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Feminist Science Fiction Writer

I guess that’s what I am. I believe in equality for women, and I write science fiction. I think we need to celebrate women who write science fiction and fantasy.

But I’m also a stay at home mom, with four kids. Four brilliant, gifted children. This takes time from my day. I’ve been married for 20 years with one man and he’s the only man person I’ve ever had sex with. He’s also very artistic. Not as much taxi service or education management with this one, but a good relationship takes time out of every day.

So I am domestic and Mormon. So maybe I feel out of place, and feel like some feminists might not like my lifestyle and think it is counter productive to their vision. Plus I disagree with some feminists.

Also, I’ve written (really good) books about computer graphics and software. This takes time from my fiction, even past the day when the book has been released.

I have no time to complain, or frankly to listen to complaining. I don’t really have time to worry about where I stand in this feminism thing. There are two angles this attitude of mine takes, at least in regards to fiction.

First, is completely selfish. How will it affect my career? Are editors going to see that I’m a woman and reject a good story because of it? (But what of the work of women in the past that got me to the point where I’m not worried about what an editor will think about my gender?*)

If I’m at a convention and my choice in panels is: How to Write Really Awesome and Memorable Characters vs Why Women Science Fiction Authors are Forgotten, which one do you think I’m going to take? I would probably still skip a “celebrating women science fiction authors” panel, pick up the list, and go to the “How to write” or business of writing panel.

Second: Is exactly what I tell my children when they whine about something they do need or a reasonable want. STOP whining (or ranting as we adults like to call it), and let’s figure out how to act to get what you want. What is the solution? Cheryl Morgan talks about that in her post Female Invisibility Bingo. There she points to a book that I’m excited to get, Daughters of Earth: Feminist Science Fiction in the Twentieth Century. But I’d also like a different kind of book.

As a domestic Mormon woman, I would love to read domestic science fiction written by women that isn’t necessarily identified as feminist. Or just any plain science fiction written by women who just loved science, and fiction. So I’m going to go traipsing off in search of that, too. I have a question: did any pioneer or rural women write any science fiction?

Anyway, through Cheryl’s blog, she also pointed me to the Feminist SF Wiki. So that’s going to be fun. Clicked on just one author and found a book that looks cool: Memoirs of a Spacewoman.

*That’s another thing. There are ways we serve in this world, and pushing for women’s rights and recognition in industrialized nations where women can choose any career they want doesn’t appeal to me as much as trying to reduce domestic violence in Russia, or increasing women’s rights in Africa or the Middle East. Or just make sure children get vaccinated from diseases that our children haven’t suffered from in generations, and stop the baby formula from being promoted in Africa. There is so much crap in this world, I guess we’ll all choose our own corners to clean up.

So there is another question. Is there a woman in a slum somewhere in a developing nation thinking about some kind of fantasy or science fiction story? I wanna read that.

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2 comments

  1. Ami,
    Try the books of Octavia Butler. They have a different alternate voice, especially her book of short stories, Bloodchild and Other Stories (1996).
    Eric

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