author would you most like to interview and why?


I will preface this answer by pointing out that I don't really do interviews. I have never actually done an interview for this blog, and I have no current plans to do any in the future. That may change at some point, but for now, I just don't really have a lot of interest in doing them.

This is the point where I would normally say "Ursula K. Le Guin" due to my deep and abiding love for her work, but she has left us, and isn't available for interviews any more.

My usual second choice for things like this is Samuel R. Delany, but when I thought about that for a bit it occurred to me that there are already lots of interviews with Delany. I'm not sure I could add anything new or interesting by interviewing him. The same holds true for many of the popular authors one might think of to interview. Sure, people like John Scalzi, George R.R. Martin, Ann Leckie, Seanan McGuire, and Neil Gaiman are interesting and always seem to give good interviews, but interviewing them is like covering well-trodden ground. There probably isn't a whole lot that one can learn in such an interview that is really new to the world.

I think that if I were to interview an author, I would pick someone whose work I love, but who may not have gotten all the exposure they should have. Perhaps someone like Tom Doyle, or Day al-Mohamed, or Ceallaigh MacCath-Moran, or Hildy Silverman. If I can't use this platform to highlight authors who are excellent writers but just don't seem to get all the love I think they deserve, then there really isn't much of a point to having it.


Book Blogger Hop     Home

Monday, May 13, 2019

Musical Monday - Bette Davis Eyes by Kim Carnes


#1 on the Billboard Hot 100: May 16, 1981 through June 13, 1981 and June 27, 1981 through July 18, 1981.
#1 on the Cash Box Top 100: May 30, 1981 through June 13, 1981 and July 4, 1981 through July 11, 1981.
#1 on the U.K. Chart: Never.

A remake of a 1974 release originally recorded by Jackie DeShannon, Bette Davis Eyes is the first hit song I remember becoming tired of hearing. This song spent nine nonconsecutive weeks at number one on the U.S. Billboard Hot 100 chart (interrupted in the middle by the Stars on 45 Medley) and was the biggest hit of 1981. The song received near constant radio airplay: I'm convinced that there were times when you could have listened to this song and this song alone if you switched radio stations strategically throughout the day.

I think that it is pretty clear that what made Kim Carnes' version a hit was the synthesizer riff. DeShannon's original version is essentially a big band style song, which thematically fits the lyrics much better, but that version of the song not only had no impact on the charts, it appears that it wasn't even released as a single. Carnes' version, on the other hand, reached number one in more than twenty countries. The synthesizers on Carnes' version do give the song an ethereal, almost dreamlike quality, but they also make it sound quintessentially early 1980s.

The other thing I am struck by is just how old the references in this song were when it became a hit. Bette Davis Eyes references three actresses: Bette Davis, Greta Garbo, and Jean Harlow. Harlow died in 1937, and while the other two actresses were still alive, their heydays were long in the past. Garbo had not appeared in a movie since 1941, and all of Davis' notable roles were behind her. In her career, Bette Davis won two Oscars, and was nominated eight more times, but her last nomination was in 1963. By 1981, Davis was mostly relegated to small roles and cameos, although she did regularly continue to work on the small screen well into the 1980s. Essentially, Carnes sang a techno-themed version of a song featuring three actresses who hadn't been part of pop culture for several decades. And somehow this became a huge hit.

Previous Musical Monday: Stand and Deliver by Adam and the Ants
Subsequent Musical Monday: Being With You by Smokey Robinson

Previous #1 on the Billboard Hot 100: Morning Train (Nine to Five) by Sheena Easton
Subsequent #1 on the Billboard Hot 100: Stars on 45 Medley by Stars on 45

Previous #1 on the Cash Box Top 100: Being With You by Smokey Robinson
Subsequent #1 on the Cash Box Top 100: Stars on 45 Medley by Stars on 45

List of #1 Singles from the Billboard Hot 100 for 1980-1989
List of #1 Singles from the Cash Box Top 100 for 1980-1989
List of #1 Singles on the U.K. Chart for 1980-1989

Kim Carnes     1980s Project     Musical Monday     Home

Saturday, May 11, 2019

Book Blogger Hop May 10th - May 16th: In 306 A.D., the Synod of Elvira Declared That Killing With a Magic Spell Is a Sin


Jen at Crazy for Books restarted her weekly Book Blogger Hop to help book bloggers connect with one another, but then couldn't continue, so she handed the hosting responsibilities off to Ramblings of a Coffee Addicted Writer. The only requirements to participate in the Hop are to write and link a post answering the weekly question and then visit other blogs that are also participating to see if you like their blog and would like to follow them.

This week Billy asks: Do you have a favorite classic? When did you read it? High School or as an adult?

