{and then} – a writing life beyond reviews

{insert obligatory introductory section detailing how I learned to read, what I read once left to my own devices, my life as a young library user, how I “found” fantasy and science fiction and so on. Because that is how I always seem to start these “state of me and my critical practice” articles when I write them}

Or not, because I have trained myself to delete rather than publish them. It interests me that almost invariably when I write such articles (and over the years I’ve begun a few) I do so by laying out my history as a reader, as a genre reader and so forth. Why do I do that? I presume I do it to establish my authority and emphasise that I am knowledgeable about the genres I review in. That is, I know what I’m talking about. I’ve never questioned why I do it. I barely noticed until recently. And now I’ve noticed I can’t stop noticing it. I have binned so many articles half-written because I keep on doing the same thing. I bore myself rigid even as I’m doing it. It’s become like a ritual. I can’t begin anything until I do this. But still I do it. I did it with the first version of this, and then binned five hundred words. I am almost about to do it now, so let’s end this paragraph and move on.

Oddly, the one thing I never seem to mention is how I came to start writing reviews and criticism (maybe I get too bored before I get to that point). That’s simple. Paul Kincaid listened to me talking about books and, when I said I could never be a reviewer, gave me a book to review for Vector, commenting only that all I had to do was to write down the things I’d been saying. (Now you know who to blame.) There was, as I recall, no theory of reviewing, no particular way to review; I just did it. I’ve looked at that first review fairly recently, and it’s not bad. Naïve in places, and prone to making sweeping judgements and statements, and I would undoubtedly do it very differently now, but it’s not bad for a first attempt.

What is interesting at this point is why I thought I could never be a reviewer. At such a distance of time, I’m guessing, of course, but I suspect I thought one needed a university education in order to be able to review; to be better read than I was; and possibly, just possibly, I’d noticed that most of the reviews I read were written by men. Especially in the amateur genre press. I doubt I’d fully theorised any of that, but I am sure I’d already noticed that men talked about books, not women. It had never occurred to me that anyone might be interested in my opinions. Certainly, I would not have dreamed of foisting them on anyone other than Paul Kincaid, because no one else seemed interested.

{fast forward thirty years, and several hundred reviews and pieces of criticism for venues such as Vector, Paperback Inferno, the BSFG Newsletter, Foundation, Interzone, Strange Horizons, The Zone, and this blog, Paper Knife}

My dissatisfaction with my critical practice seems in part to be cyclical, in that I have often gone through periods of discontent and then got back in the groove. But each time this happens, getting back seems to get harder. Limpets, which are creatures of habit, return to the same patch of rock after their nightly perambulations; to the exact same spot, to the point where they wear a groove in the rock, into which they can then settle. You have to wonder if, after a while, they go there because that tiny patch of rock fits them better than any other patch of rock in the world, and it’s just easier and more comfortable to keep going back. Does habit enslave the limpet or has the limpet just figured out what it takes to make life easy.

I am not a limpet though I can see the attraction of the limpet lifestyle. Just keep doing what you do, over and over, bedding in, digging deep. For some people, that works, perhaps because they’ve already reached a point where they are utterly secure in what they’re doing and they can move on to polishing the skills they’ve painstakingly acquired. I still have too much work left to do and the groove only ever fits for a little while before it is time to move on. And here we are again.

{skip boring recitation of dissatisfactions with current reviewing practice}

Well, not entirely, because, as Paul Kincaid pointed out the other night, it is to some extent my own fault that I spend so much of my time reviewing shitty first novels by writers who seem to have been untimely ripped from their literary wombs and spat out prematurely by the publishing machine to satisfy … well, satisfy what or who? Reviewing first novels too often feels remarkably like marking first-year undergraduate essays. Same damn mistakes, over and over. Somewhere in the back of my head lurks a template review, I’m quite sure. I suspect I keep on reviewing them because I long to find those first novels that, while they might be messy and unruly, at least show signs of promise and make me want to jump up and down and say ‘look at this. Look. At. THIS! It’s amazing. I cannot wait to read this writer’s next novel, to see what they do next.’ No, I don’t remember me doing that much either.

It is much easier to write about something you don’t like; in effect the review writes itself, though I flatter myself that if I write a negative review of a novel, I at least make it clear why the novel sucks rather than simply performing variations on a theme of “dear god, this novel is bad”. My reviews tend to be quite heavy on the whys of awfulness.

But perhaps this is where the doubt is creeping in. Very often now, I see novels I have read and believe to be flawed being trumpeted as “Best Thing Evah”. While I naturally allow a certain latitude for taste, it nonetheless seems that everything is the best thing ever these days. I find this at best disconcerting, at worst concerning. Concerning because frequently nowadays I find myself doubting my own judgement. That is, not my judgement of novels on a book-by-book basis but I wonder more and more if I’m not in danger of becoming like one of those people who is convinced that no decent sf has written since Asimov or Clarke put the covers over their keyboards. Well, maybe not that extreme, but am I really keeping up with changing tastes? Or is an awful lot of contemporary sff as flimsy and insubstantial as I think it is? Am I too demanding as a reviewer? Too fussy? Looking for things it is unreasonable of me to expect to be present?

{insert digression on taste, aesthetics, and whether I should be tailoring my reviews to anyone’s tastes but my own}

For some time, I have been teetering on the brink of giving up writing reviews and criticism, altogether mostly because I wasn’t clear why I should keep going. Why was I struggling to keep writing when the very thought of opening another book, any book, made me feel sick, let alone actually writing about it.

{pause to wince because that sounds like I’m asking for approbation and validation. I’m not. Actually, possibly I am, but don’t indulge me or patronise me. I’m an adult, I shall work this out on my own}

The simplest answer is that I couldn’t imagine not doing it. Having been been a critic, reviewer (and latterly a blogger) for thirty years, it would be hard to just walk away from it. But if I were to write my reviews in a notebook, for my own personal consumption, would that be enough? Obviously not, so equally obviously there was (is?) a part of me that wants to be a public rather than a private critic. But how public is a specialist publication (“nobody reads print reviews” said an anonymous author a while ago, someone I am sure pays no attention whatsoever to print reviews of their own work) or a low-traffic blog (my stats suggest my blog exists mainly to do US students’ Frankenstein homework for them). Is the simple act of consigning a piece of criticism to a blog enough?

{those are rhetorical questions, and anyway, I have switched off comments on my blog. Or have I}

Then, as is sometimes the way with the internet, the source of so many of our trials and joys nowadays, a series of very different articles all turned up in my aggregator at around the same time and I began to make some sense, finally, of the source of my discontents this time around.

It isn’t the texts that are the problem (well, some of them are, but we know I am quite capable of handling that). It’s the reading culture that’s changed. Or at any rate, my relationship with it.

{here, for the second time, we are going to step around the autobiographical material I would normally insert here, save to observe that, as previously noted, for a long time my reading culture consisted of reading books, reading other people talking about books in the commercial and small presses, and talking to Paul Kincaid about books. Later, it took in various apas (amateur press associations – like bulletin boards, but on paper), and then came the internet}

LiveJournal never really worked for me as a venue for discussing books. It ought to have done, given that I was in charge of my own journal but I learned quite quickly that leaving things open gave total strangers (that is, people who had followed me of their own volition) the apparent right to lecture me on what content I should include, and how my journal should look, but that making the journal “friends only” brought its own difficulties. Joining reading communities revealed the exciting world of people who judged their reading prowess exclusively by how many books they could get through in a year (the thinner the better, the more the merrier) and presented me with my first ethical dilemmas (I never listed manuscripts I worked on, nor anything I read only part of – I read parts of a lot of textbooks). And then I realised I didn’t like listing my year’s reading anyway, because although I think it was supposed to provide hooks for conversation and discussion, it ended up looking like boasting.

Bulletin boards and discussion forums, I never really mastered, in part because dial-up was expensive, and later, when I got broadband, I found it really difficult to keep up with discussions I wasn’t in on the beginning of. Endless reading, to end up adding the not tremendously helpful “me, too” because everything had already been said.

{I rarely engage in conversation or discussion on the internet because of this sort of thing. Also, I am poor at boasting. However, I am a top-level lurker}

Oddly, Twitter, once I discovered client apps, has worked better than anything else as a forum for casual discussion, despite the format being utterly inimical to discussion. But there is nothing people love more than challenging the limitations of a format. Multi-tweet explanations are an art form in their own right, and I was lucky to fall in with people who liked to tweet links and recommendations. Twitter has at times been a powerhouse of suggestion-trading. It’s been fun.

And yes, that is a past tense. It’s not that it isn’t still fun but the dynamic has changed as people’s interests have shifted, and as a whole slew of special-interest groups (publishers, agents, editors, authors, or people who would like to be publishers, agents, editors, authors, or something, anything in publishing) have experimented with social media. A couple of weeks ago, Jonathan McCalmont posted a very interesting article at Ruthless Culture, called What Price, Your Critical Agency? which made me feel as though he’d been poking around in my brain as he seemed to have articulated a lot of my discomfort with what has been going on these last few years, and particularly more recently.

It was always the exciting cover reveal tweets that got me in the early days: “Omigod, omigod, large commercial publisher has given little old me the chance to take an early look at this cover you’ll all be seeing anyway any day soon. Aren’t I lucky, aren’t you jealous?” As I have never bought books according to their covers, I found this a little baffling. Obviously, it was just one more way of flagging up that X book is being published soon. These days, either I’ve managed to mute or unfollow the very worst offenders, or else, and I hope this is nearer the truth, most publishers have realised that letting loose the dogs of cover-shilling on social media annoys a lot of people. I don’t mind seeing authors and editors I know being excited about their covers (though cynically, we know they’ve probably been asked to be excited, just as we all know they’re generally not going to be out there weeping and gnashing their teeth unless a publisher has done something truly appalling, like egregiously whitewashing the protagonist, at which point they’re right to shout about it publicly) but I’m a critic and reviewer and as a rule covers are not my business. I did wonder, as I looked at the rebranding of the Apex Books of World SF, what the etiquette was when confronted with a truly ugly cover. It turns out you say what’s on your mind and everyone ignores you, which is probably as it should be. But it really is ugly.

Jonathan’s post talks about cultural ecosystems and the relationships between publishers and reviewers. In part, he focuses on the currency of review copies and what a reviewer’s obligation might be if they accept a free review copy, and what a publisher’s expectation of a reviewer might be. Needless to say, it’s something I’ve thought about a lot, particularly the issue of neutrality. As a rule, I don’t chase publishers for review copies because I write too irregularly for my own blog, and because, bizarre as it might sound, it never occurred to me until fairly recently that I could and indeed should actually pitch reviews to sites rather than be content with what was offered to me by the publications I have worked for.

{we will take as read the discussion about how women do not put themselves forward, unlike men, though it probably explains why, after thirty years, comparatively few people have still ever heard of me}

For that matter, publishers do not beat a path to my door to offer me unsolicited review copies. I’m not remotely surprised by this, given I do not write user-friendly reviews that overflow with the kind of comments that make good sales copy. Nonetheless I am often reminded that I am at a tangent to that particular reviewing community when I see the tweets about books received, the photos of books sent by publishers, and so forth. And yes, of course I’m sometimes envious, because austere as I might appear, I like the validation of a freebie as much as the next person. Having said that, it also reminds me of nothing so much as queuing to get into a fashionable club, hoping to be one of the lucky few to be allowed in, having dressed innovatively with scrupulous regard to the club’s dress code. It’s all very aspirational but I have always known that were I in that queue, I wouldn’t be getting in.

{I could at this point boast outrageously about the proof we found waiting for us when we got home from our holiday because, seriously, it is awesome … but I hope I am better than that, not least because it wasn’t sent so that I would promote the book but as a thoughtful act from an old friend, and I want to retain a shred or two of integrity}

Jonathan lays out the difficulties that ensue if/when you get caught up in the New Shiny hype culture. How prepared are you to sacrifice yourself to commercial interests to keep yourself in books to review? Given my particular tastes, not very (though I might just be persuaded to sell my soul to a couple of smaller presses that publish a lot of fiction in translation). Wading through endless epic identikit fantasies isn’t really how I want to spend my time. And yet a niggling thought persists – assuming I want people to look at my blog, how do I get them there, if not by reviewing nice new books? Of course I’d like more traffic at Paper Knife – most people want to know that their writing is being read, and I am not immune to that – but at what cost?

“Why do so many bloggers make it look as though they are working an extra job as unpaid interns in the entertainment industry?” asks Jonathan, before going on to suggest that “One possible answer is that we surrender our free time in return for a sense of community”. Which was once true, perhaps, but it’s fairly clear that some view blogging as a step on the road to finding employment in the industry: a presence on social media becomes a way of performing “professionalism” in order to attract the attention of actual professionals and parley an entry. It’s the dance-club queue all over again. And yes, I’m a little envious of them, too, but at the same time I am disinclined to go through the necessary hoops of compromise to achieve such a goal. And anyway, I know realistically I’m an unglamorous nitpicking copy editor and proofreader type rather than a promotions and publicity sort of person. But still … For that matter, most people seem to regard being a critic as a remarkably unglamorous pursuit (though someone did accuse me of trying to sleep my way to the top, when Paul Kincaid and I became a couple – clearly, the Reviews Editorship of Vector was more highly prized than either of us had ever realised).

{name one famous contemporary copy editor or proofreader. Famous for being a copyeditor or proofreader. No, I can’t either}

And that is the answer to one question I have, insofar as I know now what I don’t want. It is important to me to be able to write freely: entertaining other people is an incidental benefit rather than a goal. As to what I do want? I have no idea.

{here we might note that I have now written some three thousand words, which is of course far too much for anyone to read, as we are constantly being told. This, though, is another advantage of having a blog of my own. I can write as much as I want or need to}

The second blog post that felt as though it was scraping out my brain came from Abigail Nussbaum, another blogger whose work I admire a great deal. In Ten, a post celebrating the tenth anniversary of Asking the Wrong Questions, she explores some of the same issues as Jonathan, and indeed, I see, rereading her post after a few days, in not dissimilar terms to those I’ve been using here – imitation is the sincerest form of flattery, truly. We seem to have reached similar conclusions about our blogs, though I’d venture to suggest that Abigail’s blog is a more consistent artefact than mine, not least because it is five years older, but also because she is a fiercer writer than I am. (I was rather startled, though, to discover that Paper Knife has persisted, more or less, for almost five years – my longest-running personal project, I think.)

It was this comment, though, that really resonated with me: “I think that there is a danger in writing to please only yourself that Jonathan doesn’t touch on, which is that you can end up talking to yourself, spewing words onto the screen for no purpose but to get them out of your head, expending your time and energy on something that doesn’t mean anything to anyone but yourself”.

I’ve wondered quite often if Paper Knife isn’t, at heart, a vanity project. I write and write (and write and write – I wonder now why I didn’t call this TL:DR), pour out my thoughts, press “send” and then start all over again. When I look at my stats, the most “popular” post is that throwaway piece I did about giving up on Dr Who; and the only reason that garnered so much attention was because it got picked up on Metafilter and (mercifully to a lesser extent) Reddit. We Need To Talk About Dragons comes in second place, mainly because it was picked up by Making Light, and after that come the post about the Royal National Theatre’s double production of Frankenstein (now I think about it, probably because it mentions Benedict C*mberbatch), and my post about Town of Cats by Sakutarō Hagiwara, and that only because there is a Murakami story of the same name.

{please, no sympathy. I’ve brought it entirely on myself with my choice of topics, and none of this is about the hits, right}

With such a wealth of material to draw on, Abigail is now starting to produce themed ebooks, drawing on her archive, which is a fantastic idea, but not one I can follow, at least not until Paper Knife develops a more solid foundation and I find an underlying line of enquiry I’m happy with. Did I mention I wasn’t happy with my writing? I am now haunted by the question: do I have anything to say? Really, anything to say, or am I just spewing out words for the sake of it?

{I was reading Gary K. Wolfe’s review of Paul Kincaid’s Call and Response, in which he talked at some length about the overarching themes in Paul’s work. It made me realise that I really don’t have anything except a pile of reviews I’ve done. There are no connections between them – at least, nothing that seems obvious other than that I wrote them all – nothing that can be stitched together to make a coherent narrative}

But where to go next? It may be that this is a thing that will emerge naturally, with time, though one could wish that after nearly five years it was showing some signs of appearing, and that it would do so before I die of terminal frustration. But never mind.

{Meanwhile, David Hebblethwaite nails it in under 140 characters}

It had become clear to me during the course of writing this essay that I have become trapped by the review format, even before David posted that tweet, but also that I maybe work better with a project. The Shortlist Project exemplifies that approach (though it is worth noting that once again it is all about reviews). I was gratified by its being shortlisted for a BSFA Award and I am, to an extent, still pleased with it. Having said that, I have also come to realise that any attempt to redo it is probably a bad idea. I didn’t blog the Hugos last year, despite doing the reading, because I injured my hand and couldn’t type comfortably for some time. Once the hand had recovered, the project had lost impetus (the awards had been made). This year? Life is short and I really don’t want to spend it writing about shit fiction.

{also, turn these words into a well-known phrase or saying: barrel, fish, shooting}

I have one ongoing intermittent project which I will return to as time allows, but I don’t want Paper Knife to become obviously themed or to be transformed into a series of research projects. Which doesn’t give me that many other options. I keep coming back to the question of what is missing here.

One thing that has struck me of late is that what is lacking in my writing is “joy”. Not literal “I am so happy about writing this” joy but something closer to “jouissance”. I’m not trying to go the whole philosophical hog here, but I think I am looking for something closer to the idea of intensity in pleasure, of somehow being close to the edge almost to the point of suffering for that pleasure. What set me thinking about it was Renay’s most recent column at Strange Horizons – Communities: Weight of History. I admire Renay’s writing a great deal: I am fascinated by it in part because it’s so very different from what I do. I’m always struck by how intensely she experiences things, be they novels, tv shows or fandoms, and how this intensity, which I am going to term “jouissance” for the sake of convenience, suffuses her writing. My writing, framed as it is by interminable years as a student, has become rather austere and formal, I think. Renay writes widely, I write narrowly, and I don’t think I benefit from that constraint at all. Which is not to say that I’m planning to start writing like Renay, because, well, I can’t – I’m not Renay. But I am interested in how she is able to write about reading culture as a lived thing rather than, as I feel a lot of people do, as a performed thing.

Weight of History begins as a discussion of Renay’s decision to read some older science fiction – and here it is worth bearing in mind how certain groups of people are rather too fond of saying that one can’t write about science fiction without doing the homework first. To write about contemporary writers one must know all the old stuff to understand how the newbies are in conversation with them.

{I used to believe this. Of late, I have come to the conclusion that this is actually bollocks. Or worse, a most pernicious form of gatekeeping, because it’s been a long time since anyone could keep up with everything, and nor should they try}

This is the pith of the experience for Renay: “Instead, by focusing on older work, what I’ve rediscovered is the subtle pressure to read books by men that I keep having to crawl out from under. It’s ruined my excitement for the entire process. Fair or not, it’s also colored my experience of new material that I want to read (especially by women), because I feel guilty not reading new books by men that are coming out to acclaim and predictions of brilliance and game-changing ideas before they even hit shelves. Then I feel guilty for feeling guilty? It’s such a strange set of emotions. I’m not really sure how to verbalize it, which means for the last three months I’ve been puzzling over how I engage with books rather than reading books, which is dire.”

While my experience is not precisely the same, the sense of frustration, of being diverted from what you really want to be doing, comes through very, very strongly. For me, it’s that constant pressure to be reading all the new stuff all the time (“best thing evah”) that grates. I think I’d rather be exploring the work of one or two writers at a time, reading their complete works so far. Yet, as a rule, I wouldn’t really write about that because I’ve been trained to strip emotions from my responses (that’s trained generally, in a social sense, not just in academe, though it gets in the way of critical responses too).

{there is probably a reason I rarely write about books I really enjoy. I am not sure I have a vocabulary for that any more}

I’m struck too by that line about “keen pressure to be educated in the genre, the genre lines, and the fandom’s history itself”. That’s pretty much what I grew up with, and it took me a long time to feel satisfied that I actually knew enough about sff to write a review that was anything more than a superficial plot synopsis with some critical comments attached. And I have a ten-year headstart on Renay, and was a late developer anyway. I wonder if, in part, that emphasis on being educated comes from an earlier generation of fans who didn’t have the chance to go into higher education and instead transformed themselves through self-improvement into auto-didacts. I’ve always felt that the traditional fandom I first encountered still found a certain cachet in this idea of self-education, and expertise and authority, especially authority, gathered through experience. I may be wrong, but I do wonder.

{I am not knocking this, not least because it is an idea that kept me going before I finally went to university, but I query the fetishising of it}

Here’s another thing that occurred to me while I was reading this column. It would be lovely to write criticism without feeling driven to define, taxonomises or contextualise the sff I’m reading. You know, to just accept that it is a science fiction or fantasy novel, and take it from there, rather than wandering through the halls of sff literature, looking for type specimens. Yes, sometimes one needs to refer back, but I suspect that it is no longer necessary to do it every single time.

