Wrestling Goats in Albi

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I’m writing this from Toulouse railway station, where I’m awaiting the train to Albi. I caught the train to Paris yesterday evening, and then the overnight train down here to Toulouse. I’m here in France to spend a couple of weeks working on the final draft of my next novel, Goat Music. It has been a long time in the works, this …

Great images, non-objects and fog

Will Essays 2 Comments

It’s been foggy lately—the kind of fog that makes the edges of things blur into indistinctness; the kind of fog in which forms dissolve into the background, or loom again, imprecisely shaped, out of the greyness. I’ve been thinking a lot about fog lately, because I’ve been reading François Jullien’s book [amazon_link id=”0226415317″ target=”_blank” container=”” container_class=”” ]The Great Image Has …

Lyre on the East Midlands Book Award Shortlist

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Well, I’m tremendously excited to announce—at the end of a very long and very busy day at the States of Independence independent publishers’ fair here at De Montfort University—that my novel, [amazon_link id=”9380905076″ target=”_blank” container=”” container_class=”” ]The Descent of the Lyre[/amazon_link], is on the shortlist of the East Midlands Book Award. I’m absolutely delighted with this news. The novel is published by …

How the Revolution Began

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After reading Julian Baggini’s piece on burning the Encyclopædia Britannica in Aeon Magazine, I couldn’t resist reposting this story about book-burning that I wrote way back (as one of my series of Yijing-based stories), and that was published on Necessary Fiction back in 2010. The story was called ‘How the Revolution Began’, and featured not a blazing encyclopaedia, but instead whole …

A brief note on knowledge in the hands

Will Snippets 5 Comments

Some time ago, in a post on learning Chinese and the Bulgarian bagpipes, I wrote about the notion of concepts expressed in the hands, about the way in which learning a new skill—whether speaking Chinese or playing the bagpipes—goes beyond the acquisition of information, and instead involves the formation of particular kinds of bodily habit. Some time after writing that, I came …

Isaac’s Gift

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Just a quick email to say that I’ve got a new article online over on Aeon Magazine’s excellent website. The article is about the Tanimbar islands in Indonesia, adat ritual law, gift exchange, and talking lizards. You can find the link here. Whilst you are at it, it’s worth signing up for Aeon’s RSS feed: they publish a new (and excellent) article …

Begin afresh, afresh, afresh

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Well, it’s now more or less spring; and with the surging green buds etc., I thought I’d give TheMyriadThings a new look. After a few days of burrowing away behind the scenes, I’m just about ready to put the site back online. There are still a few rough edges (if you find any, then let me know), but I’ve simplified …