The first question one has to answer is "what is a classic novel". For example, is Catch-22 a classic novel? It has been the subject of frequent academic study which seems to be one of the prime indicators of being a "classic", but it was published in 1961, which seems to recent to qualify for "classic" status. The issue one must confront is whether age is a primary determiner of whether a novel is "classic" or not?. Foundation was published in 1951, well before Catch-22, but outside of science fiction circles, pretty much no one regards Foundation as a classic work of literature.

On the other hand, books like As I Lay Dying and Light in August were published in the 1930s, and very few people would question their "classic" status. The same holds true for The Sun Also Rise and A Farewell to Arms, both published in the 1920s. But is the difference between being a classic or not really just thirty years of age? I don't know.

Alternatively, one could go back to the nineteenth century to look for a "classic" novel, since some people seem to think that anything published in the twentieth century or later is too recent to be a "classic" - perhaps something like The Three Musketeers or The Count of Monte Christo, which were published in the 1840s, although those books may not be regarded as "classic" literature by some despite their age. What qualifies as "classic" seems to me to be mostly in the eye of the beholder.

So, with that in Mind:

If Catch-22 by Joseph Heller qualifies as a classic, then that is my favorite classic. I read it in high school, but not as part of the high school curriculum.

If Catch-22 isn't a "classic", then Light in August by William Faulkner is my favorite classic. I read it in high school as part of the school's curriculum (I believe in Fifth Form English class).

If a classic has to be written before the twentieth century, then The Three Musketeers by Alexandre Dumas is my favorite classic. I read it in high school, but once again, not as part of the school curriculum.


Book Blogger Hop     Home

Monday, May 6, 2019

Musical Monday - Stand and Deliver by Adam and the Ants


#1 on the Billboard Hot 100: Never.
#1 on the Cash Box Top 100: Never.
#1 on the U.K. Chart: May 9, 1981 through June 6, 1981.

New Wave music of the early 1980s was weird. Sometimes that weirdness resulted in brilliance. Other times, it just resulted in weirdness for weirdness sake. This song has always seemed to me to be the second kind of weirdness.

I must admit that I didn't get the appeal of Adam and the Ants back then, and I don't get their appeal now. Their popularity was then and remains now, completely inexplicable to me. The music was kind of mediocre, the were lyrics pretentious for pretentiousness's sake, their personal style was "shocking" in a boring way, and Adam's singing voice topped everything off by being thin and annoying.

This specific song is a prime example of everything inexplicable about Adam and the Ants' popularity. The lyrics are Adam basically chiding people for their fashion sense while wearing an incredibly ridiculous get up himself. I'm not sure if this is supposed to be some sort of subtle dig at traditional clothing, or a criticism of pop style trends, or something else, but the irony in the fact that these lyrics are sung by a trend-chasing front-man seems not to be noticed by anyone in the band. Self-awareness seems not to have been their strong suit.

Previous Musical Monday: Morning Train (Nine to Five) by Sheena Easton
Subsequent Musical Monday: Bette Davis Eyes by Kim Carnes

Previous #1 on the U.K. Chart: Making Your Mind Up by Bucks Fizz
Subsequent #1 on the U.K. Chart: Being With You by Smokey Robinson

List of #1 Singles from the Billboard Hot 100 for 1980-1989
List of #1 Singles from the Cash Box Top 100 for 1980-1989
List of #1 Singles on the U.K. Chart for 1980-1989

Adam and the Ants     1980s Project     Musical Monday     Home

Saturday, May 4, 2019

Book Blogger Hop May 3rd - May 9th: "305" Is a 2008 Movie About Five Spartans Assigned to Guard a Goat Path


Jen at Crazy for Books restarted her weekly Book Blogger Hop to help book bloggers connect with one another, but then couldn't continue, so she handed the hosting responsibilities off to Ramblings of a Coffee Addicted Writer. The only requirements to participate in the Hop are to write and link a post answering the weekly question and then visit other blogs that are also participating to see if you like their blog and would like to follow them.

This week Billy asks: Which book do you wish you'd written?

A Wizard of Earthsea

I definitely would pick a book by Ursula K. Le Guin. I've made no secret of my love of Le Guin's writing, although Le Guin poses something of a problem for answering this question because there are so very many excellent books of hers to choose from. I would be completely satisfied with having written The Lathe of Heaven, or The Left Hand of Darkness, or The Word for World Is Forest, or any number of other books, but I am going to pick A Wizard of Earthsea because it is one of the books that formed my understanding of what fantasy fiction can be.

