Yeah, the editor at Polychrome Ink said a bunch of crappy things about the romance genre and queer women writing about queer men. The one good thing to come out of it was that they gave author Heidi Belleau (teacupnosaucer in the link) a great opportunity to dismantle their sexist arguments with wit and verve. If anyone hasn’t read that discussion, we recommend it for Heidi’s contribution. Author E.E. Ottoman (asofterapocalypse) also chimed in with some very good points about the transphobia in this ongoing discussion here.
I have explained that I wasn’t saying queer women shouldn’t write about queer men. My objection was to silencing queer men, or any one else for that matter. I also apologized publicly. And I responded to E.E. Ottoman with thanks for the context and further explained my perspective and thoughts.
I understand I said some things that people took offense to. That was in no way my intention. And I am sorry. My issue was always about silencing people.
I am regretful that I said romance novels are porn for women. And not just because people objected to it. But because it wasn’t said the way I intended. I was frustrated seeing a queer woman silencing queer men. And I got ahead of myself. I see nothing wrong with pornography, I see nothing wrong with romance or erotica. I feel there is a pornography element to them. If I were to recant that, people would think I was doing so simply to preserve my name. I don’t wish to seem insincere, so I’m being honest. I read romance. I enjoy romance. This is how I see it. What I am sorry for and what I am recanting, is that I shouldn’t have brought gender/sex into it at all. Regardless of what I perceive the demographics to be, that was inappropriate and unintentionally transphobic. It will not happen again.
The only thing I can do is learn from my mistakes and try to do better. If people feel that isn’t good enough and still wish to avoid the publication I am trying to put out, I understand. People should stand by their values.
I made a mistake, I am sorry.
@teacupnosaucer: I have been following this entire conversation, and first I would like to say to you, the author who posted originally, and to anyone who is continuing this drama, shame on you. And I do say that with as much respect as I can muster. And it should be noted that by continuing this dialog past multiple apologies, you are continuing to involve yourself in it. So perhaps you should leave yourself out of it. Food for thought.
Resolutions will NEVER be found if we cannot work together as a community. Misunderstandings will happen, wrongs will be said, offence may be taken, but know when to end and apologize. All any person can do is apologize. Something that Polychrome Ink has done repeatedly, yet no apology has been uttered by anyone else for their part—and you do have a part—in the original misunderstanding.
You have turned your anger into harassment. What Polychrome Ink is doing is a benefit to our community and our representation. Explain to me how your continued slander against Polychrome Ink, in itself, could not be seen as an attempt to silence others.
Perhaps reading comprehension is something you lack. Read the mission statement of the website. Go through the staff list and read who the people involved are. Polychrome Ink are a part of the same community you are. They are a group of people on the wrong side of any argument simply because of who they are. You identify as a bisexual woman, therefore this should not be a foreign concept to you.
How is the continuation of this argument productive? An apology was given. The courteous thing to do would be to accept the acknowledgement of their part in the misunderstanding, and apologize in turn.
We as a community have so many obstacles to overcome. We are persecuted across the globe. We are denied basic human rights. We are killed because of who we love, or the colour of our skin. We are still fighting to be allowed to marry and adopt children. We wage daily battles against ignorance, racism, transphobia, and homophobia. Yet somehow, this issue about MM Romance seems to take precedence for you to the point of ridiculousness. Perspective is a good thing.
Hostility and immaturity reigned throughout this entire debacle. Blowing raspberries and hurling expletives is not a creative means to a solution. And I would think that we, who are educated and part of the literary community, could have done better than that.
How we represent ourselves as a community matters, believe it or not. How can we ask to be taken seriously and have our voice heard when we express ourselves so inarticulately?
Instead of a productive conversation, instead of understandings reached, and allies made, this entire situation has turned into a disrespectful attack on a group of people you know nothing about—who were not the source of your original upset—yet how quickly did your hostility turn toward them. This seems to be your new raison d’être—the harassment of other sexual and racial minorities on Polychrome Ink. Bravo! Well done. You are no better that anyone else slinging hate.
