blackaudacity:

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Jenna Wortham

As  a technology reporter for The New York Times, Jenna Wortham writes about mobile apps, Web start-ups, and everything in between. Prior to theTimes, Wortham served as a technology and culture reporter for Wired.com. In-depth and comprehensible to even the most technologically-impaired, her writing has also appeared in print publications like WiredBust, and Frommer’s. Yet her most distinctive work to date is Girl Crush, a zine launched by Wortham and Thessaly La Force that venerates inspirational women. Girl Crush’s first volume, released last summer, featured over 20 essays and musings from acclaimed female contributors, including a Pulitzer-winning novelist. “The goal isn’t to turn a profit, but rather to capture a cultural moment, which in turn, offers the creators the freedom to explore and experiment,” explained Wortham in a Times article on zines.

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Rembert Browne

Like many of his twenty-something year-old peers, Rembert Browne started a blog, 500 Days Asunderin 2011 to document his daily musings and to put his “creative juices” to practice. His exhilarating honesty coupled with his tangy wit and introspective rumination made for some of the best, most unique blog posts published in a while. Included in his most popular posts are “5 Black Comedians: A Study,” “Top 10 Diddy Moments. Ever,” and “Me vs. Drake.”  While most people, young or old, might have balled up into a dark, deep hole after being fired from their first job within nine months, or withdrawing from graduate school with eight months left, Browne wrote a kick ass, inspirational farewell blog post titled “About That Life” before reassessing his next moves. The Dartmouth alum was soon after promoted from freelancer to staff writer atGrantland, where he puts his distinct spin on culture and sports.

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Jackie Sibblies Drury

Since entering the selective stratosphere that is American theatre, the Brooklyn-based playwright Jackie Sibblies Drury’s star has continued soaring to impressive heights. A 2012 New York Magazine article spotlighted her as one of the city’s 10 playwrights to watch. Time spent at Brown University’s MFA playwriting program resulted in her winning the David Wickham Prize in Playwriting and a Weston Award. Drury went on to write the award-winning playWe Are Proud to Present a Presentation and receive multiple fellowships, including the inaugural Jerome New York Fellowship, which awarded her $50,000 towards producing new work and researching Morocco. In an interview with “Works By Women” last fall, Drury explained the project: “I’m hoping to spend my time talking with people, observing people, and reading a lot while thinking about the intersections between politics, Islam, and feminism, both in a predominantly Islamic state as well as in African-American communities in the U.S.”

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Uzoamaka Maduka

Otherwise known as Max, Uzoamaka Maduka’s name has been plastered all over major New York City publications. More attention has been given to her socialite-like charisma than her literary journal, The American Reader. Nonetheless, the Nigerian-American Princeton graduate has been on a steadfast mission to revitalize the American literary magazine. “So many of the voices in fiction that are out there are deeply neurotic white male stories…I kind of felt like, I really don’t want to sit still for this,” Maduka told The New York Times. “Literature, from women of any race and men of any race, besides white, would always be pigeonholed as, ‘Now I’m going to tell you my Nigerian story,’ and it was so tiring.” Two issues of The American Reader were published in 2012 to mostly tentative reviews, but Maduka has already shifted her focus to this calendar year with aims of landing a second investor and scouting potential writers.

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Kyla Marshell

The petite, powerhouse poet that is

Kyla Marshell has been building a solid repertoire of award-winning published pieces for quite some time now. She has demonstrated an acute ability to dissect multifaceted issues, both social and personal, in her arsenal of poems. In “We’ll Always Have Negritude,” a piece about “how Black people are going to survive the apocalypse,” Marshell writes, “my locs will be the chain-link fence keeping out those aliens, & your afro will be the cumulus clouds cottoning the sky, the unpicked cotton sky.” A graduate of Spelman College and Sarah Lawrence College, she has also penned excellent commentary on Black hipsters and the hashtag’s lament, written reviews on jazz for Okayplayer’s The Revivalist, and received a Jacob K. Javits Fellowship in 2011 and a Cave Canem Fellowship in 2010 and 2011.