My foundational fantasy authors were J.R.R. Tolkien, Lloyd Alexander, and Ursula K. Le Guin. These three authors, for better or worse, shaped my view of what constitutes fantasy fiction. While I still adore Tolkien and Alexander, their fiction is more or less an outgrowth of previously existing British mythical roots. Tolkien's fantasy is heavily influence by Anglo-Saxon and Scandanavian myth, and Alexander's primary work of fiction is based in large part on Welsh myth. Le Guin's fiction, on the other hand, is more expansive, and breaking free of the Eurocentric rut that fantasy fiction so often falls into. She changed my view of what fantasy fiction could be with her Earthsea series, and the book that started that off was A Wizard of Earthsea. Le Guin showed me that fantasy fiction could move beyond Western-based tropes.

It also doesn't hurt that A Wizard of Earthsea is a brilliant story. It is simultaneously an excellent coming of age story, an example of superior world-building, and a fantasy quest that somehow hits all of the expected notes while being unpredictable at the same time. The book is beautifully written while remaining accessible to juvenile readers. It is, to put it bluntly, a masterful piece of fiction.

And those are the reasons why this is the book I wish I had written.


Book Blogger Hop     Home

Tuesday, April 30, 2019

2019 Prometheus Award Nominees

Location: Dublin 2019: An Irish Worldcon in Dublin, Ireland..

Comments: One of the notable things about the 2019 Prometheus Nominees is the complete lack of any Sad Puppies on the list. To be fair, the Pups never really got any significant traction with the Prometheus Awards - the only significant member of the Pups who has been nominated recently was Sarah Hoyt. This seems odd, since given the political proclivities of the Sad Pups, this award seems like it would be the natural home for them. In more than a few cases Pups have engaged in some rather obvious pandering in their works in an effort to get nominations for this award, but they never made a concerted effort to get their selections on the ballot in the same way they did for the Hugo Awards. There is probably an entire dissertation one could write about why the Pups almost completely ignored the Prometheus Award and instead battered their heads against the Hugo Awards, but since the Pups have mostly faded into well-deserved cultural irrelevance, there just doesn't seem to be much point in writing about it further now.

The larger issue with the Prometheus Awards is the repetitive nature of the Hall of Fame nominees. Of the five nominees, five of them had been nominated previously for the Hall of Fame. Harrison Bergeron has been nominated once before, while Conquest by Default has previously been nominated twice. Sam Hall has been nominated three times, while As Easy as A.B.C. has been nominated a total of thirteen times. The only Hall of Fame nominee that has not been previously nominated is Schrödinger's Cat: The Universe Next Door. Having nominees show up year after year until they get inducted is not a new phenomenon for the Prometheus Awards, and that seems to me to be something of a problem. If the range of potential nominees is so limited that one needs to renominate the same things over and over again until they win, the Hall of Fame seems less than impressive.

Best Novel

Winner:
TBD

Finalists:
Causes of Separation by Travis Corcoran
The Fractal Man by J. Neil Schulman
Kingdom of the Wicked by Helen Dale
The Murderbot Diaries by Martha Wells
State Tectonics by Malka Older

Hall of Fame

Winner:
TBD

Finalists:
Conquest by Default by Vernor Vinge
As Easy as A.B.C. by Rudyard Kipling
Harrison Bergeron by Kurt Vonnegut
Sam Hall by Poul Anderson
Schrödinger's Cat: The Universe Next Door by Robert Anton Wilson

Other Works Considered for the Hall of Fame

Demon and Freedom by Daniel Suarez (considered as a combined nomination)
Even the Queen by Connie Willis
ILU-486 by Amanda Ching
The Man Who Sold the Stars by Gregory Benford
A Mirror for Observers by Edgar Pangborn
The Mirror Maze by James P. Hogan
The Once and Future King and The Book of Merlyn by T.H. White (considered as a combined nomination)
That Hideous Strength by C.S. Lewis
A Time of Changes by Robert Silverberg

Previous year's nominees: 2018
Subsequent year's nominees: 2020

Book Award Reviews     Home

Monday, April 29, 2019

Musical Monday - Morning Train (Nine to Five) by Sheena Easton


#1 on the Billboard Hot 100: May 2, 1981 through May 9 1981.
#1 on the Cash Box Top 100: April 18, 1981 through May 16, 1981.
#1 on the U.K. Chart: Never.

Originally titled simply Nine to Five when released in the U.K., this song was famously renamed for its release in the United States in order to avoid confusion between it and the Dolly Parton hit 9 to 5 which reached number one on the U.S. charts just a handful of weeks before Morning Train (Nine to Five) did. I guess being a country music icon outweighs being an up and comer from Scotland.

The odd thing about Morning Train (Nine to Five) is that it reached number one in the U.S., but peaked at number three in the U.K. More accurately, I should say that this is an odd thing about the U.K., given that while this song was reaching the top of the charts in the U.S., ridiculous songs like Bucks Fizz's Making Your Mind Up were the number one hits in Britain. Morning Train isn't a great song - it is basically a pretty standard by the numbers pop hit about a woman pining for her significant other - but at least it isn't a schlockfest like Making Your Mind Up or Shaddup You Face.

