Episode 114: Writing outside Your Lane

This week Andi and Lise discuss the old writing adage of “writing what you know” and how that is or is not problematic. They delve into “writing outside your lane” and writing characters who aren’t like you, and being responsible about doing that and why it’s important, and why you need to think about the lens through which you view the larger society. There are no easy answers, but the conversations are important. 

Writers on “writing what you know” 

Mo Black on writing diverse characters 

Alexander Chee at Vulture on how to unlearn everything: “When it comes to writing ‘other,’ what questions are we not asking?” 

Writing the Other — Resources 

Shout-outs: Lise shouted out horror novel The Hollow Places by T. Kingfisher in which a woman, freshly divorced ends up living in her uncle’s house and discovers a portal to other worlds haunted by scary things. Andi is shouting out working on getting her stress levels under control and also, she would like to shout-out Lise for doing the editing on the audiofiles! GO, Lise!!!!! 

Episode 104: Pride and Representation

Pride and Representation 

This week, in recognition of Pride month, Andi and Lise talk about LGBTQ representation in media, including tokenism and how it intersects with queerbaiting and even bury your gays. When is tokenism “good”? When is it “bad”? Join them as they try to unravel some of this. 

Shout outs: Lise is stoked about an 8-episode mini-campaign for the D&D show Critical Role, which just wrapped up its second campaign. It’s another Exandria adventure! It features part of the regular cast, so you’ll still be getting great voice acting. Give it a whirl! Meanwhile, Andi is still obsessing over Acorn TV and she’s been watching a lot of the NZ mystery series Brokenwood, which features a really quirky lead detective (among a lot of other quirky characters) who loves old country music and drives a funky old car. Really cool to watch the characters gel, and there are some great mysteries. 

Episode 98: Beyond Romance in Lesfic with KD Williamson

Andi and Lise were joined by author KD Williamson to talk about lesbian fiction aka “lesfic.” Why does it seem to be predominantly defined by storylines that feature romance — F/F — that usually involve sexual consummation, whether it’s fade to black or depicted as part of the storyline? Why aren’t there other genres represented as much as romance under the lesfic umbrella? After all, being LGBTQ+ involves a lot more than romance and sex. Andi, Lise, and KD ponder. 

Shout-outs: Lise is not pleased about this, but getting it done will be great – fixing up the bathroom! For her part, KD has been doing some of her gaming. She’s got Assassin’s Creed: Valhalla on the Xbox and Ni no Kuni on the Nintendo Switch AND the PS5! Meanwhile, Andi sucked it up and just bought a PS4. The first 3 games she got are Uncharted: Lost LegacyHorizon Zero Dawn,  and Wolfenstein II: New Colossus

Episode 95: Writing in the Time of COVID

Andi and Lise talk about how to create/write during a time of intense upheaval – in this case, a pandemic. How can writers incorporate it? Do they? Should they? How do you incorporate global traumatic events into, e.g., romance? How can you ensure that you are accurately capturing the experiences of people from different backgrounds who are also experiencing the pandemic? Also, Andi coins the term “panfic” though probably somebody out there has already done it. LOL 

Shout-outs: Lise highly recommends two novellas by Vietnamese author Nghi Vo. The novellas are 1 and 2 in the Singing Hills Cycle and include “The Empress of Salt and Fortune” and “When the Tiger Came Down the Mountain.” Queer rep, interesting POV approach. Andi has started watching season 2 of the CW’s Nancy Drew take and so far, she’s enjoying it. The new approach takes on Nancy Drew with paranormal twists. You can find the first season on Amazon Prime

Episode 87: What Do You Do When Your Faves Let You Down?

Warning: this week’s discussion will include the subjects of transphobia, racism, anti-Semitism, anti-LGBTQ sentiment, and sexual assault. 

This week, Andi and Lise were joined by Tara Scott, book reviewer extraordinaire (Smart Bitches, Trashy Books and The Lesbian Review), to discuss writers whose work they may still admire but who they have stopped supporting because of said writers’ personal views made public and/or actions. There are no easy answers, and everyone who consumes content should make their own decisions on whether to support that content or not. Here, the LGO crew grapple with what that means in their own consumption habits, and grapple, too, with what it means to find out one of your faves has said or done something that goes against their own personal views and/or that has potentially harmed others. 

