evennerdierthanthou asked: your blog makes me so angry and that is a wonderful thing. cheers from Indiana
c-offee-house asked: Hey. I read your comment on the post saying "if you can afford an iPhone or an iPad you shouldn't be on welfare... etc". I really support what you said, and the way you expressed your opinion was really impressive. I know I don't know anything about you, but you would be a really good writer for perhaps a magazine or a journalist :)
Thank you! I’m not a journalist in the traditional sense, but I do sometimes write for The Huffington Post, as well as for various other blogs besides my own. I’m also an author :)
suddenly paralysed because I decided to do three things on the computer at once and was so overwhelmed by the process of trying to decide which one to do first that I completely forgot all three things and now I’m on tumblr again
Rebageling for the day crew
The Kickstarter just launched, and we need your support to make this happen! Featuring a diverse range of professional, award-winning artists, writers, and scholars of speculative fiction, Steampunk World will collect 18 stories about steampunk settings outside of Victorian England, all with protagonists of color.
This anthology will be edited by Sarah Hans and published by Alliteration Press. Cover art provided by James Ng. Check out below for the bios of the amazing authors involved!
New Zealand born fantasy writer and podcaster Philippa (Pip) Ballantine is the author of the Books of the Order and the Shifted World series. She is also the co-author with her husband Tee Morris of the Locus best selling, Ministry of Peculiar Occurrences novels, which have all appeared in the top 10 science fiction titles of the Goodreads Awards for the year they were published. Her other awards include an Airship, two Parsecs, the Steampunk Chronicle Reader’s Choice, and a Sir Julius Vogel. She currently resides in Manassas, Virginia with her husband, daughter, and a furry clowder of cats.
Alex Bledsoe grew up in west Tennessee an hour north of Graceland (home of Elvis) and twenty minutes from Nutbush (birthplace of Tina Turner). He’s been a reporter, editor, photographer and door-to-door vacuum cleaner salesman. He now lives in a Wisconsin town famous for trolls, writes before six in the morning and tries to teach his three kids to act like they’ve been to town before. He is the author of the Eddie LaCrosse series (most recently He Drank, and Saw the Spider), the Tufa novels (Wisp of a Thing and The Hum and the Shiver) and the Firefly Witch ebooks.
Emily Cataneo is a dark fantasy and horror writer based in Boston, Mass. Her short fiction is forthcoming from the Chiral Mad 2 anthology and from the online magazine Kaleidotrope. She is a 2013 graduate of the Odyssey Writing Workshop and a member of the online Codex Writers Group. Her stories usually involve winter, bones, female friendships, the Victorian occult, anxious characters, and the darkly beautiful. When she’s not writing fiction, she’s a freelance journalist for the paper of record in the Greater Boston area.
S. J. Chambers is the Hugo and World Fantasy nominated co-author of the best-sellingThe Steampunk Bible and The Steampunk Bible 2014 Calendar (Abrams Image). Her fiction has appeared in a variety of venues, including Mungbeing magazine (where her story “Of Parallel and Parcel” was nominated for a Pushcart prize), New Myths, Yankee Pot Roast, as well as in anthologies like the World Fantasy nominated Thackery T. Lambshead’s Cabinet Of Curiosities (HarperCollins), Zombies: Shambling Through The Ages (Prime Books), and the Spanish steampunk anthology Planes B. She has stories forthcoming in Starry Wisdom Library (PS Publishing), Acronos (Tyrannosaurus Books), and in The New Gothic (Stone Skin Press) the latter which features her collaboration with writer extarodinaire Jesse Bullington.
Lillian Cohen-Moore is an award winning editor (Indie RPG Awards, Origins Award, forDo: Pilgrims of the Flying Temple), and devotes her writing to fiction, journalism and game design. Influenced by the work of Jewish authors and horror movies, she draws on bubbe meises (grandmother’s tales) and horror classics for inspiration. She loves exploring and photographing abandoned places. She is a member of the Society of Professional Journalists and the Online News Association.
Indrapramit Das is a writer and artist from Kolkata, India. His fiction has appeared in publications including Clarkesworld Magazine, Asimov’s Science Fiction and Apex Magazine, as well as anthologies such as The Year’s Best Science Fiction: Thirtieth Annual Collection (St. Martin’s Press), Aliens: Recent Encounters (Prime Books) andMothership: Tales from Afrofuturism and Beyond(Rosarium Publishing). He has written reviews of film, books, comics and TV for Strange Horizons and Slant Magazine. He is a grateful graduate of the 2012 Clarion West Writers Workshop and a recipient of the Octavia E. Butler Scholarship Award to attend the former. He completed his MFA at the University of British Columbia and is currently in Vancouver working as a freelance writer, artist, editor, critic, TV extra, game tester, tutor, would-be novelist, and aspirant to adulthood.
