- Writerly Ethos – Emma Barry has a sort of author mission statement post and it all just sounds so pleasant.
I am a heroine-centric reader and writer. My heroines tend to be a bit of a mess, but they are all finding their way out of the mess. I tend to catch them on the journey down into the valley, so to speak. While my heroines may be in the process of becoming, regardless of what stage of life they’re at, they all have agency. I feel more sympathy and understanding for them, which may lead me to paint them in watercolor.
- Your Local Brick & Mortar Bookstore Is A Privilege – In the wake of the negotiations between Hachette and Amazon, there have been appeals for readers to “do the right thing” and “support authors” by shopping at an independent bookstore. This post is a good reminder that shopping at a bookstore isn’t easy for lots of people.
I live in a book desert. My town of roughly 10,000 people is fairly rural, and while we’re a half-hour’s drive from two 40,000+ towns, neither of those towns has a thriving local independent bookstore. I moved here from Austin, Texas, where I had the privilege of going to Book People any time I wanted to.
The nearest Barnes & Noble is an hour drive each way from where I live, and it is one of the most underwhelming Barnes & Noble stores I’ve been to. It’s great if you want a copy of John Grisham or John Green’s books. It’s less great if you want just about anything else. I can pick up those same books at my in-town big box retailer, which serves as our local bookstore. It, along with the Goodwill, are the only places in town to buy books.
- Essay: Bigotry, Cognitive Dissonance, and Submission Guidelines – Charles Tan has a good analysis of a recent call for submissions for a SFF anthology called “World Encounters.” If you haven’t read it yet, Natalie Luhrs also had a good summary of what it was and why it’s so bad.
Now there are two points I want to tackle: the submission guidelines itself, for the Formalists out there, and the editor. Why does the latter matter? Because as someone whose culture has been marginalized, to quote Hiromi Goto, I don’t want to be part of “a long legacy of silencing, erasing, distorting and misinforming.” And when you’re a writer, your immediate gatekeeper is your editor. You want your editor to be someone informed, someone you can trust. Imagine, for example, if the editor of an LGBT anthology was Orson Scott Card. Wouldn’t you, either as a writer or a reader, find that problematic?
- Race, Gender and Academic Jobs – A white woman academic relates the racist comments a department chair made to her about a black woman academic who’d been denied tenure.
At this moment my brain was telling me to abandon ship — to tell this woman that her statements were offensive, inappropriate, and of course, incredibly racist — but I kept quiet and finished my kale. I still wanted this job. I kept my mouth shut. When I got back to my hotel room I immediately Googled the woman who had been denied tenure for being a black feminist (she was not on the search committee, so I had not researched her earlier). Now, as I looked over the classes she had been teaching and the work she had completed, I was unsurprised to see that her interests focused on race and gender – Dr. Chair had implied as much. She had even done work on … wait for it … the marginalization of women of color in academe.
Inside Higher Ed
- Why do misogynists deserve the “privacy” the women they abuse are denied? – While I’m not in agreement that “if these emails had been on any other topic” (i.e. racism, homophobia) they’d have been greeted with the appropriate level of outrage, I do agree that the urge to shield a man from consequences for his words is both widespread and baffling.
Scudamore left no daylight between his professional life and his sexism. Yet it has been insisted in every outlet from the Times (Leader) to the Mirror (Carol McGiffin) to the Guardian (Marina Hyde) that emails sent at work, through a work account monitored by an employee, about and to colleagues should be classed as a private matter. (And yes, I noticed how many of those pieces were bylined to women. Maybe working in a massively sexist institution like a newspaper skews your sense of what is acceptable.) If these emails had been on any other topic, the idea of classing them as “private” would be laughable: it’s only because they’re misogynistic that people are anxious to separate them from Scudamore’s public role.
- The Untold Story of The Iroquois Influence On Early Feminists – I ran across this link on Twitter and I thought it was super interesting.
It is difficult for white Americans today to picture the extended period in history when — before the United States government’s Indian-reservation system, like apartheid, concretized a separation of the races in the last half of the nineteenth century — regular trade, cultural sharing, even friendship between Native Americans and Euro-Americans was common. Perhaps nowhere was this now-lost social ease more evident than in the towns and villages in upstate New York where Elizabeth Cady Stanton and Matilda Joslyn Gage lived, and Lucretia Mott visited. All three suffragists personally knew Iroquois women, citizens of the six-nation confederacy (Seneca, Cayuga, Onondaga, Oneida, Mohawk, and later Tuscarora) that had established peace among themselves before Columbus came to this “old” world.
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An ice hockey fan from north of Boston and the genre's most beloved troll, Ridley enjoys reading contemporary and historical romance, as well as the odd erotica novel. As someone who uses a wheelchair, she takes a particular interest in disability themes.