And last in this group of blog posts that all arrived at about the same time, there is Nina Allan’s The Weight of History, which, as the title may suggest, is a direct response to Renay’s column. Reading it, Nina is prompted to examine her own history of reading sf, and to consider how male-dominated that was. I began by reading fantasy – there seemed to be more women visibly writing that, even in my childhood (and indeed more than I knew, given I’d assumed Andre Norton was a man) – so the disparity didn’t dawn on me until much later. Luckily, almost as soon as I began reading sf, I encountered Ursula Le Guin so the first element of the necessary corrective was in place almost before I realised I needed it.

Having said that, Nina raises a number of interesting points, not least of which is this: “[N]othing exists in a vacuum and history happened. We need to study history, to an extent, to come to a proper understanding of the present. Is it not particularly important that we make ourselves aware of the least savoury aspects of that history in order for it not to be perpetuated?” Here, Nina seems to me to be suggesting that we need to keep one eye on our history, not least to understand how we got to here, and to ensure that, going forward, we don’t repeat the mistakes made along the way.

At the same time, she argues persuasively for the idea of everyone having their own individual canon of essential writers. This is a thing I already believe in, in that I tend to work to a definition of sff consisting of “stuff Maureen thinks is sff and likes”. I have a very loose definition of sff but it works for me. The canon is an interesting but much abused concept. In truth, there is more than one canon. The one I’m mot familiar with, unsurprisingly, is the canon in education, which is in effect a rolling list of books used to teach courses. It has an element of “50 books every literary scholar ought to have read” about it, but in truth, the main qualification for the educational canon these days, at least in the UK, is “is there a relatively inexpensive edition in print?”

{no, really. Trust me}

But the canon as list is also part of that substantial tradition of self-improvement I’ve already touched on. I was given reading lists of novels in secondary school, and being the dutiful little thing I was, I worked my way through them in the belief that once I had read everything on the list I would be a well-rounded literary type.

{I still have some of those lists lurking in my files. They rise to the surface occasionally, and I note with a sigh that I still haven’t read all of them, nor am I likely to now}

One of Nina’s great abilities is to be constantly aware of what is coming up. I don’t know how she does it; I’ve long since given up the struggle and rely on others, like Nina, to alert me to interesting things coming up. David Hebblethwaite’s another one who is good at this, as is Aishwarya Subramanian. Arguably, I need to cultivate this skill for myself, but I enjoy getting the recommendations from others.

And possibly this is the clue I need as to where I should go to rekindle my own joy in reading and writing. If I am driven by anything, I’m driven by curiosity, and there is something very appealing about actively going in search of stuff I like rather than dutifully charting the inexorable rise of more guys writing bad cookie-cutter sff. Which is not to say that I am entirely abandoning looking at the bad stuff, but plain and simple reviewing is undoubtedly not the way forward here. If I am to continue indulging my strange fascination with post-apocalypse novels written by women seen as working outwith the defined genre, I probably need to do something comparative rather than writing about them one by one, often more in sorrow rather than anger.

{n.b. not all men write bad sf, but it is amazing how many bad sf novels by men I can think of. Consult the 2014 and 2015 Hugo shortlists if you require some examples. On the other hand, I can think of some stinkers by women too – equal opportunities also exist for bad writing. Edan Lepucki’s California is a sadly unironic example of this}

Towards the end of her post, Nina says: “I want to read books that feel as if they mattered to the writer”, and I realise now that I want to write about books that feel as if they mattered to the writer. Where that will lead me, I don’t know.

{there should be a nice tidy conclusion here. There isn’t}

5 thoughts on “{and then} – a writing life beyond reviews

  1. Jonathan McCalmont

    Excellent piece Maureen 🙂

    I will probably respond to this at my place but it seems to me that there is a neat, tidy conclusion here. You say that you want to read books that feel as though they mattered to the person writing them… Maybe people want the same thing from their criticism?

    It’s funny… Critics always open up and respond when someone writes about criticism. That matters to us, we have strong feelings about it and seek out those of others. Maybe we need to stop performing and start living.

  2. Pingback: The canon men don't see - Best Science Fiction Blog

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