I'm sure there is something deep and meaningful to say about the difference in the U.S. and the U.K. music markets that explains the fact that the U.K. seems to consistently reward the silly in a way the U.S. does not, but other than simply saying "the U.K. just likes weird in a way the U.S. does not", I don't know what that might be.

Previous Musical Monday: Making Your Mind Up by Bucks Fizz
Subsequent Musical Monday: Stand and Deliver by Adam and the Ants

Previous #1 on the Billboard Hot 100: Kiss On My List by Hall and Oates
Subsequent #1 on the Billboard Hot 100: Bette Davis Eyes by Kim Carnes

Previous #1 on the Cash Box Top 100: Kiss On My List by Hall and Oates
Subsequent #1 on the Cash Box Top 100: Being with You by Smokey Robinson

List of #1 Singles from the Billboard Hot 100 for 1980-1989
List of #1 Singles from the Cash Box Top 100 for 1980-1989
List of #1 Singles on the U.K. Chart for 1980-1989

Sheena Easton     1980s Project     Musical Monday     Home

Saturday, April 27, 2019

Book Blogger Hop April 26th - May 2nd: 304 Was the Only Area Code for West Virginia Until 2009


Jen at Crazy for Books restarted her weekly Book Blogger Hop to help book bloggers connect with one another, but then couldn't continue, so she handed the hosting responsibilities off to Ramblings of a Coffee Addicted Writer. The only requirements to participate in the Hop are to write and link a post answering the weekly question and then visit other blogs that are also participating to see if you like their blog and would like to follow them.

This week Billy asks: At the end of a hard day, how do you get yourself psyched about writing a book review?

For the last couple of months, I haven't been getting myself psyched to write book reviews, which is why there haven't been any since 2018. Between work and the attention the littlest starship captain needs, I just haven't had the energy to write reviews for the last few months. More accurately, I should say that I don't have the energy to complete reviews - I have three reviews in various stages of completion and another two incomplete blog posts that I simply haven't been able to get to the finish line. I always hope that next week will be when I am able to get them finished, but thus far that has been a forlorn hope.

However, this week will be the week. I have misplaced confidence.


Book Blogger Hop     Home

Monday, April 22, 2019

Musical Monday - Making Your Mind Up by Bucks Fizz


#1 on the Billboard Hot 100: Never.
#1 on the Cash Box Top 100: Never.
#1 on the U.K. Chart: April 18, 1981 through May 2, 1981.

Making Your Mind Up is the second Eurovision Song Contest winner to reach number one on the U.K. chart in the 1980s, the first being Johnny Logan's What's Another Year. Other than that, it would be difficult for the two songs to be more different. Whereas Logan's song is a kind of introspective look at getting old and the kind of loss that comes with it, Making Your Mind Up is an almost meaningless piece of pop fluff that is mostly notable for its choreographed dance routine.

The odd thing about the notability of the dance routine that goes with this song is just how silly the reason it is notable. The Eurovision Song Contest is a kind of goofball pop circus, and Making Your Mind Up is just another example of this fact. What made this dance routine notable takes place at about 1:31 in the video, when the two male members of the band pull the skirts off the two female members of the band, revealing that they are wearing shorter skirts underneath. This was considered to be a particularly clever touch that swung the Eurovision vote in the band's favor and is regarded by some as a defining moment in the competition's history. To me, the fact that "pulling skirts off some band members" could be considered a "defining moment" of the competition indicates that the Eurovision Song Contest is basically ludicrous.

After winning the Eurovision Song Contest, Making Your Mind Up went on to become one of the most successful singles in the U.K. for 1981. The song was so notable that the annual U.K. competition to determine who would represent the U.K. in the Eurovision Song Contest was named "Eurovision: Making Your Mind Up" for four years from 2004 through 2007.

Sometimes the U.K. is just a little bit ridiculous, and everything relating to this song is just evidence confirming this.

Previous Musical Monday: Kiss On My List by Hall and Oates
Subsequent Musical Monday: Morning Train (Nine to Five) by Sheena Easton

Previous #1 on the U.K. Chart: This Ole House by Shakin' Stevens
Subsequent #1 on the U.K. Chart: Stand and Deliver by Adam and the Ants

List of #1 Singles from the Billboard Hot 100 for 1980-1989
List of #1 Singles from the Cash Box Top 100 for 1980-1989
List of #1 Singles on the U.K. Chart for 1980-1989

Bucks Fizz     1980s Project     Musical Monday     Home

Friday, April 19, 2019

Book Blogger Hop April 19th - April 25th: The Roland TB-303 Bassline Synthesizer Is a Highly Sought After Piece of Equipment


Jen at Crazy for Books restarted her weekly Book Blogger Hop to help book bloggers connect with one another, but then couldn't continue, so she handed the hosting responsibilities off to Ramblings of a Coffee Addicted Writer. The only requirements to participate in the Hop are to write and link a post answering the weekly question and then visit other blogs that are also participating to see if you like their blog and would like to follow them.

