Slept badly, cried, comfort ate, comfort drank, comfort read, comfort watched old movies, sat staring out of windows, struggled with depression (my own and that of loved ones), had a brain seizure (eventually tentatively diagnosed as a ‘vascular incident’), injured left leg in the seizure so had to stop running, started running again, injured right knee running, stopped running again, performed massive amounts of additional labour neither recognised nor remunerated by my employer, left the EU (which was none of my doing), was governed by a bunch of clowns whose arrogance, greed and incompetence has cost thousands of live and billions of pounds (ditto), and missed seeing y’all.
Somehow, during all that, I managed to finish writing The Anthropocene Unconscious, which I should now be revising rather than writing this, and Andrea mocked up a cover based on my suggestions for Verso, though I suspect they are not going with this image or this subtitle:
And I gave a virtual keynote based on its opening chapters:
- ‘The Anthropocene Unconscious: Geological Disruptions of Discourse’, Anthropocenes: Reworking of the Wound, European Society for Literature, Science and the Arts/Uniwersytet Śląski w Katowicach/Muzeum Śląskie, Katowice, Poland, 17–20 June 2020
I was inundated with requests to say or write things about viruses, contagion, pandemics – and agreed to do these ones because friends (or people Erdogan labelled traitors) asked:
- ‘The Virus Has Seized the Means of Production’, Boston Review (8 May 2020)
- Contributed to ‘Thinking Through the Pandemic’ symposium, Science Fiction Studies 142 (2020), 321–376
- Contributed to ‘Watching Through the Pandemic’, Showcase, TRTWorld 20 April 2020
- ‘Prospectus for a Viral Future: “The Giving Plague”’, Zanzalá: The Brazilian Journal of Science Fiction Studies (2020)—forthcoming
The only other things I managed to write were:
- ‘Cli-Fi’ in J.P. Telotte, The Oxford Handbook of New Science Fiction Cinemas (Oxford UP, forthcoming)
- ‘Tsukamoto Shinya’ in Anna McFarlane, Graham Murphy and Lars Schmeink, eds., 50 Key Figures in Cyberpunk Culture (Routledge, forthcoming)
But I did have two book chapters and two reviews appear:
- ‘Space/Race: Recovering John M. Faucette’ in Isiah Lavender III and Lisa Yaszek, eds, Literary Afrofuturism in the Twenty-First Century (Ohio State UP 2020), 109–127
- ‘Representing the Economy and Neoliberal Subjectivity in Le Capital’ in Homer Pettey, ed., The Films of Costa-Gavras: New Perspectives (Manchester UP 2020), 199–215
- ‘Dan Hassler-Forest, Science Fiction, Fantasy, and Politics: Transmedia World-Building Beyond Capitalism’, Science Fiction Film and Television 13.3 (2020) 434–439
- ‘Aimee Bahng, Migrant Futures: Decolonizing Speculation in Financial Times’, Extrapolation 61.1–2 (2020), 189–193
I did exactly one public f2f event before everything turned to shit, introducing the restored version of Sergei Eisenstein’s Battleship Potemkin for Arnolfini/Southwest Silents, the Arnolfini, Bristol 13 March 2020.
And I examined three PhDs:
- Michelle Clarke, Ecocritical Frontiers in Sub-Saharan Anglo-African Speculative Fiction (SOAS, London 2020)
- Toby Nielson, Ecological Imaginaries: Contemporary Science Fiction Cinema in the Anthropocene (Glasgow University 2020)
- RJ O’Connor, A Miéville Bestiary: Monsters as Commentary on Real and Conceptual Landscapes in the Work of China Miéville (University of Leeds 2020)
Of the two examined via zoom, my leg suffered massive cramps during Toby’s and my mac died partway through Michelle’s (though fortunately it was after we’d told her she had passed).