Friday, August 21, 2009

A World Class Geek, But I Mean That In A Good Way

John Scalzi is a professional writer/blogger who has a ten year old blog he calls Whatever. He has just won a HUGO for a book of his best Whatever entries entitled: Your Hate Mail Will be Graded: A Decade of Whatever, 1998-2008.

HUGOS are awards presented to people who write SCI FI novels. Scalzi already got an award a year or two ago when he was acknowledged as the best new SCI FI writer for his novel, Old Man's War.

Since blogs tend not to be science fiction, and, unless I'm living in an alternative universe, oh wait, given the name of my blog, maybe I am, so nevermind.

Regardless, I was curious about what SCI FI category an award for a book of not exactly SCI FI blog entries might fit into. So I checked. Here's what I found:

[DRUM ROLL] The Category Is: Best Related Book.

I'm assuming RELATED means this particular HUGO award is given to a SCI FI writer who has written a successful SCI FI novel and then decides to write about something else. Like grading hate mail. In both instances, writing took place and a book was the result. So there's a relationship, but it's like calling your mom's boyfriend "Uncle Joe." Unless, of course, Scalzi really and truly wrote enough blog entries about science fiction to turn them into a book, always a possiblity.

Obviously I haven't read it. I'm only contemplating it vis a vis the award and my knowledge of Scalzi's blog, which I have read. It is filled with many subjects I would never consider SCI FI-able.

So why, then, am I now going to provide a link to an entry in a completely different blog he writes for? Here again, because it's RELATED. It's writing. It's a blog. It's about something science fiction-like.

Frankly, I had no idea that anyone actually contemplated the subject that Scalzi writes about here -- a top ten list of bad designs of 'droids and other things in the Star Wars universe:

Boy it's geeky. Damn, it's funny. Scalzi has a fine-tuned gift for lightheartedness. There's always a chance that he wrote the list seriously, knowing full well that the result would be amusing. A degree from the University of Chicago can do that to you. [I can say that because my dad also went there and he too was a world class geek.]

Also, since I'm linking to Scalzi's stuff, here's one I recommend for budding SCI FI writers on the subject of WORLDBUILDING, one that anyone will find interesting, once you learn what building worlds is all about:

Okay. I have to stop. My brain hurts. Clearly, I'm not smart enough to write about these things.


Chris said...

Wow, I had forgotten Scalzi. That seems like a different age and time altogether. I'll go check out those links now. I was having fun reading your stuff instead. It was related.

PS: "Uncle" Joe was always kind of creepy.

Ann said...

Go Scalzi! Ya, he is a geek - but a cool geek.