Whatever Best of 2018
Posted on December 24, 2018 Posted by John Scalzi 5 Comments
Well, that was a year, wasn’t it: a dark cloud of crap with a silver lining in the November elections. I’m kind of hoping it represented the bottom and that 2019 sees us clawing our way back toward the light, but, well. We’ll see, won’t we.
In the meantime, here’s a collection of some of my best pieces here on Whatever this year, if you missed them the first time, or just want to relive them in all their glory. It’s relatively light on pieces specifically about Our Dim President, because 2018 was the year I more or less said “How many different ways can I say he’s bigoted, incompetent crook?” and chose not to write about him in any great detail. Nevertheless he shows up here and there. He’s part of the landscape, he is.
(Also, the piece featuring Neil DeGrasse Tyson was written well prior to the sexual harassment and assault allegations about him coming into general view; it certainly puts a different spin on things. 2018, man.)
The pieces here are in alphabetical, not chronological, order:
- Art and Entertainment and Neil DeGrasse Tyson
- The Fall(?!?!?) of Heinlein
- Four Views of the Same Short Story
- The Gamification of Rhetoric
- Incels and Other Misogynists
- An Interview With Santa’s Lawyer
- Meet Keith Johnson
- Nanette, Hannah Gadsby and Me
- No, In Fact, You Should Not Write For Free
- Notes and Advice from a Book Tour
- Personal Politics
- Private Lives in a Public Era
- The Reputational Reset, Or Not
- Some Observations on Bestseller Lists, December 2018
- Thoughts on A Wrinkle in Time
- Trump is a Racist. Stop Pretending Otherwise.
- Who’s Cool and Who’s Not
And to end on a goofy note, meet my parrot son. It was good to get a little goofy in 2018, from time to time.
I definitely understand your bit on Heinlein better now than before; I’ve spent ages wanting certain fandoms to come back and be popular again, but now they have I feel like someone gave me a monkey’s paw because they are enjoying them
wrongdifferently from me and it makes me feel left out and old, and therefore grumpy about it. My sole consolation is that one day the same thing will happen to today’s brand new young things too. I think I also understand why my grandparents used to always be smiling, all those years ago, at my own youthful certainties now
2018 was a whirlwind of a year. I have quite a bit of optimism for 2019. My prediction is that it will suck until March, and then bounce back. (In fact, there is a nontrivial probability that we will be discussing President Pelosi in 12 months.)
In the UK, March is when it will really start sucking. Most of the world won’t know this though, because we’ll all be too busy fighting each other to the death for the last couple of ibuprofen and breadcrust left in the country to charge our phones before the electricity runs out. Unless there is a sudden outbreak of sanity, of course, but we’re a country who are taught to believe that admitting a mistake is a worse sin than actually making one in the first place.
There’s good stress and bad stress, and 2018 held plenty of both for me.
2019 I plan to retire, do some fishing, play a lot more, write a bit, get a tan. Stress can go eff itself…
What a year! I know everyone has their stories. For me, this was the year of my open heart surgery, two valves replaced. Interesting that one is from a cow the other a pig. I’m now a melding of 3 species (do my glasses add a bionic component?) And let’s not get started on how I feel eating a bacon burger…
But I’m alive and looking forward to many more years and so many books. So, so many books! Keep writing sir, I have the time! ;-)
Take care and wishing you, your family and all the fans here a fantastic 2019. Gonna be good, or in the very least, very interesting.