Feminist Monday

Today's Halloween link: The Witches of Worm

Today's video is a TED talk given by Ziauddin Yousafzai and is about his daughter Malala. Before you decide to feel superior about American culture and its treatment of women and girls, think again. These are the same attitudes here in the U.S.. They are merely dialed up five or so notches.

Literary/Entertainment: New York Comic-Con's anti-harassment policy, Obituary: Zilpha Keatley Snyder--this makes me sad. She was my favorite childhood author. Gendered discourse on fandom, How a picture of girls playing D&D went from cool to awesome--for the record, Gary Gygax was known for being sexist. This is why I knew right away that would've never been an ad for D&D. Qaisra Shahraz Interview, Stories Like Passwords--aka Why Literary Mentoring Can Be a Minefield for Women (or any other form of mentoring,) Jennifer Lawrence says nude photo theft is a 'sex crime'--I have so much respect for her. She's amazing.

General: Black women in Britain – from the Romans to the Windrush--over the weekend, Dane and I went to the Texas Ren-Faire and I was happy to see persons of color being mixed into the costumed actors for a change. (Now, if only they'd grant them bigger roles.) Microsoft CEO Suggests Women Not Ask for Raises, Trust in 'Karma', Gal Science: On Working with Dark Energy, 6 Reasons You Should Stop Referring To Women As “Females” Right Now--I'm posting this link NOT because I agree with it, I DON'T. I'm posting it because I think it's a topic worthy of discussion. My issue with this position is that female is a neutral word in my experience and a clinical one. I don't believe it is the word that should be excised from out vocabulary. It's the attitude described. Frankly, the example the article gives isn't one I've heard. I HAVE heard the word "woman" used this way. Do we remove it from our vocabulary too? While I absolutely agree there are instances of words that should not ever be used in reference to other people I believe that in this case, this isn't one of them. Now, ask me about the word "Lady" and we'll talk. Greg Abbott lacks proof Wendy Davis is under FBI scrutiny Oh, Texas Republicans. [rolls eyes] Indiana state trooper pulls woman over and asks 'do you accept Jesus Christ as your savior?' And this is why we SHOULD have separation of Church and State. See? Dangers Of Traveling While Female--I feel this way when walking aroun my OWN city, let alone a foreign one. The privilege of affluence, status and a Princeton degree: Trumped by race, When the Nuns on the Bus rolled into Chicago, When Bad Allies Get “Good Guy” Awards, When we call bad guys good

Hakkoryu Weekend

Today's link is 38 Beautiful, Abandoned places. :)

This weekend, I'll be spending quite a lot of time at the dojo. Folks have come in from all around the U.S. to train. Today's class was pretty great. I learned a lotl. I also was able to work out a few lingering issues I had around learning. That was cool. (That's always cool. Those sorts of issues get in the way of all sorts of learning--not just martial arts.) So, yeah. My brain is full and I'm tired. Tomorrow will be another long day as this is going to be a super busy weekend. I'll try to check in, but I'm not likely to be as consistant as I usually am due to the busy busy weekend. 


For today's spooky links, have a photo of an 1800s vampire killing kit. You know, for the van Helsing on the go. Also, a (NSFW) sample from American Grotesque, a collection of William Mortensen's photographic work. What I've seen so far is interesting, and as often happens with the grotesque, I'm both attracted and repelled. That's the point, after all. I may have to scrape up the money for the book. (I find art books inspiring.) Alas, I'm nowhere near Brooklyn where the exhibition is being held. I would've liked to see it. Perhaps Nancy Hightower will go and give a report?

I've been watching The Witches of East End and have reached episode 8 in the first season.

