I guess I'm a liar. Not on purpose though! Life has been coming at me like an avalanche. So let me run it down.
This happened last February.
And this was today, June 8th, 2023. Publishers getting super excited about my book!
Working on a solar punk noir novelette with Dartmouth College scientist Helene Serrousi that will be published in Lightspeed Magazine.
And I'm just scratching the surface. So. Much. News. Anyway, back to life! Back to reality!
It's been more than a minute since I added something new here. The problem is so much has happened in such a short time, I haven't been able to keep up. I think I can promise to do some quick catch-up posts in the next couple days, but to run it down: New baby, new house, three new stories, novel is almost a real thing and I'm looking at the copy edits now, Kaleidocast.
I had the honor of moderating a panel on conlanguages and linguistics at ARISIA '23 with Anne E.G. Nydam, James L. Cambias, Nomi S. Burstein, and guest of honor, Andrea Hairston! Readercon almost did something similar but then along came the Pandemic. Thank you to the ARISIA programmers and volunteers for making this happen, my first in person convention post-pandemic.
Linked here are the notes from the panel. I believe I've set it up so you may comment.
Here's a quick hit. If you are interested in using my solarpunk Powerpoint to teach, please do. But also do these things:
1) Keep it free. Do not charge anyone for any content. Kind of goes against the point and it's rude.
2) @ me on Twitter (though who knows how long I'll be staying on that burning ship) or or Instagram with a #solarpunk #education to show what you used it for.
3) Absolutely do edit as you see fit and pass on any changed slides. Let this text grow and live.
4) Thank @Ahzimandias for letting me engage with his students.
I'll post the other resources I used here later. If you're interested in my other writings about solarpunk they are here:
10/1/2022 0 Comments
I moderating a panel on Fighting Fascism with Climate Fiction at ClifiCon22. Here is a link to the video of the entire virtual convention.
We'll be posting links and resources as we go. Here is the link to see what we post. Even if you didn't register for the event and participate live, I will try to post items of interest on twitter @cprwords. I'm sure there will be a lot to say that everyone needs to hear.
PS: I'll also be a panelist on an earlier panel "Blurring the Lines between Nonfiction and Climate Fiction" at 1:35. Hope to see you there!
Dave Chappelle's last special on Netflix. I'm going to keep this short because a lot of ink has already been spilt on this, and we are in 2022. Time for a fresh start. Still the conversation continues. But here's my take.
Dave Chappelle works on the absolute highest tight rope. No comedian has ever had the reach that he has. If he is sloppy with his punchlines, or inconsistent, or just wrong, the penalty is high. Even a goat can brick. Ask Michael Jordan. But again, that penalty does not get him "cancelled." No one is taking away anything from Dave. Again, Dave is not cancelled. As he wil remind you, he's still kinda rich, B$@!
His shows are on Netflix. He will have more shows and he will still sell out stadiums. But he fouled. He fouled and got a reaction. That is natural and those who called him on it need to be given space to do so, just the same as he gets a chance to say what he wants, within reason. The people who see the inaccuracies, morally questionable arguements, and logical loopty-loops, or are hurt by them also get to weigh in.
Let me go further. In 8:46, possibly Dave's most iconic (and accurate) special, Dave makes a mistake. He claimed that the same day Chris Donner was killing 9 police officers in a shoot out, Kobe was playing his last game. Dave says, if it wasn't for Kobe, the country would have gone up in the flames of reactionary violence right then. Kobe saved the country by doing what he did best on one of his best days. Except that is wrong.
Kobe's last game was in 2016. Donner's shoot out was in 2013. Dave made a powerful point with this story, but on the facts he was way off. Worse, Dave didn't need to connect Kobe to Chris to make his point. It would have been so much better if he hadn't. But Dave was telling a story and wanted to use these two stories to make a powerful point. Dave is one hell of a storyteller. There are few comedians who are better.
Why do I bring this up? If Dave can be demonstrably wrong or sloppy on the facts with something that he knows well enough to write mulitple books about, i.e. racism against Black Americans, then we have to accept that at the very least he needs a fact checker. We have to accept that he can also be very wrong about something which he admittedly knows very little about: gender issues. He has said on more than one occasion that he's still figuring this stuff out. So do we take the word of an expert or one who is still completing the assignment (news flash: You can't call yourself TERF and say you are pro-trans rights. Just...no). Or we listen to the people who are acutally living the life, and center their experience in the conversation: Specifically black trans people, but also trans of every variety.
