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Tag Archives: writing
I think there’s humor in the hypocrisy of a movement that fights for marriage equality while lauding a film like “Brokeback Mountain” as romantic when the core basis of the film is an extra-marital affair. But it seems being on the down’low is acceptable as long as those engaging in it are white and only betraying women. Although the theme of pretending to be something you’re not fits in quite well with the homogenizing view of the large GLBTQ organizations.
I believe that the fierceness and power of the movement has been bled out by the constant focus on marriage equality as the only issue of importance perpetuated by large, wealthy, privileged groups such as GLAAD and the HRC who are looking out for themselves as opposed to the community as a whole.
I don’t understand how fighting tooth and claw for inclusion in such a problematic power structure such as marriage is a fight for everyone’s equality. A marginalized group fighting for a bigger piece of the pie rather than the eradication of the system has never led to liberation.
I understand that marriage is a prison, has a historical basis in silencing women and trading them like pieces of chattel and that a mere fifty years of “change” or transgressive reinterpretations can in no way wipe out a history of oppression and inequality stretching back centuries.
So both my readings last week went exceptionally well. I got a bunch of compliments on my prose piece and am going to submit it somewhere this week and despite my fear the Manifesto reading went swimmingly. The audience got what I was saying and was whooping and hollering in agreement. In fact after the reading I had a few people come up to me and ask if they could find it online or if it was posted anywhere. I had been on the fence about putting it up online simply because it is pretty radical and the blogosphere is a very different environment than the very radical space I was in for the reading. I’m not up for some of the comments I’ll inevitably get but having folks ask me if they could find it online made me realize that if no one sees or hears a manifesto what is the freaking point?!
So my Manifesto, Not The Marrying Kind will be going up in five parts this week. I’m breaking it up, not to make more posts out of it (or at least not just because of that) but because it’s the way I wrote it – in a series of chunks - and I like the idea of it being experienced in that way. In fact at the reading since we had interruptions from the audience they got it broken into sections as well and I think it worked very well, allowing folks to take in the previous points before moving on. Keep in mind that this is an early iteration of the work and it may grow, shrink, shift during any future re-writes however the core of it will not alter.
Not The Marrying Kind: Intro
It’s been a month since my last post and I thought I’d explain my absence. It’s a confluence of a couple of factors, planning the immediate future has taken a lot of my time and energy, RaceFail ’09 has made me bitter, angry and apathetic and finally my second semester of Grad School is kicking my ass so hard I had to drop a class. I tried to write a post over the last month but I couldn’t think of anything to write:
Writing? Before last week I hadn’t written any new fiction since the end of January
Oppression? RaceFail ’09 made me so angry I could not write about privilege and power dynamics without literally feeling sick to my stomach
SF/F? See my answer to Oppression and there hasn’t been a SF/F show that’s pulled me in in ages and until the beginning of March I hadn’t red for the pure pleasure of reading for a long time.
Music? School? Work? Miscellania? Apathy x 10
But this is not a whiny I’m leaving the internetz post. This is saying that thanks to my spring break (which I’m still currently on) and my vow to step away from all but the most dire of my resposibilities during the week; getting to see/talk to a bunch of great folks like my HLB Allison, Tempest, Nora, etc.; immersing myself in some writing (mine and other peoples) and trips to a few museums I am actually feeling inspired and excited more so than I have in a long time. It may not last but I’m gonna try and hold onto the feeling so forecast for more frequent posts looks good…once I’m back from spring break of course.
So I decided to write a short little something for The ReMyth Project I mentioned in my last post.
A soft curl of wind brought sounds of the slow movement of water to Marie’s ears. The quiet splashes could mark simple movement or the death of a million creatures that birthed, lived, hunted, devoured, mated and died in this balance of earth and water. The wind turned, the quiet sounds were gone, and Marie was swept back into the celebration. She focused her aged eyes on the young girls in front of her, dressed all in white they danced and leapt their way around the circle. Even those who closed their eyes avoided the ring of torches that encircled them. Some swirled so close that the fire set off cascades of red/orange/yellow in their brown skin, lit their clothes with the shadow of flame so that for that moment they were fire itself but they never got too close, always aware.
