Response to J. K. Rowling on being an autistic ‘girl’ and her hatefulness.

Content Warning: J. K. Rowling, language, genetics, definitions of terms regarding trans issues, transphobia, TERF, TERF rhetoric, domestic violence, mention of rape, facts and figures about suicide, mention of suicide, suicide, hate speech on her part, screenshots of her Twitter account, menstruation, body parts, name-calling on my part

If you need this in black and white without coloured text, click here.

There are spoilers in this for her work. There may be tangents. (You kidding? It’s me, of course there are gonna be tangents.) I got emotional and slung names, I know I shouldn’t have, but omg, I feel revoltingly soiled after reading what that TERF said.

Rowling hasn’t ever been anything except, ‘oh that person who wrote those potter books?’ to me. The books didn’t hit big until I was in mid to late university, I was heavily into cosplay and hanging with my friends when I wasn’t working on human skeletons/cadavers as part of my degree work, so I just… didn’t really notice them. I had my favorite authors that I read, and she just wasn’t one of them.

I decided to read that blog post because I can. It won’t hurt me as badly as it might others in my shoes simply for the fact that Rowling was and is nothing to me. I can give my educated opinion based on both what she says and how she says it, as well as do some research into her claims.

I don’t have a horse in the race as far as my emotions about her worlds/characters go, so I’m choosing to read this and give the gist of the important bits to my readers, so they don’t have to read what I’ve been told is utter hatred.

After reading it, I can state, unequivocally, based on her words and basic google searches that she is pushing forward an agenda of hatred. She uses nothing but TERF rhetoric and ‘oh pity me’ tactics. She is dangerous, hateful, harmful, and just a downright awful human being. I hate to even share a species with someone so hateful.

I’m so, so sorry for her fans, people who really loved her world and work. I hope you can separate the work from the creator and keep some of the joy her worlds and characters gave you. She may have created it, but without you, her fans, it wouldn’t have life. YOU breathed life into her characters and worlds, and if you want to (and can) keep that, I think you should.

So. Who am I?

You can call me Kae. I have a habit of fact-checking authors on things they claim. If you’re in autism circles at all, you may recognize my name from me tearing apart TO SIRI WITH LOVE and AUTISM UNCENSORED. I’ve written for both BUSTLE and The NY OBSERVER. I’m a published author, a reviewer and I make my living as a freelance fiction editor. I’m a parent, a life partner, and a bit of a loudmouth about social justice.

I’m speaking as an autistic disabled activist, a bio-anthropologist/forensic scientist, and as a trans person. I’m trans-non-binary, I’m neither man nor woman, I’m both and neither depending on the day. My thoughts and feelings are mine. My words are based on my understanding of these concepts. I am autistic, there’s no hidden meaning behind my words, I’ve used the words I actually mean. Any twisting of them is on you, not me. Twisting words is an allistic thing. If I fuck up, please let me know as I’m truly not trying to. Email is best, as I don’t have comments on my website and no contact forms thanks to massive harassment. Kaelan.Rhywiol@gmail.com

Structure: I’ve used coloured text to highlight definitions that might be triggering, things I felt needed extra oomph, as well as her actual words. If you’re trans, I highly recommend you just read my words and avoid hers, which are in Burnt Orange. I didn’t have a horse in the race and her words still hurt me.

As far as the definitions and concepts, I’ve posted common definitions and clarification of a couple of concepts for people unfamiliar with terms used in anthropology, biology, and yes, by trans people and our allies. It’s also HERE in case you want to have it up in a different window while you read. If you’ve rarely run into these terms and concepts they can be hella confusing.

These are the definitions and concepts I have learned from others in the trans community and from advanced science classes in university. (As with all communities, there will be some who agree with me, and some who won’t. Neither autistic people nor trans people are a monolith.)

If you’re at all confused about the extreme difference between sex and gender, I suggest you read the definitions.

AGAB – Assigned Gender At Birth

AFAB – Assigned Female At Birth

AMAB – Assigned Male At Birth

Cis – you feel like your AGAB

Trans – you do not feel like your AGAB

TERF – An acronym for Trans-Exclusionary Radical Feminist: A social movement focused on excluding trans people from society. They use many methods to gull people onto their side of things with the sole purpose of eradicating any acceptance for trans people in the world.

GENDER – A socio-cultural construct often based on perceived external biological differences but also on social roles within a society, activities, and on unspoken codes and rules: IE Nail polish is only for girls, only boys wear blue (Both of which are patently untrue, men were the first to wear earrings, nail polish, and makeup, high heels, and corsets even, in renaissance Europe. It goes much further back in other cultures. It wasn’t until much later that men let women dress up in all the fancy stuff.)

A June 1918 article from the trade publication Earnshaw’s Infants’ Department said, “The generally accepted rule is pink for the boys, and blue for the girls. The reason is that pink, being a more decided and stronger color, is more suitable for the boy, while blue, which is more delicate and dainty, is prettier for the girl.” Source: Smithsonian

Words like woman, man, girl, boy, et cetera refer to gender. They have nothing to do with genetic sex, perceived biological sex, or what functions our body displays. Our genetic sex and the things our bodies do aren’t relevant to our gender. These are two separate and distinct concepts. Anthropologists and other scientists know this. It’s fact. As many people have said, Our Parts Don’t Determine Our Gender.

SEX – genetic sex on the chromosomal level. Whether someone is xy, xx, xxy, xxxx, xyy etc. and how that affects what our bodies can/can’t do. A person can look and feel like a cis male and be xxy. A person can also be a “woman” to everyone’s perception and be xyy. (Not even sex is binary, sorry nonscientists, it just isn’t, 7th-grade biology lied to you. Shocking, I know.) This is the only way in which ‘sex’ matters to anyone, and the only one it matters to is the person who is carrying those genetics, their medical team, and if they have them, their partners. For further reading on this subject here are a couple of twitter threads that make it easy to understand.

GENDER IDENTITY – What one feels inside, their own internal perception of their gender. MANY cultures from all over the world throughout recorded time have always known there’s a distinct difference between gender and perceived biological sex. Scientists in pretty much all fields know it today. It’s only in modern society that people like Rowling have their heads up their rectums about it.

PERCEIVED BIOLOGICAL SEX – What someone looks like to someone else. This is fraught territory because there are butch cis women who look masculine and there are femme looking cis men. The point being, of course, that you cannot tell what someones’ gender or genetic sex is by looking at them. It’s actually impossible.

Utterly impossible, you’d need a compound microscope to see genetic sex/chromosomal sex and I haven’t seen many of those in girls’ bathrooms or boys for that matter. As far as seeing into someone to try to figure out what their gender is? I don’t think we’ve developed telepathy and thought sensing yet, have we? So why don’t we just do the radical thing of believing people are who they say they are with regards to gender? Hmm? Peachy.

I’m a disabled activist. I’m autistic. I’m also trans non-binary, my pronouns are xie/xem/xyr.

Not that many people use them, given what I look like. I doubt I’ll ever be as androgynous as I want to be. I present as (look like) a woman, I’m not one. ‘She/her’ has ALWAYS felt like an itchy, too tight sweater, one that’s likely to cause hives. I loathed being forced to wear dresses, skirts, make-up, and ‘girly shit’ (I had some misogyny to work out) but the only reason I felt that it was ‘girly shit’ is because it was constantly being shoved down my throat. Every time I heard she/her or what is definitely a feminine first (legal/dead, don’t use it even if you know it) name. I cringed. Always.

I remember asking my mom, when I was 4, when I’d get my penis because I was sick of waiting for it. She laughed her ass off, mocked me and I never asked again. It took me until I was 39 to really understand who I am because I didn’t have the language to label it. Now I do. I had to do a lot of internal work to beat back internalized misogyny, massive feminine social indoctrination, trans discomfort, and a whole load of other crap that really isn’t relevant to this post.

Suffice it to say it took me a while to both understand and accept who I am. I’m proud of the work I’ve done to help my true me come out from under the decades of abuse I’ve experienced. My autism played a part in that, but it’s not the part J. K. Rowling wants you to believe. See, the way she talks about it in her post, we poor little autistic girls can’t possibly be trusted to understand our own genders. We need to be protected!

