Some links

November 18, 2014

This week I had some exciting news regarding not one, but two upcoming writing projects. And that’s all I can say about that! (I know, I’m horrible.) Watch this space, I’ll be sure to let you know when I’m able to share more.

In the meantime, here are some interesting things I’ve come across on the internet recently.

GamerGate and the Politicization of Absolutely Everything – this article is actually over two weeks old at this point, so you’ve likely already seen it, but I did want to share just in case. I try to avoid talking politics in general, but I will say that the Politicization of Absolutely Everything is something that I struggle with daily, because it makes me immensely uncomfortable and it really is everywhere. I’ve long felt that it seemed like society was getting more political—and polarized—in general, so it was nice to see the data backing that up.

I truly believe that we will never be able to solve any of the problems the world is facing today, big or small, if we do not learn to start working together, and acknowledging that people with different beliefs than our own are not any less valid as human beings. There used to be an expression that went, “It takes all types to make the world go round.” You don’t hear it much anymore, but it’s true. So please try to remember, even if you disagree with someone politically, this isn’t the Sith vs. the Jedi. Let’s try to work together and find common ground, rather than focusing on divisiveness and an “us vs. them” mentality.

• Saw this great article today: Ten Women Writers of LGBT YA. I was so excited to see three of my all-time favorite authors, Malinda Lo and the wife-and-wife team of Sarah Diemer and Jennifer Diemer, on the list! I was also thrilled that the list included traditionally published, small press and indie authors. Some of these writers I hadn’t heard of, and others have been on my to-read list for awhile, so hopefully I will have time to catch up soon and check out more of these books.

• A bit of a less-great thing I caught today was the book tie-in for I Can Be… Computer Engineer Barbie. The article will give you the nitty gritty about the book, and I have to say that I am immensely disappointed. I am not one of those women who will bash Barbie—ever. Barbie was my favorite toy growing up. Through playing with Barbie, I was able to imagine and live out stories that enabled me to grow into the writer I am today. I never had a negative self-image because of Barbie; in fact, I believe I grew up to be someone immensely more confident than most of my grade-school peers who didn’t play with dolls.

This book is not Barbie. I didn’t just play with the dolls growing up, I read the book tie-ins that went along with them, and I watched the movies when they started coming out in the late nineties/early-2000s. Barbie does not just sit around and let “Brian” and “Steven” do her work for her. Barbie does not say, “Oh, gee willikers, I just draw pretty pictures and let the menfolk do the real work.” Barbie is the one who was rescuing her sister and saving everyone’s butts from a lifetime as icy statues while the “prince” stood around being useless eight years before Disney tried the same thing with Frozen. Barbie is proactive. She is a doer. Barbie doesn’t need men to do stuff for her—she does it herself. That’s how it’s always been, my entire, nearly-30-year life.

That’s why I’m so angry about this book. Not only is it a piece of anachronistic, sexist drivel, but it goes against everything Barbie stands for. I happily purchased Computer Engineer Barbie when she came out several years ago, because I am a web designer (and FYI, I hand code my sites, Mattel) and I was so excited to see a doll who was like me. Barbie is supposed to teach girls that they can do anything they put their minds to. This book is an insult to everything Barbie has done for girls over the years.

• And finally, I saw this on Twitter:

I’m glad to know Google thinks Oregon is good. I think so, too, but it’s always nice to have a second opinion.

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