Saturday, December 22, 2007

Create a superheroine?

According to Shadowline editor, Kristen Simon, “I’d been hoping to see a super-hero book with a strong female lead to act as a counter-point to our popular Bomb Queen series, but none were forthcoming. So I decided to come up with a contest to create a super-heroine for the 21st Century.”

As with any writing job, I see two downsides to submitting: 1) They could reject my idea. 2) They could accept my idea and let everyone know how stupid it is.

The upside is that whatever I can come up with will NOT be the dumbest thing on the pile.

(And that if it is, only I and the Shadowline editor will see it.)

Of course they're playing cute for the Cluemaster's daughter.

Well, Didio's little hint just tosses another clue on the pile. Apparently Stephanie Brown is coming back to life and the reason is obvious:

DC will do anything to avoid redesigning the Batcave.

Who wants to push for a Batcave Katma Tui memorial next?

Thursday, December 20, 2007


For the approval of the internet, I submit the following definition of courage from Will Pfiefer's blog:
Meanwhile, I almost forgot to mention that the AMAZONS ATTACK hardcover was due in comic book stores last week. (I forgot mostly because I haven't gotten my box of comp copies yet -- c'mon, DC!). It's all six issues for a mere $24.99, complete with a lovely slipcover and sketchbook section, both by artist extraordinaire Pete Woods. Just the thing for under the tree!

As always, if you have any questions, comments or criticisms, feel free to air them here. I really do want to hear 'em.

Yes, even about AMAZONS ATTACK.

Wednesday, December 19, 2007


[unpracticed attempt at self-promotion] I believe I've mentioned in the past that I sold a small story for inclusion in the Ruins: Terra collection.

Well, after a slight delay that collection is now available on

It contains two whole pages of my fiction writing (written for today's attention span), along with many substantially more involved stories.

In case you have some last-minute holiday shopping, you can go for the good shipping and get it by December 24th. [/unpracticed attempt at self-promotion]

Tuesday, December 18, 2007

Dear god, it's back.

Kadymae discovered the odious "Nice Guy letter" making the rounds, and linked a few reactions to it. I found hers was the best:
If you agree with, or would possibly write, "You ignored the nice guy. You used him for emotional intimacy without reciprocating, in kind, with physical intimacy."

You are not a nice guy. You never were a nice guy. You will never be a nice guy.

You, are the text book definition of a user and that mean, thankless, heartless bitch (of either sex) is on to you like white on rice, so unsubtle is your approach. And, as an aside, an in kind reciprocation would be returned emotional intimacy. What you're asking for is not a like exchange.

The world owes you neither a living nor a lay.

Okay, I've dated this guy. Multiple this guys, actually, before I wised up. This is the guy who pretends to be your friend until he gains your trust and your sympathy, then he manipulates you into dating him. Then he tries to manipulate you into bed.

And if you are honestly, sincerely not interested -- he counts on your guilt and softheartedness to prevent you from turning him down. He turns you into the evil bullying bitch in his sob story if you do turn him down right away. If you go out with him once or twice to give him a fair chance, then let him down easy, then he turns you into the evil bullying bitch who led him on for so long in his sob story.

"Nice Guy" is a dirty word in the feminist community because that's how this guy describes himself, as a "Nice guy who can't cut a break." In reality he's a world class bitter manipulator.

"Nice guy" is just when a bitter manipulator puts on a mask to pretend to be a decent fellow.

I'd much rather a decent fellow, a guy who is actually honestly your friend. Yes, those guys exist. They don't whine about that not being rewarded with sex for being friendly. They are friendly when they actually want to be friends. When they want sex, they don't play up their pathetic sob story, trash all other women, and use guilt to get it from a girl who just wants to talk.

God help you if you're shy or anxious yourself. Because then he's out to assassinate your self-esteem just so he can get a lay. See, being firm and clear and making an enemy of the "Nice Guy" is probably the only way to get rid of him. He knows this, so he plays on any part of your behavior to make you think he's really a decent fellow and you don't want to hurt his feelings. And you want him to be a decent fellow. You need to believe he's a decent fellow, because otherwise your mind is worthless. Otherwise, the only reason anyone would want to talk to you is to get closer to your body. You want so badly to believe he was genuinely interested in you as a person that you go and make excuse after excuse for this guy and let him manipulate you into that relationship. You do this until the circumstances are dire, and you may be stuck with him forever.

