Please comment with any topic ideas you might have that you'd like to see someone propose, and please adopt any topic idea that interests you. (And, if you're not sure how to present it, check out the last post for ideas.)
Want to advertise for co-authors, co-presenters, or panelists? Feel free to do so at sirenschat, the Sirens message board, or elsewhere (and give us a link to where that is), and we'll do a roundup in a future newsletter.
For Sirens, we're really looking for the following:
- presentations on fantasy written/produced by women
- presentations on fantasy works with important women characters
- presentations on this year's theme, "warriors"
- presentations related to production of fantasy work (publishing, writing, art)
- presentations that are less directly about women in fantasy, but that provide a framework for understanding the fantasy genre in general
- presentations and demonstrations for afternoon classes
Swords and Sorcery: Historical Women Re-imagined as Warriors
Alanna, Katsa, and Brienne of Tarth: Woman as Warrior
When Borrowing from the Real World Works--and When It Doesn't
World Building for Aspiring Authors
Teaching Fantasy Workshop
Defining Fantasy for the Twenty-First Century: What We Have and Where We'd Like to Go
Must We Be Queens at the End? Fulfillment and Fantasy
She Who Must Not Be Named: Women as Forces of Evil in Fantasy Films
Campbell Didn't Have My Itinerary: The Heroine's Journey
Archmages and Witches: Women Wielding Magic
Kissing Frogs: Enlightened and...Less Enlightened Fantasy Boyfriends: Once upon a time, the boys did the fighting and the girls wore the dresses. And then the girls took up the sword, and sometimes the boys loved it, but sometimes they resented it. An examination of boyfriends in fantasy starts with Aragorn and ends with Po, perhaps his more enlightened successor.
The War Story: Leaving Ginny Behind in Deathly Hallows: Poor Ginny. She can cast a mean Bat-Bogey Hex and a killer Reductor curse, and yet, when Harry runs off to conquer the villain, she not only stays home to faithfully wait for his return, she offers him her virginity when he goes. What happened to our warrior chick?
Heaving Bosoms and Happily Ever Afters: Romance as Fantasy: Romance novels, which sell millions and millions of books a year, encourage women to escape to a land of pirates, dukes and oh-so-naughty (pre-marital) sex (in a carriage). Are they fantasy? Are they fantastical? Should we classify them alongside dragons and swords and faeries?
Killing Me Loudly: How Katsa and Katniss Changed the World: Girls have killed before, but never with quite the grace, ease and everyday complacence of Katsa and Katniss. Cashore and Collins both wrote of girls with phenomenal, unusual, perhaps inappropriate skills -- and made them wonderfully sympathetic, flawed and amazing. Come discuss how writing girls who kill has changed our world for the better.
"Off with Her Head": "Hysterical" Women in Fantasy: A common adjective hurled at women of all walks of life is "hysterical." We're frequently urged to stop behaving "hysterically" or to stop being "hysterical." Some of the most powerful female fantasy villains, from the Queen of Hearts to Harry Potter's Bellatrix, are depicted as hysterical, fraught, out-of control. Come discuss depictions of "hysterical" women in fantay literature, and whether those ladies are hysterical, or merely powerful.
Please Bite Me: Twilight and Real-World Fan Fantasy: In 2008, a young fan, in all seriousness, asked Twilight's Robert Pattinson to please bite her. (Later, as part of a publicity stunt, he would bite Tyra Banks on her talk show.) This incident was only one incident in a long line of Twilight fan fanatacism centering around Stephenie Meyer's Edward Cullen, and Pattinson, who portrayed him in the film. When book fantasy becomes real, when TwiHards and TwiMoms swoon, what's a girl to do?
Are You a Warrior in a Skirt or a Lady with a Sword: Labels, Tropes,
Appearances and Archetypes in Fantasy Fiction
Writing Physical Courtship: When Magic, Superpowers and Graces Level the
Love, Independence, Partnership: The Evolution of Romance in Fantasy
Tropes and Archetypes: Depictions We Love to Hate, and Some We Just Hate
Writing Fantasy for Teens: Responsibility Required?
Where Have All the Good Girls Gone?: Purity, Virginity and Equality in
Finally, get connected with other presenters via the Sirens message boards.