AS an autistic ‘girl’ and the mom of another one, all I have to say about that is if you’ve never tried to make an autistic do anything, you have no idea how very stubborn we can be. We get enough hate, just by being autistic, we’re not likely to add on the trans unless we’re dead sure we are.

Autistics, in general, tend to question everything, so, um, no, Joanne, we don’t need you to protect us poor innocent autistic girls. Fuck. Off. You do not have permission to use my and my daughter’s neurotype as a screen for your bigoted hatred.

I’m AFAB, (Assigned Female At Birth). Some boneheaded doctor looked at my crotch when I was born and told everyone I was a girl. Science knows that even perceived biological sex isn’t a binary. Trust me. I’m not a girl and never was. I’ve always been gender-fluid non-binary. I’m neither or both man and woman. Some days, because I’m fluid, I’m more femme, most days, I’m neither or I’m masc, as I’m definitely masc leaning.

So when it came to light yesterday that J.K. Rowling has once again doubled down on her awfulness against trans people, I tried to ignore it. It’s the same old song and dance from that old culturally appropriating has-been.

She’s stirred up trouble for trans and queer folks for YEARS, the queer community has known about it forever, she retroactively assigned Dumbledore as gay AFTER she wrote the books. Now… if that isn’t reaching for stuff that isn’t hers? I don’t know what is.

It’s not gay if it’s not on the page babe, and honestly, there are queer authors out here who can write it WAY better than you can retcon it. Me included. BUT now she’s getting worldwide attention for being awful to trans people. Katelyn Burns broke down Rowling’s history of transphobia for Vox last year.

So what does she do? The glory hound doubles down and hurts more people with a blog post. Including me. I don’t like her books or her worlds and I never have. I feel they glorify child abuse in an extremely disturbing way. I mean, they KILLED a scared and abused kid at the end of Fantastic Beasts, then went out for tea and it was all done with.

Like, WHAT? How is that… and this is OKAY with people? (And frankly, as an editor, I have no idea how those books got published, they’re extremely poorly written just from a technical standpoint. J.K. Rowling and E.L. James. Two rich and famous authors who can’t write worth beans.)

I’m not generally involved in trans activism for personal reasons.

I am, however, EXTREMELY involved in autistic and disabled activism. So when I heard that freaking glory hound had tried to use autistic girls as a shield for her awful beliefs and words… I knew I had to make myself read that blog post that everyone is talking about.

People don’t think autistic girls exist, did you know that? We’re unicorns. We’re gods damned myths. Except that I’m sitting here with a diagnosis of ASD, (among other things), a vagina/boobs drinking tea, and writing a blog post I don’t really want to write.

I’d rather be playing Animal Crossing.

But no. J. K. Rowling. You do NOT get to use my existence as a way to hurt trans people. There is a HIGH amount of crossover between queer and autistic communities. While I may not have spoken up about trans issues (trans, not trans activist) I absolutely will about autistic ones.

You done fucked up. Bitch.

Dear gods I don’t want to read this.

A note on structure as a reminder: I’ve put Rowling’s actual inflammatory words in BURNT ORANGE. Please don’t read those if you’re trans. You don’t need to see that. I’ve broken down what she said so people can know without having to swim through her sewage.

The blog post, if anyone wants to pollute their eyeballs with it is here. I definitely don’t recommend reading it, it’s really, incredibly painful to read. Go clean your bathroom with your tongue, it’ll be more productive and you’ll honestly probably feel better than if you read that trash. If you do read it, and it sounds logical and reasonable, then you are part of the problem. Please, please educate yourself.


She writes at first that she’s read lots and lots about trans issues. (I guarantee she hasn’t. If she has at all, they’re outdated, falsified, TERF leaning rhetoric.)

She goes on to say:

“On one occasion, I absent-mindedly ‘liked’ instead of screenshotting. That single ‘like’ was deemed evidence of wrongthink, and a persistent low level of harassment began.”

Firstly, that’s a lie. There’s been plenty of tweet threads and people proving that she’s got a long history of ‘absent-mindedly’ liking inflammatory tweets. It’s even been referred to by her publicist that it was a ‘middle-age moment’.

I’m middle-aged. I do not ‘like’ things on social media that aren’t anything I actually support. Whether we enjoy it or not, as public figures (authors are) we need to be careful what we like and retweet because a like or retweet or share from us DOES count as supporting it.

Hey, Joanne, guess what you had to do? All you had to do was say, oops, my bad. And no one would’ve said a thing to you.

Aren’t we all, in western society at least, taught that we should say we’re sorry when we fuck up? She didn’t say she was sorry. Instead, she doubled down.

She talks about willfully supporting Maya Forstater, the woman who even an Employment Court of Britain basically labeled a TERF.

Great choice in icons there, Joanne. She talks about knowing that people would hate her for supporting Forstater. Uh, yeah, J.K. people don’t like TERFs much. Shocker, huh? We don’t like Nazis either.

She whines more about the ‘social media abuse’ for fuck’s sake, this reads like a ‘poor little me, the evil trans people are out to get me’ gags.

She talks about supporting Magdalen Burns. Another known TERF. Just a lesbian one.

“to be told I was literally killing trans people with my hate, “

Have you ever been hated? I mean, truly hated for something you can’t help? I have. I am. It sucks, a lot actually. And yes. It can ACTUALLY kill. (See what I mean? She can’t write.)

“What I didn’t expect in the aftermath of my cancellation was the avalanche of emails and letters that came showering down upon me, the overwhelming majority of which were positive, grateful and supportive.”

(She needs a comma in front of that last and)

Yep. J.K. There are tons of TERFs just like you. Don’t you find that sooooo comforting? asshole. No. Suppurating, hemorrhoidal asshole.

“They’re worried about the dangers to young people, gay people and about the erosion of women’s and girl’s rights.”

(comma before the first and)

So, you… a beloved children’s author with MANY queer young people who adore you, decide to side with the TERFs. Having trouble on understanding the logic there J.K., if all you want to do is protect people.

Billionaire white woman plays the ‘oh my mental health’ card. Holy cow. Sucking hard on the social teat there, aren’t you J.K? (You can be rich and mentally ill, and rich people have more resources to get treatment.)

I’m not mocking mentally ill people. I’m mentally ill. I’m mocking the incredibly common and likely habit of white women, when called on their shit, to whine about some aspect of their mental health. Usually anxiety, cause these days, the ‘pretty’ mental illnesses are anxiety and depression.

Oh, yeah, right, she says she only returned to twitter to share a free children’s book during the pandemic.

Let’s see. She’s quite active on May 25th, and I don’t know if that’s a joke, but dang, threatening to steal people’s pets? Great look J.K. Fantastic. Peachy.

So classy, professional even. (My eyes roll any harder I’m gonna have to get up, fetch them from wherever they land when they fall out of my head, dust the damned things off and figure out how to reattach them.)

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Above: Screenshot of J.K. Rowling’s account, showing her posting and threatening to steal dogs because no one told J.K. Rowling (fucking egotist) she couldn’t on May 25th, 2020 (I *think* it’s meant to be a joke, but I don’t think ‘jokes’ about how you’re above the law are funny.)

And here she is posting in April, she posted frequently enough that Twitter found quite a bit.

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Above: Screenshot of J.K. Rowling’s account showing her posting in April


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She does seem to have been absent for February. Probably licking her pride from having people tell her she’s wrong about trans folks. Sex, biological sex, is not binary. Scientists know this. Egotist billionaire children’s writer’s who shit on their fans do not. I mean, you should see the love people send her way, and she STILL wants more attention? Disgusting.

Hell, I’d be happy to have even a small percentage of that love for me and my books. :/

Instead, she goes and beats on the trans community again when her free children’s book didn’t get enough attention to suit her.

SO. My little data-mining project into her Twitter account (I really need a shower now) proves that not only is she a TERF, she’s a fucking liar too. Great role model for kids. Fantastic.

Back to that awful blog post. I need wine.

“Immediately, activists who clearly believe themselves to be good, kind and progressive people swarmed back into my timeline, assuming a right to police my speech, accuse me of hatred, call me misogynistic slurs and, above all – as every woman involved in this debate will know – TERF.”

Nooo, Ms. Egotist. Activists didn’t swarm back into your tweets until YOU attacked TRANS PEOPLE with this awful tweet.


