Some people consider the number of fans, friends, or followers on their social media pages to be something of a merit badge. Writers especially can feel insecure and vulnerable about the number of followers they have—or the lack thereof.
We compare the number of fans we have the other writers’; we agonize about how we’re going to achieve a greater number of fans and followers; we stress, and strategize, and bang our heads against the wall.
A List of “Men’s Rights” Issues That Feminism Is Already Working On
Feminists do not want you to lose custody of your children. The assumption that women are naturally better caregivers is part of patriarchy.
Feminists do not like commercials in which bumbling dads mess up the laundry and competent wives have to bustle in and fix it. The assumption that women are naturally better housekeepers is part of patriarchy.
Feminists do not want you to have to make alimony payments. Alimony is set up to combat the fact that women have been historically expected to prioritize domestic duties over professional goals, thus minimizing their earning potential if their “traditional” marriages end. The assumption that wives should make babies instead of money is part of patriarchy.
Feminists do not want anyone to get raped in prison. Permissiveness and jokes about prison rape are part of rape culture, which is part of patriarchy.
Feminists do not want anyone to be falsely accused of rape. False rape accusations discredit rape victims, which reinforces rape culture, which is part of patriarchy.
Feminists do not want you to be lonely and we do not hate “nice guys.” The idea that certain people are inherently more valuable than other people because of superficial physical attributes is part of patriarchy.
Feminists do not want you to have to pay for dinner. We want the opportunity to achieve financial success on par with men in any field we choose (and are qualified for), and the fact that we currently don’t is part of patriarchy. The idea that men should coddle and provide for women, and/or purchase their affections in romantic contexts, is condescending and damaging and part of patriarchy.
Feminists do not want you to be maimed or killed in industrial accidents, or toil in coal mines while we do cushy secretarial work and various yarn-themed activities. The fact that women have long been shut out of dangerous industrial jobs (by men, by the way) is part of patriarchy.
Feminists do not want you to commit suicide. Any pressures and expectations that lower the quality of life of any gender are part of patriarchy. The fact that depression is characterized as an effeminate weakness, making men less likely to seek treatment, is part of patriarchy.
Feminists do not want you to be viewed with suspicion when you take your child to the park (men frequently insist that this is a serious issue, so I will take them at their word). The assumption that men are insatiable sexual animals, combined with the idea that it’s unnatural for men to care for children, is part of patriarchy.
Feminists do not want you to be drafted and then die in a war while we stay home and iron stuff. The idea that women are too weak to fight or too delicate to function in a military setting is part of patriarchy.
Feminists do not want women to escape prosecution on legitimate domestic violence charges, nor do we want men to be ridiculed for being raped or abused. The idea that women are naturally gentle and compliant and that victimhood is inherently feminine is part of patriarchy.
Feminists hate patriarchy. We do not hate you.
If you really care about those issues as passionately as you say you do, you should be thanking feminists, because feminism is a social movement actively dedicated to dismantling every single one of them. The fact that you blame feminists—your allies—for problems against which they have been struggling for decades suggests that supporting men isn’t nearly as important to you as resenting women. We care about your problems a lot. Could you try caring about ours?
Excerpt from If I Admit That Hating Men is a Thing, Will You Stop Turning it Into a Self-fulfilling Prophecy?, by Lindy West (via lilac-time)
“Part of the racialized sexism wants everyone to think that a 15-year old Mexican is not a girl, she’s a woman. We know she’s a girl. We can never emphasize this enough, because this is the fate of colored girls globally right now: the denial of their girlhood, the denial of their childhood, and the constant state of risk and danger they are living in.”—bell hooks, Homegrown: Engaged Cultural Criticism (via fajazo)
“Fantasy is a natural human activity. It certainly does not destroy or even insult Reason; and it does not either blunt the appetite for, nor obscure the perception of, scientific verity. On the contrary. The keener and the clearer is the reason, the better fantasy will it make. If men were ever in a state in which they did not want to know or could not perceive truth (facts or evidence), then Fantasy would languish until they were cured. If they ever get into that state (it would not seem at all impossible), Fantasy will perish, and become Morbid Delusion.”—J. R. R. Tolkien, “On Fairy Tales” (excerpted here)
"When I was about 20 years old, I met an old pastor’s wife who told me that when she was young and had her first child, she didn’t believe in striking children, although spanking kids with a switch pulled from a tree was standard punishment at the time. But one day, when her son was four or five, he did something that she felt warranted a spanking–the first in his life. She told him that he would have to go outside himself and find a switch for her to hit him with.
The boy was gone a long time. And when he came back in, he was crying. He said to her, “Mama, I couldn’t find a switch, but here’s a rock that you can throw at me.”
All of a sudden the mother understood how the situation felt from the child’s point of view: that if my mother wants to hurt me, then it makes no difference what she does it with; she might as well do it with a stone.
And the mother took the boy into her lap and they both cried. Then she laid the rock on a shelf in the kitchen to remind herself forever: never violence. And that is something I think everyone should keep in mind. Because if violence begins in the nursery one can raise children into violence.”
“Nobody really cares about your accomplishments. That’s why you need to set your own goals and do it for yourself. Forget what makes your parents proud or what your friends like, what is it that makes you like yourself?”—My Psych teacher (via awakenedvibrations)
Maggie Quinn: Girl Vs. Evil Trilogy - Rosemary Clement-Moore
Nzingha: Warrior Queen of Matamba- Patricia C. McKissack
Disney Girls Series - Gabrielle Charbonnet (if you pretend this series doesn’t exist I will punch you in the throat)
Young Wizards Series - Diane Duane
Harry Potter Series- JK Rowling
Unicorns of Balinor - Mary Stanton
Cathy’s BookTrilogy- Sean Stewart
Avalon High AND/OR Princess Diaries Series - Meg Cabot
Kiki Strike & the Irregulars Series- Kirsten Miller
(Runners up: Who’s Your Daddy? - Lynda Sandoval, Daughters of the Moon Series - Lynne Ewing,His Dark Materials Trilogy - Phillip Paulman,Perfect Shot - Debbie Rigaud, Chasing Vermeer - Blue Balliett, Camp Half-Blood Chronices - Rick Riordan, Cinder - Marissa Meyer, Circle of Magic Series - Tamora Pierce.)
Wind in the Willows- Kenneth Graham
The Complete Sherlock Holmes- Sir Arthur Conan Doyle
The Gunslinger (Dark Tower Series) - Stephen King
In The Land Of The Mic Macs - Mary Alma Dillman
To Kill A Mockingbird - Harper Lee
Ranks of Bronze - David Drake
A Is For Alibi - Sue Grafton (along with most of the other books in the Alphabet Crime Series)
Hawkwind - Adrian Drake
Hitchhiker’s Guide To The Galaxy - Douglas Adams
Dirk Gentley’s Holistic Detective Agency - Douglas Adams
(A few also rans: Watership Down - Richard Adams; The Dresden Files Series - Jim Butcher; The Stand - Stephen King; Handmaid’s Tale - Margaret Atwood; Sphere - Michael Crichton; Jurassic Park - Michael Crichton; A Game Of Thrones - George R. R. Martin; The Hobbit - J. R. R. Tolkien; Lord of the Rings - J. R. R. Tolkien; The Sword of Shannara - Terry Brooks)
“I have my own theories about why people want to claim to be Indian. I think people are desperately looking for a sense of place and connection. As human beings, we need to have a connection to the earth, to place and ultimately to each other. Unfortunately, the only way some folks know how to find or get something is to buy it and own it as quickly as possible. Since Indians are widely believed to have an almost magical connection with nature, why not just claim to be Indian and legitimize the claim by purchasing a DNA test? It’s silly and kind of sad.”—
“There’s a poisonous double standard in our society which says that it’s reverse-sexist and wrong for women to feel threatened by creepy-awkward male behaviour because our fear implies that we hold the negative, stereotypical view that All Men Are Predators, but that if we’re raped or sexually assaulted by any man with whom we’ve had prior social interaction – and particularly if he’s expressed some sexual or romantic interest in us during that time – it’s reasonable for observers to ask what precautions we took to prevent the assault from happening, or to suggest that we maybe led the guy on by not stating our feelings plainly. The result is a situation where women are punished if we reject, avoid or identify creepy men, and then told it’s our fault if we’re assaulted by someone we plainly ought to have rejected, avoided, identified.”—The Creepiness Question (via birdsy-purplefishes)
Over the past decade (more, really), I’ve tried very hard to distance myself from reading negative articles in the morning. These are articles that don’t paint thing necessarily in a negative light, but have a resultant negative aspect to them. This morning, for example, there were two things I read on my dash that have negative aspects to them.