It's no secret that I'm super picky when it comes to depictions of witches. (Don't talk to me about Wicked or The Witches of Eastwick. I hate both. And yes, I gave them a shot, and I read the novels first.) First, I'm a Feminist. Women with power are often depicted as crazy, evil, moody, vain, over-sexed, selfish... so much more often than they are depicted with positive leadership aspects when in power.[1] Second, Paganism has been vilified for centuries, and to this day practitioners suffer abuses from the ignorant.[2] It's why, while I adore Halloween, I have so many mixed feelings about it. Anyway, I don't often get this far in this type of series. The feeling I get from it is one part Practical Magic (the movie) and one part Sleepy Hollow (the TV series.) It smells of cheese a bit. I won't lie. There's some sex too, but it's Lifetime, and they don't go off the rails with the naked like HBO. It doesn't hurt that I like Julia Ormond. So, I'll say so far so good.

That reminds me. I need to dig up my copy of Practical Magic, the novel. I love Alice Hoffman for the same reasons I love Francesca Lia Block. The prose and the atmosphere. OMG, so gorgeous.

Meanwhile, in another part of the forest... this morning I got the good news that my flash fiction piece from Ann & Jeff VanderMeer's anthology, Last Drink Bird Head, will be reprinted in the World Fantasy Con anthology. My first reprint! Yayayayyay! The funny thing is that when I first opened the email and read the first lines I was so sure it was a rejection that I had to reread it three times. Obviously, I've been feeling a bit down lately. No reason. It happens. I suspect I can stop with that now. (Well, I could've not started, but hey...) Am working on finishing Blackthorne. I had the first half or so already written before I decided that Cold Iron needed to happen first. I wonder how often that happens with other writers? I tend to write something, get interested in a character's back story, and then the story evolves. It's backwords, logically. It happens to me quite a bit.
[1] Whereas, men with super powers are far more often represented in a positive light. Even my writer-hero Josh Weden messes that one up. No. I didn't like what he did with witchcraft.
[2] A friend who is Pagan told me that the reason she wasn't 'out' was because "This may not be the burning times, but it is most certainly the firing times." Doubt that? When have you ever seen a Pagan cop wear a pentacle in public--other than their badge?


This morning's link is from my good friend, Serret. It's The Haunted Mansion Collection on the Disney website. I've never been to Disney (World or Land.) But I've always wanted to go and ride the Haunted Mansion ride. Always. One day, I will. [sigh] That said, I so want those place mats. And the candle things. And the mugs. And a couple of t-shirts. [sigh]

Got a weird private message from someone regarding his fiction writing first thing this morning. It felt creepy and awkward. Am debating whether or not to say something. Real networking is a natural (and gradual) progression as it is in real life. It's about relationships. Therefore, it's an investment in time because relationships involve a level of trust. Trust requires time. In my experience, *that's* what networking is. It's not a mindless game where you rack up a certain number of 'followers' in order to win. Win what? Who cares? I can write a number on a piece of paper, and it means as much. This constant feeling that strangers want something (like being published or famous[1]) I can't give them bugs me. I'm sure I'm not the only one. Sometimes I feel like I'd jettison the whole social network thing, if I could. However, I do enjoy interacting with friends and professional acquaintences. (It's difficult to keep up when you only see one another at a con once a year.) I love cons and the people I've met at them. I have fun talking with people who've read my work. That (like SF conventions) is part of my job, after all. Also? I'm great if someone decides to follow me because they have questions about the reality of publishing. (Not the bullcrap that so often gets spread around by those who haven't been professionally published nor have actually worked within professional publishing circles.) It's also cool to hang around because a)we've met in real life or b)I've said something online that interests you. I'm not all about the ego boost. That's also bull crap.

But people who follow just for the sake of getting a follow-back, or who only use social networks for "marketing" are people I don't want to associate with. Frankly, no one wants to feel used. You know?

Er... good morning! :)
[1] Hell, I'm not famous nor am I in the "fame" business. How could I make you famous?

Spooky, Dizzy, and Sick--Three of of Snow White's Less Pleasant Roomies

Today's Halloween link is from Ghost Diaries and is a set of old, creepy photographs. I can't help it. I love those things. I also can't help but wonder what the context was for some of them. (Like that first one.) Not all of them were intended for Halloween, or so it seems to me. Funny how much information gets lost so fast. You know? It's one of the things I ran into when asking relatives about family photos. It's also one of the reasons I love history. It has an element of mystery.