This week Billy asks: Do you check how many views your posts have received?

I don't usually pay too much attention to the number of views a post gets. Because I use Blogger as a platform for this blog, the page view count is listed on the default working page, so I see the page views for the most recent couple of posts pretty much every time I go to work on a new post, but I don't really pay much attention to the numbers. I might take note if a page seems to be garnering an unusually large amount of attention, but for the most part I just don't care. I mostly write this blog for my own amusement, so any audience that it gets is basically just a happy accident as far as I'm concerned.


Book Blogger Hop     Home

1944 Retro Hugo Award Finalists (awarded in 2019)

Location: Dublin 2019: An Irish Worldcon in Dublin, Ireland.

Comments: As usual, I will raise my usual objections to the entire concept of the Retro Hugos: (1) They don't have any chance of accurately representing the preferences of the science fiction community of the era they are supposed to represent, and instead are selected by people looking back through mists of both time and nostalgia; and (2) fitting work from a bygone era into categories designed for modern media is a bit like trying to jam a square peg into a round hole. I've raised both of these objections before, and they are no less true now than they were when I first raised them.

To this pair of objections, I will raise yet another: The level of participation in nominating for the Retro Hugos is so low that it is common for several entire categories to be dropped. This year, the glaring absence of the Best Art Book special category from the Retro Hugos is the most obvious example of this fact. When even a special category created specifically for this particular Worldcon is unable to garner enough support to exist as a Retro Hugo category, that is evidence that the Retro Hugos themselves have a problem.

Best Novel

Winner:
TBD

Other Finalists:
Conjure Wife by Fritz Leiber
Earth’s Last Citadel by C.L. Moore and Henry Kuttner
Gather, Darkness! by Fritz Leiber
Das Glasperlenspiel (The Glass Bead Game) by Hermann Hesse
Perelandra by C.S. Lewis
The Weapon Makers by A.E. van Vogt

Best Novella

TBD

Other Finalists:
Attitude by Hal Clement
Clash by Night by C.L. Moore and Henry Kuttner
The Dream-Quest of Unknown Kadath by H.P. Lovecraft
The Little Prince by Antoine de Saint-Exupéry
The Magic Bed-Knob; or, How to Become a Witch in Ten Easy Lessons by Mary Norton
We Print the Truth by Anthony Boucher

Best Novelette

Winner:
TBD

Other Finalists:
Citadel of Lost Ships by Leigh Brackett
The Halfling by Leigh Brackett
Mimsy Were the Borogoves by C.L. Moore and Henry Kuttner
The Proud Robot by Henry Kuttner
Symbiotica by Eric Frank Russell
Thieves’ House by Fritz Leiber

Best Short Story

Winner:
TBD

Other Finalists:
Death Sentence by Isaac Asimov
Doorway into Time by C.L. Moore
Exile by Edmond Hamilton
King of the Gray Spaces (aka R is for Rocket) by Ray Bradbury
Q.U.R. by H.H. Holmes
Yours Truly – Jack the Ripper by Robert Bloch

Best Graphic Story

Winner:
TBD

Finalists:
Buck Rogers: Martians Invade Jupiter by Philip Nowlan and Dick Calkins
Flash Gordon: Fiery Desert of Mongo by Alex Raymond
Garth by Steve Dowling
Plastic Man #1: The Game of Death by Jack Cole
Le Secret de la Licorne (The Secret of the Unicorn) by Hergé
Wonder Woman #5: Battle for Womanhood written by William Moulton Marsden, art by Harry G. Peter

Best Dramatic Presentation: Long Form

Winner:
TBD

Finalists:
Batman written by Victor McLeod, Leslie Swabacker and Harry L. Fraser
Cabin in the Sky written by Joseph Schrank
A Guy Named Joe written by Frederick Hazlitt Brennan and Dalton Trumbo
Heaven Can Wait written by Samson Raphaelson
Münchhausen written by Erich Kästner and Rudolph Erich Raspe
Phantom of the Opera written by Eric Taylor, Samuel Hoffenstein and Hans Jacoby

Best Dramatic Presentation: Short Form

Winner:
TBD

Other Finalists:
The Ape Man written by Barney A. Sarecky
Frankenstein Meets the Wolfman written by Curt Siodmak
Der Fuehrer’s Face story by Joe Grant and Dick Huemer
I Walked With a Zombie written by Curt Siodmak and Ardel Wray
The Seventh Victim written by Charles O’Neal and DeWitt Bodeen
Super-Rabbit written by Tedd Pierce

