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Tuesday, June 04, 2013

SFWA burns a witch

Amanda takes exception to the ongoing SFWA witch hunt, which is being led by Rapey McRaperson and his sidekick, Rachel Swirsky:
What did Resnick and Malzberg do that was so bad, you ask? Well, at the beginning of the column in issue 200, he admits to have written — gasp — porn. And he sold it to a “lady” editor. He identifies female authors and editors as “lady” writer and “lady” editor. Oh, and he’s pissed — not that I necessarily blame him. He and Malzberg had been attacked in the SFWA forums for stating their opinions  in what is basically an op-ed column (gee, I thought that’s what op-eds were for). People were demanding that SFWA censor them by not letting them write the column any longer and, gasp, he called them out on it.

Could he have been more circumspect? Probably. Are some of his ideas old-fashioned? Of course. But that isn’t, in my opinion, the real crime with what’s been going on. The crime is how the detractors behaved. They took their issues with Resnick and Malzberg public without giving the public the opportunity to read the columns in question and make up their own mind. They attacked two men who have more experience in the field and, in the vast majority of cases, more sales than these attackers will ever hope to have. Instead of simply asking to post a counter piece to what Resnick and Malzberg said, they went on the attack, with all the name calling and vitriol they accused the two gentlemen — gasp, have I just committed the crime of sexism by calling them gentlemen? — of being sexist and misogynistic.

In other words, this very vocal but apparently small group resorted to bullying and threats to leave or never join SFWA in order to impose their own views on SFWA. Pardon me for not jumping on their bandwagon but I don’t support bullies and you can sure as hell bet that if the tables were turned on them, they’d be whining about how we just don’t understand and we aren’t enlightened or whatever the latest bullshit politically correct term happens to be.

This is an issue, if you want to give it that much credence, that should have been handled in-house. But no, these bullies took their complaint public but didn’t want to give the public the whole story. After all, if they did, the public might just see through all their catch phrases and righteous indignation. They demanded SFWA act so this atrocity never be allowed to occur again.

And SFWA caved and did so publicly and in a way that adds to the condemnation that has been heaped on Resnick and Malzberg, as well as the editor of the Bulletin.
The much-criticized editor of the SFWA Bulletin, Jean Rabe, resigned under pressure today.  It appears Mike Resnick and Barry Malzberg will be stripped of their column as well. It shouldn't be long before all criticism of women, romance novels in space, and the Obama administration are banned in the SFWA Forum.

It's absolutely freaking hilarious.  I just wish I could share all the self-congratulatory back-patting over all the brave, brave courage that the censorious freakshows believe they are exhibiting by boldly taking on chainmail bikinis and references to ladies.

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52 Comments:

Blogger Nate June 04, 2013 9:05 PM  

John Scalzi = Governor Lepetomaine.

Harumph!

Anonymous Anonymous June 04, 2013 9:07 PM  

Wow, Scalzi sounds like some kind of sissy fag.

Anonymous Cranberry June 04, 2013 9:12 PM  

Good Lord. Reading these posts about the SFWA just reminds me that some people really don't ever leave high school.

My favorite genre, the fiction of the possible, being molded by petulant tattle-tales. No wonder I haven't come across a good book in a long time. (I started reading ATOB but time is limited. So far, loving it.)

Blogger Nate June 04, 2013 9:28 PM  

"Wow, Scalzi sounds like some kind of sissy fag."

His name has actually become a slang term for "sissy fag". I mean.. what do you expect?

Blogger Nate June 04, 2013 9:31 PM  

http://www.urbandictionary.com/define.php?term=scalzied

Anonymous Jack Amok June 04, 2013 9:32 PM  

John Scalzi = Governor Lepetomaine.

I suppose that would make that other guy - the one who posed with Scalzi making fun of female book covers, Jim something or other I think - that would make him Hedly Lamar?

Anonymous Pete June 04, 2013 9:34 PM  

So why don't you just start a new association that bans the feminist crap and promotes real science fiction?

Anonymous jack June 04, 2013 10:02 PM  

Pete June 04, 2013 9:34 PM

So why don't you just start a new association that bans the feminist crap and promotes real science fiction?

Vox has already stated, on another thread, that he does not have the interest or time to start a counter to the SFWA. I wish he would but understand the time problems. It would really be awesome.

Anonymous Daniel June 04, 2013 10:05 PM  

There's zero need. The most interesting sci-fi is just being written. It has nothing to do with which club the member is in.

