Reader Sexism and its Fallout
I just read this post written by a wonderful author, A. E. Radley.
She points out the sexism and exclusion that continues to exist in the LGBTQ community. People scream that they don't like labels, yell to the masses that 'they are who they are', yet love putting our own community members into uncomfortable little boxes. Not only that, if someone attempts to pull a gender, sex, sexuality out of that box, they are shamed, berated, and judged.
This blog post by A.E. Radley really made me think about one of my top pet peeves. I love to write, I love to read. But what I don't love seeing is the abundance of sexist comments towards men on the lesbian fiction oriented sites. The rampant exclusion and judgment of male authors who dare to write lesbian fiction, or even the men who enjoy reading it...sickens me. The same goes for bisexuals writing lesfic, or transgender people writing lesfic. As an author, you can write outside your gender, identity, race, religion, sexuality, and that doesn't make your story less valid or less engaging. Quality fiction is not determined by anything other than a writer's skill, and I want this ignorant intolerance to stop, I want to fight it. But the few who perpetrate it are vocal and loud, and others jump on the band wagon called "Exclusion" without realizing the consequences of their sexist mob-mentality actions.
This is an issue that truly makes me angry. You can be just as sexist on the female side as you are on the male side. And it has just as harmful of consequences to the community and our LGBTQ members. A good author is a good author. If you don’t want to read lesbian fiction written by a man because you want to support female business and such, great! Then say that. But when women try to say that men can’t write lesfic because they couldn’t possibly write women’s intimacy properly…I’m going to call bull. Great authors can write any viewpoint, any gender, any history. Fifty years ago women wrote sci-fi under men’s names, because they wouldn’t have been taken serious otherwise. I’d like to think we are further along than that.
Women write gay romance all the time, and are very successful at it. Would these same “men can’t write lesfic” women decry anyone who tried to say women can’t write gay romance? Listen, I don’t have to grow a penis to write about a male main character any more than I have to grow antenna to write about aliens. How about we stop being fiction bigots? The sex and/or sexuality of an author has nothing to do with the quality or content of their fiction! How about we judge a book by it’s story quality and content and not the content of the author’s pants? That would really be great.