Monster Hunter Nation

Fisking the Latest Diversity in Sci-Fi Freak Out

This article popped up on Facebook the other day. The headline is click bait nonsense. The actual content tries to make a point but has to make some really silly assumptions to get to it. Then their solution is ass backwards.

http://www.theverge.com/2016/8/4/12374306/science-fiction-diversity-numbers-fireside-report

After reading this defeatist garbage I figured I needed to say something. This fisking is addressed toward the aspiring authors in the audience. You are trying to make it as a professional author. Lots of things are going to stand in your way. Don’t make up additional stupid new ones to hold you back.

As usual, the original will be in italics and my responses are in bold.

Science fiction publishing has a major race problem, new report shows

More than half of all science fiction magazines failed to publish fiction from black authors in 2015

By Andrew Liptak on August 4, 2016 11:33 am

Speculative fiction magazine Fireside Fiction has commissioned and released a report detailing an unwelcome revelation: speculative fiction magazines and online fiction sites are failing to publish stories by black writers.

OF THE 2,039 SHORT STORIES PUBLISHED IN 2015, ONLY 38 WERE PUBLISHED BY BLACK AUTHORS

Released last week, the report is damning: of the 2,039 short stories published last year across 63 magazines, only 38 were published by black authors. Cecily Kane, who authored the report along with Weston Allen, compiled the statistics that they worked from. While they admit that their methodology has some flaws — they largely worked from self-reported information from the magazines — they believe that the data is largely correct after consulting with an actuary. Sixty percent of the magazines listed had not published a single story by a black science fiction author in 2015, while the highest publication percentage is only 25 percent. The report compared these numbers against the US census, and found that there’s a wide gap between the population and those being published. 

Interesting. Sounds pretty horrible, right?

I originally saw this article on author Chris Nuttal’s page, and in the resulting discussion a bunch of authors went through the many possible flaws in this survey (including some black authors who pointed out they never put their race on a query letter). Chris goes into it in detail here https://chrishanger.wordpress.com/2016/08/06/race-fail-again/

Basically, there were supposedly 38 stories published by black authors in sci-fi magazines (a plodding dinosaur medium, but I’ll get to that) but how many stories were submitted by black authors? Keep in mind the regular publishing industry has something like a 99.9% rejection rate. I couldn’t tell you the actual rejection rate for magazines, because I didn’t come into the business that way, but I’m sure it is pretty cut throat too.

So without that key piece of info, who knows?  If there were a hundred thousand submissions from whites, and a hundred from blacks, then that’s a kick ass ratio, but they conveniently leave that bit out, but hey, let’s hurry, assume the system is rigged, impossible, and have a giant freak out about racism, because getting published isn’t hard enough already.

Fireside Fictionnotes that the possibility for this to be random chance is smaller than that of winning the New Jersey Pick Six Lottery.

If fifty million black authors submitted stories, he’d have a point. Without comparative rejection rates those numbers are meaningless.

But hang on. I’m going to go in a different direction. Let’s go ahead and assume this is legit.

No. Really.

I know there is bias in publishing. Some unconscious, as in you deviate too far from their groupthink monoculture, and they wouldn’t read that trash, and only they know what sells. And some conscious, as in you didn’t kiss sufficient ass, or they just plain hate your guts.

There is no shortage of stuck up, snooty gatekeeper editors. So for this fisk, let’s assume that they are unfairly biased against black authors too.

Ironically, if there is a bias against black authors, just keep in mind that the vast majority of the publishing industry works out of ultra-liberal Manhattan, and is overwhelmingly run by Caring Liberals Who Are Never Racist EVAR, and by golly, they’ll tell you so.

How politically slanted is this business? Check this out. Go down and click on Publishing. http://verdantlabs.com/politics_of_professions/  Book Publishing is so overwhelmingly left wing and my side so statistically insignificant, that we don’t show up on the diagram. You really want to see bias in the publishing industry, let them know you campaigned for George Bush!

It is entirely plausible that some editors might be biased against black authors. Hell, lots of them are biased against anybody who didn’t drive their Prius with a Berkley Alumni sticker on it to their Upper East Side organic farmers market and drum circle to pick up some non-GMO, cruelty free range free trade vegan tofu snacks for after the Bernie rally.

The question then becomes what do you as an author do about these biased gatekeepers? You’re in luck, my friends, because my people are used to their elitist bullshit and have learned how to work around them. I’ll get back to that later because there is still a lot of angsty fear mongering to fisk first.

While science fiction can be found across novels, television, and film, the short fiction market is a particularly important marketplace to consider. It publishes a relatively high level of content, and allows newer authors to break into the field with their own fiction.

Eh… Sort of. In reality the short fiction market is a good place to get started because it is easier to finish a 5,000 word piece than a 100,000 word novel. Shorts are good practice but the pay is awful. I’ve known some of the most prolific and successful short fiction authors alive, and they don’t make enough off of it to live on. Also of those 2,000 short stories, probably half of them were written by the same 100 or so, already popular/prolific short fiction writers, which will further skew the stats.

Successful authors such as Ken Liu, N.K. Jemisin, Charlie Jane Anders, and Paolo Bacigalupi each got their start writing shorter stories for a variety of magazines, which helped them as they began writing novels.

Yep. Good for them. Luckily for you there are a hundred ways to get into this business.

Short fiction also allows authors to experiment with form, style, and narratives which can have great impact on the field as a whole.

Uh huh. That sounds great and all, but it’s really kind of bullshit. Not the authors experimenting part. That’s cool. That’s how we learn. The “impact on the field” part, that there is some pretentious literati twaddle. Outside of a tiny circle jerk of critics, nobody cares. Your story probably isn’t got to blow any minds or shake the foundations of the world.  Just write your shit, and if it is entertaining and good enough, people will want to give you money for it.

Barriers for specific groups of people hurts the field as a whole by blocking new voices and styles from reaching a wider audience.

Funny, when I said that same thing years ago I was the bad guy. 🙂

Fireside’s study focused specifically on black science authors, rather than the wider spectrum of authors of color. Kane noted, “We noticed several patterns — not limited to the short fiction field — in which “diversity” initiatives excluded black people and hid antiblackness.”

So much crap in one paragraph… Where to begin?

First, if you’re a “person of color” (which always blows me away how that is cool now but Colored Person is a slur) most of your readers don’t care. No. Really. The vast majority of people who read do so to be entertained. Adventure, comedy, tragedy, whatever. Make them happy or make them cry, you’re doing your job.  Only a tiny percentage of whiny white guilt liberals buy books based upon the author’s race.

Like this one: http://monsterhunternation.com/2015/02/23/the-social-justice-warrior-racist-reading-challenge-a-fisking/

If you come from a different background or culture that gives you some unique perspectives that you can use to make your book more interesting, awesome. Run with it. The important thing is that the book is good.  

So don’t be “an author of color”. Be an author. Period. Technically, I’m an author of color (warm beige according to these Home Depot paint chips) but that’s fucking stupid. I’m telling stories for the mass market, not for some little narrow band of humanity that happens to fit my socioeconomic-cultural-ethnic-religious-sexual oriented background. Because I’d go broke.

But we really need to talk about those “diversity” initiatives, because that is the most destructive piece of do-gooder stupidity foisted on authors that I can think of.

I know an author who is just starting out. He’s black. Last year we were at a con together, and he was excited because he’d been put on his very first panel ever. I asked what it was. And it was one of those Mandatory Diversity In Fiction panels.

What a waste. So you got a talented newcomer, so OBVIOUSLY they aren’t going to get his perspective on a panel for plot, or characters, or something actually related to writing… No. He’s a black writer. So he has to talk about race.

My advice was tell the con organizers that you aren’t their token, and ask to be switched to one of the many panels that fans actually go to and enjoy. (no, really. If you look at the people who attend any given con’s poorly attended Mandatory Diversity Panel, most of the sparse audience are white liberal senior citizen humorless scolds, because nothing says fun at a con like getting yelled at by a gender studies grad on the panel because your cismale oppression is the reason their novel didn’t sell well). Go get on the World Building panel in front of an audience of people who actually enjoy reading, and who will hopefully then get enthusiastic over what you say enough to later purchase your products.

“WRITE WHAT THE MARKET WANTS” IS CODE FOR WHITE CHARACTERS AND STORIES

What utter dreck. This line is why I had to do this fisking.

In his editorial, Fireside Fiction Company owner and editor Brian White points to a systematic structure of racial discrimination that has been built into the science fiction publishing community. Authors leave the field due to the lack of opportunities, while “subtle biases” contribute on a wide scale. “The advice to write “what the market wants” is code for white characters and white stories.

Owen Z. Pitt, not white. Ashok Vadal, not white. Yet somehow I’m a successful author and my core fan base is as red state, meat and potatoes, flag waving, clinging to our god and guns, regular America as it gets.

“What the market wants” is not code for White Stories (whatever the fuck that gibberish is supposed to mean). The market wants to be entertained. They want to have fun. They want emotion. They want to get sucked in because they can’t put the book down and stay up way too late reading. They want rousing stories. They want heroes and villains. They want characters they can cheer for. If you think all that only belongs to white people, fuck off, racist.

The opportunities to network, like six-week writing workshops or weeklong conventions, are really only open to those with the means to miss work.”

What elitist hogwash. Does that stuff help? Maybe. For some people.

When I started writing seriously I had two jobs, one of which was my own start-up company. I wrote most of MHI while working 70 hours a week, and because I was an owner, I got paid last and was usually broke. I was a self-taught writer, based upon reading a whole lot of books, most of which came from the public library.  The first con I ever went to was after I already had my first publishing contract.

Six week writing workshops? Of the many working professional authors I know, I can think of a handful who went to something like that. Even fewer got English degrees. I do however know of a bunch of wannabe dilettantes who like to play at being writers who attend stuff like that. There is a whole subculture of people who won’t ever put in the work necessary to make it as a writer, but they love putting on the trappings of being a writer.

Weeklong conventions? Choose your conventions more carefully. Most of them run over the weekend. And most cons are fan events. If you are going to spend the time/money, make sure you go to one of the ones with really good writing tracks. Networking? Yeah. Networking is helpful. Practicing until you can tell a really good story is way more important.

That white guilt claptrap is silly. Do you really think that writing is the only career where not having free time, resources, and the ability to network holds you back? How about, uh, let’s say EVERY OTHER CAREER too. Just like the guy who went to Harvard has more opportunities than the guy who went to Weber State, or the kid whose dad is in management gets promoted faster than you do. Welcome to life.

The report also included an interview with author N.K. Jemisin, author of The Fifth Seasonand forthcoming Obelisk Gate, who noted that some authors that might have otherwise published through traditional markets have found other outlets for their work. “There’s a gigantic market of self-published and small press published black fiction that kind of eschews the whole traditional published market simply because back in the nineties when all of this really kind of kicked off … the traditional publishing industry basically treated black writers as if they were anomalies.”

Dear God… I just kind of agreed with something N.K. Jemisin said (Correia checks outside to see if the 7th seal has opened). Nope, no blood rain or locust plagues. Well, I’ll be damned.

This article is focused on sci-fi magazines, but they are a relic of an earlier time. I think most of them have gone out of business. This article says they looked at 63 sci-fi magazines. I was shocked there were that many. I’ve sold around 30 pieces of short fiction, and I could only think of like half a dozen sci-fi magazines off the top of my head (and most of those are really just websites).