Then you finally drop him, and feel like you're a bitch for doing so. And he goes ahead and reinforces that.

I'm sure by now that some "Nice Guys" don't think they're being malicious (just as the shy anxious girl thinks she's being nice by not nipping this thing in the bud). One of Kadymae's commenters talks about how he used to be one and is now learning to be a decent fellow.

Here's the thing, though. It's not really being "nice." It's not really being decent. It's not really being personable in any way. It's being jealous of other men and assuming that all women reason exactly alike (thinking "Hey, that asshole has a girlfriend. I don't. Maybe all women only like assholes" and letting confirmatory bias work its magic). The best I can judge from the writings and whining of professed "Nice Guys" is that this is wanting to be an asshole but having such low self-esteem you feel you can't get away with acting like an asshole. It's this horrible combination of cynicism, cowardice, and pessimism that acts like flashing sign to ward off any chance of procreation.

Honestly, you having trouble getting laid and want to? Stop forwarding the misogynistic emails. Stop trashing your ex-girlfriends. Stop trashing your would-be girlfriends. Stop being fucking sneaky about your crushes.

Read a self-help book. If you can't implement the advice there, see a psychologist. Work out your personal issues before blaming women for your problems.

Then go to the local singles scene.

I know that this is harsh advice and that some of you may doubt my credentials in this area. So for the end of this post I have prepared some brief answers to predictable responses. (These answers will likely not prevent anyone from insisting that I do indeed blame men for everything, but fuck them if they can't read the rest of this blog or even the rest of this post.)

"I'm too shy and nervous around women!!" It is not the job of a girl to help you with that. That is what the shrink is for.

"Only losers go to those mixers and use online dating services!" So you're saying that scheming to get close to a woman by pretending to be her friend makes you NOT a loser somehow? At least with a dating service you're an honest loser, and you have a shot at being a winner.

"It's not worth the trouble." Then don't do it. But don't blame the rest of us for not having a social life.

"My ex-girlfriend really is a bitch." Bitch is a pretty misogynistic insult to be throwing around when you actually mean it. (Yes, I've used that insult about five times by this point, but I'm illustrating attitudes not expressing my actual opinion.) That aside, some ex-girlfriends are genuinely unpleasant people. Have you noticed a pattern of unpleasant ex-girlfriends? Do you feel that these girlfriends were all unpleasant because of your pleasant nature? Do you expect women to be inexplicably unpleasant in reaction to your pleasant nature, and blame the women for it? Do you feel that your ex-girlfriend was an unpleasant girlfriend specifically because she withheld sexual intimacy? If your answered "no" to these questions, then your girlfriend was probably just an unpleasant person. If you answered yes to all (or just the last one) of these questions, you are the unpleasant person. (If your answers are mixed, I suggest soul-searching and not taking my posts so personally.)

"Ragnell, you bitter repressed feminazi bitch -- you're a fucking comic book blogger. What the hell do you know about socialization?" I know who is to blame when I spend a Saturday Night blogging. When I spend a Saturday Night blogging, it's because I didn't put the effort into stepping outside my door. Even if I have a date and it's canceled or a I have a crush and it wasn't reciprocated there are plenty of places to go and plenty of people to see where I live.

Okay, sometimes there's a damned ice storm to blame.

Monday, December 17, 2007

Help me out here.

I'm looking for what you call it when in a TV show/movie/book the main cast members are all white, but there's a black person in a minor part that's a respected position of authority (the rarely-seen boss, the Judge, the Doctor, the local police officer) so that the producers can claim positive racial diversity without having to actually spend time writing plot and characterization for someone who's not white.

I can't be the first one to notice this, so I know there's an easy snappy name for it.

(This isn't for a project, I just saw a movie where they did this and it was really obvious and it has me trying think of the name for it.)

ETA: No, Token's not the word I'm thinking of. There's no importance on what role is played by the character when you use that term. (I also hate that term because too damned many people use it to bash John Stewart.) I'm thinking of when the only person who's not white only appears in one or two scenes and they are specifically in a position of authority. None of the plot can center on them. They aren't even necessarily helpful. They just show up and function as the authority figure for the main character's plot.

ETA #2: Thanks, Matter-Eater Lad. Black Lieutenant Syndrome

And Notintheface? I blame you for my being on Youtube instead of collecting WFA links tonight.