Novel Things

I made my goals for Camp Nanowrimo! I have about 51,000 words up on my fiction writing blog. Unfortunately, I didn’t quite manage to finish the story, but I’m close.  I might have it done pretty soon, and you’ll be able to read it there when I do.

Caveats:  The sections it’s broken into now are arbitrary, not sensible chapter breaks.  It’s a first draft and I’m open to critique.  And the thing I put at the start of every post there: My main character is a Filipina trans woman and I am not, so if you want to complain about that or have any advice on how to write it better, let me know.

Thoughts on writing a character who is not me:  I’m tired of seeing cishet white people as the main characters of everything in the world, and while the ideal is to get more non-cishet non-white people writing, does that mean I’m not allowed to write?

In a sense, yes.  If there was someone in a good position to take my place, I’m down with some affirmative action.  On the other hand, no, I want to write.  This isn’t about who’s getting book deals because no one is ever going to publish me.  I’m not taking a resource from anyone else by writing and I deserve a creative outlet, as a human with needs.  If you have a choice between my book and one by an actual Filipina trans woman, buy hers.  Your choice.

Anyway, as a white writer, I’m in that position to make some odd calls.  I’m a white pansexual genderqueer masc-ish dude-esque person, and I’ve written a gay black cis male character, and now a Filipina pansexual trans lady.

Writing the black cis gay character was done in third person, and it helped.  I thought of the character as more different from who I am, so he became more of a character than an experience for me.  I like to think he was pretty charming.  I hope to get that one edited and self-published later this year, maybe the current thing as well?

I’ve written the newer character in first person.  I chose her ethnicity based on people I was familiar with who seemed most similar to the white people I know, so the perspective wouldn’t be too far off.  I’m sure there are some big differences in their experience of life, but Filipino Americans seem culturally pretty similar to poor-to-middle class white people.  I asked a coworker from the Philippines what he thought American cousins were like, and to him they seemed fully American in values and personality.

That’s not to say they’re totally the same.  That would be absurd.  Just a little easier for me, as a writer to bridge the gap in my head.  I could take my voice and try to imagine the differences from there, understanding more these days than I used to about the effects of transmisogyny, objectification, fetishization of Asian women, and the way dark skinned Asians get that combined with worse classist and colonialist mentality.  Starting with a middle class AMAB character meant starting with a voice I was more familiar with, then I’d pull in other elements as needed.

Writing a trans woman felt pretty easy to me because I’ve had a lot of experience seeing gender dysphoria in other people around me, and because in a different world, 5% this way or that, it could be me.  The only reason I don’t present more trans now is because I don’t have dysphoria pushing me to have no other choice, and if a person has the luxury of staying in the closet on this planet of motherfuckers, it’s a safer place to be.

Most important:  I don’t claim to have done this perfectly.  I don’t know all the facts and more importantly don’t have all the experiences that inform a character like the one I chose.  Wide open to criticism.  Say what you like.  Of course, as with my usual moderation, people acting in bad faith or revealing regressive values will get mothafuckin’ nuked.  Not a problem for most of you.

U Might Not be Aware of…

Coming soon to a something near you! Series in the vein of Unsolved Mysteries, In Search Of, and Look Around You: U Might Not be Aware of…

This week on You Might Not be Aware of… Monster Fuckers. Hot on the heels of the success of the fish fucking movie, a bunch of people on internet have decided to fly their freak flags a little higher, lose any shame they once possessed over the fact that they wanna fuck monsters.

They aren’t new, but they don’t really have a good name yet. Furries are furries, adult babies are adult babies, but monster fuckers are not, as yet, mentionable in polite conversation. What will they become known as, when they become more respectable? If that’s the right word?

Anyhow, the upcoming Venom movie is the newest thing to get ’em drooling. Enjoy that thought, because now…

U are aware of monster fuckers!


Chunk of Novel

Roughly the first 26,000 words of my novel are available to read on my new writing tumblr, The Voice of Hell. It’s a rough draft so feel free to hit me up for any shenanigans or mistakes. I shared part of this with someone a few years ago. If you’re reading, it’s got more words now.

See you all in HELL, where we’ll BURN BURN BURN.

I mean on my blog, where you can read what u like. Yes. That is what I meant.

EDIT TO ADD – More like 37,000 words up now. Watch me burn!