There's a lot more to say here, but look: I like Dave. I think for most of my life, he has been on the whole, amazing. But amazing is clearly not perfect. With great power does come great responsibility. If he has one, we should expect that he exercise the other.
This post came as a response to a FB meme asking if Dave is a villain, hero, or anti-hero. In my opinion, it is an EXTREMELY counter productive, and quite frankly, BS click-baity question. Very not cool. It is obvious. Dave is a hero to Black people, but something else to the LGBTQ, which includes Black people. Heroes are not gods. Heroes are not unfallible. Heroes are not in any way perfect. If they f-up, they should be called on it and be heroic enough to learn from the mistakes and do so publically. to show people how it's done right.
12/10/2020 0 Comments
It's been a busy year. So busy, I forgot to post about my first non-speculative publication, and it happened to be in Foreign Policy Magazine.
In it, I make an historical case for the necessity and legitimacy of non-pacifist tactics for Black Americans to defend their interests. Organized defensive violence is necessary to counter the organized systemic violence of the state (which is rooted in white supremacy) and parallel centers of white supremacy that still hold power in the United States. It is never the first option, and the diverse Black Americans communites, as a whole, are as peaceful as any other. But we are the ones most directly threated. The dangers are real. The responses to them must be robust and mutli-faceted.
That's all for now. In other news, the fam and I are moving into an actual house, and I've got a new side hustle writing videogames! Life in my bubble is copacedic.
I was not looking for this, but found it anyway. Twitter is mysterous bird. Either way, It's a great read. It goes some way to restoring faith in about 99% of humanity. Well at least in those intial moments of crisis, before we get into each others politics.
The last ten months have been really productive despite the seeming acceleration of entropy world wide. I published three essays while simultaneously working on final edits for my novel. Then just today, my agent, Barry Goldblatt, told me we were ready to go on submission in August. I announced my intentions to the world and my friend Shan gave me the biggest virtual hug you ever saw. We've known each other for years. She's old school BSFW. I even got to produce one of her stories on the Keleidocast's first season, way back when.It was "Bilaadi," one of my favorite short stories of all time. Now she's bringing straight fire to the readers of epic fantasy with her Daevabad Trilogy, the final installment of which is coming out Tuesday, The Empire of Gold. (I already got my copy. Read it. Loved it. Will review it).
Needless to say, I'm super proud of her and grateful for her support. Also, happy that I can put down my novel and write something completely different for awhile. I've got a weird western alternate history with a Black conjure woman/ gunslinger burning a hole in my pocket. Well, it won't be completely different. There will be a dragon.
6/11/2020 0 Comments
A friend and ally, Louis Evans, read my Tor.com essays "In search of Afro-Solarpunk Part 1 & Part 2" and passed it on to Lydia Laureson, founder of the New Modality, a new publication that delves into experimental and speculative everything with gusto and expertise. Lydia loved it and reached out to me to do a photo essay on Afrofuturism. The concept was grand in scale: an inter-dimensional griot on a meta-fiction journey of our many Black futures through art. Unfortunately that was not to be. The story I wanted to tell and the pictures I wanted to use would have demanded a budget to rival that of a Marvel MCU tent poler. So we returned to the purity of the written word. That gave me an excuse to move this topic to the top of my to-do list.
For a while now, I've taken to seeing religion, at its core, as a kind of performative art. An expression of belief interpreted for endless audiences. It is lived in, sacrificed to, ingested, regurgitated, and coded in ways that escape casual description, easy moral pigeonholing, and demand critique. In other words, religion is pure human. It is an art that is as fundamental as gravity to so many communities. I thought solarpunk would be more beautiful and functional for integrating these perspectives into its many variable visions of the future. This essay was a direct appeal to creatives: consider the spiritual aspects of being in the near future.
I hope you enjoy it.
The essay can be found here: Promised Land: Religious Ideology and Solarpunk Science Fiction. Please, consider subscribing to the New Modality. There is SO much more where this came from.
Not my real name, but it does roll right off the tongue, doesn't it?