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A nice flan

Consider this is an upload of my brain; I try to keep it honest. It is also just a blog of the billion or so around the internet; this one as likely to be abandoned or to disappear without a trace as any other (save, that is, for whatever trace it leaves in archive.org). I like to think about the blog aspect of it as a mine — after all this is where, taking a metaphor out of Greg Egan’s excellent Diaspora, I try to mine (hopefully) coherent thought out of the bedrock of randomness that my mind is constantly producing. Then I try to process whatever I find into intelligible writing.

A lot of the stuff in here is about Flancia, a place. It is a place that doesn’t exist and it is a part of my mind. It is, I like to think, a utopia of sorts; but not everybody will agree. You, dear reader, may at times think it resembles a dystopia, or just a flavourless fantasy, and I respect your opinion; every untested idea has a probability of being good for a certain definition of the term, for a particular person or society, and at a time and place. I don’t know if I’m right or I’m wrong in any and all of my ideas or assessments, be it morally or factually. I’m just putting it out there; thinking it through. You, the reader, must do your part by considering your own position against the ideas I present here1.

I post new texts early in the process, usually quite raw. The repository I use to store all this is open source. I guess… other people could come live for a while in Flancia too? If nothing else: you’ll be able to see how every piece here evolved, including every embarrassing mistake I made and every complete lapse of logic and reason. It’s unclear to me if this is a good idea, but I like being open by default, so I think I’ll risk it. I want to be as honest as possible in my writing, and I think this fulfills that goal.

As a reader, just remember that some of the stuff in here is akin to a stream of consciousness — every text is alive in some sense as I iterate over it and try different things, add to it, edit, combine; please excuse any temporary craziness you might run into, or (if you can) try to read it as an unskillful homage to Virginia Woolf. Or just the work in progress that it actually is.

My pseudonym doesn’t hide many relevant credentials. I do not claim to be able to either write decent fiction or produce any kind of meaningful research or thought. I am just a curious person, and an optimist — hopefully not delusional. I do fear being the kind of person that likes the idea of writing but doesn’t have the chops for it, or the grit; but otherwise I am content with just being an amateur at everything. Although it gets a bad rap sometimes, amateur basically means “lover of something”. Sure, groan a bit for the appeal to etymology, but that sounds like a good thing to me!

I write mostly in English, although English is not my first language: please excuse the weirdness and occasional discomfort. I do this not because I have a particularly high view of my personal English skills, but because it is the lingua franca of the Internet; as such it allows for maximum reach of writing. As with any lingua franca, I also think by this point it doesn’t belong only to native speakers, and because of this I am relatively at peace with some of my mistakes (you should be too if this applies to you).

I’d like to keep improving at all levels (grammar, style, ideas), as much as I can, for as long as I can; so please send me corrections or comments if you have them.

Next up: manifesto.


  1. And, ideally and if you’re willing, presenting your objections.