Public Service Announcement (Followed By Shamelessly Self-Serving Challenge) for February 2015

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PUBLIC SERVICE ANNOUNCEMENT:

Attention all Lifetime, Active, and Associate Members of SFWA: This is to remind you that the deadline for submitting your nomination ballot for the 2014 Nebula Awards is coming up fast: February 15, 2015, 11:59 pm PST.

2014 saw a lot of fine fiction published. As a member in good standing of SFWA, you get to submit up to five nominations in each category (short story, novelette, novella, novel, as well as the Norton and Bradbury awards), and the top six results then land on the final ballot, which will be available by February 20th.

Note: if you’ve put it off, haven’t read much of anything yet, and don’t know where to start, this might be a good time to check out the Nebula Suggested Reading List and see what your peers are considering as their top picks. Though of course, your mileage may vary.

SHAMELESSLY SELF-SERVING CHALLENGE (AKA “THE TUXEDO GAMBIT”):

As you may know (if you’ve crossed my social media path), roughly six months ago I stumbled into “the zone” and I’ve been there ever since, eating better, exercising more, making better choices towards a healthier life. In practical terms, this has meant a loss of some thirty-five pounds, which is to say, about 12% of me. By the time of the Nebula Awards Weekend in June, I expect to have dwindled further, at least fifty pounds worth, or actually a bit more if you were to be comparing me to my size at last year’s event in San Jose.

And mentioning last year’s Nebula Awards is a deliberate segue. You may have seen pictures from the banquet. In particular, photos of a stunning, purple-haired woman in a gorgeous vintage gown and the large, tuxedoed man standing next to her. That’s my wife, Valerie, and me.

I’ve only worn a tux twice in the past forty years or more, and both times were for the last two Nebula Awards banquet nights. My feeling is, if SFWA members are going to do me the honor of putting my name on a ballot, the least I can do is to dress up for it. Particularly given that the protagonist in my nominated novellas usually wears a tuxedo.

Now, here’s the challenge: if you want to see me (or see photos of me) in a tuxedo, before and after at least a fifty pound weight loss, then your course is clear: you need to do your part to put me on the ballot one more time!

Hey, I told you in the header that this was shameless, stop rolling your eyes at me!

So that’s the deal. If I make the ballot for an unprecedented third year in a row with another novella from the same series, I’ll show up in Chicago in a tuxedo, and subsequently post before and after photos to my various social media realms. If not, alas, the world will never get to see the contrast in all its sartorial splendor.

It’s in your hands.

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