Bonus blog post! Because why not. May as well strike while the iron’s hot.
After I got a surprising amount of traffic from rationalists on Reddit and HPMoR, pointing out that my story is quite rationalist, I looked into it a bit. I’ve never really dug into any major -isms, but I have coincidentally landed in a few -ism camps over the years. And… yeah. I can see that, with this one.
“But Stefan,” you say, after breaking into my house and holding me at gunpoint, “There’s so much unexplainable magic in your story, with all the reality warping going on and the mysterious origin of how the City got started in the first place. There’s no deduction going on to determine the nature of things. How is this rational?”
“I think the important distinction is that while there’s a lot we don’t know yet about the City of Angles, it is somewhere in there to know and be known,” I reply, escaping from my bonds and wrestling for the gun with you in a dramatic action sequence. “There is an explanation for everything in the series. Whether or not the characters learn it, I know it, and I’m trying to keep true to the mechanics of how these things work.”
Will there ultimately be a vast and unknowable mystery at the end? Very likely. I like to believe that once you dig past a layer of secrets, you find… another layer of secrets. It’s turtles all the way down, and you may never reach the core. Humanity may never reach the core in its lifetime, before burning out as a species.
But that doesn’t mean you shouldn’t dig, because each layer you break through improves you and improves humanity as a whole. Even if you never reach the core, the deeper one goes in understanding the universe, the better. What’s at the core? Is it a mathematical equation? Is it God? Is it nothing? We may find out, we may never find out, but that doesn’t negate the quest itself. Learn everything. Understand everything.
I think this holds true in all of my stories. There’s a reason for everything, and the journey of discovery is a path for discovery of one’s self as well as discovery of the world around you. Hopefully my writing spurs on your own thinking. And if not, hey, there’s some wacky jokes and puns to enjoy along the way.