If there are actually 63 sci-fi mags, I’m guessing some of them have readership measured in the tens of readers. And that’s only if you count the editorial staff. So I’m really not sure how much these marginalized authors are missing out on here. I wonder how many of those pay in “exposure”?

This is a fantastic time to be an author. In the olden days, if a handful of gatekeepers didn’t like you, you were boned. For a long time, unless you were a superstar, there was basically one mainstream publishing house that didn’t give a damn about their author’s personal politics. Luckily, Indy and self-pub have changed the market dramatically.

For a long time entertainment tried to lump as many customers as possible into one big box to provide dumb bland mushy product to. To make a living at this stuff you needed to sell to everybody, including the easily offended. Now, you just need to appeal to one group of fans, and what appeals to them might not appeal to everybody, but screw those guys. You can make what you want. Technology has evolved so that you can get your product right in front of your target audience. It isn’t just books either. Stranger Things got rejected by something like 15 networks for being too weird, and now it is a hit on Netflix.

And the crazy thing is that those gatekeepers who were enforcing the big box of bland dumb mushy product for the masses? Turns out they didn’t know dick about what people actually want anyway. My first novel got rejected by every publishing house and agent in Manhattan as being unsellable. I self-published, did great, wound up with Baen, and I think it is now on its 14th printing.

So if you get rejected by some biased editor, but you know your product is good, and you know there is a market? Go around the assholes and find your fan base yourself. And if it is good and entertaining enough, then it will have legs and grow beyond that one little market you targeted. I started out selling self-published print on demand novels on an internet gun forum.

Furthermore, the authors of the essays point to specific problems that authors routinely face while trying to publish their stories, such as being published only in specific volumes devoted to race, contending with the biases of editors, and so forth.

That there is funny… I actually agree with this one. Like, look, this special Mandatory Diversity edition of our magazine is all Gay Peruvians. Oh boy. I bet the Special Gay Peruvian issue is a huge hit. We’re striking a blow for Gay Peruvians everywhere! Gay Peruvians Destroy Science Fiction! Yay!

That shit is a trap. Because the vast majority of the market just wants to be entertained, when they see something advertised as the Big Gay Peruvian Extravaganza Issue, that sends up warning flags. Those stories could be brilliant, but the customer has been burned too many times by check box, social justice, beat you over the head nonsense, that many of them are going to go spend their money somewhere else.

If I was a gay Peruvian, I’d want to be thought of as a good author. Not a Gay Peruvian author. I don’t want to only get published when a Caring Liberal needs to trot out their show pony so they can brag at a WorldCon party about how super not racist they are. Don’t let some jackass editor stick you in a box.

“I’ve got a story to sell you, Mrs. Editor. It is really good!”

“Sorry, Pablo, we’ll have to save that one for Gay Peruvian Sci-Fi Volume 2.”

White noted that the report wasn’t intended to point to magazines and expose an issue. He wanted to point to the larger issue of the entire industry as a whole. For his part, he noted that his own magazine was part of the problem: in 2015 only 9.4 percent of their authors were black, and thus far in 2016, they hadn’t published a single black author.

I like when they break down ethnic groups to the decimal, like this is scientific or something.

When you submit something, the editor probably doesn’t know what color the author is. That’s not the kind of thing that you put on your query letter. Writers are self-employed contractors. We don’t have to fill out an EEOC form and check a box for ethnicity.

So of those percentages, how many POC (I fucking hate that term) authors got rejected, but the author never knew what color they were? I got rejected a hundred times. I’m pretty sure it wasn’t because my last name has double Rs and too many vowels, but if I wanted to be a big pussy about it I could have added racism to the giant list of challenges all aspiring authors face, just to make the process seem extra daunting and insurmountable.

FUNDAMENTALLY, GENRE PUBLISHING WORLD HAS A DEMONSTRABLE TRACK RECORD OF UNDER-PUBLISHING BLACK SCIENCE FICTION AUTHORS

This tired argument gets trotted out every so often for the SJWs to freak out about. You can change Black to Female, Gay, Hispanic, Indian, Asian, Transsexual, or whatever they’re angry about today. Then you can just Ctrl H to find and replace which race and industry they are outraged for, and cut and paste in the same article. You can produce click bait way faster that way.

Think I’m exaggerating? Here is where I fisked NPR because Latinos aren’t in enough movies (they were confused because my kids don’t look like Machete or wear sombreros)  http://monsterhunternation.com/2014/08/07/fisking-npr-about-latinos-in-the-movies/

Fundamentally, the genre publishing world — even amongst publications that have set out to be inclusive —

Inclusive my ass. The goal shouldn’t be to get included because you check a box, but because you’re good at what you do.

has a demonstrable track record of under-publishing black science fiction authors, who have gone out to establish their own outlets and means to get their stories out.

Hundreds of thousands of INDIVIDUALS of every imaginable shape, size, color, and belief system have gone around traditional publishing to get their stories out because snooty gatekeepers suck.

Justina Ireland noted that the solution is simple: “Acquire short fiction by black authors, especially fiction that challenges your comfort.” Taking active steps to ensure that black authors are included would be a positive first step toward making sure that the magazine market gets to a point where their portfolio of authors matches that of the country’s demographics.

That isn’t a simple solution. That is a stupid solution. Well, Pablo, this story is awesome, but we can’t take it because we are short .4% on Pacific Islanders this quarter.

Make sure your magazine’s portfolio statistically matches the country’s demographics? That is fantastic advice to give to a floundering dinosaur industry hemorrhaging subscribers, which is struggling to stay alive, and already can’t afford to pay its writers.

You know what readers love? “Fiction that challenges their comfort.” Brilliant. Do that often enough and you won’t have any of those pesky customers bothering you.

The actual simple solution?

Editors, understand your target market, then buy stories you think your audience will like enough so they will continue to give you money for them.

Authors, write the best stories you can and try to sell them. Be professional. Keep improving. Repeat.  

There is going to be an MHI anthology from various authors next year. When we put together the list of authors to invite, I didn’t give a crap about the author’s sex/race. My criteria was simple. Are they talented? Are they a good fit to write in this world? Are they easy to work with?

Ironically, it turned out to be fairly diverse (way more diverse than the crappy stats in this article at least!) And not just stupid skin deep SJW diversity, but we gathered authors from a bunch of different perspectives and backgrounds. (you want real diversity, get a YA author best known for her princess adventures to write trailer park elves. The guy writing Franks is a self-proclaimed liberal, and his story is BADASS). At no point did I sit down with the US census data to try and puzzle out if it matched exactly. That’s going full potato. That’s ridiculous. It was more like, yeah, this story rocks. The fans will love it.

I brought up the number of submissions to begin with, because that is key. Recently a friend of mine was editing a project. Behind the scenes he had invited a roughly equal number of male and female authors to submit. A couple of male authors agreed to submit on spec, the female authors turned him down. He didn’t think much of it at the time, as he was just trying to get good authors by his deadline (actually I turned him down too, because of lack of time. Seriously, once you have a rep for being able to produce on demand you will never have a shortage of job offers). Sadly, when the project was revealed the editor was immediately attacked for his misogynistic hatemongery and attempt at excluding women from sci-fi.  

Not everything is about sex/race, you social justice mopes. Sometimes individual humans just want to do stuff, or they don’t.

White noted that he wasn’t sure if Fireside would be able to publish a follow-up report. “It’s definitely an issue we want to continue to talk about. I am not sure if we will do a full follow-up by reviewing all of 2016 but we will be pursuing the issue as much as we can.”

In other words, the editor from this magazine you’ve never heard of is virtue signaling to the SJW contingent that he’s one of them, and please talk about his publishing house’s effort to be all diverse and stuff, and write more articles like this, because that’s great publicity.

You want more authors from Demographic X to write in Genre Y?

I talked about something similar in my fisking when I responded to Tor.com’s stupid article about how GenCon was racist, only that time it was where gamers come from, rather than writers. http://monsterhunternation.com/2014/08/19/no-tor-com-gencon-isnt-racist-a-fisking/  But the same fundamental principles apply. You want to make more writers from one particular group, get more people in that group reading, and make it fun.

Aspiring authors, I’ve said this before, there are only two deceptively simple steps to getting published.

  1. Get good enough people will give you money for your stuff.
  2. Find the people who will give you money for your stuff.

How you accomplish those two things is irrelevant, and there’s a bunch of different ways to do them, but that’s all there is to it.

Look, breaking into this business is a soul crushing pain in the ass anyway. Don’t make it any harder than it needs to be. Don’t get hung up. Work hard, be smart, be professional. If some editor is a biased asshole, skip them, and go somewhere else. You don’t need them. You’re not beholden to anyone but yourself.

No luck in short fiction? It pays crap anyway. Go write a novel. No publisher bought it? Self-publish. Market the hell out of it while you write your next idea. Treat it like your real job and eventually it will become one.

 

Son of the Black Sword is a Finalist for the Dragon Award
EBR reviews Alliance of Shadows
Ray
Guest

Good fisk of a silly commentary. It’s like they think they can shame scifi fans into goodthink. Now, I must go write.

Henry
Guest

Wonderfullest paragraph by Larry. I just have to pay special homage to it:

“And the crazy thing is that those gatekeepers who were enforcing the big box of bland dumb mushy product for the masses? Turns out they didn’t know dick about what people actually want anyway. My first novel got rejected by every publishing house and agent in Manhattan as being unsellable. I self-published, did great, wound up with Baen, and I think it is now on its 14th printing.”

JamesT
Guest

Exactly. I want to read a whacking good story and not be lectured at. As soon as you lecture, I am gone.

KnuckleDraer
Guest

Exactly right. I’ve never cared about race, creed, color etc. A good story is a good story, and all else is dross and ritual dick-beating.

jic
Guest

Ever since it went out of fashion to have photos of the author on the back of book jackets, I’ve had no idea what races most of the writers I’ve read are. Strangely, that has had no significant impact on how much I’ve enjoyed their books.

Anon4321
Guest

You say you don’t want to be CHALLENGED? G-g-g-gasp!

Eli
Guest

Being lectured to isn’t the same as being challenged.

Henry
Guest

Oh, and one other thing: Regarding the perceived problem of under-representation of various types of writers…who cares? I mean, really, who the fuck cares? Not me, that’s for sure. I want to read good stories. Sorry for the badthink!

TXRed
Guest

*SIGH* Thank you for taking this one on, Larry. I saw similar in academia, within the arguments that “only [race/tribal affiliation/sex/sexual preference/background] should write about [sub-genre of history] because only they truly understand it.” Followed shortly by the plaint that so-and-so grad student of color or female grad student isn’t researching [SJW-approved “appropriate” topic/field] and what can be done about this, because there aren’t enough good studies of [SJW-approved topic] by professors of [description]. *Grrrr*

NR_Pax
Member

So it’s cool for the other side to say “All those people think alike”? I get confused sometimes about what is allowed.

Shadowdancer
Guest

It’s pretty easy. “Everything we say you’re not allowed to do, WE are allowed to do, because we are on the Goodthink side.”

Kevin Findley
Guest

Nicely put.

