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26 April 2013 @ 01:28 pm
overwhelmed by sarcasm  

I was just briefly overwhelmed by sarcasm over on Twitter. Alastair Reynolds (whom I like very, very much) was commenting on stories he’s reading for (I think) a ‘zine, the first 3 of which he’s read have all been grim, dystopic, pessimistic near-future SF, and said, “Hey kids: you can do more than one thing with science fiction, you know?”

But by that time the sarcasm had already seized me. I said, “So does this mean the hopeful aspect of my planned climate change trilogy is Right Out?” and it all went downhill from there, with my nod to the fact that as things stand, as a woman writing near-future SF, I’m doomed to obscurity anyway, and that being hopeful about it will obviously only consign me to the gutter that much more quickly. I mean, it’s one thing for Kim Stanley Robinson, who is Big and Important and Respected, to be hopeful about the future, but me? Pshaw.

My friend Alan/bellinghman said I’d just have to redo it as “fang fucker” urban fantasy (causing me to throw tomatoes at him *laughs*), and, “Hey girlie, lay off them there Big Themes!”

The terrible, terrible thing is that there really does seem to be a great deal of that kind of real attitude out there. And of course I *don’t* believe that the barriers can’t be broken and that the marks can’t be made, whether it’s in gaining respect as a woman writer of science fiction or any writer at all offering a glimpse of a hopeful future, even if wracked by climate change. There’s virtually nothing that gets my back up like being told I can’t do something (even if it’s a generic “I” that encompasses women SF writers in general), and so I by God want to try.

And Al, bless him, said, “Good luck with it in any case.”

(x-posted from The Essential Kit)

dancinghorsedancinghorse on April 26th, 2013 02:36 pm (UTC)
Comes a point when you just have to say hellwithit and do it anyway. Your way. That used to be the kiss of death for an author bucking current publishing trends, but these days, one really -can- say hellwithit and do it anyway. 8)

Also, re. the gender thing, I'm of the faction that believes that just refusing to shut up, refusing to be made invisible, and refusing to stop being out there doing it, will eventually wear the big ugly Them down. We're worse off for not doing it, in short, even if initially we're ignored.
kitmizkit on April 26th, 2013 03:05 pm (UTC)
I've never particularly thought of, well, Doing It My Way, as it were, as being political in these sorts of terms, although it obviously is. The fact that it is is just a bit more good reason to do it, as if I wasn't gonna anyway. :)

The ability to go directly to the readers with any given project is *hugely* freeing. I actually think that's part of why I'm having such a hard time deciding what to do next: *someone* is going to buy it, at this point, whether NYC does or not.

Well, that and I've been going balls to the wall under contract for three books a year for nigh unto a decade now, and the prospect of having a wide open field to choose from is as daunting and bewildering as it is liberating and exciting.
Flitterbyflit on April 29th, 2013 12:57 am (UTC)
It was strangely depressing to realize that doing things that I wanted to do and was good at was somehow political.
kitmizkit on April 29th, 2013 06:34 am (UTC)
There's an argument for anything a woman is doing is political, but that way lies mental instability. :)