Speaking of, Cherie Priest's Maplecroft. You should buy it and read it. NOW. Hey, 'tis the season.

Soooo, yesterday I got slammed with a bout of vertigo and body aches. It's something Dane had a week or so ago, and it passed within a couple of days. I didn't expect to come down with this. I usually don't because Dane is actually more susceptable to illness than I am--normally, but hey, sometimes you run out of luck. I know I'm bad off because just I tried to brew the same coffee grounds twice--the second time, after I'd already poured my first cup of coffee. Yeah. Brain is sooo not braining. Thus, today, I'm taking it easy. I've a busy weekend ahead with family things and a martial arts workshop. I'm planning on a lot of rest today. I'm not sure about how much writing I'll get done, but I'm going to give it a shot. I want to finish Blackthorne and get it turned in early, or at least try. I'm 100,000 words in which in this series seems to mean just a bit past the halfway point. (Oh, big fat fantasy. Heh.) Every novel has its process, and it's best to go with that, letting it be what its going to be. When I struggle against the story's natural inclination I end up stuck. Editing can always happen afterward. (And does.) But in order for editing to happen words have to be on the page in the first place. I just might be doing so while laying on the sofa rather than at the standing desk. Nyah.

Feminist Monday

Today's spooky link is a link on NPR regarding the discussions around the World Fantasy Award which is a stylised bust of H.P. Lovecraft. My opinion is that it should be changed. I don't actually have an opinion as to what new shape the award statue should take. I don't honestly care--so long as it isn't a bust of a known racist (very, very racist) and misogynist. Speaking for myself, I don't care for Lovecraft. I always found his work to be tedious, over-written, and depressing. (Note I haven't used the word "scary.") Mind you, I do love quite a few works set in his world or works that borrow from his ideas. (For example, Charlie Stross's Laundry Files series is one of my favorites. Also, William Browning Spenser's Resume with Monsters is great. I adore Cherie Priest's Maplecroft too. But Lovecraft? I just can't. I tried. Meh.) That said, let's change that thing to something less offensive and controversial. Okay? It's not that difficult. It's not going to hurt anything nor does it take away from certain people's love of the author. I just don't see what the big damned deal is. Change it.

Today's video:

Nior as a genre isn't exactly a hotbed of Feminism, is it?

Now onto today's links.

That just makes me cry.

Entertainment/Literary: How to Fence--Things I Learned in YA (Because I like it.) The Navel-Gazer’s Guide to the Galaxy, Too long for Twitter: I used to be a “strong female character” (Yep. That used to be me too.) New exhibit celebrates women SiFi, horror writers (Dear Washington Times, it's spelled SciFi or SF. Dear SyFy channel, F-Off. Thanks, Me.) Tilda Moments Learn the rules so you can break them properly. (Which is exactly how I feel. Tilda Swinton ROCKS.) New super hero game for kids--well male kids, anyway. Thanks, DC. Oh, and DAVID FINCH DOESN'T WANT TO CALL WONDER WOMAN THE F-WORD AND OTHER QUOTES FROM A BIZARRE INTERVIEW WITH MEREDITH AND DAVID FINCH [insert eyeroll here][1] For those interested in keeping track of DC's latest sexist and racist errors, they make a website for that.[2] And someone else points out the problem with a certain SF trope. [cough], Author Stephanie Burgis on Talking About Chronic Illness, as a Reader and as a Writer, THE CARCOSA INTERVIEW: BRANDON THOMAS, No, I Don’t Want To Learn How To Love Criticism, Thanks,

General: Cissexism and Cis Privilege Revisited - Part 1: Who Exactly Does “Cis” Refer To? Long, complicated article. I'm still sussing it. I Demand Pocket Equality Yes. Pockets. We need them. Forty Portraits in Forty Years, Target's Girl Clothing Problem (I have to say I have noticed how sexualized pre-teen girl clothing has become lately. And I don't even have kids.) Hello America, It's Me, Colorado, Explainer: Why do Muslim women wear a burka, niqab or hijab?, Kenau Hasselaar amassed an army of 300 women to fight the invading Spanish in 1572. You never heard of her.