EDIT AGAIN TO ADD – I’ve got close to 45,000 words now, but they’re not all up at the blog yet. Less than 6,000 to go until my novel is officially novel length! It’ll be the first time I’ve done that in years. Can’t wait.

EDIT TO ADD – Novel is over 50,000 words! I made my goal! Except the book isn’t done yet, so I’m doing a mad race to hopefully get that done today – April 30th.

EDIT TO ADD – Novel over 56,000 words but not quite done. Still had one of my most productive writing days ever, and unusually my cabin at campnanowrimo reached a hundred percent of its word goal. Wotta time!


Trump Ups his “Kill the Poor” Game

Via The Root, cheeto hitler signed a fucking executive order mandating that people on welfare must work or lose benefits. This kind of policy has been demonstrated to kill people dead in the UK.

Maybe he figured out that the demographic that has lost the most economically under him was the very group that voted for him – upper middle class, mostly white people – and he wanted to extend the damage to poor people who would have prevented his election if we weren’t hedged out of voting so hard. Or maybe he just wanted to make good on a life’s dream and see us in the ground.

I’m fortunate to not be one of the people who will be killed by this specific turn of policy, but nonetheless,

Eat shit and die, Mr. President, and all your bloodsucking racist greedlord friends. That’s not a threat, it’s a request. Ya better think about it baby.

EDIT TO ADD – Significant oversight in this article: I should have mentioned this will affect the disabled, primarily. They’ll be the first to go, as it always is with nazis. Smash American Fascism Now.


Camp NaNoWriMo 2018, Part One

NaNoWriMo has a spinoff thing called Camp NaNoWriMo which runs two non-consecutive months, and I’m doin’ it, you know?  Since I lowered my word goal to twenty-five thousand, it looks like I might actually win for the first time in years.  I like that feeling.

I’m adding those twenty-five thou to a failed NaNo from the past, which got to seventeen thousand words.  So between the two, it’ll be forty-two thou.  Which isn’t a full NaNoWriMo novel, but it’s getting closer.

Anyhow, I can’t discuss the particulars of the story with my dude because it isn’t his thing, and I can see why.  I’ve been pretty over the top with the lesbionic melodrama.  But I’m kinda sorta proud of it just the same, so I wanted to tell somebody.

Hey everybody, I’m doing it!  I’m writing a novel.  First time in years.  Feels good, man.


Conservativism = Cowardice and Greed

Literally every conservative belief stems from either cowardice or greed.  They like to say similar things about progressives, but it doesn’t stand up to scrutiny.  Spelled out simply:

Conservative Position – Cowardice or Greed?

  • Anti-abortion – Cowardice
  • Anti-tax – Greed
  • Anti-regulation – Greed
  • Anti-social services – Greed
  • Pro-gun – Cowardice
  • Cop Worship – Cowardice
  • Anti-immigration – Cowardice
  • Theocracy – Cowardice

Afraid to look upon death, or even human life with the slightest ounce of honesty, conservatives project themselves onto the aborted and shiver in terror and disgust.  They imagine that life as a person of perfect potential, surrounded by and dependent on evil sinful woman parts for survival.  So scary.

And they are so trapped in that imagination that they can’t do the right moral math.  Human lives often FUCKING SUCKKKKKKK.  Any woman considering abortion is clearly not in the ideal circumstance to be making a happy successful human being.  Far from it, especially in a place as conservative as the United States.  An unborn human has no concept of life, of potential, of the future, of where it’s going and what it might mean to lose that.

Any human that is born is guaranteed to experience pain and frustration at some point in their life.  Plenty of people wish they had been aborted.  I don’t feel that sad about shit but I know damn well it wouldn’t matter if I hadn’t come to be, and I would have been spared a ton of pain and humiliation and anger and sorrow.

Again, I’m a Neurotypical McGee, happy to be alive and watch my TV.  But I’ve got the moral clarity of seeing things as they are, and caring about people enough to want them to have what they actually need.  I’m not trembling in fear of sin, in fear of death, in fear of a sadistic super ghost that I have to love.  Grow the fuck up, conservatives.

Anti-taxes, anti-regulation, anti-social services:  These are mostly about greed, about being too short-sighted and willfully ignorant and cruel to take responsibility for the world around you.  But there’s an element of cowardice as well – the idea some evil poor people might benefit from your wealth.  Piss on that.