Shadowdancer
Guest

Thank you

perturbed
Guest
“Only the descendants of slaves can write or talk about what it was like to be slaves.” Yeah, just as only the descendants of 19th Century Royal Navy gunboat captains can write about what it was like to have to let slave ships escape because half the cargo (e.g. the female and underage half) had been dumped overboard and was drowning and needed saving? Heh. It would give SJWs the vapours to realise just how much of Britain’s “imperialist” reach was soaked up in trying to wipe out slavery, but that’s not a story which gets told very much in… Read more »
snelson134
Guest

Weber touched on it too, and I like his solution in the Honorverse.

TheWriterInBlack
Guest
Eh… Sort of. In reality the short fiction market is a good place to get started because it is easier to finish a 5,000 word piece than a 100,000 word novel. Shorts are good practice but the pay is awful. I’ve known some of the most prolific and successful short fiction authors alive, and they don’t make enough off of it to live on. In my experience (just think of me as the writerly equivalent of a 2nd Lieutenant 😉 ) I think the main advantage of short fiction is that it’s less intimidating. Staring at that first blank page… Read more »
TheWriterInBlack
Guest

Huh. “Blockquote” didn’t work there. Have the usable tags changed?

Tom Knighton
Guest

It shows up correctly after you click “read more” for some reason.

TheWriterInBlack
Guest

Thanks. Weird.

Robin_Munn
Member

If you scroll down to the comment that Brad Torgerson made, his link was stripped out of the comment until you click “Read more”. And Tom Knighton’s comment, a bit above Brad’s, has no paragrahs until you click “Read more”.

It looks like WordPress decided that until you click “Read more”, you don’t get to see ANY HTML tags that the original author used. Not blockquotes, not links, not even paragraphs. Stupid way to implement the feature if you ask me.

snelson134
Guest

And what about the comments that WordPress decides aren’t long enough for Read More???

WordPress delenda est.

TheWriterInBlack
Guest

My comment starts at “In my experience”

NR_Pax
Member

“Treat it like your real job and eventually it will become one.”

Larry, if you aren’t using that line when you are on panels, you really should.

Matthew Bowman
Guest
I started editing as a freelancer when I lost my job and needed something to tide me over until a “real” one came along. I didn’t say I was discriminated against because I was handicapped; heck, one of the most fun jobs I’ve ever had was at a place where I could have sued for millions due to the ADA violations I had to work with. (The manager was an ass. The job was fun.) Yeah, I could tell some employers couldn’t hire me because of the wheelchair, but it usually wasn’t their fault and I’m not the litigious sort.… Read more »
Hubert
Guest

This whole time I was reading the insanely popular Alex Cross series, I had no idea that the black main characters were actually white. Crazy!

Christopher M. Chupik
Guest
Christopher M. Chupik

Yeah, but they’re written by a white guy, so they don’t count. 😉

gmmay
Guest

Because: Cultural Appropriation. duh!

And away we go on the Identity Supremacist Merry-go-round of logic.

Lea
Guest

” Here is where I fisked NPR because Latinos aren’t in enough movies ”

My favorite part of that article was the movie where Jlo in Miami was too white.

Keith Glass
Guest

I’ll simply repeat what I’ve been saying for years: the only colors that matter in literature of ANY sort. . . is black ink on white paper*.

(* If you use an e-reader of any sort, that may vary from person to person, but you get the idea. . .)

Mark
Guest

The Larry Corriea School of writing dissolved down into 4 easy steps. I like it.

Tom Knighton
Guest
Well said, Larry. Years ago, this subject came up on a writing forum I was active with at the time. When I asked how many minority READERS there were, I found myself under attack. Apparently, it was horribly inappropriate to ask that question for some reason. Personally, I was thinking that if the percentage of minority readers was low, then you’re going to have a lower percentage of writers than society as a whole. That’s just logical. Further, I never saw where to mark my race on a submission form for any magazine ever. I had a novelette I submitted… Read more »
Draven
Member

Now Tom, you know you can’t ask a question like that, that would make sense.

Tom Knighton
Guest

I know. Silly me.

trackback

[…] Go give it a read. You can find it here. […]

Martin L. Shoemaker
Guest

A little data: Duotrope (which is not exhaustive, but indicative) lists 22 pro paying markets for short stories. Of those, at least three are themed anthologies, and maybe one or two others. If they found 63 magazines, most were semi pro, token, or lower.

Martin L. Shoemaker
Guest

Or, I should add: If they found 63 pro paying markets, where can I get their list? I need more markets!

Julie Frost
Guest
I found 59 pro-paying markets (5c a word or more) on the Grinder, but a LOT of those are “temporarily closed”–one of which is Fireside. Sorting through for the ones that are currently open, there are 22. Writing and subbing short fiction is its own brand of crazy-making (especially when you’ve got as many stories circulating as I do–they call me “Kaijulie” on Codex), and this business of “oh, we’re not publishing enough of Insert Demographic Here” is just one more layer of that. How do they even KNOW unless they’re getting into creepy amounts of stalking? And as Larry… Read more »
Lauren
Guest

In the past I’ve submitted to editors and agents who were suddenly looking at my linkedin profile. I don’t know if there was other “stalking” going on, since linkedin is the only one that says WHO was looking at your profile. So it really happens, and probably a lot.

Shawna
Guest

I wrote some short stories/novelettes recently and thought about subbing them to magazines/websites. Then I looked at the state of the market, combined with the number of people subbing for those limited spots, and decided I’ll just self-pub them. Subbing short stories isn’t worth the effort for such limited likely returns to me, especially since I’m more focused on novels.

Semi-related, I’d love to read an anthology called “Conservative Fundamentalist Christians Destroy Sci-Fi”. Or maybe using some other word than ‘destroy’, since that’s a pretty dumb word to use when you want to *attract* sci-fi readers.

Julie Frost
Guest

I wonder what it would take to Kickstart an antho like that. Along with ones for fantasy and horror…

Shawna
Guest

Well, if a group of authors gets together to pretty much do it for fun (i.e. free) and it’s self-pubbed on Amazon, probably not all that much. (Disclaimer: I’ve never attempted something like that, so I’m wildly guessing.)

The only down side is that some good authors fitting that description prefer to go under the radar and may not want to ‘out’ themselves to join in.

Julie Frost
Guest

I’d want to pay pro rates (at least) for it, though, and get a whiz-bang cover. Just to drive the point home. Looking at the Kickstarter for POC Destroy, they had a rather modest $5000 goal and managed to raise ten times that amount. However, they were going to publish whether they hit the goal or not. I know jack-all about running a KS and would need to crunch some numbers to see how much it would need to raise in order to do it “right.”

Shawna
Guest

I’d love to know if you decide to actually attempt this.

Mary
Guest

Also note that you have to draw up a contract and things.

Mary
Guest

I recommend — Sell them bundled in collections, too. I get much better sales on collections than on individuals.

Shadowdancer
Guest

*grin* I have to say, I find ‘Kaijulie’ a cute nickname.

Brad R. Torgersen
Guest
Larry, we’re more or less on the same wavelength about this. What I find bleakly amusing is how this racism fear-mongering essentially indicts the left-wing in a self-conspiracy. Since publishing is dominated and controlled (upwards of 90% or better) by concerned, caring, progressive, open-minded, tolerant liberals, why are those same concerned, caring, progressive, open-minded, tolerant liberals always crying about how SF/F publishing in particular is so biased and terrible against (insert victim group label here)! This is essentially the left hand working against the other left hand. If it’s true that SF/F publishing — especially in the micro-economy of the… Read more »
Kat
Member

Excellent point, Brad. BTW, *finally* got to reading “Chaplain’s War” yesterday, and liked it very much!

Brad R. Torgersen
Guest

At your service, Kat! I am so glad the book did well by you! 😀

Brian Niemeier
Guest

Never interrupt the enemy when he’s making a mistake 😉

Jeff_Duntemann
Member

Especially when the enemy is pulling the Streisand Chain on you or on one of your allies.

Shadowdancer
Guest

Query: what is the Streisand Chain? / what does it mean, please? (I haven’t run across that one yet.)

Robin_Munn
Member

I don’t know either, but my guess is that it’s referring to the Streisand Effect, but in reverse. I.e., when your opponent is bringing you more publicity that’s going to end up helping you.

Brian Niemeier
Guest

I think Jeff is talking about how Twitter’s shadowban increased my blog traffic and book sales tenfold 🙂

Only Larry’s Book Bomb! of Nethereal managed to top those results.

Carbonel
Guest

I finally read Nethereal as a result. It still isn’t my cuppa tea (Boy howdy, it isn’t) but it’s fine brew nonetheless.

Brian Niemeier
Guest

Thanks!

I want readers to have fun. If my stuff doesn’t float your boat, by all means go forth and find something that does, with my blessing 🙂

Shadowdancer
Guest

Muahahahaha. Congratulations!

Seriously, these idiots are the best advertisements we could ever have.

Andrew Jones
Guest

It’s way worse than a conspiracy against writers. It’s a conspiracy against readers.

Brian Niemeier
Guest

You called it.

Luckily there are magazines like Sci Phi Journal and Cirsova that don’t pull that BS.

Andrew Jones
Guest

It’s not that the conspiracy is against current readers. The “feed stock” for writers is readers. Some communities don’t read. Those readers that will never be are the targets, I’ll be generous and say unintended, of the conspiracy.

Heh
Guest

They are fluttering their useless plumage to signal We Must All Love Diversity Harder.

Doctor Locketopus
Guest

There’s a picture somewhere on the web of the Tor company picnic.

There are Klan rallies with more melanin than that crew.

Odd, that. Odd how all their high-ranking editors seem to look like the Haydens. Odd how all their top-shelf authors do, too.

Grace Meehan
Guest

Seriously, I do not get this whole race thing. As far as I am concerned, there is only one race, the Human race and frankly, the older I get, the less impressed I am with humans and the more I prefer the company of my Irish Setters. They have far more humanity than my co-workers and neighbors can ever hope to have, much less liberals.

Tom Knighton
Guest

That line of thinking gets ya labeled a racist these days.

No, really. They argue that by believing that, you’re undermining someone else’s experiences.

But it’s OK to undermine MY experiences as the white guy who is a minority in his town. Totally different things.

Shawna
Guest

I really don’t like to use ‘race’ when I mean ‘ethnicity’ because when I think race, as you say, I think ‘human’. Probably because I was raised on sci-fi/fantasy, where ‘race’ means ‘man/human’, ‘elf’, ‘Vulcan’, etc.

wyrdbard
Member
There was an amusing bout of confusion on the Nanowrimo fantasy boards. A guy came in to see how acceptable a certain ‘interracial’ couple would be to audiences. He was highly put out when people started asking him about the world he was building, and essentially went ‘this is a non-issue’ when they discovered it was a white man with a black woman. He did not take the “This is the Fantasy Forum. When you say ‘interracial’ we think Elf and Dwarf or Human and Dragon, problems like that.” Apparently some people have trouble getting past the notion that fiction… Read more »
Shadowdancer
Guest

Apparently some people have trouble getting past the notion that fiction worlds don’t necessarily have their hangups, real or immagined, in the same spots as the real world.

Great example, start from here: https://bradrtorgersen.wordpress.com/2016/08/05/addressing-the-problem/#comment-18675

It’s Clamps being retarded, (especially since he’s bitching about the existence of DRAGONS in a freaking fantasy setting) but for those who don’t believe the mindset exists, there ya go.