Best Professional Editor: Short Form

Winner:
TBD

Other Finalists:
John W. Campbell
Oscar J. Friend
Mary Gnaedinger
Dorothy McIlwraith
Raymond A. Palmer
Donald A. Wollheim

Best Professional Artist

Winner:
TBD

Other Finalists:
Hannes Bok
Margaret Brundage
Virgil Finlay
Antoine de Saint-Exupéry
J. Allen St. John
William Timmins

Best Fanzine

Winner:
TBD

Other Finalists:
Fantasy News edited by William S. Sykora
Futurian War Diges edited by J. Michael Rosenblum
The Phantagraph edited by Donald A. Wollheim
Voice of the Imagi-Nation edited by Jack Erman and Myrtle Douglas
YHOS edited by Art Widner
Le Zombie edited by Wilson “Bob” Tucker

Best Fan Writer

Winner:
TBD

Other Finalists:
Forrest J. Ackerman
Myrtle Douglas
Jack Speer
Wilson “Bob” Tucker
Art Widner
Donald A. Wollheim

Go to previous year's finalists: 1943 (awarded in 2018)
Go to subsequent year's finalists: 1946 (awarded in 1996)

What Are the Hugo Awards?

1944 Retro Hugo Award Longlist     Book Award Reviews     Home

Monday, April 15, 2019

Musical Monday - Kiss On My List by Hall and Oates


#1 on the Billboard Hot 100: April 11, 1981 through April 25, 1981.
#1 on the Cash Box Top 100: The week of April 11, 1981.
#1 on the U.K. Chart: Never.

Kiss On My List was the first big hit for Hall and Oates in the 1980s. It wasn't their first big hit overall - they had had a number one hit in the mid-1970s with Rich Girl, but their career had foundered for a half decade until their breakout in 1981 with this song. This was the first of a string of hits by the duo that served to set the tone for popular music over the first half of the 1980s.

Hall and Oates weren't the first identifiably "1980s rock stars" - that distinction probably belongs to Blondie, but they were the first group to establish a "1980s sound". While Blondie's output was eclectic, ranging from punk to disco to new wave to rap, Hall and Oates helped define what direction music would go in the post-disco post-punk era with a smooth and soulful urban almost jazz-influenced sound conducive to a laid back kind of cool that involved wearing animal print suits and skinny ties.

That said, in 1981 it certainly didn't seem like this would be the band that set the tone for music for the next couple of years. Popular music in 1981 was a chaotic swirl of indecision as the music from the 1970s, most notably disco and punk, fell from favor and was replaced by a mélange of styles that were going in a thousand different directions. That Hall and Oates would win the battle for a place at the helm of pop music was not a foregone conclusion in 1981, but it is what happened, strange as it may seem.

Previous Musical Monday: This Ole House by Shakin' Stevens
Subsequent Musical Monday: Making Your Mind Up by Bucks Fizz

Previous #1 on the Billboard Hot 100: Rapture by Blondie
Subsequent #1 on the Billboard Hot 100: Morning Train (Nine to Five) by Sheena Easton

Previous #1 on the Cash Box Top 100: Rapture by Blondie
Subsequent #1 on the Cash Box Top 100: Morning Train (Nine to Five) by Sheena Easton

List of #1 Singles from the Billboard Hot 100 for 1980-1989
List of #1 Singles from the Cash Box Top 100 for 1980-1989
List of #1 Singles on the U.K. Chart for 1980-1989

Hall and Oates     1980s Project     Musical Monday     Home

Saturday, April 13, 2019

Book Blogger Hop April 12th - April 18th: Area Code 302 Is the One and Only Area Code for the State of Delaware


Jen at Crazy for Books restarted her weekly Book Blogger Hop to help book bloggers connect with one another, but then couldn't continue, so she handed the hosting responsibilities off to Ramblings of a Coffee Addicted Writer. The only requirements to participate in the Hop are to write and link a post answering the weekly question and then visit other blogs that are also participating to see if you like their blog and would like to follow them.

This week Billy asks: When reading a series, do you re-read the previous book/s before reading the newly released book?

I don't even have enough time to read all the new books I want to read, let alone enough time to go back and reread all of the books in a series every time a new volume comes out. To be perfectly honest, I usually resolve this issue by not starting to read a series until all of the books have been published, and then I read them all at once. I usually buy the books when they are released, but often don't get around to reading them until much later. This has the odd side-effect of my owning several series that are in various stages of completion from which I have not yet read a single installment.

Oh well. I own more books than I will ever conceivably be able to read in my lifetime, so why should books that make up a series be any different? So it goes.


Book Blogger Hop     Home

Thursday, April 11, 2019

2019 Hugo Award Finalists

Location: Dublin 2019 - An Irish Worldcon in Dublin, Ireland.