Screenshot of the tweet that started all of this crap up again. It’s a retweet of an opinion column: Opinion: Creating a more equal post-COVID-19 World for people who menstruate.

Rowling’s words: “People who menstruate.” I’m sure there used to be a word for those people. Someone help me out. Wumben? Wimpund? Woomud?”

She’s not only starting it all up again with that tweet, she’s WILLFULLY attacking anyone who, in her view, isn’t a woman.

Which, like, look in the mirror lady, you were born in 1965, unless you’ve discovered what the rest of us haven’t, at 54, you probably don’t menstruate either. It’s called menopause. Pretty sure you probably know what that is by now.

And I’ve just done a data dive into her account, (shudders) so no, there weren’t any activists in her replies/mentions that I saw, not for months after she popped back in early March like a bad case of head lice you just can’t get rid of. Prior to that tweet, she had the usual outpouring of love from kids and their parents who loved her free book. Lots of illustrations from those kids, her responses to them (which were kind, she was kind to kids, I’ll give her that, just not trans kids. No, no kindness for kids like I used to be.)

Then she goes on to bitch about the term TERF and mislabels its source.

“If you didn’t already know – and why should you? – ‘TERF’ is an acronym coined by trans activists, which stands for Trans-Exclusionary Radical Feminist. In practice, a huge and diverse cross-section of women are currently being called TERFs and the vast majority have never been radical feminists.” 

It was actually coined by Trans-inclusive cisgender radical feminist blogger Viv Smythe who popularized the term in 2008 as an online shorthand. (Wikipedia)

(Difference is that Smythe is a trans-inclusive blogger, not an activist. Smythe isn’t to my knowledge in that circle.)

Rowling is also incredibly wrong that there are ‘many people labeled TERFS who, waaaah, don’t deserve it’. No, Joanne, honey, you have to earn that title with your behavior. Which you most definitely have. Even if none of the rest of it were true, that ONE tweet, the one mocking people who menstruate, makes you a TERF.

Trans-Exclusionary means you exclude trans people from anything, really. Just like you, Joanne, are excluding trans women from womens’ rights, womens’ spaces, womens’ conversations, and womens’ lives.

Trans women are women. Period. Even science backs that up. A transitioning trans woman’s bones, skin, hair, body all become incredibly similar to a cis woman’s. A trans woman’s brain is more like a cis woman’s than a cis man’s EVEN BEFORE TRANSITIONING. Scientific fact. Same goes for trans men.

Woman is a GENDER IDENTITY DEFINITION. It has nothing to do with body parts and whether or not you bleed from them. Frankly, I know a couple penis owning people who menstruate, and they were born with those things, so like… what are they? Aliens?

“Speaking as a biological woman, a lot of people in positions of power really need to grow a pair (which is doubtless literally possible, according to the kind of people who argue that clownfish prove humans aren’t a dimorphic species).”

I mean, does she know for a fact she’s a ‘biological’ female? She’s had a chromosomal assay done? Wow. Interesting, she’s more committed to her TERFuckery than I thought. And she’s misused ‘literally’ again. Sigh.

Really, REALLY can’t write.

There’s also no such thing as a biological woman. That’s mixing up the definitions of two very different concepts. People may PERCEIVE her as a woman, she may perceive herself as one, which makes her Cis. Also an asshole, but a cis asshole.

Gah, I’m tired of this blog post already and I haven’t even gotten to the ‘using autistics’ part. We’re still in the ‘shitting on trans people’ part.

“So why am I doing this? Why speak up? Why not quietly do my research and keep my head down?”

She says she’s doing it because someone has to defend the poor innocent children.

No, Joanne, you’re ‘speaking up’ with your bad facts and baseless accusations and your bloody lies because you’re a damned egotistical jerk who isn’t getting enough of the attention you feel is your due. And pardon me, but no, I don’t think you’re capable of research, not after appropriating Indigenous culture for your books (AND NEVER APOLOGIZING) and this bullshit about trans gender people.

Why do I feel that way? Because I’m an ACTUAL scientific researcher. My degrees are in Bioanthropology, Forensic Chemistry, World History, and Education. Trust me, in all that, I learned how to do research and to do it well.

All Joanne here has got is her bad attitude, her prejudice about what makes a woman ‘a woman’, and way, way too much ego.

“Well, I’ve got five reasons for being worried about the new trans activism, and deciding I need to speak up.” 

(Sigh, roles eyes, trans activism isn’t new, she’s just not used to being called on her shit.)

“Firstly, I have a charitable trust that focuses on alleviating social deprivation in Scotland, with a particular emphasis on women and children. Among other things, my trust supports projects for female prisoners and for survivors of domestic and sexual abuse. I also fund medical research into MS, a disease that behaves very differently in men and women. It’s been clear to me for a while that the new trans activism is having (or is likely to have, if all its demands are met) a significant impact on many of the causes I support, because it’s pushing to erode the legal definition of sex and replace it with gender.”

Trans women’s brains are much more like a cis woman’s brains than a cis man’s. Oh, and there are sooooo many trans people who are the victims of domestic abuse, in prison, and are victims of sexual assault. If you knew anything about MS, you’d actually listen to the Doctors who would tell you that trans women are valid. Next bad point?

“The second reason is that I’m an ex-teacher and the founder of a children’s charity, which gives me an interest in both education and safeguarding. Like many others, I have deep concerns about the effect the trans rights movement is having on both.”

I’m an ex-teacher too. The only thing hurting trans kids is not being believed, not being able to express their true gender, and later, not having transition care if they need it. It’s foolish to think anyone would or even could ‘make’ a kid trans, or transition. We’re born the way we are.

All of us trans folks, but especially adolescents, already have incredibly high suicide rates, her bullshit is NOT helping.

Joanne my dear, just because you won the author lottery in a big way (we all know it’s not a meritocracy, or you definitely wouldn’t be where you are) doesn’t mean you are the be-all and end-all of things you obviously don’t understand. Just because you have money and can fund a charity… no, just no. You’re utterly HORRIBLE.

My heart bleeds for all those trans kids out there, the ones who thought maybe Harry Potter and Hogwarts had room for them, only to find out that not only does Hogwarts not have room, the author’s heart doesn’t either.

I highly recommend turning to fanfiction. There’s so much wonderful fanfic out there based in her world that you can find exactly what you need without having anything to do with her. There are also a lot of trans authors out here, we write worlds where you are welcome, wanted, and loved. Where you’ll find people similar to you having adventures and joys and happily ever afters. You’ll need to search indie and self-publishing for us because mainstream publishing hates us as much as Joanne does.

“The third is that, as a much-banned author, I’m interested in freedom of speech and have publicly defended it, even unto Donald Trump.”

You and Trump do make a pair don’t you? Both sharing scientifically disproven bullshit under the guise of caring for someone else when all you want is attention and controversy.

Shame on you, Joanne Kathleen Rowling. Shame. On. You. During the biggest Black Lives Matters worldwide revolution ever, you do this. You’re disgusting.

And again, that’s not hurt talking, I never liked her books, Hogwarts wasn’t ever this special fun place for me, I was in Uni when the books became big, so they just missed me completely. I didn’t lose anything by her being awful.

I feel so horrible for those who did. I’m so sorry my luvs, you’re VALID and her bullshit is exactly that. A steaming stream of grass-fed, medicated cow shit (grass-fed, medicated is looser, wetter, stinkier) splattered across a barn floor. Just toss some hay on that and shovel it out the door. At least cow shit has fertilization usages, her shit is just glorifying her own sad, hateful ignorance.

I can’t even imagine myself being that wealthy so it’s not jealousy either. I mean, hell, she wants to support trans people she can, I’ll happily give her my Paypal address. In the blink of an eye and the click of her finger, she could change the lives of so many trans people if she just bothered.

Most of us have paypals, kofis, many of us have GoFundMes to get out of abusive situations or get our surgeries if we need/want them. Trans creators tend to starve, wither into the unknown, while she in her mighty white rich lady ‘knowledge’ is ‘writing a crime series’ so ‘the topic of trans issues is interesting to her’.

Translation, she’s thinking of stealing a trans author’s place at the publishing table by writing a trans book.

But we all know she won’t do that. She won’t help trans people. She hates us.

