Regarding my resignation from the Kinky Writing Group

•September 7, 2019 • Leave a Comment

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I’m still processing the whole writer’s group resignation (on my part). I started the group as an author to help aspiring writers, but somewhere along the way, two of the members who have little writing experience and never were published prior to Scry of Lust decided without my permission or consent to change the form of my group from a moderator-led group lead by an experienced instructor, to some sort of flat-file egalitarian group with no leadership or anarchist collective belonging to “everyone” and to use this structure invalidate my personal extensive experience and professional resume,

Then, they proceeded to tone-police me using both gendered and racially oppressive tone policing statements, referring to my issuing of any orders as “dictatorship” and screaming. Other people who witnessed the rehearsal and the performance viewed these characterizations as either completely fabricated or grossly exaggerated. They clearly suggested Angry Black Woman stereotyping and were very sexist and racist characterizations.

I feel very hurt, and since they have decided they want a peer-run writing group I have elected to turn it over to them to run as a peer-lead group, rather than to go along with the fiction that it started as a peer group, and the fiction that I am their peer. I am far more experienced and am not their peer. I do not feel like dealing with the series of personal attacks they have come at me with in order to bring an end to my leadership. So I have opted out entirely. Saneism, sexism, and racism aren’t cool.

I wish them the best of luck in their new peer-lead structure, but it is dishonest and disingenuous to pretend that I am not the founder of aforementioned group. It is dishonest to pretend that I don’t have a great deal more experience in writing, publishing, editing, proofreading, and teaching / workshop creation than the people who have repeatedly challenged me do.

Part of the reason I resigned was to get away from how personal they were getting, as both of them used my arguments with Darcy to impugn my character when the arguments were regular relationship issues and not a big deal and they didn’t need to involve themselves. My relationship with Darcy is way more important than that group and I refuse to put it at risk because a dude is so petty that he wants to attack my love life in order to try to get me out of my role of leadership.

AKA this dude kept complaining that I was “yelling” at Darcy when in reality we were snipping at each other aka arguing and it was very two sided (unlike this other person’s one-sided view of it). Another person complained because I asked Darcy to leave right after the event because we were having a personal argument over something Darcy did during the show. Neither of them should have been using my arguing with my girlfriend to try to undermine me professionally. That’s sexist. Also I have every right to leave the venue personally, and every right to ask my girlfriend to discuss something with me privately outside the venue.

Anyway I have better and more important things to do with my life than to try to teach people who pretend they already know everything, to give then rides, to organize anything for them, or to babysit them while they pretend I am not actually doing anything and act like the agendas, rules, writing exercises, anthology and everything else I was the primary organizer and producer (and often creator) of  magically appeared from nowhere.

Plague Master Series – Trevor’s Got Trouble At Home

•September 3, 2019 • Leave a Comment

Plague Master Series – Trevor’s Got Trouble At Home

By H.E. Roulo

HE Roulo 2If it wasn’t bad enough that Trevor, the teenage hero of the Plague Master series, is fighting zombies, arguing with a Plague Master, and trying to discover a way to permanently cure the infected, he must also deal with the terrible conditions on his homeworld, Shailon.

Shailon is a backwater in the 5-planet system recently colonized by ships from Earth. Families on the first ship to arrive declared themselves the winners, gave themselves the titles of Founder, and have been lording it over everyone else ever since. Their estates are large, and the general population is forced into cramped towns. Unfortunately, when there is an outbreak of the Regulon Disease, which turns people into mindless undead, the Founders respond by herding the infected into the lower districts and hiring off-world mercenaries to keep them there.

Trevor never had much, and once the zombies arrive he wants to find a way to fight back. He becomes a bait-boy for the mercenaries, and runs through houses to draw out any zombies inside. Eventually, he’s forced to leave Shailon for the Sanctuary Dome where infected are sent until they change. What he discovers, is that despite the dome being filled with rejects from other planets, it is still a better place to be than his homeworld. Not so much once the dome breaks, and zombies i

HE Roulo Cover2

nvade, but he is able to bring the formula for a cure back to his homeworld.

