I’m not a member of SFWA–not yet–but it’s been my goal pretty much since I knew a) it existed, and b) that I wanted to become a writer, so the latest news really makes me mad, sad, and just plain old weary.
Here are a couple links to get you up to speed, if you have no clue what I’m yammering on about: one from Mary Robinette Kowal’s site and another from E. Catherine Tobler, and from Steven Saus, a round-up with plenty of links to follow to your heart’s content. See a tally of who’s saying what, where by Jim C. Hines. Finally, another image of the cover itself is available here.
So, what can I say about all this? First, I’m very sad that this is happening now, today. Again. Still. And to an organization that I’ve always held in such esteem. It made me question the value of joining it, if and when I become qualified. Tarnished dreams, and all that. I mean, who wants to join into all that? What woman wants to become part of an organization that objectifies her, and belittles both her and her ability to work and achieve?
But. . .there’s a silver lining.
The outpouring of responses that I’ve highlighted above show me that I’m not alone. These other people, males and females, authors, editors, beginners and pros alike, all feel the same as I do: that the talking-down-to and sidelining of females, in this profession especially, is so out-of-date and ridiculous that it’s really difficult to comprehend. It shows me that, despite the problems of the SFWA (or any organization of any size), there is more good to and about it than bad.
There may be a bit of tarnish on the silver, but shining a light on it, while highlighting that flaw, helps us eradicate it. If the problems continue . . . I reserve the right to change my mind, as do we all. But for now, I’ll still dream of “Active Member, SFWA” under my name.