Some Remarks

{4.5/5} “You can write a minimalist short story that’s set in a trailer park or a Connecticut suburb that might be considered a literary masterpiece or well-regarded by literary types, but science fiction people wouldn’t find it very interesting unless it had somewhere in it a cool idea that would make them say, ‘That’s interesting. I never thought of that before.'”

Some Remarks by Neal Stephenson, published in 2012

This is a collection of shorter works — a couple of stories, a couple of interviews, and mostly essays. Most of the pieces were previously published in magazines such as Wired. Even if you skip 1 or 2 of the pieces you’ll still find lots to like.

Stephenson talks about literary fiction vs. genre fiction and a (fictional) fight between him and William Gibson. He talks about metaphysics, science, technology, and innovation. A couple of pieces detail his travels as a hacker tourist — in which he talks about electronics in China and Hong Kong (1994) and the longest wire in the world (1996).

Stephenson is one of my favourite authors, and I will read another one of his novels soon. I previously reviewed his book In the Beginning… was the Command Line.

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