futurist writing and academic research are both forms of exploration

back in july, i had a good convo with my friend jonathan. i’ve been increasingly bad at keeping up with my post stubs/snippets so somehow this one didn’t get written about until just now. #shrug

anywho, we were catching up and two things we were working on had been discussed: i was working on the futurist writing collective a friend and i were working on, alternative futures. he was, as always, working on some academic research. over the course of our conversation, it occurred to me that what both of us were doing was exploration.

at the time, grant and i had just come to the conclusion that what we were really doing with our short pieces was worldbuilding. although we intended to write stories that grappled with real issues, our word limit really only allowed us to sketch out some of the early details of worlds in which we could eventually deal with issues over time.

but jonathan’s work was also exploration. by reading and thinking, he and folks like him, think of research questions and then find funding to pursue the answers to those questions.

what i know, though, is that many research projects don’t result in anything useful. lots of money is spent that doesn’t create any meaningful contribution to society. during this conversation, it started to occur to me that the futurist writer can do just as much exploration as can the scientist but the impacts and resource investment for the writer is lower.

so, given that, now i’m wondering… why aren’t we investing more in writing as exploration as opposed to massive science projects?


words / writing / post-processing
272w / 11min / 2min