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shannon j.l. [userpic]

Islands of Rage and Hope by John Ringo

September 12th, 2014 (07:22 pm)

Islands of Rage and HopeIslands of Rage and Hope by John Ringo

My rating: 1 of 5 stars

Ah, John Ringo. Go online and search 'Oh John Ringo no' and you will find a HILARIOUS review of Paladin of Shadows, his military fantasy series. The reader found himself chanting 'oh John Ringo no' at the more horrible bits.

There is also a 'oh John Ringo no' moment in this book.

A supposed responsible adult actually tells a pregnant TWELVE YEAR OLD girl she needs to have sex with her teenaged boyfriend so she'll be properly dilated when the baby comes.


Just for that the book gets one star.

This may not be the worst John Ringo book, but it's certainly not his best. It also has a 1/2 innacurate cover, annoyingly enough. (Back cover. You'll know why I went 'wtf' when you see it.)

Overall, it's very anti-climatic too. The battle for Gitmo was built up in the last book to be very dangerous, and they needed to be SUPER prepared. What we got was a cakewalk. Disappointing.

Oh! We actually get a canon bisexual woman in this book! But she's super dumb. And sadly shown as a bit of a slut, frankly. Into bondage.

Gee, thanks for the representation, John. Really.

I will probably continue on to book four. But I'm getting it from the library, no way in HELL am I buying this drek full price.

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shannon j.l. [userpic]

I'm not dead.

September 8th, 2014 (07:29 pm)


shannon j.l. [userpic]

Why we must strive for diversity in SF/F

August 12th, 2014 (05:49 am)

Originally posted by infinitydog at Why we must strive for diversity in SF/F

I get a handful of emails from fans each week. Most of them are laudatory; a few are critical. I try to limit my responses to either a perfunctory “Thank you,” or a “Sorry that story didn’t work for you,” depending upon which seems most appropriate.

Every now and then, I receive an angry e-mail from some self-righteous, aggrieved fan who simply must let me know why he or she plans to never read my work again. One of those arrived in my e-mail today. Here is the unedited and uncorrected content of the message, with the sender’s personal information redacted to protect the sender’s privacy:

Subject: I will not be reading any of your books.

David Mack will probable never read this email but I am writing it anyway.

I purchased and started reading your book, Harbinger and stopped when I got to the part where the Vulcan was having a homosexual affair with the Klingon spy. I deleted the book from my E-reader and will never purchase another volume authored by David Mack. You can call me a homophobe or use any other excuse you choose to write me off but the truth is homosexually is not universally accepted and I get to decided what I read and I choose not to read any more of your work. And on top of that no Vulcan would consider the situation “logical”. You can’t just remold the Vulcan persona to suit yourself.

I am just letting you know that you have lost at least one reader I am not looking for a reply.

[Name Withheld]

Well, the author of that e-mail might not have been looking for a reply, but he’s going to get one.

If he thinks the fear of alienating a few closed-minded readers is going to stop me from writing stories that feature and promote characters of diverse backgrounds—including LGBTQ characters, persons of color, and people who belong to ideological or philosophical minorities—he must be out of his mind. vanguardI’m a fucking Star Trek writer. Hasn’t he ever heard of IDIC—“Infinite Diversity in Infinite Combinations”?

Most of my writing work to date has been for Star Trek. Although the various television series could have done more in their respective times to portray ethnic and gender diversity, those of us who write the licensed Trek fiction continue to do our best to depict a more progressive, enlightened, open, and harmonious future, not just for humanity but for all sentient beings. One in which love, equality, and compassion are the touchstones of civilized society.

To that end, we’ve tried to make our literary dramatis personae more closely resemble the people of Earth. We’ve tried to include more people of African, Asian, and Southeast Asian ancestry than were seen in the televised and feature-film stories. We’ve tried to incorporate characters who hail from many cultures and viewpoints. We’ve tried to imagine a future in which people of all faiths have learned to live in harmony with people of other creeds as well as those who prefer to lead purely secular lives. We’ve tried to depict a future in which people’s gender identities are no longer limited to some arbitrary binary social construct, but rather reflect a more fluid sense of personal identity.

I will never be made to feel shame for doing this. I am proud that we’ve been able to do this. I know we’ve still got more work to do, and we can do better at integrating more diverse viewpoints and characters into the ever-expanding universe of Star Trek.

The author of the quoted e-mail tries to justify his screed by declaring that “homosexually (sic) is not universally accepted”. So what? Neither are human rights of a fundamental nature. In fact, I can’t think of any notion of justice or equality that is universally accepted. Why should that limit our vision of a more open, egalitarian, meritocratic future? I reject this aspect of the author’s rant as fundamentally illogical.

As for the author’s subsequent assertion that “no Vulcan would consider the situation ‘logical’,” I would rebut that Spock himself told Valeris in Star Trek VI: The Undiscovered Country, “Logic is the beginning of wisdom, not the end.” What Spock had learned that the author of this morning’s e-mail apparently has not is that there are many ingredients to wisdom — including, but not limited to, compassion and empathy.

Another reason today’s e-mail strikes me as ironic is that I consider the doomed romance between the characters he cited — T’Prynn and Lurqal — to be one of the best story and character arcs I’ve written to date. Writing T’Prynn’s tale of agony, conflict, and heartbreak, followed by her forlorn journey toward self-forgiveness and quest for redemption, was one of the most creatively rewarding efforts of my career so far. And this guy thinks I’m going to feel bad because his world view is too small to see the truth in it? All I can say, to paraphrase Neil de Grasse Tyson, is: I prefer my universe big.

