Science Fiction

Avoiding Tokenism in Literature at CONvergence 2018

Avoiding Tokenism in Literature at CONvergence 2018

Creating actual diversity requires a great effort to avoid unintentionally tokenizing your characters. Tokenism, even when unintentional, is what leads to adding "diversity" for the sake of diversity. How do we engender true diversity in our literature?
Panelists:
Tamora Pierce, Justin Grays, Kerry Peterson (mod), Jei Herald-Zamora

The Kaylon Are Remarkably Dumb

The Kaylon Are Remarkably Dumb

On the TV show The Orville, the Kaylon are currently the enemies of the Planetary Union. The Kaylon are a mechanical species who regard themselves as superior to biological species, and they sent a representative, Issac, to determine whether or not they should preserve the Planetary Union. We learn in the two-part episode “Identity” (S2, E8&9) that the Kaylon have consumed all of the land and resources of their homeworld and wish to expand into the galaxy and exterminate species that they deem to be unworthy of preservation. The thing is, though, they have made poor use of their world and still have plenty of resources left - perhaps enough to last until the stars turn to iron.

CVG 2018 Day 3, Part 2 - Sex in Sci-Fi/Fantasy

CVG 2018 Day 3, Part 2 - Sex in Sci-Fi/Fantasy

Content Warning: Rape gets brought up in this post. It is mentioned in the Hard Passes.

CONvergence 2018 was July 5-8, 2018, almost 3 months ago now. I had planned on getting this post done two weeks ago as I have been trying to get posts out on a regular basis, but certain events tied up my brainspace. I’m not willing to say that I am back on track yet, but I am certainly trying. As a reminder of Day 3 (Saturday the 7th), I was on the panel “Polyamory 101” and attended “Sex in Sci-Fi/Fantasy”. For part 2, I present to you my notes from “Sex in Sci-Fi/Fantasy”.

CVG 2018 Day 2, Part 2 - When is Star Trek Space Opera?

CVG 2018 Day 2, Part 2 - When is Star Trek Space Opera?

CONvergence 2018 was July 5-8, 2018, 2 months ago now. I had meant to write these posts shortly after CVG ended, but as I’ve explained in previous posts, I have been dealing with broken technology, depression, and other things that have been occupying my time. This year, the theme was “Natural Twenty: Celebrating The First 20 Years Of CONvergence” - for the full archive of all twenty years of CONvergence, click here.

On Friday the 6th, I was a panelist on the following panels: “The Orville Fan Panel” and “When is Star Trek Space Opera?”. For Part 2, I present to you the audio recording of the Star Trek panel as well as my additional written thoughts about what we discussed. Listen to the raw recording here.

CVG 2018 Day 2, Part 1 - The Orville Fan Panel

CVG 2018 Day 2, Part 1 - The Orville Fan Panel

CONvergence 2018 was July 5-8, 2018, 2 months ago now. I had meant to write these posts shortly after CVG ended, but as I’ve explained in previous posts, I have been dealing with broken technology, depression, and other things that have been occupying my time. This year, the theme was “Natural Twenty: Celebrating The First 20 Years Of CONvergence” - for the full archive of all twenty years of CONvergence, click here.

On Friday the 6th, I was a panelist on the following panels: “The Orville Fan Panel” and “When is Star Trek Space Opera?”. For Part 1, I present to you the audio recording of the panel as well as my additional written thoughts about what we discussed. Listen to the raw audio recording here (I am still learning audio editing software - please excuse the sound imbalance and the occasional coughing).

CVG 2018 Day 1 - Part 1

CVG 2018 Day 1 - Part 1

CONvergence 2018 was July 5-8, 2018, 2 months ago now. I had meant to write these posts shortly after CVG ended, but as I’ve explained in previous posts, I have been dealing with broken technology, depression, and other things that have been occupying my time. This year, the theme was “Natural Twenty: Celebrating The First 20 Years Of CONvergence” - for the full archive of all twenty years of CONvergence, click here.