The SFWA was formed in the 1960s for the 30 or so major writers in the genre to band together to withhold works from the magazines, in order to get them to raise their pay rates for short stories above the old pulp rate from the 30s. That's why a "qualifying" magazine to get you membership is still something like 5-cents a word.

Times have changed. If you want people to pay you for your stories, just write one and make it available.

The pay, over the life of the author, is significantly higher. The SFWA has little leverage left in the industry, no vision, and - if it had a dick - would stomp on it at any opportunity.

I so wish I could join.

In other words, the Men of Science Fiction and Fantasy is a club that exists, accepts no women as members with the rare exception of the bizarre mutant woman who is genetically incapable of screwing up the genre, and includes:

Ralph Lalonde
Larry Correia
John C. Wright
Mike Williamson
Hugh Howey
Dan McGirt
Joseph Lallo
Brian Pratt (made $100,000 in 2011. Heard of him? I'd be surprised. Does he care? Very much doubt it.)
Quinn Loftis
our host

And the list goes on. I think Wright and maybe one or two of the others are SFWA members, but they certainly didn't need to be SFWA members to have plenty of success in Sci Fi/Fantasy. It's a club with no dues except sweat at the keyboard and no requirements but a functional set of balls.

Anonymous elkay14 June 04, 2013 10:06 PM  

It is no surprise they took their issues public; they need to get the herd involved. Rabbits.

Anonymous Godfrey June 04, 2013 10:10 PM  

This is why modern SF is so horrible bad. It's written by morons.

Thank goodness the old books haven't been burned yet.

Anonymous FP June 04, 2013 10:16 PM  

"I just wish I could share all the self-congratulatory back-patting over all the brave, brave courage that the censorious freakshows believe they are exhibiting by boldly taking on chainmail bikinis and references to ladies."

The internet meme hampster dance comes to mind. Slutwalks good, chainmail bikinis bad.

Blogger James Dixon June 04, 2013 10:17 PM  

Pete, I repeat: Shh, you'll give the game away.

Blogger Nate June 04, 2013 10:22 PM  

"Vox has already stated, on another thread, that he does not have the interest or time to start a counter to the SFWA. I wish he would but understand the time problems. It would really be awesome."

Pity... because I bet the OC and I would be willing to help if he did.

Anonymous O.C. June 04, 2013 10:30 PM  

Nope. Been there, done that.

As a past member of the SFWA Board of Directors, and a current member of the Secret Inner Council of Former Members of the SFWA Board of Directors, all I can say is that the organization is an outstanding example of Pournelle's Iron Law of Bureaucracy at work.

The funny part is, even Pournelle doesn't seem to recognize that.

Anonymous O.C. June 04, 2013 10:40 PM  

The Iron Law of Bureaucracy has been stated in many ways over the years, but I like this formulation best:

In any bureaucracy there are two types of people: those dedicated to doing whatever it was the bureaucracy was originally created to do, and those dedicated to gaining power within the bureaucracy itself. In time the second type will always come to occupy all the positions of authority within the organization, and drive out the first type.

Blogger Nate June 04, 2013 10:42 PM  

"Nope. Been there, done that."

Who needs bureacracy?

a few of us pick some member submitted articles and put out a publication.

What's so hard?

Anonymous dh June 04, 2013 10:52 PM  

OC, just curious, I assume that you agree with VD on most issues. How did you get to be on the board of directors? Did your views not get vetted?

Anonymous DonReynolds June 04, 2013 10:52 PM  

I have spent much of my time around women in my life and I have never seen gender relations are poisonous, guarded and defensive as they are today. Even if a man is clever enough to not use the forbidden words and phrases AND he manages not to respond to all the provocations and challenges that at tossed at his feet, we still have those women who get thoroughly pissed because "they can tell what he is thinking"! Once they believe they know your inner thoughts, then they feel the need to speak on your behalf and put words in your mouth with a garden shovel, of course she is responding to your non-conversation after each non-utterance. I do not find this to be limited to menopausal blabbermouths. A good many of the younger women are the same way, if not worse.

I am glad that I will be 60 this month and have already enjoyed the company of women for decades, so I am no longer compelled to figure out how best to get along with them. I really do not think it is possible to do so any longer and still retain any shred of dignity and self-respect. I leave it to others to figure out how to improve gender relations.

Anonymous dh June 04, 2013 10:58 PM  

I just wish I could share all the self-congratulatory back-patting over all the brave, brave courage that the censorious freakshows believe they are exhibiting by boldly taking on chainmail bikinis and references to ladies.

VD, just out of interest, is there any rule stating you can't paraphrase from the board? I know your last post was that you can't quote from it, which I guess is fine, but is there anything preventing you from excerpting, rewriting, and posting that rewritten summary?