These are the sort of people who’d have problems believing in dinosaurs, because ‘nothing could be that big and live on land…!’

Shadowdancer
Guest

Yes. And I’m always somewhat amazed that he hasn’t gotten beaten up IRL. There is NO WAY that someone as consistently shitty as he is not to have the same attitudes displayed and vomited exorcist style RL. He breaks the G.I.F.T. premise.

jic
Guest

“It’s Clamps being retarded”

That seems redundant.

Shadowdancer
Guest

It’s a new measurement of SJW retardation.

I mean, come on. Arguing against the existence of dragons in a fantasy setting. It’s actually stupider than his usual antics. Especially since his pathetic attempts at ‘logic’ crash and burn in rather impressively spectacular ways. (Also, reveals even more of his ignorance about things in general.)

Shadowdancer
Guest

Yeah. When I first ran into this whole race thing (coming out from behind the Iron Curtain) I was very confused. “We’re all human.” Apparently that mindset is still somehow ‘racist’ and ‘ignorant’ and ‘bigoted.’

jabrwok
Guest

If Group X doesn’t read much, then it’s unlikely to produce many writers. If these people are so concerned about the lack of black writers then they should address the educational and familial circumstances in the black community that lead to blacks not reading much.

Or they could just accuse Big Publishing of being racist and then turn their brains off.

Shadowdancer
Guest
There was a comment in Brad Torgersen’s blog by the lovely Julie Pascal that I’m going to quote here: I never bookmark stuff, which is a problem. Reading articles about encouraging kids and young people of color to read is always interesting. There was a video promoting a program designed for that some time ago and what I noticed was the black woman who ran it, besides being very well educated and an educator, explained during the course of it all that her daughter read Artemis Fowl (sp?) and that the books usually recommended to black kids by teachers, the… Read more »
Patrick Chester
Guest

Likely isn’t really about encouraging them to read, more about destroying their morale and convincing them they need the progs to “help” them with all the icky things “oppressing” them.

Actually, I can see why they don’t want “people of color” to get out and read the “wrong” books: They might realize they don’t need the progs to “protect” them.

Shadowdancer
Guest

Of course they don’t want them to realise that MLK Jr. and Abe Lincoln won. They don’t want them leaving the metaphorical mental plantation, after all.

Especially true in the West-culture nations: Freedom is a mindset. If a person believes they are powerless, they are mentally enslaved.

BobtheRegisterredFool
Guest
BobtheRegisterredFool

Books with heroes, or at least protagonists, instead of the victimist of victims are the White Fiction that excludes minorities. (Note that Artemis, being Irish, is not white. Writing about Irishmen who are not killing other Irishmen, starving to death, or being exterminated for the greater good of man-kind is not authentic. )

Julie Pascal
Guest
That’s really interesting. On facebook I got to see a little “friend-of-a-friend” discussion about writing YA literature with Irish characters and the author being told by editors that she hadn’t done it right because where are the Troubles? Being American and not Irish or even Irish-American, I’ve not a clue what the “Troubles” are other than it’s capitalized. But apparently this is a thing. If you’ve got a story about the Irish but you don’t have Troubles then it’s not authentic. Alas, trying to gently tie this into similar “not authentic” ethnic stories from an USian perspective didn’t work. I… Read more »
Shadowdancer
Guest

*dryly* I don’t suppose that it was mentioned that in Africa, not only are albinos considered magic and/or witches, the usual fate of these albinos, often as children, often as infants, is to be butchered and their body parts sold as charm, or some parts of them eaten as magic cures. Even if the family was trying to protect the child, there are horror stories of relatives stealing the child to sell, as albino parts fetch a VERY high price.

Julie Pascal
Guest

I was aware of the killing but not selling parts for charms. OMG. But I *was* aware of the killing.

The other not-so-remarkable criticism was that *symbolically* the girl with magic was *white*.

I cried a little for humanity.

Shadowdancer
Guest
I… expected that criticism. They’re flaming idiots for what is a deadly curse for albinos in Africa. The idea is that the albinism is caused by otherworldly means (insert here whether by gods or spirits) – the lack of pigmentation is ‘proof’ of it. Albino parts bring ‘luck.’ Or power and wealth. I remember reading an article elsewhere that claimed potions were made of parts of albinos either as medicine or magic, but I don’t want to dig. Most news out of Africa is intensely depressing in the way Africans regularly dehumanize each other. http://www.dailymail.co.uk/news/article-2922243/Hunted-like-animals-sold-families-75-000-Tanzania-s-albinos-hacked-apart-witchdoctors-believe-body-parts-bring-luck-sick-trade-fuelled-country-s-elite.html And yes, greed has even… Read more »
BobtheRegisterredFool
Guest
BobtheRegisterredFool

‘The Troubles’ is specific shorthand for aspects of Irish history after conquest by England. Alleged serious genocide attempts count. I think 19th century American discrimination against Irish doesn’t?

I know that the cold war conflict was part of them, but I haven’t heard that they still continue.

wyrdbard
Member
According to a friend of mine (Irish History buff.) there were, roughly 3 sets of ‘Troubles’ (more complicated than that, but that tends to be how it’s grouped). I don’t remember the time frame of all three, but one was early 1900s roughly WWI era. The most recent got rolling in the 70s and is what most people think of when they talk about ‘The Troubles’ these days. That was the one that resulted in the IRA and all that mess. There are conflicts still, but they’ve tapered off in the last 15 years, mostly because funding by those of… Read more »
BobtheRegisterredFool
Guest
BobtheRegisterredFool

Part of the reason US funding fell off is because the Feds helped cut it off. The seventies one may have been a communist proxy, as Ireland is now socialist. I want to say that there was an earlier period, around either 1700 or 1800, when the blue was supplanted with the political green.

John R. Ellis
Guest

I much preferred it when teachers recommended a book like “A Wrinkle in Time”, “The Hobbit”, “The Lion, the Witch, and the Wardrobe” and “Redwall” to the ones who were always recommending the books about depressed oppressed suppressed person deals with the deaths of their mother, dog, brother, and pet llama all on the same day. o_o;

Shadowdancer
Guest

See, if those victim-protagonists were able to fight their way out of their issues (either mentally or otherwise) that would actually be a plot with character development potential.

But I don’t think that really happens with those books.

perturbed
Guest

That would depend on whether a singular entity or collective of such was responsible for all the deaths and could be engaged and defeated. Sounds like a reasonable premise for “Monster Hunter Memoirs: Teen Lit Terror” (LOL; I’m sure others could suggest a better name).

BobtheRegisterredFool
Guest
BobtheRegisterredFool

Monster Hunter Diaries. Memoirs are for old people.

Robin_Munn
Member
Whereas now, if that woman wanted to hand her daughter an adventure story featuring a black kid as the main character, she could hand her Changeling’s Island and be very happy with her daughter’s interest in it. The “problem”, from the SJW’s point of view, is that it doesn’t become obvious that the protagonist is black until, oh, about three-quarters of the way into the book, when you find out his grandmother’s story. Because he never wallows in self-pity about the prejudice he faces because of his race, and the self-pity parties he does throw (which he thankfully gets over… Read more »
Shadowdancer
Guest

So it’ll never make its way onto the SJW-approved recommended reading lists, despite the fact that Dave Freer checked the box they keep saying they want people to check.

Therein lies their hypocrisy. It isn’t about putting ‘more’ XYZ protagonists or characters, it’s all about doing what the SJWs want other people to do.

SJWs cannot create things that anyone other than a SJW will want.

perturbed
Guest

Personal experience with multiple SJW has indicated to me that “SJWs cannot create anything” is possibly more correct. Not that they are incapable of writing fiction per se (good or bad), but sometimes I feel they would rather write screeds of meta tearing others apart for their *isms than bother to create themselves, in equal word count, what they claim is lacking.

Shadowdancer
Guest

By the by, I also recommended Dave Freer’s works to a fellow parent, who got into the conversation about books by asking if I was the author of Sparrowind, which he loved. He was looking for books that his book-loving daughter could enjoy, and whose heroes were… well, good guys. Changeling’s Island was one I felt was age appropriate, but of course, like any good parent, the vetting is his. =)

Chris L
Guest

She could also hand her a copy of Tunnel in the Sky.

Celia Hayes
Guest

““What the market wants” is not code for White Stories (whatever the fuck that gibberish is supposed to mean). The market wants to be entertained. They want to have fun. They want emotion. They want to get sucked in because they can’t put the book down and stay up way too late reading. They want rousing stories. They want heroes and villains. They want characters they can cheer for. If you think all that only belongs to white people, fuck off, racist.”

Words to live by, words to live by.

Tom Knighton
Guest

“This is code for that” is really just proggie-speak for “They didn’t say anything we can attack, so we’re going to pretend something they said actually means something completely different.”

Patrick Chester
Guest

Yet we’re not supposed to notice that the “code” came from them and not the folks they point and screech at.

Tom Knighton
Guest

Of course not…because they possess some super-secret source of information so they’re privy to the code but no one else is.

Including the people who are allegedly speaking in the code.

Shadowdancer
Guest

That’s why it’s always fun to watch them turn on their own for violating the latest iteration.

Jeff Gauch
Guest

It turns out that code breaking is much easier when you don’t care if the decoded message matches the original message.

Angie
Guest

In all the years I was a short fiction editor, I never once inquired about the race of submitting authors. I knew basically nothing about the authors. All I cared about was the quality of the stories they sent me.

Brad R. Torgersen
Guest

Angie, you are clearly part of the problem; since failing to specifically seek out the demographics of your authors — putting “fun” first — is automatically code for WHITE STRAIGHT MALE SUPREMACY! How could you betray your lady parts like that? 😉

Angie
Guest

🙂

TomT
Guest

This means that Angie is actually a White CISMale Morman doesn’t it.

Dan Lane
Guest
I was also a short fiction editor for some years. There’s literally *no* time to consider that when you accept SEVEN short fiction for the mag, and have over *three thousand* submitted pieces to review and thumbs up or down in a week, after real jobs. That’s less than .2% accepted. My editorlings didn’t even get to know the names of the authors they were reviewing. Just “Submission #1294, Water Lilies Attack!” If they didn’t show the quality we needed to keep our little ‘mag on it’s spit-and-bubble-gum budget, out it went. The only race we noted was the one… Read more »
TheWriterInBlack
Guest
Mike Resnick once told me that first readers at book publishers have to reject 60 manuscripts an hour if they want to keep their jobs. That includes the time opening the package, and stuffing it (and the rejection slip) back in the SASE (this is from before e-subs became commonplace, but the same concepts apply). This average also includes the greater time spent on those that aren’t rejected. From what I know, the situation is similar for short fiction markets. With that kind of time pressure, first readers and acquisition editors do not have time to consider anything but whether… Read more »
DeTroyes
Guest

I’m guessing most editors who read that piece will shrug their shoulders and go right on doing whatever it is they were doing. A few might pay a little lip service in public in the name of virtue signalling, but that’s about as far as it will go.

Joe in PNG
Guest

It’s a sacramental act to expunge guilt. They weep and wail about the exclusion of minorities. Quenches the liberal guilt for a bit.