Malon Edwards was born and raised on the South Side of Chicago, but now lives in the Greater Toronto Area, where he was lured by his beautiful Canadian wife. Many of his short stories are set in an alternate Chicago and feature people of color. Currently, he serves as Managing Director and Grants Administrator for the Speculative Literature Foundation, which provides a number of grants for writers of speculative literature.
Jaymee Goh is the postcolonial steampunk writer of Silver Goggles, a blog that focuses on postcoloniality, anti-racism and the meaningful participation of people of color in steampunk beyond tokenism. She has been seen on the Apex Book Company Blog,Racialicious.com, and Tor.com. Her non-fiction has been published in Steampunk III: Steampunk Revolution, The WisCon Chronicles, and Fashion Talks: Undressing the Power of Style. Her previously published short stories take place in the same steampunk ‘verse as this one. Currently she is a Comparative Literature PhD student at UC Riverside.
Ken Liu is an author and translator of speculative fiction, as well as a lawyer and programmer. His fiction has appeared in The Magazine of Fantasy & Science Fiction, Asimov’s, Analog, Clarkesworld, Lightspeed, and Strange Horizons, among other places. He has won a Nebula, two Hugos, a World Fantasy Award, and a Science Fiction & Fantasy Translation Award, and been nominated for the Sturgeon and the Locus Awards. He lives with his family near Boston, Massachusetts.
Rochita Loenen-Ruiz is an essayist, a fictionist and a poet. A Filipino writer, now living in the Netherlands, she attended Clarion West in 2009 and was a recipient of the Octavia Butler scholarship. In 2013, her short fiction was shortlisted for the BSFA short fiction award. Most recently, her fiction has appeared in We See a Different Frontier, Mothership: Tales from Afrofuturism and Beyond, What Fates Impose, The End of the Road anthology, and as part of Redmond Radio’s Afrofuturism Event for the Amsterdam Museumnacht at FOAM museum. She also has upcoming work in Clarkesworld Magazine.
Nayad A. Monroe is an editor and short-story writer. She read over 5,000 submissions for the Hugo Award-winning semiprozine,Clarkesworld Magazine, before she became an editor with her anthology of divination stories, What Fates Impose. Several of her short stories have been published in various anthologies, such as Space Grunts: Full-Throttle Space Tales #3; Space Tramps: Full-Throttle Space Tales #5; The Crimson Pact: Volume Two; and Sidekicks!. Her sidekick story, “Quintuple-A,” is scheduled to be made into a short film by Wild Hawk Entertainment. Nayad has also contributed an interview with Tim Powers to Writers Workshop of Science Fiction and Fantasy. You can find her making odd remarks on Twitter as @Nayad.
Balogun Ojetade is author the Steamfunk novel Moses: The Chronicles of Harriet Tubman, the Sword and Soul novel Once Upon A Time in Afrika and the Urban Fantasy novel Redeemer. He is contributing co-editor of the anthologies, Steamfunk and Ki-Khanga: The Anthology. Finally, he is screenwriter and director of the action film, A Single Link and the Steamfunk film Rite of Passage.
Diana M. Pho (Ay-leen the Peacemaker, writing the Introduction) is a scholar, activist, blogger, and general rabble-rouser. She earned her B.A. from Mount Holyoke College and her M.A. from New York University. Awards given for her work include the Steampunk Chronicle Reader’s Choice Awards for “Best Politically-Minded Steampunk” and “Best Multicultural Steampunk” in 2012 and 2013 as well as “Best Blog” and “Best Feminist Steampunk” in 2012; the SteamCon Airship Award for “Community Contributor” in 2013; the Last Drink Bird Head Award for “Gentle Advocacy” in 2010. About her work, New York Times bestselling author of the Leviathan trilogy, Scott Westerfeld has said, “I always point to her to rebut the genre’s haters.” Diana currently lives and works in New York City for Tor Books & blogs for Tor.com.
Nisi Shawl’s collection Filter House was a 2009 James Tiptree, Jr., Award winner; her stories have been published at Strange Horizons, in Asimov’s SF Magazine, and in anthologies including The Year’s Best Fantasy and Horror. She was the 2011 Guest of Honor at the feminist SF convention WisCon and 2014 co-Guest of Honor for the Science Fiction Research Association. She co-authored the renowned Writing the Other: A Practical Approach with Cynthia Ward. Shawl’s Belgian Congo steampunk novel Everfairis forthcoming in 2015 from Tor Books.
