Concerning the Hugos

Since the Hugo nominations for this year were announced, I’ve received a surprising amount of mail on the subject. So far it has ranged from friendly consolation to frothy outrage over the fact that I’m not one of the contenders for the “best novel” category.

I won’t lie. I was hoping for a nomination. It would have been extremely cool. What’s more, it would have given me an excuse to wear a tuxedo at Worldcon. I like wearing a tux.

Alas, it was not meant to be. But I did want to thank everyone for their kind words, the messages y’all have sent have been very sweet, and they have eased the sting.

But what I realized just today is that each of these e-mails I’ve received shows people at different stages of the grieving process. Take a look. (All items in quotes are from actual letters or comments left on the blog.)

1. Denial. “I can’t believe you weren’t nominated.”

I can. The truth is, I’m really, really new to the scene. I’ve been a published author for almost exactly one year. And while it’s been a great year, most people don’t even know I exist. That makes it hard to win an award that’s based on a popular vote.

2. Anger. That’s bullshit that you’re not on there…seriously.”Dude, you were totally fucking robbed on the Hugo nods.” “I feel like punching someone in the neck about this!”

There were a lot of these. However, please do not punch anyone in the neck on my behalf. Remember: Anger, fear, aggression… the dark side of the Hugos are they.

3. Bargaining. “Is there a write-in option for the Hugos? I would have voted, but I was sur [sic] that you were a shoe in.”

Thank you, but there’s nothing to be done at this point. The nominations themselves are exclusively write-in, but voting for the the award itself is not. Even then, only people who are attending Worldcon get to vote in the Hugos.

4. Depression. “The more I learn how these things work, the more I realize I have no respect for awards that are given out by popular vote.”

Well, you know what they say about Democracy. It’s the worst form of government except for every other one that’s been tried….

5. Acceptance. “Let’s hope that The Wise Man’s Fear will be of the same quality and that it’ll receive the nomination TNOTW clearly deserved.”

I hope so too.

For those of you who are still stuck in the anger or bargaining stages, you could burn off a little of that energy in a productive way if you want. Namely, by casting your ballot in the Locus awards over here.

The Locus awards are a little different in that anyone can vote, not just a specific group of people, like the Nebulas or the Hugos. Plus they’ve been around for over thirty years, and are fairly prestigious in their own right.

Just make sure you follow the directions on the page before you cast your ballot. Anyone can vote, but anonymous votes are tossed out. And while there are pull-down menus, you can also write in your own votes in each category.

My book is eligible for both the “Best Fantasy Novel” AND “Best First Novel.” Just in case you’re interested.

Later all,


Edit 9:45 PM: I’ve noticed a pleasant, but slightly unnerving trend in the comments on this note. While I’m flattered that people would vote for my book, I really hope that people aren’t just hopping over the Locus Ballot just to vote for me.

I tend to assume that the vast majority of the people that read this blog tend to enjoy a lot of fantasy and sci-fi. So what I’m really hoping is that you hop over to the Locus Ballot and vote for ALL your favorite books and stories of the last year. All of them. And if it turns out you like five other books better than mine… well… then tough shit for The Name of the Wind.

I know this probably goes without saying, and that most of you understood what I meant the first time around. But I’d rather make sure of it than come off as a dirty vote-grubbing whore.


This entry was posted in awards, fanmailBy Pat21 Responses


  1. suziko
    Posted April 1, 2008 at 1:11 PM | Permalink

    I cast my vote for you in the Locus awards. :) What’s with all the ultra-violent tendencies among a certain segment of your fan base? Biting testicles? Punching necks? I’m assuming they’re speaking hyperbolically, but geez, these people need to get some perspective.

  2. Kalligenia
    Posted April 1, 2008 at 1:28 PM | Permalink

    You have my vote, too.I can understand that you are still fairly new but it still would have been fantastic to see you nominated. I’m adept at reading the underlying mystical currents of blogs, though. You will one day. I see the ground quaking with your greatness and there will be an awesome eruption of Rothfuss throughout the world!Hmm… perhaps not the best choice for a metaphor. Uh… yeah… but I think I got my point across.

  3. Michael
    Posted April 1, 2008 at 1:28 PM | Permalink

    I also just casted my vote for you for the locus awards. You were not in the drop down list for best fantasy novel though, so i wrote you in.

