Wednesday, September 25, 2019

SFF and Psychology

I asked on Twitter for recommendations of SF writers interested in psychology, maybe with a slant toward hard sf (whatever that means). The thread still grows even though I have long since ceased feeding it heart. Here are some:

Alfred Bester (The Demolished Man)
Angela Carter (The Passion of New Eve)
Ann Leckie
Anne McCaffrey (Crystal Singers)
Anthony Burgess (A Clockwork Orange)
B.A. Chepaiti (Fear books)
Brian Aldiss (The Primal Urge)
C.R. Dudley
Chris Beckett
Connie Willis (Crosstalk)
Cory Doctorow (Walkaway, 'Chicken Little')
Diana Wynne Jones ('Carol Oneir's Hundredth Dream')
Doris Lessing (Canopus in Argos)
Edgar Allan Poe
Elizabeth Moon (Speed of Dark)
Emma Newman
George Orwell (Nineteen Eighty-Four)
Greg Bear (</Slant>)
Greg Egan
Gregory Benford (The Stars in Shroud)
Ian Watson (The Embedding)
Isaac Asimov (Foundation)
Jack Vance (Languages of Pao)
James Tiptree Jnr
Karen Ripley (Slow World)
Kingsley Amis ('Something Strange')
Linda Nagata
Matthew de Abaitua (The Red Men, etc.)
Michael Crichton (The Terminal Man)
Michael Swanwick (Vacuum Flowers)
N.K. Jemisin (Broken Earth)
Nancy Kress (Beggars in Spain)
Nicola Griffiths (Cherryh's Cyteen, Ammonite)
Pat Cadigan (Mindplayers)
Pat Murphy ('Rachel in Love')
Peter Watts (Blindsight, Into the Rift)
Philip K. Dick (The Alphane Moon, etc.)
Raphael Carter ('Congenital Agenesis of Gender Ideation')
Samuel R. Delaney (Babel 17)
Theodore Sturgeon (More Than Human)
Ursula Le Guin (Left Hand of Darkness, Lathe of Heaven, etc.)
Vernor Vinge (A Deepness in the Sky)
Zenna Henderson ('The People')

There is also Psychology: A Literary Introduction (ed. Laura Corlew and Charles Waugh).

An essay by Tansy Rayner Roberts on neurodiversity and mental health treatment in TV SFF.

Gavin Miller has an academic book on SF and pyschology in the works.

Tuesday, September 17, 2019

Recent Stuff

Over at the Vector site, my brief note on last week's SFF conference in London, Productive Futures: The Political Economy of Science Fiction.

I have a novelette in Gross Ideas, an anthology about architecture and degrowth. The anthology includes Cory Doctorow, Camilla Grudova, Will Self, Mill & Jones, Joel Blackledge, Sophie Mackintosh, Steve Webb, Lesley Lokko, Rachel Armstrong, Lev Bratishenko, Torgeir Rebolledo Pedersen, Maria Smith, Robin Nicholson, Deepak Unnikrishnan, Edward Davey, and Jane Yeh. Edited by Edwina Attlee, Phineas Harper and Maria Smith, with design by Studio Christopher Victor.

We've just released the Call for Papers for the next themed issue of Vector, which will be about speculative fiction and art. Feel free to share, and get in touch with your ideas. If you're interested in writing for Vector in other capacities, also please do get in touch.

The latest issue of Vector, co-edited with Polina Levontin and Michelle Clarke, was all about African and Afrodiasporic SFF. If you'd like a copy, join the BSFA or get in touch with me. Some of the articles are on the Vector website.

WorldCon wasn't too long ago: here's a report.

And my essay 'Away Day: Star Trek and the Utopia of Merit' is in the latest issue of Big Echo. It's mostly about Manu Saadia's Trekonomics, and it thinks a bit about the role of gift economies in recent political SF and SF-influenced political theory. It takes issue with this:
Saadia’s Trekonomics, I think, invites Star Trek to join the satirical zeitgeist of Walkaway, If/Then, ‘Nose Dive’ et al. It offers the Federation as a society of abundance co-ordinated by egalitarian mechanisms of reciprocity. It recognises the close relationship between work and reputation in the Federation, and discerns immense informal social pressure to pursue status and success. At the same time, it supposes, forms or aspects of labour which traditionally have been difficult to automate – care work, emotional labour, creativity, teaching, “learning, making, and sharing” – take on enhanced significance in the Federation, softening this pressure. Pre-Fordist craft is offered as a point of comparison: “the organization of work in the Federation resembles older, preindustrial forms of arrangements.” Furthermore, “work in the Federation fulfills the deep human need for belonging and recognition. Work is another way to love and be loved and to express one’s unique sensibility.” Saadia’s Federation is certainly not primitivist! – its technology generates its abundance, and is instrumental in distributing it – but it is an attack on both contemporary capitalism and on the seductive nostrums of techno-meritocracy.
I'm hoping to write a sequel eventually.

One or two mini-reviews recently up on Goodreads.

The novel that I thought had found a home maybe hasn't after all. But hey.

Poetry stuff: Sad Press has just published Maria Sledmere's nature sounds without nature sounds. Poetry & Work: Essays on work in modern and contemporary Anglophone poetry, a collection I edited with Ed Luker, is in the final proofing stages and should be out by December.

I've also just written a fairly substantial draft of a series of essays dealing with the "marvellous moneys" stuff I've been working on over the past few years, i.e. money and value in SFF. If anyone wants a peek, let me know.