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Tansy Rayner Roberts

Friday Links is a Sweetheart of the Galaxy

February 22nd, 2013 at 9:32

560005_551803044852603_629319212_nCongratulations to all Nebula nominees, and a big extra special CONGRATULATIONS to Margo Lanagan for being part of the inaugural Stella Prize longlist with Sea Hearts.

(Cough, and apparently the high number of women and people of colour on the Nebula list is a cause for alarm for some commenters over at SF Signal… yes, really)

The ongoing coverage, tweets and especially leaked images from the filming of An Adventure in Space and Time is bringing me nothing but joy. Normally I avoid set photos of Doctor Who because I’m all about the finished product, but this is different. Behind the scenes shots of a show about behind the scenes shots has allowed me to see fragments of Daleks recreating famous 1960′s ‘invasion of London shots,’ William Hartnell in a park with his family, Ian, Barbara and Susan on the TARDIS interior set for the first time (the console is green!) and a recreation of Totter’s Lane. It’s like actual time travel is involved.

Did you know it was the anniversary of Mists of Avalon? Neither did I until Bitch Magazine pointed it out, but man that book smacked me between the teeth when I was fourteen or so. Regardless of whether you liked it or not, it was a massively important cultural milestone of the 80′s which caused ripple effects through fantasy, historical fiction, the feminist and pagan communities, and general readers.

At the time I thought it was the longest book I would ever read. Ha!

This piece on Hilary Mantel’s speech (in which she criticises the media construct and portrayal of the Duchess of Cambridge, and has been misquoted all over the place in various newspapers as attacking the princess in a good old fashioned cat fight when in fact she was criticising THE NEWSPAPERS) is the clearest and most sensible I have read. The quote “As Mantel has learnt to her cost today, it’s not only royal women who are expected to stay quiet” is resonating quite strongly with my Twitter followers, as I think it’s become my most retweeted thing ever. Which only goes to show that I have the best Twitter followers.

Lisa L Hannett’s new This is Horror column talks about the much neglected night creatures who don’t get to play nearly as often as the vampires and zombies and she cites Love and Romanpunk for my use of classical monsters! Anything I can do to spread the manticore love…

photo-main-1Remember Superma’am and Batma’am, the awesome crossplayers? They are running a Kickstarter right now to fund a web series about cosplayers who become superheroes. It looks pretty adorable.

Tor looks at Women and Power in Star Trek Next Generation, a good start towards a re-examination of the female characters in this show which I think is long overdue. Unfortunately, many commenters turned out to be very passionate about arguing against this concept, because apparently having lots of bad treatment of the female characters means those characters are terrible and no one is allowed to like them? And also if it was done better in later series like DS9 and Voyager, that completely negates the importance of how the role of women became so much more prominent in Next Gen. At least we can all agree that they did better than the original series, right? Right?

I’m particularly troubled by the old chestnut of dismissing the show’s ‘women only in nurturing roles’ once Tasha Yar left. While it would be more balanced to have a lady shooting things as well as a lady mending people, this is the only time Star Trek had a female doctor. Things can be problematic and awesome at the same time, everyone! Don’t be dissing my Beverly Crusher. (and I found the criticisms of Dr Pulaski really interesting from a gendered point of view, as apparently she was TOO like McCoy… while Crusher was not enough like McCoy. Is the problem here that none of these women were McCoy?)

Marie Brennan writes an open letter to the creators of sexist comic book and SF art, asking them to stop doing that.

So there’s this person who set up a Sims account with lovingly-created characters based in looks and personality on the ensemble from Downton Abbey. It’s amazing how much they seem to reproduce the relationships of the show! Also she forgot to turn off the ‘supernatural’ setting, which means the occasional werewolf or zombie wanders into the action.

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2 Responses to “Friday Links is a Sweetheart of the Galaxy”

  1. Culturally Disoriented Says:

    I read the comments on SF Signal (MAYDAY! MAYDAY! TERRIBLE IDEA ALERT!), and spent a good five minutes sputtering with rage at the computer.

    Then I saw that one of the commenters complaining about the “girliness” of the Nebula nominations was planning on reading “Glamour in Glass” and could not stop laughing. If anonymous web commenter is bothered by girliness, how will they react to books advertised as “Jane Austen with magic”?

  2. tansyrr Says:

    I think the theme of “just because it’s good doesn’t mean I approve of women’s writing” has characterised a lot of my internet reading this week.

    I also very much enjoyed Mary Robinette’s ‘frock disclaimer on the SF Signal thread.

    Diversity: it’s a feature, not a bug.

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