drcpunk (drcpunk) wrote,

Going to WorldCon? Like the Graphic Novel Award?

If you are attending WorldCon, you are a member of WSFS, the World Science Fiction Society, and you may attend the WSFS Business Meeting. If you attend it, you may vote on any and all questions that come up for votes.

This year, one question that will come up is: Shall we continue to have a Hugo Award for Best Graphic Novel or shall we discontinue that category after this WorldCon?

I am not sure whether this will be raised at the first meeting or the second. I am certain that I want this award to stick around.

Not everybody does. Packing the meeting is a hallowed and honorable tradition. It is annoying when used by people who disagree with me, but it is not unfair. If you care enough about the issue to spend some of your WorldCon going to the business meeting, you have earned the right to vote.

If you are attending WorldCon this year, and if you want the graphic novel award to stick around, you have the power to do something about this. If you are attending WorldCon, and you do not want the graphic novel award to stick around, well, I think you are wrong, but you have the power to do something about this. I have no idea how close the voting is likely to be. There are people who are passionate about wanting the Hugos to stay the way they were and who do not want additional categories, including this one. There are people, including me, obviously, who are passionate about wanting this award to become permanent.

I showed up at my first WSFS Business Meeting three years ago, because I was passionate about one particular issue, the continuation of the Semiprozine award. (Short version: I wanted it to continue. A lot of other people who agreed showed up to their first WSFS Business Meeting, and the category will continue to be a part of the Hugo Awards. Longer version available on request or with a bit of internet searching.)

If you're feeling passionate about the Graphic Novel award, and aren't sure what to do during the rest of the meeting, here's what I did: Mostly, I listened. I don't know Robert's Rules of Order very well, but I picked up on a couple of procedural points. Once or twice I asked a question when a) protocol clearly permitted and b) I had a coherent question to ask, probably "Could you clarify X?" or "I think by X you mean Y -- is my understanding correct?" Once or twice I may have said something during debate. I know that I did so last year. But, debate time is limited, so anything said should be a) relevant and important, and b) probably not something someone else has already said.

And, I stood up to be counted. I mean this literally: for votes where a show of hands does not immediately make it clear which side has won, each side stands and each standing person counts off, serpentine, in turn.

I can't promise you won't be bored or frustrated if you go. I was sometimes frustrated, but rarely, if ever, bored. One of the meetings last year was interesting enough to me that I could argue the case for nominating it for Best Dramatic Presentation, Long Form.
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