a very weird feeling
Nick Coleman name-checks “the SF awkward squad” of the 70s in his memoir of a life in music journalism: “Thompson was much cleverer than me, but neither of us seemed to mind. What seemed important was that we both liked Harlan Ellison, M John Harrison, Michael Moorcock, LeGuin and the rest of the SF awkward squad.” It is a weird feeling to be on a list like that. But it is less weird than Coleman’s experience. Music was his life: he woke up one morning deaf. How do you encompass that ? What do you do with yourself next ? In addition, The Train in the Night is full of acute observations like this: “‘Make new’ was not the same thing at all as ‘make novel’. Make new meant ‘make real again.'” Some of us should have that stamped on our bank books in case we forget it in the stumbling run to become popular.