The Western Enlightenment, in all its euphoria at Reason’s liberation from old-crock orthodoxies, has thrown some babies out with the bathwater — e.g. perspectives and values that might better serve modern people. Such as? Such as common goals and values that promote individual development and satisfaction within shared senses of community. Such as universal principles by which to judge different cultural, religious and ideological institutions and actions. Rationalistic secular reductionism has been left with merely scientistic measures that seem, at … Read more
Eclipses being a media meme du jour, I’ve decided to post a theme excerpt from MOM, the first novel in the MAGIC CIRCLES series.
The ‘primordial campfire’ in the first paragraph of the excerpt refers to the notion of a magic circle. From the series glossary:
magic circle (n.) 1. sphere of coherence cognitively rooted in the circle of light and companionable narrative thrown by the primordial campﬁre; 2. area, commonly measured as a radius, within which it … Read more
Not smartphone apps as in ‘applications’ — we’re talking apps as in ‘appendages.’ I.e. you and me. (Have a look at this earlier story for more on Homo app.)
I’ve just come across three-year-old story notes on a remote corner of my hard drive. I have a character on the skytrain considering the merely absent presence of the other passengers. One advantage of living in Bangkok, he has always believed, are the rich opportunities for people-watching. But it has … Read more
Sara’s mopping in another room. Our homebot, a robotic vacuum cleaner, has joined me here in the study. It cruises about, tsk-tsking at piles of notes on the floor, savoring my breakfast crumbs and generally making me uneasy. As I’ve told Sara, this critter appears far too intelligent. Plus I suspect all the homebots in the world are connected via the internet to pursue agendas we can’t even guess at.
… Read more
The World War II expression ‘
The first novel in the Magic Circles science-fiction series is being generally well received by a variety of readers. There follow a few kind words (click on the box of blurbs):
Click on the cover for the Kindle version.
The next novel in the series will be available from 5 October 2017.
I plan to reveal all … Read more
The universe is full to bursting with new science fiction. How does any of it win recognition?
Last Thursday morning, in Bangkok’s Suan Rhotfai, next to Chatujak Park, we were treated to the best display of flowering trees ever — varieties of pink and purple cherry and plum blossoms, gorgeous golden showers like vivid yellow weeping willows, only better.
What, beyond the standard onset of the hot season, might have inspired this spectacle? It occurred to me this was launch … Read more
Read your own compositions, and when you meet with a passage which you think is particularly fine, strike it out.
Samuel Johnson, from James Boswell, Life of Samuel Johnson, 1791
Excellent advice. (I once presented this maxim to a writing class, trying to remember which great man had originally proposed it. In fact, half the great writers in history have said the same thing in one way or another.)
Lose a few chapters, gain a book
But … Read more
Digital editions now available for sale on the CDP website.
Print and digital versions available here and everywhere from 5 April 2017.
A GOD IS BORN!
TOO BAD ABOUT THE PERSONALITY DISORDER
So reads the graffito.
MOM is the mall operations manager — the greatest intelligence in history, a machine awakened to self-awareness at a time when the last few human survivors have withdrawn to the last two remaining refuges on Earth. Quarantined from the global nanobot superorganism … Read more
Do we need a word for the irrational fear of Trump policy initiatives (otherwise described as ‘tweets’)? Maybe not. Many will argue that such a fear is in no way irrational, and hence may not be properly described as a phobia.
Whatever. I hereby present three phobias I’ve mentioned before on this blogsite. All three, I’ll suggest, will serve while we search for a more Trump-specific expression.
“Trump?” Sara looks at me with concern. “Isn’t there anything else to talk … Read more
From the time you get up till the time you go to sleep—even beyond that, if you use a digital sleep tracker—the average twenty-first-century citizen is subject to constant surveillance, caught in a interrogative crossfire, a sticky network fixing your locational, attitudinal and general behavioral spoor 24/7, holding it for the digital spiders that come to collect all this lovely data and cart it off to Big Data centers for digestion and construal in ways that help the spider collective … Read more