Wednesday, 14 November 2018

Blogging The Masters

So, long time no update. I have been writing in the meantime, continuing with the reviews for Fantasy Faction, Gingernuts Of Horror and The Fantasy Hive, as well as conducting interviews, which has been wonderful and has given me the chance to speak with many of my literary heroes about their work. Unfortunately time constraints and health issues have meant that it's quietened down at the blog.

However that's not the only way my life has changed in the past couple of years. This September I went part time at the day job, so that I could study part time for a Masters in Science Fiction Literature at the University of Liverpool. I was absolutely thrilled to be accepted, coming from a science rather than a literature background, and have found the course so far to be fascinating and engaging. At the encouragement of some friends, I'm resuscitating the blog as a platform to talk about things related to the Masters as they occur to me. I'm hoping that this will help me formulate my ideas as I think about and digest these texts, and will help me map how my thinking about genre and literature evolve over the two years of the course. I'm also hoping that making the blog less of a formal thing, where I can record my ideas and impressions as they come to me, will help me to get back into the habit of doing it more frequently. I guess we'll see how it goes.

I write this in November, already halfway through the first semester, so it's not a complete record from the start. So far this year I have studied the Bodies in Space module, and the texts we have covered so far are:

Kim Stanley Robinson - Red Mars
Alastair Reynolds - House Of Suns
Nnedi Okorafor - The Book Of Phoenix
Marge Piercy - He, She And It

with the following texts to come:

Greg Egan - Diaspora
Bruce Sterling - Schismatrix

There are also additional reading texts, some of which I have found incredibly stimulating:

Naomi Mitchison - Memoirs Of A Space Woman
Sheri S. Tepper - Raising The Stones
Richard Morgan - Black Man

I'm not sure I'm likely to get around to talking about every one of these, but some of them have certainly raised things I'd like to spend time getting my head around, so we'll see what I get to. Given that I'm teaching myself a crash course in literary theory to catch up with the other students at the same time, and continuing with reviews and interviews, and working at the day job, I guess just watch this space and let's see what happens.