November 11th, 2019

Hugo Logo

The Hugo Awards Are Weird

A lot of the questions that come to the Hugo Awards web site can be broadly classed in the following two categories:

1. I want to submit my work to your Awards Committee. (Variations include questions like "What is the entry fee for your Award?")

2. Your Board of Directors should add [category] to your Awards.

We get these even though our web site explains that the answers are:

1. You can't. (Linked right off the top menu under the single word "Submissions.")

2. It doesn't work that way. (Linked from "The Awards/Changing the Rules.")

I guess I shouldn't be surprised. Most people probably think that the Hugo Awards are run by the Board of Directors of a Big Corporation with a Big Boss who decides who wins and what the categories are, because that's how all other awards with which they're familiar work. Or at least they think they're familiar with them.

We recently got a query from a publicist behind a work that is effectively a business textbook in graphic story/comic book form. (Sounds find to me; I much enjoyed a calculus textbook in comic form when I was in high school.) It took more than one reply to convince them that A. There was no submission process. B. There was no submission fee, and C. Just because your work is in comic book format doesn't make it eligible for Best Graphic Story, unless you're saying that your work is science fiction and fantasy, which seems unlikely considering the way you're pitching it.