Women In SFF: Forgotten and Ignored

Back in the days when this blog was called something else, I used to write a series called Publishing and Marketing where I would talk about some of the issues in the industry that were either systemic to a degree or something that I had personally seen. That was more than four years ago however, and partly because of my absence from the blog, that series has passed out of mind. One of the issues I raised in it however, has persisted, rather annoyingly and insultingly.

Yesterday I was made aware of a venn diagram that was being passed around on social media, one which positioned George RR Martin at the center as the focal point of all of fantasy fiction and extrapolated other fantasy authors in different labels such as “soldiers”, “horrors”, “jokers” etc. The glaring omission of course were female fantasy authors with only Robin Hobb getting a mention at the intersection of “horrors”, “builders” and “lovers”. Suffice to say, there’s been a lot of eyeballs on this in the last 2 days and there were some points I wanted to make about this ridiculous diagram.

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Desperate Hours by David Mack (Book Review)

Star Trek: Discovery was one of the most hyped new television shows of last year. Following on such legends such as Star Trek: The Original Series, or Star Trek: The Next Generation to name a few, the show promised a great deal in a kinda-sorta-familiar era of just a decade prior to the first events of the Star Trek: The Original Series. However, for me the show failed to live up to its hype, primarily because the protagonist was uninspiring and the scripts more so. Plus the writers seemed intent on changing around too many things and the entire show is a big visual and narrative dissonance from what we know of the Federation of the times.

Desperate Hours by Star Trek stalwart David Mack attempts to fill in some gaps left in the viewer’s understanding of who the show’s protagonist Michael Burnham is. She is a brand-new character for the show, and in this novel David attempts to show who she is and why she does what she does on the show, among other things. For me, the novel proved to be an even more disappointing experience than the show, as it seemed to rely too much on internal conflict and… disagreements among Starfleet officers. It just failed to deliver on its own promise.

Note: Some medium spoilers about Star Trek: Discovery are mentioned here.

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