I am AWOL, but not entirely. In the wake of Google+’s passing and the mass exodus of game bloggers from that platform, several people have contacted me to ask where exactly I hang out now.
The truth is… I’m just not online all that much to begin with these days. Last year’s gym membership culminated into this year’s outdoor adventure kick… which culminated into a general habit of constantly trying things I’ve never done before… which then turned into me becoming unusually active and outgoing. It’s exhausting!
I don’t play games near as much as I used to. On the other hand, I have a game group that is even better than the high-school group I had back in the day. Odd thing to me is how quickly the games became secondary to the fun of just getting together and hanging out. But it’s still game night either way!
I still have time to get a good read in, though. Most recently I got ahold of Fenton Wood’s Pirates of the Electromagnetic Waves… which pivots effortlessly between weird pulp horror, fairy stories and tall tales. Here’s my tweet-sized review:
What this book does is it takes all of the subversive, dystopian impulses of science fiction between 1940 and 1980 and it turns it all inside out. This is the kind of fiction we could have had if publishing had not been weaponized and turned toward cultural suicide.
The mysterious author of this fascinating work came out of hiding to respond:
I’ve avoided social media so far, but I had to thank you for the good word. This book came as a surprise to me too! I just wanted to write a pure adventure story with no politics.
Pretty awesome! Definitely check it out.
Meanwhile, Grames Barnaby cites both me an Jon Del Arroz “leading a decent charge to restore Christian stoic ideals in fiction.” Wah. Gotta say, it’s very gratifying to be associated with the Christian faith in even a modest way. Honestly, I never imagined that there could be an actual revival of that sort. The people that are actually bringing this stuff forward and putting it into the marketplace are the real heroes in my book.
One of those guys is definitely Jon Mollison. Dig this from his most recent novel:
Tiberan, uneasy spoke up. His words echoed those of the bandit. “Are you sure about this Primus? These men aren’t… civilized.”
“They don’t speak with two meanings, you mean?” I asked him harshly. “They don’t take their oathes lightly? They don’t hide behind paper laws and clever word tricks before slipping a knife into a man’s back?” I snorted. “If that’s what it means to lack civility, I’ll take barbarism.”
But not everyone in the pulp scene is hitting the mark like that. Broadswords and Blasters makes clear how they don’t really want a revival that goes all the way with this stuff:
“Much of old-school pulp is unfortunately EMBLEMATIC of limited cultural ideals that we have no interest in propagating. As such, we encourage DIVERSE characters and welcome stories that SUBVERT the standard pulp formula.”
Here’s my take on the correct “Regress Harder” approach to bringing an authentic pulp ethos back to the table:
“Much of old-school pulp is EMBLEMATIC of superior cultural ideals that infuse the West’s most inspiring tales of myth and wonder. As such, we encourage truly HEROIC characters and welcome stories that SUBVERT today’s dreary literary establishment.”
Anyway, I threw this post together to let y’all know that with the passing of Google+ I am now on Twitter here. I’m also on MeWe as “Jeffro Johnson” due to my mates heading over there, but I’m pretty lousy at using it just yet.
Look me up if you’re over that way!