Freedom of speech exists, yes. It means you get to say whatever you want unless your government forbids it, yes. It also means you get to take the consequences. Which is people like me loathing you. Knowledge that you’re hurting KIDS, as well as your fans. The people who put you where you are. Your Fans.

I’m an author too, and as I detailed in my thread here, I can’t wrap my head around hurting my fans that badly. Without our fans, we writers are nothing more than extremely odd people in torn t-shirts, messy hair, and skivvies, (if we’re feeling fancy) whispering stories to ourselves in dark rooms.

Without your fans? As an author? You’re nothing but a blowhard. And she’s doing her level best to hurt so many of her fans to stroke her outsized damned ego.

“The fourth is where things start to get truly personal. I’m concerned about the huge explosion in young women wishing to transition and also about the increasing numbers who seem to be detransitioning (returning to their original sex), because they regret taking steps that have, in some cases, altered their bodies irrevocably, and taken away their fertility. Some say they decided to transition after realising they were same-sex attracted, and that transitioning was partly driven by homophobia, either in society or in their families.”

Gods, did she pull that out of her toilet? I think she did. It’s nothing more than TERF rhetoric. Precious fertility, beautiful femininity cow crap. She talks about transition care as if people are passing around pills like at the rave parties in the ’90s.

No. That’s not how transition care works. You have to go through SO MUCH to even be able to access transition care. Psychotherapy is just part of that, it’s not something you do on a whim, like she’s painted there. The rates of people detransitioning are extremely low, because of the barriers in place to prevent whims like she’s describing. No, the ones who detransition? They’re almost always the ones who have to rely on intolerant family members for support.

Hey, Joanne, if you’re so concerned about those who have to detransition, why don’t you go to GoFundme.com and give some of your unearned wealth to those who really need it. The ones who have no choice but to sacrifice their true selves so that they can feed their bodies?

But no. We know you won’t do that either.

Oh, our fertility… boo hoo. Transition care doesn’t do that.

As if fertility is all that. JFC, everything she says is TERF rhetoric. EVERYTHING. And somehow she thinks people transition BECAUSE of homophobic family members? I mean, does she really have no idea how much more abuse trans folks suffer from that very hatred? Obviously not.

“The UK has experienced a 4400% increase in girls being referred for transitioning treatment. Autistic girls are hugely overrepresented in their numbers.”

Uh, yeah, there’s A. More people running around earth these days, and B. It’s not quite as unacceptable to be trans as it used to be, so of course, more people are going to be looking for transition care. They just stopped hiding. Duh. Same thing happened when I was a kid and it became less awful to society to be left-handed. (I was taught, violently, to write with my right hand. I’m naturally left-handed.)

As for Autistic girls, unicorns, yeah, there’s HUGE, MASSIVE overlap between queer identities and autism. There’s been a few studies done on it. No, we don’t yet know why, but as an autistic enby, one you’d call a girl, I’ll tell you it’s not because of peer pressure or because I don’t know who I am. I’ve always known who I am. I’ve always been trans. My parents did their level best to turn me into a girl because of my crotch, guess what, I’m not one!

The only confusion I’ve ever suffered about my gender identity? Was thinking I was a girl because I’d been socialized as one. So Fuck Off, Joanne, with that bullshit about autistic girls. You do not have my permission to use people like me and my daughter and so many others as a shield for your TERF actions. Absolutely not.

She mentions in glowing terms a supposed Dr. Lisa Littman who studied ‘growing numbers of youth affected by the echo chambers of social media’. She says the doctor received censure from her colleagues for spreading misinformation.

Now… um, I don’t know about you? But Peer-Reviewed Science is a thing. If that doctor’s peers said she was spreading misinformation and that she needed to be censored? That’s good enough for me and most of the general public. Not TERFs though. Not good enough for the All-Mighty Joanne here. She knows better than all the docs in the US and UK combined! We should really listen to her! Not.

“The argument of many current trans activists is that if you don’t let a gender dysphoric teenager transition, they will kill themselves.”

That’s because they do. You jizz-whistler. Here’s an article from the Human Rights Campaign with facts and figures. It’s not pretty, and guess what you flappy twat, you’ve made it worse.

Here’s one showing that puberty blockers (again, transition care is incredibly hard to get, you have to jump through a LOT of hoops to get it, especially for a kid) REDUCE suicide in trans kids.

Preventing suicide in trans people, by the Trevor Project (I’m pretty sure the Trevor project knows more about trans people than Ms. Fantastic TERF here.)

I could keep going, on, and on, and on, and on with the science. It’s not like I looked into my toilet bowl one morning, figured a particular turd looked nice and decided to smear it all across my Twitter feed like Joanne here did. No, I actually look up resources that are recent, usually peer-reviewed, and relevant.

“In an article explaining why he resigned from the Tavistock (an NHS gender clinic in England) psychiatrist Marcus Evans stated that claims that children will kill themselves if not permitted to transition do not ‘align substantially with any robust data or studies in this area. Nor do they align with the cases I have encountered over decades as a psychotherapist.’”

Bullshit. I call bullshit. I bet that guy was MADE to resign because of his bigotry. There have been MANY peer-reviewed, scientific studies on trans people, and transition care. That’s just absolute, utterly foolish, easily disprovable hogwash. A Google search would tell you that!

You see, kids. You can find support for ANY prejudice on the internet. Joanne here found hers in TERF rhetoric, discredited doctors and psychotherapists… and apparently after a bowel movement.

“The writings of young trans men reveal a group of notably sensitive and clever people.  The more of their accounts of gender dysphoria I’ve read, with their insightful descriptions of anxiety, dissociation, eating disorders, self-harm and self-hatred, the more I’ve wondered whether, if I’d been born 30 years later, I too might have tried to transition. The allure of escaping womanhood would have been huge. I struggled with severe OCD as a teenager. If I’d found community and sympathy online that I couldn’t find in my immediate environment, I believe I could have been persuaded to turn myself into the son my father had openly said he’d have preferred.”

No. No, no, no, no, no you yeasty, white-livered harpy.

Every trans person I ever met, when I was going through my own journey to acceptance, both back as a teen who never fit in ‘her’ skin and as an adult… EVERY ONE supplied information, websites, places to find more information on what it feels like to be trans. This bullshit of hers also completely erases the struggles of non-binary people and trans men!

Trans folks advised caution, to wait and sit with it to make sure it fit.

We don’t go around trying to convince others to join us like some freakish cult. Thanks for that insult you damned soggy noodle. No, I’ll leave that kind of cultish behavior to you and your TERFy friends.

It’s well known in the queer community that Tumblr especially, but also Reddit are blood-chummed feeding grounds for TERFs looking for young queers to radicalize AGAINST trans people. Including young trans people. It’s awful.

It works too, that’s the sad part. And Joanne’s self-aggrandizing chicken scratch doesn’t help that.

EVERYTHING Joanne here has said as ‘proof’? It’s TERF rhetoric. Here, don’t believe me…

How to spot TERF Ideology, from the University of Cambridge, UK.

“…although I’m also aware through extensive research that studies have consistently shown that between 60-90% of gender dysphoric teens will grow out of their dysphoria.”

Joanne dear, was it published this century? Did you forget your glasses? You’ve got the numbers backward, darling. Almost exactly backward. 60-90% of trans teens either commit suicide or attempt to commit suicide. They don’t ‘outgrow’ anything, except maybe their asshole parents who didn’t listen to them. If they don’t transition, they tend to do so in adulthood if they can.

Oh, and few of us speak to the parents who denied us who we really are. I certainly don’t.

“Being older, though, she went through a long and rigorous process of evaluation, psychotherapy and staged transformation. The current explosion of trans activism is urging a removal of almost all the robust systems through which candidates for sex reassignment were once required to pass.”

Another lie, if anything, it’s harder to access transition care now. To my knowledge, trans kids have the exact same transition schedule, if not LONGER than an adult does.

How many of these am I gonna have to debunk before I get to the autistic part? (Note; I had already passed the autistic part, she was just using us as a shield. Dehumanizing our minds and taking possession of our bodies as a way to make herself look good.)

“We’re living through the most misogynistic period I’ve experienced. Back in the 80s, I imagined that my future daughters, should I have any, would have it far better than I ever did, but between the backlash against feminism and a porn-saturated online culture, I believe things have got significantly worse for girls.”

