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Author Topic: I am, in fact, furious...  (Read 192 times)

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VisionFromAfar

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I am, in fact, furious...
« on: May 23, 2011, 07:41:46 PM »

Just fired of an e-mail to Jason over at the Wild Hunt about this too, but I'm sharing with y'all just to make sure I'm not over-reacting...

Now, I love io9.com. They give me daily news about nerd stuff, from Joss Wheaton to Star Wars, so I likes it. Something they do about once a week is spotlight an up-and-coming nerd-type book (sci-fi, fantasty, etc.). This week's spotlight was a post-apocalyptic story called Burn Down the Sky by James Jaros. I enjoy a good end-of-the-world yarn as much as the next nerd (see the Dies the Fire series by SM Stirling), but this one has got my blood boiling. This author could have called his evil, killer, Sexually Transmitted Disease anything at all and no one would've cared. He could've gone by an abbreviation of it's "scientific" description (Immune Disintegration Disease), but no, he called it "Wicca".

Observe:

"If marauders come, we'll claim the drought like a friend," her father had said last night, "because having nothing might drive them on without a battle."

"They want more than water," her mother had replied. "They want-"

Before her father could speak, her mother silenced herself. But Ananda knew what she would have said: "They want girls." And she knew why her mother had stopped speaking: the fear of Wicca.

Her parents had told her about the virus a little more than a year ago. They'd sat her down in their tent after the evening communal meal and closed the flaps. Bliss had stood outside to make sure the littlest children didn't overhear what was about to be said. Her mother had told her to listen carefully, that they didn't want to dwell on what they had to tell her, "but you're older now, and you need to know." Her mom began by saying that Wicca had a scientific name: Immune Disintegration Disorder, or IDD, but that "Wicca" had come into far greater usage after enraged fundamentalists of all faiths started calling it the "devil's disease."

Ananda had sat still as the air in the tent as her mother said that the Wicca virus confined safe sex between men and women to the twelve months after menarche. "After that, sex will almost always kill you. So sex can't happen, Ananda," her mother had said in her gentlest voice. "Ever."


(emphasis mine)

LINK

So, inter-webs, am I over-reacting?  :stormy:  :brickwall: :rantfit:
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Tirya

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Re: I am, in fact, furious...
« Reply #1 on: May 23, 2011, 08:02:07 PM »

Personally I don't think I'd waste the energy getting worked up over it. There's nothing that you can do about it, so is there a point in getting frothy over it? Is the guy a dick? Yeah, pretty much. Would I buy his books? Not in a million years. So there's $8 is publisher isn't getting from me, and that's about the extent of "showing my displeasure" that I can do in the real world.

Take into account, however, that over the past 18 months, my life has taken a serious left turn when it comes to "things that I think are worth getting upset about", and things that I feel are worth expending my limited energy over are much fewer and farther between than they used to be.

If you feel strongly about it, write to the publisher. I doubt that they'll care, but since they're the ones who are impacted by the books not selling, they'd probably be a little more financially interested. I doubt the author cares - there's no way he's stupid enough to not know that Wicca is a religion, and he chose to use it anyway.
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dragonspring

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Re: I am, in fact, furious...
« Reply #2 on: May 23, 2011, 08:05:39 PM »

Yes the guy is a butt and yes it pisses me off.  But like Tirya, I prefer not to give the butthead the energy it takes to get really angry over it.  I would probably write to IO9 and stop using there services.
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VisionFromAfar

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Re: I am, in fact, furious...
« Reply #3 on: May 23, 2011, 08:13:03 PM »

I guess you're right. Most of the comments on io9 agree that his choice of words is ridiculous and not worth troubling over. I seem to have displayed a knee-jerk reaction here. Sorry all.  :whistle:
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Ghost Wolf

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Re: I am, in fact, furious...
« Reply #4 on: May 23, 2011, 08:30:02 PM »

It's understandable, V.
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Tirya

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Re: I am, in fact, furious...
« Reply #5 on: May 23, 2011, 08:33:06 PM »

 Nothing to apologize for! :) The guy's got issues, IMHO. He can claim the whole "I respect the strong women I've known and that's why I write strong female leads even though I'm a guy" thing all he wants, but to take a word that is so strongly associated with female empowerment and not only turn it into something negative, but to add such a strong sexual component to it, makes me wonder what he's trying to play to in his target audience. To me it smells like "discomfort and fear", but I'm just an armchair coyote-quarterback who's late for belly dance class. ;)
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dragonspring

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Re: I am, in fact, furious...
« Reply #6 on: May 23, 2011, 08:42:10 PM »

You don't need to apologize for your feelings!  We all have them.   :D
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earthmuffin

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Re: I am, in fact, furious...
« Reply #7 on: May 23, 2011, 10:34:13 PM »

I'm actually kind of interested to read the book now to see what this guy's deal is. The choice of name for the character, Ananda, is interesting since it means bliss in Sanskrit. I tend to laugh my tail off at books with overt agendas.

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RosemarySarah

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Re: I am, in fact, furious...
« Reply #8 on: June 28, 2011, 03:25:29 PM »

Anyone else find it vaguely entertaining that this author proposes that somehow the fundies from "every religion" could band together to blame Wicca for an std? That just makes him sound pretty ignorant in my book. It seems like the fundies would blame each other, not Wicca, which typically flies further under the radar.
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VisionFromAfar

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Re: I am, in fact, furious...
« Reply #9 on: July 01, 2011, 03:42:55 PM »

Anyone else find it vaguely entertaining that this author proposes that somehow the fundies from "every religion" could band together to blame Wicca for an std? That just makes him sound pretty ignorant in my book. It seems like the fundies would blame each other, not Wicca, which typically flies further under the radar.

Someone hasn't heard the term "Satanic Panic." Don't worry, it's trying really hard to come back in vogue. Even the Catholic Church, when noticing an uptick in the requests for exorcisms, blammed the public outgrowth of "spiritual and occult practices" as a primary cause...  :brickwall:
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RosemarySarah

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Re: I am, in fact, furious...
« Reply #10 on: July 01, 2011, 09:06:36 PM »

Anyone else find it vaguely entertaining that this author proposes that somehow the fundies from "every religion" could band together to blame Wicca for an std? That just makes him sound pretty ignorant in my book. It seems like the fundies would blame each other, not Wicca, which typically flies further under the radar.

Someone hasn't heard the term "Satanic Panic." Don't worry, it's trying really hard to come back in vogue. Even the Catholic Church, when noticing an uptick in the requests for exorcisms, blammed the public outgrowth of "spiritual and occult practices" as a primary cause...  :brickwall:

Point taken.
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