It's like putting the tip in a little bit.. that we can see how it feels...

Anonymous Northern Observer June 04, 2013 10:58 PM  

Anyone have a link to the original article that started all of this?

Blogger IM2L844 June 04, 2013 11:12 PM  

Girls are funny. I like 'em.

Anonymous Stinky McGee June 04, 2013 11:13 PM  

SFWA - Society For Whiney Asses? If not, change it to better reflect all these goings on.

Anonymous LCB June 04, 2013 11:23 PM  

Just some more witch-hunting in the wonderful world of SF and Fantasy, there've been plenty of kerfuffles and dumb controversies like this over the years, usually over something fairly innocuous, and the Professional Outrage Brigade swings into action, joined by the Social Justice Warriors Auxillary on tumblr and Twitter and Facebook. The screeching harpies won't be satisfied until their enemies are punished and if you disagree with them you're the most racist sexist ableist misogynist monster from Patriarchy City.

Anonymous kh123 June 04, 2013 11:25 PM  

"These... these Men of Science Fiction and Fantasy, as you call them, are better than..."

They can't be much worse than fan fiction that reads like a Final Fantasy wardrobe breakdown.

Anonymous Will Best June 04, 2013 11:26 PM  

In time the second type will always come to occupy all the positions of authority within the organization, and drive out the first type.

This is why NGO's should have 20 year lifespans, and government agencies should require 2/3rds votes of congress for renewals every 10 years.

The percentage of billionaires that are spinning in their grave due to what their foundations are doing is probably 100. I have to give Buffet props for learning in the sense that he places a fair amount of control on the money he gives away so that it is used by people he approves of.

Blogger Nate June 04, 2013 11:35 PM  

"How did you get to be on the board of directors? Did your views not get vetted?"

Not to speak out of turn here... but if I recall correctly at one point OC was a democrat.

Anonymous Boogeyman June 04, 2013 11:40 PM  

Finally bothered to go over there and have a look. Ended up leaving a comment and being glad I'm not a member of their little group. Until you run into such people acting as they do it's hard to believe they actually exist.

Dear God! Is it any reason the aliens never openly land? We must be like the Mogadishu of the Milky Way, a primitive, violent place people in the first world might know about, might see as they fly over it on the way to somewhere else, but would never, ever go to.

Anonymous Susan June 04, 2013 11:47 PM  

You guys ignoring the troll is hilarious. I'm thinking there is some major hissy fitting going on right now. If somebody does start a competing SFWA association and get some decent reading material out there again, I might give SF/F a try again. Right now I am liking Clive Cussler and Steve Berry for my reading.

Anonymous O.C. June 05, 2013 12:26 AM  

@dh I assume that you agree with VD on most issues.

That assumption would be incorrect. We agree on some issues, and disagree very strongly on others. However, we both are capable of engaging in dialog with people with whom we disagree without catching the vapors.

Anonymous jack June 05, 2013 12:35 AM  

Hey OC. I still have hope for that sequel to Cyberpunk. You know, the one where Mikey saves the planet from all the Russian/Chinese/NorthKorean/MiddleEastern/Massachusetts hackers. Write the thing Man. We will buy.

Anonymous dh June 05, 2013 12:37 AM  

That assumption would be incorrect. We agree on some issues, and disagree very strongly on others. However, we both are capable of engaging in dialog with people with whom we disagree without catching the vapors.

Are any of the issues you agree on contrary to the feminist orthodoxy?

Anonymous O.C. June 05, 2013 12:41 AM  

@Nate but if I recall correctly at one point OC was a democrat.

True, but irrelevant. At the time I was on the Board, twenty-some years ago, the membership still consisted primarily of Type One people, and what mattered was the work you did, not the ideologies you espoused. In those days it was possible for avowed Communists and equally avowed Libertarians to recognize each other as colleagues, have a friendly drink together, and talk shop.

Sounds like something from another world, now.

Anonymous dh June 05, 2013 12:43 AM  

Sounds like something from another world, now.

The internet makes it seem otherwise, but I find this still to be true in most situations. If you have strong local connections they tend to bypass political and even religious connections - at least in my experience.

Anonymous Inane Rambler June 05, 2013 1:05 AM  

"The internet makes it seem otherwise, but I find this still to be true in most situations. If you have strong local connections they tend to bypass political and even religious connections - at least in my experience."

Most girls in college are unthinking leftists (as well as most attractive girls across the board), but you can get along with them as long as you either a. don't talk politics, or b. talk about them in such a way that she's more amused than offended by your wrong-thinking.

