Wondering What They'll Think

It’s been one weird (long) month for me. I handed in the manuscript of the next book way at the beginning of the month, recently found out it’s already listed at amazon.com, and my publisher tells me that the initial copies have gone out to “early readers” – which is code for “people who might say nice things about it that we can put on the cover.”
So, my first readers. Well actually my 5th – 12th, or thereabouts, since a few people read the whole of it, or nearly so, while I was writing it. But still, nerve-wracking. I just hope if they hate it they don’t tell me that. But they have until late this fall to send in a blurb so I may not know for quite a while. It’s this waiting bit that really is the hard part.
(I hope they don’t hate it. Betty keeps telling me they won’t, but I think Betty’s biased.)

Screwed-up His Courage

Ah, another inspired headline from The Onion: Area Man Finally Works Up Courage To Sexually Harass Secretary

After having nearly resigned himself to another seven years of unspoken requests for sexual favors, Winters seized an opportunity to express his feelings Monday morning, offering to help Davis “get to the important stuff” as she bent over a file cabinet. Later, as further proof of his commitment, Winters suggested that he and Davis discuss a possible promotion at his beach house over the weekend.

(Thanks to Ronnie Rho for the RSS.)

That Forbes Article

I’m a little surprised, though I guess I shouldn’t be, by the brouhaha created by Forbes re-printing an article from 1973. (That’s a joke, folks, it’s a new article, but it could have been written in 1973. The whole premise of said article is that career women suck as wives and mothers – more likely to: not have kids, not stay home with kids, cheat, get divorces, etc. etc. etc.)
What amazes me is that this got by an editor. Is sexism so not apparent to people? I mean if a woman wrote an article in Forbes that men who have careers make bad husbands and fathers, the hue & cry would be outrageous. But writing an article judging how good women are in their “natural” role is perfectly reasonable?
The whole thing makes me ill. As does the use of the term feminazi. What a bunch of schlock. I’m reminded of that old feminist slogan, “Men of Quality Love Women’s Equality.” Not many quality men out there, apparently, at least not if the Forbes’ forum for discussion of said article is to be believed.
But the sense of humor in response is quite satisfying: this little slideshow on why to marry a career bitch, in particular. Oh, & Forbes took down the original article, so if you want to read it, it’s archived here.

Week 4: Buster Film Fest

Today at Film Forum: Buster Keaton’s Steamboat Bill, Jr., The Boat, My Wife’s Relations, Daydreams.
This is a stellar selection, folks. Steamboat Bill, Jr. is a classic Keaton film: poor soul in love, trying to get the girl, hit by a hurricane, floods, and even the entire side of a house.

The Boat is – simple & indescribable. It’s the one that clarifies why Beckett loved him so much.
Daydreams & My Wife’s Relations are two top-notch two-reelers, as well.

Wouldja Look At That?

Completely unbeknownst to me, She’s Not the Man I Married is now listed at amazon.com. No cover image yet, almost nothing at all yet, but there it is, and yes, you can pre-order it if you’d like.
That said, if you’re in the NYC area, you can get a signed copy in March when I’m doing publicity. Or in Philly in April. (Those are my only confirmed post-pub date events, so far.)

Not Chick Lit

It’s come up a couple of times in a few short days, so I thought instead of simmering until I boil over this time, I might address an issue sooner rather than later this time.
Women’s writing is not, en masse, to be called chick lit. Chick lit is a term used for a certain kind of fluffier, upwardly-mobile, sexually titillating kind of fiction or non-fiction about women’s lives.
Examples: Sex and the City, A Girl’s Guide to Hunting and Fishing.
Please do not refer to any book about women as chick lit, or to any book by a woman writer as chick lit.
Examples: Margaret Atwood is not chick lit.
For further clarification, you can check out the new(ish) anthology This is Not Chick Lit: Original Stories by America’s Best Women Writers.

Bordering on Misogyny

More thoughts on the MWMF controversy: I find sometimes the anger expressed toward the exclusionary policy-makers at the MWMF bordering on misogyny. Because relatively speaking, lesbians want to keep trans women out of a camp. But when I look around at the world, and what goes on with trans women, I see really horrible things, like rape and horribly brutal murders and cops and media using phrases like “he” or even “it.” & I wonder if sometimes the level of outrage against MWMF isn’t kind of – overamped. I mean they’re just keeping trans women out of a private music festival, not firing them or denying them housing or health treatment or hormones or life.
You know? I don’t think their policy is right, but I also think there are bigger eggs to fry, and using all this energy and rage over MWMF might find people exhausted when something else comes up.
I understand that it’s much easier to be very angry and disappointed with people who should know better, and yes, I think the organizers of the MWMF should know better. But their actions, in terms of comparison, are not as hateful as some of the anger describes it as being. Discriminaton and exclusion is horrible, yes, but it’s a music festival, not the right to live and liberty and the pursuit of happiness. I’m just not sure the level of anger is – well, appropriate.
But then I don’t think the level of hate and suspicion being tossed around by MWMFers toward trans women is anything like appropriate, either.
Neither of these reflections, by the way, has anything to do with what people have been saying on our message boards – they’re observations taken from other things I’ve been reading.