One was innocent enough. The new Miss France was recently crowned and turns out she’s black. This prompted the usual garbage from the hate monger crowd, the kind that start sentences with “I’m not racist, but…” kind of things. Naturally, after saying “but” they would go onto say incredibly racist things. The story itself isn’t negative. New Miss France was crowned, she happens to be black. Not unlike the recent Miss America who happened to be Indian. Both those events brought out the large number of hateful comments to the fore. Fortunately, in both cases, they began as tweets and comments to articles. So with diligence, one could avoid them. However, such things usually get latched onto by the media. It’s a sensational part of media and sadly, it helps bring up ratings for news services.
The other example happens to be negative right in the article. A white woman was forced to admit that her boyfriend hit her and gave her a black eye, not a roving band of black youths playing a knockout game. The article’s title was pretty self explanatory.
In both those cases there was a lot of negativity, which is something I’ve tried to avoid in the mornings. Not always successful, one can imagine (obviously, considering I saw both those articles this morning). This goes back to when I was working as a morning news anchor for an FM radio station. I grew very tired of the times that stories were read on air that seemed to be nothing more than sensationalism. Where local news services were more interested in making a big issue out of a story when one didn’t need to be made at all.
While it’s important to hear some stories, one shouldn’t look for the “angle” in the story that pushes it over the top. Sometimes that angle is subtle enough that you don’t need to overblow something. Sadly, in both the examples I gave, that’s completely true. You didn’t have to dig very far to find the negative in either story.
“The purpose of life is not to be happy. It is to be useful, to be honorable, to be compassionate, to have it make some difference that you have lived and lived well.”—― Ralph Waldo Emerson (via thebeldam)
A pair of poem style writings that are part of the world building for the World of the Elves, based on the home world that Shani, Pania, Wren and Abisayo come from in The Adventures of Black Mask & Pale Rider.
Beyond this point
Beyond this point, the Fields of Blood Beyond this point, the graves of fallen soldiers Beyond this point, the final resting place of Valkyrie and Erinyes Beyond this point, the great battle fought Beyond this point, blood was shed Beyond this point, the City of Erinvale Beyond this point, the keepers of the dead reside Beyond this point, there are no men Beyond this point, only women were on the battle field Beyond this point, the war cries of women sounded out Beyond this point, no man uttered a word Beyond this point, no man shall speak unless spoken to Beyond this point, no man shall travel unless accompanied by a woman Beyond this point, no male Consolers are allowed to travel Beyond this point, men walk in the shadow of women Beyond this point, no man shall settle to make his home Beyond this point, you will respect those who fought this battle
A placard on the borders of the City of Erinvale, central Europa, world of the elves, where the Battle of Erinvale took place between the Valkyrie and the Erinyes. Of the five thousand Valkyrie and five thousand Erinyes soldiers, only Hildegaar, leader of the Valkyrie, and Triana, leader of the Erinyes, survived. Exhausted, they each ended the battle by dropping their weapons and weeping at what they had wrought. They called for Consolers to help tend to the dead, barring any and all men from entering the fields. Only women were allowed to assist. The city surrounds the massive graveyard, patrolled by Consolers of all cultures, and all only women. The City of Erinvale and the Fields of Blood stand as a memorial to the battle and the lives that were lost.
No man shall tell this tale
No man shall ask to read the Book of Erinvale No man shall enter the room that holds the book No man is allowed to hear the tale without a woman present No man shall repeat the story of the Battle of Erinvale Only a woman is allowed to tell the story Only a woman is allowed to read from the book Only a woman is allowed to enter the room that holds the book Only a woman is allowed to repeat the story of the Battle of Erinvale To have a man tell the story is to dishonour the soldiers of the fallen The Valkyrie and the Erinyes
A placard in the Great Library of Muhiran, Baty al-Hikma, named for her Earthly sister in Baghdad, Iraq. The placard sits outside a circular room where one book sits on a stone altar. The book tells the story of the Fields of Blood, the Battle of Erinvale, between the Valkyrie and the Erinyes.
I’ve been expanding and detailing the world of the elves that I made. The place where Shani, Pania, Wren and Abisayo come from. That world mirrors our own because the stories of the elves come from Earthly stories. The elves themselves will come from every background and culture. Just two of those cultures will be Norse and Greco Roman.
