Monday, February 28, 2022

(Red) Dragon Awards

Guess what everybody, it's that time of year again... 

Time to have yet another Dragon Awards discussion!


If you’ve been here a while, you know I often talked about the Dragon Awards, from January to July. They’re the largest fan-voted awards out there. It’s free to vote on it. You don’t even have to register attending the convention.

It also gives me an excuse to talk about books at large. Not that I really need an excuse.

If you want to think that way, the Dragon Awards a front in the culture war. Nerd culture is, surprisingly, important. If you don’t believe me, look up “GamerGate” sometime. It was largely just a matter of calling out gaming journalism for being, well, crap. While GG has been out of action for years (at least seven years, IIRC) you’d think that it was a massive conspiracy theory on par with the Illuminati. It left a mark. You’d think the line was that “the Geek shall inherit the Earth.”

It could be worse. It could be Sad Puppies. And that’s another kennel for another time.

One of the reasons I even go into the cultural aspect of things is that, in 2020, no one cared about the Dragons. I can’t imagine why. Something about the Beer Plague, probably. So, that front was ignored entirely.

The dirt bags interested in taking over every aspect of American life moved in. And while DragonCon is not a bastion of the Right (just look at the parade of Handmaiden cosplayers a few years ago) it has always been a place where everyone can show up, do their own thing, and most importantly, be left alone.

People are trying to make it not that. Then 2020 became… a clusterfuck, really.

So yes, we need to push back.

Voting in the Dragons is a way of making sure that we can all push back without any real investment … aside from a little bit of time.

And if you want to vote, trust me, I’m going to be investing WAY more time than you are.

Nominate here

Yes, the nominations are already open! I'm not even joking.

Yes, I have a list of who I’m voting for. Here, for you folks, I’m also going to give you my reason for why I’m voting for each, and why I think it’s important.

But first…

My thought process

I'm not nominating anyone who already has an award. Most of those who have won already have the attitude of “Oh, I don’t need more dust collectors.”

I’m leaving out Big Name Authors. Frankly, if you're Jim Butcher or a Baen author, you don't need my help.

If I leave the categories blank, it means I STILL got nothing.

You may wonder why I’m not having a full, massive, months-long discussion, gathering up every eligible author and product.

Been there, done that. It turned into an unmanageable mess. Authors came in a hit and run to my posts, screamed "ME ME ME" in the comments, then dropped links to their book and ran. There was no discussion. That’s it.

I seriously want a discussion if I can get one. Why do this? Because if I don’t try one, who will? And the nominations **are already open.** Believe it or not.

Voting happens here: 

Please remember that eligible nominees came out AFTER 7/1/21, up 6/30/22. So double check before throwing something into the ring. I’m starting with who I’m voting for at the moment. Unless I have no other option, if someone has an award I’m not giving them more dust collectors

But then again, if you’re Jim Butcher, you don’t need my help.

So... here... we ... go.

Best SF

White Ops


It could also be Military SF, but since it’s a space opera, it’s genre fluid.

Then again, I’m so far behind on my TBR pile, this is one of the few SF novels that I know came out in the eligibility window.

Yes, for the record, White Ops is mine. I’d like to boast that I deserve it. I’m the best out there. I covet the shiny award, blah blah blah.

But I also can’t name you a damn thing in SF that came out in the eligibility window.

Best Fantasy (Paranormal)

My personal pick is The Dragon and his Wrath, by Dan Humphreys.

Yes, this this is an Urban Fantasy novel.

Why can’t the Dragons please get one lousy UF category?

We can call it the Jim Butcher award.

Best YA

Sworn to the Light, the Avatar Wizard Book 1, by Denton Salle.

My Review.

Sworn to the Light: The Avatar Wizard - Book 1 by [Denton Salle]

Good God, this was just plain FUN. I do recommend you at least check out the review over here. It’s where I did most of my gushing.

Best Military SFF Novel

Karl Gallagher, Seize What’s Held Dear.

My review.

Imagine if Honor Harrington were fighting 1984 and not the French Revolution. You’d get this. I don’t think I’m exaggerating how good this is in the review.

Best Alternate History Novel

The Romanov Rescue, by Tom Kratman, Kacey Ezell, et al.

This review is incoming, but it’s Tom and Kacey. Are we really surprised that it’s entertaining?

Best Media Tie-In Novel

I just found out that Timothy Zahn released a Thrawn book last year, called Lesser Evil. I’ll read it and get back to you.

Best Horror Novel

Summer Storm, Morgon Newquist

Best Comic Book

I’ve been told that "Finnian and the Seven Mountains #5" is good. No, I haven’t read it. I haven't read a comic book since Straczynski left Amazing Spider Man nearly 20 years ago.

However, I’m told that Demon Slayer outsold the entire American Comic book industry last year. And the English run finished in in August 2021. So it’s eligible.

Offical Demon Slayer DvD Cover : DemonSlayerAnime

Best Graphic Novel

I got nothing. [To be clear, it’s: an illustrated story in traditional comic book format that is at least 36 pages long and has been first released in print or electronic format] 

I’m told Kamen America is good.

Kamen America, Volume 4: Scars and Bars by [Timothy Lim, Mark Pellegrini]

Best SFF TV Series, TV or Internet

I hope someone comes up with something, or Disney shills are going to just vote in Book of Boba Fett, and everyone seems to hate that... except for when it's an episode of Mandalorian.

I’m not a fan of what they’ve done to The Witcher.

I couldn’t get into The Expanse.

However, I’m told that Resident Alien is pretty good.

Best SFF Movie

While I haven’t seen anything that came out last year, I’m told the following were good.

  • Ghostbusters: Afterlife?
  • Dune?
  • Spider-Man: No Way Home?

Best Science Fiction or Fantasy PC / Console Game

I have no idea, I have a stack of video games over a foot high that I haven’t touched.

Halo: Infinite, 343 Games?

Demon Slayer?

And not for the "I have no f***ing idea" categories.

Best SFF...

  • Mobile Game?

  • Board Game?

  • Miniatures / Collectible Card / Role-Playing Game?

Good luck with those, I have no clue.

So that’s it. Those are my best guesses for right now. I'd throw in hashtags or tag people, but most of the ones who I'd want to bring in either don't care, or are so self-aggrandizing, it wouldn’t be a discussion, it'd be nothing but "ME ME ME."

Trust me, been there, done that. Never again.

So if you want to start voting, you can.

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