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Jason Parham

“We as a people come out of this highly literary Black tradition where we’re trying to break down societal barriers through art and give a voice to people who often go unheard,” Jason Parham, editor of the literary journal Spook, told EBONY.com in a past interview. “We create our own conversations and dictate our own conversations and show we are just as powerful and we have just as much to say as anybody else.” Having noticed a dearth in the canon of great journals like The New Yorker and Harpers, Parham displayed an exemplary amount of self-determination and created a great publication “with a heavy minority focus.” Sixteen Black writers (including Marshell and Browne) skilled in various genres contributed to the first issue of Spook released this past June. Parham, who has penned articles for VibeGQThe Atlantic and Village Voice, told our Brooke Obie that he was transitioning to creative writing, working on his novel, and finalizing the second volume of Spook. “With Spook, I hope to show that our writing is as good as anybody else’s.”

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Taiye Selasi

When Toni Morrison sets a deadline for you, you meet it. And that is exactly what Taiye Selasi did, according to an NPR interview. After meeting Morrison through the author’s niece, Selasi ended up having dinner at Morrison’s home and then her son’s home. It was during that second meeting that the Pulitzer Prize winner gave Selasi an ultimatum. “She said, ‘Listen, I’m going to give you a year. If you don’t have something for me by then, I don’t know what to say.” A year later, Selasi produced the short story, “The Sex Lives of African Girls,” which was published in the heralded literary journal Granta in 2011 and featured in Best American Short Stories of 2012. Born in London and raised in Massachusetts, Selasi unpacked intricate notions of identity in her 2005 seminal essay titled, “Bye-Bye, Babar (Or: What is an Afropolitan?”) Ghana Must Go, her highly-anticipated debut novel, will be released in March.


Read more at EBONY http://www.ebony.com/entertainment-culture/7-young-black-writers-you-should-know-304/2#ixzz2J6AeX9Iy 

(via slaybelle)

racebending:

princelesscomic:

princelesscomic:

J. Skylar at Comic Book Bin wrote an incredible article that can be used AS A STARTING POINT when writing LGBT characters or about LGBT issues.  Follow the link, check it out, but remember: your most important job when you write about another culture of any type is to do your research and understand what the words you are using mean, not just from a dictionary but to those who will read them and be affected.

Writing about topics you are not directly involved in can be a difficult task, particularly when it concerns cultural identities because you may inadvertently offend the very people you wish to write about. This is especially true when writing about the Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual and Transgender (LGBT) community, because its terminology has changed and evolved considerably over the past century.”

So…apparently this is somehow up for debate.  Read the site editor’s response.  Please, let him know what you think…I did.  http://www.comicbookbin.com/Challenging_LGBT_Classifications001.html

Skylar’s tips for writers included simple things like avoiding the word “homosexual” and using “transgender” as an adjective instead of a noun. Apparently this was too much for site editor Herve St-Louis, who writes:

However, Skyler’s construct seemed to me too normative and too controlling. If you’ve read ComicBookBin for ten years or know about me personally, you’ll know that I like to poke fun at authority figures and normative stances. I can’t help it. I like to challenge dogma. Skyler introduced her classification method to writers of ComicBookBin because presumably she was annoyed at how we wrote and classified LGBT issues. I am the first one to admit to using the word homosexual to describe gay men in several articles. Before reading Skyler’s notes, I had no clue whatsoever that the word homosexual was even a problem. In fact, I always assumed that the term “gay” was more associated with a specific lifestyle that trapped many men into a specific cultural identity and that the word homosexual freed them of being classified under a cultural construct.