Gun fondling and cop worship are the most blatant displays of cowardice, though there’s an element of fascist death fetishism in there for good measure.  I admit, the symbols of death have a toxically delicious appeal.  I’ll bang my head to that beat, watch movies about bad guys getting blasted left and right.

But the reality of guns?  The physical presence of them?  The idea of what they can do to a living creature?  Creepy as fuck.  Get that goddamn shit away from me.  What sort of wet dream lets you think you can control that?  Why do you think YOU should have the power to say who lives and who dies, or that your state-appointed executioners should be able to do the same?  Who are you so fucking afraid of?  Don’t answer, it’s obvious as hell.

I’d allow for heavily regulated single shot hunting rifles.  Hunting in the first world is a hobby for twisted minds, but it could help regulate unbalanced animal populations and feed some people.  But even then, why not use a fucking spear?  Cowardice, that’s why.

Being against immigration is the purest cowardice, but more than some of these categories it makes me wonder if I should have added cruelty to the list.  The racism to imagine another group of humans is inferior to your group, to imagine they have nefarious motives against you, to think they deserve to fucking die rather than inconvenience you with their presence?  Cruel.  But mostly crybaby cowardly.

Theocracy likewise, the notion this is a “christian nation” and needs to be legally mandated as such.  The fear your one true religion will lose ground if it isn’t enforced by the apparatus of state?  That your cherished illusions will feel more ephemeral, might dissipate and leave you with nothing but a grimly real view of the grave?  Why are you so afraid of facing competition, dominionists?  Ya cowards.

At last, let’s look at how a conservative might play this game, and answer the charges:

Progressive Position – Cowardice or Greed

  • Pro-abortion – Cowardice Compassion
  • Pro-tax – Greed Responsibility
  • Pro-regulation – Greed Responsibility

Honestly, not much point in elaborating the progressive positions.  Even conservatives recognize a lot of them as being motivated by compassion, but then they turn around to demonize caring about people – call it weak or foolish, especially in misogynist terms.

I do think they’d make the case that being in favor of abortion is because evil should-be mommies are too afraid to die (or ruin lives) to bring a lump of cells to term.  For shame!  But they’ve tried all sorts of smears that don’t make sense.

And they are always trying to say that taxation for the purposes of paying for social services is the greed of a lazy underclass of subhumans out to take yer hard-earned dollars, you (venal immigrant exploiting criminal) contractors and red-blooded manz. There’s a lot of bipartisan fawning over the middle class but I say fuck ’em. That’s where a lot of white fascism lies.

Anyhow, cowardice and greed – modern conservative beliefs are completely encapsulated in that simple phrase, in that shitty little binary.  I should make it explicitly clear I’m including “fiscal conservatives” with more socially progressive beliefs.  Fuck yes, I’m including them.  Just because you wanna smoke weed with your gay friend and your black friend doesn’t mean you aren’t a goddamn piece of shit.

Fuck any and all conservatives everywhere forever.


Hyper-specificity in Animal Cognition

I’m a fairly unread ignoramus, so when I get to talking science, I do a lot of crawling out on limbs. Let’s see how far I fall from this one.

Some years ago I read a book by Temple Grandin on animal behavior, and how she derives insight into it as an autistic person. One of the ideas is that animals are best understood when we notice their reactions to stimuli can be hyper-specific. A horse might think men in hats are cool, but men in blue hats are nightmarish. A cow could become anxiously fixated on the motion of a denim jacket on a fence, flapping in the breeze.

The other day while toasting some bread this randomly came to me: maybe animals are also hyper-specific in cognitive abilities, and that could be cause for scientists to fail in observing the full extent of their intelligence. There are fundamental aspects of cognition (thinking ability) such as object permanence that are studied by scientists when ranking the abilities of animals. Some degree of object permanence has been demonstrated in some animals, and found lacking in others. But what if the tests are missing important data?

The idea put simply: Animals can have “advanced” types of thought, but for hyper-specific situations. The cat was found to be somewhat deficient in object permanence in a test involving hidden food, but maybe they have much better OP on a different kind of situation – or even with a different kind of food. Maybe they failed the trickiest part of the test with a tasty cat treat, but they would have succeeded with a live scorpion – something they might eat in the wild.

