ysabetwordsmith: Cartoon of me in Wordsmith persona (Default)
Here's a great essay about diversity in publishing, especially young adult books. My favorite quote: “The publishing industry looks a lot like these best-selling teenage dystopias: white and full of people destroying each other to survive.” Wowch, nailed it.

There's a problem when an industry lacks diversity: “None of these agents look like me,” she said, “and they don’t represent anyone that looks like me.” ... “What if they don’t get what I’m doing?” While it's possible for people to reach understanding across cultural lines, it is much easier for people to understand each other when they share a lot of common ground. Lack of diversity among gatekeepers (agents and editors) therefore undermines access and representation.

Now here are two quotes from advantaged people in the industry: "I think the change is going to have to come from within those who are affected,” and Another agent, when asked why less than 1% of her submissions were from people of color, captured what seems to be the publishing industry’s general attitude in just 10 words: “This seems like a question for an author to answer.” Both of those are right. In order to work, social change must incorporate the views and needs of the people affected; top-down solutions tend to be offensive and ineffective.

However, that doesn't mean everyone else can just abdicate all responsibility. You have to look for the part of the problem that lies within YOUR reach. In this case, it means engaging a conversation about unmet needs. The industry should be asking, "If people of color don't read or buy books, why not?" (They have less access to education, fewer books starring characters like them, less disposable income, etc.) And then ask, "What would help fix that?" If a question is for authors to answer, then agents and editors should in fact be asking authors that question, and listening to the answers.

And here it is in the essay: The question industry professionals need to ask themselves is: “How can I use my position to help create a literary world that is diverse, equitable, and doesn’t just represent the same segment of society it always has since its inception? What concrete actions can I take to make actual change and move beyond the tired conversation we’ve been having for decades?”

Of course, there are many issues in publishing, as in society. Most people will pick one or two favorites to focus on. Maybe they want to deal with sexism or classism rather than racism. Maybe they want to focus on books that will hook people who rarely read. Everybody doesn't have to deal with every problem, but every problem should have somebody working on it.

Me, I'm weird as usual; I'm the one waving a broom and shouting, "Fight ALL the oppressions!"  What am I doing?  Sure, I write characters from all different cultures, because I'm a mix.  But I also promote  projects by a wide range of creators.  Word of mouth advertising is really, really important.  I may not have a lot of money but I make one hell of a barker.

This is an area where crowdfunding can help.  You can support creative people of color.  You can ask for ethnic characters or plot structures.  You can look for projects to fund a book for distribution.  Yes, there's a filter, but we don't have to go through that bottleneck anymore.  We can go somewhere else.  The market is a lot more diverse than the dinosaurs believe.  They're standing in the breach?  Fine.  Let them have it.  Go somewhere else, go where there are people, and get their attention.  There are niches with almost no representation and therefore minimal competition.  Go fill them.  People are starving for stories about characters similar to themselves.  Feed a cat, gain a cat.
ysabetwordsmith: Cartoon of me in Wordsmith persona (Default)
This story belongs to the series Love Is For Children which includes "Love Is for Children," "Eggshells," "Dolls and Guys,""Saudades," "Turnabout Is Fair Play," "Touching Moments," "Splash," "Coming Around," "Birthday Girl," "No Winter Lasts Forever," "Hide and Seek," "Kernel Error," "Happy Hour," and "Green Eggs and Hulk."

Fandom: The Avengers
Characters: Phil Coulson, JARVIS, Clint Barton, Tony Stark, Steve Rogers, Natasha Romanova, Bruce Banner.
Medium: Fiction
Warnings: This story is mostly fluff, but it has some intense scenes in the middle. Highlight for details. These include dubious consent as Phil and JARVIS discuss what really happened when Agent Coulson hacked his way into Stark Tower, over which Phil has something between a flashback and a panic attack. They also discuss some of the bad things that have happened to Avengers in the past, including various flavors of abuse. If these are sensitive topics for you, please think carefully before deciding whether to read onward.
Summary: Uncle Phil needs to pick out pajamas for game night. He gets help from an unexpected direction.
Notes: Service. Shopping. Gifts. Artificial intelligence. Computers. Teamwork. Team as family. Friendship. Communication. Hope. Apologies. Forgiveness. Nonsexual ageplay. Nonsexual intimacy. Love. Tony Stark needs a hug. Bruce Banner needs a hug. #coulsonlives.

