WWW Weds: Bear Shifters? Unicorn Firefighters? Hippogriffs!

A weekly meme hosted by Sam at Taking on a World of Words.

It’s been a pretty hectic few weeks for me. For one, the dude I’ve been calling my husband for like…8? years now, well we’re finally getting really married. Why did we put it off? Because it literally doesn’t matter. It’s not like divorces aren’t a thing. Getting married doesn’t make your relationship more official in some magical way.

I just started calling him my husband years ago, because I got sick of people asking me when we were going to get married. And when people find out I’ve been fibbing they get so snotty about it. If people weren’t so retarded about the idea of marriage, I wouldn’t have started fibbing to get people to shut up.

Look, I hate parties, I hate attention (well….it’s complicated….look….I know, okay, I know). I hate being around my awful family. Everything about a wedding has always sounded pretty fucking terrible to me.

But my dude’s new company won’t let him put a common-law partner on his health insurance. His previous two jobs let us do that.

So to the courthouse we go!

It’s going to be a small thing, but still required some degree of planning.

We’re just going to the city courthouse with his parents and sister. I didn’t invite any of my family members, not even my grandma, because I didn’t want to deal with the awkwardness of explaining why my mom wasn’t invited, and I didn’t want my well-meaning but boundary-crossing grandma to show up with my mom.

So just his parents and sister. Then afterwords, my dude and I are going on a sort of honeymoon/sort of family vacation with his parents, his sister, and his sister’s boyfriend. It’s nothing fancy. Just a trip to a beach town a few hours away.

In addition to that, I’m working on a post-colonial academic piece that I hope to have published (so I can continue my quest to get hired as an adjunct professor), I recently released a co-written erotic furry short with my buddy Nik as a promo piece for the furry visual novel he’s been working on, and I’ve started working on a digital writer’s convention with a team of awesome people (I promise more info to come on that very soon!).

So, lots going on over here! Despite that, I’ve managed to get a good deal of reading done.

What Did You Recently Finish Reading?

This was a cute, short sexy read. I picked it up after meeting the author in a Kindle discord. It’s demon paranormal romance, which is outside of my usual reading tastes, but I was pleasantly surprised by it. Very consensual and it has a light steam factor. Nothing too hot and heavy, but a perfectly serviceable erotica.

I hated this book. I hated it so much that I went on a livestream rant about it. Just the absolute, utter misogyny. So often in the romance genre, there’s a “slutty” character who wears too much make-up and cares too much about her appearance, and she goes after the same dude that the main character likes. I fucking hate it. Like, women really talk out both sides of their mouth when it comes to sluts. Everybody is so sex-positive, then you go to the romance genre and sexually-forward women who ain’t afraid to let a dude know she’s feeling him, are almost always the catty self-absorbed villain. It’s easy to see how these romance novelists (and the women who buy the books) actually feel about sluts.

This is a wattpad book that I read about half of before deciding to DNF. The story was interesting. It was very fun to read. What I didn’t like about the book was how every single character sounded exactly the same and had the exact same sense of humor. Instead of writing three-dimensional characters who are all different than each other, the writer used his characters as mouthpieces to show off his own sense of humor.

Despite that I probably would have kept reading, except I think this author and I have different ideas of how you should respond to people who share their opinion in your comment section. I’m not saying he was rude. I’m just saying I don’t like to be bothered with a lot of interaction when I leave a throwaway comment or two. I definitely don’t want a whole explanation in my DMs or a breakdown of which peices of advice the author will take or won’t. Like…don’t care.

I share my opinion on books because I enjoy it. I do it for me. I enjoy identifying the strengths and weaknesses of a book. It distracts me from the pain of prolonging myself out of weakness. I hate being alive and literary criticism is one of the few activities that makes me forget that for a second. I don’t believe in authorial intent, so there’s no reason for me to care why an author made a certain choice….so don’t get in my DMs and tell me.

Lastly I read the first three installments of the Tux/Edo series by CaptainCzar on furaffinity. It’s a really cute contemporary M/M romance between a tabby cat and a dog who are an established couple. They have great chemistry. They’re very sweet together, always asking for consent and checking in with each other. Plus there’s some fun exhibitionsim kinkiness with a quarantine/WFH twist.

