Tentative Schedule

Here is my first pass at a schedule for the focus weeks during Recommendation Season.

Focus Week Schedule (tentative)

Oct 18 – Best Novel
Oct 25 – The John W. Campbell Award
Nov 1 –  Best Related Work
Nov 8 –  Best Editor (Long Form)
Nov 15 – Best Fan Writer
Nov 22 – Best Novella
Nov 29 – Best Semiprozine
Dec 6 – Best Novelette
Dec 13 – Best Dramatic Presentation (Short Form)
Dec 20 – Break
Dec 27 – Best Dramatic Presentation (Long Form)
Jan 3 – Best Editor (Short Form)
Jan 10 – Best Short Story
Jan 17 – Best Graphic Story
Jan 24 – Best Fancast
Jan 31 – Best Fanzine
Feb 7 – Best Professional Artist
Feb 14 – Best Fan Artist
Feb 21 – Late Arrivals
Feb 28 – Late Arrivals Week 2?

My thinking was as follows:

  • Lead with Best Novel. Good to start with a big one (many would argue *the* big one) to get as much interest as early as possible.
  • Related to that, have categories that might be more time consuming nearer the front to give more time for reading recommendations you like. So novel, definitely early. The (non-Hugo) Campbell Award for New Writer have early since it’s about people who may have several works, including novels. Same for Best Editor Long Form.
  • Mix it up some. This is my randomly just kind of adding things to dates by feel, ineffable guide.
  • Not have all of the fan awards at the end – although I’m not sure I satisfied that one well. I worried that with things like Best Novel, Campbell, and various prose categories at the beginning, it might fizzle more at the end with less interest. However, there is also the fact that the later half will be during actual nomination season. So there might be more interest overall during January and February than November and December, so it might be a wash.
  • I did add both artist categories at the end. The only reason for this is that, unlike, say novels, zines, or even short stories, evaluating what artists’ works you like and don’t can be pretty quick. We can be such visual creatures, we can seem to judge visual creative works faster than written. So leave the quickest for the end, I figured.
  • I left a break for Christmas/other December holidays, both because I will personally be traveling to visit family quite a bit then and because I’m a firm believer in breaks to rest and recharge.
  • Finally, I added a week or two at the end for works that come out in November or December after their focus weeks and things people simply thought of later. Might do “focus days” or something here and combine some categories. We will see.
  • Edited to add: Also, I went for mid-October to end of February because I wanted to finish before March so that there was time to check out things that caught your eye during recommendations, plus 1 week per category including the (not a Hugo) Campbell. So that pushed it to mid-October. We could shift it a couple weeks and have the Late Arrivals week or two in March and start November 1 (which was my original intent until I did the math).

Thoughts? Opinions? This seem workable? What should be moved where?

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7 thoughts on “Tentative Schedule”

  1. Erg… more I think about it – what about Campbell (since it’s not-a-Hugo) end of October as sort of preview, and then Nov 1 to Feb 27 work through the Hugo categories? It fits into the months nicely as November-February, and the orderly part of my brain likes Nov-Feb being the Hugo Recommendation Season. Then have Late Arrivals in the first week of March?

    I just don’t want to cut it too close since I don’t know when nominations will be closed. Suppose I should contact MidAmeriCon and see if they have it decided yet or not.

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  2. re the Campbell, I know that in a few past years, M. David Blake has assembled a “Campbellian Anthology” with the works of many eligible writers. I think it’s generally come out in January or so. If it will be available again next year, it might be good to wait for that.

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  3. Great idea! I will wait and see if there are other ideas and comments as well, and then post an updated draft of the schedule on Monday.

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  4. You might consider moving at least some of Fanzine, both Artist categories, Fancast, Fan Writer, and Semi-prozine up a bit – I think, in all cases, there should be enough available samples of works to at least start the discussion in the Fall without leaving too many people/works out. I say this because I have the concern about the Novel, Novella, Novelette and Short Story categories being discussed before all the work is in (I do know you have latecomers categories scheduled, but it’s a bit of a disservice to a great story that comes out in December to be relegated to a catch-up post*).

    Otherwise, I like the idea and will be following this blog semi-obsessively come the Fall.

    *Unless with the catch-up posts you amend the original postings for Novel, etc.

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    1. Good points. Yeah, some of the “body of work” sort of categories like the ‘zines, Fan Writer, etc. there will be a lot of samples throughout the year and could start earlier. It’d be great to start in January for everything, but with wanting to devote a week to each, it’s just not possible.

      When I rework this, I will spread the “Best Story of Certain Length” categories out some. I worry about moving Best Novel into 2016 since if there is several novels that sound appealing, there is less time to get them read. But I will ponder it. Maybe since I’m planning on weekday round-ups, we could have something like Best Novel round-ups be every Saturday and Short Story every Sunday since I’m sure there will be no shortage of those. Feel kind of weird making those special when they should be weighted like any other Hugo, but in reality, Best Novel will surely get a lot of focus and discussion, and Short Stories are so plentiful that with some focus, there will be no shortage of them to discuss either. Novellas and novelettes, at least from my experience, tend to be rarer, so I don’t see recommendations being as overwhelming as the other two.

      Thank you for the ideas and I will keep pondering.

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  5. One other suggestion: Move best Fancast to either the week before Christmas or right before another heavy travel period – If people tell me the week before Thanksgiving (American) about a bunch of good podcasts to load up on my iPod, I’ll listen to them while stuck in an airport!

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