Why not put all of your “verve and wit” to better use. Why not try to articulate the issues you are facing in such a way as to inspire forward progression for your original grievance. Dialog can easily break down into argument if cool heads do no prevail. As educated adults, I would think we could at least try to keep that fact in the foreground when conversing with others. Infighting gets us nowhere.
Did it ever cross your mind that with a little context given, patience, and skillful communication, Polychrome Ink, and others like it, might have been an asset to you or other burgeoning MM Romance writers? Probably not. It’s much easier to blow raspberries, isn’t it?
Do you know what harassment is? Because it’s not blocking a person and ending a conversation after it stops being productive, which is what I did until this post showed up on my dash and attempted to drag me through the mud.
So idk what kinda point you’re trying to make here other than “you always have to accept an apology even if the other person continues the behaviour they ostensibly apologized for in the first place”.
Finally, please don’t imply that my career requires or is even well served by letting people like this repeatedly disrespect me and my work. I’m not hurting that hard for visibility, publicity, or readers that I have to brown nose every queer aligned tumblr account I come across. Polychrome ink and yourself are fully welcome to never give me a dollar of your money or another moment of your time. In fact, I invite you to do so by not replying to this post again. Thanks!
PS: here’s your apology, since you feel I owe one: “I’m sorry I made a post about my experiences as a queer woman and that polychrome ink misinterpreted it and derailed it in order to center the conversation on queer men (again). I’m sorry I reacted with anger when my integrity as a queer person and an artist was called into question and when my genre was blanket dismissed as no better than straight men’s lesbian porn. I’m sorry I didn’t sit by silently while they later accused me of ‘silencing’ queer men all because I made a post that didn’t put them first and forefront. I’m sorry they chose to reply to me in a public forum and that I then held them responsible for their words. I’m sorry you then felt the need to try and shame me for standing up for myself as a person and as an artist using a throwaway tumblr account after accusing ME of creating/causing/continuing drama.”
Now where’s your apology, since you are now a participant in this too?
What part of our community has escaped you this time around? I believe the use of that term would, or at least should, make it obvious that those who have participated in this conversation are LGBTQIA+ in one form or another. That being said, we all have had unpleasant experiences, we all have been put in a position to have to defend who we are or our rights. You do not hold the monopoly on strife and difficult experiences within our community. In fact, empathy and supporting one another goes a long way to creating change, yet you present yourself as if the wrongs against you are all that need be considered. That kind of myopic thinking is a hindrance to communication.
The word pornography seems to have greatly offended you. Might I, in all seriousness, ask why it offends you so? I have several female friends, both heterosexual and part of our LGBTQIA+ community, who openly embrace their enjoyment of MM Romance as a tame form of pornography. My heterosexual female friends think that the idea of two males having sexual relations is stimulating. Publishers are well aware of the market they have for MM Romance among heterosexual women. Why is there need to deny this element and audience demographic? Pornography has been around for centuries. It has varying levels of quality—from the base to the artistic. It serves a purpose and it fills a demand. I see nothing wrong in the least with pornography or erotica. Perhaps if you could elaborate on why you feel this to be so offensive, I might better understand your point of view.
From my point of view—and I stress my point of view—I am not certain your integrity was being called into question, nor your work dismissed. Obviously you feel differently, and I would assume it was the pornography statement that made you feel this way—this would be your point of view, which you have every right to. However, consider for a moment that no offence was intended toward you—which I believe was said, but we will just use it as a hypothetical for now—might it be possible that different people with different experiences, different ways of thinking, different life styles even—and for argument sake, let us throw in a different interpretation of the original statement sans context—might it be possible that there are actually multiple ways of looking at the situation making neither point of view essentially wrong, merely different. This is one possibility, and where there are possibilities, there is no definite. It is a matter of interpretation. And if you wish others to hear and respect your point of view, would it not be prudent to extend the same courtesy to others? Social etiquette goes a long way during heated conversations. It avoids nastiness and generally gets the point across much better.
If memory serves, I believe it was stated repeatedly that the individual at Polychrome Ink reads Romance, and knows several Romance authors. And this is why I feel quick tempers and meeting any other opinion, or point of view, with hostility, was detrimental during this conversation. Communication simply broke down, to a most unfortunate and unproductive level. You are quick to attack, just as you tried—and failed, might I add—to find some way to attack me for my opinion and contribution to the conversation. Such hostility is counterproductive. I do, however, appreciate, you curtailing your use of profanity while addressing me. Sincerely, thank you.
