don’t call it a weeknotes

I had a couple of paragraphs to go here, but deleted them once I realised that this would actually be just as effective:

I mean, it hasn’t been bad—just pretty intense? And I have not taken to Haddock-scale alcohol consumption, to be clear. (Though I did have a few jars of Eriksberg with my cat-sitter last night! Living the dream, me.)

Lots of work, is the point. And next week I’m up and down to Umeå, as already mentioned. So service may be a bit irregular here… but then it always is. No refunds!

Just a couple of mentions to finish off the week, then. First of all, if you pine for the days when this blog was much more focussed on infrastructure than it has been for a while, then you may want to go listen to this Canadian radio interview with my good friend Deb Chachra, whose bluntly-titled book How Infrastructure Works is apparently going gangbusters.

Deb is a proper engineer, but she’s also spent an unusual amount of time running with those of us from the soc-sci side of the fence, which means that her take on what infrastructure means is not at all like the standard unexamined-tech-sublime engineer’s take. This interview will give you a sense of whether you might want to get yourself a copy.

(The fact that I get mentioned in the first few minutes, albeit very much in passing, has definitely not prejudiced me at all, no sir.)

In other news, it seems the BSFA is putting up reviews from the BSFA Review on the association’s website. My review of Tomorrow’s Parties, the Jonathan Strahan-edited 2022 edition of MIT’s annual short science fiction anthology, went up there some weeks back; I only found this out1 because Jake Casella Brookins at the Ancillary Review mentioned it in a round-up post. (Thanks, Jake!)

Given I got two rather rude emails not long after the initial publication of this piece, I’m not sure what will come of it’s having been made more widely available… I am quite pleased with the argument it makes, though the emails indicate that said argument can be taken as a slight on one author in particular. For my part, I don’t consider it a slight on the author at all—though it is definitely a slight on the story in question, which is simply not very good2, for reasons that I took great care to detail.

  1. I have no idea how anyone else is finding these, either, since the Wild Apricot CMS seems to have no RSS function that I can discover. I presume they’re being squirted out on legacy socnets somewhere? ↩︎
  2. Writers sometimes publish stuff that isn’t very good; hell knows I’ve done it plenty of times, and surely will again. I am actually more familiar with the author’s academic work, for which I have considerable respect. The fiction, I’ve mostly not encountered; it may well be much better than the piece under discussion! It would surely struggle to be worse. ↩︎



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