Why are supposedly serious and profound fiction often difficult and boring to read? Is there a necessary connection between the two? I argue yes, a bit, but it's hard to tell when the connection is illusory and fake. Read more (23 min, 5700 words).
To celebrate my 100th post, I wrote 100 haikus as summaries of each post so far. Read more (8 min, 2000 words).
I sum up 2020 and digress a little about writing, creativity and how things become part of the past. Read more (14 min, 3500 words).
A tale on the nature of footnotes, writing in general, and other things, told almost entirely in footnotes. Read more (18 min, 5500 words).
I pick up and elaborate on some parts that were cut from my review of "The AI Does Not Hate You", including some riffing on mind dumps, weirdness, tensions between the rationalist community and polite society, my conservatism-free youth, the conservatism of Star Trek and my hopes for AI stagnation.
Read more (17 min, 4300 words).
I try to sum up 2019, a year that started out well but took a weird turn about a third of the way through. Read more (6 min, 1400 words.)
If we want to sound friendly and appealing when presenting thoughts about human behavior we should avoid analytical, distancing language. But what if the value of an analytical and distancing perspective is part of what you want to communicate? Read more (11 min, 3500 words).
I respond at length to criticism against an article about erisology in The Atlantic, developing the concept further in the process. Read more (23 min, 7700 words).
I wrote a spontaneous piece on the tensions between cultural/intellectual accessibility and ambition that under later scrutiny wasn't quite up to snuff. Instead of publishing something sub par or discard it I used it as a jumping off point for discussing the nature of creative work, writing and thinking in general. Read more (13 min, 4200 words).
I summarize 2018 as a successful year and discuss what works and what doesn't with my blogging: it's getting better but higher ambitions and awareness of a bigger audience means I still write much less efficiently than I could be. Read more (6 min, 1800 words).