Fic: No Pride in Exclusionism

This month’s theme is ‘gatekeeping’. Today’s piece looks at gatekeeping within the LGBTQ+ community.

access black and white blur cage
Photo by Pixabay on

“You’re home early,” Roger said. Mae sat heavily on the sofa next to him, kicking off her heels. She leaned over to kiss his cheek and then leaned back, staring at the ceiling.

Roger muted the tv. “You okay?”

“I dropped out of the planning committee.”


Continue reading Fic: No Pride in Exclusionism

fic snippet: Distinctions

For this week’s #writingwednesday and in honour of Pride Month, a snippet from fantasy drama wip: Juliet where the protagonist’s daughter, Sophia, and the antagonist’s daughter, Iona, bond on their sea voyage and discuss the ways their two cultures approach sexuality.

two woman kissing each other
Photo by on

Aron took a coin from his pocket and flipped into the waves below. “For the sea gods. May they keep my kjaereste safe, back home.” He reached into his pocket and produced two more tiny copper discs, insisting the women take them. He placed a hand on his shoulder, inclined his head, and walked away.
Sophia held the coin tightly in her hand, thinking of her mother, of Sean, of her friends Evjor and Jeanne, of her cellmate, Valarie. She tossed the coin into the ocean, praying they stayed safe.
Iona rubbed at the copper. “I have no family I want to wish for. So instead I will pray the gods watch over those my mother has wronged.” Her coin too went into the waves. She stared after it for a while and then shivered.
“Let’s go back below,” Sophia said, putting one hand on Iona’s arm. As they walked she said, “What does it mean? Aron’s…sh— sha…”
Kjaereste? It’s your beloved. Your darling. Your boyfriend or girlfriend.”
Sophia attempted the pronunciation a few times until Iona laughed and said she’d got it perfect. “It’s a nice word,” Sophia said, glowing with pride. It was nicer that Iona’s people were so open about relationships beyond a man and his obedient wife.
They went to Iona’s cabin and Iona sat on the bed, Sophia taking the chair.
“You speak the language fluently.”
Iona nodded. “My father thought it important for me to learn about my heritage. I can see how it’s difficult though, if you try to learn it as an adult.”
Sophia leaned back in the chair. “I’d like to try and learn a few words.”
“Here’s one you are probably already familiar with. Elskeravkvinner. A woman who loves women.” Iona gave a sly smile.
Sophia knew they’d become close, but they’d never discussed what she was now sure was a mutual attraction. “I’m not El— Es…I will learn to pronounce it correctly, I promise, but that’s not me. Not entirely.”
Iona, who’d become despondent at the declaration tipped her head. “What do you mean?”
“I am a woman who loves men and women. I’ve dated young men. I still find men attractive. I like to look at women but I’ve never found one I felt…desire for. Until now.” She lowered her gaze. “Anyway, I don’t know what I am, what the word is. Or the word for those like Sean, who desire no-one.”
Iona patted the bed. “Come and sit with me. I don’t know those words either. Maybe we need new words. Or maybe we don’t need to make distinctions.”
Sophia sat next to Iona and Iona leaned her head on Sophia’s shoulder. “There are distinctions. Men, women, princess, peasant. They matter.”
Iona put one hand on Sophia’s knee. “Not so much as you think.” She kissed Sophia’s cheek. Sophia turned her head. Iona gave her an encouraging look and Sophia leaned in. Their lips met.

Asexual Awareness Week 2018

It’s Asexual Awareness Week. I’m not creating anything this year but I have tags for my previous asexual awareness week posts at my other journal, and a tag for all posts including meta and fiction looking at asexuality, theme: asexuality spectrum. 
I have some of those also posted as at WordPress tagged sexuality: asexuality.

There’s been pushback against asexuality in some places. Some tumblr posts insist that asexuals aren’t “oppressed enough” to be consider part of the LGBT+ community (those posts insist “queer is a slur” too despite significant commentary to the contrary on how important the reclaiming and use of the term is for many.)
There are posts accusing people of “sexualising” children by saying that we should acknowledge more than just heterosexual romantic and sexual attraction. That telling someone you’re asexual is “unneccessary” and exposing them to “information about your sex life”.
Posts saying asexuals just need hormones or counselling or to be raped.
Posts saying that asexual posts confuse people and prevent them from being gay because of “internalised homophobia”.