Angie
Guest

Exactly!

Lauren
Guest

A few months ago I got something from a friend regarding a writing contest for a major publishing house, and when I went to look it stated specifically that they wanted only authors in “under-represented” groups. Minorities and gender-benders, specifically. What are they going to do if a *gasp* white straight woman enters their contest? Shut her down, reject when they find out her race?

I can’t help wondering how many decent entries they got.

Angie
Guest

Wow.

hobanwashburne
Member

Larry:
You must strike a blow for diversity. Next time Agent Franks is blown to smithereens have him reconstructed with body parts that reflect the ethnic, gender and fabulousness diversity that is the gorgeous mosaic we call America. Give him a Scandinavian face with African hair but dyed pink. I’ll leave his genitalia up to you but remember that’s a construct anyway.

jabrwok
Guest

In Franks’ case, it actually is…

hobanwashburne
Member

Well yeah, but don’t say it out loud. It might make him self conscious or even hurt his feelings.

Professor Headbutt
Guest

Franks’ entire body is a “social construct.” I’d love for some character to rhapsodize about how he is a walking embodiment of the postmodern fusion of micronarrative local truths while rejecting the conformist hegemony of yadda yadda yadda, only to receive the world’s largest You Are An Idiot look from Franks.

DeTroyes
Guest

To be followed, no doubt, by the world’s largest reanimated fist punching the guys lights out.

hobanwashburne
Member

Oh, I don’t know. Once Agent Franks has a chance to think about the importance of avoiding the appearance of trans phobia by a representative of the Obama administration I’m sure he’ll adopt the appropriate response and say “Just call me Shirley.”

Kristophr
Guest

I can just imagine Franks dealing with an SJW Obama administration superior. He takes a few minutes to look up this form of retardation on the internet, and starts playing said person like a computer game, manoeuvring him into a position where he can lawfully, and within his contract, simply kill him.

Kristophr
Guest

Madame Undersecretary: “But we can’t just slaughter metabolically challenged individuals like vampires and zombies! We must encourage them to earn PUFF exemptions, help them overcome the negative emotions Cis-Male society has imposed on them”.

Agent Franks: “Please demonstrate this for me. I’ll open the cage door for you.”

hobanwashburne
Member

You’ve got to wonder what Franks’ demon detection sense would make of Bill and Hillary.

Wat Tyler
Guest

GRUNGE.

Andrew
Guest

You think Franks would stay in the room long enough to hear the conversation? I get that the MCB looses hundreds of agent-hours a month to various mandatory training events, but I don’t think you could get Franks to participate in them. If his choices are “harass Earl Harbinger” and “listen to lecture on diversity”…I think Earl’s getting annoyed.

Worse (?) he could just download the brutal facts of on a wide array of historical conflicts and conditions. He wouldn’t bother to do it, because it isn’t worth his time.

perturbed
Guest

After “Nemesis”, I think he could explain to Earl the reason for the visit and the two of them could sit down and commiserate together.

Shawna
Guest

I could actually see that being a hilarious short story.

hobanwashburne
Member

I just finished Nemesis a week ago and it opened up my eyes to Franks’ potential as a protagonist. Previously I thought of him as a background figure or almost a comic foil. But now I know that he’s potentially a pivotal moral player in the Correia-verse. And more than ever I think Adam Baldwin needs to play him in the movies (plural). But yeah, it could still be fun to mix and match his parts. I remember they added an MHI tattoo to one of his replacement arms. That was funny!

sabrinachase
Member

One wonders if the data for this trenchant analysis was adjusted for the possibility of authors *hiding* their ethnicity/other special checkbox status? e.g. “Education of Little Tree”.

I have always actively avoided being put in a “special” ghetto, in some cases like a cat avoiding being put in a carrier. Ghettos are bad, mkay? No, you are not “helping” me. No, I do not want a pink slide rule. No, I don’t need to go to “Women in $Activity” meetings, I have real work to do. And then I’m going to the range to pick up guys. 😀

Tom Knighton
Guest

But don’t you understand just how oppressed you are??

sabrinachase
Member

You guys need to go back to Oppression School–you’re not doing it very well. Stop being so welcoming and friendly! Between shop class, machine shop, drafting, a STEM degree, and my current software job I swear I have collected enough “exception to the rule” coupons to get the full china set with serving utensils and gravy boat.

Tom Knighton
Guest

That’s what makes it so nefarious. You don’t even realize it’s happening!!!

imnohbody
Member

Yeah, they slip it in so effortlessly that before you can say “bibbity-bobbity-boo” you’re internalizing the misogyny, Sabrina.

(And WordPress is still being an ass about logins, even its own. 😛 )

Shadowdancer
Guest

Such a nefairoius deeds will be punished with cuddles?

Shadowdancer
Guest

You guys need to go back to Oppression School–you’re not doing it very well. Stop being so welcoming and friendly!

I know, right? Apparently, we women are oppressed for being accepted as human beings, appreciated for our positive strengths and virtues, and forgiven for the less toxic flaws.

Nah, yanno what? I like our guys the way they are. Let’s keep ’em that way. <3

Shadowdancer
Guest

Ah… the smell of gunpowder is sooooo sexy. And the presence of real men, especially so.

STW
Guest
I’ve noticed that the “theme” of a collection (which is all a magazine is) can affect who contributes and what, therefore, is actually published. For example, one of my daughters contributed as essay to a book being published next month that explores sexuality in the LDS community. One of the reasons she kept her essay in was because it is one of the very few that approaches the topic from a traditional chaste before marriage fidelity after position. Most others who have that view chose not to include their thoughts. The book will likely give a slanted perspective of reality.… Read more »
Shawna
Guest

It seems like people who have a traditional view of sex (which is to say, in this case, one which actually holds to the teaching of the faith they profess to have) are less likely to want to talk about it openly, as if talking about sex is in itself an unholy thing that proper people don’t do. Which is really sad, since it does tend to make the messages about sex that one hears be skewed against traditional values.

Mary
Guest

Alternatively, they think it is too more important to be lightly bandied about in conversation.

Shawna
Guest

What constitutes “lightly bandied about”? I’m pretty sure the more important something is, the more it’s worth having a serious discussion about. Locker room banter? No. Serious, thoughtful discussion/debate? Yes.

BobtheRegisterredFool
Guest
BobtheRegisterredFool

In addition, there is reason to suspect that the old publishing system is dying. See authorearnings dot com. Old publishing could, in theory, police for race. Website vendors couldn’t automate that, so it can’t happen for indy, unless the middleman site takes months to put the book up. Readers aren’t going to bother figuring that out, unless you make a point of telling them. Hook ’em on the story, and your background won’t matter.

The Phantom
Guest
I saw this article the other day, and in between snorting in derision I thought of what Larry would say. This is better than I came up with. I snorted the hardest right here: “Acquire short fiction by black authors, especially fiction that challenges your comfort.” Frankly I need all the goddamn comfort I can get these days, and there’s not much of it to be found. To the author who writes something I can dig into and bury myself in, to that guy/girl/whatsit goes my money. To the SJW trying to challenge my comfort goes a quick glance at… Read more »
Patrick Chester
Guest

Every time I see them use “code words” I want to scream out loud. They see something, think it means something bad and claim it’s a “code word” by the icky people they disagree with?! Yeah, right. It’s a monster from their Id, not someone else’s.

Shadowdancer
Guest

They must have the most boring black bug rooms in existence. Across all multiverses.

Richard McEnroe
Guest

Of COURSE the liberal wrote a great Franks story. Just think of all the suppressed rate, violence and resentment roiling in his (?) denied soul…

Richard McEnroe
Guest

Rage, not rate.

Christopher M. Chupik
Guest
Christopher M. Chupik

Rage + hate = rate

Shadowdancer
Guest

rhate?

Patrick Chester
Guest

Ruh roh…

Richard McEnroe
Guest

You know, I’ll bet if Our Progressive Betters taught their black students that learning to read and write wasn’t “acting white,” there’d be more of a black readership…

Jack
Guest

As public reference librarian I know for a fact that many black teens and children do not have library cards. And are happy with it.

Many blacks are incapable of returning materials at all, and lose their library privileges.

Dave H
Guest

Bit of a broad brush there.

jabrwok
Guest

“All” would’ve been a broad brush. “Many” is perfectly legitimate. I, too, am a librarian. Many of the students where I work are black. When they check anything out at all, it’s usually video games or movies.

That said, the white students don’t check out many books either:-(.

imnohbody
Member

Regarding the comment about having disposable income to attend workshops and such, given how many of these morons are trust fund kids or can scam Patreon feeds fueled by deluded fools who think that they can buy indulgences for being the ever-dreaded white cis male (yes, that part is sarcasm 😛 ) it sounds a lot like yet another case of projection, trying to pin their own sins (so to speak) on others to make themselves feel better.

great Unknown
Guest

What’s the racial breakdown among publishers and editors?

Richard McEnroe
Guest

It ranges from pale to pasty.

Christopher M. Chupik
Guest
Christopher M. Chupik

Paler than the cast of a Tim Burton movie.

Lawson
Guest

That “diversity in writers” article reminds of an article I read awhile back about not enough “POC” protagonists, which apparently equals a loss in hypothetical sales. No evidence for that assertion, though.

Shawna
Guest
What’s kind of funny to me is that if their assumption is that people want to read about characters they “relate” to and that people only “relate” to characters who match their outward gender/ethnic/ability stats, then how does it make sense to write books meant to appeal to people who are minorities at the risk of losing the majority of your potential readership? Again, based on their assumption that people want to read about people the same skin color/gender/whatever as themselves? I suppose the answer is that they think that it’s natural for everyone *except whites* to want to read… Read more »
Julaire
Guest
Following that assumption to its (il)logical destination: That makes The Hobbit or The Lord of the Rings impossible for readers to relate to as the stories are told from the perspective of hobbits, who aren’t human. While there may be some few readers of those books who are of a height with hobbits, they don’t have big leathery feet with thick curly hair on them. So there’s no reason for those books to be popular, particularly when much of the cast of characters beyond the hobbits are elves or dwarves. Or for that matter, how could they explain the popularity… Read more »
Shawna
Guest
I know, right? The entire basis of sci-fi/fantasy involves characters that aren’t human, much less African/Asian/whatever. I’ve never understood this whole “people need characters they can relate to” thing. Or how they post photos on Twitter of some little black kid holding up an action figure of a black superhero, like black kids are only just now having fun playing with superheroes. When I was a kid, most of the stories I liked best enjoyed things like talking animals. The fictional character I’ve always “related to” most is Data. In general, I don’t need to ‘relate to’ the characters in… Read more »
Shawna
Guest

I read once that Nick Cage got his stage name from Luke Cage. I wonder when someone’s going to accuse him of cultural appropriation.

richard mcenroe
Guest

Could be funnier’n hell if you remember some of the Bendis New Avengers scenes:
Spiderman: How do you know I’m not black under this mask?
Luke Cage: You’re kidding, right?

Shadowdancer
Guest

The fictional character I related to the most as a kid was Spock. My son’s favorite character is Data. I’m very much human, not Vulcan (it was the intelligence aspect that I liked); and my son is 100% organic.

I’m trying to track down copies of Starfleet Academy books with Data just for that reason.

