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It’s clear the standards for science fiction and fantasy have changed with the entry of professional writers into the game. I suspect this is what the Sad/Rabid Puppies are complaining about in their tug-of-war about the awards. I don’t think there’s any way to get to pro writers out of science fiction—they’re intent on making a living as writers and on continuing to do something they love. They write good stories, and excellent books—so much so that they’ve clearly crowded the less literary technical writing crowd out of both the Nebula and the Hugo Awards. They’re probably also crowding this group out of publishing contracts. I don’t think there’s any way the Puppies can change this.

However, these pro writers are trained in the Humanities, and not in the sciences. That means, as Trevor Quachri suggests in his debut interview, that they’re not likely to write hard SF or to submit a whole lot to magazines like Analog. The new pro online magazines like Clarkesworld or Tor.com have picked them up, instead. What does this mean for hard SF as a genre? Should the community be working to preserve it in some way? What could be done, at this point, to advance hard SF as a sub-genre?

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