November 24th, 2017

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Welcome to Winterfaire 2017

The Winterfaire spreads out as far as the eye can see. Some booths show streamers of red and green, while others sport blue and silver. All of them offer treasure after shining treasure. Music fills the air with lyrics of Christmas, Hannukah, Kwanzaa, Solstice, and Yule. From the Wordsmith's Forge comes the bright chiming of words being hammered into literature. Delicious scents of hot chocolate, spiced cider, peppermint, baking cookies, and gingerbread tantalize the appetite. Smiling, laughing shoppers amble from booth to booth with lists in hand. Vendors grin back, calling out, "Come try, come buy...!"

I know a lot of artists, writers, musicians, crafters, and other talented folks who make some of their living from their creative endeavors. I don't always have the money to support them as much as I'd like, but what I can do is set up a virtual faire where vendors can offer their wares to an audience that likes crafts, literature, and small businesses. For those of you doing your holiday shopping, here's an opportunity to buy something made with love, something unusual or unique, in a way that helps make it possible for creative people to go on creating wonders. And there will be no traffic jams, stampedes, or gunfights at the Winterfaire!



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Disability in Comics

Here's a thoughtful article on the ups and downs of disability in comics, particularly the X-Men.

One of the interesting things I've noticed is the mention of training.  You know who actually has a pretty decent broadband awareness of how to cope with all the isms that should be wasms?  Shiv, of all people.  Because Boss White won't put up with that shit in his gang, so he's trained all his supervillains -- and even the naries -- with at least basic expectations like "treat women with respect" and "don't manhandle someone's adaptive equipment."  Shiv is short on details, yes, because he's young and still kind of a jerk.  But he's gotten more of an introduction than most superheroes in mainstream comics have, and it shows.  There are dozens of tiny instances where he does the right thing because he's been taught  to by someone he respects enough to mind.

As for the rest of the examples, I've got characters in wheelchairs (with a variety of conditions), the whole range of traumatic stress conditions, a wide variety of mental illnesses and injuries (including claustrophobia), vision impairment (hmm, though I had colorblindness but it's not coming up in a search), loads of sexual assault survivors (including a lot of my supervillains), and so forth.  Many of the prompts come from people with disabilities, which I think really helps the accuracy.

So how do you think we're doing?