What Fandom Racism Looks Like: Misogynoir – Black Actresses Under Attack

Don’t forget to check out last month’s post and the introduction!

wfrll - misogynoir - black actresses under attack

  • U simple bitch. This is why comic book fans hate Hollywood. The criticism is not b/c U R an African actress but that ur 3 personas look too human wearing cheaply made costumes . U didn’t even care enough to Youtube the animated series and actually research the characters. (a comment sent to Anna Diop on twitter by user @Walter_Stylez on 4/13/2018)
  • I’m grateful you made starfire hideous and ugly, you are her first adaptation that looks less exciting. I’m sure this will make people choose batgirl over starfire now cuz she’s more prettier of a love interest. Dickbabs all the way!!! Thank you Anna for propping up my ship!!! – From twitter user @dickbabs3 on Twitter directly in response to Anna Diop posting an image of herself in a suit on 12/11/2018

Name a Black actress in a popular nerdy franchise and I’m pretty sure I can find you proof of people claiming that they:

  • Are too ugly
  • Aren’t talented enough
  • Are too “ghetto”
  • Don’t have enough chemistry (with the nearest white person)

To play the role they’ve been cast in.

Angel Coulby didn’t just have to deal with people claiming historical anachronism for her casting because Guinevere stems from a Welsh name that means “fair/white and smooth” in a show full of historical inaccuracy and sorcery.

She had to deal with a ton of “I’m not racist, but”s claiming that she was a terrible actress, that she wasn’t attractive enough to play Gwen, that she wasn’t young or refined enough… you know the drill. Continue reading

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[Stitch Likes Stuff] “Criticism Will Never Be Censorship”

Writers these days are awfully sensitive. I keep seeing published authors – and people who want to be published – wailing on social media about their fear of censorship and how we’re basically just a few bleak moments away from turning to book burning as a society.

Only problem?

When these writers wail about censorship, what they’re generally wailing against is… the right that readers have to comment critically about the content they’re consuming or prepared to consume. Readers criticizing a newly/unreleased book (via an advance copy) for unaddressed problematic or even bigoted content isn’t the same as a government deciding what people can create and consume when it comes to content.

Over on Intersections in the Darkest Visions in her article “Criticism Will Never Be Censorship“, my friend Lyana pokes holes in the very flawed idea that criticism is what’s really wrong with publishing these days… (instead of how publishing allows bigoted, problematic, and just plain flawed content to be bought, published, and promoted without thinking of marginalized fans prior to like… all of that).

It’s an amazing article across the board, but here’s one choice quote from it that should get you on your way over there to read the whole thing:

“Social theory is not something convenient you can toss away the minute it’s no longer profitable for your writing. Media doesn’t stop affecting reality because it happens to be fictional or in a more speculative genre. If anything, speculative fiction can have the most powerful effect on its readers because its foundation rests on the worlds we create, not the world that we currently live in.”

Go check out “Criticism Will Never Be Censorship” right now!

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[Book Review] Em Ali’s Graham’s Delicacies (+ Aesthetic)

Pretend this review went up uh… yesterday as I lost track of days again… Please and thank you.

Graham's Delicacies Cover

Em Ali’s Graham’s Delicacies is a super cute follow-up to her previous book Soft on Soft. This collection is home to a trio of interconnected stories about the various intimate relationships between the people work at the titular bakery.

I got a copy of the collection from the author in exchange for an honest review and the chance to read a book about non-binary cuties, so let’s get started by diving into the stories! Continue reading

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The Great Big Anita Blake Reread: Approaching the Ardeur (An Explainer)

The Great Big Anita Blake Reread_ Approaching the Ardeur (An Explainer)

As I’ve dragging my heels on finishing Narcissus in Chains (Anita Blake #10) for the next installment of my reread series, I’ve realized that there’s one small problem with how I talk about the Anitaverse. I keep assuming that you all have already read the series and are familiar with how everything works and therefore I don’t slow down to explain things that are probably confusing to the uninitiated.

So for the next two or three months, I’ll be writing mini-primers to three of the biggest worldbuilding bits that are semi-constant across the Anitaverse that I haven’t explained (but really need to before I keep going any further).

For this month, I’ll be covering the ardeur.

Content warnings for this primer: descriptions of sexual assault, “fuck or die”/”sex pollen” scenarios, rape culture, and sex-negative feminism framed as “sex positive” feminism, homophobia, a reference to an adult having sex with a teenager

“I thought you would be angry with me for giving you the ardeur, the fire, the burning hunger.”

The ardeur is first named in the thirteenth chapter of Narcissus in Chains after Micah assaults Anita in the previous chapter while she’s under her first brush of the ardeur.

In the chapter, after Anita shamefully admits to having sex with Micah (and again, it was rape), Jean-Claude confesses to having hidden this power from her and to denying his own hunger for sex because he know she wouldn’t approve.

Here’s the first of many issues with the ardeur.

Prior to this book, there’s nothing within the Anitaverse that tells us that Jean-Claude has this power hidden within his body. Continue reading

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Stitch Does Stuff in March 2019

Stitch does stuff in march 2019

I told y’all that February would probably be a slow month for me and well… it was.

Visiting my father was fantastic and I loved seeing my brother, sister-in-law, and the little niblings, BUT my already slow writing process got slowed down to next to nothing.

So March, for the most part, will be all about playing catch-up on my website and on Patreon.

So anything I didn’t get to do in February will be getting done in March and there’ll be new posts going up between my website, Patreon, and my Dreamwidth account (which I keep forgetting about).

(You can check out last month’s post for details about the pieces I’ll be trying again in March.)