Then the drumbeats that moved their feet stopped and like dolls whose strings had been cut they all fell to the floor, exhausted. All, except for one girl, she stood in the middle of the circle stock still. Her form was tense and every muscle strained against earthly existence, against the bonds that held her to her body.
Marie raised herself to her feet, slowly, coddling the joints that pained her so. Though in part she knew that she lied to herself about her aches, Marie could not recall a time her body did not ache. It was not the ache that slowed her movement, she was simply tired. It had been a long life and she longed for freedom from her responsibilities, from the constant ache in her heart. Marie knew of the rumors that flew through the white mouths in town - that she was the devil’s mistress, that she would live forever, that she could bring death upon those who angered her.
None were true but the rumors served their purpose.
The police and courts did not care about her people, only she did. The rumors helped to protect them and for that and that alone she allowed their continued existence. She knew the part the story of her played and so she had stayed, living way past the normal human allotment of years not because she willed it but because the lwa did. They wanted her to wait.
Standing in front of the girl Marie took in the youthful curves of her body, the whites of her eyes bright and shining, the rapturous look on her face. A part of Marie dreaded this, putting all the responsibility on one so young but she had always been a servant of the lwas and that would not change now. She leant forward and placed a chaste kiss on the girl’s full lips.
Marie felt her body relax and looked down at the wrinkled face in front of her. Raising an arm, she cradled the loose flesh of a cheek in her hand and spoke.
“Your time is done. I will stand.”
With that the old woman sighed and her body crumbled to dust, it swirled in the wind and finally flowed from the circle, moved out to rejoin the swamp the old woman had always loved. She watched the movement of the remains through the air for a long moment. Then, Marie Laveau, turned to her congregation.
Quickie – wrote in in about 40 minutes, let me know what you think.
So I’ve gone ahead and submitted a second thing for the month of January, after all my resolution was only at least one publication a month not only one. High on my first fiction publication promise I submitted my story “Ode to an Idea on a Winter’s Night, When the Sun is Low and the World is Fading” to Strange Horizons today. Keep your fingers crossed!
Also somehow I missed the fact that my second semester of grad school starts in less than a week. Somebody save me.
So as some probably already know I’m part of the Black Science Fiction Society, a website to gather Black authors and fans of F/SF. A few months ago a member of the site, Milton Davis, decided to put together an anthology to showcase members of the site and our work.
Well Mr. Davis announced the stories and authors that will be in the Black Science Fiction Society Anthology when it’s published later this year and one of the stories is my own Summer.Heat.Fever.
Pretty Damn Awesome!
Other authors in the anthology range from general unknowns (like myself) to authors who’ve had novels and short stories published such as Carole McDonnell and even includes the legendary F/SF author, Charles Saunders.
So my first submission for 2009 went amazing! I don’t expect to get into most or even any of the other publications I submit to this year but it’s a great way to start off my 2009 resolution. The story list looks awesome and I can’t wait to read the work when it comes out. More info as I get it.
Next I’m thinking of submitting my story Ode to an… to Strange Horizons after another go-through. I’m also working on a dystopic SF short (tentatively titled Blinded) to submit to an anthology in February.
Now I know usually you’re supposed to make your resolution at the beginning of the year but I’ve broken my supposed resolutions so much in my life that I’ve simply stopped making them. But this resolution came to me as I was emailing my friend Terese. We were catching up and talking about writing and story ideas as we often do and about actually submitting our work to publications. See I always talk about gathering the courage to submit my fiction and sometimes I do it but not nearly often enough for who I want to be and where I want to go in terms of my writing career.
So my resolution for 2009? That every month I will submit to at least one publication. I’ve already submitted for this month, a short story called Summer.Heat.Fever. to an anthology. I’ll let you guys know the response as soon as I hear from them.
In other news, I thought I would be less busy now that I’m out of school but all the things I put off because I was so busy with school? They’ve all come rushing back with a vengeance but I’m going to make a really concerted effort to publish posts twice a week at least.