So what happens now?
I’ve been on a month-long assault on political correctness and public shaming inside the horror and bizarro fiction genres. For my troubles, I’m being publicly shamed across social media and small press publisher blogs. Close friends are asking me, “are you ok? What happens now?”
I’m 100% fine. I anticipated everything that’s happening to me publicly because it’s happened dozens of times before. There would have been no need for Kevin Strange to speak out if there wasn’t a dire problem within the internet writing communities. Everything that’s happening to me on social media right now proves that I’m right.
What happens next?
What happens next is I finish writing all the books for 2017. I’m anticipating a banner year for new releases. Six brand new horror and bizarro books is my goal. We’ll see if I get there. I’ll be doing conventions again, as well. My first show is Horror Hound Cincinnati in March 2017 with many more dates to follow.
What won’t happen in 2017? If I’m right about the self-censorship running rampant through genre fiction, then my newest bizarro fiction short story collection ALL THE TOXIC WASTE FROM MY HEART won’t appear on the preliminary ballot for the Wonderland award for excellence in bizarro fiction next June or July when the ballot becomes public even though I’ve had books listed on the ballot as far back as 2012. Even though I’m the only author to ever be nominated twice in the same category in the same year.
I won’t be on the ballot not because I’ve done anything WRONG but because I’ve been critical of the genre, which is the first rule you do not break in internet writing groups. You do not bite the hand that feeds, even when your criticisms hope to IMPROVE the artistic freedoms of the authors writing in the genre in question.
If I do make it onto the ballot, I’ll be surprised. Many other authors who have spoken out against the practices of the genre fiction police have been blacklisted for far less than my month-long diatribe against the self-appointed gate keepers of our beloved bizarro fiction.
If I do make it onto the ballot, I suspect that it will be precisely BECAUSE of this public prediction that I’ll be silenced and censored for trying to save the genre from social justice and cultural Marxism.
I doubt I’ll be asked back onto the popular bizarro podcasts to discuss my point of view and the points of view of MANY authors too scared to speak out about the problems facing our community even though I’ve been a guest on these programs multiple times in the past. Once you’re marked as a bad apple, you’re a bad apple for life.
What I’d LIKE to happen now? I’d like to be invited to Bizarrocon 2017 to talk about the danger of genre censorship, of letting so-called gate keeper editors at influential small press publishing houses bully and harass authors online for expressing political and social opinions that differ from the powers that be.
I’d like an hour on the podcasts to state my case and show other writers that they have nothing to fear from being black listed by internet writing communities. They can still write books. The self-publishing world is thriving and many authors have cut ties with not only legacy publishers but the small press as well. There is life (and much more likelihood of success) outside of facebook writer groups.
I’d like to have a sit down with the BWA and discuss measures that can be taken when an author or publisher becomes the victim of public shaming and witch hunting inside of our community. After all, what exactly is the point of having these associations if not to help our authors find success and protect them from harassment from within the community?
We dive on our women like live grenades at the slightest hint of a SINGLE WHITE MALE approaching them for conversation. Can we not provide the same type of help when we see an author witch hunted online?
In other words, I’d like my voice, or the voice of someone like me, to be heard and understood by those who have the real power to create REAL change, positive change within our community so that all voices are free to express themselves without fear of prejudice or harassment for not bending to the social will of the few very vocal social justice warriors at the top of the bizarro food chain.
But that probably won’t happen. I’ll probably just be silenced like everyone else before me.