My blog is not a “throwaway” account, whatever that might be. I created it a bit ago, and have since decided to rework its contents being uncertain of its direction. I am a busy person, and it is a project that has taken a back seat to more pressing life demands. It is most unnecessary to try to find a way to undermine me and invalidate my opinion. A new directionless blog does not a good insult make. And I am quite immune to such types of slights. A for effort though!
This issue is not very important to me considering I have much larger daily struggles as a member of the LGBTQIA+ community than who is writing gay sex and for what purpose. I was pointing out that Polychrome Ink has apologized. Others are continuing to quote Polychrome Ink out of context, and drag that project through the mud as a result of this conversation—others who have followed your example—others who have continued to regurgitate the entire fiasco via Asks to other blogs—tumblr is so full of sheep. I simply feel it needs to end on as amicable a note as possible—that would be where the apologies come in. Once that is done, perhaps the original issue can be the focus once more, and a productive dialog had that moves toward solutions. You seem content to dig your heels in and focus on this petty argument, instead of getting to the heart of your original grievance and look for productive solutions to it.
And your powers of observation are indeed lacking if you are implying that I and the woman at Polychrome Ink are the same person. That is rather paranoid, or do you often think that anyone with a different opinion than your own is the same person? Again, good try, but no. I am merely someone who disagrees with the course this conversation has taken. Now, replying on Anonymous might have been a cause for suspicion. But I did not do that for I saw no need to. And yes, I used your blog name in my post because I was addressing you. That is called a mention. It serves the purpose of letting an individual blog holder know that they have been addressed. It’s quite clever.
And lastly, there are several things which you claim that I implied, which I, in fact, did not. Since this is a frequent occurrence when conversing with you, I would assume you miss the point often. I am quite capable of expressing my thoughts in a cohesive and articulate manner—as perhaps you have noticed. If I had intended to say or imply that, “your career requires or is even well served by letting people like this repeatedly disrespect me and my work.” I would have said that. I said no such thing. I was speaking to the need for our community to work together and support each other. That Polychrome Ink, and many others like it, are what we as a community need more of—places to be represented, places where our voice can be heard, and our imprint on society made. Not all LGBTQIA+ writers will be as fortunate as you have been, able to find an audience and a publisher, but that does not negate their talent or desire to make their stories count. I applaud endeavours such as Polychrome Ink for supporting our community.
People are flawed and fallible, that is simply part of the human condition. But learning from our mistakes, knowing when to admit when we are wrong, and trying to rise above the multitude of obstacles that stand in our way with a degree of integrity intact, is what our community should strive for. I have high standards, but I think we can do it, and certainly always do better.
You can respond to me if you wish, or you can refrain. That is entirely your choice, and I respect which ever you choose. If you choose to respond, I will gladly read what you have to say, and do my best to understand your stance on things. If you choose to refrain, I sincerely wish you all the best in your future endeavours.
just reblogging (with lots of helpful bolding) so you all can see how condescending this sad little sockpuppet is. the fact that they chose to finish all this off with “I will do my best to understand your stance on things” after repeatedly minimizing and dismissing—not to mention outright fucking gaslighting—my interpretation/explanation of events is my favourite part. i could literally go point for point refuting every shit-dripping letter of this post, but nah.
i will say that if this isn’t, in fact, a sockpuppet for polychrome-ink (which is a possibility YOU brought up, not me, just for those keeping score at home) and is actually some clueless mansplaining bystander as they claim to be, I would really suggest polychrome-ink come fucking collect them because having an account that is in essence an anon come to their defense against a person who has blocked them and tried to disengage from this argument looks really, really fucking bad. I have people coming to my defense too, but they have actual accounts with actual names and actual online identities attached to them. this on the other hand is literally no better and no less suspicious than sending me anon hate. so, you know, get this trash out of my fucking notes and my mentions and off my dash.
ps: continues raspberrying far into the distance with both middle fingers extended