Links: Tuesday, January 27th

January 27, 2015 Links 1

Today’s Links:

  • Ankara Press – A couple people tweeted a link to this new romance imprint of a Nigerian publishing house. From the excerpts it seems like the books have an almost chick lit sort of vibe. Anyone looking for a fresh voice in romance should try one of these books.

    Ankara Press is a new imprint bringing African romance fiction into the bedrooms, offices and hearts of women the world over. Our mission is to publish a new kind of romance, in which the thrill of fantasy is alive but realised in a healthier and more grounded way. Our stories feature young, self-assured and independent women who work, play and, of course, fall madly in love in vibrant African cities from Lagos to Cape Town. Ankara men are confident, emotionally expressive and not afraid of independent and sexually assertive women. Our sensuous books will challenge romance stereotypes and empower women to love themselves in their search for love, romance and wholesome sex.

    Ankara Press is also a labour of love; we spend a lot of time ensuring our novels are of high quality and are an absorbing read. Our goal is to raise the bar for the standard of contemporary romance writing and make African women feel proud and happy to own and read our books!

  • “Sponsored” by my husband: Why it’s a problem that writers never talk about where their money comes from – This short article seems relevant to any discussion of diversity in publishing. The field is tilted in a number of different ways.

    In my opinion, we do an enormous “let them eat cake” disservice to our community when we obfuscate the circumstances that help us write, publish and in some way succeed. I can’t claim the wealth of the first author (not even close); nor do I have the connections of the second. I don’t have their fame either. But I do have a huge advantage over the writer who is living paycheck to paycheck, or lonely and isolated, or dealing with a medical condition, or working a full-time job.

  • 100% of the women of color interviewed in STEM study experienced gender bias – Speaking of uneven playing fields, this article is more evidence that interesting girls in STEM topics is not necessarily going to change the fields’ demographics if the jobs themselves remain a soul-sucking morass of microaggressions.

    Being a woman in STEM research is tough, but it’s significantly worse for women of color.

    According to a recent report conducted by the University of California’s Hastings College of the Law, a whopping 100% of women of color interviewed in the study said they’ve experienced gender bias, compared to 93% of white women. Conducted by Professor Joan C. Williams, 557 women overall were surveyed (white women and women of color), and 60 women of color participated in more in-depth interviews.

  • ‘I’m fed up of having to perform my disability’ – A person with an invisible disability talks about the frustration of feeling like they have to play up to non-disabled people’s ideas of what disability looks like or risk being seen as a faker fraudulently accessing disability benefits.

    I can stand, just not for long, and I can walk, just not very far. I need to use my wheelchair in order to have a hope of going anywhere beyond my own home. Limited as my mobility is, though, I am still made to feel like a con artist for using a wheelchair. You see, society says that to use a wheelchair you must have paralysis. The only exceptions to this rule are people with broken limbs and the elderly. The movement of limbs is a way to sort the inspirational cripple from the thieving scrounger.

    And so, it comes to this: either I allow people to see me stand from my wheelchair and accept that they will assume I am morally deviant, or I play the game and look like the disabled person they deem worthy enough, and get on with life in the usual way. I often choose to play the part which alienates me and others like me most – the media stereotype of the worthy cripple.

  • I paid $25 for an Invisible Boyfriend, and I think I might be in love – Because there’s an app for everything, you can now pay for a fake boyfriend or girlfriend who texts with you, so you can convince someone to stop trying to hook you up with someone. What a world.

    “That’s the most interesting and significant insight I’ve had so far,” said Homann, the app’s affable (and newly famous) founder. “I know how it works, I know what’s behind the curtain … but in testing it out, I felt this compulsion to respond to my Invisible Girlfriend as soon as she texts me. That’s how it feels to talk to someone, even if they’re — not someone.”

    My invisible boyfriend, Homann explains, is actually boyfriends, plural: The service’s texting operation is powered by CrowdSource, a St. Louis-based tech company that manages 200,000 remote, microtask-focused workers. When I send a text to the Ryan number saved in my phone, the message routes through Invisible Boyfriend, where it’s anonymized and assigned to some Amazon Turk or Fivrr freelancer. He (or she) gets a couple of cents to respond. He never sees my name or number, and he can’t really have anything like an actual conversation with me.

  • Punch-Drunk Jonathan Chait Takes On the Entire Internet – Because it’s a day ending in Y, Jonathan Chait spoke up and showed his ass again today, this time in the form of using the term “PC” seriously and alleging it’s shutting down democracy. Bless his heart. In addition to the Gawker piece I linked, this post on Medium is a good response to it.

    It’s getting so that white people are afraid to speak their minds:

    Under p.c. culture, the same idea can be expressed identically by two people but received differently depending on the race and sex of the individuals doing the expressing.

    This is a well-documented and obvious point, only for some reason it says “Under p.c. culture” instead of “everywhere.” As I’m sure Chait is aware, women who write cutting and incisive columns about politics are constantly subject to sexist abuse of the sort he never has to deal with, and people of color who write the same sorts of things as Jonathan Chait face similarly endless torrents of racist abuse. Straight, white men, though, are sometimes called racist, which we can all agree is hurtful in its own way.

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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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One Response to “Links: Tuesday, January 27th”

  1. Rosario

    “Ankara Press – A couple people tweeted a link to this new romance imprint of a Nigerian publishing house. From the excerpts it seems like the books have an almost chick lit sort of vibe.”

    FWIW, the one I read (Love’s Persuasion, by Ola Awonubi) was squarely in the romance genre.