Shawna
Guest
Oh, those Star Trek chapter books were fun. I liked those as a kid. Bit hard to find now, probably. I managed to collect them all, but it took a while. Found the last at a library book sale (the only one they had was the only one I needed; score!). One of the funny things about Data, and what makes him extra relatable to a child (and also makes any sexualizing of him super creepy IMO) is that when the series starts, he’s literally like three years old (at least based on his most recent ‘reboot’). My favorite TOS… Read more »
Shadowdancer
Guest

I was able to get my hands on book 1 and 2, and that’s it. I never saw any more, so it blew my mind to find out that there were more. I wish I could’ve gotten them all; I *loved* the story and the art.

FeatherBlade
Guest
When my brother was a wee lad, one of the girls in his class decided that the proper way to express her affection was to hit him over the head. He, logical thing that he is, assumed that this meant that hitting was an acceptable rule of engagement, and returned the favor. After my mother received a call from the girl’s father about it, she had to explain that little girls are very much like Klingons in the way they show their interest, but if a little boy behaves in the appropriate Klingon manner in return, the little girl will… Read more »
Shadowdancer
Guest

Ha! Didn’t he miss the love poetry (and ducking) though?

(For the record, I can’t blame your brother. Fair’s fair.)

Lawson
Guest

A very good point. I have a friend who wants to write on the side. The main character of one of his stories is an alien made of “glass” and lacks many human features. If the lack of a main character that physically related to the reader holds true, he will probably sell nothing.

This actually makes me wonder, if they are not already, will publishers reject stories that don’t explicitly state that the main character is a minority. If focusing on that over good stories leads to poor sales, what would the publishers do?

Shawna
Guest

Continue to die their slow death, leading to the continued rise of small pubs and indie authors.

Shadowdancer
Guest

See, your friend’s premise makes me wonder what he’ll write. So I’m curious enough to want to read. Plus points already!

DeTroyes
Guest
“…especially fiction that challenges your comfort.” Well, so long as they are defining what certain “codes” mean, allow me the opportunity to define a code of theirs: “challenges your comfort” is code for “shoving my politics down your throat until you choke.” To the Left, art must have meaning beyond mere entertainment in order to be called “legitimate”. Artistry and instruction are placed as qualities of greatest importance; how a story is told, who tells it, and what moral it transmits are much more important than the story itself. What they consistently fail to grasp is that the message and… Read more »
KHorn
Guest
“Dear God… I just kind of agreed with something N.K. Jemisin said (Correia checks outside to see if the 7th seal has opened). Nope, no blood rain or locust plagues. Well, I’ll be damned. ” Yeah well, I think I’ll go ahead and finish up my bucket list this week just to be on the safe side. “…but how many stories were submitted by black authors?” This is my biggest pet peeve with the race baiters. They insist on assuming that the distribution of attribute or outcome X must be distributed equally throughout the population and thus must reflect the… Read more »
DeTroyes
Guest

IIRC, didn’t one of the big publishers (Tor, perhaps?) accidentally release some statistics on gender in regards to submissions? To the effect that the ratio of male vs. female submitting authors was substantially male for Science Fiction, but substantially female for Fantasy? As I recall, the usual suspects threw a conniption fit because that punched a hole in their Discrimination Narrative?

Reziac
Guest
DeTroyes
Guest

Thank you! I only vaguely remembered the details (and as it happens, inaccurately).

Doug Northcote
Guest
Larry, your two rules for authors remind me of Clausewitzs “On War” In War (writing) things are simple. 1. Defeat the enemy. 2. Win the war. 1. Get good enough people will give you money for your stuff. (If I may paraphrase, GET PAID for a good story) 2. Find the people who will give you money for your stuff. (If I may paraphrase, GET PAID for a good story AGAIN, build following) The two are not mutually exclusive. How to achieve part 1. Perhaps to raid and destroy his logistics chain, ok great! So, how do we go about… Read more »
pharmadan
Member

Out of curiosity, would it be possible to include a group picture of the authors for the MHI anthology. A picture is worth a thousand words and would be more piece of truth that the haters couldn’t avoid.

FeatherBlade
Guest

What an optimist you are!
You severely underestimate their ability to avoid reality.

pharmadan
Member

well it would help a little bit at least

Christopher M. Chupik
Guest
Christopher M. Chupik

“Gay Peruvians Destroy Science Fiction!”

(The editor of Lightspeed glowers at his staff)

“Who told Correia about this? WHO???”

Akatsukami
Member

On a number of occasions, I got Civ I to generate the message “American civilization destroyed by Liberals”.

Robin_Munn
Member

By, what, moving your only settler onto a goody hut and having it spawn eight Liberal horsemen around you?

Andrew
Guest

Number of liberal horsemen spawned is proportional to the value of coin in the goody hut.

Aaron Nagy
Guest
It just boggles me that it’s always more about color of their skin then actually foreign/different styles of writing, these threads occur over and over again in SF/F group threads and in the ones that always talk about reading more diverse authors but I look at their reading lists and it’s basically a carbon copy footprint of what io9 or salon reads are which is surprise almost all white Americans/Europeans. Then they will cry about how they need to be more diverse and I’ll try to recommend stories that are actually from non-English speakers and are really fun and often… Read more »
Shadowdancer
Guest

Extreme Murder Hobo?! *bursts out laughing* Y’know, that is a good way to describe it…

Julie Pascal
Guest

“The best is when they actually do try reading it then quickly give up because it’s almost always racist/sexist in some way and my response is uhhh yeah I thought you wanted to read a story that wasn’t evil western culture.”

… and challenged your comfort.

Shadowdancer
Guest

Most of the socjus zealots whining that we don’t challenge our comfort zones wouldn’t read Shokugeki no Soma – a cooking manga that has equal opportunity fanservice (and disservice) as a visual running gag. Iron Chef methodology of cooking school and orgasmically delicious food.

trackback

[…] Defamation Suits Against Hillary According To Hoyt: Giving It All Away Monster Hunter Nation: Fisking The Latest Diversity In Sci-Fi Freakout RIPPED FROM THE HEADLINES Adam Piggott: If You’re Collecting Experiences, You’re Doing […]

Shawna
Guest
I went to a diversity panel at comic-con once. I even went up and asked a question. It was essentially, “So, as a white writer, what is it you want me to do?” The answer was basically, “Write non-white characters as well-developed, real people.” And I’m like, “So… what I’m already doing?” It was kind of confusing. They mostly seemed to want to get more non-whites to write/create, and it’s not like whites can go around telling non-white people they need to be more artistic because they owe it to their ethnic representation. “a YA author best known for her… Read more »
TBlakely
Guest

So publishers require authors to inform them of their sex and race? Wow, that is both racist and sexist.

Shawna
Guest

Got an email from my work recently where they want us all to fill out an optional diversity survey where we “self-identify” gender/race/disability/etc. I’d consider messing with them, but it’s not anonymous, and they know I’m not a paraplegic Indian male veteran. Since filling out the survey would in no way help the “diversity” score of our workplace, I declined to fill it out.

Dr. Doom
Guest
Yeah this push for diversity has left reality behind. How many black scientists are there? I think half of them are that Coates guy. Considering how few blacks get into science or even care about it, the lack of black Sci-Fi writers doesn’t seem mysterious to me. Do you like the way they insist on including blacks into activities they have no interest in? Apparently there is a major scandal that not enough blacks visit National Parks. My God, and you thought these things were optional activities didn’t you? Apparently if you’re black these activities are a National Crisis if… Read more »
Shadowdancer
Guest

I… guess not enough black kids got inspired by Geordi LaForge? Or Sisko? I thought Geordi was COOL, and since I’m only stating to watch DS9, I like Sisko the best out of the captains.

(Janeway is me in the morning though. Must have coffee.)

Shawna
Guest

Sisko is my fave captain. He’s so quirky. Plus, he’s a family man, which I like. And he had to face way more complex moral questions than any of the other captains, that I can remember. Plus Jake, his son, developed into his own interesting character and became a writer, so bonus points! (Oh, um … spoiler alert?)

Julaire
Guest

Sisko also has the notable point in his favor of punching Q in the face when he’s had enough of his taunting and arrogance.

Shawna
Guest

Oh, that’s right, LOL! Also reminded me of that outtake where Q asks Sisko if he’s going to ravish him. Which was both disturbing and quite funny.

Shadowdancer
Guest

“I’m not Picard.”

Best emphasis that he ain’t, ever.

perturbed
Guest

I was genuinely impressed with Sisko – he had more more responsibilities with fewer resources than either of the other captains before him, and the situations were much trickier and thornier too. By the time of the Grand Finale he’s clearly operating at a senior Admiral’s level of responsibility (much like 19th Century Royal Navy captains on distant stations), and if the series hadn’t tied up the way it did, he almost certainly would have got it.

Carbonel
Guest

These are the people who’ve made a profession out of scolding people for Having Fun Wrong.

I’m not surprised.

Carbonel
Guest

I just told my daughter about the blacks-not-using-Nation-Parks scandal, and asked her what she’d think if someone told her that because Studies (TM) had shown that women are under-represented in National Park usage, she had to go to one.

No binge-reading the Brotherband series, no Dr. Who marathon, can’t go to Jr. Lifeguard camp or spend a week building a cyborg Cosplay with her best friend. Nope: Your betters need you to represent Womyn at the National Parks. Chop. Chop.

The look on her face was priceless: “Those people need to go jump off a cliff!”

Shadowdancer
Guest

Yeah, ‘funny’ how the feminists who keep saying to other people ‘you don’t get to tell a woman what to do’ like to tell other women what they should do…

Jefferson Selvy
Guest

To me, as a prolific reader, authors don’t have a race. They are just raised lettering blocking the cover art. While correlation does not equal causation, I’ve found that if an author makes his/her race/gender important enough for me to remember, I’ll never pick up another book by them. I read. I love to read. I sink into a book and I am free from pain and stress for a blessed few moments. A good author prolongs those moments. Be a good author.

Shadowdancer
Guest

They are just raised lettering blocking the cover art.
XD so true.

Andrew
Guest
This topic always makes me think of the South Park episode about “Gay Cowboys Eating Yogurt.” It’s the one where the kids go to that snooty film festival and everyone is crying about their parody of “Brokeback Mountain.” I think that’s why people get upset about the push toward diversity. Not because of diversity per se, but because all the diversity stories that get pushed forward basically boil down to “Gay Cowboys Eating Yogurt.” Every time I see a story where there’s a “diverse” lead who is doing something exciting, and not being a Gay Cowboy Eating Yogurt, no one… Read more »
perturbed
Guest

This is why, for all the controversy that surrounded it, I like the way Star Trek: Beyond did the Gay Sulu Reveal. It gives us a handful of seconds in which we see that his partner is another guy. No words are said; no soapbox is mounted. Then he spends the rest of the film being Sulu again.

Andrew
Guest

Agreed.

For me, the acid test about whether or not all of this was really about diversity for most people or if it’s just an excuse for social domination (or, that between the two it’s MORE about social domination) was the television show Galavant.

White guy as the knight fallen down on his luck, Indian princess, black squire, the Queen was sexually promiscuous and unapologetic. Fantastic and hilarious show and I figured all of the people who normally harp on diversity stuff would hold it up as an example of awesomeness.

Checked around. Not a peep.

