RaceFail09 continues to rumble on in the blogosphere, and if you are one of the people who haven’t been following it then Peggy at Biology in Science Fiction has a lengthy round-up of links. However, that’s not why I’m pointing you at her post. Peggy produces some of the best fan writing about science fiction around at the moment (and was on my Hugo ballot), and I’d love to get to meet her one day. But despite being white and a book reader she says she doesn’t feel comfortable about going to cons. She has the impression that con-attending fans are not only racist, but misogynist and elitist as well. And the killer point for me was:
Of course it’s only convention-goers (or people willing to pay the convention fee) who are allowed to vote on the Hugo Awards, so in that sense it’s people who attend cons who help define which novels are the “important” ones in the genre.
As with the whole of this debate, it really doesn’t matter whether people’s perceptions are correct or not, what matters is that they have those perceptions.
I have another post about the future of Worldcon coming – hopefully later this week. I’ll keep trying, but sometimes it seems very much like a losing battle.