July 14th, 2012


Why People Hate Female Characters

Here's an interesting exploration of fanhate directed at female characters.  Common reasons seem to include just that they're female, or that they're annoying, or that they don't contribute enough to the show.  

Can't do much about people who just don't like female characters.  The other two, however, often stem from bad writing.  I often dislike female characters because they're boring, or they manifest stereotypes, or they aggravate the crap out of me like some women I've actually met.  Which is not entertaining.  I want female characters to make a difference in the plot, to do something other than sex/romance, and to be halfway decent human beings that I might actually want to spend 5 minutes with (unless they are villainesses).  And if they are villainesses, then I want to see them kick the hero's balls down the street.

You can imagine how rarely I am satisfied by TV, movies, or books in this regard.  Hence my passion for crowdfunding: "I'd like a formidable, interesting hera please." "Here she is." "KTHXWOW."

Defining Steampunk

Here's an interesting essay about defining steampunk.

When I defined steampunk as a theme for my Poetry Fishbowl project one month, I broke the term in half.  "Steam" tells the kind of technology at the core of the genre, which indicates the timeframe.  "Punk" means you take the core concepts and issues of an age, and twist them, and look at the underside of society.  And both aspects speak to the mood: steampunk has the bright charm of the steam age and the gritty challenge of punk culture.

I think that steampunk is becoming a popular genre right now because cycles of history repeat, and we're dealing with some of the same major issues.  Classism, racism, sexism, and the role of technology in our lives are all prevalent right now.  So we look for a genre that lends itself well to telling stories about that stuff, because then we can explore volatile issues at a safe remove.  We can examine steampunk worlds and see how various solutions work or don't work.  We can think about what ideas we'd like to borrow for ourselves, and what we'd like to avoid.