John R. Ellis
Guest

I adored Galavant, but I think the fact that it was a serial musical turned a lot of people off. I’ve found people who can swallow dragons without any trouble might have big problems with the leads breaking out into song.

Plus, the first season took a while before it got a consistent handle on the characters. It improved greatly halfway through and the second season was so much fun. 🙂

Julaire
Guest

Galavant was an awesome show. Pity it’s not getting a season 3. To add to your list of the SJW checkbox items it covered it also had ‘deconstruction of the princess myth’, a gay tavern, multiple strong women, and the white male ‘patriarchy’ king was a bumbling idiot. There were probably others as well.

But yeah, there wasn’t much touting of it as a ‘worthy’ show on any SJW front.

John R. Ellis
Guest

The king (played by the very talented Timothy O.) went through quite a bit of character development, which I liked.

MishaBurnett
Member
Since I finished my fourth novel about a year ago I have concentrated on short fiction, and I have published several. Mostly in collections that pay either a nominal fee ($5 is average) or not at all. While I do think it’s worthwhile for me to give away work at this stage in my career, and have picked up new readers for my novel series that way, I would not expect a new author to be satisfied with the kind of money that the short fiction markets I’ve encountered are paying. The one notable exception to this has been a… Read more »
mark
Guest

Giving away a short story is a good way to attract readers. Wen Spencer has a chunk of my money because of a side-story to her Tinker series in a BAEN free short-story collection.

trackback

[…] Walker always enjoys reading Larry Correia’s fiskings of what passes for conventional wisdom in traditional SF/F publishing. Alas, traditional publishing […]

Joe Doakes
Guest

Reminds me of the faculty at a local law school: they have a White Liberal, a Black Liberal, a female Liberal, an Asian Liberal, a Gay Liberal and they’re trying to decide whether to hire a Jewish Liberal or a Muslim Liberal – you know, to ensure they have Diversity in the faculty. The thought that Diversity might involve a Conservative is . . . unthinkable.

Joe_Miller_@joethefatman1
Member

And THIS is what matters.

“The market wants to be entertained. They want to have fun. They want emotion. They want to get sucked in because they can’t put the book down and stay up way too late reading. They want rousing stories. They want heroes and villains. They want characters they can cheer for.”

I could not care less about your F”N race. I want a good story period.

Shawna
Guest

To be fair, I *would* care about their race, if the author was an elf. I’d be like, “Wow, an elf living in modern America and writing military sci-fi. Sold.”

Shadowdancer
Guest

Can you imagine one of Larry’s trailer trash elves doing just that? REBEL ELF WRITER.

Shawna
Guest

Sub-plot for Tanya, maybe?

Richard McEnroe
Guest

If she gets her GED: “If You Were a Minotaur, My Love…”

Jack Wylder
Guest

Bullman. Don’t use the ‘M’ word…

Leah
Guest
just to be a devils advocate (and because that IS actualy my opinion) sometimes a story that challenges your comfort and good story are not mutually exclusive. it doesn’t need to be a lecture either. like… I do quite a few things that challenge my comfort – for fun and to expand my horizons. like.. I’ve been practicing watercolors in the last couple of weeks. I’m very, VERY uncomfortable with watercolors, but I love the way they look when they are well done, so I’m pushing through fear and discomfort to learn. for example. another example – stranger things is… Read more »
The Phantom
Guest

Yeah, but “challenging the reader’s comfort zone” is SJW code for “Add some gross shit that will make them want to barf.” That’s “challenging” for them, they go right to the torture end of the sewer.

Whereas you’re talking about adding something of value, like the real research on Dark Matter as it applies to interstellar space flight, or how to make a weapon out of two sticks and a wad of gum. Something -interesting- God forbid.

mark
Guest

Its also code for “lecture the reader on why they and their core beliefs are evil”

Joe in PNG
Guest

I do wonder if the typical Leftist that advocates “going outside of your comfort zone” actually reads things that truly challenge their worldviews, things that honestly make them have to mentally come to the defense of what they believe.

Some people do, and kudos to them. But that is rare.

Bugmaster
Guest
I am one of those hateful leftists (although an anti-SJW, so I am hated by both sides); can you recommend some well-written books that will legitimately challenge my worldview ? I’m not being sarcastic or anything, I’m genuinely curious. To give you an example of my own, I’ve really liked Cyteen. I don’t want to spoil the book too much, but still: It starts off by presenting you with a character who is almost a Complete Monster, and whose actions are revolting. Then it shows you another character, whose life you get to follow from early childhood to adulthood. You… Read more »
Robin_Munn
Member
If you’re looking for books that will challenge your worldview, you could try The Road to Damascus, by John Ringo and Linda Evans. You can tell that the authors are definitely against the demonize-the-Other tactics used by the revolution in their book, but they don’t let any real-world parallels creep in — so it’s not a screed against any particular political philosophy (unless you count “whipping up fear and demonizing the enemy to justify taking political power” as a philosophy, because they definitely come down HARD against that one). Instead, it challenges you to draw the real-world parallels yourself. Which… Read more »
Bugmaster
Guest

Awesome, thanks, I’ll check it out. FWIW, I think that Robert Heinlein (Starship Troopers, the book not the movie) and Joe Haldeman (The Forever War) may have explored similar themes; and so did Glen Cook (in pretty much the entire Black Company series); though I haven’t read The Road to Damascus yet, so I could be wrong.

John C Wright
Guest

MAN WHO WAS THURSDAY by G.K. Chesterton; ON BLUE’S WATERS by Gene Wolfe; THAT HIDEOUS STRENGTH by C.S. Lewis, for starters.

Bugmaster
Guest

Ok, I’ve got to admit: I didn’t read That Hideous Strength, because the previous two books put me into some sort of a catatonic trance. Especially the second one. You know that special effect they sometimes use in movies, where the camera focuses on a falling drop of water as time slows to a crawl and then stops ? That’s what attempting to read Perelandra felt like. It was like gazing onto a physical manifestation of absolute boredom.

I haven’t read The Man Who Was Thursday, but I know it’s supposed to be a classic, so I probably should…

Bjorn Hasseler
Guest

That Hideous Strength is really different from the first two.

perturbed
Guest

Out of the Silent Planet was enough for me – it told me Lewis was a deep misanthrope who despised the wickedness of his own species so much he had come to despise the species itself. I find many fanatical dog lovers are the same; they hate people with a passion.

Robin Munn
Guest
I… um… what? C.S. Lewis, a misanthrope? I… don’t think you’re understanding his thought process correctly, here. I suggest not giving up on him after one misunderstood book. Try reading something else of his — say, The Abolition of Man, which is a book-length rant against SJWism in education (at least, the SJWism of his day, which looked a little different than it did today). A sample: The operation of The Green Book [the children’s textbook that started Lewis on his rant] and its kind is to produce what may be called Men without Chests. It is an outrage that… Read more »
Joe in PNG
Guest
Bugmaster, your question now moves us into the whole problem of message fiction- where telling a story takes second place to author tracts, anvilicious morals, and preaching. To properly challenge your worldview, you need to turn to the pages of history, and read it with the knowledge these people are just like you. It is far too easy for some to see the past as a bunch of silly superstitions we have outgrown, and then walk right into the exact same catastrophes they did. Likewise, read up on some of the classic philosophic text that underpin the US Constitution- Locke,… Read more »
Shadowdancer
Guest

People who don’t read history, get it whitewashed, AND ignore its lessons, will repeat its’ catastrophes.

Negative population growth was a problem for the Romans; Romans aborted, and/ or practised infanticide, to enjoy the ‘wealth afforded by childlessness.’

Gee, that sounds familiar…

Bugmaster
Guest

I disagree with your assumption that “preachy tracts” and “nonfiction” are the only possible options. Consider Ender’s Game, for example: I think it does manage to present a specific philosophy in an effective way, without descending into the abyss of a Chick Tract.

Joe in PNG
Guest

Personally, I tend to get as annoyed by obvious messaging from my side as much as from the other, so I am not the best guy to ask for good, Right/Libertarian message stories… or good Left stories for that matter.

Bugmaster
Guest

I think that Michael Flynn’s Firestar does a good job of promoting (a version of) libertarianism, as well as deprecating some leftist ideas, without being anviliciously preachy. Sadly, the sequels aren’t nearly as good as the original book (not because of any extra preachiness, mind you; they just aren’t written as well).

Semiba
Guest

Not so much political, but if you read the book, “The Blade Itself” and its two sequels, it really challenges the concept of what it means to be a hero (but you have to read all three for the full effect). Be prepared for a dark journey, though.

Bugmaster
Guest

Yes ! That entire First Law trilogy was amazing, but you’re absolutely right — it doesn’t work unless you’ve read all three books to the very end.

The author also has a young adult trilogy with similar themes, which starts with Half a King; once again, you need to read to the end to get the full effect. Being a YA trilogy, though, it doesn’t quite deliver the same gut-punch as First Law.

Shadowdancer
Guest
Yeah, but you chose to do this. You knew what would be a challenge to *your* comfort zone, and *you* have the option of stopping it. You’re totally in control at every point. You also have the option of choosing ‘I want a nice thing that I enjoy in my comfort zone to do/read/watch today’ – ergo you get to choose what you do in your free time. But that’s not the same thing that’s being advocated by the SJWs hectoring for ‘challenging comfort zones.’ It’s more on the realm of “if you really supported gay people, you’d at least… Read more »
trackback

[…] “If I was a gay Peruvian, I’d want to be thought of as a good author. Not a Gay Peruvian aut… […]

Lester Carthan
Guest

Writers throughout history have made up biographical information for the sake of book sales. Men pretend to be women, women pretend to be men, ages, background information all of it changes. A lot of writers write under a different name for each genre they work in. Then there the whole ghost writing issue.

As a black person this is a non-issue for me with one big exception. There are writers I love whose works I will never get to enjoy because they are written in another name.

TheWriterInBlack
Guest

If you want to sell genre romance (or in any of the various subgenres) you pretty much have to publish under a woman’s name.

But nobody complains about that.

Shawna
Guest

Which is kind of unfortunate. I, as an occasional romance reader, would be interested in reading romance written by a man. I mean, men are one half of the usual romance equation, so it seems like sometimes getting their perspective on it could be interesting.

TheWriterInBlack
Guest

Oh, plenty of men write romance and publish it. They just have to use a woman’s name to do so.

Jeff_Duntemann
Member

Indie will eventually fix this.

Lawson
Guest

Is there any empirical evidence to show that publishing under a woman’s name would increase sales?

Julie Pascal
Guest
For romance? I think that you might sell romances written with a studly male name just because some women are curious but the culture is really strongly a “girls” thing. There used to be men who published romance with male names but I’d guess that the closest anyone gets these days is a somewhat ambiguous pen name. But stuff goes in cycles. I think when I started reading romances (I remember one specifically written by a man, supposedly) they were all single POV and the reader, just like the heroine, never actually knew what the romantic hero was thinking or… Read more »
Shadowdancer
Guest

My favorite romance author spends equal time in both the male protagonist and the female protagonist’s heads, describing to the reader their emotions and thoughts. She just published her 100th book.

Another romance series I read was actually recommended to me by a very hetero male friend of mine, because he loved the character interactions. “She shot him!” Since he’s the guy who got me into reading Dresden Files, well… how could I resist?

