secondstringheroine

If you’re a boy writer, it’s a simple rule: you’ve gotta get used to the fact that you suck at writing women and that the worst women writer can write a better man than the best male writer can write a good woman. And it’s just the minimum. Because the thing about the sort of heteronormative masculine privilege, whether it’s in Santo Domingo, or the United States, is you grow up your entire life being told that women aren’t human beings, and that women have no independent subjectivity. And because you grow up with this, it’s this huge surprise when you go to college and realize that, “Oh, women aren’t people who does my shit and fucks me.”

And I think that this a huge challenge for boys, because they want to pretend they can write girls. Every time I’m teaching boys to write, I read their women to them, and I’m like, “Yo, you think this is good writing?” These motherfuckers attack each other over cliche lines but they won’t attack each other over these toxic representations of women that they have inherited… their sexist shorthand, they think that is observation. They think that their sexist distortions are insight. And if you’re in a writing program and you say to a guy that their characters are sexist, this guy, it’s like you said they fucking love Hitler. They will fight tooth and nail because they want to preserve this really vicious sexism in the art because that is what they have been taught.

And I think the first step is to admit that you, because of your privilege, have a very distorted sense of women’s subjectivity. And without an enormous amount of assistance, you’re not even going to get a D. I think with male writers the most that you can hope for is a D with an occasional C thrown in. Where the average women writer, when she writes men, she gets a B right off the bat, because they spent their whole life being taught that men have a subjectivity. In fact, part of the whole feminism revolution was saying, “Me too, motherfuckers.” So women come with it built in because of the society.

It’s the same way when people write about race. If you didn’t grow up being a subaltern person in the United States, you might need help writing about race. Motherfuckers are like ‘I got a black boy friend,’ and their shit sounds like Klan Fiction 101.

The most toxic formulas in our cultures are not pass down in political practice, they’re pass down in mundane narratives. It’s our fiction where the toxic virus of sexism, racism, homophobia, where it passes from one generation to the next, and the average artist will kill you before they remove those poisons. And if you want to be a good artist, it means writing, really, about the world. And when you write cliches, whether they are sexist, racist, homophobic, classist, that is a fucking cliche. And motherfuckers will kill you for their cliches about x, but they want their cliches about their race, class, queerness. They want it in there because they feel lost without it. So for me, this has always been the great challenge.

As a writer, if you’re really trying to write something new, you must figure out, with the help of a community, how can you shed these fucking received formulas. They are received. You didn’t come up with them. And why we need fellow artists is because they help us stay on track. They tell you, “You know what? You’re a bit of a fucking homophobe.” You can’t write about the world with these simplistic distortions. They are cliches. People know art, always, because they are uncomfortable. Art discomforts. The trangressiveness of art has to deal with confronting people with the real. And sexism is a way to avoid the real, avoiding the reality of women. Homophobia is to avoid the real, the reality of queerness. All these things are the way we hide from encountering the real. But art, art is just about that.

Junot Diaz speaking at Word Up Bookshop, 2012 (via clambistro)

Once at a festival I went to a discussion panel with sci-fi writers and someone asked them how they would write a pregnant character. 

And all three of the male panellists said that they couldn’t, because they literally couldn’t even begin to put themselves in the position of being pregnant. 

These are sci-fi writers. They make their living writing about space lizards from Mars, or alien invasions, or futuristic dystopia where everyone breathes through their fingers or whatever

Their entire function is to write unimaginable, crazy, out-there stuff. That is the whole point of their existence. And they couldn’t even try to imagine what it would be like to be pregnant. It’s seen as this inherently and totally mysterious female thing, that no man can ever even think of representing, even though as men they write things that none of them have ever or will ever experience. 

It made me realise - In the world of sci-fi fiction, alien experiences are more human than women’s experiences. 

(via reasonsforfeminism)

What I really hate most about what boys are taught about girls is the mysterification of women. Boys are taught that the only thing they should know about girls is where to insert themselves. Any other information, a good (cis, heterosexual) boy shouldn’t be interested in. If the boy shows any interest in women other than as sex objects, he is shamed for being unmasculine, or, paradoxically, a pervert. This mandatory mysterification prevents boys from thinking critically about gender roles, and it allows boys to see girls and girly things as beneath them.

It’s also living hell for young trans girls.

(via olive-baeddel-cuttlefish)

spaceoutthere asked:

Powers of 2.

