artists guide

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“When you’re queer, no one ever sits you down and says ‘This is our story.’ Sure, you hear snippets. Friends tell friends what they know, terrible movies provide some context, but you don’t often get to share the experience of learning history together.”

With Serving Pride: The Handbook for your Queer History Dinner Party, Geeks OUT hopes to change that. Illustrated by contemporary queer artists, the book will guide dinner guests through a ritual meal where queer history is retold through readings, songs, games, recipes, and art. Guests will learn about the Daughters of Bilitis, sing chants from Stonewall, recall the drag ball culture of Harlem in the 1920s, and remember the queer figures who redefined American music, literature, and fashion.

In addition to printing a full-color version of the book, Geeks OUT intends to make a printable PDF version available for free. Support its publication and learn more about the project here.

Survival Guide on Loving a Survivor

when she is fidgeting with her hands
do not hold them.
she is trying to build the part of herself that will want to wake up tomorrow.
she is trying to build a future that she is still in
& she is trying to fit it inside her skin.

when you find cracks in her veins,
do not treat her like an emergency.
she was always told that all the answers were inside herself
& she couldn’t handle not knowing.
she heard that true beauty was on the inside
& some days she’ll do anything to feel whole again.

If she seems distant -
know that she is not gone.
She has known the chaos of earthquakes
She is incapable of a quiet escape.
If she was gone -
the front door would always echo the gunshot that went off
as it slammed when she ran.
the alarms would never stop sounding
reminding you of the clumsy intruder that is not coming back.
If she seems distant -
she is trying to edit instead of delete.
& sometimes the difference between
something & nothing
is one single
space.
so give her all the spaces she needs.

When she stares off into nothing -
do not demand her attention.
The explosions from the war still go off inside her head.
They splatter images of the past onto the walls.
& like the exact opposite of what home should be -
she wants to look away,
but she is desperate to find,
amongst the debris,
the first bullet that tainted her memory.

When she is angry -
understand that in the boxing matches
she challenges you to -
you are never really the opponent.
& though she never misses the mark
on your heart,
& though she is made of uncharted landmines,
she is still just swinging punches at the mirror
hoping she’ll stop seeing the monster in her own reflection.

When she is sad -
hold her.
Her silence is measured in her distance from Earth.
& there is no gravity in space to hold the weight of tears.
So when your touch shakes her body with sobs,
know that reentering the atmosphere is so much pressure.

There will be days,
when the memories cut her like shrapnel.
when all hands feel like those of the hit-man.
when your words are tainted by her own muffled screams.
when she will forget what living means.

So on those days,
tell her you’ll plant & water beautiful moments in her mind.
prove that open hands do not always take.
let her scream pain. scream back only love -
she needs to know her voice is an anthem to victory.

& everyday,
remind her she is not a victim.
remind her that she is alive.
& remind her that as an amputee
learns to walk on new feet,
she will relearn love
& you are there to teach her.

the gentleperson’s guide to artist etiquette on tumblr

Hi there! Artists are a dearly beloved part of fandom and Tumblr, and yet they also get a lot of shit. A lot of shit. I think much of it comes from a place of unfamiliarity, so I’ve put together a quick guide to how to make artists happier. 

1) Be mindful that many artists have thousands of followers. If they don’t respond to you, that doesn’t mean they hate you, or that they’re an asshole: It means that they have a lot of followers and fans and can’t get to everyone. 

2) If you tag an artist in something, or write them a gift fic, don’t make repeated demands that the artist look at your post/AO3 and tell you what they think. The artist might be busy, they might not have noticed, or they even might be uncomfortable with what you tagged them in. They’re not obligated to look at what they didn’t ask for. 

3) Don’t write unrequested fanfic on their art posts. This might be controversial, because it’s done a lot in fandom, but honestly: a lot of artists are uncomfortable with this. Some of them have been triggered by what was written. Sometimes they just don’t want it associated with their work. Ask permission first, or write your fanfic in a separate post and link to the art. 

4) Do not RP on art posts. See above. 

5) If you’re a minor, don’t contact an artist about their porn. Don’t tag an artist in YOUR porn. I can’t believe I have to say this! But really: don’t. 

6) Show basic decency in your tags. Don’t hate on the pairing, fandom, character, art style, whatever. Don’t be racist. Don’t be homophobic. Don’t be transphobic. Don’t be misogynist. Don’t say things like “this art but with pairing [X] instead” ESPECIALLY if you’re suggesting that an artist who’s doing m/m or f/f should do a het pairing.

7) Don’t tell the artist your sexual fantasies about their work, even if you leave that to the tags. 

8) Don’t request things if the artist has not asked for requests. 

9) If an artist has a FAQ page, read it before contacting them and follow those guidelines. 

10) Artists are wonderful and I love them.