Link Lineup – End of 2020

Yes, this is a bit BTS heavy. Deal with it, darlings.


Welcome to the ‘omegaverse,’ the kinky erotica genre reimagining bodies

Speculative fiction around human mating cycles and otherworldly physiology date as far back as the mid-20th century, but in recent years, the omegaverse has spawned from writers in the Supernatural fandom. It’s since spread across the fannish world, appearing everywhere from the Overwatch fandom to the Marvel Cinematic Universe.

What makes A/B/O so interesting isn’t just its out-of-the-box premise but how it challenges our understanding of human bodies and physiology in order to create deep, lore-rich erotica narratives. Just as the sci-fi writers of the 20th and 19th century encouraged us to rethink the present by looking to the future, A/B/O reshapes our grasp on sexuality in everyday life.

Ana Valens’ insightful writing on sex, kink, gender, and different internet sub/cultures has been a true highlight of 2020 for me. I have learned so much from her work! Ana is also a delight to speak with and so when I saw her talking about Omegaverse and looking for people to talk to, y’all know I was there. I’ve spoken about it a ton, but Omegaverse has actually become one of my favorite tropes/settings in fandom – as a writer and reader – and so I was happy to be one of the sources tapped for this incredible primer! 

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Stitch Wraps Up 2020

A lot happened in 2020. While it’s been one stressful year, it’s also been a year where I’ve pretty much stayed booked and busy and writing. So for those of you who aren’t super duper online, here’s what you’ve missed in terms of content, milestones, and strange or stressful things.


January

Best Website Content:

Quick Coverage: John Boyega Ends 2019 With a Bang (And a Hearty ‘Fuck You’ To Rey/Kylo Shippers)

Aside from the kiss-and-dissolve, the majority of their intimate moments are fight scenes. Which is fine if you personally view fighting as foreplay but the whiteness leaps out about a fandom that sees violence – including kidnapping and the threat of torture – as a precursor of romance, but clearly reciprocated affection between Finn and Rey as uncomfortable… for her and for them.

Rey/Kylo Shippers: A New Look At An Old Face of Fannish Entitlement

It doesn’t matter that for Rey/Kylo shippers, The Rise of Skywalker provides more fanservice than an A.C.E. concert.

Because while they’ve gotten ninety nine percent of what they wanted from the franchise, they didn’t get the big thing that they really wanted:

Kylo Ren’s redemption in the form of an utterly unearned Happily Ever After where Ben and his tradwife Rey pop out little Skywalker spawn to perpetuate the Skywalker family’s genetics and their shitty legacy.

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Meme-Ing For A Reason #4 – Fandom’s Been Racist

The “always has been meme” with the earth representing fandom and the first astronaut asking “wait, it’s all racist?” with the second astronaut holding the gun and saying “always has been”.

Fandom has always been racist.

All fandoms.

Even your fandom, whatever it may be.

Both because there are no fandoms that are actively anti racism by default and because the shape of fandom discourse in 2020 is that folks are actually super comfortable with being racist in defense of fandom. You can go back to transformative fandom at its birth and guess what’d be there… lots or racism.

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Black People in Fandom: Cassandras in Action

In Greek mythology, Cassandra was a princess who got the god Apollo to give her the gift of prophecy but, when she refused to sleep with him (her end of the “deal” according to multiple sources), she was cursed to utter true prophecies that were never believed as that came through with devastating consequences.

Over the years, I’ve realized that many Black people in fandom (including performers and showrunners, not just fans) are treated similarly where they signal or even shout about a problem in fandom or with the source media… but no one listens until it’s too late and they can’t continue to ignore us… or it becomes somewhat profitable to pay attention to what’s been bothering or harming us for years.


The morning that John Boyega’s September 2020 feature in GQ magazine with Jimi Famurewa went up, I lost track of how many people messaged me about or tagged me in tweets related to the piece.

The tweets and DMs I got were from both Black fans and non-Black fans, all shouting because finally we had further explicit confirmation of somethings that I and other Black people had been talking about years: the way that the Sequel Trilogy put Finn’s arc on the back burner on purpose to focus on Kylo/Rey AND the antiblackness aimed at John from fandom (as a whole) harmed him.

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Meme-ing For A Reason #3 – Fandom’s Amy Coopers

It’s the “they’re the same picture” meme with the panel on the left saying “Amy Cooper lying and saying that Christian Cooper threatened//tried to assault her in her two 911 calls” and the right panel saying “white women in fandom saying that Black people in fandom talking about racism in fandom are abusive/toxic/bullies who have actually harmed them by having these convos” over yellow text that reads “corporate needs you to find the differences between this picture and this picture” with the bottom panel saying: “they’re the same picture”.

