Kool And Sexy And Popular
M John Harrison feels he is beating his head against a brick wall:
Good luck to Richard [Morgan] with his arguments for a realistically human view of humanity. I’ve been making them for many years & no one in f/sf has paid the slightest attention.
Harrison has achieved a lot in his career and yet he still finds himself having to make the same arguments he first made forty years ago. I can see why this is frustrating. The message is being heard in at least some quarters though.
OF Blog of the Fallen has more commentary here, including a long comment from Vacuous Wastrel:
I also think that, although I know you’re a Harrison fan, talking about him as a prophet in the desert cursed by his courage to a short and brutal life, killed by us the unthinking mob, might just possibly be slightly overdramatising, and over-idolising, the man and his importance. He’s not actually a martyr, he’s just not as unpopular as other people. Popularity is not a right, and its absence is no deprivation. His stoning to death by the public consists in him being substantially wealthier, more influential and more popular than most of those who hold less ‘prophetic’ opinions.
Going by what I’ve read said by both of them, I consider Papa Tolkien not only more successful and a better writer than Harrison, I also consider him a better, more admirable, more emulandory person. I’m quite happy with the side I’ve been born (or raised) on. What reason does anyone have to pay attention to Harrison’s hegemonic sociopolitical opinions (which is what the geek-hate ultimately is)?
The last sentence tips it over into comedy, and I’m not sure what “emulandory” means but without having any interest in martyrs or messiahs I know who I would prefer to emulate.