Trigger Warning: Revenge Porn Is Malicious and Reprehensible. But Should It Be a Crime? Yes. Yes, it should.
[1] Although, I don't care for Wonder Woman and I don't consider her to be Feminist either, but that's because I'm far too familiar with her real story and her creator's beliefs and the symbology involved. YMMV.
[2] Strangely, I've an urge to see a tree growing on top of DC's building. Is that what American construction companies do when they've finished a project with no injuries?

The Lego Movie and Certain SF/F Tropes

Today's Halloween link is about Packing Tape Ghosts. The article title is inaccurate. It doesn't show you how to make them. A link contained in the article does this. However, I liked to this article because it has some great photos of the result. Pretty neat, huh?

So, last night Dane and I finally watched The Lego Movie. Let me just start by saying that there are many things I enjoyed about the film. However, there are things that disappointed me about the film too. On the surface, it's a silly film that takes a shot at the type of grown man with a corporate job that owns an entire basement filled with expensive Lego playsets. (Strangely, I'm pretty sure this is a huge part of their market.[1]) Mainly, the intent of the film's message is "Hey, we provide instructions for these things. Sure. It's okay to follow those directions. But it's also okay to build whatever you want with them--particularly if you're a boy."[2] This film is charming. It's funny. It's also smart and self-aware to a point.

And I have to say it's this half-ass self-awareness that makes the film disappointing to me. Why? Because while it spends a great deal of time poking at the corporate clone ideal and the need for creative freedom, it totally forgets to check the plot from a gendered perspective. So, let's do this thing. Here's the plot as your average white male would see it: "Your average lonely Joe (actually Emmet Brickowski) with nothing special about him is mistaken for The Special--a hero responsible for saving the world from the Evil Bad--Mr.Business. He begins his journey by falling down a hole dug by the super-competant female lead, Wyldstyle, and then manages to glue himself to the Piece of Resistance. (The object which will indicate the person who will save the world as fortold by the wizard Virtruvius.) He falls in love with the female lead, taking her away from Batman, and saves the world (and himself) when he finally takes a chance on being creative himself. Oh, and little sisters are a pain." [This is followed by a bit I won't go into due to spoilers.] Happy Ending. [confetti] Wheee! Fun movie! Right, honey?

And now, the movie I saw. "Your average lonely Joe with nothing special about him in that he can't even THINK for himself is mistaken for The Special--a hero responsible for saving the world from the Evil Bad--Mr.Business. He begins his journey by falling down a hole dug by the super-competant female lead who has trained her entire life to be great at what she does (basically, everything.) She calls herself Wyldstyle. Wyldstyle wants to be The Special--only she isn't because FEMALE. This in spite of doing absolutely EVERYTHING better than Emmet, including thinking. The Special Prophecy was created by the Magical Black Man, Virtruvius[3]. Wyldstyle also (in spite of being extra-competant at everything) fails to notice that Batman is kind of a jerk. So, instead of sticking with Batman (good) she goes with Emmet--a stupid, lumpy guy with the dumb ideas that she has had to teach and who still can't think his way out of a paper bag. And hey, he doesn't even have to train for very long to be better than her. He doesn't even have to try. He just has to show up with The Piece of Resistance glued to his back. Oh, and by the way, Wyldstyle isn't even who she really is. That's just a silly role she plays because INSECURE/IMPOSTER SYNDROME. She's really just 'Lucy.' Wyldstyle inexplicably finds Emmet attractive. Now that he's instantly better than her without any work whatsoever, Emmet saves the world when he tries to be creative just this once. Oh, and little girls suck." The End.