I already made the Amy Cooper comparison back in June in Why Write About Fandom Racism At A Time Like This? where I talked about what the racism in the supposedly progressive queer/women run fandom spaces looks like:

It looks a lot like… Amy Cooper calling the cops on Christian Cooper and pretending that her life was in danger when all he wanted her to do was leash her damn dog, actually.

(And before you accuse me of “trivializing real racism” or whatever the actual fake woke set is calling it these days, understand that what Amy did and what the nice white women of fandom do are the same kind of behavior and they all weaponize their white womanhood for the same end: a permanent silencing of Black voices that they don’t like or agree with. I get to make comparisons like that considering that I’m subject to Amy Coopers in and out of fandom.)

I was right then and I am right now: there are white women and queer people in fandom who utilize their marginalization (womanhood or queerness, sometimes a blend of both with a splash of mental health issues and claims of trauma inspiring totes valid lashing out thrown in) in fandom.

They use their ability to inspire ATTACK-PROTECT urges in folks in the same way that Amy Cooper tried to utilize her white womanhood to get the cops to come in guns ablaze to protect her from… Christian Cooper’s nerdy ass asking her to put her dog on a leash.

The goal in fandom, as with Amy Cooper and various other cop-calling, hysteria weaponizing Karens, is to control who gets to speak, who is listened to, who is taken as an inherent threatening presence trying to control or harm others… and who should be.

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Meems Watches K-Dramas

I asked my wee niece Meems to fill y’all in on what she’s been watching and rewatching across 2020 (since I’ve just been bouncing between Love O2O and Romance is a Bonus Book) and the baby came through! Here are five dramas that my smallest nieceling has been circling across the year and some of the reasons why she liked them!


What’s Wrong With Secretary Kim

Main Actors: Park Seo Joon, Park Min Young

Available on: Viki

Summary:  Park Seo Joon plays an arrogant boss to Park Min Young. One day she tells him that she’s going to resign, after that he tries everything he can to make her stay.

What I Like About It: There is a lot of character development, you can see how some of the characters grow as people. This show does have some dark scenes, but it’s mostly light-hearted and funny moments. The romantic scenes were adorable and the OST was really nice as well.

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Urban Fantasy 101: Cop Country

The audio version of this was originally posted June 11, 2020 on Patreon. This version contains a reference to James Baldwin’s commentary in The Devil Finds Work that is not present in that one.


There are a lot of cops in urban fantasy.

In the biggest and most popular series, the main characters are either outright law enforcement – like my book bae Peter Grant in the Rivers of London series – or they’re like Anita Blake, characters who don’t actually have badges worth anything but are set up as The Law in their neck of the woods.

I’ve read dozens of urban fantasy books in my lifetime and many of the books hinge very closely on these main characters in law enforcement or who are adjacent to law enforcement or… who have very close relationships with cops. 

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Thread Collection: Third Wheeling (11/11/2019)

Tweet from 11/11/2019

One thing I genuinely hate because of fandom is “[Black Character who is obviously under developed] hooks up two of their clueless white friends and gets them to realize their love”

Because the Black characters are never written out beyond how they can help the white folks. Eve gets Bond/Q together. Sam gets Steve/Bucky together. Rhodey gets Steve/Tony together. Finn gets Rey/Kylo together.

The second I see a story where a Black character is turned into a sassy romance guide for a white ship, I just… get so pissed? Because THAT reduces them/us.

Fandom: We love [Black Character] so much! He’s a fandom favorite!

Also fandom: *really only creates content for [Black Character] that views them shallowly, relies on racial and sexual stereotypes, literally reduces them, and/or uses them to get a white ship together.*

Me: 🤔

Meme-ing For a Reason #2 – Blaming “Antis”: Easier Than Speaking Up Against Racism, I Guess…

The “Who killed Hannibal?” meme where Eric Andre represents “weirdos in fandom” shooting “space to talk about racism in fandom spaces” and then going “why did antis do that?”

Back in February, shortly after the big wave of Rey/Kylo fans pretending they were underogoing gender based oppression over shipping their ship because John Boyega roasted them, I saw an account that identified as anti-anti (fan/shipper) or “proshipper” make a tweet that was basically like:

“Sometimes, I wish that as an anti-anti I could call out bigoted works in fan and professionally released media, but then people will think I’m actually an anti out to censor fandom”

Recentlyl, I was making memes and I remember that I’d just (as in this half of 2020) seen the same set of people – way too invested in shipping for their own good – once again complaining that they couldn’t call out or speak about racism in their specific fandom spaces. This time it wasn’t because they feared being called an anti and accused of censorship… but because they were.

And rather than pause for a moment to think about how the actual problem remains racists in fandom, I once again saw people moaning about how “antis” (and again, anti what? In what fandom? When?) are the reason why anti-antis/proshippers can’t talk about racism in fandom in their own communities.