Find Tara at Smart Bitches, Trashy Books and The Lesbian Review.

Episode 81: Disclosure

This week Andi and Lise discuss the brand new documentary on Netflix, Disclosure, about trans representation in media. Laverne Cox is the executive producer and the documentary includes commentary from several trans actors, scholars, and creatives who discuss the harmful and dangerous tropes that trans characters have been subjected to for decades, but also the double-edged sword of that representation, a question Lise and Andi grapple with: is bad rep better than no rep? And how do we negotiate bad rep with visibility? Andi and Lise loved this documentary, they learned a lot, and they’ll be watching it again. It stays with you – as it should.

Find Disclosure on Netflix.
Watch the trailer HERE.
List of cast and crew HERE.

Shout-outs!
Lise highly recommends the book Planetfall, by Hugo-winning author Emma Newman. It’s part of her Planetfall series. Follow Ren and Lee Suh-Mi as they decide to seek out another planet beyond Earth that promises to reveal the truth about our place in the cosmos.

Andi is reading the graphic novel Archival Quality, written by Ivy Noelle Weir and illustrated by Steenz. Celeste loses her job at a library and takes another at a museum as an archivist, but it’s not what it seems and she soon finds herself confronting her relationships, her mental health, and possibly her grip on reality as she starts to dream of a woman she’s never met.

Episode 79: Decolonizing Our Media

Andi and Lise have been working on expanding and decolonizing their media consumption, seeking out more creators of color and more creators who are differently abled, neurodiverse, and from different cultural and socioeconomic backgrounds than they are. They each share some of that media in this episode.

Lise:
Binti novella series by Nnedi Okorafor
Octavia Butler’s Kindred graphic novel adaptation
N.K. Jemisin, Inheritance trilogy; see also her short story anthology How Long ’til Black Future Month
Movie D.E.B.S., written and directed by Angela Robinson (We talked about this movie in our very first episode!!)
Ebony Warriors Studio, cosplay (also find on Instagram)

Andi:
Ascension, by Jacqueline Koyanagi
N.K. Jemisin, Far Sector comic series
Movie Black Panther, directed and written by Ryan Coogler
Website Black Girl Nerds (LOL Andi and Lise lost count and Andi did 4 instead of 5); NOTE: website was fine at recording time, but afterward, it appears to be undergoing some work. You can find BGN on Twitter and Instagram, too.

Shout-outs: Lise enjoyed the zombie apocalypse movie Anna and the Apocalypse while Andi was glad for Legends of Tomorrow season 5 this week.

Episode 76: Gender Representation in Media

Andi and Lise are super-stoked that F/F book reviewer extraordinaire Tara Scott stopped by to hang out with them as they unpack sex, gender, identity, and representation. And there is always a lot to unpack there!

Tara also highly recommends the forthcoming book (she’s a fancy reviewer, so she gets ARCs!) The Mermaid, the Witch, and the Sea, by Maggie Tokuda-Hall.

Lise offers a shout-out to a cute video game she and her wife have been playing called Terraria.

And Andi finally saw the movie Birds of Prey (and the Fantabulous Emancipation of One Harley Quinn) and yes, she loved it. (may be a bit too violent for some)

You can find Tara at The Lesbian Review and Smart Bitches, Trashy Books and at the Lesbian Talk Show, where she hosts the podcast “Les do books.”

Find LGO on Twitter! @LGOPodcast
And at the LGO website, lezgeekoutcast.com

Episode 74: Coping with COVID-19

Andi and Lise take a show to talk about how they’re coping with social distancing, anxiety, depression, and what things are serving as healthy distractions for them. Hit us up on Twitter to let us know how YOU’RE doing and what tips you might have to help others. @LGOpodcast.

Some resources you might find useful (US):
National Center for Transgender Equality: COVID-19: What Trans People Need to Know
Trans Lifeline
LGBT National Help Center
Them.us: How LGBTQ+ People can get Help and Resources during Coronavirus (includes hotlines and online mental health resources)
National LGBTQ Cancer Center: Coronavirus 2019: What LGBTQ+ People Need to Know
National Domestic Violence Hotline (okay if you’re LGBTQ+, too, to call)

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