Thursday, March 9, 2017

Women in Horror Month Epilogue

Yesterday was International Women's Day.

February was Women in Horror Month.

And what did we learn?

Sadly, we learned there are too many cowardly idiots in this world and they are an embarrassment to the rest of us on this planet.

We learned that there are people who claim to be smart who just don't get it.

I would love to write that we don't really need a Women in Horror Month (WiHM) just so we can have a great opportunity to celebrate the incredible talent contributing to our beloved genre.  But that's just not true, is it?

No, we need to have WiHM for a whole list of reasons, the primary being that some motherfuckers just don't get it.

We need a WiHM because some people have narrow tastes and will never branch out to read anything other than some testosterone-dripping display of pseudo-masculine, cliche-driven schlock-o-rama that is the fictional equivalent of Hungarian Goulash.  And usually, there's a pen name plastered on the cover that borders on the edge of being more apt for porn than fiction.

No, we need a WiHM so we can tell these guys, "Look,'re missing the good stuff."

I've been reading more and more horror written by women.  This isn't because I drank some kool-aid and suddenly realized for the first time in my life that women are an important demographic in horror literature and I just have to parrot this on my blog.  I don't drink Kool-aid, I've been a fan of many of these writers for a while, and I mean really--who blogs anymore?

When I was a kid, I figured there were good female horror writers out there--I just didn't know of any.  Now, I do.  See how that works?

But it's more than that.  I really fucking hate having anything to do with WiHM other than being a fan because it feels too much like some patronizing, slobbering, redneck back-slapping a lady and telling her, "there, there--you'll get your time in the spotlight and who knows?  Maybe you'll even sell a couple of copies.  Wouldn't that be nice?"

Hell, that's never happened to me and I'm pissed off just reading that.  I won't get into how I know I'd make a shitty woman.

I rely on WiHM because it helps sort out the good stuff for those of us who are too broke to spend a lot of money on new releases.  Anybody who has read this blog will tell you I'm always flat-broke and living hand-to-mouth.  There's no way in hell I can afford to buy stuff I haven't read reviews about and there's no way I'm going to take a risk speculating on some unknown.

Having said all of that, what WiHM does for somebody like me is give me options that work.  I need those.

Do we need WiHM for the gender inequality in fiction?  Yes.  Of course we do.

Honestly, this whole debate, in my mind, is like to grade-school kids having one of those debates in science class where they both explain why oxygen is so important.

"Well, I like oxygen because I need to breathe."

"Yeah, but I need oxygen because my cells do something sciency with all of those special molecules I made out of construction paper and pipe cleaners."

"Oh yeah?  Well I need oxygen to speak sexy sweet nothings in your mom's ear when she's over at my house after you've gone to bed."

And then the teacher gets involved, both kids end up in detention after class, and they still get a B+ because at least they pronounced the name of the element correctly.

But that's not the problem.  The problem seems to be the increasing numbers of men who bitch and complain about WiHM.  How can anybody possibly bitch and complain about a month when the good stuff is highlighted?

Granted, most of these "men" are trolls hiding behind fake internet names so they can say incredibly stupid shit and laugh about it later on.  Sadly, all too often the Golden Rule of the Web is ignored.

Don't feed the troll.  By reposting the ignorant shit posted under a nickname the bastards seem more plentiful.

I know, blame the trolled for the trolling.

The problem isn't the trolls, it's the cowardice rampant amongst men.  It's always a coward who posts ignorant shit online to women.  And then it gets re-tweeted or reposted on Facebook and all anybody remembers is another "man" said some nasty shit to a woman.

We need International Women's Day even worse than WiHM.  But we also need a day of atonement for shitheads out there who can't put their own names to their posts to anybody vulnerable.

Perhaps that's just another plot bunny for one of the many talented horror writers out there who just happen to be female.  "The Troll Afraid of Women."

It would make a great story, I think.  Men, afraid of their own shadows, look online one day in early February and to their horror, they find women being treated not just equally, but according to their talents, skills, dedication, and hard work.  The troll thinks about this and after wiping away the drool, realizes there are women out there who might actually get paid and given attention commensurate with their value.

But then again, based on what I saw in recent days, there have been plenty of men shitting their pants and such a fictional story would just cause unneeded panic that would lead to thousands of men coming down with a case of the vapors and hysteria.  

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