Tales to Terrify, Rabid Puppies, Hugos, oh my!

I normally don’t talk about topical subjects here. I figure there’s enough of that stuff floating on the interwebz as it is and I don’t want to rally my voice to that pot. But this time I’ve been drawn into it. We all have.

Unless you’ve been living under a rock, you’d have heard about the Puppies, especially of the Rabid variety. If you haven’t heard of them, best to keep it that way. Abandon all hope yet who continue reading.

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I’m not going to go into that now – enough ink and pixels have been spilled in just that. No, I’m going to talk about something else, something that concerns me and the whole team at District of Wonders.

Tales to Terrify, our horror podcast, earned itself a Hugo nomination.

It was on the Puppy slate.

The Rabid Puppy slate.

Yeah.

There’s a lot of stuff going on about the nominations, the places/people on the slate, and if it’s worth withdrawing solely based on the fact that these items were on the slates. George R. R. Martin nails it brilliant over on his blog where he says that withdrawing is the absolutely last thing anyone should do. It’ll give a certain glorified troll power and one sane person wants to do that.

On that same note, sending a Noah Ward (no-award, that is) nuke to anything on the slate as well? Also insane. Because Mad Max: Fury Road, Star Wars, Stephen King, Neil Gaiman, etc, were on the slate, it means we should punish them with a No Award, even though we’d have voted for them anyway? Beyond insane. Again, John Scazli, George R. R. Martin and others nail this far better than I ever could, check out their words on the matter.

But coming back to Tales to Terrify, the entire team has found ourselves in a very difficult position, none more so than Stephen, Scott, Philip and Laura. We’re in the middle of a mud fight we didn’t know we’d be dragged into. And it sucks.

But something has got to be done.

We’ve written out a letter for Tales to Terrify, distancing ourselves from the Rabid Puppies and their mangy jaws. You can find it over here. Please give it a read and share it around. It’s important people know we’re not a part of this mess and that we had no idea we were on the slate.

I’m not going to lie when I say this wasn’t easy. All the editors at Tales to Terrify were gutted – Stephen wasn’t able to sleep last night and Scott mentioned that he felt like he’d been kicked in the stomach. We hate the fact that we’ve been caught up in this. But we’re not going to pull out. It’s not about us. It’s not about hiding in a corner and waiting for it all to blow over. It’s about fandom as a whole. It’s about telling the Rabid Puppies that their bullying tactics are not okay. That we’re not going to dance to their tune. If we withdrew, we’d be telling them that they can do this every year and to everyone.

It’s a long, bitter and bumpy road ahead, and every bit helps. We’re prepared for the criticism, the smearing, and negative attention and whatever else comes with it. Because we refuse to give Day an inch and because we want to play it straight. Whatever happens, we’re standing our ground. We feel we’ve got something of worth going over at Tales to Terrify, and we’re not going to let the Rabid Puppies ruin that. We owe it to fandom. We owe it to the hundreds of authors, narrators, editors and fans we’ve had the privilege of having on the show. We want their work and their contributions to mean something. We’re not letting Day and his band of semi-literate misfits destroy that.

Sympathies to anyone and everyone caught up in this nonsense. It sucks harder than a baby whale. Amoung other things.

Stiff drinks all around.

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