Step Up Fantasy

Discussion Post

Hey friends how’s it going? I’m okay. This is being written before I move into college but by the time I move into college it should be posted and I’ll probably be panicking. A lot.

To start off I’ll tell y’all why I’m writing this post other than because I need to keep posting content on this blog.

The reason is fantasy sucks. A lot.

This was brought on by 1: me trying to read one of my ARCs and 2. The sixth episode of Game of Thrones, season 7.

With Game of Thrones, I know, it’s always been like this, but with each passing day I get more tightly wound.

The book I was reading was just… You know it isn’t even something that would probably be considered out of place but considering how I’m feeling (TM) right now? It was the last thing I needed.

Okay, so the thing about fantasy (and sci-fi, just know I usually mean both when I’m talking about one or the other) is that I usually use it to escape. I love fantasy world. I love the world-building and the magic and the characters and all of the creativity that can go into it. It’s all amazing, it’s why when I write I almost always write fantasy.

But lately? Fantasy has been getting more and more exhausting. It feels like every time I blink someone’s found that another fantasy and sci-fi book is racist, sexist, homophobic, ableist or more. Which is fine, I appreciate when people do that because I know I’m not likely to catch it myself and I appreciate that those people are giving me the means to guard myself against more shit like that. That they’re helping me reprogram my brain to know that stuff isn’t normal or natural.

Where I have the problems are, well, with the writers, to be honest. I mean, I don’t know much of any of the rest of the writing process and feel close to the authors so… Also when shit happens, it’s them who we look to respond to it.

Okay, I actually have another post on that so, moving on to them stepping up.

This is more of a rant but I want to know why, why, why, why people can’t seem to imagine their fantasy world without one of the -isms in it? And I get it sometimes things like that just make it because of how we’re programmed to think but really? At some point I feel like basic empathy should come into play, I mean do fantasy and sci-fi writers not have that?

I mean the number of fantasy books I’ve read where the guys will “leer” at the girls or make “crude” comments or sexual remarks or basically act like all the guys all women fear running into in real life? Honestly. In like every fantasy book. Is it really that hard to write not shitty dudes? I mean, y’all I get it. I hate guys. Seriously, despise them at like all costs but… When I write fantasy, it’s fantasy, it’s my world and, in my world, I don’t want dudes like that to exist. I’m aware they do exist, don’t get me wrong, they’re in there but not everywhere.

Why do fantasy writers constantly insist on stuffing our faces with shitty dude after shitty dude and then there’s like two not shitty dudes, one of which is probably the basic, brooding grumpus who makes me want to vomit and is really pretty close to the other shitty dudes.

Like, if you want your book to in some way mirror the real world so people aren’t becoming disillusioned maybe add some people of color because you know what else is annoying? Reading fantasy books with only white people. Oh, look there are the servants who are brown, that doesn’t count. If we actually look at real life population ratios and you want to mimic that then have like two white people.

Have multiple races with MULTIPLE CULTURES that’s another thing fantasy seems to fall short on. Culture. We have like four fleshed out cultures in the best and in the worst we have one. What is it with fantasy writers saying “They come from a different land” or something but they literally act exactly like everyone else, are you serious?

AND ABLEISM oh my gods. I would love there to be a real world where everyone had the same abilities as everyone else but GUYS. THAT ISN’T REALITY. And writing disabled people out of fantasy isn’t cool. Disabled people read to and I mean physical disabilities as well because it’s all fine and good to say they have a mental disability, and we need more MI rep but we also need physical disability rep? And it’s like in fantasy writer decide that writing a physically disabled person is way too much? Really? No one is blind or deaf, no one has a limp or is in a wheel chair or has down syndrome? Those things are common?

All and all, really, it’s just I do love fantasy but I’m tired of being asked to believe the most wild things but then I don’t see any of the life, I guess, I’d like to see in there. I’m tired of being asked to believe that some person has wings, or they fall in love after three days, or there are dragons and trolls but then you have no people of color, you have blatant sexism EVERYWHERE, you have no disabled people, no queer people, everyone is cis… I’m tired of being asked to sacrifice those things.

Even when I get one, it’s usually at the expense of something else too. Someone will give me people of color in their books but then it rains down on the sexism like I can’t have POC who don’t hate women?

Or here’s a queer person but we’re going to have them make as many ableist comments as possible.

That shouldn’t be happening.

I’m just tired of opening up fantasy books and seeing guys being sexist, seeing racist remarks about how characters think they’re ugly (because of their skin or some shit because apparently, POC can’t love their skin?), about how that disabled person is wearing them down because disability or it’s a burden, or ew two girls kissing (but not dudes, because that’s hot?).

I’m tired of all that happening but being asked to forgive because of beautiful world building or dragons or something.

No.

It’s FANTASY. I’m not saying write those things out of it, but if it’s going to be in there have characters dismantle it, have them denounce it. Stop just letting it slide because, what? That’s the world they live in? No, that’s the world we live in, this is the stuff we’re trying to stop and you’re just perpetuating it in your books because, why? I don’t know but it’s still there.

Seriously, fantasy (and sci-fi). Get your shit together. Tone down the blatant sexism every three pages just so you can have you hot, stud LI be the lovable good guy. STOP WITH THE WEIRD RACISM. IT ISN’T THAT SUBTLE. Stop with the blatant ableism, mental and physical, with the “she’s cr*zy” or implying that they’re disability is a burden do you think people don’t get enough of that in real life? Stop with the fetishizing of queer men and the disgust of queer women and forgetting that sexualities beyond gay, lesbian, bi, and pan exist and stop acting like bi and pan are the same thing. STOP WITH ALL THE CIS PEOPLE.

Just stop with bringing literally ALL of the real world’s shit into fantasy. It’s ruining what could be a perfectly good genre and I’m tired of it.

 

That’s all for today, check back later for more content and thanks for reading.

 

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