So, Thursday was the first full day of WorldCon for me, and it was certainly jam-packed. I have only seen about half the art show and I feel like I’ve barely scratched the surface of the dealers’ room. I’ve attended a few panels and been on one (Trends in YA; the panel was fine; ably moderated by Christine Taylor-Butler), and I’ve certainly missed out on a lot of things I would have liked to attend because there’s no way to do everything. Missed Martha Wells’ reading, alas. I really wanted to go to that.
Anyway, the day wound up with the Retro Hugo Awards, which actually involved a cute, fun frame story about time travel and an alternate 1941 and a lost cell phone stolen by a Hydra agent. I didn’t expect that and it added a lot to the Awards.
Now let me share those results with you:
BEST NOVEL — Slan, A.E. Van Vogt
BEST NOVELLA — “If This Goes On…”, Robert A. Heinlein
BEST NOVELETTE — “The Roads Must Roll”, Robert A. Heinlein
BEST SHORT STORY — “Robbie”, Isaac Asimov
BEST GRAPHIC STORY — Batman #1
BEST DRAMATIC PRESENTATION, LONG FORM — Fantasia
BEST DRAMATIC PRESENTATION, SHORT FORM — Pinocchio
BEST EDITOR, SHORT FORM — John W. Campbell
BEST PROFESSIONAL ARTIST — Virgil Finlay
BEST FANZINE — Futuria Fantasia edited by Ray Bradbury
BEST FAN WRITER — Ray Bradbury
Isn’t it funny to think of Ray Bradbury as a fan writer rather than a pro? Anyway, I was pretty pleased with these results and only really surprised twice — I wanted “Tlön, Uqbar, Orbis Tertius” by Jorge Luis Borges to win, I expected Heinlein’s “Requiem” to win, and as you see, neither did. Incidentally, Borges’ story is available online as a pdf; if you haven’t read it — which I never had until it was nominated for this award — you really should.
And I was surprised by SLAN, too. I’ve never read that one. Maybe I will now, just out of curiosity. The most delightful moment was definitely when van Vogt’s granddaughter unexpectedly appeared to accept the award. Apparently impression the staff didn’t know she was present and she hadn’t prepared a formal acceptance speech, but her unscripted pleasure was unbeatably charming. Here’s a photo, taken with a Real Camera by Mike Schiffer, who was kind enough to share it with me: