I have a voting membership for the Hugos this year. Something I’ve meant to do for a while, but here I am, doing it finally. I’m going to Black Hat in a couple of weeks, and will be there at the deadline for voting. I’ve decided to put my choices up here not only for your, fair reader’s, edification, but also so I have somewhere to look up what I thought when I was actually reading the stuff.

If you’ve never voted before, the Hugos use the same AV system that the British public soundly rejected this May: namely that you have to rank your preferences, and if your number one gets voted off, your number 2 gets counted. This has made me think long and hard about what I actually like, which in the end is a very good thing indeed. So, without further ado, here is my ranking for SS:

1: The Things – Peter Watts
2: Ponies – Kij Johnson
3: For Want of a Nail – Mary Robinette Kowal
4: Amaryllis – Carrie Vaughn

I find this ranking almost arbitrary. The first three were fairly strong. Amaryllis, I actually had to reopen to see what it was about. In the end, I opted for Watts story first because I found that it really explored the idea of the mind space behind the monster, and I enjoyed how its thoughts juxtaposed against the backdrop of the original story. Ponies I liked because of its loss of innocence, its echoing of The Lottery, and its ability to say so much with so few words. Nail was also good, and I feel bad having it in third place, but it didn’t strike me as hard as the first two, so there you go.

All links above lead to the stories, so you can make your own judgments.