What a bloody prude. Uh. Nope again. I have a daughter. I see what her life is like. I weigh it against everything I experienced as a kid in the 80s, yes dear, we grew up in the same decade, and no, absolutely no, this generation is far easier on girls than it was on people dubbed ‘girl’ in that time. Just the existence of so much indie porn is a sign that the world is NOT more misogynistic. Female presenting people have more freedom to express themselves in any way they want, including sexually, in this century than ever before.

You’re a fool. Joanne. A dyed in the wool fool. You’ve bought into TERF rhetoric in a big way and you’re too damned egotistical to admit you were wrong and apologize for hurting so many people.

“Everywhere, women are being told to shut up and sit down, or else.”

Yeah? Do you forget, Joanne dear? It was followed by a backhand in the ’80s. Maybe a belting with dad’s belt if we didn’t conform. Been there, done that, have the godsdamned scars to prove it. You, you… lying bitch.

“The hundreds of emails I’ve received in the last few days prove this erosion (of womanhood) concerns many others just as much.”

Sure. Sure, Joanne, when someone with your reach starts shitting out TERF rhetoric on your Twitter feed, you’re gonna get a lot of TERFs reaching out to you expressing their ‘concern’.

There are A LOT of TERFs, Joanne. You are ignorant, you’re dangerous, and I wish to gods you’d get kicked off Twitter.

“Moreover, the ‘inclusive’ language that calls female people ‘menstruators’ and ‘people with vulvas’ strikes many women as dehumanising and demeaning. I understand why trans activists consider this language to be appropriate and kind, but for those of us who’ve had degrading slurs spat at us by violent men, it’s not neutral, it’s hostile and alienating.”

Sighs forever. I’m reasonably good looking Joanne, I look like a woman, I’m not, but that hasn’t stopped the slurs, the catcalls, the sexual assaults, the rapes. Plural Joanne, Plural. Rapes. Sit with that.

I still use gender-inclusive language and you know what? It’s not only ACCURATE (or aren’t you a woman anymore you post-menopausal crab?) It keeps people from KILLING THEMSELVES.

So a bunch of biddies who never got to do anything in their lives because of sexism don’t like the terms. Sorry not sorry? I’d rather have a few people uncomfy with the changing times than see another single trans kid dead.

You weren’t much to me, I knew your name, saw the Potter movies once cause I was bored, tried to read your awful books to my kids (Kids asked me to stop by the way, I was willing to soldier on for them). Then I saw, over time, some red flags of queer hatred.

Turning Dumbledore gay only after the fact? Not even close to cool. I started to not like you much before this most recent painful mockery, Joanne, but now? I hate you. With every fiber of my being. I wish nothing good for you for the rest of your life.

For someone like you to fall into TERF rhetoric, and then to not only just… quietly believe it… (not good, but sure, you want to believe that shite and keep it to yourself? Whatever. Not on me) but to publicly, as a beloved children’s author, as a Queen’s Companion of Honour, as a billionaire, as a celebrity… my gods, just… my gods. You have no idea of the harm you’ve done and continue to do. The Peter Parker principle applies, with great power comes great responsibility. J.K. Rowling has not only abandoned that responsibility, she’s used her might to support and push forward the beliefs of an awful edge group of so-called feminists who wouldn’t know feminism if it bit them. She’s used her power to HURT.

Realistically, TERFs are quite good at making people believe them, at making all these so-called talking points of yours sound reasonable. They’re not reasonable. It’s hatred, Joanne. You’re spewing hatred on all your fans. Trans and Cis alike. My gods. You’re utterly revolting.

I have no idea how many deaths among the trans community you’ve caused with this egotistical braying, but I guarantee you there have been some. Their blood is on your soul. Pay for it forever through time as far as I’m concerned.

Onwards. I really wish I could drink wine right now. REALLY, REALLY wish I could. This is fucking painful.

This is her last “reason”

“I’ve been in the public eye now for over twenty years and have never talked publicly about being a domestic abuse and sexual assault survivor. This isn’t because I’m ashamed those things happened to me, but because they’re traumatic to revisit and remember. I also feel protective of my daughter from my first marriage. I didn’t want to claim sole ownership of a story that belongs to her, too. However, a short while ago, I asked her how she’d feel if I were publicly honest about that part of my life, and she encouraged me to go ahead.”

So what? What the honest rotating hell does your abuse have to do with you shitting on trans people and causing so much harm?

I was abused too, Joanne. I was beaten, I was sexually assaulted, I was raped as both a child and an adult. I was emotionally abused, gaslighted, harmed in just about every way a human can be harmed, and still fucking survive.

When I tell people, or when I used to tell people because I don’t anymore, about my past, about the things that happened to me… they ALL, Universally, get this look of abject horror on their faces… then they whisper, ‘how, how… are you even alive?’

I earned my unfortunate chops as far as abuse goes and no. It has nothing to do with trans people. It has nothing to do with me being trans. It has nothing to do with your hate. These are entirely separate issues that you are conflating to muddy the waters of your harmful beliefs.

I lived in domestic violence from the time I was born to the time I got away from my parents. YEARS. DECADES of abuse.

Your abuse is irrelevant to your hatred of and abuse of trans people. Period.

“I’m mentioning these things now not in an attempt to garner sympathy, but out of solidarity with the huge numbers of women who have histories like mine, who’ve been slurred as bigots for having concerns around single-sex spaces.”

I suppose I don’t count in that ‘women who have histories like mine’ crap.


Ignorant bigot at that.

Hateful, ignorant bigot.

Sigh. How many people go where they aren’t wanted?

We can tell when we’re not wanted, most of us, right? I mean, even my autistic ass gets it eventually and I utterly SUCK at social skills.

So… does any actually reasonable person think that a trans woman is going to hang around where she’s obviously not wanted? The answer is obvious, it’s a big fat No.

I can’t even get my trans women friends out of their homes half the time to meet up for coffee. (Gee, I wonder why? Massive eye-roll) You honestly think they’re gonna go pollute themselves at your biddie teas? Nope. Enh. Gameshow buzzer noise.

(I’m no longer applying reasonable to old Joanne here, TERFS have her brain in a jar somewhere. Probably behind the toilet where she gets her ideas from.)

Shit, Joanne, you really could’ve warned your readers you were gonna talk about Triggery shit regarding domestic violence. And I’m out of my anti-anxiety meds too. Great.

“If you could come inside my head and understand what I feel when I read about a trans woman dying at the hands of a violent man, you’d find solidarity and kinship.”

No. No, we wouldn’t, Joanne. Because if you can spout words like I’ve seen on your blog page and on your Twitter feed? You have no solidarity for trans people. You have no kinship to offer. You have only hatred, mockery, and nastiness.

I said I hate her already, right?

Good, cause if I hadn’t? This would’ve done it.

“On Saturday morning, I read that the Scottish government is proceeding with its controversial gender recognition plans, which will in effect mean that all a man needs to ‘become a woman’ is to say he’s one. To use a very contemporary word, I was ‘triggered’.”

Gods, she’s such an asshole.

  1. Triggered is not a contemporary word.
    1. Contemporary: Of or referring to taking place in the present
    2. Triggered was first used in medicine in 1918. (it’s a medical term Joanne, some of us mentally ill people NEED that word to describe certain issues. You using it like that threw us under the bus.) Physicians were trying to deal with figuring out ‘war neurosis’ from WW1. The etymology of Triggered.

“Ground down by the relentless attacks from trans activists on social media, when I was only there to give children feedback about pictures they’d drawn for my book under lockdown,…”

OMG you liar! I scanned your twitter feed, I saw NOTHING ahead of you posting that awful tweet about people who menstruate. Relentless attacks my right tit! Prior to that, yes you were actually being nice to children. Good for you.

I mean, you do know your Twitter feed is a matter of public record and that anyone with the skills can search through it pretty much at will, right?

“Huge numbers of women are justifiably terrified by the trans activists; I know this because so many have got in touch with me to tell their stories. They’re afraid of doxxing, of losing their jobs or their livelihoods, and of violence.”

Yeah. Joanne, that’s how they get you. TERF radicalizing action plan 101. They’re the ones doing the doxxing. They’re the ones making trans people lose their jobs. Their livelihoods. Their lives. They got you, and now you, with all your privilege and power are doing their work for them. Brava, lady. Bra-fucking-va.