Basically, I started reading shorts on furaffinity because Nik and I released our erotic short on furaffinity. I’m trying to get more involved in that community and learn a little more about the furry smut genre.

What Are You Currently Reading?

I know I said I hated the first book in the series. Hear me out: I bought this at the same time as the stupid bear book.

But also….Zoe Chant is REALLY on some other shit, and I might just have to keep reading her books because they are so damn weird.

Look at these:

A unicorn and a firefighter? What a Chad.

Seriously, this woman has a whole series of books where muscle-ripped firefighter men can also turn into mythical animals and it’s so fucking weird I just can’t.

And she crams some of them into the Christmas romance subgenre. I’m really not even mad at it. This is marketing brilliance.

I swear to god this is real. Look, click here if you don’t believe me.

I don’t appreciate the way Chant’s books always denigrate women who are sexually assertive and care about their appearance. I think it’s hella fucked up.

But I also can NOT get enough of the way she crams together all these subgenres. I swear she’d letting a drunk hamster choose them by knocking over a hat and falling on them.

Also, her shifter stuff is weird because it VERY MUCH has the vibe of the cozy genres (cozy romance and cozy Christmas specifically). While most shifter romance has the urban fantasy paranormal vibe, these fluffy books are more like reading one of the Icicle Falls books.

To give you an example of what I mean, let me show off another shifter book that I’m currently reading.

This is a romance between a lupine shifter and a polar bear shifter that I picked up from the library. (Eep! My library is open again!)

This book is absolutely full of lore and backstory. The stakes are high. The magic is complex. There’s even a chosen one. She has been chosen by the Goddess to become the Guardian, the shifter responsible for freeing a dying shifter’s soul from earth, otherwise their soul could be claimed as a weapon of the high fae.

Then you got Zoe Chant like….“Gertie down at Gran’s Grits and protecting the family farms and sometimes people turn into bears or hawks and ain’t that a hoot” and it’s like….kay….weird tonal choice, but I sort of dig it (Now lose the misogyny Chant and I’ll REALLY dig it).

Lastly, I’m reading ‘Shadows on the Grass’ by Isak Dinesen.

Remember the post-colonial academic piece I mentioned? Yeah, it’s for that. And I can already hear the criticism. Oh yeah yeah, woman born in the 1880s was sort of racist: Surprised Pikachu.

Except it isn’t really Dinesen I’m criticizing, but the academic response to her. And using her novels (and other ‘African Farm’ novels written by white women) I’m going to be discussing the perceived intersection of privilege of marginalization that is unique to white women, and working within a psychoanalytical framework, I’ll be explaining how this intersection creates a unique “otherness” that makes white women crave the full subjugation of the POC experience (hence Rachael Dolezal as one uncommon example and the noble savage/white savior dichotomy as a VERY common one).

Basically white women have just enough victimhood (or think they do) to feel empathetize with BIPOC individuals, but they want to shed the privileged side of their identity. Casting themselves into the role of white savior-and by extension stereotyping and dehumanizing BIPOC individuals-is one way in which they seek to do this.

Isak Dinesen lived in Africa in the 1930s. She isn’t the problem. The problem is that attitudes like hers are still pervasive today. The problem is that critical reception of her work has failed to address her racism, which borders on Eugenics at times. Still, feminist criticism positions Dinesen’s own “otherness” as the focus of inquiry.

What Do You Think You Will Read Next?

I’ve only read the first two chapters of this one. It’s another shifter romance. The lore and worldbuilding is incredibly impressive and it includes the star-crossed lovers trope, which is one of my favorite romance tropes ❤

I also plan to do some beta reading for the amazing contemporary bdsm and paranormal romance author Pixie Stormcrow.

2 thoughts on “WWW Weds: Bear Shifters? Unicorn Firefighters? Hippogriffs!

Add yours

  1. Familiar to me too! People always ask me when we are getting married with my spouce…well, don’t know… still…Even we’ve been together 16 years…I always thought that some day we will but it just haven’t happened. However life is the same…

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Twinsies ❤ Haha. Weddings/marriage aren't for everyone. I have no shade for people who want to do the whole wedding shebang, but it's never been a priority for me. Also 16 years! Wowza. Well, maybe one day you'll do something and maybe not. Let the busybodies keep asking 😛 lol

      Like

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Elizabeth Solorzano

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