2. How old are you?

23

4. What is your zodiac sign?

Pisces

8. Where are you from?

I am from Finland. I was born in Lappeenranta though I have lived most of my life in Lahti. Current Residence in Vantaa.

16. Favorite movie?

Frozen, maybe? Or maybe the Pirates of the Caribbean? Honestly I have no idea.

32. How big is your house?

For student apparment its quite big, two rooms and a kitchn. I mainly got it because of doctor’s letter that stated I was not fit for living in a dorm.

64. Are you a gossip?

Eeeeer, kinda. Though I do my best to avoid ever casting anyone in bad light or to share anything actually private.

spaceoutthere

Get to Know Me Uncomfortably Well

  • 1. What is you middle name?
  • 2. How old are you?
  • 3. What is your birthday?
  • 4. What is your zodiac sign?
  • 5. What is your favorite color?
  • 6. What's your lucky number?
  • 7. Do you have any pets?
  • 8. Where are you from?
  • 9. How tall are you?
  • 10. What shoe size are you?
  • 11. How many pairs of shoes do you own?
  • 12. What was your last dream about?
  • 13. What talents do you have?
  • 14. Are you psychic in any way?
  • 15. Favorite song?
  • 16. Favorite movie?
  • 17. Who would be your ideal partner?
  • 18. Do you want children?
  • 19. Do you want a church wedding?
  • 20. Are you religious?
  • 21. Have you ever been to the hospital?
  • 22. Have you ever got in trouble with the law?
  • 23. Have you ever met any celebrities?
  • 24. Baths or showers?
  • 25. What color socks are you wearing?
  • 26. Have you ever been famous?
  • 27. Would you like to be a big celebrity?
  • 28. What type of music do you like?
  • 29. Have you ever been skinny dipping?
  • 30. How many pillows do you sleep with?
  • 31. What position do you usually sleep in?
  • 32. How big is your house?
  • 33. What do you typically have for breakfast?
  • 34. Have you ever fired a gun?
  • 35. Have you ever tried archery?
  • 36. Favorite clean word?
  • 37. Favorite swear word?
  • 38. What's the longest you've ever gone without sleep?
  • 39. Do you have any scars?
  • 40. Have you ever had a secret admirer?
  • 41. Are you a good liar?
  • 42. Are you a good judge of character?
  • 43. Can you do any other accents other than your own?
  • 44. Do you have a strong accent?
  • 45. What is your favorite accent?
  • 46. What is your personality type?
  • 47. What is your most expensive piece of clothing?
  • 48. Can you curl your tongue?
  • 49. Are you an innie or an outie?
  • 50. Left or right handed?
  • 51. Are you scared of spiders?
  • 52. Favorite food?
  • 53. Favorite foreign food?
  • 54. Are you a clean or messy person?
  • 55. Most used phrased?
  • 56. Most used word?
  • 57. How long does it take for you to get ready?
  • 58. Do you have much of an ego?
  • 59. Do you suck or bite lollipops?
  • 60. Do you talk to yourself?
  • 61. Do you sing to yourself?
  • 62. Are you a good singer?
  • 63. Biggest Fear?
  • 64. Are you a gossip?
  • 65. Best dramatic movie you've seen?
  • 66. Do you like long or short hair?
  • 67. Can you name all 50 states of America?
  • 68. Favorite school subject?
  • 69. Extrovert or Introvert?
  • 70. Have you ever been scuba diving?
  • 71. What makes you nervous?
  • 72. Are you scared of the dark?
  • 73. Do you correct people when they make mistakes?
  • 74. Are you ticklish?
  • 75. Have you ever started a rumor?
  • 76. Have you ever been in a position of authority?
  • 77. Have you ever drank underage?
  • 78. Have you ever done drugs?
  • 79. Who was your first real crush?
  • 80. How many piercings do you have?
  • 81. Can you roll your Rs?"
  • 82. How fast can you type?
  • 83. How fast can you run?
  • 84. What color is your hair?
  • 85. What color is your eyes?
  • 86. What are you allergic to?
  • 87. Do you keep a journal?
  • 88. What do your parents do?
  • 89. Do you like your age?
  • 90. What makes you angry?
  • 91. Do you like your own name?
  • 92. Have you already thought of baby names, and if so what are they?
  • 93. Do you want a boy a girl for a child?
  • 94. What are you strengths?
  • 95. What are your weaknesses?
  • 96. How did you get your name?
  • 97. Were your ancestors royalty?
  • 98. Do you have any scars?
  • 99. Color of your bedspread?
  • 100. Color of your room?