Now, interactions on the internet tend to make people much more conscious and defensive about their political views.

Blogger Brad Andrews June 05, 2013 1:50 AM  

> In those days it was possible for avowed Communists and equally avowed Libertarians to recognize each other as colleagues, have a friendly drink together, and talk shop.

That is the toughest thing today and the reason things tend to sway they way they have been. Standing up now puts a huge risk in front of you. Still worth doing at times, but you have to be much more circumspect at other times.

Anonymous TheExpat June 05, 2013 2:00 AM  

Thank goodness the old books haven't been burned yet.

Burning is so passe. With e-readers they can just retroactively auto-edit now. And anyone who reads ancient paper tomes can just be ignored or dismissed with derisive finger pointing and shrieks of tree-killer (plantist!) and luddite.

Anonymous Daniel June 05, 2013 2:25 AM  

Next to the President's Letter regarding this issue is...

SFWA Featured Author
Cat Rambo’s latest book is NEAR+FAR, a collection of short SF stories from Seattle-based Hydra House Books.

Isn't Hydra House the one that the SFWA came out very strongly against and has declared as a non-qualifying market? Should their featured author be one whose book happens to be published by an extremely notorious non-qualifier?

http://www.sfwa.org/2013/06/presidential-statement-on-the-sfwa-bulletin/

The irony of a pair of woman-degrading cross-dressers taking offense at a woman's clothing on behalf of manateekind is delicious.

Anonymous The other skeptic June 05, 2013 2:36 AM  

Finally, a Warrior Princess

Anonymous Boogeyman June 05, 2013 2:36 AM  

Aaaand they pulled my comment over there. You know what, I blame this site. I have become far to accustomed to speaking my mind without fear of offending someone. I have become far too thick skinned and willing to listen to an opposing point of view. I've even been forced to logically defend my beliefs. You awful, awful people, you've all forced me to think for myself and toughen up. How do you live with yourselves?

I long for the coming of the Mad Max culture/economy. At least then you'll be able to rightly shoot such politically correct A-holes with a crossbow from a speeding dune buggy.

Anonymous VryeDenker June 05, 2013 3:32 AM  

In their defense, feminist cunts aren't ladies.

Anonymous Daniel June 05, 2013 3:38 AM  

Dang if that ain't funny, VryeDenker. Well played. Either that or insomniacal laughter has just become a thing.

Anonymous Obvious June 05, 2013 3:47 AM  

What did Resnick and Malzberg do that was so bad, you ask? Well, at the beginning of the column in issue 200, he admits to have written — gasp — porn. And he sold it to a “lady” editor. He identifies female authors and editors as “lady” writer and “lady” editor.

That's not at all what people are pissed at Resnick and Malzberg for. That's a huge strawman. I figured you guys would at least be able to read.

Anonymous Daniel June 05, 2013 3:51 AM  

And when you use the term "strawman," I assume you mean "paraphrase?"

Inconceivable!

Blogger bethyada June 05, 2013 5:49 AM  

Okay, so only partially related:

Solo mum blocks male bonding session

A father-son bonding session planned by a North Island primary school was cancelled after a single mother demanded to be included.

Anonymous Davey Hogan's Revenge June 05, 2013 6:38 AM  

_slurp_

That's the sound of the prog drinking the last bit of the host's blood. They always kill the host, Vox.
SFWA will be a side note on Wikipedia in a few years.

Blogger Nate June 05, 2013 8:02 AM  

"That's not at all what people are pissed at Resnick and Malzberg for. That's a huge strawman. I figured you guys would at least be able to read."

And yet there it is... found directly quoted in the complaints.

Dumbass.

Anonymous Jill June 05, 2013 10:42 AM  

It's as I say, Ideologues Ruin Everything. I made a brave attempt at getting through the list above, but got dizzy about a third of the way through, about the time one person said they didn't want censorship, only respect. I think I just hate everybody.

Anonymous VD June 05, 2013 11:10 AM  

I made a brave attempt at getting through the list above, but got dizzy about a third of the way through, about the time one person said they didn't want censorship, only respect. I think I just hate everybody.

A misanthropic female libertarian. Sweet John Galt, is this the second coming of Ayn Rand?

Anonymous Jill June 05, 2013 11:19 AM  

But Ayn Rand wasn't.....oh, never mind.

Anonymous Obvious June 05, 2013 2:30 PM  

Nate,

Where is that "directly quoted"?

Blogger J. Gavin Landon June 12, 2013 8:00 PM  

"It's absolutely freaking hilarious"

Indeed D-)

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