Critical thoughts on “Once Upon A Time” and fandom

Over on Tumblr, I’ve been carving out a niche in the Once Upon A Time fandom for a place where we can critically analyze the show and the fandom, with a special emphasis on the messages it sends and what people take from it.

For the most part, I kept a lot of that stuff over there because my Tumblr is the place where I can really relax and let my freak flag fly. That said, I do want to start bringing some of my OUAT stuff over here because it’s relevant to Ars Marginal.

Keep coming back and bring some friends because it’s going to get pretty interesting now.

Racist Hunger Games Fans Are Disappoint

And white folks flip their shit because a black girl is in a movie.

Over on Twitter the fine folks at Tu Books made the best point:

“The comments about race in the casting of The Hunger Games just proves how much we need more diversity in science fiction/fantasy.”

I especially love the other point they made:

“And if you’re offended by people who want to whitewash The Hunger Games, here’s what to do: read a diverse dystopia.”

Open discussion: Things I learned from TV

Over on Tumblr, there’s a great thread going on about what we learn about life and people by watching TV. Since this is Ars Marginal, and this is the sort of thing we talk about, why don’t we continue the conversation here?

Here are a few things I learned:

  1. Bisexual means lesbian until the straight White guy comes along.
  2. Only 2 types of people talk about race: neo-Nazi skinhead KKK mofos and paranoid militant Black people with chips on their shoulders.
  3. All lesbians want sperm donors to make babies. Failing that, adopting a Chinese girl would do.
  4. Disabled people don’t have lives like the rest of us. They exist to be symbols of the human spirit.
  5. Everyone in NYC has glamorous media jobs that pay enough to live in huge Manhattan apartments that don’t have mice or roaches.

What did you learn from TV?

Brain Food – Episode 12

Hello everyone, and welcome to another first for me as I discuss the anthology, Steam Powered: Lesbian Steampunk Stories!

This is more than simply titilation, but a collection of short stories that revolve around steampunk while also having a plethoral of interesting, fascinating characters in various stories that range from political intrigue and espionage to plain old, lovely romance, all while being seen through the lens of people that steampunk normally would not include. It was a fantastic read and the editor has, in recent months, released a second volume that I highly recommend you all seek out and buy.

Brain Food – Episode 11

Hello everyone, and welcome to the first video of the new year! Apologies for this one coming out so late, but I’ve been pretty busy.

Nonetheless, I bring to you the latest episode, wherein I review the graphic novel Birth of a Nation, written by Aaron McGruder and Reginald Hudlin, and drawn by Kyle Baker.

Brain Food – Episode 11

I hope that everyone enjoys it… I even added in a small blooper reel at the end.

Reflections on Dennis R. Upkins’ “Hollowstone”

On Saturday, November 19, fellow artist and internet husband Neo Prodigy (aka Dennis R. Upkins) will do a book signing for his debut novel, Hollowstone.

In honor of that occasion, I’m finally doing something I don’t normally do and talk at length about a piece that has had a strangely parallel journey with my work work on Tulpa, or Anne&.

Here we go.

La Casa Azul Bookstore’s 40k in 40 days campaign

La Casa Azul Bookstore: 40k in 40 Days

The ‘40K in 40 days’ campaign will secure the funding necessary to open La Casa Azul Bookstore as a real, physical, retail space! Using the concept of placemaking, La Casa Azul Bookstore aims to create a business that is much more than your average retail store by offering book clubs, author signings, story time for children and a community meeting space. La Casa Azul Bookstore will sell new & used books, coffee, pastries, art, clothing and locally-made cards and gifts. A fresh stock of books by local and Latino writers will help solidify our niche as a purveyor of authors of local and regional interest. La Casa Azul Bookstore will cross-promote with local businesses to highlight the importance of sustainability & buying locally. We will continue to work with area schools and nonprofits to promote literacy in the East Harlem community.

Your contribution to the ‘40K in 40 days’ campaign automatically makes you a member of the Founder’s Circle and your name is added to the donor wall. In addition, there are perks for the different contribution levels, plus the satisfaction of knowing you participated in the opening of independent bookstore in El Barrio!
The money raised will be used to purchase inventory, bookshelves, fixtures, café equipment and pay for permits. Most importantly, it will secure the deposit on a retail space and allow for La Casa Azul Bookstore to open its doors in 2012.

Sounds exciting, right? It is! But, again, I need your help to get this project off the ground.
Bookstores are a crucial part of a community’s cultural, educational and social character. Help me establish La Casa Azul Bookstore in East Harlem to continue connecting people, books, and the ideas they bring together. I can’t do this work without you.

With gratitude,
Aurora Anaya-Cerda

“Why Anne Hathaway?”

Why Anne Hathaway?

That’s the first question and most frequent question that people ask me about Tulpa, or Anne&Me. I try to be gracious and answer the question in the spirit in which it was asked. But the more I encounter it, the more it unsettles me. I deal with it because that comes with the territory of choosing to a famous person as a central character. Nevertheless, after dwelling in this piece for so long, I’m starting to understand the reasons behind my increasing discomfort.

Continue reading

Hollowstone: The Official Release

Hello. My name is Dennis R. Upkins and today is the official release of my debut novel, Hollowstone. The book is kinda awesome if I do say so myself, and I’d like for you to check it out.

Life for Noah Scott changes drastically when he is accepted to Hollowstone Academy, one of the most prestigious boarding schools in the country set in the mountains of Eastern Tennessee. Within the hallowed halls of the illustrious school, Noah soon discovers that the world of the privileged is rife with social hierarchies, politics, depravity and corruption. It is also there that Noah meets his roommate and best friend, the charming and enigmatic Caleb Warner. 

Tragedy soon strikes when Cal is brutally murdered in a hold-up. But when Noah is haunted by Cal’s ghost, he soon discovers that the random act of violence was in fact a premeditated one. Determined to uncover the truth and find Cal’s killer, Noah soon finds that the school and its patrons have more than their share of secrets. Secrets they are willing to preserve at any cost. Noah also quickly learns that greater supernatural forces are at play. In a race against time, Noah must solve Cal’s murder before he’s the killer’s next victim.

You can check out the official trailer below:



So why should you pick up Hollowstone?

Here are 12 reasons why I think you’ll want to grab the novel.

In many respects it’s a modern day retelling/homage to the Great Gatsby with a Southern Gothic twist. But more than that, the story features both POCs and queer characters in leading and compelling roles. In fact, of the three main characters, one is a young black male while the other is a bisexual female teen. And for marginalized readers, we know all too well the dearth of stories that feature us with respect.

Characters welcome, this is a profile on the players of Hollowstone. And just to get you even more intrigued, check out an excerpt from the novel.

But wait! There’s more!

As part of promoting the novel, I’m in the middle of a virtual book tour. Not only have I had the distinct pleasure and honor of answering questions about Hollowstone and becoming a published author, but I’ve also had the privilege of writing a series of guest posts about why diversity in the media matters and why representation affects real life.

Hollowstone is available now in paperback and Kindle on Amazon. It’s also available in other ebook formats at Parker Publishing. You can find me at my author page on Amazon, Goodreads and my official website.

Hollowstone, it’s out now. Grab it today. Tell your friends. I think you’ll like it. It’s an awesome story. Granted, I could be a bit biased. Maybe….just a little. ;-)