" In this universe the night was falling; the shadows were lengthening towards an east that would not know another dawn. But elsewhere the stars were still young and the light of morning lingered; and along the path he once had followed, Man would one day go again"

Arthur C. Clarke Against the Fall of Night

Saturday, February 20, 2021

Reading

 


  I have been reading and blogging even less lately. I think it is a combination of laziness, lassitude, and insomnia. Two weeks of polar vortex did not help; this is something we expect in western Canada, but the fact we have been sheltering in place for so long because of the pandemic meant that we were already housebound. However, our family and friends are okay, so I have little reason to complain. 


  I was sitting in my room early this morning, and right at my elbow, I found a potential remedy, a pile of anthologies. I started with Aliette de Bodard's "The Frost on Jade Buds" from Solaris Rising 3 and followed that up with "A Mouse in the Walls of the Global Village" by Dean R.Koontz from Again Dangerous Visions 2. Neither story was a cheerful read. 


  But the more I discuss science fiction with Doug during our weekly get-togethers, now via Skype, the more I realize how short stories have informed my science fiction reading. Both Doug and Helen are more novel orientated. So I thought the best solution to get my butt in gear was to select some anthologies to dip into regularly. I tried to have some reasonably current material and some significant anthologies I had on hand, but I have not read extensively. Also, I wanted to read paper books with no music or tv in the background to reduce my overall screen time to see if that helps with my insomnia and my concentration level. The Dangerous Visions anthologies include introductory material by Harlan Ellison and the author of the stories, which can be quite interesting. The Koontz story has already given me some ideas for future posts and titles to investigate. 


How are you doing/coping?

4 comments:

  1. I am sorry to hear that you, and so many others, find that the pandemic has sucked so much of the joy out of life. I'm lucky in that I was an old stick-in-the-mud before the pandemic, and so it has hardly changed my life at all. I only get out of the house once a week these days to go grocery shopping between 5 and 6 in the morning -- and I rather like that. Maybe I can also thank six months of Wisconsin winter for my tolerance of being stuck inside the house. I am, however, rather embarrassed by how few books I read these days. Blame it on a reduced attention span, or writing books in my head rather than reading them, or just a lack of enough interest to order some up from the library... I don't know. Better times are ahead.

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    1. Hi Charles

      Thanks for your comment. I do think my attention span and reading has declined. Whether that is age, the pandemic, or procrastination I cannot saw although I suspect the latter. Certainly our activities have been curtailed a bit but it is probably the inability to visit and spend time with relatives who are older or who have some health problems that is probably the worst part of this. Everyone in our circle has avoided the virus so that is good. I agree that better times are ahead and all I need is a bit more gumption to make the most of this enforced leisure. I cannot complain I am too busy to read. I do enjoy your blog. It is certainly eye opening to see the realities of the publishing industry.

      All the best
      Guy

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  2. I'd love to read any future reviews of short stories from an anthology. I'd especially enjoy a story-by-story read through the a Dangerous Visions (the first or second) anthologies. Or, just a few select gems. Hold in there!

    Also, if you ever want to talk via Skype (or Zoom) about a short story, let me know!

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    1. Hi Joachim

      Thanks for you comment and the offer I may take you up on it in the future. I have ignored the Dangerous Visions anthologies until now but looking at them the other night I was as interested in Koontz comments and Ellison's introduction to each story as the work itself. They formed interesting time capsules into the science fiction field during this period. Mirrorshades is another one that intrigues me as being indicative of the "cyberpunk" period. Thanks again.

      All the best
      Guy

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