HAPPY 2017. THE WINTER HAS COME. 2016 IN RECAP, AND MORE.
We're about to enter the four-year freeze I thought I have successfully escaped when I left Russia. I was mistaken. It seems the ugly head of the white male fantasy has reared itself once more, in all its blond balding glory, to remind us all that we're not infallible to this little evolutional leftover from the cave times: fear. We're terrified of change, and so we have conveniently slipped into the comfort of the fantasy that no longer exists. I have witnessed it (and wrote about it in Irkadura and in TUBE) in Russia when those most oppressed by the Soviet regime where the ones who took to the streets under the flapping red Soviet flags demanding Stalin come back (the beloved omnipotent father figure) and fix all their woes. Who were those people marching the streets? Retired women who bore the brunt of socialism on their bones, disillusioned war veterans who have lost their life possessions after Perestroika, and some young people who haven't had the chance to form their own opinions and believed what their parents believed before them: that there is a bright communist future out there, and one chosen man will bring to them if only they bend their knees and their heads hard enough to his mighty power.
Welcome to Trumplandia. The flavor of what America is facing in 2017 and beyond is decidedly different from what I grew up with, but it smacks of the same fascist tendencies, and so we got what George R. R. Martin has warned us of years before: The winter has come. The history repeats itself. You can say we're taking a step back, but once that bucket of ice-cold water douses us, we'll leap two steps forward. Or so is my hope. And that is what no regime can take away from us—hope. And it's hope that becomes reality when artists make it real with their art, and we all can see that it's possible.
SO WRITE THE FUCK OUT OF YOUR HOPES IN 2017.
I certainly will. I will write about the future I see and the world I want to live in. I will keep publishing my books and screaming about them from every roof (regardless of what anyone might tell me, what to write, what not to write, how to make my art, etc.). And I will keep holding your hand when you feel that life is so bleak, you can't possibly continue creating, continue moving forward. Yes you can. Together we will win.
Well then, on this cheery note, here is what's happened for me in 2016: