- Twitter changes what it means to use the block function. Another take. …And less than a day after making this change, Twitter has reverted the block function back to what it was previously. This is good news.
- Polenth on Self-Publishing and Gratuitous Diversity
- The Main Character in Their Own Lives: Does Diversity Make YA SF/F Better?
- Signal boosting: Bogi Takács On Expanded Horizons
- Nicole Stark’s Survey of Harassment Policies at Fan Conventions Color me wholly unsurprised.
- Some great content recently from Love in the Margins–first, a round table on Multicultural Romance and then, in the comments on this links post a good discussion on issues raised both in the round table and by some of the articles linked, specifically HQN’s decision to not publish a paper edition of Jeannie Lin’s The Jade Temptress due to poor sales of the first volume.
- On the criminalization of young black and brown boys.
- Why I Believe Jameis Winston’s Accuser
- Falling Without Getting Hurt: Adventures in Disability
- A video game with nothing to see
- Whitewashed TV isn’t just racist. It’s boring!
- Science Reporter Emily Graslie Reads Her Mail — And It’s Not So Nice
- A Review of Memory, or Why Bujold is Secretly Genre-Bending
- Like Totally Random Liz has interesting things to say about snark and smarm and book reviews.
- A really really lovely “Susan problem” Narnia fic.
- The Coolest Thing About Online Dating Sites
- In Defense of the Middle-Aged Music Fan
- Almost Human Made Me Swoon Definitely a show that cares about the ladies, amirite?
- Myke Cole on The Other Brother
- Letters of Note: She was the music heard faintly at the edge of sound Raymond Chandler’s letter to a a friend shortly after his wife, Cissy, passed away.
- How to properly issue and respond to a DMCA takedown notice (SFWA edition) As one does.
- And finally, this is an absolutely wonderful poem by Liz Bourke: Manteia, Katabasis
- Time to pick a side. N.K. Jemisin reflects upon the fallout from her Continuum GOH speech.
This is about SFF, and SFWA, and what these near-constant cycles of offense-and-outrage-and-offense-again really mean. If I may be melodramatic, all this anger and discussion reflects a struggle for the soul of the organization, which is in turn reflective of a greater struggle for the soul of the genre, and that overall struggle taking place globally.
- #SolidarityIsForWhiteWomen: women of color’s issue with digital feminism and Q&A With #SolidarityIsForWhiteWomen Creator Mikki Kendall
- Yes, this IS ABOUT RACE
- Now Collecting: Hugo Schwyzer Apologists
- Safer spaces within feminism
- Bleacher Report’s Bustle: Bryan Goldberg’s new website for women. Yes, I am totally aware of the irony of linking to this article after linking to a piece on Bustle. I contain multitudes.
- How the word ‘troll’ has been redefined by the powerful
Their responses to what they call “trolling” often seem less about combating abuse than reasserting their role as gatekeeper, to restore to themselves the right to decide who gets to speak in public and who doesn’t. It is what US academic Susan Herbst calls “the strategic use of civility”.
- Do Not Link allows you to ethically criticize bad content
- Women to Read: New Voices This is a wonderful list.
- Disability in Science Fiction: Cover Talk (excerpt from introduction)
- Disability Horror in “My Sweet Audrina” I thought this was interesting, I’m not sure I agree with everything in it. It’s also been 25 years since I read the book, too. There’s also this amazing essay from Ann Patty, the editor at Pocket who acquired Flowers in the Attic.
- Shit Book Snobs Say: Translations
- Cultural capital in space and print
- Dorothy L. Sayers, Gaudy Night
A partnership of equals, an implicit promise that she should never subsume herself in him, an unending right to a life of the mind. It’s far more touching than a single phrase in a dead language has any right to be.
- Generation X gets really old: How do slackers have a midlife crisis?
- Stop Pretending That Poor Skills are Something You Invented, Hipsters Not everything in this article is something I’m familiar with but enough of it is that it really resonates.
- Stefan Raets on James Gunn’s Transcendental.
I’m guessing she’ll be one of, if not the only female character in the novel, maybe like the Wife of Bath in the Canterbury Tales. Or Smurfette, of course.
- “In the Bugger Tunnels of Planet Eros: Gay Sex and Death in the Science Fiction of Orson Scott Card,” by Kate Bonin
- Orson Scott Card Worries About Obama Turning “Urban Gangs” Into His Personal Police Force The mainstream media is so adorably behind the curve when it comes to OSC.
- Authors, Bloggers, and Plagiarism…Oh My! My reaction: a listless whatever.
- Racial Profiling Lives On
- First bone tools suggest Neanderthals taught us skills
- Sarah Rees Brennan on why her characters look the way they do
- I Hate Strong Female Characters
- When Social Media CEOs Abet Stalking
- When brands fire shots on Twitter, things can get sassy
- Own Heinlein’s Bed! Complete with built-in tissue dispenser! Which I am pretending are ONLY FOR SNEEZING.
Have a giraffe chaser:
- Being good can be a shortcut. There is no shortcut to being good.
- Fat: Regency Romance
- Pop Culture Advisory: Game of Thrones (nothing self-interested in this link, oh no).
- McDonald’s worker sues: Don’t pay by debit card Just like getting paid in company scrip! Awesome!
- Eve Thomas and #OneVoice
- Me, On The Screen: Race in Animal Crossing
- Are You Smart Enough to be a US Citizen? I mixed up two of the justices and totally screwed up the civic text section–I mixed up the Preamble to the Constitution, the Declaration of Independence, and the Gettysburg Address. Since I’ve never actually taken a citizenship test, do they actually score them like that? Probationary, pass, with distinction?
- A Man’s Take on “Arranged” Marriage
- Uncovering Clues in Frida Kahlo’s Private Wardrobe
- I adore this series of pictures (and accompanying text) so much: Mercantile 1925, Dallas TX
- 28 Ways You Identify With Dorothy From “The Golden Girls” Dorothy is the best Golden Girl.
- Street Teams and Astroturfing or Reader Word of Mouth? If you want me to promote your book, you need to pay me to do so. This isn’t the first time I’ve written about the ethical problems with this sort of promotional activity.
- I Can’t Handle These Feels
- A Rundown of What’s Going on with Penny Arcade Now Trigger warnings for transphobia, among other things.
- The Saga of Scott Adams’s Scrotum
- Kate Elliott on Civility in SF
- Late to the Fight “So to all those who have been rallying against this for years, decades, I’m sorry. I didn’t know the fight was going on. By not seeing it, I helped perpetuate it with lazy language and blind acceptance of the paradigm. I didn’t see that this was my fight, also. I was wrong.”
- Open Letter to SFWA Fascinating perspective from a librarian.
- The enduring influence of “academic” racism
- The Silent Majority: Fear of Sexism is a Misogynist’s Best Friend
- I’ll Bet You Think This Post Is About You
- So, Where Are the Outstanding Women in X?
- Dealing With It (also) Some of this is similar to my experience, too. After a while, you give up on complaining about being harassed because no one will do anything to help you. When I was in junior high, my classmates used to harass me in various small, subtle ways until I lost my temper and started lashing out physically (usually by throwing things). It was never their fault for driving me to that point–it was always my fault for breaking, for “giving them the satisfaction”. Looking back, I can see how it affected a lot of the decisions I made as a teenager. Some of those decisions have affected my entire life.
- What is Rape Culture? (also)
- The Bad Touch
- I Don’t Know Where to Put My Feet Trigger warnings for descriptions of physical abuse.
- Kari Sperring on Civility and Abuse–she makes some excellent points here and this is definitely something for me to keep in mind.
Finally, this sums up my feelings about people who try so hard to build community only to have it thrown back in their faces: Sad Trombone.
