I’m in Montreal where I will hand over the Campbell Tiara to the newest winner of the Campbell Award for Best New Writer. I’m seriously looking forward to it. This year had a really strong field with David Anthony Durham, Aliette de Bodard, Tony Pi, Felix Gilman, and Gord Sellar.
Any of them would look good in the tiara.
When Jay Lake and Elizabeth Bear came up with the idea for the tiara, it was to raise public awareness of the award. This only works if people recognize the tiara and what it means.
Which means wearing it.
Not that this is particularly onerous, since it’s pretty. I joke about how I wore it to all “State Occasions” but the truth is, I’ve worn it at every con I’ve been to this year. I’ll have it on at WorldCon. I’m a little bit uncomfortable with that, because the spotlight should be on the nominees and this feels like I’m begging people to pay attention to me. But here’s the thing… you know the Hugo Rocket pin? You see that and if you’re at WorldCon, you immediately what it means because it’s entered the public consciousness. The same should be true of the Campbell Tiara. Which means wearing it.
So that when I pass it to the new winner, even if you don’t attend the Hugo Ceremony, you’ll know that the person in the tiara is this year’s recipient of the Campbell Award for Best New Writer. That’s the whole point of having it. Plus it’s pretty.