Most of those things have been, and in some cases, still are used as fodder against other queer groups.
“Trans people aren’t allowed in gay spaces because a transman with a woman is heterosexual”
“Bihets aren’t allowed in gay spaces!” (ie a bi/pansexual person in a relationship with someone of the opposite gender. The term bihet erases bisexuality by making same sex relationships gay, opposite sex relationships straight, and ignores trans people and nonbinary identities)
“Don’t mention lebsians or women won’t get married as they should.”
“Stop mentioning you’re gay, you’re throwing your sexuality in my face!” (As they wear a wedding ring and have a photo of their wife on their desk, secure in displays of heterosexuality)
“You’re not a gay man or a transwomen, you just need more testosterone and to pray harder to be the straight man you should be.”
“She won’t be a lesbian after I’ve f*cked her”

There’s been some interesting discussion about the Russian bots that infiltrated Tumblr and the rise of dissent amongst queer groups; “gold star lesbian” rhetoric, posts that are anti-bisexual and anti-asexual, a rise in TERF posts centering womanhood on menstruation and reproduction. It’s awful and it’s unacceptable.

If you don’t know anything about asexuality there’s a primer here and a lot of other links in this Asexual Awareness Week 2017 post.

Thanks for reading.


On Asexual Characters – as an asexual, I should write them more


Sometimes I think we write to explore the things most important to us. Sometimes however we write to explore other ways of being.


I’ve been posting fiction three times a month to the blog for a while now, 7th, 14th, 21st of the month; I’ve found Wednesdays works best so I’ve switched to the first – third Wednesday of each month for the moment.

I would like to use the fourth week to share something else – moodboards, reviews, prompts, or other non-fiction.

This time I’d like to talk a bit about asexuality. I’ve blogged about it before, and have written meta about characters I headcanon as potentially being on the asexual spectrum.

Things have been personally stressful lately and for an asexual, though it isn’t personal, sometimes it feels very personal to constantly face messages from the media, social networks, friends, or family that posit (1) sex is essential for a relationship and/or (2) relationships without sex as are not as important.

That is, the messages that call an allosexual being in a monogamous relationship with an asexual abusive, because the asexual person is “withholding” sex from someone who enjoys it. The messages that place a spouse on the top of some sort of relationship hierarchy. The constant message that sex is good and all people must want – or need, or deserve – it.

So much for asexuals and those people who cannot have sex for whatever reason.

As such, I’ve been thinking about changing attitudes via fiction and writing about asexuality.

Continue reading On Asexual Characters – as an asexual, I should write them more

Asexual Awareness Week 2017


Asexual Awareness Week runs from 22 October to 28 October this year.
Here are some useful links.

Asexual Awareness Week

Asexuality 101
What is Asexuality?
Asexuality: a brief introduction includes a link to a downloadable pdf
Am I Asexual? 10 Things You [probably] Don’t (But Should) Know About Asexuality, Because It’s Not All About Sex
How to Tell If You Are Asexual

Asexuality Is a Sexual Orientation, Not a Sexual Dysfunction
There’s Nothing Wrong With Being Asexual
Here are the 11 biggest asexual myths busted

Asexuality and Romantic Orientation for example someone can identify as a biromantic asexual
3 People Get Real About What It Means to Be Aromantic
Biromantic, Heteromantic, Homoromantic & Panromantic

10 Things You Should Never Say To Someone Who’s Asexual
8 Things You Should Never Say to an Asexual Person
Things you should never say to an asexual person
Sex is Not a Vitamin

Key points:
Asexuality is a spectrum
Asexuality is not celibacy
Asexuality is an orientation and not a disease
Asexuality does not predict romantic orientation

Meta: Reading Girolamo Riario (Da Vinci’s Demons) as on the Asexual Spectrum

I head-canon Da Vinci’s Demons’ Giralomo Riario as somewhere on the asexual spectrum. Not necessarily completely asexual but possibly grey-asexual or demi-sexual, maybe with some sexual attraction to all genders; I also think he could be biromantic and/or demiromantic.

Continue reading Meta: Reading Girolamo Riario (Da Vinci’s Demons) as on the Asexual Spectrum

Fiction: A Matter of Perspective

Title: A Matter of Perspective
Word Count: 795
Summary: An imposter king comforts a woman, kin to the man he is betrothed to. She explains she is not the “harlot” some call her. In fact to lie with a man will rob her of her gift – or curse, as others name it. That does not mean she is deprived of worldly pleasures, not even “release”.
Content Notes: No standard warnings apply. No sexual content but contains discussions around sex, virginity, masturbation, and same gender relationships.
Author Notes: A second original fiction piece that uses MMoM and my solo bingo card (prompt “I only make love to myself”) for inspiration. This short piece takes place in a fantasy world I am hoping to write more about in the future. I’m still working out many of the details but I hope this snippet is intriguing.
Originally posted to my fiction blog

image base from morguefile contributor

He sat down next to her on the stone steps. She had her cloak wrapped tightly around her against the chill of the evening air and he wished he’d worn a shirt that had longer sleeves.

“Are you all right?”


He gazed out across the estate. Was that the word? Estate, or was it grounds? His kingdom anyway, except it was all a lie. A lie the others thought necessary, but a lie nonetheless.

