Monday, October 23, 2017 Text is available under the CC BY-SA 3.0 licence.

China Mieville


Hugo, Arthur C Clarke and Locus award-winning English fantastic fiction writer.
China Mieville
Andrejís mind, like any sane humanís Ö was a constantly convulsing dialectical unity of consciousness and subconsciousness, the battening down and channelling of dreams and desires, the recurring re-creation of the subliminal by the contradictory, the rational-capricious ego. And vice versa. The interaction of levels of consciousness into an unstable and permanently self-renewing whole.
Mieville quotes
The thing about good pulp is that you trust the reader and you know that the mind is a machine to process metaphors so of course all those connections will be there. But you've also granted the fantastic its own dynamic and allowed that awe. There's no contradiction. So I want to have monsters as a metaphor but I also want monsters because monsters are cool. There's no contradiction.
Mieville
This was the most difficult, the most extraordinary transition. Her body had been a source of shame and disgust; to engage in activities with no purpose at all except to revel in their sheer physicality had first nauseated, then terrified, and finally liberated her.




Mieville China quotes
Socialism and SF are the two most fundamental influences in my life.
Mieville China
Iím not waiting to die, I donít believe Iíll die, I am waiting for something else.
To arrive. To understand. To be at my destination.
China Mieville quotes
We have watched mutant creatures crawl from sewers into cold flat starlight and whisper shyly to each other, drawing maps and messages in faecal mud.
I have sat with the wind at my side and seen cruel things, wicked things.
My scars and bonestubs itch. I am forgetting the weight, the sweep, the motion of wings. If I were not garuda I would pray. But I will not obeise myself before arrogant spirits.
China Mieville
Now what are we looking at right here? Whatís bang in the middle? Some people think thatís mathematics there. Fine. But if maths is the study that best allows you to think your way to the centre, whatíre the forces youíre investigating? Maths is totally abstract, at one level, square roots of minus one and the like, but the world is nothing if not rigorously mathematical. So this is a way of looking at the world which unifies all the forces: mental, social, physical.
Mieville China quotes
ďMy dad hates umbrellas,Ē said Deeba, swinging her own. ďWhen it rains he always says the same thing. ĎI do not believe the presence of moisture in the air is sufficient reason to overturn societyís usual sensible taboo against wielding spiked clubs at eye level.íĒ
Mieville
As far as I'm concerned, some of the best literature of the last hundred years has come out of the genre tradition and of course the best of it challenges expectations just as the best of literary fiction challenges those expectations. But it's not that genre fiction is any more a constraint than mimetic fiction. So I see myself very much as a genre writer. I love the fantastic genres. I see what I'm doing as a development of them but very much a part of them. I never feel that I'm leaving them behind. I try and be as experimental and avant-garde and stretching as I can be but I don't see that as turning my back on the genre at all. Genre has always been able to encompass that.
Mieville China
For every action, thereís an infinity of outcomes. Countless trillions are possible, many milliards are likely, millions might be considered probable, several occur as possibilities to us as observersóand one comes true.
China Mieville
Thereís simultaneously something rigorous and something playful in genre. Itís about the positing of something impossibleówhether not-yet-possible or never-possibleóand then taking that impossibility and granting it its own terms and systematicity. Itís carnivalesque in its impossibility and overturning of reality, but itís rationalist in that it pretends it is real. And itís that second element which I think those who dip their toes in the SF pond so often forget. They think sf is ďaboutĒ analogies, and metaphors, and so on. I refute thatóI think that those are inevitable components, but itís the surrendering to the impossible, the weird, that characterizes genre. Those flirting with SF donít surrender to it; they distance themselves from it, and have a neon sub-text saying, ďItís okay, this isnít really about spaceships or aliens, itís about real life,Ē not understanding that it can be both, and would do the latter better if it was serious about the former.




China Mieville quotes
She was intelligent enough to realize that her excitement was childish, but not mature enough to care.
China Mieville
She felt so alien, bowed under culture shock as crippling as migraine.
Mieville quotes
Although we revolutionary socialists are always accused of being Utopian, nothing strikes me as more Utopian than the reformist belief that with a bit of tinkering and some good faith, we can systematically improve the world. You have to ask how many decades of broken promises and failed schemes it will take to disprove that hope. Marxism isnít about saying youíll get a perfect world: itís about saying we can get a better world than this one, and itís hard to imagine, no matter how many mistakes we make, that it could be much worse than the mass starvation, war, oppression, and exploitation we have now. In a world where 30,000 to 40,000 children die of malnutrition daily while grain ships are designed to dump food into the sea if the price dips too low, itís worth the risk.
Mieville China
It felt like being a child again, though it was not. Being a child is like nothing. It's only being. Later, when we think about it, we make it into youth.
Mieville China quotes
Tearfly looked at Bellis curiously, bewildered by her ignorance. She did not care. What was important to her was where she was fleeing from, not where she was, or where she was going.
China Mieville
But it's a prize that... if you're into science-fiction and fantasy you grow up reading books with "Hugo [Award-winner]" on the cover. And this is very, very moving, to be in that position oneself. It's an odd situation [too], because, as you say, it was a tie, which is very rare with the Hugo, which has happened, like three times over sixty years, or something. But I prefer to think of it as a quantum Hugo and that Paolo Bacigalupi and I oscilate between between Hugo particle and wave form, this year. So it's properly science-fictional.
China Mieville quotes
Lin realized that she was living in an unsustainable realm. It combined sanctimony, decadence, insecurity and snobbery in a weird, neurotic brew. It was parasitic.
China Mieville
To take the choice of another Ö to forget their concrete reality, to abstract them, to forget that you are a node in a matrix, that actions have consequences. We must not take the choice of another being. What is community but a means to Ö for all we individuals to have Ö our choices.
Mieville China
We say what happens now. Weíre taking control. Weíre turning around; weíre heading home. Your orders to proceed...are in-fucking-validated.


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