Comments: The first thing to know about this year's Hugo finalists is that for the first time in four years, N.K. Jemisin will not win a Hugo, but only because as far as I can tell, she did not write anything in 2018 eligible to get nominated onto this list. Even without Jemisin, this year's list of finalists is fantastic, with excellent nominees up and down the list in every category.

This year's finalists are notable for two reasons. The first is the introduction of the Best Art Book category, more or less splitting that category off from the Best Related Work category where such works had previously been relegated. The other is the nomination in the Best Related Work category of An Archive of Our Own and The Mexicanx Initiative Experience at Worldcon 76, neither of which are traditional finalists in this category. One might suspect that the first of these two events is at least partially responsible for opening up the field so that the second could occur. This sort of development is among the primary reasons why this is truly a great time to be a science fiction fan.

Best Novel

Winner:
TBD

Finalists:
The Calculating Stars by Mary Robinette Kowal
Record of a Spaceborn Few by Becky Chambers
Revenant Gun by Yoon Ha Lee
Space Opera by Catherynne M. Valente
Spinning Silver by Naomi Novik
Trail of Lightning by Rebecca Roanhorse

Best Novella

Winner:
TBD

Finalists:
Artificial Condition by Martha Wells
Beneath the Sugar Sky by Seanan McGuire
Binti: The Night Masquerade by Nnedi Okorafor
The Black God’s Drums by P. Djèlí Clark
Gods, Monsters, and the Lucky Peach by Kelly Robson
The Tea Master and the Detective by Aliette de Bodard

Best Novelette

Winner:
TBD

Finalists:
If at First You Don’t Succeed, Try, Try Again by Zen Cho
The Last Banquet of Temporal Confections by Tina Connolly
Nine Last Days on Planet Earth by Daryl Gregory
The Only Harmless Great Thing by Brooke Bolander
The Thing About Ghost Stories by Naomi Kritzer
When We Were Starless by Simone Heller

Best Short Story

Winner:
TBD

Finalists:
The Court Magician by Sarah Pinsker
The Rose MacGregor Drinking and Admiration Society by T. Kingfisher
The Secret Lives of the Nine Negro Teeth of George Washington by P. Djèlí Clark
STET by Sarah Gailey
The Tale of the Three Beautiful Raptor Sisters, and the Prince Who Was Made of Meat by Brooke Bolander
A Witch’s Guide to Escape: A Practical Compendium of Portal Fantasies by Alix E. Harrow

Best Related Work

Winner:
TBD

Finalists:
Archive of Our Own a project of the Organization for Transformative Works
Astounding: John W. Campbell, Isaac Asimov, Robert A. Heinlein, L. Ron Hubbard, and the Golden Age of Science Fiction by Alec Nevala-Lee
The Hobbit Duology, a documentary in three parts, written and edited by Lindsay Ellis and Angelina Meehan
An Informal History of the Hugos: A Personal Look Back at the Hugo Awards, 1953-2000 by Jo Walton
www.mexicanxinitiative.com: The Mexicanx Initiative Experience at Worldcon 76 by Julia Rios, Libia Brenda, Pablo Defendini, and John Picacio
Ursula K. Le Guin: Conversations on Writing by Ursula K. Le Guin with David Naimon

Best Graphic Story

Winner:
TBD

Finalists:
Abbott written by Saladin Ahmed; art by Sami Kivelä
Black Panther: Long Live the King written by Nnedi Okorafor and Aaron Covington; art by André Lima Araújo, Mario Del Pennino, and Tana Ford
Monstress, Volume 3: Haven written by Marjorie Liu; art by Sana Takeda
On a Sunbeam by Tillie Walden
Paper Girls, Volume 4 written by Brian K. Vaughan; art by Cliff Chiang
Saga, Volume 9 written by Brian K. Vaughan; art by Fiona Staples

Best Dramatic Presentation: Long Form

Winner:
TBD

Finalists:
Annihilation
Avengers: Infinity War
Black Panther
A Quiet Place
Sorry to Bother You
Spider-Man: Into the Spider-Verse

Best Dramatic Presentation: Short Form

Winner:
TBD

Finalists:
Doctor Who: Demons of the Punjab
Dirty Computer by Janelle Monáe and Chuck Lightning
The Expanse: Abaddon’s Gate
The Good Place: Janet(s)
The Good Place: Jeremy Bearimy
Doctor Who: Rosa

Best Professional Editor: Short Form

Winner:
TBD

Finalists:
Neil Clarke
Gardner Dozois
Lee Harris
Julia Rios
Lynne M. Thomas and Michael Damian Thomas
E. Catherine Tobler