…I feel that Skyler’s classification unduly restricts the voice of other writers. Because it is motivated by a need to reverse a dominant discourse, it therefore manifests an objective that may not be shared with other writers at ComicBookBin. At ComicBookBin, we have had writers who were on the extreme left and some who definitely were right of centre. I welcome all of them. Personally, I find the rainbow of terms defined by LGBT too cumbersome and too elastic in its attempt to include everyone and make everybody happy. I will admit that I find placing lesbians before gays a trivial matter. It feels like overbearing political correctness and I don’t like it. ComicBookBin is not about political correctness. It’s about comics. That writers choose to classify terms as suggested by Skyler is something I will leave to each of them to decide. I will not adopt the full range of Skyler’s classification because it’s too heavy to use for me. Also, I am not convinced that terms such as “homosexual” are deemed as derogatory by many gays. It sounds as something that queer theorists debate among each other as opposed to a feeling shared by the gay population at large about the term homosexual being insulting to them. Skyler’s classification has certainly educated me, but I can choose my own classification construct just as Skyler does.

…One of my biggest criticisms of Skyler’s article is that it talks down on people instead of including them in the discourse. We have a lecturer lecturing readers about what is acceptable language and what is not. The rebel in me right away flared up with what I deem a patronizing language. Skyler’s classification did not include groups which were not part of the LGBT in the discussion. In a weird way they were excluded from the discourse and became the other which Skyler has tried to deflate.

…an individual helpfully lays out general guidelines for how to reflect or write about a marginalized community. The suggestions are rejected for bring too “heavy” or otherwise cumbersome—in other words, the writer’s convenience is prioritized over the needs of the marginalized community the writer is trying to represent. The tips for how to write sensitively are deemed “patronizing” and exclusionary towards straight people.

(via initiumseries)

westquarry:

Worldbuilding Wednesday #6: “Wrede and Write”
By now, I’m sure that most of you have read Patricia C. Wrede’s classic list of fantasy worldbuilding questions; if you haven’t, I would recommend following the above link and giving them a glance-over.  At the very least, they’ll give you some good inspiration for things you should think about while building your fictional world. They’ve been around forever, and many people have found them very helpful. That said, I have to admit that it was only very recently that I’ve discovered how to use them myself. 
After initially discovering them, (and being initially very excited to have found them), I tried many times to use them as a tool for creating fantasy worlds from scratch. I thought I’d start with Question 1 of The Basics (“Are the laws of nature and physics actually different in this world, or are they the same as in real life? How does magic fit in? How do magical beasts fit in?”) and systematically go down the list, answering all the questions. At the end, or so I thought, I’d have a completed world ready to go.
Well, maybe that’s how other people use the list. I don’t know. Perhaps that’s how the list was originally intended to be used — I doubt it, but maybe.  All I know is, it never worked for me.  I would start at Question 1, and get a few questions in, and then stall, crash, and burn. 
Sometimes I would stall at the first question, having trouble deciding whether or not my world would differ from Earth, and where, and how much. Sometimes I would get a little farther in. But eventually. I would hit a wall, where I couldn’t answer the question and couldn’t think of how to create an answer to the question. Maybe I’d skip it for the moment, and move to the next — only to hit another wall a few minutes later.  Eventually I’d abandon the exercise, and not once do I remember ever thinking a world I’d started via the questions was worth revisiting or continuing outside of them.
It’s taken me a long time to figure out why that was. But recently I’ve realized that, for me at least, the questions are not a system for creating a world from scratch. Instead, they’re much more helpful to me as a checklist after I’ve already built the world. They can illuminate holes that need to be filled in a worldbuilding project. They are helpful with revising and touching up my world at closer to the end of its construction, rather than creating it at the beginning.  Once I have the world more or less in shape, I can go to the list and say, “What does this country import? Export? How important is trade to the economy? How is currency exchange handled, and by whom? What is the system of coinage, and who mints it?” And, if I don’t have an answer for it, that’s something for me to think about. The answer might change the way I look at the world; it might have far-reaching repercussions. Or it might just be a detail that I mention in passing in my notes and never use where anyone else will see it. Either way, it makes that part of the world a little more real for me, and hopefully that gets passed on to the audience whether or not they know about the one small detail.
So, having discovered that I was using the questions at the wrong end of the process, I can now say that they are indeed as good a resource as I first thought upon discovering them years ago — just not quite in the way I expected back then.
Your mileage may vary, of course — you may find them helpful in completely different ways than I do. If you do, let me know how you put them to use?