Lucy A. Snyder is the Bram Stoker Award-winning author of the novels Spellbent, Shotgun Sorceress, Switchblade Goddess, and the collections Orchid Carousals, Sparks and Shadows, Chimeric Machines, and Installing Linux on a Dead Badger. She will have two new books out in 2014: Shooting Yourself in the Head For Fun and Profit: A Writer’s Guide will be released by Post Mortem Press, and her story collection Soft Apocalypseswill be released by Raw Dog Screaming Press. Her writing has been translated into French, Russian, and Japanese editions and has appeared in publications such as What Fates Impose, Strange Horizons, Weird Tales, Hellbound Hearts, Dark Faith, Chiaroscuro, GUD, and Best Horror of the Year, Vol. 5.
Lucien Moussa Shukri Soulban is an author from Montreal, Canada. He was born in Saudi Arabia, but grew up in Houston, Texas. He has lived in Montreal for 16 years. Lucien Soulban is his real name.As well as numerous credits, both role-playing and fiction, with White Wolf, he has written for Dream Pod 9, AEG, WizKids and Guardians of Order, and has also worked on video games with Relic and Artificial Mind and Movement, among others.
Benjanun Sriduangkaew's short fiction has appeared in Clarkesworld, Beneath Ceaseless Skies, GigaNotoSaurus and anthologies from Solaris Books and Mythic Delirium.
Tade Thompson’s roots are in Western Nigeria and South London. His short stories have been published in small press, webzines and anthologies. Most recently, his story “Notes from Gethsemane” appeared in The Afro SF Anthology, and “Shadow” appeared in The Apex Book of World SF 2, and “120 Days of Sunlight” appeared in Mothership: Tales from Afrofuturism and Beyond. He lives and works in South England. He creates under a unified influence field comprised of books, music, theatre, comics, art, movies, gourmet coffee, and amala. He has been known to haunt coffee shops, jazz bars, bookshops, and libraries. He is an occasional visual artist and tortures his family with his attempts to play the guitar.
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things that ought to be taught in high school:
- consent, relationships and sexuality
- comparative religions: then and now
- political ideologies: then and now
- rational debate
- practical financing
- criticism and fact-checking
- independent research
- introduction to philosophy
- literacy, language and comprehension
- privacy and the internet
- world history
- institutional oppression and recognising bias
things that are actually taught in high school:
- arbitrary bullshit you invariably forget five minutes after the final exam because it has little or no relevance to daily life and doesn’t teach you how to be a compassionate, non-shitty person
It starts on the very first day of year one, when you go to sit a table full of boys you know and like and who, you thought, liked you, too, only to have them get up as one and relocate to the next table over, muttering about “girl germs”. You follow them out of shock, refusing to sit alone and humiliated. This time, the teacher makes them stay put. They respond by refusing to meet or gaze or talk to you. The next day, you sit somewhere else.
For the next six years, your ability to play sport will be constantly questioned. At each new game, with each new group of boys, you have to establish the same rapport over and over again, first begging to be allowed to join in, then shrugging off the same hurtful jibes about how girls are bad at handball, at soccer, at football, at cricket, at hockey, until you’re finally tested and found, to their great surprise, to be capable. You establish a reputation as being better than other girls, an exception to the usual rule of useless girlishness, and in so doing learn to hate and fear your own femininity.
Even so, some boys - older, bigger, stronger - dislike your presence in their world. One polices your friendships, mocking the smaller boys who play with you at lunch until they leave you alone. Others bully in subtle ways, stealing your possessions, goading you quietly so that your retaliation, and not their abuse, is invariably reprimanded by nearby teachers. You learn when to resist, and when to keep quiet.
At age ten, a strange boy approaches you at a joint school camp and asks you out during archery practise. You ask him why, rather than saying yes; you don’t know him at all. He grins and tells you his friends dared him to ask out the ugliest girl he could find. Your blank stare clearly disappoints him. He turns away, disgusted and angry that he didn’t hurt you more.
Back at school, your early-developing classmate is teased mercilessly for having to wear bras already. You, meanwhile, are mocked by the very same boys for not needing them.
Aged eleven, you start high school, still braless. Boys and girls both yell at you to cover your tits when you run, then mock you in the next breath for being flat-chested. When you do finally start wearing bras, even the barest visible outline of a strap is grounds for criticism, and lord help the full-chested girls.
In metalwork, a boy with a acne scars grabs a thick metal file as long as your forearm, stands behind you, and shoves it up between your legs. Only his bad aim prevents genuine injury. When you yell at him, he grins.
One weekened, age twelve or thirteen, your parents are mystified to find that one of the family cars has been egged and decorated with tampons, seemingly for no reason. No other car in the street is touched. It puzzles you, too, until you’re passed a note on the train the following Monday, courtesy of boys who are two and three years older than you, only one of whom goes to your school. The rest live in your neighbourhood; they know you only by sight. The note details your physical failings - saggy tits, bad hair, hairy legs. You don’t read any further than that. You hear them laughing at the back of the carriage, hoping for a reaction. Instead, you quietly fold up the note and drop it between the seats.
