Well, it’s June, and I have actually kept up with my Goodreads page!
Not every book gets a review, and the reviews are really, really short. But I’m keeping up.
Earlier this week my son was watching Last Week Tonight With John Oliver. It was an older episode, the one about U.S. Territories. At one point a women speaks in very racist terms about the rational for keeping some things territories.
My son paused the show to flip her off.
He apologized to the rest of us in the room. He knew it was rude. But he also understood that some views require a response and that the correct response for “people with dark skin can’t be trusted with citizenship” is saying a rousing “fuck you and your racist views.”
We didn’t teach him that on PURPOSE. It just happened, listening to us and our world.
This morning my friends’ son went to school in a dress. He’s tried this before, skirts and dresses, and the school principal objects to it for reasons I’m not perfectly clear on. What began as an expression of solidarity for genderqueer kids everywhere has turned into a more direct confrontation with an adult’s … gender-expression-phobia? I guess we’ll call it?
My friends didn’t put him up to this. He feels that this is an injustice that needs protest.
It makes me feel good about the future, it does.
MediAvengers is a fabulous Tumblr that places the MCU in the media of our world.
“The secret behind the longevity of Nancy Drew and the Hardy Boys is simple. They’re still here because their creators found a way to minimize cost, maximize output, and standardize creativity. The solution was an assembly line that made millions by turning writers into anonymous freelancers—a business model that is central to the Internet age.”
Because of the knitting, you see.
Heidi Waterhouse at Write the Docs, “Success Is More Than Not-Failing.”
It’s with great pleasure I can say that the Queers Destroy Science Fiction issue of Lightspeed Magazine is available NOW.
“Even in science fiction, supposedly the genre of limitless possibility, where everyone is invited to the adventure, heterosexual, heteroromantic, and cisgendered are considered the default, to the extent that everything else is “deviation,” and must be eyed with suspicion. This issue contains 10 original science fiction short stories (selected by guest editor Seanan McGuire), including new stories by award-winning queer authors Amal El-Mohtar, and John Chu; 4 classic short story reprints and a novella reprint (selected by guest reprint editor Steve Berman); approx. 10,000 words of original flash fiction (selected by guest flash fiction editor Sigrid Ellis); 7 nonfiction articles (selected by guest nonfiction editor Mark Oshiro); approx. 30 personal essays about the experience reading and writing science fiction as a queer person (selected by managing editor Wendy N. Wagner); original artwork (selected by and featuring a cover by guest art director Elizabeth Leggett); and more!”
Look at it! It’s awesome! Loooooooooook!
All my thanks to John Joseph Adams and the staff at Lightspeed for making this a thing that happens. Especial thanks to guest editor Seanan McGuire for including me in the project.
And my profound gratitude to all of you. You who supported the Kickstarter, who buy the magazine, who write and submit, who read and love and spread the word. You are why this all happens, you know? You do know that, right? Without you QDSF wouldn’t be real.
“And all the characters with disabilities, are not there because this is a Very Special Episode of the Apocalypse. They’re there to show that this world is goddamn hard on human bodies – and to show the state of medical and assistive technology – and to show priorities. The people are like the things in this world in one way: the valuable ones are too valuable to waste just because some part of them isn’t working to spec. Instead they weld on part of some other machine, to make it work; and add weapons capability while they’re at it. And they don’t bother trying to make the prosthetics look naturalistic. In a way, in this mutated world, the aesthetic celebrates physical variety, somatic change.”
“But there’s something inescapably young-adult dystopian about the MTV red carpets, where most of the attendees are too young to rent a car but are handling a personal brand and quite often some network or label expectations. And they are all so very young; actors playing high school characters trying to look older than they are, the older actors trying as much as possible to look like high school. It’s an entire runway of forced-casual cognitive dissonance.”
Women of Game of Thrones fanvid, “Run Boy Run,” by hollywoodgrrl. Violence, rape, torture all on-screen.
Six clips from Mad Max: Fury Road
I put that GoT fanvid next to the clips from Fury Road for a reason. I like GoT, a lot, even. But there are ways and there are ways of showing dysfunctional, misogynist, abusive worlds.
I was on four panels this year. Two were on geek dating and convention hookups. One was about older heroes. One was a Penny Dreadful fan panel.
None of those particularly lend themselves to detailed reviews, alas! But a few points of note:
1. Georgie Schnobrich is a delight as a panelist. Being on a panel with her is great. Attending a panel she is on is great. I highly recommend it.
2. I met Megan Condis for the first time on one of the panels, and she was great. Had very good things to say about dating and pickup culture. She is also a game designer, working on a dating sim that incorporates consent culture, and I recommend you keep an eye on this one. It sounds fantastic.
3. I attended the Little Known Goddesses panel, and the best question from the audience was from a teenage girl. The future of fandom is alive and well and quite perceptive and articulate.
4. If you are interested in panel reviews, I recommend you check out the #wc39 tag on Twitter, and find the individual panel hashtags that way.
5. I seem to be on a lot of dating and hookup panels in the last few years, which is deeply amusing to me since I don’t pick people up or ask them out. But this whole flirting – dating thing is one that does not come easily to me or well, and so I have had it EXPLAINED to me, and therefore I feel I can pass those explanations on to others. In a way, perhaps, that people who are better at flirting might not be able to do.
6. I think my favorite panel this year was the Penny Dreadful fan panel. Which was at 8:30 on Monday morning, but the folks who showed were all fans, and we were all enthusiastic, and the entire room seemed to have a good time. The hashtag for that one is #wcdreadful, and I recommend checking it out. Some audience members were doing a good job of keeping up with the tweets. (I mean, go check it out if you like the show. Alas, it’s really only relevant to fans.)
7. Oh, another of my favorite panelists this year (and every year!) was Na’amen Tilahun. Highly recommend seeing a panel with Na’amen, if you get the chance.
It was a good year, overall. I, ALAS, missed a number of the really thought-provoking, serious panels about the past and future of Wiscon because I was burned out and needed quiet time by 4:00 in the afternoon, every day. If any of y’all know of writeups or storifys of those, I would really appreciate a link! Thank you!
The Vid Party at Wiscon was great, as usual. Among the premiered vids were two I want to mention specifically.
Garrdeb’s Hope In the Air, a fanvid for volume one of the comic Pretty Deadly.
Now, I am the editor of that comic. I am entirely biased. But this is a great fanvid. There’s something in taking the still images in giving them a sense of motion that Garrdeb is good at. (You may recall her Captain Marvel vid from a few years back.)
The second vid is brainwane’s Pipeline, about women in the tech industry.
This is heartbreaking.
From initial hope to bitter disappointment to exhausted complicity to rage, this is the pipeline of women in tech. The vid is clear and funny and painful and sad, and it’s set to “Blank Space,” and, and, and …
(Click to watch.)
I told the vidder that the reason I love this, the reason it makes me cry, is that this vid is taking the erased and excised women in tech and putting them back into our collective history.
We can’t forget, no matter how much we are encouraged to do so, the women who make the world.