Things I Wasn’t Expecting to Get in the Mail, Example Number One


It’s a commendation from the Ohio General Assembly for being nominated for the Hugo and for winning the Campbell. I honestly have no idea where this came from (aside from, you know, the Ohio General Assembly). I certainly didn’t alert the government. I got a large envelope from State Senator Tom Roberts, and my first thought was that it was just another bit of election detritus, so I’m glad I didn’t just trash it.

Anyway, it’s lovely to be saluted as one of “Ohio’s finest citizens,” especially first thing on a Saturday morning. Hopefully the rest of the weekend will be equally surprisingly pleasant.

39 Comments on “Things I Wasn’t Expecting to Get in the Mail, Example Number One”

  1. John,

    this means that you are now prominent enough to be on the radar…..which could be a good thing or a bad thing.

    As long as the next official mailing isnt from the IRS…….

    Sorry, 23 years in the service has made me a bit paranoid I guess!!!!!

  2. Whoa. That’s cool, bizarre, and cool. And kind of funny. But mostly cool. Where do you put things like that? Do you hang them up in your office, or put them in a drawer?

  3. It’s so you won’t mind so much when they pass a new tax affecting only Campbell-winning authors who blog…

    Mike, who has little faith in politicians of any stripe…

  4. That is awesome. Nice to get noticed by the state for a good thing.

    I agree with him, John: most people I know who get noticed by the State for something end up on probation.

  5. Congratulations you fine citizen you! You’re a credit to Ohio, I’m sure. The only problem is, now you’re on the radar. Ohio is watching you. The public eye can be such a burden.

  6. Congratulations from the NE corner of the state.

    My son picked up OMW from his school library yesterday. He said he recognized your name, rather than being interested in the blurb. You’ve made the big time, John.

  7. Congrats John,

    some pols are better about this kind of thing than others – are you in his state seate district? Especially here in Philadelphia (Killer Heroin capital of the US! (Killer as in deadly not complimentary surf-speak)) the state and local pols who get continuously reelected despite utter incompetence arer those who show up at ever wedding, ethnic feast and youth sports banquet. Perhaps the good senator sees the Hugo as a glorified Eagle Scout Award?

  8. I honestly have no idea where this came from (aside from, you know, the Ohio General Assembly). I certainly didn’t alert the government.

    Your state senator (Tom Roberts, D-5th district) has minions in field offices who read local papers and clip news items such as the lovely profile your local paper did of you. Having been advised of your outstanding achievement, the good senator probably would have introduced a resolution full of whereas-es and such, and his colleagues in the state senate would have voted “yes” and … voila. You are commended.

    Way better than a form letter signed by a minion!

  9. Very very nifty.

    Has it happened to other non-Ohioan writers? Do other states commend their writers? Or should we all just pack up and head for Dayton and establish writing communes.

    I hope he (and the other Senators) read the book and enjoy it. Or that maybe other Senators see it (or one of your others) and think: Scalzi….oh, that guy….and then pick up one of your books.

  10. Cassie:

    OMW is in a school library? Interesting.


    Yes, he’s my state senator. It’s entirely possible he read about it in the newspaper.

  11. Carefull Scalzi, this is how it begins. First, flattery in the mail, then you starting getting Instant Messages from somebody like Mark Foley…

    I’m just saying..

  12. John:


    I’d keep it in the car as a free pass in case some hot-handed state trooper nails you doing 82 on I-75. “Why, yes, I have proof of insurance, sir. Just let me reach across my commendation by the (dramatic, one-beat pause) Ohio General Assembly!”

    Or in your office. Either way would be cool.


  13. OK, that’s it, dude.

    You’ve now outranked Warren G. Harding on my ‘favorite guys from Ohio’ list.


    Only Ted Turner and George Armstron Custer rank higher.

  14. Hang on a minute. How was this delivered on Saturday morning? It must be some sort of Trojan horse thingy. Check to see if there are any very small warriors hiding under the seal.

  15. I can attest that OMW is in more than one school library. I gifted our library with my copy. School library budgets being what they are, there is little money for science fiction. Often when I have finished reading books (in several different genres), I give the book to the school library.


  16. John, I contacted Karl Rove and had him order up the commendation. We’ll make a good Republican Party member out of you yet!!

  17. Jerry:

    Heh. Well, Tom Roberts is a Democrat, so I’m not entirely sure I see the Rovian connection there. But I appreciate the thought.

  18. John,

    You should try putting it in the window of your car the next time you have to double-park or don’t want to feed a meter, in case a cop wants to give you a ticket.

    Hey, you never know.

    Actually, you could probably use it, through the OH congressional delegation, as a credential to get a fat contract to rebuild Iraq.

  19. Jon H.

    So you propose that:

    A. Scalzi makes a gazillion because all of his books are translated into Iraqi and made required reading in all Iraqi schools.

    B. Scalzi’s name briefly replaces “Haliburton” as the symbol of all that is wrong with American policy.

    C. Iraqi children see the OMW series as a metaphor for their situation (a foreign government who won’t talk to anyone, including their own people, sends soldiers to wipe out an enemy of their choice/invention) and they create an inscrutable cult of Jane Sagan which for some reason unites all Iraqis in peace, love and understanding

    D. All of this was sparked by an intern reading a clipping and passing it on to a State Senator’s office.

    Works for me.

  20. Congrats! You should suggest to Tor that they use it in promoring your books next to the positive reviews quotes.

  21. Congrats!

    If it were me, it would have been trashed without opening it; so I would have never known.

    I’m anti-social that way. I’d have assumed it was junk mail.

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