I almost feel sorry for you now. But you have hurt too many people.

Arrogant, ignorant, with money and a large following. Why haven’t people de-platformed this wretch yet?

“I stand alongside the brave women and men, gay, straight and trans, who’re standing up for freedom of speech and thought, and for the rights and safety of some of the most vulnerable in our society: young gay kids, fragile teenagers,…”

Oh, you mean those young gay kids you’ve hurt? Who you’ve made choose between their community and their beloved author? Those young gay kids? (SMDH, they got her good, didn’t they?)

More TERF rhetoric, it’s damned nauseating.

“I never forget that inner complexity when I’m creating a fictional character and I certainly never forget it when it comes to trans people.”

Darling, you couldn’t write an emotionally complex character if someone sent you a starting kit with a paint by number guide, an AI, and a thesaurus.

She meanders off with more TERF rhetoric, and that’s the post.

I have not felt this unclean in a long, long time. (Whole body Shivers).

I saw nothing in that blog post that wasn’t TERF rhetoric. They got J.K. Rowling good, and the sick, sad thing is she doesn’t even know it. Or if she does, she actually believes that shite and doesn’t care who she hurts with it.

It would’ve been bad enough if she’d just quietly believed all that awfulness. In spreading it on her Twitter feed, she’s given TERFs a famous, obscenely rich, utterly ignorant tool to wield against any trans person, but especially trans kids.

And that is utterly reprehensible in so many ways.

If you’d like to help support an autistic trans writer and autistic advocate, you can become a patron here: Patreon  My patrons make my work possible. Even a dollar a month makes such a huge difference in my family’s life.

If I made you think, helped you learn, made you question, I hope you will consider sending me a tip. It took me 14 hours to write, research, and proof this piece.

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Amazon Wishlist

My Amazon Author Site; I write books with queer autistic people like me. I write in the genres of SFF, Paranormal Romance, Historical Romance, and Futuristic Romance as well as erotic vignettes.

My Etsy site: I make jewelry as an anxiety coping mechanism. Because I don’t also want to be buried in the stuff, I sell it. It’s pretty.

Please also see the twitter hashtag #KaelanRhysRarities for more recent pieces. Etsy charges me to list and maintain a listing, so I put my pieces on the hashtag first to save both me and a potential buyer money.

For further reading:

On ‘biological sex’ and why it’s bullshit (Between the (Gender) Lines: the Science of Transgender Identity by Katherine J. Wu HARVARD)

WHO: Gender and Genetics.

Sex and gender identity by Planned Parenthood

J. K. Rowling’s transphobia isn’t a surprise VOX

Eddie Redmayne criticizes J.K. Rowling over ‘transphobic’ comments

Daniel Radcliffe responds to J.K. Rowling’s tweets on gender identity: ‘Transgender women are women’

TOR: An open letter to J.K. Rowling

Doxxing, authorial behavior and consequences.

Content Warning: Bullying, Harassment, Successful Suicide Mention, Doxxing, Mention of Sex and Kink, Mention of Eating Disorder, Mention of Insomnia, Mention of Vomiting.

Recorded version, if you’d prefer to listen than to read is here.

Now that I’m a bit calmer, and the danger has been removed from the perpetrator’s website, I’ll write a bit about what’s had me in a tizzy for the past 18 hours or so.

Last night, a good friend sent me a DM (direct message) with a link to an author’s blog. Her contact page, specifically, that had a comment on it that outed my legal name and associated it with this pseudonym. The comment had been there for anyone to find since August of 2017. There were massive consequences to this, which I’ll detail later.

Now, I’ve always been scrupulously honest about using pseudos, and my reasons for why. When I made the switch from writing custom kink stories for private clients to writing for publication, a former friend who happened to be a sex worker, and knew I wrote kinky/sexy stories, advised me to use a pseudonym. That made sense to me and I didn’t have a problem with it.

I’ve never been particularly attached to my legal name (I’ve hated it *forever* I’m named after a soap opera star for gods sake and it was the MOST popular name the year I was born. I had 6 people with the exact same name in my class of 30 growing up. We had to go by our last names, like we were in the military, in elementary school.) So I chose a name I really liked and went with that (it’s also a bit of a joke, and a nod to my partner’s Welsh ancestry, very few people, mostly native Welsh speakers get the joke.)

Since coming out as trans, its also become my dead-name, I don’t even use it in real life unless I absolutely have to. The absolutely have to is legal paperwork, I just don’t use it. It has those negative connotations to it too. I can’t afford to change my name, because I’d have to change it in two countries. It’s prohibitively expensive and the process is also terrifying for me. So many gov’t offices, embassies, officials et cetera.

But seeing my legal name still hurts me. Seeing it on this author’s page, one I’d call an enemy, shocked and horrified me. Knowing it had been there for so long made me sick to my stomach. I know, it’s been there for years, why is this bothering me so much now? Right? It’s because of the consequences I mentioned earlier.

Having both my legal name and pseudo also associated with untrue, cruel rumours about me rather sucked.

A few years ago, a young woman was bullied during the lead up to PitchWars, which is a contest for authors to get a mentor and get their work in front of agents. I had nothing to do with the incident except that someone who did happened to respond to both me and the bullying victim. I was a follower of all three of the people involved. This was in my early years on Twitter, and I basically followed anyone who followed me, anyone who was a writer. I figured if you were a writer you were great people and I wanted to know you. It’s what a lot of us writers do when we first find the writing community on Twitter. I’m no longer so indiscriminate in whom I follow/become mutuals with. I can’t be. It’s too dangerous. That’s incredibly clear to me now. So clear.

Later, around the mess with ficfest, (another contest that collapsed under accusations of racism and bullying) I was accused again of having something to do with bullying the victim, who suicided later that same year. I was a ficfest mentor for all of 18 hours. A good friend of mine asked me to co-mentor with her and I jumped at the chance because I wanted to help other writers. 18 hours when I was caring for two vomiting children and coming down with the stomach bug myself because my husband was out of town. So not exactly strolling around on the internet, if you know what I mean. When I was well, I came back online to see that the organizer and some of the former ficfest mentors had bullied the person again.

I was still painted as being part of it, because I was a ficfest mentor. Because I’d wanted, naively, to help other writers and had jumped at the chance to mentor in a bigger contest.

I knew about the suicide within hours of her actions, her friend told me, but the news didn’t hit Twitter for months after and when it did it was a huge mess. Once again, because I’d reached out to the person via a private DM to offer support after the ficfest thing, I was implicated in bullying and in driving her to suicide.

Part of my life mission is to educate people on what bullying is and isn’t. I’ve done hours and hours of Master’s level coursework in education, I have a dual Masters in education and world history. I have all this information on what bullying is and how to prevent it. I was a history teacher in the states, prior to that I was a traveling sexuality educator. It was after I’d gotten out of crime scene investigation, before I became a parent and before we came to Canada. I’ve seen and prevented bullying and I’ve also been bullied most of my life. It’s not anything I would ever be part of.

My brother died from suicide, I would never in a million billion years have something to do with driving someone to make that choice. But it doesn’t stop the rumour mongers. One of the worst of whom is the YA author who had my name on her blog.

To have those two accusations constantly follow me around is particularly cruel. If they could’ve chosen things to label me with that would hurt me most it would be that.

About a year ago, or maybe a little more, I wrote an ill-timed thread on Twitter about author behavior. The thread legitimately had nothing to do with anyone in particular, but because I’d mentioned that someone had soft-blocked me just before writing it, it was associated with being an attack on that person.

Now, I will never understand how allistic people think. To *me* I was talking about authors in general, not anyone in specific, there were no names mentioned, just ‘authors’ but thanks to the same person who hosted my name on her blog for so long, (and others) I was painted as attacking a young woman of colour. This person (the one who had my name on her blog) has a long history of attacking and dragging neurodivergent and/or mentally ill people. She never, ever apologizes for it. Nor, does it seem, does she ever suffer professional consequences for it.

Attacking a young person in general, or anyone of colour is also something I would *never* do. (Aside from it being cruel and bullying and contrary to my very firm sense of honor, I have better things to do with my time, like write books, play games or stare vacantly out of the window at fog, maybe scrub the bathroom floor with a toothbrush or my tongue.)

