If you want to participate in the nominations stage of this year’s Hugo Awards, and you were not a member of the 2009 Worldcon in Montréal, then you must purchase at least a Supporting Membership in this year’s Worldcon by January 31st.
Note that this is not the deadline for submitting nominations, it is just the deadline for securing eligibility to vote. That’s set much earlier to allow time for your membership to be processed, and for ballot papers to be mailed to anyone who does not wish to vote online.
This year’s Worldcon, Aussiecon 4, takes place in Melbourne, Australia in September. It is not necessary to buy an Attending Membership, or travel to Australia, in order to vote in the Hugo Awards. All you need is a Supporting Membership. Prices for these are: AU$70, US$50, CA$50, £25, €35 or ¥4,900. Further details, including online payment, can be found here.
In 1979 Worldcon was held in Brighton, England, and the BBC sent along a film crew. They were making a series of programs, Time out of Mind, about science fiction writers, and Worldcon was a good place to get footage. The final program in the series ended up dedicated entirely to the convention, and culminated in a brief segment from the Hugo Award ceremony where we see Vonda N. McIntyre receive her trophy for Dreamsnake.
As the series dates back to 1979, little has been seen of it for a long time. However, one enterprising British fan, Arnold Akien, did record it on a very early VHS machine, and that video has found its way to us. Here, then, is a brief moment from the history of the Hugo Awards.
Amongst the other luminaries present at the convention were Christopher Reeve, who accepted the Hugo Award for Superman. A young British fan called Dave Langford received his first two Hugo Award nominations that year, but he did not win in either category. A full list of the 1979 winners can be found on this site.
The Anticipation folks have made a DVD of the 2009 Hugo Award Ceremony available for sale. It costs $9.95 + postage, and you can buy it from CreateSpace. A DVD of the convention’s masquerade is also available.
As per our tweet earlier today, Aussiecon 4 has opened nominations for the 2010 Hugo Awards. And being in Australia, which started 2010 long before most of us, they were very quick off the mark indeed. You can find the ballot at their web site.
As usual, the nominating stage of the process is open to anyone who was a member of last year’s Worldcon, Anticipation in Montréal, and to anyone who buys at least a supporting membership in Aussiecon 4. In order to give the Aussiecon 4 folks time to process memberships before the ballot closes you must buy your membership by January 31st. Supporting membership prices are as follows: US $50; AU $70; € 35; £25; ¥4,900. You can buy them online here.
Fans around the world are already discussing which works and people to nominate. You may wish to check the third party recommendation sites listed in our right-hand sidebar. If you are unsure about the eligibility of online works because of the changes to the WSFS Constitution that were made in Montréal you may find this public statement by Aussiecon 4’s Hugo Award Administrator helpful. And please remember that Best Graphic Story is now an official category so you can keep nominating such works.
The deadline for submitting nominating ballots is 23:59 PST on Saturday, March 13, 2010.