  4. Judy
    Posted April 1, 2008 at 4:18 PM | Permalink

    Hi Pat – I, like the others before me, have voted for you on Locus. I have subscribed to the “every vote could be the winning vote” theory, as I have never voted for anything like this before. (Political elections, yes, not that this has seemed to do our country any good). I am hoping that something incredible comes of all of this – you most certainly deserve it!!!! {:o)

  5. Jordan R
    Posted April 1, 2008 at 6:17 PM | Permalink

    Well I will just state, as a way to come to terms with this travesty, that Peter Jackson (LOTR)didn’t get the big Oscar Nods (and wins) until the 3rd and final chapter (ROTK).There is hope….

  6. Pat
    Posted April 1, 2008 at 7:28 PM | Permalink

    Judy: Yeah. I’ve come to grips with not getting the nomination, but I’m almost afraid of seeing what the vote tally is. Usually it only takes 40-50 votes to get a nomination, so I think it will actually be harder if I just missed it by one or two votes…

  7. Anonymous
    Posted April 1, 2008 at 7:58 PM | Permalink

    I cast my vote for you in the Locus Awards. Least I could do for NOTW. Let’s hope you win.Troll

  8. Anonymous
    Posted April 1, 2008 at 9:28 PM | Permalink

    Voted for ya big guy… let me just say that I’m disappointed in the lack of April fools joke on your blog, perhaps I’ll check your facebook out and see if you did anything hilarious there, I mean ok you write amazing books and all but you also have to keep your fans entertained with crazy antics as well! lol

  9. caranorn
    Posted April 1, 2008 at 10:35 PM | Permalink

    Voted and voted;-)

  10. gillen033
    Posted April 2, 2008 at 2:02 AM | Permalink

    I’ll only vote for you if you promise me that the story will continue on after the “chronicles”…haha ok kidding, I already voted. You are by far one of my favorie authors. I’m going to check out the John Campell nominees (the fantasy ones at least) to see if these books are really all that good…good luck in the Locus!

  11. Kendall
    Posted April 2, 2008 at 5:29 AM | Permalink

    To clarify: Only people who are <>members<> (not necessarily <>attending<>) of Worldcon can vote.Just bought the hardback with the new cover, a few days ago–I look forward to reading it! :-D Your book’s the first strong recommendation I got from a colleague who happens to like 99% of the books I recommend to her. So I’m pretty sure I’ll enjoy what she recommends back….

  12. arcaneja
    Posted April 2, 2008 at 11:51 AM | Permalink

    Totally not related, but I saw the ad for the PaperBack on Real Life Comics ( Genius.

  13. Anonymous
    Posted April 2, 2008 at 2:16 PM | Permalink

    Pat,You are neither dirty nor vote grubbing.Nuff Said,Troll

  14. lovesmasher
    Posted April 2, 2008 at 6:41 PM | Permalink

    Heh, I just noticed that you’re the prize for the Settlers of Catan tournament at OddCon this weekend.

  15. sienged
    Posted April 2, 2008 at 10:17 PM | Permalink

    Your not really like a dirt vote grubbing whore, But more like a crisp charismatic NOTW on a side note, Not W. sounds like a democratic slogan.

  16. doug
    Posted April 2, 2008 at 11:38 PM | Permalink

    Do you really need an excuse to wear a tux at WorldCon? Just do it!

    Posted April 3, 2008 at 1:11 AM | Permalink

    fuckme..I’ll never smile again.

  18. Ben
    Posted April 3, 2008 at 2:48 AM | Permalink

    Pat,Just wanted to let you know that Amazon finally changed my pre-order of The Wise Man’s Fear to let me know that it would not, in fact, be arriving at my house in the next week or so.

  19. unique_stephen
    Posted April 4, 2008 at 2:55 AM | Permalink

    Ah, man, I can’t believe it, it makes me so angry those bozos robbed you like this; surly there is some way we can write to them and get them to admit your book – I’m sorry it turned out this, perhaps next time will be different.There I think I got the whole grieving process into one (bad) sentence.(btw – I voted for you)Rember – as Mugabe says – vote early and vote often.

  20. Kessallia
    Posted April 7, 2008 at 10:48 PM | Permalink

    Holy crap. I thought I read a lot, but apparently I am woefully ignorant of a great many writers! I think I’m going to use the nominated poll people to find my next read!

  21. Jeff Blair
    Posted April 8, 2008 at 1:41 AM | Permalink

    Pat (Can I call you Pat since we have never met?), I like it that you are promoting ALL Science Fiction and Fantasy books, not just your own. It makes me respect you even more. It also, perversely, makes me want to vote for you even more.

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