There are naturally a lot of posts about the Hugos going around at the moment, and the phrase 'Hugo worthy' has come up a lot, starting me thinking about perhaps nominating next year. And what to nominate.
Other than favourite authors on auto-buy lists, it's unusual for me to read books in their year of publication, let alone the books that people seem to think are 'best' or 'worthy'. And when I do get around to reading one of the hot nominees or winners, it rarely seems to be the sort of story I like, let alone thought excellent.
Which is, oh well, people like different things. 'Best' is a construct built of buzz, and word of mouth, an active fan base or, apparently, sealing wax, string and puppy dog tails.
So I circle back to that term 'worthy', and what exactly 'best' means, and realise that, substantively, they're terms that push me to not nominate the kind of books that work best for me.
So when the nomination deadline approaches I shall compile a little list of books I've read that were published in the relative year, throw away any criteria other than a yes/no decision on whether the book 'worked' for me, and nominate them.
'Worthy' really is that simple.