Begin with Part 1, Part 2, Part 3, Part 4, Part 5, Part 6, Part 7, Part 8, Part 9, Part 10, Part 11, Part 12, Part 13, Part 14, Part 15, Part 16, Part 17, Part 18, Part 19, Part 20, Part 21, Part 22, Part 23, Part 24, Part 25.

Read more... )
ysabetwordsmith: Damask smiling over their shoulder (polychrome)
This poem was inspired by the "Free Space: Mirrors" square on my 8-13-13 card for the [community profile] origfic_bingo fest. It has been sponsored by Anthony & Shirley Barrette. It belongs to the series Polychrome Heroics.

Read more... )
ysabetwordsmith: Cartoon of me in Wordsmith persona (Default)
 Word meanings can shift over time.  Sometimes this is good, other times not so much.  I'm often bemused by "decimated" to mean "mostly or wholly destroyed."  It really means "1/10 destroyed."  LInk courtesy of my partner Doug.
ysabetwordsmith: (Karavai)
This is the freebie for the March Muse Fusion over in Torn World. It was inspired by the prompt "Ressa off the clock."


"Off the Clock"


Ressa treasures the time
after hours when she does not
have to be Ressa the Clerk
or Ressa the Carnal Guild worker.

She can let her hair down,
a fall of straight brown silk
that covers her back like a shawl,
and brush it until it shines.

She can fill the tub with hot water
and pour scented oil over the surface
so that curls of white steam rise up
over the rainbow shimmers.

Some nights, Ressa soaks for an hour,
fantasizing what it would be like
if Bai were free to climb in with her
without worrying about entanglements.

She imagines how he would
play with her hair, so gently,
washing and rinsing the dark mass,
then brushing it out as it dried.

But she is alone in her bath,
as always, so some nights
she just washes quickly to get clean
and then climbs into bed.

ysabetwordsmith: (Karavai)
The rules and card are up for Muse Fusion Bingo!  Creators can start claiming squares and making stuff.

UPDATE 4/17/14: Woohoo!  We have six creators active.  The top row has all been claimed or filled, so if the rest of the claims pan out, we've got our bingo.


What I Have Written

"Off the Clock" -- the freebie for this session shows Ressa relaxing alone.

"From White to Blue" -- 10 lines, Buy It Now = $5
Triangle flowers bloom in spring.

"Sharing a Round" -- 630 words, Buy It Now = $18.90
Lenarai distributes scarce resources and a lesson in manners.

"Stalking Sleep" -- 28 lines, Buy It Now = $15
Long summer days can cause insomnia; there are several remedies for this.

"Fall of Duty" -- 1,400 words, Buy It Now = $42
A repairman strives to solve a power outage in the City of Lights.
ysabetwordsmith: Cartoon of me in Wordsmith persona (Default)
 [personal profile] ariestess is holding a one-card draw today.  Crowdfunded divination is fun!
ysabetwordsmith: Cartoon of me in Wordsmith persona (Default)
This story belongs to the series Love Is For Children which includes "Love Is for Children," "Eggshells," "Dolls and Guys,""Saudades," "Turnabout Is Fair Play," "Touching Moments," "Splash," "Coming Around," "Birthday Girl," "No Winter Lasts Forever," "Hide and Seek," "Kernel Error," "Happy Hour," and "Green Eggs and Hulk."

Fandom: The Avengers
Characters: Phil Coulson, JARVIS, Clint Barton, Tony Stark, Steve Rogers, Natasha Romanova, Bruce Banner.
Medium: Fiction
Warnings: This story is mostly fluff, but it has some intense scenes in the middle. Highlight for details. These include dubious consent as Phil and JARVIS discuss what really happened when Agent Coulson hacked his way into Stark Tower, over which Phil has something between a flashback and a panic attack. They also discuss some of the bad things that have happened to Avengers in the past, including various flavors of abuse. If these are sensitive topics for you, please think carefully before deciding whether to read onward.
Summary: Uncle Phil needs to pick out pajamas for game night. He gets help from an unexpected direction.
Notes: Service. Shopping. Gifts. Artificial intelligence. Computers. Teamwork. Team as family. Friendship. Communication. Hope. Apologies. Forgiveness. Nonsexual ageplay. Nonsexual intimacy. Love. Tony Stark needs a hug. Bruce Banner needs a hug. #coulsonlives.

Begin with Part 1, Part 2, Part 3, Part 4, Part 5, Part 6, Part 7, Part 8, Part 9, Part 10, Part 11, Part 12, Part 13, Part 14, Part 15, Part 16, Part 17, Part 18, Part 19, Part 20, Part 21, Part 22, Part 23, Part 24.

