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Author of queer, quirky sci fi/fantasy books. On Amazon.
Editor of all fiction genres.

Monday, 21 November 2016

Speechless

I've opened my blog more than a few times in the last few weeks, trying to figure out what to say. But the American election happened, and Leonard Cohen passed away, and I don't know what to say anymore. All I have are words. I don't go out and protest, partly because I can't (for a variety of reasons). I am just a writer. Amazon's tightened up its reading and reviewing restrictions even further, something that won't exactly make it easier to spread the word about books.

What do I say in the face of this new world?

I've read some good articles lately - journalists offering sincere, grim advice on how to survive in Donald Trump's America, thinkpieces from people at intersectional breaking points, scientific journals sharing information about ancient hominids. In some ways, the world keeps marching on. In some ways, it's stopped forever. People have already died and suffered violence.

It's possible to write off my emotions as insulation from the world of violence and hate, but there's more to it than that. The legitimizing of violence and discrimination in such a public way is a new reality for all of us. It's one that I really thought years of reading and writing books would have prepared me for.

Maybe it prepared me more than I think it did, but the reality of living in a cautionary tale has not yet set in.

I am scared. Some of my favorite people have teamed up with artists to create things to sell, to help fund the American Civil Liberties Union and Planned Parenthood's initiatives. From here in Canada, in this country which the rest of the world has acclaimed a sort of save haven and paradise, I remain and wait for the disaster to make its way here.

I want to offer people hope and encouragement, but I don't know if I have that right now. The only thing I can say is that I am still here. I am alive, I abide, I survive. I hope my friends and family will survive, too. There will be hope in these dark times, even if I'm too numb to have it right now.

I don't know what the use of words is right now, but words are my medium, my weapon, and they are all I have to give. Soon I may have more to give, more jokes and critiques and flakes of light.

Hang in there, survive, keep fighting, and don't be ashamed to hide if it keeps you alive. We will get through this, as many of us as can get by. Do not stop voting or protesting or just talking about democracy, no matter which country you live in. Do not allow racist, phobic people to dictate the direction of your world or to take power.

These are just words, but maybe someone can make them real, and maybe, just maybe, I can use them to give the rest of you strength or comfort. Don't be ashamed to laugh when you can. Rest, recuperate, and when you can rise, build and make what you can. Doesn't matter whether it's a sandcastle or a barricade at a protest or a scarf for someone you care about. Just make something.

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As always, be excellent unto others, and don't be a dick.

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