What a year it has been. If we think back to just over a year ago… perhaps 14-15 months … what of major importance has happened or changed? What had we never heard of in early 2011, yet seen emerge as an important and even world-changing event or theme of the year since?
Here are a few items:
- The Japanese tsunami and nuclear catastrophe
- The Arab Spring, civil war in Libya, the Syrian civil war…
- The European sovereign debt meltdown
- The devastating tornado outbreaks in the US Midwest
- Record-breaking flooding and tropical cyclones in Australia
- Record-breaking Mississippi floods
- Wildfires and droughts in the US Southwest
- Hurricane Irene’s destruction in the US Northeast, especially Vermont
- The Occupy movement
- The consequences of the Citizen’s United decision (decided 1/21/2010)
- The bankruptcy of Eastman Kodak
- The hottest March in US history, all over the Lower 48
It has indeed been a busy year. I hope you’ll pardon some loss of momentum in my completion of Inter States, a novel of Vermont's and America's future I began posting in installments in Vermont Commons in 2009. Of course, I have been busy myself. My job, my wife’s work, and an active young family brim life in ways you all know. But Hurricane Irene hit very close to home – my wife’s workplace was abruptly an island (fortunately equipped with flood gates) on that landscape-changing day back at the end of August – so weeks of relief and recovery ensued.
At least I didn’t have to shovel much snow this past winter.
But how’s a body to work steadily and tranquilly on an alarming scenario of the future when a more alarming present keeps inserting itself into one’s consciousness? (This is what I have meant all along by “severity creep”.)
There’s a temptation to keep turning up the volume of future disruptions as one’s baseline keeps escalating. As I joked to a friend recently, pretty soon I am going to have to move into sci-fi hyperbole just to keep Inter States plausible. Aliens and stuff… NO! Just kidding.
Nonetheless, I shall persevere.
I encourage you to “follow” the WordPress blog, and “Like” the Facebook page. I plan to use all of these channels for Inter States communication, along with the @InterStates2040 Twitter account and, of course, Vermont Commons.
Meanwhile, the next installment should be ready later this month.
Thank you for your encouragement and patience, and please pass this around to people you think might be interested!