The Nordician elves are based on the Norse myths. One of those myths is about the Valkyries, the warrior women who would take those deserving in death to their final reward in Valhalla. In the world of the elves, based on the book Black Mask & Pale Rider, the Valkyries are shield maidens who protect the realm of Nordicia, one of the dozens of elven nations. They are made up of women from across the nation, who come together to protect their realm from all forms of evil and treachery. The Valkyrie, just like other Nordicians, are tall, stout women, trained for battle. Most have fair skin, but there are those who’s fore parents have migrated to Nordica from other lands. An example would be Petra Tigerclaw, whose parents were originally Yoruba. But because Petra was born in Nordicia, she grew as tall and strong as other Nordicians. Another example would be Frigg Elva Xanthe, second daughter to the king and queen of Strombru. Taken in by Heinrich and Hildegaar after Frigg Elva’s parents were killed by orcs, Frigg Elva is a Muharanian elf (Arabic). Like Petra, Frigg Elva has grown just as tall and strong as her sister, Avalona.
The Valkyries are ferocious fighters, and have a vow to never give quarter and fight to the last. Many are adept at healing magic and will use that to heal their comrades in battle so they will continue the fight. Others are adept at natural magic, turning the very land itself against their enemy.
Further south of Nordicia, on the edge of the vast Sea of Seven Bridges, rests the Greco-Roma Empire. They call themselves Myst Elves. With pure white hair and dusky blue skin, they are based loosely on the dark elves of Forgotten Realms. The Myst elf nation has a system of government that is similar to that of many city states in Ancient Greece, which is unique in the world of the elves. However, like Nordicia, the Myst nation has their own protectors; the Erinyes or the Furies as sometimes they are called.
The Furies, unlike the Valkyrie, are women warriors of vengeance. While they vow to protect the lands of the Myst elves, they are unpredictable. They seek also to meet out vengeance and wrath upon any who deserve it. Their armour and weapons are black with silver trim to match the likeness of their hair and skin. They fight in formation of the Greco-Roman ranks. Front lines carry shields and act as a defensive barrier to archers in the back. But when lines meet the enemy, they are ferocious. Expert at hand to hand combat and sword and shield, they are also adept at many of the darker magiks. The highest ranking officers of the Furies are necromancers, and often will raise the recently slain on the field of battle to join the fight with the remaining ranks. It doesn’t matter to them which bodies they use, though they have a particular glee when raising the body of a slain enemy, and turning them against their former allies. Lower ranks use a combination of evocation spells and illusions. The commonly used evocation is fire and ice based spells. Either burning or freezing their enemy as they cut a swath through the bodies with their swords.
Because the Furies are trained to meet out vengeance, even the populace of the Myst nation is not safe from them. Should someone in one of the many cities of the Empire become corrupt and deal out ill will towards one or many others, it is very likely they will be visited upon by a pair of Furies. The end result, it is said is a fate worse than death. As such, it is believed that the government made it law to have two Furies as the personal body guards to the Emperor. To protect him, but also to ensure that his decisions are met with wisdom and for the best of the populace. Should he stray from that, he would surely meet death at the hands of his own body guards.
These are a couple of the ideas for world building that I’m working on, as I’m planning on writing a series of short stories about this world of the elves.
“I think there’s a lot to be said for the JudeoChristian idea of absolute good and evil. But sometimes it’s just easier to believe, as the ancient Greeks did, that this universe is being run by drunken, skirt-chasing, egotistical morons.”—
Aisha Tyler:Great science fiction, though – great science fiction is about ideas.
Levar Burton:Yes it is.
Aisha Tyler:Lazy science fiction is about, like, aliens and sex with purple girls.
Levar Burton:And explosions.
Aisha Tyler:Yes, and things blowing up and fighting. But GREAT science fiction is about ideas, it's about the nature of humanity and who we are and our place in the universe.
Levar Burton:And why we're here, right. Our place in the universe. And that's Gene's vision. That's Gene Roddenberry. That's why I have always been a fan of Star Trek, and always will be a fan of Star Trek. Gene's vision is so strong.
“Today, as you see whitewashed images of a post-prison, unarmed, grandfatherly Mandela, please remember that he was someone who had the pride and courage to take up arms against his oppressor. Mandela fought in a guerilla war against white supremacy in South Africa, as did many others all across the world. Our own CIA alerted the SA authorities to Mandela’s location, which is what led to his 27 years behind bars and the medical condition which felled him today. Our government was responsible for that crime, and still holds our own anti-apartheid militants behind bars. So when you see Obama crying his crocodile tears later today remember that he would imprison a modern Mandela, that he arms the apartheid government of Israel, that he refuses to pardon those who fought against the corporations propping up the South African government here in the US, and that he has done everything he can to crush the kind of dissent that Mandela stood for.”—(via angry-hippo)