This led to a rather interesting discussion with Dane, starting with "Wow. You didn't even make it fifteen seconds into the end credits on that one. I'm starting to worry about you. You're over-thinking it."[5] and ending with "Oh, huh. You have a valid point." To his credit, he did this super fast.[4] I love my husband. I'm not entirely sure I'd have been able to conduct as fast a cognative 180 when my privilidge bubble got thumped like that. This is one of the things about Dane I adore. He listens--particularly when it's important--and he learns. The interesting thing was that I honestly wasn't angry (even though he thought I was) until he called my perception to question. It was then I had to count to ten.

That said, I understand that the writers were merely mashing various SF/F tropes together to come up with that plot. They borrowed from Star Wars, Batman, The Lord of the Rings, and The Matrix. They did so in a way that wasn't lazy, up to a point. They questioned everything except two things: culturally instituted racism and mysogyny. This is why you can't just place POC actors in roles and not think about the larger picture it presents. You need to make certain adjustments.[6] This is why whenever I hear someone say, "I don't see color." or "I don't see gender." that basically tells me that they largely do not perceive the world as it is beyond themselves. It says to me they don't think beyond the white male default setting. It says they don't want to be blamed for not being comfortable thinking outside themselves. Hey, I get it. That shit is difficult. It's difficult for me too. I'm still uncomfortable. I may always be, but real learning happens when you're uncomfortable. It's how you stretch yourself.

Largely, I think the reason why the "Accomplished woman takes on newbie male as apprentice and then overnight he's so much better than her through the magic of being white and male." trope bugs me so much is because I've just spent seven years training newbie writers. Mind you, I enjoy teaching. I honestly do. But what I don't enjoy? All those times that male students have walked up to me and told me that they were going to have exactly the same career I have in less time and with far less work. In fact, they're better writers than I am already as of the end of class. Hey, probably even before class! That's like walking into someone's dojo and declaring that the twenty or thirty years the master studied is meaningless. You're the Kwisatz Haderach. Fifteen minutes or even eight hours of serious study is all you need. Here's a clue for you: no one's career path is exactly the same. You may be good. Hell, you may be naturally great. (In all the cases of individuals who said this to me, I never saw evidence of GREAT.) And hey, it's not like it's that hard to be better than me. I don't think of myself as some great writer. It's possible. However, talent only gets you so far. Talent doesn't mean you don't have to put any effort or study into your chosen vocation.

Yeah. That's a button. I admit it. Still, it's one of the stupidest tropes in SF/F and it needs to DIE.
[1] I know. I own the Haunted House one. I love that thing, but I'm not buying another. Also, I built it to spec because that's what I wanted. I'm not ever taking it apart either. For me, that thing is the dollhouse I always wanted and never got. That's it. Unless they start manufacturing tons of glow in the dark stuff, that's probably the extent of my Lego market potential.
[2] If you're a girl, you'll be a threat, AND you'll be using a different set of bricks that don't inter-link with the main sets depicted in this film. Since Lego is having some gender issues, this sticks up like a Duplo brick in a Lego set for me.
[3] Who is literally a Magical Black Man.
[4] Much like when I threw him a fast ball before we got married by refusing to change my name.
[5] My response was to wait for a second to catch my anger and then calmly say, "No. I'm not over-thinking it. I'm a writer. A professional writer. Story is what I do." His reply was then, "Oh, right. I'm a professional in the game industry. I can't play a game without spotting twenty bugs. Got it."
[6] Having more than one black actor play a role in the main group would've been a good start.

Dishonored, Games, and Revenge

Today's October-esque link is a poison dress. That is, a Victorian dress dyed apple-green with arsenic and copper. The first time I came across the concept of poisoning a victim via a dress was in one of the films about Elizabeth the First. (In the film, the dress is a gift from a Spanish nobleperson. Luckily for Queen Bess, one of her Ladies in Waiting couldn't wait. She 'borrowed' the dress and was poisoned by it. Ah, skin-contact poison.) Mind you, the apple-green dress above wasn't intended to be poisonous. Apparently, the color green became all the rage--the brighter the better. The article says that the worst the wearers of such garments reported was a rash. However, those who made such articles of clothing often died from frequent exposure to arsenic--in much the same way that hatters went mad due to mercury exposure. Neat, though. Right?

