it’s fanfiction writers appreciation day, and this means I’m going to get all sappy. there are so, so many incredible writers I have read over the years in fandom, who have inspired me and encouraged me whose work I’ll sit down and read again and again, who can make me think about characters in new ways and read things I never thought I’d read. who make me cry and laugh and be uncomfortably turned on.
I’ve been at a con all day and I’m pretty beat, but I wanted to write a quick shoutout anyway to a few of the fanfiction writers I know who make glorious things happen.
@portraitoftheoddity, who always brings the best headcanons and knows how to spin a story that hurts so good.
@mostfacinorous, who loves a good ‘rip your heart out and stomp on it’ story and does it with flair.
I think it was a Romani person from my country who said that it’d be better to make the problem words feel more positive by using them as such - than to constantly make new words when the one that’s in use starts feeling negative. What do you think about this idea?
I think reclaiming language is hard and complicated and fraught with difficulty, but I also tend to be much more in favor of angling toward the positive than toward the negative, if that makes sense - more “use this” than “don’t use that”. I think that policing the words people use to describe themselves tends to result, a lot of times, in a kind of internal ouroboros of nastiness.
I think, too, that there’s something insidious about the idea that “oh, if we can just rid language of these specific words we’ll be fine” when honestly, I’d almost rather hear someone say “look at what they did, that person must be crazy” than “look at what they did, that person must be mentally ill.” the change in terminology does not change the attitude. similarly, me saying “god I feel crazy” does not somehow reinforce the stigma against mental illness, for example.
I also think a lot of times reclamation of slurs is really personal and hard to dictate. what works for one person might not work for another person. for instance: I like the word “queer” but I know people who aren’t comfortable with it. I’m not going to tell them they have to use it, but I’m also going to ask that they not tell me not to use it.
tl;dr language is super complicated and mostly I just wish people would think a little more and not act like “oh just don’t say [x] word” is a solution for anything, especially when often the people using those words are part of the group affected.