In the second book, Plague Master: Rebel Infection, Trevor is a hero for returning home with an inoculation against the change into a zombie. However, the Founders don’t administer the vaccine equally, and Trevor quickly realizes that conditions aren’t improving. As a hero, he is a threat to the Founders power and revolution is on the horizon.

A new zombie outbreak, the intervention of a Plague Master, and the realization that the long-sought cure is starting to fail all makes Trevor’s life harder than ever. Find out more in Plague Master: Rebel Infection.

Plague Master: Sanctuary Dome is the first book of the Plague Master series. Next up in the planned trilogy is Plague Master: Rebel Infection, releasing September 2019.

 

PRAISE FOR
PLAGUE MASTER: SANCTUARY DOME

 

“A perfect mix of classic sci-fi and zombie horror. Once you start, you are hooked!”

-Jake Bible, author of Little Dead Man.

 

Sanctuary Dome is fast-paced zombie sci-fi on a prison planet of the dying and the undead.”

-Stephen North, author of Beneath the Mask

 

Read more excerpts and see behind the scenes of the PLAGUE MASTER trilogy.

Twitter: @hroulo

Facebook: www.facebook.com/heroulo

Blog: www.heatherroulo.com

Author Central: www.amazon.com/author/heatherroulo

Plague Master: Sanctuary Dome (Book 1): https://www.amazon.com/dp/B01CKAPXWW

Plague Master: Rebel Infection (Book 2): https://www.amazon.com/dp/B07WTQV6M7

 

San Francisco has an anti-Blackness problem

•August 30, 2019 • 1 Comment

writingwhileblackbackground
San Francisco’s Black population reduced by more than 50% to 6.1% from 12.7% between 1980 and 2010. In 2016 the Black population was only 5.7  Comparatively, 13.4% of the National United States population is Black.

37% of San Francisco’s homeless population are Black.  My family and I were homeless in San Francisco in late 2005 and early 2006, before we like so many Black families moved out of the City. We moved up to Vallejo, where my brother Scott still lives. My mom moved to Berkeley in 2013 where she lived out the remainder of her life. I have lived in Oakland since 2010. My brother’s older daughter moved back to San Francisco in 2011.

Black people are 7.75 as likely to be arrested in San Francisco as white people. Black women, 5.8% of San Francisco’s female population, represent 45% of the women arrested in that City.

San Francisco’s Police Department has been under investigation for racial profiling repeatedly and is currently the subject of an ACLU suit filed in October 2018 about the racial profiling. (Case No. 3:18-cv-06097)

But most San Franciscans deny the blatant anti-Blackness in that City. A condition that has progressively worsened with the rise of tech concerns.

Apologism… #WritingWhileBlack

•August 26, 2019 • Leave a Comment

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Beware of people who sit in places of privilege and constantly ask people who are disempowered for accountability, White cishet and het-passing people who are in authority and insist that marginalized people need to admit to what THEY did wrong because we “all need to be accountable”

THEY ARE APOLOGISTS.

An apologist is busy looking for ways to tell you that you have no right to protest. No right to complain. That you can’t complain. And that you have to be worried about how you asking for basic equity, human rights, or representation hurts their feelings.

Sometimes there is no representation – as in, where they literally have only white cis people in power in their organization as their entire board or most of it is white, and their management is almost all white and cis and the people who are not white and cis have roles with no actual authority

And these people are touchy as hell every time you mention it. And you have to be careful about their paper thin ego. And you have to now be asked to APOLOGIZE for rocking the boat.

APOLOGISTS think that someone else’s feelings being hurt when you mention that they hire like 95% Cis White People and/or their Management and Boards are 95% Cis White People is MORE IMPORTANT or EQUALLY IMPORTANT to the actual lack of diversity. Now we aren’t talking about the GLASS CEILING or LACK OF DIVERSITY we are talking about someone’s hurt fragile white feelings and how the marginalized people didn’t politely ask for change without offending anyone for another 80 or 38 or 31 or 27 years until they get around to any real change.

So the vested interests stay in place, we get one Black president (Token) and everyone else a White Cis Het-or-Hetpassing Male and this goes on forever and ever in the White House and everywhere else while we tell the rebels to be silent and not rock any boats because it’s rude.

It’s Back! African American Multimedia Conference

•August 20, 2019 • Leave a Comment

After 3 years writing arts and entertainment pieces for the Examiner.com as an Arts and Culture reporter for the Oakland Art Scene, I am now writing serious investigative reporting for the award-winning Black Newspaper the San Francisco Bay View Newspaper. The Examiner.com was an online extension of the Hearst newspaper owned that allowed people to report nationally from cities that didn’t have their own print edition of the Examiner. I learned how to write for an online news blog there. But the pieces I wrote were non-controversial, arts-centered, and uplifting works that centered on how creative the Bay Area is.

SF Board of Directors 1997 tech committee

I went anywhere where there were Oakland artists, including to all of the local fairs and festivals and conventions. I had to adhere to their journalistic standards and link all kinds of reference materials. To this day, I am affected by the experience.

Now I work at Search Magazine – a local neighborhood style paper like the Sunseter – writing those kinds of uplifting feel good pieces – and writing much more seriously political works for the SF BayView. Both papers are black owned, but have a multicultural editorial staff. It amazes me how much I am a part of the black writing world, from the black owned Mocha Memoirs Press, LLC that published Black Magic Women and where I do proofreading work for their horror division, to the Black Women in Horror project. I am touched and honored.

That is why it is very important to me to restart the African American Multimedia Conference in San Francisco and give back to the community once more.

black renaissance kay davey miki

Iconoclast Productions is a grassroots San Francisco Bay Area based community media arts non profit organization, producers of the African American Multimedia Conference and the Iconoclast Black Independent Film Festival. We were established March 19, 1993. Our programs included computer literacy workshops, plays, and our public access television program Stagefright, which was on Access stations in San Francisco, Vallejo, Oakland, Berkeley, Santa Monica, Los Angeles, Dayton Ohio, and New York NY from 1993 to the present, although it is only on in Vallejo as of this writing. It ran in Vallejo and Berkeley up until 2017. It was  a variety show that included community issues and local artist and entertainers. It focused on the African American community and the disabled community, including the homeless, as artists. Because our band Stagefright was a crossover multiethnic black-centered Goth band, we worked with a lot of disabled goth artists, many of whom were queer.

Black and Queer are not Trends

•August 14, 2019 • Leave a Comment
2006 with lil4Tay

Rapper Lil 4Tay and author Sumiko Saulson. Black and queer.

Black and queer
Are not just trends
Fashion or make-up
You share with your friends
You feel persecuted as a goth?
Are you for real?
The identities of the marginalized
Are not for you to steal

When they said put away
Childish things
I didn’t know they meant
Childhood friends
When achieving dreams
For your community
Means your childhood ends

When you love and you care
But there is nothing there
That can replace the fact
That you have been back and forth
And here and there with them
To find in the end
You gotta stay black

Gotta stay black,
In the face of injustice
You gotta fight back
They tell you to use
Your inside voice
And feel under attack

They don’t understand
Your motivation
And you gotta know why
When they see racism
And social injustice
They just turn a blind eye

Black and queer
Are not just trends
You appropriate for a season
Until your need for them ends
They are on you for life
With out any choice
Your skin-deep
Your soul-deep
Your kin-deep
Your voice

Debut in SF BayView Newspaper Writing While Black

•August 6, 2019 • Leave a Comment
As a Charon Dunn said, “Sumiko Saulson usually writes horror fiction, but sometimes reality is even more horrifying.” This is my debut into the world of hard-hitting journalism after 6 years of writing upbeat puff pieces praising the arts and culture scene for the Examiner.com (since 2013) and Search Magazine (since 2017), 3 years as a music critic writing for the rock magazine RockHEAD (1988-1991) and two years on my high school newspaper The Daily Bugle. I am so proud to be working for the award-winning nationally acclaimed Black Community paper the San Francisco BayView. This is my piece on the connections between a series of recent mass murders, white supremacy and certain bigoted internet forums where racists congregate.

I will also have a series on the writing convention scene called Writing While Black (about the Hugo Scandals and more) coming out in the SF BayView.