Here’s me doing something that I forgot I could do with the new computer. The screen tilts back about sixty degrees and because it has a touchscreen it also has an onscreen keyboard that you can call up. So right now I’m standing at my desk with the screen tilted, typing on the screen. The onscreen keyboard is not an optimal typing experience by any means, but it’s doable for short bursts. Inasmuch as I am constantly being told that sitting at my desk hastens my inevitable death, this might be a way to get some occasional standing time. If nothing else, it reminds me that my new computer is kind of cool, and that I live in the future.
Because I’m all about giving the people what they want!
In which the author of the piece comes away impressed with my being “a master of saying things without actually saying them,” i.e., talking about Morning Star without giving away details of plot, gameplay and the like. Yes, indeed — I work with them there word thingies all the time! In any event, still an interesting interview for those of you curious about our work to date. Also, I’m amused at how that particular picture seems to be becoming my default bio picture. Here’s the link to the story.
I have been asked in e-mail whether I have any thoughts on the “fiscal cliff” deal, and the answer is: Meh. I don’t find the substance of the deal particularly impressive. I think it has two primary functions. One, it gives Obama a victory over the GOP, regardless of whether that victory has any genuine value outside of the fact of the victory; Two, it means that a non-trivial number of Republicans, in both the House and Senate, have voted to increase taxes.
Of the two, the latter function is rather more important to me. I certainly don’t expect the GOP to break down and go on a taxation frenzy anytime soon, but any crack in the delusion that higher taxes are never useful or needed and/or the separate but equal delusion that the best policy for anything is to cut taxes, is a laudable event. I want to believe this is a first sign of the GOP beginning a long, hard trek back to being a genuinely fiscally responsible party and indeed to sanity in general. We’ll see if it happens.
Otherwise, again, meh. If someone wants to tell me why I should feel otherwise about this deal than I do, either positively or negatively (and can do so in a polite, non-foamy fashion), please let me know in the comments.
Like many people who have a hopefully realistic sense of self, I don’t use the new year to crack off a list of resolutions, the word being used in the modern sense of “things I have no intent of doing more than once, and then half-heartedly.” The new year does frequently come with a few days freed up from the usual work week constraints, however, plus there’s the fact that arbitrarily or not we really do reset lots of things with the new year, which allows one time to reflect on things one would like to do in the future. For me, here are some of those things.
1. Continue to get better with my time management, so I have more time to do the things I want to do, including stuff not related to writing.
2. Likewise do better with organization, which covers everything from keeping my office from collapsing into chaos to, you know, mailing shit when I’m supposed to.
3. Do a little better in staying in touch with friends, and not just through here, Twitter and Facebook.
4. Write some different things, for fun and to learn how to do them.
5. Continue to practice my guitar/ukulele, because it’s fun.
6. Read more, because I’m behind.
7. Get my weight back down to the 160 – 165 range (about 10lbs to go there), and maybe tone up a bit, because being a flabby middle-aged dude kind of sucks.
And that’s pretty much it. The nice thing is I think most of these are achievable; they just require me to get out of my own head a little more. We’ll see how it goes through the rest of the year.
For those of you who crave such information, a rough idea of the next twelve months in John Scalzi.
Here’s what you may expect from me, output-wise, in 2013:
Redshirts: The trade paperback edition of my current novel Redshirts will drop into stores on January 15. Yes, the same day as the episodic debut of The Human Division. January 15 is clearly a big day for me this year.
The Mallet of Loving Correction: Selected Writings From Whatever, 2008 -2012: The hardcover collection of some of the best recent entries from this very blog will become available September 13, which is, not at all coincidentally, the 15th anniversary of Whatever.
Morning Star: The video game I am working on with game maker Industrial Toys is currently slated to appear this year. More details on the release date as we go along. You can’t rush this stuff, folks.
Secret Project None of You Even Knew Existed Until This Very Second, More Details of Which I Cannot Yet Reveal, Deal With It: Also will be out this year, by which you may infer that much of the work on it is already completed. You’re gonna think it’s pretty damn cool.
As noted previously, my plan this year is to scale back my public travel schedule pretty significantly. That said, I will be at the following:
Immortal Confusion: I’m primarily going to be there to hang out with friends, but I will be doing a couple of panels, a signing and a reading, because among other things, it’s right after the launch of the Human Division episodes.
Nebula Awards Weekend: This will be my last Nebula Weekend as President of SFWA. We’ll be giving out Nebula awards and honoring Gene Wolfe as our latest Grand Master.
It’s likely I will be at LoneStarCon 3, this year’s Worldcon in San Antonio, although this hasn’t been confirmed.
Otherwise, you probably shouldn’t expect to see me at a science fiction convention this year in public mode.
For those who are asking whether I will tour for The Human Division: It seems likely although nothing is confirmed yet. Likewise, I will have a couple one-off appearances over the course of the year in support of one or the other of the books. Those have not been confirmed yet, however. I will let you know when they are.
With the notable exception of 101 Uses For a Spare Goat, I have no upcoming books under contract. Please do not panic, this does not mean that I do not have any ideas for future novels. I do have ideas for future novels. What I don’t have are contracts for these ideas. I am not concerned about this, so there is no reason for you to be concerned about it either. I think the chances are pretty good I can sell whatever novel I write next.
Generally speaking I have made it a standard policy not to talk in any detail about possible future projects; that way no one is disappointed if something I’m working on either doesn’t pan out or requires a longer schedule. What I will say is that I do intend to write a novel this year, and if it’s the novel I think is most likely, it will be stand-alone. I have a couple of other projects I’m thinking about for this year, but novels pay the mortgage, so the realization of those other projects will largely be contingent on good progress on a novel.
Suffice to say I don’t intend to spend 2013 just shooting zombies in the head. I want you guys to have things to read in 2014 and beyond. That said, one of the reasons for me to cut back my travel schedule in 2013 is to spend a little more time relaxing and enjoying myself. Which is to say one of my big projects in 2013 is working on the correct balance between work and life. I think that’s a pretty good project to invest time in.