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Sunday, 30 August 2015

The Man in the Mirror nsfw

The Man in the Mirror

By
Alexander Gordon Jahans

A lot of amazing things have happened lately. 

Obviously, chiefly, my podquisition fanfic Laura Queen of the Earth is unarguably fantastic success as there are now nearly as views on it as there are likes on my fanpage. Nearly seven hundred views on a long bit of scifi pulp fan fiction. Amazing and Laura K Buzz herself read it, that is unbelievably awesome and I think months and years could go by before I stop internally squeeing about that.  

I also found myself looking in the mirror and liking how I looked unironically, I am now good looking enough that I with my high standards when it comes to men would find me attractive. I am growing a moustache and my voice is deepening gloriously. I'm even losing my sense of shame regarding my breasts or they're shrinking or something because I actually don't mind not wearing my shirt now.

My dad has even started to understand that the situation is complicated and he can't just motivate me to get a job because fundamentally getting a job is not just a matter of motivation and he's given me some money towards not starving which is nice.

There is a catch though, a catch that doesn't diminish how awesome these things are but does give me pause for thought. At long last I feel like I am becoming a man and that personally is awesome but as a writer is just awful. I talked about this a little on facebook and someone got the wrong end of the stick so I had to delete it but basically that massively successful fanfic could have been better had I had better porn and thus not found myself inclined to write a needless scene of fetishistic titillation. 

Don't get me wrong it doesn't ruin the story as the entire thing is basically about sylphs and how desperate times make those in power, even if they are brilliant people, corrupt and decadent. In many ways the sylphs are an excellent metaphor for the corruption power brings as at first you turn to exploitation out of necessity and then it's just convenient and useful and enjoyable. So I'm not saying fetishistic titillation in that story is bad but that instead of writing an epic final confrontation I decided to retread old ground because I felt horny and here was an excuse for a pretty woman to get naked.

This is not going to be the blog where I talk about porn, I need to do way more research before I write a blog post about that but this is going to be about why the lack of porn is a problem. Why being a man and a writer is a problem.

I write like I make videos, because I like to. Which means Author Appeal is basically an enforced trope. I like sharks, I like exposition, I like feminism, I like badass lines, I like cute flirting, I like sylphs, I like the metaphysics of the multiverse, I like the moral greyness, I like the fight scenes and the character relationships and overlapping plots and subtext, I like pedants as the ultimate evil and I like the concept and role of the Farsh-nuke.

There was a time when I blamed the execution on the ideas. The Farsh-nuke is a sexist idea so I shall stop writing him. etc... The problem is that the ideas aren't to blame, I am. I mean the Farsh-nuke is technically a genderless sentient proto universe who identifies as a man living in the same body as well frequently a man though it could be anything and even when it is a man there's the Unleasher to add an interesting layer of complexity. I mean there could be a story to be told where the Farsh-nuke is in the body of a transwoman and becoming the Unleasher is the Farsh-nuke coming out as genderless and agreeing with whatever their host is more comfortable with. There is so much genuinely interesting stuff there and even with the classic William Dickson Wright model it can be done well... If you are not a crap writer.

You see I write like I make videos, with no editing. And that is a problem when you get distracted by the sexy.

This is more than just inadvertant sex scenes though. In my desire to get better at writing women I have neglected the need to be a better man. 

It seems almost ridiculous to criticize myself for not being a good enough man because I am a moral minded left wing nerd but when it comes to women, though I have always pretty much acted like gender was never a factor, I am a shit. 

My approach to men is a nuanced and complex thing, they have to look nice but like they don't care about how they look, they have to be moral, charismatic, funny, fair, leftwing, feminists and kind to pets and appreciative of badass cool things and then I have this kind of soft crush that is just like "I would follow you anywhere because you are awesome. If you wanted to put a collar on me and keep me as your pet I would be utterly fine with that because you are awesome." 

My approach to women is very William Dickson Wright "You are hot so I want to explore every facet of your body and I would like to cuddle you and shower you with gifts and maybe put a collar on you because I want you to be mine." That is NOT good. I never actually say any of that or act on any of that because in reality I don't wanna be a creep and instead I am a techno hermit who petty much only asks people out when I know it is impossible so I don't have to actually risk them saying yes but I need to fix this, I need to make myself into the kind of man I would be happy to see in fiction with a woman and therein lies the rub.

This is the aspect of feminism I have neglected, how men who love and fuck women can exist in feminist or pseudofeminist stories without being the sexist badguys or part of the patriarchal establishment that needs to be overthrown. Indeed this is an issue that is pertinent to the modern world, the patriarchy is crumbling and what is a straight man or bisexual man supposed to do when their privilege is gone? Can we continue watching James Bond and the Doctor and Arthur and Robin Hood or does the death of patriarchy and privilege mean a death and dismantling of patriarchal icons?

A lot of feminists are rightly sick of the amount of male heroes and rightly fucking so but for me one type of male hero is missing, the post-patriarchal male hero. The Farsh-nuke could be that hero but I don't think William Dickson Wright can be. To be honest I think the letsplayers I watch are probably better rolemodels than any fiction industry has produced and god help me I need rolemodels.

Anyway I shall exorcise the man in the mirror because I will adapt the tv scripts for Green Eyed Nothing with William Dickson Wright into a series of short stories and if Laura Queen of the Earth seemed gratuitous Green Eyed Nothing is full on anvilliciously exploitative. If there aren't massive screeds about how it is vile scum and I am vile scum for writing it then clearly I am not big enough to be noticed.