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The Wordsmith's Forge
The Writing & Other Projects of Elizabeth Barrette
Monday Update 8-14-17
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ysabetwordsmith From: ysabetwordsmith Date: August 15th, 2017 04:54 am (UTC) (Link)

Re: Thank you!

>>What caught my eye was how much V is struggling with setting up V's environment. It's a strong suggestion to me that V was never allowed to make ANY decisions for V's own self while V was growing up.<<

V's parents were stuffy, ambitious perfectionists -- the kind of people who hire interior decorators to do everything. You can well imagine that V was never permitted to do things like turn a favorite outgrown shirt into a pillow or cover a table with stickers. Then V left them and was rather concerned with survival for a while, and later moved into a supply warehouse. These are not environments conducive to learning one's tastes.

Now V is on a space station, with a very different mix of materials and styles than what V grew up with. So V is simultaneously trying to juggle "what's fashionable" from youth, "what people expect here" that is new and unfamiliar, and "what I like" which is only vaguely known. V does like elegant things and sensual luxuries, but hasn't had much chance to explore that. V's body would love things like a bearskin rug or a vibrating chair, but whether V's heart would go along or such things are available is anyone's guess.

>>Even by the age of twelve I'd have had no problems getting furniture and all the little odds and ends picked out to my liking.<<

Yeah, I've always known what I liked. If I had to furnish a whole place quickly, though, I'd probably flail a bit too. If it was already furnished, I'd cut down the task by looking for what I hated to replace first, plus a few personal touches -- mosaic lamp! eee! -- then live on the rest to see if I wanted to keep any of it, before gradually swapping things I decided weren't right for me.

>> One thing that I've really had a hard time wrapping my head around is that V (even as an older teen or young twenty-something) still doesn't know who/what V likes sensually/sexually. <<

Alas, that is quite common for people with gender dysphoria, and not rare for alt-sex/gender folks in general. If your body doesn't fit the mainstream expectations, you can't take any of the instructions straight off the shelf. You have to figure out your own. If you are also uncomfortable with your body, there is a very strong temptation just to ignore it. Folks who don't have an overwhelming sex drive sometimes do just that.

And hell, I've known college girls who didn't know where their clitoris was or what to do with her, and college guys who'd never seen an actual naked female. So I gave a few impromptu lessons. Those were ordinary, straight, cisgender friends for the most part too.

>> The sense of sheer reluctance you've managed to put into V's responses in the sex shop....real eye opener there.<<

I'm glad that came through.

Maybe some of my trans or alt-sex/gender readers will chime in here on the topic of body knowledge and its challenges.

>>You've done a thorough job of bringing V to life. I've yet to see anything you've wrote about V not be true to V. Many writers would have produced at least one bobble by now.<<

Yay! I'm happy to hear that. It's challenging because the character is actually designed by someone else, but I have fun feeling out what V is like.
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