Categories
Reads

OKRs for Writers (And Creatives)

I’ve been working on my current manuscript for months now. It’s coming along in stop and go motion like learning to drive stick for the first time. Sometimes, everything clicks and aligns, and I can get some movement, if not distance, for a very urgent meeting. Other times, I stall because life obstacles keep getting in the way. The impulsive thing to do is to slam on the breaks when you think you’re going to crash.

The items on the list of why I don’t have time to write for myself is long. I could list them all, but a modified Stoic maxim comes to mind. “Waste no more time arguing about what a good writer should be; just be one.”

Categories
Alternate History Historical Fiction

Legally White: A 1908 Court Case Reversal

In January 1908, a trial in Minnesota decided whether John Svan, an outspoken activist and socialist from Finland, could become a naturalized United States citizen or not. At the time, citizenship was legally defined only for “Whites” and “Blacks.”

A district prosecutor maintained that Finnish immigrants were Mongol, or “Yellow,” and thus not eligible for citizenship due to the Chinese Exclusion Act.

Svan eventually won his court case, legally proving that Finnish people were White.

Here’s my take on what would have happened if John Svan had lost his court case to become “legally White”—only adding to the conversation of where the concept of “supremacy” is coming from if “whiteness” is purely a construct.

Categories
Reads

Tend To Your Night Garden

There’s a story about death and rebirth you probably haven’t heard.

It comes from a rarely-remembered Greek myth about a soldier named Auxentius and the trickster goddess Eris, who, after instigating the Trojan War, was upset that nobody remembered to honor her once it was over.

Categories
Rants

The Millennial Joads

While my wife, Belinda, and I were packing our car to go to Minnesota and escape the coronavirus outbreak in New York, she turned to me and asked, “Aren’t you thinking what’s it going to be like when we get there?”

Categories
Rants

Kill, F*ck, or Marry: A Buttigieg or a Dilettante?

A recruiter called me a dilettante at 8 a.m. on a Monday after I had already been up for two hours working on a time-sensitive deliverable for a client before I had to shower and head into the city for my full-time job.