A year later, those same boys make a game of blocking the train doors, first keeping you away from the water fountain, then preventing you from going back to reclaim your bag until the train is practically at your stop. They do this for days. When you finally snap and shove them, they laugh, pin your arms behind your back, and squirt shaving cream in your eyes.
For unrelated reasons, aged fourteen, you change schools sporting a new short haircut. Because the cut reminds him of Leelee Sobieski’s Joan of Arc, one classmate calls you John for the next three years, even after your hair has grown out.
Hanging out with male friends on the weekend, the lot of you go swimming. Afterwards, your friends awkwardly ask you to put a top on over your swimsuit; the sight is distracting them. They remain shirtless; you don’t know what to say. Later, on a different outing, some of them laugh at the grossness of cunnilingus. Trying to fit in, you make a joke about periods, and find yourself shouted down because the thought of “a bloody axe-wound” is so repulsive.
You learn to tell jokes about women, about blondes (which you are), about domestic violence and sexual assault, in order to fit in. You praise yourself for being better than other girls, for understanding that jokes don’t hurt anybody. (You don’t yet notice how the deception is hurting you.)
Near the end of school, a different group of boys tries to compliment you for your active sex life - or at least, for their perception of it. Much to their surprise, they find they have to invent a word that specifically praises female sexuality: all the existing terms are either critical, or meant in praise of men.
At university, you dodge sexual assault three times: first, when you go to a party at the all boys’ college, and a guy you’ve never met grabs you, kisses you, and repeatedly tries to pull you into his room against your protestations; again, when a boy at your own college drunkenly mistakes your unlocked room for his, climbs into bed with you, and makes several attempts at initiating something before you finally get him to leave; and then again, when a strange man walks with you for twenty minutes after you leave the pub, talking all the while about how you ought to cheat on your respective partners together. When you finally get inside without him, your legs are shaking.
And then, of course, there are the boyfriends themselves. The one who called you “cute and helpless”, and laughed himself sick when you tried to explain how this wasn’t a compliment. The one who tells you, regretfully, how you used to be a “lithe, young thing”, but now that you’ve gone from an 8 to a 10, you have “fat all over your body,” which is a real shame. He tells you his exes “spoiled” him, because they were all so fit, and sighs meaningfully every time you eat ice cream. On another occasion, he gaslights your progressive symptoms of unwellness for over a week, calling you a hypochondriac, saying there’s “no disease in the world” with your symptoms. He stops you from going to the doctor; because it’s a waste of time. Only when you collapse in front of him with a burning fever - the product of a UTI turned into a nasty kidney infection because you didn’t seek help at the outset - does he admit his error. (He never apologises.)
Finally, in your twenties, you discover feminism. You have a good partner now, one who supports and cares for you. You start to blog about the world, about culture, about women, about your experiences, about politics. Slowly, you discover intersectionality, your white, straight, cis privilege. You realise your own internalised misogyny, the lies you told yourself to cope with every scantily-clad billboard model, every male-lead narrative, every princess fad and pink-drenched toy aisle, every joke about how all women love shoes when you loathe shoe shopping as a form of cruel and unusual punishment, every domestic advert about perfect mothers and germ-obsessed housewives - all the flotsam and jetsam of everyday sexism that permeates your life; which has always permeated your life. And in return, you receive, among other things, rape threats, abusive tirades, and calm declarations of disagreement from men who don’t understand why their belief that women are only good for sex and inherently lesser mentally should be at all offensive.
Age twenty-seven, you become a mother to a son, and as you plan for his future, you are overwhelmed when you realise what toxic lies the world will teach him about women, should you fail to teach him empathy.
You aren’t yet thirty, but you’re already tired.
And your story is still ongoing.
I find it incredibly ironic that the sort of guy who defends the hypersexualised portrayal of female comics characters with “but the men are sexualised too!” is invariably also the same sort of guy who gets freaked out and/or furious when women talk about the hotness of the cast of Avengers, because OBVIOUSLY, if we admit to being attracted to the characters, then we’re superficial Fake Geek Girls and not really proper fans. Whereas, of course, buying spinebroken, boobiecentric maquettes of Black Widow and drooling over Scarlett Johansson’s catsuit? Both totally valid expressions of fandom.
paulapopper asked: Hi! I got a good chuckle out of the video with the woman being swarmed by baby goats. I really laughed when I realized the woman is my friend, Sarah Chandler, who works for the Isabella Freedman Jewish Retreat Center in CT. We often call her the goat woman.
It’s a small world!