“Would you like to me have him, er, whipped?” He wasn’t sure about the laws of this kingdom, what punishment would be suitable or allowable.

She shook her head.

He hated to see her so quiet, so withdrawn. He wondered if he ought not to find his betrothed and let him deal with his family. Yet somehow he thought she was his responsibility too. She was going to be his family. Would that be a lie too, if the wedding was real but one of the grooms was an imposter? Surely it wouldn’t come to that. This charade must end before then.

“Talk to me,” he said. “Please.”

She glanced over at him, then back out over the grass and trees. The first star of the evening twinkled above them.

“I know what people say about me. I’ve heard worse than what he said. But it’s not true. I like to have fun. I like to drink and dance and, and, to kiss, to hug. I let people touch me sometimes, a little more than I should perhaps. But I do not lie with them.” She sighed. “You may not believe me. But I have not lain with a man.”

He remained silent a moment. “Never?”


“Oh.” How terrible.

She shook her head. “Do not sound so sad. I do not forgo pleasure. Did I not just tell you I have fun? Including the – what do you call it? We call it the release. When you make love until there is a rush of pleasure.”

“Little death,” he recalled, with some distaste.


He nodded fervently at her disapproving tone. “I agree.”

That drew a smile. “I make love only to myself,” she said. “Partly because I have never met a man I truly want to bed, and partly because if I do, I will lose my gift. My curse. Many with this gift lose their virginity early, desperate to be rid of the power. They would rather be loved than feared.”

“Not you?”

She shook her head. “Curse, gift; they’re just perspectives. It is power and it is mine. And any man who would have me powerless rather than powerful is not worthy of my body or my mind.”

He nodded, thoughtful. He had dishonoured her, underestimated her as people had always underestimated him, until he took on the identity of a king.

“So you’ve had release?”

This line of questioning raised her eyebrows. “Indeed.”

“So it isn’t the release that takes your gift?” He’d never met a law or a spell that didn’t have a loophole.


“Only a penis.”

She laughed. “You are more direct than any noble I have ever met. Yes, your highness, so far as I have been told, it is the act between a man and a woman.”

“So his penis is the destroyer of magic.”

This time she laughed until she choked. Patting at her chest, she wheezed, “I have never heard it put quite like that.”

“But what about if he uses his fingers? What about a – what are they called? Wooden things, marble if you afford it – and no chance of splinters, shaped like a penis.”

She stared at him. “I cannot say I’ve ever tried such a thing.”

He shrugged. “It’s something to think about.”

She put one hand on his knee. “Can I tell you something secret?”

“Of course.”

“I am not much concerned with a penis, neither flesh nor marble.”

He nodded. “I guessed a while ago that you prefer women.”

She flushed, bobbed her head in acknowledgement.

“But why is it not acceptable for a woman to love a woman in your kingdom? You don’t care when a man loves another man.”

She rolled her eyes. “Because women are vile creatures that need to be tamed by a man. Imagine if women could love other women. Who knows what we might get up to!”

He snorted. “What a lot of horseshit.”

“Yes, highness,” she said, and the inflection on the title he had no claim to suggested she was becoming suspicious. “Thank you for saying so.”

He got to his feet, held out his hand. “My buttocks are frozen. I’m going inside for a warm drink. Would you like to join me?”

She took his hand, let him help her up. “I’d love to.”

The Myth of the Relationship Hierarchy Strikes Again


I was reading an interesting story recently. It happened to be fanfiction, but I’ve had this experience with plenty of mainstream novels. I was enjoying the storyline, the plot was good, the author was hitting some of my favourite tropes and the story was, overall, well-told.

Then: bam. The relationship hierarchy* reared its ugly head.

Continue reading The Myth of the Relationship Hierarchy Strikes Again

Sex is Not Vital For a Loving Relationship

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Sex is Not Vital For a Loving Relationship (No matter what real or fictional therapists tell you)
This supposed professional just denied the existence of asexuality. She erased the right of not just asexuals, but people with physical disabilities which preclude sex, to be in a “loving relationship”. She basically implied that survivors of sexual trauma need to have/resume having sex or they cannot be loved.

Continue reading Sex is Not Vital For a Loving Relationship

Asexual Erasure & Insults

Rarely does a week go by without my seeing an article that talks about sex, and how someone is not happy they are not getting enough of it. Regardless of the tone of the article however, there is the horror of the comment section.
There’ll be some sensible comments.
There’ll also be hordes of apparently sex-mad commentators who are keen to insist that there is no pleasure compared to that of using someone else’s body to gratify your needs. That someone who isn’t being fucked isn’t worthy of existing, let alone being in a relationship.
If someone isn’t having sex with you? Dump them. You’ve been together five years? Still dump them. You really love them and you’ve got a child together? Dump them anyway.
This week it’s this article, in the Guardian:

Continue reading Asexual Erasure & Insults