If You Were a Dinosaur, My Love

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"If You Were a Dinosaur, My Love"
Short story by Rachel Swirsky
CountryUnited States
Genre(s)Speculative fiction
Published inApex Magazine
Published in English2013

"If You Were a Dinosaur, My Love" is a short story by American writer Rachel Swirsky. It was first published in Apex Magazine in 2013.


As a paleontologist lies in a coma, his fiancée tells him how things would be different if he were a Tyrannosaurus rex.


"If You Were a Dinosaur, My Love" won the 2013 Nebula Award for Best Short Story,[1] and was nominated for the 2014 Hugo Award for Best Short Story.[2] At Kirkus Reviews, critic Ana Grilo describes it as "beautiful", "powerful", and "intense", and "almost like a piece of poetry", but questions whether it can truly be considered speculative fiction.[3]

The story was at the center of the Sad Puppies controversy; it was held up as an example of "message fiction" by its detractors, symptomatic of an alleged clique of "social justice warriors" who they claimed were controlling the awards.[4] It was strongly criticized by authors such as John C. Wright[5] and Sarah Hoyt.[6]


  1. ^ "2013 Nebula Awards Winners". Locus Online. 2014-05-20. Retrieved 2016-07-13.
  2. ^ "2014 Hugo Awards". The Hugo Awards. 2014-04-18. Retrieved 2016-07-13.
  3. ^ Grilo, Ana (2015-11-01). "Reading the 2014 Hugo Award Finalists--The Short Stories Ballot". Kirkus Reviews. Retrieved 2016-07-13.
  4. ^ Young, Cathy (2015-09-01). "Culture Warriors Invade Sci-Fi/Fantasy". Reason.com. Retrieved 2016-07-13.
  5. ^ Wright, John C. (2015-01-31). "Dinosaur-sized bigotry". John C. Wright's Journal. Retrieved 2016-07-13.
  6. ^ Hoyt, Sarah (2015-01-31). "If You Were A Grown Up, My Love". According To Hoyt. Retrieved 2016-07-13.

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