August 20th, 2018

Hugo Trophy

Worldcon 76 Day 4: The 2018 Hugo Awards Ceremony

Around 7 PM last night, I packed up my computer and headed for the Grand Ballroom. The good news is that there was a seat reserved for me. The bad news, sort of, was that I needed to get there early to get set up for the Hugo Awards web site coverage of the Hugo Awards ceremony.

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Susan de Guardiola joined me just before the ceremony started. She had been taking pictures in the pre-ceremony reception and was therefore able to illustrate our coverage with photos of finalists (and winners). She did a great job with this. She also would post the finalists, and I would post the winner once their name was announced. Cheryl joined us "from our studios in Darkest Wiltshire," which were especially dark because it was the wee hours of the morning when Cheryl had to be up to be our studio coordinator. Cheryl also managed posting the winners and the links to the results after the ceremony, taking a huge load off of me, for which I'm very grateful.

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When the lights went out at 11 PM, that was the sign that we really had to leave. I bade Susan good night, wandered around socializing with people for a few more minutes, then headed back for the barn.

Lisa was already in bed. She'd gone to Callahan's Place in the Exhibit Hall, where the live-stream was broadcast to the people there. She was rather annoyed that the base designers referred to an "unknown volunteer" who assembled the trophies, and that apparently there was someone who stood up in Callahan's and claimed to be that volunteer. Well, actually, Lisa was the person who did the assembly, back on Thursday. I announced that during our CoverItLive. Had we known this was going to be something in the ceremony script, we would have told them who deserved the credit.

Minor hiccups aside, I'm really happy with how the ceremony went. The audience liked it, most of the technical issues were overcome, and there are now a lot of happy Hugo (and other) award winners and less-happy-but-able-to-go-to-the-Hugo-Losers-Party finalists here in San Jose tonight.

I'm also happy that my first commitment on Monday, the final day of Worldcon 76, is not until 10:30 AM (instead of more like 8:30), and that we're not leaving San Jose until Wednesday, so we don't have to move out of the hotel tomorrow. Lisa doesn't even have to get out of bed because there's no WSFS meeting. I hope she's able to sleep in. Worldcon is rough on everyone, but she seems particularly zonked out.
Hugo Logo

Hugo Ceremony Video Sorted

Cheryl Morgan, representing the Hugo Awards Marketing Committee, contacted the BBC about the copyright block put on the 2018 Hugo Awards Ceremony, and was able to get to the right person in legal there who could sort it out and unblock it. I'm very grateful that she was able to get this cleared up overnight, so people who weren't able to watch the ceremony live (including possibly those people who claim that we must always schedule the ceremony for the convenience of people who live in the US Eastern Time Zone, sigh) can now watch the event.
Gavel of WSFS

Worldcon 76 Day 5: The Gavel Passes

All good things must come to an end, and Worldcon 76 was a Very Good Thing. Today the convention ended, and now we can look forward to next year's convention in Dublin, Ireland.

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Following the ceremony, I caught up to James, who claimed that the sounding block had shattered into multiple pieces, but he was just pulling my leg. The block was recovered (fortunately it didn't roll down under the stage, where retrieving it would have been difficult), and the Gavel of WSFS given to my safekeeping, as Dublin 2019 doesn't intend to use it for their meetings between now and the convention. I'm grateful that the trust me to keep it safe. I generally keep it with the ballot boxes sometimes given to my care.

A tentative membership count (subject to clean up after the convention) of warm bodies on site for Worldcon 76 is 5,440 individual human beings who attended the convention at some time during the five days of the event. There are a bunch of other numbers I have, but I'm waiting for the post-con clean up before reporting them to the WSFS Formulation of Long List Entries (FOLLE) committee.

After the closing ceremonies, there was one final panel (the last feedback session). Lisa caught up with me there as we'd been on separate paths most of the day. There I was able to give Kuma Bear something that Registration gave me this afternoon.

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Following the final panel, it was time to go. I wish I'd taken a final photo of the Hugo Award office, which was full of boxed-up Hugo Award trophies that we need to ship. One of my final WSFS tasks today was to get the correct person within the Worldcon 76 Committee in touch with the Hugo Administrators. I'm grateful to Dave McCarty and Susan de Guardiola for packing up a bunch of trophies and riding herd on them.

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Lisa and Scott had already eaten, but each had a small taco while I had a burrito at the taco shop beyond the Fairmont. We were joined by other convention membership who were also picking up dinner.

I've tried to talk with other members, particularly those I've not met before. I've spoken to a fair number of first-time convention attendees, and I mean first-time any SF con, just like how the 1984 Worldcon was my first. There were so many people having a good time. It gives me a huge lift to know how many people were here enjoying themselves. That's why those of us organizing these things do what we do.

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Shortly after the Induction Ceremony, Lisa and I called it a night and we returned to the Hilton. We initially had planned on sleeping in tomorrow, but we do have a breakfast appointment with friends, so it's time to try and get some sleep now.

I've completely left out the last WSFS function: the WSFS Mark Protection Committee meeting. I was re-elected as Chair of the MPC. There's other stuff on which to report, but it will have to wait until I have a few more brain cells to rub together.