The Hugos and The Raven Tower


Kermit flailing happily

The less said about the actual ceremony the better, and besides lots of people have already said good words about it, and do listen to them. But the results were fabulous! The results were always going to be fabulous, because LOOK AT THAT FINALIST LIST they are all awesome.

2019 was a particularly strong year for novels. There were lots of fabulous debuts, lots of amazing new work from writers who readers were already familiar with. There were way more excellent books than there could ever be places in that list of finalists. There always are, of course. There are always works on the longlist that missed out on the shortlist by a few votes, or maybe more than a few votes but that doesn’t mean they didn’t equally deserve to get the recognition that comes with being shortlisted. But that’s legit, right? It’s how things go. That’s just how the cookie crumbles.

I’ve had a taste of that cookie quite a few times now. It is, let me tell you, one delicious cookie. And when the email came telling me that The Raven Tower was a finalist for the Hugo Award, I thought of the books in that longlist, how often I’d had a bite of this cookie, and how many of the amazing books from 2019 were debuts, and/or were books that, when I’d read them, my first thought was, Oh, this should be on the Hugo ballot. More books than there were spots, for sure. And I realized that I could do something about that, at least in a small way.

And so I withdrew The Raven Tower from consideration.

Let me be perfectly clear–I was overwhelmed at the thought that so many readers felt The Raven Tower deserved to be a Hugo finalist. I have been treasuring that for months. And as I’m sure we all know, these have been months during which such treasures have become extremely important.

I also want to be clear that this is not any sort of permanent decision on my part. I make no promises about withdrawing anything in the future. If I am ever so fortunate as to have a work reach the shortlist again, and I see what seems to me a good reason to withdraw, I will. If I don’t, I won’t. It is, after all, one of the sweetest, most delicious cookies around!

It’s just, I thought I might spread that happiness around some this time out, and so I did the little bit I could.

I want to thank all the writers who had amazing books published last year. And I thank, as always, my readers, who are wonderful and fabulous and awesome. You all make life brighter and better.