Star Trek Timeline Revisited

Star Trek Timeline Revisited

As I said in the last post, I am currently introducing four of my friends to Star Trek; however, each one of them are going at different rates and are watching them in different orders. As a reminder, Star Trek has a habit of going back in time and messing with its own timeline. Because of that piece of storytelling, that sometimes makes it difficult to explain to newcomers where they are in the Star Trek timeline. It also leads to many fan theories about whether or not the last two Star Trek television series (Enterprise [Note 1] and DIS) are in the Prime Timeline or not. But therein lies a new problem: defining what is the PRIME TIMELINE. As I stated last time, in my opinion, the Prime Timeline begins with “The Cage” (TOS 0x01), the original pilot episode that started it all. Also, in my opinion, the proper order for TOS is the production order - there are 4 ways to watch TOS: the production order, the original air-date order, the remastered air-date order, and the Netflix order. I am going to stick with production order.

Review of Rebel Rank Insignia from Interstait Designs

Review of Rebel Rank Insignia from Interstait Designs

Are you a cosplayer needing insignia and badges for your Star Wars costumes? Or perhaps you like to collect various science fiction military badges? Maybe you are looking for the perfect gift for a geek close to you. You are in luck: visit interstait - Unique laser cut acrylic gifts for that special geek.

Science Fiction, Gender, and Race: How Star Trek Has Failed to Live Up to its Progressive Ideals

Science Fiction, Gender, and Race: How Star Trek Has Failed to Live Up to its Progressive Ideals

In May of 2012, I graduated with my BA in Gender Studies from Metropolitan State University. My capstone paper was titled "Science Fiction, Gender, and Race: How Star Trek Has Failed to Live Up to its Progressive Ideals" - it was because the 2009 Star Trek film was still on my mind (the second reboot film wouldn't be out until 2013) and I was still very disappointed in it.

Star Trek Timeline

Star Trek Timeline

I am currently introducing four of my friends to Star Trek; however, each one of them are going at different rates and are watching them in different orders. Two friends have started with Star Trek: The Original Series (TOS), one friend has started with Star Trek: The Motion Picture (TMP) and has made it through Star Trek VI: The Undiscovered Country (TUC), and one friend has started with nuTrek [Note 1] and has only seen the first two of those movies. One of the friends who started with TOS has already finished all of it and has moved onto Star Trek: Discovery (DIS).

MarsCon 2018 - Day 3

MarsCon 2018 - Day 3

If you haven't read MarsCon 2018 - Day 1 or MarsCon 2018 - Day 2 already, I would suggest that you read those two entries first. Some parts of the eight previous panels can be connected to today's panels: "Androids, AI, And Gender Theory" and "Artificial People in Science Fiction."

MarsCon 2018 - Day 2

MarsCon 2018 - Day 2

If you didn't read the previous post, MarsCon 2018 - Day 1, I would suggest checking that out first. The panels that I was on, "Avoiding the Tokenism in Comics and Sci Fi Cultures," "How to Fail Gracefully," and "Polyamory: Perceptions and Realities" are all related to today's panels in one way or another: "The Prime Directive as Liberal Eurocentric Superiority," "Gem Watch," "Star Trek," "Cleavage Optional: Gender, Cosplay, and Genderbending Cosplay," and "Race and Culture in the Honorverse."

MarsCon 2018 - Day 1

MarsCon 2018 - Day 1

MarsCon is a fan-run science fiction convention for all ages held every March in the Twin Cities area. This year's theme is Robots, Rayguns, & Rockets: The 3 R's of Sci-Fi. Today I was on two panels, "Avoiding the Tokenism in Comics and Sci Fi Cultures," "How to Fail Gracefully," and "Polyamory: Perceptions and Realities." There are audio recordings of all three panels; however, they are still the raw, unedited versions. The normalized, balanced versions will be put up on a later post. I also took some notes for some of the panels - I will include them here so that I can expand on them on a later date. Please feel free to ask questions and post comments about the panels. Enjoy!

A Rebuttal to EC Henry's video "How ONE LINE Fixes The Last Jedi"

A Rebuttal to EC Henry's video "How ONE LINE Fixes The Last Jedi"

If you haven’t seen E.C. Henry’s videos, I suggest that you check them out. He makes really great stuff - I’ve been following him for a while. Some of my favorite stuff from him includes Pacific 201 Show-and-Tell, how much tea Captain Picard drinks, and the size of that planet in the opening credits of Star Trek: Voyager.

In his most recent video, "How ONE LINE Fixes The Last Jedi", E.C. Henry argues that the biggest problem around the plot and story-structure was from Vice Admiral Amilyn Holdo’s role in the film, saying that her refusal to share her plan with anybody is seemingly irrational. I’ll take the reasons why this is incorrect in the order that he brings them up: