DS is proud to announce a brand new venue for fiction based off one or more fairytale revision. Truancy, as the name suggests, allows for less conventional folk and fairytale retellings. Perhaps “retellings” is too specific a word. I want ambitious short fiction pieces, I want people to consider not just unusual folk or fairytales to retell. I want them to create their own fairytales.

This is guided by the same ethos as Delinquent’s Spice. I want stories from the planet that aren’t hegemonic or caught up with imperialism. I realise there’s a dearth of such venues and we need new venues for short stories that build off folklore and fairytale. The difference is that Truancy stories won’t be connected by prompts, and this allows me to give writers more freedom.

Here are the general guidelines:

1. Short fiction, between 2000-3500 words would be ideal but the hard limit is 4000 words. Payment is a flat rate of USD10 per story.
2. Prose poems, stream-of-consciousness and experimental prose are all welcome in this venue. It’s called Truancy for a reason, you know? Here you get to play.
3. There may occasionally be themed issues and guest editors in the future. When this happens, specific sets of guidelines will be released.
4. The emphasis remains on marginalised voices that are strong, bold, playful and experimental.
a.I want WoC/PoC/QUILTBAG writers. This is also a disability-friendly venue. I want lesser represented, non-Anglophone cultures. I will be happy with non-neurotypical/neurodiverse characters/writers. Non-binary writers are also most welcome.
b. Although the stories accepted in this venue should be primarily written in English, I also accept Englishes, and excerpts and dialogues in other languages, so long as the meaning is self-explanatory (this is important because we don’t want your story to be clogged up with an overload of exposition. That will obscure the story AND your voice).
c. I want stories that shine with dialect, with pidgin, with improvision, with beat, and meter. Let’s shake things up here, let’s be truant, let’s start a fairytale riot.Let’s get rid of that misconception that fairytales and folktales are for the twee, and that they’re no longer relevant. We need them for every age.
4. Do read the general guidelines for Delinquent Spice in regards to inclusiveness, diversity and appropriation. They apply to Truancy as well. This is very important. Do not give me stories that demonise any minority, displays racism, ableism, misogyny and stereotypes.
5. While I use the Aarne-Thompson-Uther (ATU) specifications for Volume One of Delinquent’s Spice, they are by no means the be-all and end-all for folk and fairytales (the systems-obsessed nerd in me does like the elegant simplicity of the categories, but that’s par for the course).
a. Therefore, do look deeper into the treasures of your respective cultures to find these stories. They may exist in children’s books or in a different language. Urban legends are fine too.
b. Do let me know in your cover letter about the fairytale or tale-type you’re referencing. If there’s no available translation in English, just give me the gist of the story! If you’re making it up as you go along but messing around with fairytale/folktale tropes, do let me know as well.
6. Please read the general guidelines here for very essential requirements for both DS pubs. The submissions email address is there too with formatting instructions!

…based on the true story of Dido Belle, a mixed-race woman raised as an aristocrat in 18th-century England. It follows Belle, adopted into an aristocratic family, who faces class and color prejudices. As she blossoms into a young woman, she develops a relationship with a vicar’s son who is an advocate for slave emancipation.

more, plus two clips, here.

RACIALICIOUS IS LOOKING FOR POC CREATORS AT SAN DIEGO COMIC-CON

We’re just over a week away from the pop-culture experience that is San Diego Comic-Con, and while Arturo and Kendra pore over the event schedule to prepare their preview, we’d like to ask your help in finding some people who might be flying under the radar.

If you or somebody you know is a POC creator at the show, drop us a line at team@racialicious.com — use the subject line Racialicious SDCC— or in the comment thread here and let people know about your project. We’ll give you a signal boost in not only our two-part SDCC preview next week, but on social media, as well.

Just like last year, both Kendra and Arturo will be live-tweeting panels and posting during the event, on their respective Twitter accounts and the official Racialicious feed. Do let us know, Racializens, if you’ll be around as well. We’d love to see you there! - AG

vimeo

Help INVISIBLE UNIVERSE get to the next round for the 2013 AbelCine Documentary Grant!

Invisible Universe: a history of blackness in speculative fiction explores the relationship between the Black body and popular fantasy, horror and science fiction literature and film and the alternative perspectives produced by creators of color. This documentary features interviews with major writers, scholars, artists and filmmakers and explores comics, television, film and literature by deconstructing stereotyped images of Black people in the genres. The Invisible Universe documentary ultimately reveals how Black creators have been consciously creating their own universe.

This is so AWESOME and IMPORTANT and just AUGH can you imagine having such an awesome resource if you get a stupid “can you rec any POC SF” question in the future you can be like “HERE IS A WHOLE DOCUMENTARY YOU HAVE NO EXCUSE NOW”

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Helen Oyememi wrote her first book while studying for her “A” levels in Britain. She is of Nigerian descent, and has earned critical raves for her work which includes four novels and two plays. She writes mostly speculative fiction.

Descriptions from Amazon.com

The Icarus Girl

Jessamy “Jess” Harrison, age eight, is the child of an English father and a Nigerian mother. Possessed of an extraordinary imagination, she has a hard time fitting in at school. It is only when she visits Nigeria for the first time that she makes a friend who understands her: a ragged little girl named TillyTilly. But soon TillyTilly’s visits become more disturbing, until Jess realizes she doesn’t actually know who her friend is at all. Drawing on Nigerian mythology, Helen Oyeyemi presents a striking variation on the classic literary theme of doubles — both real and spiritual — in this lyrical and bold debut.

White is for Witching

Miranda is at homehomesick, home sick …”

As a child, Miranda Silver developed pica, a rare eating disorder that causes its victims to consume nonedible substances. The death of her mother when Miranda is sixteen exacerbates her condition; nothing, however, satisfies a strange hunger passed down through the women in her family. And then there’s the family house in Dover, England, converted to a bed-and-breakfast by Miranda’s father. Dover has long been known for its hostility toward outsiders. But the Silver House manifests a more conscious malice toward strangers, dispatching those visitors it despises. Enraged by the constant stream of foreign staff and guests, the house finally unleashes its most destructive power.

With distinct originality and grace, and an extraordinary gift for making the fantastic believable, Helen Oyeyemi spins the politics of family and nation into a riveting and unforgettable mystery.

The Opposite House

Lyrical and intensely moving, The Opposite House explores the thin wall between myth and reality through the alternating tales of two young women. Growing up in London, Maja, a singer, always struggled to negotiate her Afro-Cuban background with her physical home. Yemaya is a Santeria emissary who lives in a mysterious somewherehouse with two doors: one opening to London, the other to Lagos. She is troubled by the ease with which her fellow emissaries have disguised themselves behind the personas of saints and by her inability to recognize them. Interweaving these two tales. Helen Oyeyemi, acclaimed author of The Icarus Girl, spins a dazzling tale about faith, identity, and self-discovery.

Mr. Fox

Fairytale romances end with a wedding. The fairytales that don’t get more complicated. In this book, celebrated writer Mr. Fox can’t stop himself from killing off the heroines of his novels, and neither can his wife, Daphne. It’s not until Mary, his muse, comes to life and transforms him from author into subject that his story begins to unfold differently. Meanwhile, Daphne becomes convinced that her husband is having an affair, and finds her way into Mary and Mr. Fox’s game. And so Mr. Fox is offered a choice: Will it be a life with the girl of his dreams, or a life with an all-too-real woman who delights him more than he cares to admit?

Here also is a fantastic tho spoiler filled review

Junipers Whitening and Victimese

Juniper’s Whitening

"Tell me this - is it true that if you make someone die, and they come out the other side, it doesn’t matter? I’m sure something clung to Lazarus. Something must’ve shone through him."

In Aleph, Beth and Juniper’s nightmare house, kindness is entrapment, and resurrection is a weapon. Aleph love/hates Beth, Beth love/hates Aleph, and all Juniper knows is that Beth can’t seem to stop being murdered.

One thing above all: none of them must look out of the window.

Victimese

"I was thinking, Eve, that you need to touch bottom - just so you know you can do it. So you know it’s not that difficult; so you know that you don’t have to tunnel far; so you know that you’re not that actually as deep as you think you are."

Eve is unable to leave her student room but unable to bear staying in it. In harming herself she hopes to demonstrate her courage and independence to both herself and her friends. But her sister’s arrival and need for her friendship forces her to face painful truths and to examine whether it is possible to temper emotional courage with the humanity to give and ask for aid.

Cambodian director Rithy Panh will be in Los Angeles for the Oscars on Sunday. His film, “The Missing Picture,” is the first film from Cambodia ever to be nominated for an Academy Award. It’s Rithy Panh’s own personal memories of spending four years of his childhood living in a labor camp under the Khmer Rouge, watching as almost every member of his family died.

Watch on jhameia.tumblr.com

EXCLUSIVE: “Number 13” Proof of Concept Trailer

Artist Robert Love and writer David Walker, creators of the comic book series “Number 13” published by Dark Horse Comics, have teamed up with commercial director Steve Petersen and producer David M. Uslan to create the official teaser for their newest project. The proof of concept clip, debuting exclusively on Comic Book Resources, was designed to show the look of Number 13 and give audiences a little taste of the young character’s personality.

Saw this at the Black Panel at SDCC, thought I ought to share mightily.

The BBC has put out a call for new comedy scripts that promote positive portrayals of Transgender people in mainstream comedy.

The call is through its Writersroom initiative, which was set up to promote new writing talent.

Callinf it the Trans Comedy Award, the deadline for entries is February 28, and will pay a writer or writers up to£5,000 (about $7,900) to develop a pilot.

The BBC says it looking for original sitcoms, comedy dramas or sketch shows featuring transgender characters and/or themes – written for television.

At the heart of it all is the writer, and at BBC Writersroom it is our passion to find the most exciting writers, voices and stories that might not have been heard and then support them as they work in partnership across the BBC,” said the BBC’s creative director of new writing, Kate Rowland.

Rowland will judge the award along with BBC head of creative resources Ian Critchley, executive producer for BBC Comedy Jon Plowman and an as yet unnamed comedy writer or actor.

By the way, the challenge is open to writers across the globe, BUT with one caveat:

If you are not currently a UK resident you can still submit but, if selected, the UK must be your place of residence for at least two years from the end of May 2013. This is required in order that selected scripts can be developed in conjunction with the BBC as per the current average timeline for development.

So, yes, you can submit from wherever you are, but if your script is selected, be prepared to move to the UK in May, where you’ll live for at least 2 years. If that’s cool with you, then, give it a go.

Click HERE to read the full terms and conditions of the competition.

Good luck!

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For Netflix subscribes with Instant Watch access, a collection of four short films, Africa First: Volume 1, is available for streaming. The volume, which highlights emerging African directors, includes futuristic Pumzi (South Africa/Kenya), set “35 years after World War III, the water war”; The Abyss Boys (South Africa), a coming of age story; Saint Louis Blues/Un transport en commun (Senegal), a musical taking place on a cross country trip from Dakar to Saint Louis; and The Tunnel (South Africa), a mystery story set in 1980s Matabeleland, Zimbabwe.

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Rania Abdel-Fattah is a Palestinian-Australian writer, human rights and litigation lawyer living in Sydney Australia. Most of her work has been for children and young adults, but she recently wrote her first adult book.

Book blurbs are taken from Amazon and Google books.

Does My Head Look Big in This?

Sixteen-year-old Amal makes the decision to start wearing the hijab full-time and everyone has a reaction. Her parents, her teachers, her friends, people on the street. But she stands by her decision to embrace her faith and all that it is, even if it does make her a little different from everyone else. Can she handle the taunts of “towel head,” the prejudice of her classmates, and still attract the cutest boy in school? Brilliantly funny and poignant, Randa Abdel-Fattah’s debut novel will strike a chord in all teenage readers, no matter what their beliefs.

(There is rampant diet talk in here, but at the same time a fat girl is affirmed as just as fine just the way she is)

Ten Things I Hate About Me

"At school I’m Aussie-blonde Jamie — one of the crowd. At home I’m Muslim Jamilah — driven mad by my Stone Age dad. I should win an Oscar for my acting skills. But I can’t keep it up for much longer…" Jamie just wants to fit in. She doesn’t want to be seen as a stereotypical Muslim girl, so she does everything possible to hide that part of herself. Even if it means pushing her friends away because she’s afraid to let them know her dad forbids her from hanging out with boys or that she secretly loves to play the darabuka (Arabic drums).

Where the Streets Had a Name

Thirteen year old Hayaat is on a mission. She believes a handful of soil from her grandmother’s ancestral home in Jerusalem will save her beloved Sitti Zeynab’s life. The only problem is that Hayaat and her family live behind the impenetrable wall that divides the West Bank, and they’re on the wrong side of check points, curfews, and the travel permit system. Plus, Hayaat’s best friend Samy always manages to attract trouble. But luck is on the pair’s side as they undertake the journey to Jerusalem from the Palestinian Territories when Hayaat and Samy have a curfew-free day to travel.

The Friendship Matchmaker

Lara Zany is known throughout the school yard as the Friendship Matchmaker-kids call on her expertise and follow her hard-and-fast rules to find best friendships. Lara’s documented everything from friendship categories (the BOBF, or Bus Only Best Friend; the TL, or Total Loner; the LBC, or Loner By Choice) to strategies (BJF, or the Bungee Jump Friend; FTFP, or Field Trip Faux Pas). But when new kid in school Emily Wong questions Lara’s methods, the two decide to compete by each finding a TL a best friend. But Lara, an LBC, doesn’t bank on finding her own best friendship in the most unlikely of places… . In the tradition of Clueless, this reimagining of Jane Austen’s Emma for middle school readers is a funny and heartwarming story of celebrating individuality and finding acceptance.

The Friendship Matchmaker Goes Undercover

Lara’s friendship matchmaking days are over now that she has an Official Best Friend (OBF) in Tanya. But when when a new boy named Majur transfers to their grade and outplays Chris Martin, the school bully, on the soccer field, Chris’s rule is suddenly over. Now alone and unable to make friends on his own, Chris turns to Lara Zany who can’t resist the challenge. Finding Chris a friend isn’t her only challenge-Lara must balance her new friendship with Tany and Emily, plus make sure Majur, a refugee from Sudan, fits in. Lara Zany has her work cut out for her in this charming sequel about finding true friends despite big differences.

Buzz Off!

Noor can’t sleep. That pesky fly will not leave him alone! He even thinks he can hear it talking! If he only knew how to get rid of it, everything would be better - or would it

Noah’s Law

Sixteen-year-old Noah is a troublemaker. His father is a hotshot barrister. This is not a good combination. When Noah gets caught mucking up at school, his dad sends him to work at his aunt’s law firm during the holidays to ‘learn responsibility’ and ‘fix his attitude’. There he meets Jacinta - the cute intern who knows her way around a photocopier, and Casey - the wicked witch of the firm. Noah becomes involved in a case where a woman has been killed during a mugging gone wrong. There’s a grieving husband, a guilty employer, and an open and shut case involving lots of money. But right and wrong, and crime and punishment are soon entangled as Noah realises that things are seldom what they seem.

No Sex in the City

It is a truth universally acknowledged …Esma is a modern Muslim woman with an age-old dilemma. She is well-educated, well-travelled and has excellent taste in music, but the hunt for Mr Right leads her to a number of Mr Wrongs. Together with wild-haired Ruby, principled Lisa, and drop-dead gorgeous Nirvana, Esma forms the No Sex in the City Club. Her quest for The One (or Mr Almost-Perfect) was never going to be easy, but soon enough it takes an unexpected and thrilling detour.

…first all-black rock group to enjoy massive commercial success since Jimi Hendrix’s Band of Gypsys. The members of Living Colour were also fiercely political and spoke out regularly about issues of race and power in American life, which…may have blunted the band’s commercial success.

more, plus audio interview with the author, here.

Astro-Blackness: Remaking and (Re)Mixing Black Identity Before, Now and Beyond

Astro-Blackness is a two-day colloquium scheduled to take place February 12th and 13th at Loyola Marymount University, Los Angeles, California.  The colloquium serves as a “space” where the intellectual, creative, literary and even visual expressions of the “black experience” is examined through the prism of Afrofuturism, in a manner that is both abstract and plausible and no longer dominated by monolithic tropes perpetually tied to an urban landscape or exclusively earthbound. 

Thank you for your informal commitment to participate in this collection of artists, intellectuals and academics.

 This is a formal invitation for you to attend this colloquium.  Below is the topic list and time schedule. 

Best regards,
adilifu nama

DAY ONE—FEBRUARY 12TH

 9am-9:30am –OPENING REMARKS
Adilifu Nama — LMU

9:45am-10:25am: The Black Imagination and Afrofuturism:  Issues and Ideas of an Aesthetic
John Jennings — University of Buffalo

10:30am-11:45am: Science Fiction and Race
Reynaldo Anderson — Harris Stowe State University
Nnedi Okorafor — Chicago State University
Scott Heath — Georgia State University
Isaiah Lavender — LSU

12pm-1:15pm—Lunch Break

1:30-3:00: Milestone, Graphic Novels, Animation and Afrofuturism
Mike Davis & Denys Cowan — Milestone Media Founders
Jonathan Gayles — Georgia State University
Kevin Grevioux — Co-creator of Underworld (2003) film franchise.
LeSean Thomas — Animation Director (Boondocks, Black Dynamite)
Enrique Carrion – Creator/Writer of Vesell

3:15pm-5:45pm: Afrofuturism and Multimedia
The Love Brothers (Jeremy and Robert) — Artists
Brandon Easton — Writer
Tony Puryear—Writer
Kevin Sipp — Multimedia Artist

DAY TWO—FEBRUARY 13TH

9am-9:30am –OPENING REMARKS
Adilifu Nama

9:45am-10:30am: The Black Imagination and Science Fiction: A Conversation on Gender, Race and Ideas
Nalo Hopkinson — UC Riverside
Nnedi Okorafor — Chicago State University
Moderator: John Jennings — UB

10:45am-11:45am: The Articulation of Racial Ethics and Afrofuturism
Safiya Noble — University Illinois Urbana Champaign
Rev. Andrew Rollins — Writer
Walidah Imarsha — Writer/Activist
Adrienne Maree Brown — Writer

12pm-1:15pm—Lunch Break

1:30-2:45pm: Octavia Butler, Samuel Delany & Ismael Reed:  Radical Race Talk, Crit/Lit and Sci-Fi
Bill Campbell — Writer
Nalo Hopkinson — UCR
Ayize Jama Everett — Writer
D. Scott Miller — Writer/Artist

3pm-4:30pm: Spaceships, Motherships, and Black Arks as Metaphor and Motif: Janelle Monae, Sun Ra, Lee “Scratch” Perry, Flying Lotus and Alice Coltrane
Scot Brown — UCLA
Didier Sylvain – PhD Candidate, Columbia University
Gabriel Solis — Musicologist
Ytasha Womack — Author/Futurist

5:00-6:00pm: Parting Shots
M. Asli Dukan — Filmmaker
Ebony Thomas — UPENN
Grace Gibson — UC Berkeley
Sherryl Vint — UC Riverside

Rebagel widely!

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You Should Be Reading: Vandana Shiva.

Bio from South End Press

Born in India in 1952, Vandana Shiva is a world-renowned environmental leader and thinker. Director of the Research Foundation on Science, Technology, and Ecology, she is the author of many books, including Staying Alive: Women, Ecology, and Development (South End Press, 2010) Soil Not Oil: Environmental Justice in an Age of Climate Crisis (South End Press, 2008), Earth Democracy: Justice, Sustainability, and Peace (South End Press, 2005),Water Wars: Pollution, Profits, and Privatization (South End Press, 2001), Biopiracy: The Plunder of Nature and Knowledge (South End Press, 1997), Monocultures of the Mind (Zed, 1993), and The Violence of the Green Revolution (Zed, 1992).

Shiva is a leader in the International Forum on Globalization, along with Ralph Nader and Jeremy Rifkin. She addressed the World Trade Organization summit in Seattle, 1999, as well as the recent World Economic Forum in Melbourne , 2000. In 1993, Shiva won the Alternative Nobel Peace Prize (the Right Livelihood Award). In 2010, she was awarded the Sydney Peace Prize for her commitment to social justice. The founder of Navdanya (“nine seeds”), a movement promoting diversity and use of native seeds, she also set up the Research Foundation for Science, Technology, and Ecology in her mother’s cowshed in 1997. Its studies have validated the ecological value of traditional farming and been instrumental in fighting destructive development projects in India .

Before becoming an activist, Shiva was one of India ’s leading physicists. She holds a master’s degree in the philosophy of science and a PhD in particle physics.

Some of the books are available at South End Press, a poc run independent press, including some in Spanish.

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The pic on the left is a thing I bought at SDCC: Smut Peddler, an anthology of sex-positive, lady-friendly porn by “various hands” from Iron Circus Comics, run by Spike Trotman, pictured on the right. She told me it has lots of ladies of color and queer people smutting it up and I thus look forward to it and I thought you should all know about her. 

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