I was subtweeted for days, called all sorts of unpleasant things and I received a lot of harassing emails about it. 10 former mutuals (two people who follow one another on social media) didn’t bother to ask me what I’d meant with my thread, they just listened to this other author and blocked me and subtweeted me, and basically made my life a living hell for over a week. Queer people I’d held virtual hands with the night Frump was elected as we all watched in horror. None of them even asked me what I’d meant with my thread, whether it was directed at someone or not, they just assumed and listened to this horrible author. People who weren’t exactly friends, (I use that word sparingly and with care) but were more than casual acquaintances.

Once I finally figured out what people thought I’d said (I mean… jesus, would it have killed someone to reach out to an autistic person and say, hey, these allistic people think you said X, maybe if you didn’t mean that you might want to clear that up?) I both privately and publicly apologized for my thread.

I still, for the life of me, don’t understand how those awful people could think my words on general authorial behavior could be associated with a young woman who hadn’t ever written a book. I mean… she hadn’t written a book? HOW COULD SHE BE AN AUTHOR THAT I WROTE A THREAD ABOUT? The illogic of it all was staggering. But that’s allistic people for you, they make no damned logical sense at all. Sorry allistics, many of you are wonderful, and I mean that, I wish you made sense to me. You just don’t.

I’m mixed-race, mentally ill, queer, autistic, and physically disabled. I’m a published author of queer romance with ownvoices characters and I also don’t lay down about abuse. I have strong opinions that I voice frequently, and I tear apart warrior autism parent’s self-aggrandizing books. I’m not bad to look at and I have a real, recent photo of myself as an AVI. I get (and I expect to get) a lot of harassment of various types including sexual harassment. I get a lot of death threats, some quite inventive.

So that’s why I use a pseudo, it’s got nothing to do with trying to hide who I am. In this industry, my legal name is an open secret anyway because it’s on any query I’ve ever sent. I stopped counting at 500 queries, so you know, a lot of people know my legal name. But most people, most industry professionals, have the decency and honor to keep it to themselves. As is done in any industry where pseudonyms are used.

To out that, to doxx me like that, to host that comment for YEARS on her blog. It’s personally reprehensible to me. Horrific even.

Someone mentioned the possibility that she didn’t know it was there. Anything is possible I suppose, but I highly freaking doubt it.

  1. It was on her contact page, and it’s fully updated to include her agent’s information. I have a fantastic memory when pain isn’t inhibiting recall. My autistic memory is telling me she didn’t get the agent until *after* August 2017. Meaning she had to have seen and approved of that comment. It was the only one on the page! Also, it had been there for years, years! The belief factor of her not knowing it was there kinda fades the longer it’s there.
  2. It was on the contact page, not buried in some random blog post. I glance over my contact/landing page frequently, once every few months, to make sure my professional contact information is up to date, most authors do.
  3. It’s a wordpress site, we all get notifications when we receive comments on our pages. It’s part of the wordpress setup and you have to physically opt out of that option. Most of us don’t bother because we actually want to hear from people about our work. We’re authors, we like to hear what people think.

This author, letting this comment stay there on her page for so long, is directly responsible for the months of harassment I received. Even if the harassment didn’t come from her directly (and I have no proof one way or the other, whether it was her or not). The harassment that eventually made me close my direct messages on Twitter to mutuals only. The harassment that made me take all contact forms (which allow messages from anonymous IP addresses) from my website. (Basically if someone fills in a contact form on a website and sends it in, it looks like it comes from the website, not a personal IP address.) So that the harassers would have to send anything to me from trackable IP addresses so the police could catch them. I had to involve the police with the level of harassment I was receiving. 8 months of death threats, threats of exposing my name, threats of exposing my partner’s and childrens’ names. Where they go to school, my home address…

All because this author had my name/pseudo right there for anyone to find. When I think about it even now it makes me cry. WHY? Why would she do that to me? Why would anyone do that to anyone?

Why does she hate me so very much that she would allow this? It’s her blog, it’s her responsibility. Legally and morally.

What have I *ever* done except try to stand up for people like me, to point out the unfairness of the way marginalized people are treated? What have I ever done that would make this author think this is even remotely okay?

I mean, I know a lot of authors’ pseudonyms and real names, I worked in publishing for several years before going freelance. It would never, ever occur to me to out someone. It would never occur to me to allow a comment outing someone on my blog. I just don’t understand why this person is so awful. I don’t, I never have.

I don’t understand why they won’t suffer professional consequences either, but as I’ve learned, I will never understand allistic people.

During the time when I was getting *at least* a harassing email every week, (often I’d get three or more) I wondered who the person was who was being free with my legal name.  Or people, it’s possible other people have something like this out there. Obviously, someone was, because the harassing emails all had my legal information. Many had my partner’s, his place of work. One even had our phone number and license plate number in it.

Do you have any idea of how terrifying that is? I’m a trans, mixed-race female presenting person. A person very similar to me was attacked just last week in the states. I have a family with minor children in it to protect. These are the consequences that this person will probably never face because of what she’s done.

And this author carelessly, or perhaps maliciously, (I’ll never know because I won’t speak to her, in fact have had her blocked since the thread/subtweeting issue) left my name where anyone could find it.

That kind of thing, those unfounded accusations and my legal name being paired together with my pseudo could’ve cost me jobs if I’d gone to search for them. It could’ve really fucked up my immigration status.

How is any of that even remotely okay?

People aren’t, and have never been, shy about telling people like me, in detail, what kinds of horrible things they will do to us and our families to ‘pay us back’ for being queer, or outspoken, or *insert whatever reason for hatred people can come up with*.

They’re not shy about actually doing those things either.

At 4am this morning, I wrote to this author’s agent, begging her to make the author take the comment down. I didn’t know what else to do except publicly out and shame the author (which is a form of cyberbullying, so I didn’t want to do that). I guess the agent must have moved swiftly, because, despite my not receiving a response, the comment has been taken down. I’m certain the author claimed innocence. A lot of allistic people do when they get called on bad behavior. We’ve all seen that. But you know, also, I’ll point you to the fact it was there for almost 2 years. Every day it was there the believability factor of innocence fades. It just does, it’s only logical.

Despite the removal, I still feel so threatened by what that author did. And I’m questioning how many of my mutuals, even people I’m close to, knew it was there and didn’t tell me?

Not being able to trust easily is so hard.

I’m still afraid, I’m still wickedly upset and crying at the drop of a hat (and I really don’t cry easy, I’ve been through too much, too much trauma, but this has just shaken me so damned much.)

To leave that kind of thing up on her contact page for so long is utterly unconscionable. But she’ll get away with it. Just like she’s gotten away with subtweeting and harassing me. Of causing me so much pain in the past. Like she’s gotten away with attacking and dragging other neurodiverse people over and over again. I’ve seen her do that multiple times.

For someone who is a so-called professional in an industry like publishing, gods, especially of books for young adults! (I tell you, I have a young adult. I would not want my young adult reading a book by someone with morals like that. I just wouldn’t, I wouldn’t allow that book into the house. I wouldn’t.) To not only allow the doxxing of a fellow author on their blog but to also leave it where anyone could find it for such a very long time… it’s personally reprehensible to me. Especially when I’m a marginalized author, it’s so dangerous. I’m terrified, angry and sickened by this author’s actions.

Although the post has been removed, it doesn’t change the damage and pain she’s caused to me. The 8 months of harassment I received, me having to contact the police, the danger my family has been in. The danger *I’ve* been in. I had someone threaten to kill my cats!! Yeah. It doesn’t change it.

Because of people like that author, and others, the rumour mongers, I will always have the stink of false rumours and cruel innuendos clinging to me. That is so unfair, I don’t deserve that.

I had a wicked panic attack last night, then I got so, so angry. I still controlled myself. I didn’t publicly out who this author is. I can and will continue to tell people who ask me privately. That is not bullying, and since she had my legal name and pseudo on her blog for almost two years, two motherfucking years!, I have no problem at all telling people who it is if they ask me privately. Email me if you want to know, or if you’re one of the few who have access to my direct messages on social media, you can ask me that way. I won’t become the bully and say it in public, though. Not unless I have to out of self-defense. What you all do with that information is up to you. I don’t advocate for following/unfollowing or blocking this person. (Because that would be bullying.)

