ATP RANKINGS--TOP 10
Per this, I thought it might be good to post the current Author Tour Pro Rankings, which were just released this past week. These are just for "genre" writers.
(1) Neal Stephenson
(2) Neil Gaiman
(3) Kelly Link
(4) China Mieville
(5) Susanna Clarke
(6) Gene Wolfe
(7) J.K Rowling
(8) John Crowley
(9) John Twelve Hawks
(10) Jasper Fforde
- Stephenson held onto the top spot with his vicious serve and his ferocious delaying tactics, producing hundreds and hundreds of pages before anything happens and thus wearing out his opponents.
- Gaiman would have been higher, but in a key tactical error his leather jacket was out for touching up this week. Like a hermit crab deprived of his shell, he was thus vulnerable to Jasper Fforde's delicate but quick serve. (As a result, Fforde moved up, temporarily, from 105th to 10th.)
- Link would have been ranked higher this week but was oblivious to the tour schedule because she was "off somewhere writing" and did not show up for her face-off versus a nonplussed Cory Doctorow. (However, Doctorow also defaulted from a match because he was too busy emailing somebody, and he moved down to 11th.)
- Mieville made a strategic blunder by changing from a novel to short story racket during a clay court tournament and did not receive the usual attention, thus lowering his ranking before he even played his opponent, Terry Brooks.
- Clarke endured a vicious pummeling at the hands of ace specialist Elizabeth Kostova, but then trounced a flummoxed Dan Simmons (who was not on the court at the time, out walking his dog at the time of the encounter) to retain her top 10 ranking. (Kostova has not been playing long enough to be ranked.)
- Wolfe played in a difficult round-robin tournament against a slew of trilogy-writing heroic fantasy novelists due to the recent publication of the Knight-Wizard and survived most of them, despite hitting mostly ironic ground strokes, to maintain his current ranking.
- Rowling tumbled from the top 5 after losing a brutal three-set match against the ghost of Roald Dahl, who was hampered by being dead.
- Crowley appeared at his match dressed as Lord Byron and although he won against both Thomas Ligotti (who refused to use a racquet) and Poppy Z. Brite (who used a buzzsaw), he was disqualified due to "costume irregularities."
- Hawks won his match against a thoroughly discombobulated Octavia Butler by revealing during a crucial set point that he is actually Simon Le Bon from Duran Duran. This massive upset resulted in his first ranking within the top 500.
- Jeff Ford blew off his event, saying "This is bullshit" and fell out of the top 10 entirely for the first time in three years. "Who gives a crap?" he said when reached for comment.
- Charles Stross attempted to play in thirty tournaments over a four-day stretch, collapsed from exhaustion, and fell out of the top 10 for the first time since the 2004 WorldCon, at which he similarly collapsed from exhaustion.
- M. John Harrison asked to be left off the rankings, but promised to "drop by the next tournament with a two-by-four."