In other news, I've been playing the hell out of the platform version of Dishonored. I like the play-style. It has much in common with Bioshock.[1] I also appreciate the way the game is weighted toward more sneaky non-violent problem solving being the ideal solution to problems. You can muscle your way through the game with the "shoot first, ask questions later" attitude that most FPS games tend toward. However, you'll make your life a lot more difficult if you do--a whole lot more difficult. I like that. I also like that while the game's subtitle is "Revenge Solves Everything" I get the feeling that this is sarcasm. In any case, I chose to play the game, not because I want revenge for my character, but because I want to see the rightful heir on the throne. The game's mechanics and dialog don't remove this choice from me. I like that too. Unfortunately, there is no option to play as a female. It's the only thing I hate about the game. However, since this is a first person game and the camera doesn't stray from the POV of the PC, it's easy to forget you're walking around in a male body for the most part. [shrug] In any case, I'm enjoying the game. It's worthy of the praise it got, and I suspect I'm reaching the end. Because my wonderful husband is always looking for computer games I'll play, he's suggested The Shadow of Mordor with a certain amount of caution. First, he knows I'm a huge Tolkien fan. (Yes, I even have the tattoo.[2]) Second, he knows my feelings about glorifying revenge. Those feelings are that it is totally not cool. I'm concerned (as is he) that the game's entire combat system hinges on revenge. That, my friends, is not a positive thing. Period. Is it creative? Sure. Clever? Yep. Unique? You betcha. Going by the review I read, it effectively manages to hook the player emotionally in a way that no previous game has. But is this a good thing? Fuck no.

The more I delve into computer games the more I keep seeing revenge used as motivation for what  too often passes for plot. This is so much the case that every single time I hear a character declare "[fill in the blank bad guy] killed my family/wife!" I roll my eyes and check an urge to chuck the controller across the room. Talk about lazy writing. Geez. In fact, this happens so much I have to wonder about the emotional development of gamers if this is their primary and popular reason for interacting with an imaginary world. That's not healthy, folks. That's messed up, and I think it's long past time we questioned that.
[1] Bioshock remains the only game that I've ever played all the way through. BTW, I feel that Snowpiercer has much in common with Bioshock as well. Both have an Ayn Randian "hero" who comes up with an impractical plan to resolve the world's ills.
[2] And yes, I'm aware of the racial problems with Tolkien's work. I won't excuse it. There is no excuse for making Orcs the only PoCs in the entire world. There's also no excuse for having three female characters of any substance in the entire work who have walk on roles for a couple of pages, max. Still, Galadriel and Eowyn are my favorite characters. That "I am not a man!" schtick with the Witch King? Holy crap, that made my life. 

Have Some Random Things

Today's October link is for Halloween prep. Feminist Halloween costume ideas.

Well, here we are Oct. 2. The trees around here are dropping leaves like mad. My neighborhood used to be a pecan orchard. That's pretty much all the old growth trees we have--other than the occassional Live Oak. Pecans don't do anything in the fall but turn a gunky half-yellow and then a grey-brown as the leaves are released. So, we get all of the mess and none of the fun fall colors. Still, it's kind of fun running through piles of leaves. (Yes, I still do that.) My garden is limping to the summer finish line. The pumpkins, cantalope, radishes and sunflower didn't make it. So, I'll be buying pumpkin again. That's okay. At least the mint did. Now that the plants aren't being brutalized by the sun, the aphids are retreating. I'm not sure if the sun weakens the plants and makes them easy targets or if the triple digit heat excites the aphids into a population boom the likes of which would put the Baby Boom to shame. The roses are loving the coffee grounds I dump on them. I have to say, it's the least attractive rose bush I've ever seen, but that sucker is definitely draught resistant. It gave the aphids and the heavy duty summer sun the middle finger and kept on keeping on. It blooms, even. Given that it's my first rose plant, I feel pretty good about that.[1]

On the writing front, my short novella (Second Verse, Same as the First) is at it's first market. I'm trying not to think about it. At the same time, they asked for a longer story (20,000-40,000 words.) That's a first. So, my brain has been processing what to do about that. I've already a great Alternate History/Urban Fantasy story in mind--set in 1970s America. It'll be one of those quiet-on-the-magic and heavy on the history stories like Of Blood and Honey was. I'm happy about coming up with something so fast. Usually, I just sit there with my mouth hanging open like an idiot. You know? So, that's progress. I no longer fear the shorter formats.