westquarry:

Worldbuilding Wednesday #6: “Wrede and Write”

By now, I’m sure that most of you have read Patricia C. Wrede’s classic list of fantasy worldbuilding questions; if you haven’t, I would recommend following the above link and giving them a glance-over.  At the very least, they’ll give you some good inspiration for things you should think about while building your fictional world. They’ve been around forever, and many people have found them very helpful. That said, I have to admit that it was only very recently that I’ve discovered how to use them myself. 

After initially discovering them, (and being initially very excited to have found them), I tried many times to use them as a tool for creating fantasy worlds from scratch. I thought I’d start with Question 1 of The Basics (“Are the laws of nature and physics actually different in this world, or are they the same as in real life? How does magic fit in? How do magical beasts fit in?”) and systematically go down the list, answering all the questions. At the end, or so I thought, I’d have a completed world ready to go.

Well, maybe that’s how other people use the list. I don’t know. Perhaps that’s how the list was originally intended to be used — I doubt it, but maybe.  All I know is, it never worked for me.  I would start at Question 1, and get a few questions in, and then stall, crash, and burn. 

Sometimes I would stall at the first question, having trouble deciding whether or not my world would differ from Earth, and where, and how much. Sometimes I would get a little farther in. But eventually. I would hit a wall, where I couldn’t answer the question and couldn’t think of how to create an answer to the question. Maybe I’d skip it for the moment, and move to the next — only to hit another wall a few minutes later.  Eventually I’d abandon the exercise, and not once do I remember ever thinking a world I’d started via the questions was worth revisiting or continuing outside of them.

It’s taken me a long time to figure out why that was. But recently I’ve realized that, for me at least, the questions are not a system for creating a world from scratch. Instead, they’re much more helpful to me as a checklist after I’ve already built the world. They can illuminate holes that need to be filled in a worldbuilding project. They are helpful with revising and touching up my world at closer to the end of its construction, rather than creating it at the beginning.  Once I have the world more or less in shape, I can go to the list and say, “What does this country import? Export? How important is trade to the economy? How is currency exchange handled, and by whom? What is the system of coinage, and who mints it?” And, if I don’t have an answer for it, that’s something for me to think about. The answer might change the way I look at the world; it might have far-reaching repercussions. Or it might just be a detail that I mention in passing in my notes and never use where anyone else will see it. Either way, it makes that part of the world a little more real for me, and hopefully that gets passed on to the audience whether or not they know about the one small detail.

So, having discovered that I was using the questions at the wrong end of the process, I can now say that they are indeed as good a resource as I first thought upon discovering them years ago — just not quite in the way I expected back then.

Your mileage may vary, of course — you may find them helpful in completely different ways than I do. If you do, let me know how you put them to use?

(via jackconnersblog)

yahighway:

After all, we need more non-western fantasy, and we need people who can write it with respect and understanding, to open the doors to still more diversity.”

(via jackconnersblog)

"The good news, young writers, is that your life does not have to be extraordinarily interesting, because there are billions of people in the world who do have interesting lives, and you have the privilege of telling their stories. Even the most productive journalist could not write 1% of humanity’s freely available interesting stories in the course of an entire career. Your friends, and neighbors, and community members, and people across town, and across your country, and across the world far and wide are all brimming with stories to tell. Stories of love, and war, and crime, and peril, and redemption. The average inmate at your local jail probably has a far more interesting life story than Susan Shapiro or you or I do, no matter how many of our ex-boyfriends and girlfriends we call for comment. All of the compelling stories you could ever hope to be offered are already freely available. All you have to do is to look outside of yourself, and listen, and write them down."

