Three years ago, my podcast won a Parsec Award for the technology category. The following year that category along with several others was eliminated. They were part of a short lived experiment in broadening the focus of the Parsecs to podcasts other than those sharing, promoting or discussing speculative fiction. I can respect the restoration of the awards’ original remit. I assumed that while I could support my favorite eligible podcasts and podcasters that would be it for my own direct participation. Not that I can complain, being able to boast that I won the only Parsec for technology podcasts there ever was or will be.
Imagine my surprise when I discovered a couple of months back that someone nominated my podcast for this year’s Parsecs. The category to which my show was submitted is Best Fact Behind the Fiction Podcast. I can see that, given my book reviews, interviews of select authors (well, mostly Cory Doctorow), and essays on tropes and elements of science fiction that overlap strongly with my interests in technology. When submissions closed, I was one of fifteen nominees.
I diligently assembled my ten minute audio submission and fired it off well ahead of the deadline. Given the eligibility time frame for episodes allowable for inclusion, I selected my Hacker as a Hero essay, my interview with Cory at Philcon, and my copyright panel at Dragon*Con last year. My submission for the 2007 Parsecs included my very first interview with Cory so it felt right to include one of my subsequent interviews this time out.
So far, that common thread has proven lucky. The finalists for this year’s Parsecs were released last night and I found out I was one of the five to make it for my category. My show is in excellent company and I can honestly say I would be very happy to see any of the other four finalists take home the Parsec.
Getting past the initial surprise of being nominated and the pleasant realization my submission will go on to be judged on the merits of its content, its quality and how well it fits the category, I am starting to see this as a touchstone for the show. I think I was well on my way to finding my voice three years ago but my writing and production were still rough compared to how they’ve grown since. Regardless of whether I win or get to cheer for one of my fellow finalists, I am very proud of my work. I am especially proud of how it has matured in just these past few years, let alone the full five plus years I’ve been casting my voice out into the wild vastness of the internet.
My thanks to the fine folks who organize and run the Parsecs and the best of luck to my cohorts in my category and all of the fine, inspiringly creative authors and podcasters in all of the other categories as well. See you all at Dragon*Con in just a few short weeks!