Links: Thursday, December 5th

December 5, 2013 Links 2

An "Elf on the Shelf" doll and another male doll are dressed up with a present box in front of their crotches, a la the "Dick in a Box" SNL sketch.Inappropriate Elf on the Shelf

  • The nominees, if you please: Bad Sex Awards 2013 or When did literariness become synonymous with sterile? – Remittance Girl offers her take on the Bad Sex Awards and lists a number of links to posts about them.

    Why would anything intended to be erotic be excluded? Perhaps because writing that is intended to arouse can never be considered ‘literary’ at all, and so falls below their purview. If any writing intended to arouse is beneath consideration, it’s hardly surprising writers seeking literary acclaim steer clear of it, and end up writing so much depressing sex instead. When did ‘literariness’ become synonymous with sterile?

    Links to some articles on ‘The Bad Sex Awards, 2013′ or, ‘gee, it’s so hard to write sex well when you have to make sure you don’t turn anyone on and lose respectably ‘

  • ‘Disabled’ Mannequins Remind Us That Beautiful Doesn’t Mean ‘Perfect’ – This is an interesting idea and worthy cause, but the framing is terrible. Please, please, stop contrasting disabled bodies with “perfect” ones. I liked seeing the models in the video react to their mannequins, but the emo piano track playing made it pretty clear that it was looking for pity tears from non-disabled viewers. (Why am I linking this? I don’t know.)

    Pro Infirmis, an organization for the disabled, created a series of mannequins based on real people with physical disabilities, working with individuals like Jasmine Rechsteiner, a Miss Handicap winner who has spine malformations, and Erwin Aljukić, an actor with brittle bone disease. The project’s title? “Because Who Is Perfect? Get Closer.”

    The beautiful process was documented in a video (watch it above), capturing the joy of the models seeing their own unique figures recreated for the first time.

  • Kobo “Declines” ANOTHER Transgender Title: My Mistress’ Thighs by Giselle Renarde – Kobo has handled this self-published erotic content issue about as poorly as they could have. In the absence of transparent guidelines, accounts like these are pretty damning.

    As I mentioned, FIVE of my titles (out of nearly 30 that I’ve uploaded to Kobo) have been “declined” (censored, restricted, banned, deemed unfit for sale–call it what you like).

    Every one of those FIVE titles was an erotic romance ebook with the word “transgender” in the metadata.

    Last time I blogged about Kobo censoring transgender romances, I disclosed that some of the transgender titles that have been “declined” contain very little erotic content. Most are love stories that involve transgender issues. Take Eclipse the Stars as an example: it’s about a couple dealing with jealousy and other issues within the context of a long-term trans lesbian relationship.

  • Another World Waits: Towards an Anti-Oppressive SFF – Daniel José Older pens a fabulous piece about speculative fiction and the stories it needs to tell.

    Be courageous, they say. It’s your job as a writer. Yes, and we are, we are. And still we struggle, stifle, collapse, recuperate. There are no guidelines or dos and don’ts for writing about what three hundred years of euphemisms and a whole academic/political machinery still can’t quite figure out how to face head–on. We know this: the publishing world is overwhelmingly white. Writers of color puzzle over rejection letters that say things like, “Great writing and story but I didn’t identify with the main character.” What are we to do with such a comment? Write more universal characters, some will say. Universal has become an empty word; it generally indicates a false neutral that more–or–less resembles whiteness. Do we then write the character as we imagine the white imagination imagines people of color? How many layers of fantasy and identity must we breach to walk that delicate line between truthtelling and pacifying?

  • Masculinity, Gender (Non)Conformity, and Queer Visibility – An interesting look at how gender is performed and how it shapes someone’s perceived identity.

    She artistically explores the ways that subtle changes in hairstyle, makeup, and clothing cause dramatic transformations in how others perceive her. And while Coco’s more “femme” presentations helped her get a job, she also discusses the ways that those same presentations of her body worked against queer visibility. As Coco put it: “I struggle with femme visibility and find it a little challenging to have the queer community recognize me to be ‘as queer as they are’ because of how femme I look sometimes”.

    While gender identity and performance and sexual identity are not the same, gendered practices and presentations also signal membership in sexual communities, as Coco points out. Often gender nonconformity is socially interpreted as a declaration of gay identity. And, conversely, gender conformity is often “read” as straight. So, gender conforming gay men and women and gender nonconforming straight men and women might struggle with visibility.

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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.

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2 Responses to “Links: Thursday, December 5th”

  1. Merrian

    I love your links, I am an avid reader of Natalie’s linkage on Radish Reviews and I appreciate how your choices for linkage add more humour and rage and thinking to my life.

  2. Ridley

    @Merrian: Thanks! I like how Natalie, Robin over at DA and lots of other people run links roundups and still manage not to overlap much. There’s so much good stuff out there to read.