Shawna
Guest

Was it The Devil’s Cub? Because that’s the first romance I read, because it was recommended by my male cousin, and I’m pretty sure that happens in that book (been a while now since I read it).

Maybe this is the trick to getting more guys to read romance: have one of the couple shoot the other.

Shadowdancer
Guest

It was a Loretta Chase novel. Lord of Scoundrels, maybe?

trackback

[…] those who think that “people of color” can’t make it on their own. Because that’s, you know, “progressive” thinking, and always has […]

Phil Dayton
Guest

I’ve been noticing that the POC is under-represented in the Pokemon Go craze. I think we should all redouble our efforts in getting more POC involved in Pokemon Go, even though the pay sucks.

Achillea
Guest

You don’t encounter many non-white geocachers, either. I’ve been caching for years and been to dozens of events (including mega events with hundreds of cachers) and have met maybe three.

TallDave
Guest
On my Kindle, everyone is black. And Helvetica. My family has branches in all the major races and most of us are multiracial, but increasingly the less I identify with whites the more I sympathize with them because of all the constant incitement. Whites gifted us all with modern civilization, they just did, everyone else’s contributions were relatively minor. You can find all sorts of fault with how whites have behaved historically, but let’s face it, nearly everyone else was worse. Whether you are grateful to or resentful of whites has a lot more to do with you than them.… Read more »
Robin_Munn
Member

+1 just for that opening sentence. “On my Kindle, everyone is black. And Helvetica.” I’m going to borrow that one, if you don’t mind.

Urusigh
Guest
Wait, what ethnicity is Owen Z. Pitt again? I honestly don’t remember. I love the MHI books, but I couldn’t tell you the ethnicity of any of the main cast from memory. Unless it’s a specific plot point for some reason that kind of thing just doesn’t stick with me. Likewise, I don’t know the author’s ethnicity (or gender for that matter, the prevalence of psuodonyms in publishing being what it is). This oversight never impaired my enjoyment of the MHI books in any way. Cool cover, interesting blurb, great hook, strong characters, and “can’t put this down, up way… Read more »
Arwen
Guest

“Wait, what ethnicity is Owen Z. Pitt again?”
Badass, like most of the MHI crew.

thomashewlett
Guest

My whole takeaway from this: there’s a MHI anthology coming out.

frankpackard
Guest

I know, right? People should make Larry mildly pissed off more often, that’s when he lets things slip.

Shawna
Guest

I’m pretty sure he has been talking about it for a while. Right? I’m not just imagining that, am I?

Jack Wylder
Guest
Shawna
Guest

Okay, so not for as long as I thought. Just seems longer because I heard about it at a book signing what seems like ages ago.

David Hickenbotham
Guest
All black people have to become Sci-Fi authors now even if they’d rather be engineers or teachers or sports icons or President of the United States, just so we can feel better about the diversity of the authors of the books we read. How unfortunate. I remember hearing a comedian talking about why there are so few black people in the Winter Olympics (after one of these social justice rants came out) and it came down to the Winter Olympics being COLD. If all Black people don’t want to be authors or more particularly sci-fi authors, we should accept that.… Read more »
John R. Ellis
Guest

The only SF magazines I ever see on the magazine/newsstand section (in the few stories that still bother to have such) are Analog, Asimov’s, and rarely “The Magazine of Science Fiction and Fantasy”.

I hardly ever see anyone flip through them, let alone buy a copy. I wonder if they actually make a profit or are considered “Loss Leaders” by the publishers?

DeTroyes
Guest
My understanding is (from listening to editors on panels) is that Analog & IASFM both break even but that’s about it. So long as they are not a major drain on resources, Dell Publishing is content to keep them going, tho both publications have had to make some changes to keep afloat. F&SF has been rumored to be on death’s door now for about a decade. Its basically an independent magazine, not owned by any publishing firm except itself. I heard somewhere that their print edition is now down to less than 10k copies an issue, and declining. But despite… Read more »
Julie Frost
Guest
Some of the others are Nightmare, Fantastic Stories of the Imagination, Fireside (the ones wringing their hands over this), Apex, Beneath Ceaseless Skies, the Escape Artists podcasts, Uncanny, Intergalactic Medicine Show, Interzone, Daily Science Fiction, Nature Futures, and Shimmer. This just from a quick perusal of my spreadsheet of markets I consider pro-paying (though I actually have no idea what Interzone pays and Shimmer is a penny a word under SFWA’s lower limit for “qualifying”). There are a bunch of new ones on the scene as well. They’re all online, though, because magazine-rack short fiction has basically gone the way… Read more »
DeTroyes
Guest
I was basically using publications that issue dead tree editions as my benchmark, since the original post was about magazines at newsstands. I know there are a lot of electronic publications these days; I was even aware of some of the ones you mentioned. But frankly, I doubt anyone outside of fandom are even aware of them. Analog, IASFM, F&SF, and sometimes Clarkesworld are at least available at Barnes & Noble (I’ve only ever seen Galaxy’s Edge and Lightspeed at convention dealer rooms), so they stand a chance of reaching the general public. Forgot about Interzone; I think they still… Read more »
TheWriterInBlack
Guest

Does anyone know if Marion Zimmer Bradley’s Fantasy Magazine is still publishing

The magazine died when she did. I think they finished whatever they had in the pipe but that was it. She left a trust to continue the “Sword & Sorceress” anthology series which I believe is now self supporting (at least the volume that has one of my stories has earned out and is paying royalties).

John R. Ellis
Guest

Plus, here’s a fact: I sometimes work as an assistant editor. None of the submissions contain any info on the author’s skin pigmentation, ethnicity, etc.

No information at ALL on those details.

Frankly, I think a magazine that -did- demand that information would be looked at as creepy and a non-starter. <_<

Bugmaster
Guest
> Hell, lots of them are biased against anybody who didn’t drive their Prius with a Berkley Alumni sticker on My Prius gets 55 mpg while driving 79 mph, because I have the radar cruise control set to exactly 79 mph to avoid speeding tickets. I drive about 60 miles per day, so when I get bored, I turn off the radar and try to optimize power usage by looking through the HUD. Don’t knock it till you’ve tried it. Besides, not all of us can be highly successful authors, some of us really do need to save money on… Read more »
Don
Guest
I doubt if you’ll run right out and sell your current Prius, but if your goal is to save money, you might want to think about something before buying your next car. Since your trip is 60 miles a day, just to make the math easier, lets say you use 1 gallon of gas a day in your Prius. According to Toyota, a slightly larger (passenger volume) Corolla gets about 75% of what a Prius gets in mileage, which means a Corolla would use about 1 1/3 gallons a day. Over the course of a month, driving the Prius would… Read more »
TheWriterInBlack
Guest

My response when someone *cough* Obama *cough* suggested that people with older cars complain about high gas prices (back when it was near $5/gallon) should get a more fuel efficient vehicle: “You can buy a lot of gas, even at these prices, for the cost of a newer car. If one is a problem, how is the other not?”

Bugmaster
Guest

Um, yeah, I don’t make my automotive purchasing decisions based on what Obama says 🙂

TheWriterInBlack
Guest

Neither do I. Doesn’t mean I can’t mock them when they make dumb statements like that.

gmmay
Guest

You obviously don’t make them based on financial considerations either, despite your previous claim.

TheWriterInBlack
Guest

Math. It’s not just for breakfast any more. 😉

Bugmaster
Guest

Oh, you’re absolutely right about the mileage, but my goal is not just to have good mileage, but also to drive a sweet-ass car. I can’t afford a Tesla (nor can I take it to the mountains, really), so the Prius is a good compromise. There’s nothing wrong with the Corolla, but it still feels too much like a car, and not enough like a spaceship.

Bugmaster
Guest

Is The Fifth Season any good ? I don’t care about the author’s politics (unless they leak heavily into his work), I just care about the book. I was considering picking it up, but my free time is limited, so…

Heh
Guest

“Ashok Vadal, not white.”

Ha, I just finished this yesterday, it was AWESOME, I was entertained!

But somehow until you pointed it out just now, I forgot to notice Ashok (and everyone else in it) wasn’t white. Ooops, silly me!

TPC
Guest

This is so stupid because blacks read a lot, but it’s NOT SCIENCE FICTION. There are plenty of black people churning out the stuff black people want to read. Inspirational religious stuff, self-help, romance, and sports bios. None of that is sci-fi. Blacks who like sci-fi watch it or read manga.

Shadowdancer
Guest

Yeah but ‘they don’t count’ because those blacks *pretends to be SJW whining* “aren’t reading OUR super important artiste stuff instead of crappy mangas like they’re SUPPOSED TO!!!” *insert image of ranting tantrum here.*

In SJW land, the stuff that people want to read is the ‘wrong stuff’ thus doesn’t count as reading. ‘So there’s nobody who’s minority and writing and this needs to be fixed.’

Shawna
Guest

I know I actively avoid any books being marketed as “important”.

TPC
Guest

There are of course, exceptions, I’m just talking about the genres that a black person wanting to GET PAID will be likely to GET PAID in focusing on a heavily black audience.

And if you’re black and want to GET PAID not writing for a black audience, you can write novel-length in other genres and include black characters and do a lot better than with sci-fi shorts.

Bob
Guest

You know … if a white person never appeared on BET, I really believe that the overwhelming majority of whites wouldn’t mind or notice. Of course, how many buildings would be looted and cars torched if that went public …

CarlosT
Guest

How about this: Juan Rico, protagonist of Starship Troopers is NOT Hispanic. Heinlein hides the ball until almost the very end, when Juan drops casually in conversation that his native language is Tagalog.

I loved that little reveal, because it skews an assumption you’ve probably been making about the character, causing you to redraw his portrait in your head. The fact that it’s mere pages before the book ends really drives home the point of how superficial these things are.

Mark
Guest

Yes, your logic is sound, Larry; however, logic, as well as evidence and reason, have been shown to be instruments of western cultural oppression. QED, we’re wrong, they’re right, and we must be shouted down and tolerantly excluded.

TRX
Guest

Is there *any* way to see every complete comment instead of having to click-and-wait through “read more” and back again?

Lester Carthan
Guest
I find that on a desktop computer I see all the comments without having to click on anything. On mobile devices I have to click on a prompt. I think it has to do with advertising revenue. Each click shows people are actually reading it and seeing advertisements so that’s more money for someone. For example right now I’m looking at a facebook, google, twitter and wordpress icons while typing this and I doubt they got those icons on the page for free. I’m fine with all the advertisement because there no such thing as a free lunch and the… Read more »
Robin Munn
Guest

I find that on a desktop computer I see all the comments without having to click on anything…

Not me. Any comment long enough — and yours qualified, by a few words — gets the “Read more” link. And, more annoyingly, gets ALL HTML stripped, including paragraph tags. So it shows up as word soup instead of proper paragraphs. Highly annoying.

TheWriterInBlack
Guest

Any comment long enough — and yours qualified, by a few words — gets the “Read more” link

Same here. OTOH, the notifications problem I had previously with my main email account is fixed.

Robin Munn
Guest

I did a word count. The “Read More” link shows up after the first 100 words in any comment. If you keep your comment under 100 words, the whole comment will be displayed.

Jack Wylder
Guest
Jack Wylder