Read more... )
ysabetwordsmith: Cartoon of me in Wordsmith persona (Default)
A project I'm following, PoetTown, is making progress and currently doing a round of fundraising.  This is going to be a searchable hub site of poetry with crowdfunding options.
ysabetwordsmith: Cartoon of me in Wordsmith persona (Default)
This fascinating study suggests that belief, not just food intake, influences how the body responds to meals.  It's not just about the calories in the food.  It's about what we think  we're eating, and how we feel  about it.

So this seems like another place where mind over matter could be tremendously useful.  Meditation can impact other bodily processes.  One option for food satisfaction, therefore, might be meditating to improve those metabolic shifts to deliver better satisfaction with lower calories, and more efficient use of fuel rather than packing it into fat storage.  Unlike other dietary manipulations, this one doesn't cost money and it's likely to improve mind/body interaction.  Worth a try.
ysabetwordsmith: Damask smiling over their shoulder (polychrome)
This poem came out of the September 3, 2013 Poetry Fishbowl. It was inspired by a prompt from [personal profile] technoshaman. It also fills the "group dynamics" square in my Wordsmith Bingo card. This poem has been sponsored by [personal profile] janetmiles. It belongs to the series Polychrome Heroics.

Read more... )
ysabetwordsmith: Cartoon of me in Wordsmith persona (Default)
April's theme covers Heliopath’s World and Aurora’s World. March 2014 Round-Up lists the stories and other activities from the past month.

Fiction: The World Walkers: Quiar: The Case of the Counterfeit Enchantments (part 9, 82nd continuation) shows Lucille worrying about what Peric will do.
The World Walkers: Quiar: The Case of the Counterfeit Enchantments (part 9, 83rd continuation) has Peric fuming over the damage to his friend Bertram. A pissed-off empath is scary.
The World Walkers: Quiar: The Case of the Counterfeit Enchantments (part 9, 84th continuation) shows Quiar talking with Peric about Bertram's injuries and the counterfeiters.
The World Walkers: Quiar: The Case of the Counterfeit Enchantments (part 9, 85th continuation) introduces the confrontation between Peric and the surviving platypus. O_O
The World Walkers: Quiar: The Case of the Counterfeit Enchantments (part 9, 86th continuation) continues the conflict as Peric takes the information he seeks from the assassin.

Aurora’s World: Konir: Clay: Making an Informed Decision (part 4) features Clay and Jennica talking about how to deal with magical oppression.
Aurora’s World: Atecia: Opal: Talking to Margery (part 6) has Haidar telling Opal about settling the world.
Aurora’s World: Atecia: Calix: Felicia Blooming is about the onset of magic.
Aurora’s World: Atecia: Calix: Felicia Blooming (part 2) has Felicia arguing with her family about what to do now that she has magic.

Other Fiction: Aurora’s World: Ialaera: Jillian: Hunted (part 3)
Aurora’s World: Ialaera: Mirica: A Thief in the House (part 6)
Aurora’s World: Haerith: Xavia: Making a Decision (part 4)
Aurora’s World: Atecia: Aurora: A Death in the Family
Aurora’s World: Atecia: Aurora: A Night with Harrison
Aurora’s World: Ialaera: Mirica: A Thief in the House (part 7)
Aurora’s World: Ialaera: Mackenzie: The Thieves’ Hideout (part 3)

Heliopath’s World: Ildieu: Jasper: The Arrival of Kestrel (part 2)
Heliopath’s World: Ildieu: Falcon: Kestrel’s Kidnap
Heliopath’s World: Ildieu: Kestrel: Kidnapped (part 2)
Heliopath’s World: Ildieu: Kestrel: Kidnapped (part 3)
Heliopath’s World: Ildieu: Falcon: Kestrel’s Kidnap (part 2)
Heliopath’s World: Ildieu: Jasper: The Arrival of Kestrel (part 3)
Heliopath’s World: Ildieu: Kestrel: Kidnapped (part 4)

ysabetwordsmith: Cartoon of me in Wordsmith persona (Default)
Here is the opening post for the Solo Celebration Bingo fest running May 1-31 over in [community profile] allbingo.  It celebrates National Masturbation Month.  Vanilla, kinky, asexual, whatever floats your boat -- come enjoy your body for its own sake.  Play on the public card or make your own.

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