Journalism Is Not Narcissism

TATTOOING THIS ON MY PERSON

(via michelledean)

(via utnereader)

I personally write the best in the afternoon from about 2-5 but I don’t always get my preferred writing time. Sometimes I just write when I can and try to get things done.

A slide of a workshop that Mark Coker, CEO of Smashwords, did in Sacramento for the California Writers Club back in September. I wanted to go to this so badly, since this was right in my backyard but I didn’t have any money to pay the workshop fee. Share with anyone and everyone who wants to know more about self-publishing!

sorry it’s been so quiet. I’ve become kinda addicted to SimCity on FB lol. I’ve been working on Book 2 of INITIUM, having already finished Book 1 about a week or two ago. Ashley has already started on the artwork. We are planning to release Book 1 this December. We will be doing another launch event and I promise to let you guys know what day and everything. I’m still working on the sequel to The Lost Kingwhich is titled The Father God, but I’m dragging my feet per usual. I don’t think that I’m going to make my deadline but I’m still going to try anyway.

As always if you want to know more about INITIUM, Ashley, and myself, follow us on FB, Twitter, and our blogs.

FB

Twitter

Blogs

stfunithingas:

missturdle:

pugletto:

mutantninjaturdle:

I give you Beardy Unwashed Fantasy Guy. He spends his time in Mead Halls. He thinks writing about not white people would be a lot of work and frankly there just weren’t people of color in the part of Europe he is basing his Fantasy off of. Besides, writing people of Color would be hard. And this isn’t the real world anyways.
It’s Fantasy.

Create your own sarcastic as fuck Beardy Unwashed Fantasy Guys here

Just you guys know. This post has been going around uncredited. Turdle here made every single one of those and it’s always nice to try and redirect folks back to the source sometimes (especially when she created this meme for a specific purpose, to which people are clueless kind of and it’s just easier to redirect them back to this anyway.)In either case, there’s a link there where you can MAKE YOUR OWN, so. Yeah.

I am so mad though. I literally made these a year ago, and now they’re being taken from me without the original context.
I made it when, during Nanowrimo prep (that’s National Novel Writing Month), I noticed people were commenting on the exclusion of POCs in the Fantasy genre. Someone told me their ancestors were probably beardy unwashed white guys chugging mead in beer halls. 
IN FACT, this is the EXACT quote that inspired my other posts:


I don’t like the notion that fantasy authors are under some kind of obligation to present ethnically diverse worlds. I’m English, and a fair sized part of English history consists of unwashed beardy white people in mead halls. If I’m inspired by my own history and cultural heritage, then that’s what I’m damn well going to write about. I’m not writing about some other culture just to appease the people who think there aren’t enough black characters in fantasy, or whatever. You want it, you write it. Nothing to do with me.


It made me angry! REALLY ANGRY. So I made GEE, I DON’T KNOW HOW TO RESEARCH WRITING CHARACTERS OF COLOR TASTEFULLY. Then I made that meme. This has been in my blog for eleven months now. It’s weird as hell to see it yanked from me, posted by someone else w/out credit or the CONTEXT of the original post and the original comment and why he’s the Beardy Unwashed White Fantasy Guy meme, but there it is. These are all mine, and I wrote them and this is why.  #receipts.

yay, thank you for making this meme, I love it so much

stfunithingas:

missturdle:

pugletto:

mutantninjaturdle:

I give you Beardy Unwashed Fantasy Guy. He spends his time in Mead Halls. He thinks writing about not white people would be a lot of work and frankly there just weren’t people of color in the part of Europe he is basing his Fantasy off of. Besides, writing people of Color would be hard. And this isn’t the real world anyways.

It’s Fantasy.


Create your own sarcastic as fuck Beardy Unwashed Fantasy Guys here

Just you guys know. This post has been going around uncredited. Turdle here made every single one of those and it’s always nice to try and redirect folks back to the source sometimes (especially when she created this meme for a specific purpose, to which people are clueless kind of and it’s just easier to redirect them back to this anyway.)