And now, some links I've been hording [cough]... er... gathering on racism, the environment, health/food, American education, and the American economy.

'Dear White Racists' is One of the Best Explanations of White Privilege You Will Likely Ever Read, Earth has lost half of its wildlife in the past 40 years, says WWF (that's scary,) Reason Behind Increasing Food Allergies Discovered (now, keep in mind this is the result of only 20% of antibiotic usage. 80% of the market is comprised of factory farms,) Colorado students walk out to protest conservative ‘censorship’ of AP history, It's Never Been a Better Time to Be Rich, Inside the Koch Brothers' Toxic Empire, Zero Percent Water, The Hidden TRUTH About Comic Book Convention Earnings: For Creators, Have Comic Book Conventions JUMPED THE SHARK? (i'm not sure how i feel about this one. for a start, i've never gone to a convention thinking i'll make money. this is why i never 'buy' a table. this is why i don't bother bringing copies of my books. this is what book stalls are for. i'm there to meet fans, talk to them, and sign books or whathaveyou. that's promotion/marketing. there isn't a direct correlation to profit. that's as thought out as the underpants gnomes business model: 1)steal underpants 2)? 3)profit. myself, i've always been a touch disturbed by the for profit model of big comic conventions. i have to wonder where the money is going and to whom? and upon whose backs that money is being made off of? because big comic book cons still use the volunteer method of obtaining labor.) Meeting My Protagonist, A new low in anti-Muslim American bias, This Hilarious Key & Peele Sketch Reveals Alien Invaders' Only Weakness, Three troubling things exposed by the Ferguson police shooting of Michael Brown, Chart of the Day: The Rich Are Getting Richer, The Poor Are..., The Forsaken: A Rising Number of Homeless Gay Teens Are Being Cast Out by Religious Families, Saving Us From Ourselves: The Anti-Clickbait Movement, Duke's AAAS Faculty Teach Ferguson
[1] Did I mention I used to kill everything? I've been a plant serial killer since forever. Oh, my empty pot collection! I wouldn't be surprized if there were wanted posters in plantworld featuring my face. I am getting better, however.

OMG! October is HERE!

Happy October, y'all! October is my favorite month.[1] Every year I try to think about something new to do to celebrate. Every year, I kind of fail but this year I think I'll keep it simple and try to post something October-worthy (whatever I think that might be) every day. Today, this is going to be a link to Turner Classic Movie's 24 Hours of Horror line-up. Here's what they have in store for us this year. Looks pretty damned cool. I'm going to have to Bogart the 2nd DVR on Halloween, it looks like.

Had lunch with my good friend Bud Simons today. We discussed my column on Skiffy and Fanty and how I was planning on examining classic SF, Fantasy, and Horror films from a Feminist perspective. I asked him for a list of films he thought I should include, and I'm looking forward to seeing that list. Again, I'm not looking for Feminist films. I'm looking for classic genre films. I'm considering organizing my viewing in order of release. My only qualm about that is what happens if I miss a film? I want the freedom to go back and view it. I don't think that will be a problem per se. At the same time, I may want to work in some themed films. For instance, I really want to write about Village of the Damned and The Bad Seed during October. We'll see.

Speaking of... someone synced a few scenes from Village of the Damned to the Matrix's Clubbed to Death. I kind of love it, but then I kind of love Clubbed to Death. It's a great song.

[1] I married Dane on October 31st. Why, yes. I'm a Goth. Your point is...? :)