Lately you may have begun to see a lot of suggestions that SFF book bloggers be considered for Hugo Awards in the categories Best Fanzine and Best Fan Writer. It’s an interesting discussion, and I personally would love to see some of my favorite book bloggers recognized for their hard work in writing about authors and books. At this point, most of my reading recommendations come from the various book bloggers I follow. I don’t know what I ever did without them!
An excellent post on this topic written by Stefan Raets from Far Beyond Reality went up today at Staffer’s Book Review. It discusses both the voting process and why voters should consider recognizing some of their favorite book bloggers in the categories that apply.
As I’ve seen this topic come up, there has been one thing that has sort of bothered me about it. I’ve seen a few lists of book bloggers worthy of nomination, and they are all very heavily dominated by men. In fact, I don’t think I’ve seen even one blog run by a woman mentioned. It’s not like I’ve seen a huge number of people post lists of their recommended blogs for Hugo nominations, and all the blogs I’ve seen mentioned are wonderful blogs that are worthy of recognition. However, I find it a worrying trend that just like female authors, female book bloggers are also being overlooked.
I’m wondering if it may partially be because female book bloggers seem to be more eclectic than a lot of male book bloggers. Most of the blogs run by men I read almost exclusively read and review science fiction and fantasy while most of the blogs by women I read review some fantasy and/or science fiction but tend to read and review books in other genres as well. Even if they don’t necessarily review SFF 100% of the time, there are a lot of great blogs run women raising awareness about great science fiction and fantasy authors. I’d love to see some book blogs run by women who read and write great reviews covering a lot of SFF books nominated, such as The Book Smugglers, Calico Reaction, Bookworm Blues, or The Little Red Reviewer.
If you are voting for the Hugos, consider nominating some of your favorite book bloggers. And while I’d certainly urge you to vote your conscience regardless of gender, please do give some thought and consideration to some of the fantastic women contributing to the SFF community!