In either case, there’s a link there where you can MAKE YOUR OWN, so. Yeah.

I am so mad though. I literally made these a year ago, and now they’re being taken from me without the original context.

I made it when, during Nanowrimo prep (that’s National Novel Writing Month), I noticed people were commenting on the exclusion of POCs in the Fantasy genre. Someone told me their ancestors were probably beardy unwashed white guys chugging mead in beer halls. 

IN FACT, this is the EXACT quote that inspired my other posts:

I don’t like the notion that fantasy authors are under some kind of obligation to present ethnically diverse worlds. I’m English, and a fair sized part of English history consists of unwashed beardy white people in mead halls. If I’m inspired by my own history and cultural heritage, then that’s what I’m damn well going to write about. I’m not writing about some other culture just to appease the people who think there aren’t enough black characters in fantasy, or whatever. You want it, you write it. Nothing to do with me.

It made me angry! REALLY ANGRY. So I made GEE, I DON’T KNOW HOW TO RESEARCH WRITING CHARACTERS OF COLOR TASTEFULLY. Then I made that meme. This has been in my blog for eleven months now. It’s weird as hell to see it yanked from me, posted by someone else w/out credit or the CONTEXT of the original post and the original comment and why he’s the Beardy Unwashed White Fantasy Guy meme, but there it is. These are all mine, and I wrote them and this is why.  
#receipts.

yay, thank you for making this meme, I love it so much

(Source: , via thefemaletyrant)

"

The Declaration of Independence for Writers

When in the Course of publishing events, it becomes necessary for writers to sever their ties with the industry that is supposed to have “nurtured” them, a decent respect to the opinions of mankind requires that we should declare the causes which impel those writers to the separation.

We hold these truths to be self-evident, that all writers should have an equal chance to find readers. That their successes or failures should be dependent upon their own actions and their own choices. That they should be paid fairly for their work. That they should have control over the works they produce. That they should have immediate and accurate access to their sales data. That they should be paid promptly. That they should not be restricted from reaching those who may enjoy their work. That whenever a publisher becomes destructive of these ends, it is the Right of Authors to abolish all connections with the offending parties.

The history of the legacy publishing industry is a history of repeated injuries and usurpations, all having in direct object the establishment of an absolute Tyranny over writers. To prove this, let Facts be submitted to a candid world.

They have given us take-it-or-leave-it, one-sided, unconscionable contracts.
They have failed to adequately market works they have acquired.
They have artificially inflated the price of ebooks.
They have refused to negotiate better ebook royalties for authors.
They have forced unnecessary editing changes on authors.
They have forced unnecessary title changes on authors.
They have forced crappy covers on authors.
They have refused to exploit rights they own.
They have refused to return rights they aren’t properly exploiting.
They take far too long to bring acquired works to market.
They take far too long to pay writers advances and royalties.
Their royalty statements are opaque, out-of-date, and inaccurate.
They orphan authors.
They orphan books.
They refuse to treat authors as equals, let alone with a reasonable measure of fairness.
They make mistakes and take no responsibility for those mistakes.
For every hope they nurture, they unnecessarily neglect and destroy countless others.
They have made accessories of the authors’ ostensible representative organization, the quisling Authors Guild, and are served, too, by the misleadingly named Association of Authors’ Representatives.
They have failed to honor promises made.
They have failed to honor their own onerous contract terms.
They’ve failed the vast majority of authors, period.

This blog has documented nearly every stage of these Oppressions, and in many cases offered solutions to publishers, and has been answered with only silence and derision.

But that’s okay. Because now authors have a choice.

I don’t need legacy publishing, and I will never be taken advantage of again. I declare myself independent of the entire archaic, broken, corrupt system.

And I won’t be the last to do so.

"

— Joe Konrath

(Source: jakonrath.blogspot.com)