Here’s a fascinating demonstration of just how stupid and backwards the political gatekeepers in fiction really are.
This week author Dan Simmons wrote a post about Greta the Climate Scold, and because his opinion went against left wing orthodoxy, a bunch of virtue signalling morons threw a fit.
For those of you not familiar with Dan Simmons, I’ve said this before here, I think he is one of the most talented writers alive. My first exposure to him was Hyperion. I was in college, and dating Bridget. She was already a fan, couldn’t believe I hadn’t read it, and loaned me Hyperion and Fall of Hyperion. A week later I got Endymion and Rise of Endymion out of the library. They are amazing, big imagination, huge universe, crazy (multi)world building, stories. They are considered classic works of sci-fi for a reason.
(I learned a lot about how to write big casts of interesting characters each doing their own thing while that was somehow connected to everybody else from Dan Simmons. Kassad and Ashok would probably get along really well)
Personally, I like Olympos and Illium even better. They have the most batshit crazy plot synopsis I’ve ever heard of. It’s the battle of Troy on Mars, with space gods, and post-apocalyptic Earth has dinosaurs and Jews menaced by killer Muslim robot pods and a giant brain thing, and monster characters from Shakespeare run a space station, as narrated by a reborn history teacher, and a robot from Jupiter who really loves to quote Proust… and Dan Simmons MAKES THIS ALL WORK.
Also, The Terror is just fantastic. It’s this moody, historical piece, where he makes being trapped in ice the most menacing thing ever, and then it gets really really weird. Then he’s got classics like Song of Kali, which is straight up scary ass horror, or Carrion Comfort (which Stephen King called one of the best three novels of the century).
So basically, Dan Simmons is really freaking good at his job. You might even say by the harshest standards of the literary snoots, he’s a *real* writer. They even used to give him Hugos back when those meant something.
Well, he used to be a *real* writer, but then Dan Simmons made the unpardonable sin of having public opinions that went against the mandatory left wing orthodoxy of publishing. After 9-11 he wrote a short story where a time traveler from the future comes to our time to warn us about an Islamic Caliphate… and the woke scolds declared that to be super bad islamophobia and totally unrealistic right wing hatemongery (even though it was basically ISIS’ mission statement a few years later)
Then this week, Dan Simmons had the audacity to have an opinion that was different that all good thinking, proper, authors should…. and thus he must be destroyed. What did he do this time? Unfortunately, like most reasonable adults, Dan Simmons was not impressed by a teenager throwing a rather impassioned tantrum about how if we don’t give government’s absolute control over everything right now, we’re all gonna die. Oh yeah, and we all stole her childhood.
Now, personally, my childhood was spent milking cows, so it wasn’t all that awesome to begin with, and we lived down the road from a SAC base that had dozens of Soviet nukes aimed at it for the inevitable upcoming End Of The World As We Know It and we still managed to be happy and hopeful… So I’m gonna go out on a limb and say Greta’s parents are really really shitty at their job. And it’s really cruel to fuck over your kids like that, just so the wokescolds (who never actually change their lifestyles) can feel superior to you for not changing your lifestyles, per the commandments of their unimpeachable climate gods.
Oh yeah, and it’s the ultimate Motte and Bailey play, because they can put an uneducated teenager with no scientific creds at all in front of one of the biggest government bodies in the world to demand socialism now or else, and when you go LOL WUT they switch to We Just Want A Clean Environment Why Do You Hate Children. It’s total bullshit.
But that’s just my opinion. Dan Simmon’s opinion was actually far more diplomatic.
Anyways, as soon as this author said his badthink opinion, hordes of virtue signalling morons piled on to talk about what a horrible child hating monster this former elementary school teacher must be. There was lots of rage, and screaming, and lamenting how sad it was that he used to be talented, before he descended into hateful hatemongery, so on and so forth. Basically, the usual.
Of course after that, Fandom’s Prolapsed Anus (the shittiest gossip website ever, File 770) simply had to report on it. China Mike can never resist any opportunity to screw over an author’s career when given the chance. Their headline might as well have been AUTHOR GUILTY OF WRONGTHINK! GET YOUR FRESH OUTRAGE HERE.
Don’t worry. It’s an archive link so you don’t get File 770 cooties.
I’ve talked about File 770 before, and how China Mike Glyer is a wretched scumbag vulture made of pond slime and syphilis, but this post isn’t about him being a parasitic piece of shit who rejoices in sabotaging the reputation of any authors who get out of line. It’s about how bad these people are at it.
So what was the result of all these has-beens, never-weres, and virtue signalling assholes dog piling this author for having an incorrect opinion?
Yep. A book that came out THIRTY YEARS AGO shot to number one.
This is good, because it’s a really good series,and the more new people who get to read it, the better. But more importantly it shows just how powerless the wokescolds are.
In ye olde tymes most authors still believed that the monolithic, left-wing, mean girls table of publishing and fandom could actually harm their livelihood. The bullies were very much “Hey, nice career you’ve got there, be a real shame if something bad were to happen to it.” And authors fell in line.
So conservative, libertarian, or hell, anybody to the right of Mao basically had to keep their mouths shut because they were scared of getting articles written about they by wretched shitheels like China Mike, Cameldung Frapington, or Frau Butthurt, proclaiming Author X is a Bad Person And Should Be Shunned. Then the authors would see the internet lynch mob of wokescolds sharing those articles getting out their torches and pitchforks, get scared, and then debase themselves by apologizing even though they’d done nothing wrong.
Thankfully those days are coming to an end. Rather than being a career threatening bludgeon like they used to be, the wokescolds are so annoying and obnoxious that fans actually go out of their way to thwart them. If a wokescold starts screaming than an author is guilty of badthink, the fans take that as a sign it is probably pretty good, and go check it out.
The only places these people still have power is where people grant it to them, meaning they are also members of the Church of Unrelenting Bossiness and need to ritually flog themselves to remove theirs sins, or they are the poor authors who are stuck at publishing houses where their editors are members of the church.
As for the rest of us, we can now safely laugh at these idiots, and go on writing whatever we feel like.
Seriously though, check out Ilium and Olympos. They’re nuts. Dan Simmons is a bad ass.
Edited to add: If you’re a fan of WrongThink and great fiction, here’s a link to the paperback -Jack