Also! Late breaking! Bryan Thomas Schmidt is still telling people they’re doing it wrong! (screencap) I am so glad that he is around to tell us how to do things! Man. I mean, just MAN. I love how he claims that the people telling him that he’s upholding the status quo and arguing in bad faith (as proven by his actions and his words) are “uninformed assumers with no credibility”. I think that means he doesn’t know who we are?
Bryan Thomas Schmidt: you do not get to set the terms of engagement. You do not get to tell people who have been told, in various ways throughout their lives, that they need to be nice and polite if they want you–or anyone else–to listen to them.
You think you are an authority. You are not. Authority is earned, not assumed. You haven’t earned it. The difference between us? I know I’m not an authority. I’m just an opinionated woman with a website and a low tolerance for bullshit. And I’m okay with that.
Why are you so interested in dictating terms of engagement? What do you get from it? How does it hurt you, personally, if people talk about how racism and sexism in our community make them angry? It doesn’t. It just makes you uncomfortable–and, for whatever reason, you value your comfort over justice. And I find that to be appalling.
So. This happened (note: not enough trigger warnings in the world for that link: racism and sexism and for the love of all you hold dear, don’t go into the comments). In response to N.K. Jemisin’s amazing GOH speech at Continuum where she alluded to Theodore Beale’s failed candidacy for president of SFWA.
And then Beale then deliberately used @SFWAauthors to disseminate it (there’s a process by which members of SFWA can use this Twitter account for their blog posts)–presumably to further damage the organization’s reputation:
This is in direct violation of SFWA policy:
Not every blog post is appropriate for @sfwaauthors. If a post is not about writing, or about fiction or publishing, do not mark it for inclusion in the @sfwaauthors twitter feed. Repeated violations of this policy will be grounds for removal from the feed. SFWA reserves the right to determine what posts are appropriate.
Marking blog posts for inclusion that include threats or personal attacks or obvious trolling will also be grounds for removal.
Amal El-Mohtar goes on to call for Theodore Beale (aka Vox Day) to be expelled from SFWA based on the organization’s current set of by-laws.
I can’t say I disagree at all: he has shown repeatedly that he is not a good faith member of the organization and with this violation of policy I do not believe SFWA has any obligation to continue to allow him to be a member.
I do wish more people had felt inclined to speak up when he attacked E. Catherine Tobler a couple of weeks ago instead of collectively deciding to ignore him in the hopes that he’d go away (with a few exceptions). I do understand that at that point he hadn’t done anything to warrant expulsion from SFWA–and as I was one of those keeping silent, I’m upset with myself here as well. Private support is one thing, speaking up publicly is another.
This doesn’t work with schoolyard bullies and it doesn’t work with racist misogynist fuckmuppets like Theodore Beale.
Here’s some other people’s thoughts on the matter:
- Wishing Never Changed a Damn Thing
- Personal, Professional, Official? Standards of Professionalism in SFWA
- A glimpse at the racism lurking around science fiction
- Racist Takes Dump in SFWA Twitter Stream: News at 11
- SFWA Woes
- Reconciliation within the SFF genre, one writer at a time
- Putting my money where my mouth is: Endorsing a call to expel Theodore Beale from SFWA
- Are You Shocked?
Tangental, but still important: We Have Always Been Fighting this Fight (related). In other words: this kind of shit is endemic SFF fandom and that leads directly to Foz Meadows weighing in with Reconciliation: A Response To Theodore Beale:
As members of the SFF community, there is only one acceptable response to Beale, and that is to shun him utterly; to excise him from our genre like the cancer that he is, from convention to blog to column, and to enforce that ban as thoroughly and determinedly as we are able.
Because if we don’t, our Reconciliation will mean nothing.
We will mean nothing.
This started with SFWA but it's obviously a much huger issue. It's a huge reaction against decades of entrenched inequalities. (1/?)
— Beth Wodzinski (@bethwodzinski) June 14, 2013
SFWA events are a magnifying glass, a focal point, for huge issues. So a lot of shit rolls toward SFWA, not all of which it earned. (2/?)
