I was going to make one more post before the new year, and I noticed that my next post would be my 42nd of the year--an auspicious number for a science fiction and philosophy blog!
This is fewer posts than any other full year since I started this blog in December 2014. But that's okay. In fact, this has been one of my lessons of pandemic life: it's okay to do less. Sure, life is short and all of our days are numbered even if we don't know what that number is, but on the other hand sometimes you have to take the advice of that great sage of the 1980's, Ferris Bueller, and take a minute to look around at life once in awhile or you might miss it.
I've learned how to rest. How to take naps and walks more regularly.
Besides, I've been busy enough. I did a bit more travel in 2022 than in 2020 or 2021, but not too much. I wrote a bit more fiction after attending a workshop on fiction writing for philosophers. After that, I started my new part-time gig as a first reader ("slush reader") for Escape Pod, which has been an interesting experience so far and no doubt helped my own writing as well.
I published some non-fiction, including a chapter in Dune and Philosophy: Minds, Monads, and Muad'Dib (available now across the Imperium!). I read some books, meeting, but not exceeding, my Goodreads goal for the year. "Meeting but not exceeding" seems like a good motto for 2023.
I did keep up my pandemic journal that I started in 2020, but I've written in it less and haven't felt the need to post it here lately, which is fine. Maybe I'll do another public journal post when/if the pandemic actually ends. Actually, this post somehow became more of a journal entry than I intended when I started it. But that's okay! Another lesson of recent years: it's okay if things go otherwise than you intended.
And I spent a lot of time with my loved ones, including my cats, who enjoy that I've become a lot more of a homebody the last couple years. And we bought a house (thanks to the pandemic freeze on student loan payments), which makes being at home a lot cozier for everyone.
Looking forward to 2023, I will watch a bit of the Twilight Zone marathon on New Year's Day, and then I have a sabbatical in the spring term. I won't be teaching for the regular semester for the first time since the fall of 2011 when I had a dissertation fellowship.
I'll probably read and write some stuff about classical Indian Buddhist philosophy (especially Vasubandhu and Ratnakīrti: the project I originally intended to start in 2020, which won't go the way I intended it then, but that's okay). I might start writing something about Ursula Le Guin and Octavia Butler and their Daoist and Buddhist influences. I'll probably write some more fiction, and who knows, maybe publish something. And take lots of naps and walks.
And I have some travel plans for conferences in Denver and San Francisco, maybe a road trip or two, at least one to a beach somewhere and another to visit my Midwestern folks, and maybe yet another to some US states I have yet to visit. Who knows where the road will take me?
And there will be some conventions, starting with Chattacon in a few weeks. And Hugo reading this summer.
So I think I'll be busy, but hopefully not too busy in 2023. I'll do enough, but not too much. And it will be okay if not everything goes according to my plans, because, after all, most of life, the universe, and everything happens outside of my intentions, and maybe sometimes those are the best parts of this wild, mixed up experience of being a bit of the universe that has temporarily coalesced into a human life.
Wherever you have coalesced, dear reader, I wish you and your beloved life forms a happy new year of doing enough, but not too much!