Likewise an animal could have an extremely simple brain, like a clownfish or tarantula, but still be able to perform complex thoughts in a narrow domain. I’ve heard of what can only be described as play behavior in turtles and even sea horses, and that’s usually thought of as the domain of more advanced animals. What could we be missing, because we didn’t catch the test organism in the exact right circumstance?

Forgive me for a moment in tying this subject back to humans – specifically those with cognitive impairment – in the following example. No equivalence is intended, it just demonstrates the point well. I read in an Oliver Sacks book that he had observed a woman with Down’s Syndrome under clinical circumstances and found her to have severe intellectual disability by every tested metric. But then he walked past her in a courtyard when no test was involved, and found her singing and dancing – abilities superior to what would have been expected from the tests alone.

Humans are the most advanced thinking animals on the planet. Even a heavily impaired human can do some amazing things. But maybe non-human animals are a little sharper than we give them credit for. Keep your eyes out for it, and as a good skeptic, think of alternative explanations even if you see something exciting. That’s all.

Sleepy Thoughts on Cannibalism

Content Warnings: Cannibalism, Eroticized Murder, Death, Sex, Misogyny, Children’s Sexuality. I don’t like that list. It didn’t feel as creepy writing it out as it does in summary.

Fressen. It’s a German word for eating, which I’m told implies animalistic action, devouring with lust. It was used in Rammstein’s song “Mein Teil,” which was (in poor taste, haha) about the German cannibal Armin Meiwes. That guy thought he could get away with killing and eating a man, by getting a willing victim – someone who wanted to be eaten. It didn’t work out.

Instinct is imperfect. It can give us desires, some oddly specific (cats must toss dirt around until the stinkiness stops, or flee the scene if it isn’t fast enough), some more abstract (the bug wants to rub its bottom on the big red thing). We want something from each other, but what is it? Grandma thinks you’re so sweet she could just gobble you up. We use our mouths to kiss, to suck, to nibble, to bite, to eat. Concepts get confused. Paraphilias happen. Vore and its variants. Sexualized cannibalism in serial killer types.

This is not to say killers are merely confused and therefore excused, just that it’s not surprising our brains can get scrambled on a feeling. It’s not easy to relate to on an emotional level, but maybe in the very abstract. What do we want from each other, in lust? To join, to push into each other, to pass through each other, to what? The impulse is vague until our socialization and learning shapes it.

It’s probably made worse by the human ability to teach. The more we can learn from words, the less we require instinct, right? Maybe our most teachable instincts are fading to make room for new operating systems and character plots on TV shows. If you look at the demented fantasies of MRA / PUA / incel types, it looks like they only see sex acts as achievements, notches on a belt, things to be performed in the rote pantomime of the crappiest mainstream porn.

Lessons over desires. But then, can we figure ourselves out by instinct alone? Maybe. A lot of us learn how to masturbate by accident and experiment. But maybe less so now. I’m of the last generation to not have ready access to internet porn at the age of eleven. That’s pretty bad news for some kids.

This is rambling thoughts, no thesis. I’ll leave it here.

In Honor of Down with Cis Day

I like to have some fun art or good foolery on here for International Down with Cis Day, but I am lost in the woods of Camp Nanowrimo.  It’s a shame, because lately the cis have been at it again.  They deserve a good downing.

A few weeks ago I saw a young trans lady in my place of work.  I feel safe in assuming her preferred pronouns as her entire presentation was femme, hair and makeup laser precise.  She came up to the counter with her mother to buy some goods.  I make chit-chatty conversation and before I know it, her mother had misgendered her three times.

Come the fuck on, cis mom.  The girl was super sweet and maybe overly friendly through it all, like she wasn’t used to customer service people being nice to her or something.  To your mom, I say this:  Your child isn’t being validated by you and that makes her highly vulnerable to abusers and exploiters.  Support your trans babies, or get run over.  The Down with Cis bus is on the move.

And more recently, on the Transgender Day of Visibility, this big tall guy came in with an androgynous teen or young adult child of his.  They were cleanly buzzed on sides and back, wearing nothing at all feminine, and got female-gendered by dad a few times.  Well, who knows?  Maybe he doesn’t know from this trans stuff, maybe the child isn’t even trans.  Or maybe, he misgendered them to a total stranger for no fucking reason on a transgender awareness day.  Fuck that shit.

Anyhow, down with cis, goddammit.