Whenever someone asks, Why do we need to keep talking about embracing diversity in stories, and seeking out diversity in the authors and creators and portrayers of speculative fiction?, I will say it’s because too many authors and artists and filmmakers still get letters like this one. We need to work toward a better future in which no one would even *think* of writing an e-mail like this.

I’m not so starry-eyed as to think that day will ever come, at least not in my lifetime. I suspect that humanity will always have to contend with prejudice in one form or another. But that doesn’t give us license to stop struggling against it. It is exactly the reason we must press on and continue to do better, to demand better, to show that it’s possible.

The effort is its own reward.

Mirrored from

shannon j.l. [userpic]

So yeah, ten years....

July 8th, 2014 (06:06 pm)

My first entry. *lol*

It's... been interesting. I've been on LJ through a high period, it's decline, the great strikethrough and so on. And LJ itself has gone through various shifts, currently in russian hands I think. Ha.

I'm MOSTLY posting over on facebook, but I DO check in here daily.

shannon j.l. [userpic]

Let's talk about fanfic.

June 15th, 2014 (09:09 am)

Seanan McGuire on fanfic.

Originally posted by seanan_mcguire at Let's talk about fanfic.

So I've had this lovely link about fanfic and why some people may not be comfortable with it and why maybe those are feelings that should be examined sitting at the top of my link file for literally three years. I mean that. Three years and a month, it has waited for me to feel up to talking about it.

Y'know what? Sometimes you just gotta stop waiting.

It's no secret around here that I love fanfic, although it's one of the three Big Truths that I feel the need to reveal for the first time every six months or so, as new people wander in and are totally shocked to discover that...

1. I have OCD.
2. I am Mira Grant.
3. I love fanfic.

These things are sometimes equal in their shocking nature. "Wait, you can be a best-selling author without being neurotypical?" Yes! "Wait, Mira Grant isn't a real person?" She's real, she's just, you know, me. "Authors can love fanfic?!" Yes.

Yes we can.

If I had the power, I would ask all the authors in the world to do Yuletide or something like it every year. Sign up for a fic exchange and write some porn for a stranger; tailor your stories to an audience of one, let go of the long-form plots and the careful wide-spectrum appeal, embrace the joy of spending a hundred words on Carlos's perfect hair or Buffy's perfect shoes or Jo's perfect knives. Remember the joy of waiting for one person to open a story and see what it contains.

Because fanfic is joy. Fanfic is fixing the things you see as broken, and patching the seams between what's written and what is not, and giving characters who got cheated out of their happy endings another chance. There was a time, not that long ago as we measure things, where all fiction was what we would now call "fan fiction." Shakespeare didn't come up with most of his own plots. He wrote plays about the stories people already loved. We didn't get a thousand versions of "Snow White" accidentally: people changed that story to suit themselves, and no one said they weren't storytellers, or looked down on them for loving that core of red and black and white, of apples and glass and snow.

Originality wasn't the god of fiction until the last few centuries, and even then, we didn't fixate on it until we reached the era of modern copyright. Mickey looks a lot like Oswald, if you know what I mean. Wanting to work with characters you already know and love is not a new urge. Hell, all television and non-creator-owned comics can be viewed as fanfic, if you squint and cock your head, because much of it is being written about characters and situations created by other people. It's just fanfic with contracts behind it.

I recently accomplished the fanfic writer's dream: I was paid to write a story about a character created by Charlaine Harris, Amelia Broadway, which was published in the anthology Dead But Not Forgotten. I admit, I kissed that check, because it was the fulfillment of a life-long dream. I didn't make canon, necessarily, but I made fanfic for the world.

I encourage and celebrate fanfic of my work, even if I can't read it right now. Because fanfic is amazing, and it's important. It allows us to interface with the things we love in a way that is otherwise virtually impossible.

That's amazing.

shannon j.l. [userpic]

Viz Licenses Original Sailor Moon Anime Franchise

May 16th, 2014 (11:05 pm)

Originally posted by animenews at Viz Licenses Original Sailor Moon Anime Franchise

All 200 TV episodes, 3 films, & specials unedited with subtitles & new dub

ALL Sailor Moon. Unedited.

Pinxh me, I'm DREAMING!

shannon j.l. [userpic]

Dear LJ

May 16th, 2014 (11:43 am)

Your new look is horribly ugly.

No love

shannon j.l. [userpic]

Whispered Words

May 13th, 2014 (11:45 pm)

Whispered WordsWhispered Words by Takashi Ikeda

My rating: 4 of 5 stars

VERY good yuri schoolgirl romance. Ignore the crossdresser mentioned on the cover copy, 'she' is at best a side character. Sumika is a young woman struggling with unequited love and worse, is a bit of a goof. So it's VERY hard for her to try to confess. Worse, her beloved Ushio constantly claims she is ONLY into cute girls, which Sumika thinks excludes her.

Of course, things happen.

The book contains the first third of the series, so it's MOSTLY character introducing. But there are some fun bits, it's VERY funny and there are hints of darker backstories.

STRONGLY recommended.

View all my reviews

shannon j.l. [userpic]

Black Lagoon Fucking Short Version.

May 5th, 2014 (10:19 am)

shannon j.l. [userpic]

As of July I'm gonna have been on LJ Ten Years

April 19th, 2014 (12:02 pm)

Daym. Time flies....

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