Best Professional Editor: Long Form

Winner:
TBD

Finalists:
Sheila E. Gilbert
Anne Lesley Groell
Beth Meacham
Diana Pho
Gillian Redfearn
Navah Wolfe

Best Professional Artist

Winner:
TBD

Finalists:
Galen Dara
Jaime Jones
Victo Ngai
John Picacio
Yuko Shimizu
Charles Vess

Best Semi-Prozine

Winner:
TBD

Finalists:
Beneath Ceaseless Skies editor-in-chief and publisher Scott H. Andrews
Fireside Magazine edited by Julia Rios, managing editor Elsa Sjunneson-Henry, social coordinator Meg Frank, special features editor Tanya DePass, founding editor Brian White, publisher and art director Pablo Defendini
FIYAH Magazine of Black Speculative Fiction executive editors Troy L. Wiggins and DaVaun Sanders, editors L.D. Lewis, Brandon O’Brien, Kaleb Russell, Danny Lore, and Brent Lambert
Shimmer publisher Beth Wodzinski, senior editor E. Catherine Tobler
Strange Horizons edited by Jane Crowley, Kate Dollarhyde, Vanessa Rose Phin, Vajra Chandrasekera, Romie Stott, Maureen Kincaid Speller, and the Strange Horizons Staff
Uncanny Magazine publishers/editors-in-chief Lynne M. Thomas and Michael Damian Thomas, managing editor Michi Trota, podcast producers Erika Ensign and Steven Schapansky, Disabled People Destroy Science Fiction Special Issue editors-in-chief Elsa Sjunneson-Henry and Dominik Parisien

Best Fanzine

Winner:
TBD

Finalists:
Galactic Journey founder Gideon Marcus, editor Janice Marcus
Journey Planet edited by Team Journey Planet
Lady Business edited by Ira, Jodie, KJ, Renay, and Susan
nerds of a feather, flock together edited by Joe Sherry, Vance Kotrla, and The G
Quick Sip Reviews edited by Charles Payseur
Rocket Stack Rank edited by Greg Hullender and Eric Wong

Best Fan Writer

Winner:
TBD

Finalists:
Foz Meadows
James Davis Nicoll
Charles Payseur
Elsa Sjunneson-Henry
Alasdair Stuart
Bogi Takács

Best Fan Artist

Winner:
TBD

Finalists:
Sara Felix
Grace P. Fong
Meg Frank
Ariela Housman
Likhain (Mia Sereno)
Spring Schoenhuth

Best Fancast

Winner:
TBD

Finalists:
Be the Serpent presented by Alexandra Rowland, Freya Marske and Jennifer Mace
The Coode Street Podcast presented by Jonathan Strahan and Gary K. Wolfe
Fangirl Happy Hour hosted by Ana Grilo and Renay Williams
Galactic Suburbia hosted by Alisa Krasnostein, Alexandra Pierce, and Tansy Rayner Roberts, produced by Andrew Finch
Our Opinions Are Correct hosted by Annalee Newitz and Charlie Jane Anders
The Skiffy and Fanty Show produced by Jen Zink and Shaun Duke, hosted by the Skiffy and Fanty Crew

Best Series

Winner:
TBD

Finalists:
The Centenal Cycle by Malka Older
The Laundry Files by Charles Stross
Machineries of Empire by Yoon Ha Lee
The October Daye series by Seanan McGuire
The Universe of Xuya by Aliette de Bodard
Wayfarers by Becky Chambers

Best Art Book

Winner:
TBD

Finalists:
The Books of Earthsea: The Complete Illustrated Edition illustrated by Charles Vess, written by Ursula K. Le Guin
Daydreamer’s Journey: The Art of Julie Dillon by Julie Dillon
Dungeons & Dragons Art & Arcana: A Visual History by Michael Witwer, Kyle Newman, Jon Peterson, and Sam Witwer
Spectrum 25: The Best in Contemporary Fantastic Art edited by John Fleskes
Spider-Man: Into the Spider-Verse – The Art of the Movie by Ramin Zahed
Tolkien: Maker of Middle-Earth edited by Catherine McIlwaine

John W. Campbell Award for Best New Writer

Winner:
TBD

Finalists:
Katherine Arden
S.A. Chakraborty
R.F. Kuang
Jeannette Ng
Vina Jie-Min Prasad
Rivers Solomon

Lodestar Award for Best Young Adult Book

Winner:
TBD

Finalists:
The Belles by Dhonielle Clayton
Children of Blood and Bone by Tomi Adeyemi
The Cruel Prince by Holly Black
Dread Nation by Justina Ireland
The Invasion by Peadar O’Guilin
Tess of the Road by Rachel Hartman

What Are the Hugo Awards?

Go to previous year's nominees: 2018
Go to subsequent year's nominees: 2020

2019 Hugo Award Longlist     Book Award Reviews     Home