One of the comments on the Fan Writer Hugo Controversy croggled me sufficiently that I want to quote it here. I'm not meaning to pick on the writer, who comments here and is a BASFA member, but this one sort of surprised me:
...my reading of the WSFS constitution's section on the Hugo awards, taken in its entirety, leads me to believe the purpose of the Fan Writer award is to recognize non-professional sci-fi writers.Wow. What I'm wondering if this is a widespread opinion -- that "Fan Writer" is taken by a significant number of people as "non-professional, fan-written science fiction." Of course, it's not -- "Fan" doesn't mean "Amateur" in our field; it means "enthusiast," which is not the same thing, and that's why one can be a fan and a pro simultaneously. Nor is "Fan Writer" intended as a category aimed at recognizing "fan fiction." Fan writing is writing about science fiction, fantasy, and fandom. All of the people nominated in that category (and everyone who has been nominated in that category in my memory) have been nominated for their writing about the field, not because of any fiction they've written.