Social Justice

Commentary

Six Rape Tropes and How to Replace Them

The Orville's security officer and XO.

Unless your story is specifically about sexual assault, you should probably remove any rape, attempted rape, or even mention of rape from your story. This is because these depictions normalize sexual assault and are often hurtful to survivors. Let’s go over how rape ends up … read more »

Q&A

How Do I Show That a Character Is Trans?

questions and answer talk bubbles

In a book I am currently writing, the fictional society has moved beyond any kind of transphobia, so being transgender is not treated as being anything out of the ordinary. Given this, I am wondering how to show that a character is transgender if it … read more »

Q&A

How Can I Make My World Accommodating to Disabled People?

questions and answer talk bubbles

I am writing a non-magical fantasy story set in a low-tech world that is primarily composed of city-states with limited regional authority. I am trying to work out what kinds of seemingly realistic accommodations could/would be in place for disabled people. Culturally, I am trying … read more »

Podcast

234 – Harmful Disability Tropes

The Mythcreant Podcast

More than one in ten Americans is disabled, making it one of the largest marginalized groups in the country. Even so, storytellers often have a really difficult time portraying disabled characters. We want to change that, so this episode is all about the most problematic … read more »

Storytelling

Authorial Endorsement 101

Bilbo writing his book.

For all the time we spend arguing about plot holes and magic systems, we spend even more time arguing about what a story means. Fiction can send a powerful message, but first we have to understand what that message is. That’s where authorial endorsement comes … read more »

Commentary

What Storytellers Should Know About Normalization

Three identical white men in identical shirts work together

When we’re making recommendations about story content for social justice reasons, we often mention “normalization.” The basic idea is simple: something that’s depicted in a story is more likely to done by real people. However, there are some common misconceptions about what normalization is and … read more »

Podcast

232 – Avoiding the Fridge

The Mythcreant Podcast

Fiction has a long history of sacrificing marginalized characters to further the arcs of privileged characters, but these days we have a name for that: fridging. Most of us understand that fridging is bad, but why is it bad? And once we understand that, what … read more »

Podcast

231 – Stories for Women

The Mythcreant Podcast

Some stories are clearly marketed at men, while some are clearly marketed at women, but it’s only that second category that’s ever mentioned out loud. Everything else is assumed to be for everyone. Why is that? What is it that characterizes stories aimed at women, … read more »

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