— Beth Wodzinski (@bethwodzinski) June 14, 2013
This is an incredible opportunity for SFWA to step up and change the world, to fight for inclusion and diversity and humanity. (3/?)
— Beth Wodzinski (@bethwodzinski) June 14, 2013
All eyes are on SFWA. Step into a leadership role. Don't just do disaster response, make the world better. This can be an enormous win.
— Beth Wodzinski (@bethwodzinski) June 14, 2013
If you want to take a stand against Beale’s racism, I can think of nothing better than to make a donation to either the Carl Brandon Society or Con-Or-Bust–or both. Or by buying books by writers of color, by women writers, by writers with disabilities, by QUILTBAG writers. Do your best to be an ally. Educate yourself. Apologize when you fuck up. Do what you can to make this genre–no, this community a welcoming and more diverse place. It–and you–will be better for it. I guarantee it.
And if you are a SFWA member and if you haven’t done so already, I urge you to write to the SFWA Board and to your Regional Director about this issue.
(And fans of weekly linkspam, never fear: it’ll be going up later this afternoon!)
Linkspam is not going to reach the heights of excitement last week did, but there’s still some fantastic things nonetheless!
- John Green on some of the reasons why The Fault in Our Stars has been so successful. (via) Lots of good information here–and a lot of the success of the book rests with his editor and publicist.
- Little Miss Crabby Pants Resurrects Historical Romance
- Hits with knits Yarn bombing!
- Bargain (Ten Thousand Dollars) Wonderful work of art and really thought-provoking commentary.
- “How do I minimize embarrassment when telling a partner that I have a body and a past?” This is great advice. And applicable to things other than the letter writer’s problem, too.
- What it’s like to watch Game of Thrones with people who haven’t read the books. It’s the GIF that makes the post.
- Pablo Neruda and the Singularity of the Common Experience
- Kristin Cashore on why she has no social media presence. I love that she’s so clear about how social media affects her process and if I had to choose between books from her or talking to her on Twitter, I’d rather the book.
- 10 episodes that take you inside the weird world of The Kids In The Hall The Kids in the Hall: best sketch comedy show ever or absolute best sketch comedy show ever?
- 22 Maps That Show The Deepest Linguistic Conflicts In America And yet. Still no explanation as to why I say “bagel” totally different than anyone else I have ever met. Sigh.
- This is Kristin Beck.
- ROGER EBERT: On kindness Get your tissues handy…
- 25 Things You Should Know About Young Adult Fiction
- Silence Is a Woman (via)
- Dear romance readers…
- Why Leaving a Half-Read Book is So HardBees
- Bookworm Resurgent My friend Wendell has a new blog!
- Vegemite: It’s a Matter of Taste
- 7 Reasons Child Stars Go Crazy (An Insider’s Perspective)
- Why Enjoying Solitude Helps Me Meet Conventions Full of People
- Review of The Summer Prince by Alaya Dawn Johnson “The Summer Prince is the best book I’ve ever read, and one which whose language, themes and characters will continue to speak to me for the rest of my life.”
And in honor of the last week and a half of my life…
- Sexism on the floor of BEA
- Anita Sarkeesian And The Trouble With Magic Bullets
- If Comedy Has No Lady Problem, Why Am I Getting So Many Rape Threats? Major, major, major trigger warnings on this–there are screenshots of graphic tweets at the bottom.
- William Lloyd Garrison on privilege-checking
- We get to. You don’t.
- Fuck the High Road: The Upside of Sinking to Their Level
- An Open Letter to the SFF Community
- A Brief Survey of the Accomplishments of Chappie Writers and Editors
- Discrimination Policy: Where’s SFWA’s?
- Future of the Bulletin
I pulled, to no avail. “You try?”She pulled it out, easily.”You’re-“”They wouldn’t let me.” She shoved the sword back into the stone.
— Micro SF/F Fiction (@MicroSFF) June 6, 2013