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Thread Collection: Like With Meghan, Coded Antiblackness Comes (1/11/2020)

Originally posted on Twitter January 11, 2020.


This trash article about Meghan and Harry is actually super relevant to what’s been going on with @JohnBoyega, the Rey/Kylo fandom, and coded racism from people in fandom/media that think we can’t see what they’re doing.

At no point in this article does the writer mention Megan’s actual race or mention her Blackness.

But that doesn’t mean that it’s not racist? Look at the second screenshot and how it continues the condescending attitude towards her.

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Music Video Anatomy #7 – 몸매 (MOMMAE)

Title:  몸매 (MOMMAE)

Artist: Jay Park feat. Ugly Duck

Setting: “MOMMAE” is set in a few different “places” (I’m using the term super loosely here). A dance floor in what almost looks like an abandoned club, a bed(room?) in bi flag colors, a tanning bed, a balcony, a pool, and what’s either a house party or a nightclub. It’s a video full of lots of lingering shots of women’s bodies in these places, as they’re dancing or lounging on every surface and you’re spending so much tieme looking at these women from the neck down that the body itself – the surface area revealed by the short shorts, sports bras and the like – could almost serve as a setting where the song’s themes play out?

Sound: It’s so helpful that Gray always drops a producer tag at the start of his songs. Like If I’m on shuffle or listening to a playlist and I hear that tag, I know I’m about to get some good music. Can that man produce things that aren’t absolutely enjoyable? I have yet to come up against an example!

Anyway, as long as I don’t actually look too long at the English translations for the lyrics, this is a great song. Looking at the lyrics – especially where Jay Park raps that “니 앞에 서면 비욘세 엉덩이도 납작해/When I’m in front of you, even Beyoncé’s butt seems flat – makes me want to lift and throw him.

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[Stitch Talks ish] Episode 9: Stitch Wraps Up One Hell of A Year

Transcript

0:00
Welcome to episode nine of Stitch Talks Ish: Stitch Wraps Up One Hell of a Year.

0:12
For this end of the year wrap up, we’ll be going over questions that I received from friends, and followers on social media. Some of them are from anonymous contributors; others are from people who I know because I- they attach their name. And across this, you’ll get a better understanding of what I’ve been up to in 2020, and what my vibes are at the end of the year. So stick around— lots of good questions coming up.

0:47
[Musical Interlude]

0:47
Our first question is from an anon: because of the very nature of Kpop a bunch of stuff about it isn’t an English. How do you handle that? Who do you go to for trustworthy translation? And is there stuff academic fan official, you would like access to that you can’t get?

1:15
So first, I do panic a bit, sometimes, when I’m looking for something time sensitive and I can’t find any reliable translator; because usually things like academic papers, or maybe critical articles, don’t get translations from the fan translators. But when it comes to, like, BTS, as a really good example, I utilize fan translators like Wisha. Her account is really good.

1:54
If it’s something small, I do have friends who I don’t mind asking. And, you know, they’ve been like, “I don’t want to see you post something that’s absolutely incorrect. So if you need help, like, reach out.” So I have friends who, who read Korean or who can understand it, like, listening to it possible— You know, some of them are Korean, and so I’ll ask them for help.

2:20
I also look to see, if possible, if the author of the post would be able to provide anything, because sometimes, with academic papers, there may be other versions. So, like, I look to see what they have going on.

2:37
And then, haha, when it comes to the stuff I would like access to that I can’t get: So if you’ve been paying attention across— well since 2019, really— but largely across 2020 I’ve been really just in love with Myoung-Sun Song’s Hanguk Hip Hop. She wrote a two volume book (like two books… that’s how that works) about hip hop in Korean, and I want it desperately— desperately. And there is no English translation. I don’t know if it’s something she intends to translate, or have translated, in the future.

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Meme-ing For a Reason #1 – Is This A Reason Not To Care?

I love making memes about fandom and my experiences in fandom. Have a meme.


The “Is this a pigeon” meme with the a thirteen year old weeb mistreating people over shipping as the butterfly and adults in fandom gesturing at the weeb-butterfly and going, “is this a reason not to care about an unrelated conversation about racism in fandom?

I think it’s really funny (but like in a morbid way) when I see someone using a twitter user as an example of how bad all “antis” are (where anti can mean anything from someone harassing someone over ships to someone that dislikes a character or trope to… someone writing about racism in fandom) and that “antis” need to handle this person because there’s apparently a hive mind afoot…

And I then click through to go block and report the person because it’s my thing and then the “anti” in question is like a thirteen year old weeb shouting about a ship from a show they shouldn’t be watching in the first damn place.

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