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"it would be so much better if he didn't write like a science fiction writer aiming at science fiction readers"

What's wrong with not limiting your audience by not confining to genre expectations?

Stephen Shevlin

Absolutely nothing. But there is also nothing wrong with writing to a particular audience either. Neither choice has anything to do with whether a work is good, or worthy of award nominations. And given that the Clarke is for science fiction, demanding that works on the shortlist forgo science-fictional techniques on account of they're limiting the readership to science fiction readers is kind of boneheaded. And it implies that the only truly good science fiction is stuff that appeals to more than just us science fiction readers. Yeah, a lot of great work appeals to more than just us SF readers. But a lot doesn't. And the Clarke isn't an award for "The year's best SF book that will also appeal to non-genre readers."

I would have no beef with Priest's explaining why he found Mieville's neologisms ineffective or badly done. I'd disagree--I enjoyed Embassytown's use of neologisms quite a bit, myself--but it would be something to think about and interesting to read. I've got a problem with "use of neologisms is lazy writing, the end."

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