I’ve got a busy month ahead as I continue looking for full-time work and prepare for PCA in April, but writing remains my biggest priority! I’m looking forward to meeting my goals this month!

Now, let’s get to the goods! Continue reading

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[Tweet Share] Threads from 2/23 – 2/25

I know there’s some overlap between the folks that support me on Patreon, folks who subscribe to my website, and the folks that follow me on Twitter, but tweets are hard to keep up with.

So I’m playing curator for a minute.

Earlier today, I got distracted from writing (which, granted, isn’t very hard to do) by someone attempting to whitesplain racism and fandom’s open lack of empathy towards Finn from Star Wars. This person even included a whole “this isn’t about race” thing even as they embodied one of the most racist aspects of the fandom: the lack of empathy towards Finn and refusal to actually engage with him as he is (rather than making up weird and problematic untruths about him).

(I’m calling this thread: What Fandom Racism Looks Like: The Empathy Gap in Action but I probably won’t actually turn it into a WFRLL essay because I don’t have the time. But I had the time today… to be a petty and furious Stitch.)

Bonus threads from days before:

A thread about anti-blackness in k-pop fandoms (re: rap/rappers)

“conveniently only caring about ‘real racism’ when fans of color are talking about racism IS RACIST”

double standards and empathy (kylo and finn)

on how white female characters (like jessica jones, wynonna earp, and peggy carter) on shows that are problematic wrt race REALLY don’t represent ~us~


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What Fandom Racism Looks Like: Misogynoir – Black Women in the Way

Don’t forget to check out last month’s post and the introduction!

wfrll - misogynoir - black women in the way

I may later eat my words because I haven’t seen more than season 1 of ToS or any of the movies but I hate that Uhura in the reboot is just a love sick puppy that follows Spock around. Like she doesn’t even resemble herself and she feels less of a character. (A tweet from twitter user @meganbytetweets from 2/4/2018.)

That sucks i just really hate iris and barry idk i rather ship him with linda, patty or caitlin lol (A tweet from twitter user Amber_G27 from 4/6/2018.)

Few things inspire more misogynoir than a Black female character that fandom thinks “gets in the way” of a ship involving two white characters.

When Zoe Saldana was cast as Nyota Uhura in the 2009 Star Trek reboot film series, fans were fine… until it was revealed that Saldana’s Uhura was also in an established and committed relationship with Spock.

Then it became a problem. Continue reading

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The Great Anita Blake ReRead: Obsidian Butterfly

Note: this installment covers and talks about racism. sexual violence, and gaslighting in mild detail for the most part. In the final part, I also mention some of the upcoming events in the Anitaverse including a reference to Anita having sex with an underage character and her sexual assault in the next book.

Obsidian Butterfly - 2006 Cover.jpg

Edward had saved my life more than once. I’d saved his more than once. Yet . . . yet . . . I’d miss Edward, but I’d kill him if I had to. Edward wonders why I’m so sympathetic to the monsters. The answer is simple. Because I am one.

I’m going to be perfectly honest with y’all: for many years, Obsidian Butterfly (Anita Blake #9) was the closest I ever came to having a favorite Anita Blake book.

Back when I’d first read it, just a little out of order and after all of the relationship drama and wonky sex scenes of the following books, I’d thought it was a captivating book that managed to push the relationship shit to the back of the book and focus on more human monsters instead of the main plot dealing with how awful vampires and shifters are (but telling us to empathize with them anyway).

Rereading it, I’ve realized that I was mostly… wrong.

In Obsidian Butterfly, Anita travels to Santa Fe, New Mexico after the ever-cryptic Edward – the bounty hunter and killer for hire that we last saw back when Mr. Oliver rolled into town a bunch of books back – calls in the favor that Anita somehow owes him because she… killed his partner at the time, a man who was actively trying to kill her. You know, because that makes all of the sense.

What’s waiting for Anita in Santa Fe?

Only a spate of grotesque murders and mutilations, Edward’s engagement to a woman that doesn’t know who and what he really is, henchmen with an axe to grind for their boss, and preternatural beings that are somehow even more messed up than the ones she’d left behind in St. Louis.

While a lot of things about Obsidian Butterfly don’t hold up almost twenty years after it was published, it’s actually… not that far from what I remembered and all in all, not an entirely un-enjoyable read in part because the main plot is one of the most solid across the Anitaverse to this day.

Strap yourselves in for another ridiculously long installment of my Great Big Anita Blake ReRead. I’ve got stuff to say about everything the novel did really well, what it still sucks at, and the one thing I wish I could carve out of the book with my bare bloody hands.

Continue reading

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Stitch Recs Romance Novel Series

Stitch Recs Romance Series

A week late, I’ve come to gift y’all with a list of five of my favorite romance/erotic romance series.

I hope they bring you as much enjoyment as they’ve brought me!

Happy (A Week After) Valentine’s Day!

Continue reading

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Horror Noire: Black History, Horror (A Review)


Horror Noire cover

Black history is Black horror.

– Tananarive Due

One of Tananrive Due’s comments early on in the Shudder’s Horror Noire documentary will live on in my mind forever because of how it gets right to the meat of the relationship between Blackness and the horror genre.

I love learning things and I spend a lot of time being afraid of things – especially the things I’m learning about – so Horror Noire, Shudder’s new documentary about the history of Black people (and Blackness) in the horror genre is right up my alley.

Back when I was watching Eli Roth’s AMC docuseries History of Horror and livetweeting some of the episodes, one of my recurring complaints was about the whiteness of horror history as they portrayed it. Across six episodes (I didn’t watch the ghost story one because I am a baby), there were very few experts and actors of color that got to let their horror knowledge shine. Continue reading

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