If *you* want to unfollow/block, do it, and I’ll support you.

If *you* don’t want to unfollow/block, do that, and I’ll support you.

I make it a policy to not attempt to influence peoples interpersonal connections, it’s far too close to abusive behavior (controlling who someone is friends with is a huge abusive red flag) and I’ve had that done to me by abusive boyfriends and family members. I’ll never knowingly do that to someone else. I may warn someone, I might open the door to say here is this information if you want it, but telling them who to be friends with/not be friends with is just not something I do.

But, I understand the need to protect yourself, and the need to know you aren’t friends/associates/following someone who is capable of doing such a horrific thing as this. So yes, I’ll absolutely privately tell anyone who wants to know. What you do with that info though, you get to decide. I can’t and won’t advise you on that.

My eating disorder reared up again last night, and I’ve been doing so well! I still haven’t eaten (I’m working on it, I really am, I’m working on it).

I had a horrible night of insomnia, and honestly, I doubt I’ll ever get an apology. She’s never apologized for anything she’s done to me before, she’s most likely is not going to suffer anything for what she’s done, professionally or personally, so why the hell would she apologize to someone she obviously doesn’t consider human?

I knew, from previous encounters with her, how horrible she could be, but I never in a million years expected her to stoop so low as to allow a doxxing of me on her blog. Never.

So that’s what’s been behind all the vague angst I’ve had for the past 18 hours. I’m going to go on full hiatus from Twitter for the weekend, maybe even a week. Maybe just stay off online for a bit. I’m removing the app from my phone and tablet for a while.

It’s got nothing to do with any of my followers, you all have been wonderful, but I just need a break. I need to lock the door to my house and keep the world out for a few days. To just be around my family, people I know would never hurt me, either by doing awful things or not telling me about someone doing awful things and thereby endangering me and my family. Enabling the level of harassment I was under.

Because some people I’m close to must have known that was there. It’s illogical that they didn’t with this person being a mutual, a friend even, with many of mine. Being close friends even, with many of you… we have many of the same business associates, this industry is tiny. We know many of the same people.

That fucks me up so badly.

That they didn’t bother to tell me. That’s… rather an ouchy thing to realize. That people I’m legitimately close to would allow all that harassment of me and my family to continue to take place. Knowing the likely source of where the harassers got my name.

Ouch. So I kinda have to cope with that too.





Safe space in fiction

*Blows the dust off my blog*

It’s been a while, if you follow my Twitter you’ll know why, but if you don’t, basically life blew up and it’s taking me some time to find my bearings again.

But that’s not why I decided to blog today.

I probably should do some sort of wrap up for the past 6 months or so of hell, but that’s not this post (and I loathe *shoulds*).

No, this post is about safety in the material we read. It’s also about an author’s responsibility to their readers.

Keep in mind I’m both? A published author and a voracious, marginalized reader.

I usually read a lot of romance, because, for me, it’s safe. I know that unless it’s been mismarketed/labeled, a romance will have an HEA (Happily Ever After) at the end. No matter what hell the author puts their characters through, I’m guaranteed that at the end, the main characters will be happy enough that *I* can be happy finding another book to read.

For someone with as many mental health issues as I have, that’s bloody important.

Me and my list of mental health issues… (Gif description: Crowley from Supernatural unrolling a very long scroll/list on the beaten earth of a junkyard)



But what about the other areas of safety that so many authors, even my favorites, fail to make sure of?

I just ran heart-first into a wicked fail by one of my favorite authors. And even over an hour later and much of that spent cuddling my beloved, I’m still nauseated and wishing like hell I’d never started the reread of a series that I used to like.

For reference: CW something that should NEVER be said about mentally ill people.

There’s a thread there to my reactions and thoughts, but it boils down to one of my favorite authors making me feel so very unsafe.

Unwelcome in her worlds.

Given that she’s one of a dwindling few authors who can still suck me into a story, (I’m always on the lookout for more!) one who I’ve religiously supported by buying her new books even during my political shitstorm motivated reading hiatus of the past couple of years… well, it bloody sucks is what it does.

It hurts to know that one of my fav (former fav?) authors holds enough hatred of someone like me that she’d call me and people like me ‘wrong for lack of a better word’.

I mean… the pub date on that particular book is 2015. Why are we STILL HAVING THIS CONVERSATION?

Seriously, WHY?

There is nothing wrong with being mentally ill. There is nothing wrong with being POC, or mixed race, or queer, or fat, or disabled, or (insert marginalization here).

But you’d really think there was reading some (most?) of the major sellers in any genre you can pick.

Fiction just isn’t safe for marginalized people. I thought maybe, because Ms. Singh is marginalized herself, that I could trust her.

But that trust was just horribly broken and I’m not sure I can get it back.

This is my second reread of the Psy Changeling series. I want to still love it, but all through the series there is a definite thread of ‘if you’re mentally ill, you’re wrong’. And the author went ahead and stated it in that bit of dialogue. The character who said it, by the way, is supposed to be an empath. A really sensitive to others and their problems kind of character. Way to go with the ableism empathic person. Sigh.

Mostly, in the series, it’s shit-talk about people with ASPD (Slur: Sociopath/Psychopath) and it’s hellaciously harmful towards that particular mental illness. (I’m no expert on that, but I know people with ASPD and I’ve read up on it for my characters and like… y’all, don’t ever read that series, it’ll rip you up, you deserve better.) The depictions of ASPD in the Psy Changeling series are narrow, stereotyped to the extreme and wickedly harmful.

The first time I read this series, a couple of years ago, and that book, in particular, I was in a much better place regarding my mental health. I’d just sent out a number of full requests on my first full-length novel I thought worthy of the name, Ilavani. I was seeing modest success on my self-published works, my family was stable and we were making some little bit of extra each month, we had a home and I had a garden. I had a dog.

All of that except my tiny, weird little human family is gone now, and I’ve had to give up on querying my books to agents because I absolutely can’t take it anymore. It, along with the other shit, broke my mental health. I got lucky on one of the last four queries I sent, so I have a great publisher, and as long as they want my work and treat me well, they can keep having my work.

My debut with a publisher is here, BTW, if you like queer fiction with GOOD mental health representation. It’s own voices, the rep is real because it’s how I experience mental illness.

So to say I’m a *bit* more sensitive now than a couple of years ago to the shit-talk about mental illness in the Psy Changeling series is a little bit of an understatement.

I remember crying in joy at reading the way one of the main characters in that book is described. Zaira is mixed-race and seeing the way that expresses in ME, ON THE PAGE IN A MAJOR PUBLICATION… it made me cry tears of joy. (Just goes to show how different time periods in a person’s life can affect their enjoyment of a work of literature.)

Maybe between my stability then, and the way Ms. Singh does so damned well with the mixed-race descriptions and feelings… maybe I missed how horrible she does with mental illness?

It’s possible, I’m only human, after all.

That’s book 14 in the series, by the way, I bought all of them when I discovered Ms. Singh’s work a few years ago, when I had more of a disposable income. I’ve even purchased a bunch I haven’t read yet, which is why I’m rereading the series so I can read the new ones.

And for the most part, I can choose to ignore the shit rep and the shit talk in this series. (I’ve been hurt so much in life that things that legitimately should probably bother me just… don’t. I’m working on this with my therapist.) The characters, worldbuilding, sexy times and ROMANCE makes up for it *for me*, or it did. I’m not sure I can go back after that line though. It HURT.

It stabbed me right in the heart and punched me in the gut.

I don’t know where I want this blog entry to go now. I want to point out so many examples of lack of safety for marginalized people in modern fiction. So, so, so many…

Even among my favorite authors.

But I think I’ll just stop and say DO. FUCKING. BETTER. AUTHORS!

The information is out there. There is someone blogging or tweeting or doing video about *anything* you want to know about.

So do fucking better. Do your damned research if you’re going to have mental illness in your books (and that means more than a freaking google search or wikipedia article, it means reading real life, lived experiences of the marginalization(s) in question).

Do your freaking research into the queer community and our different IDs if you’re going to have us in your books, (oh, and don’t fucking kill us off either) figure out how to write POC WELL if you’re going to include them. Disability? Please… I can’t remember ever reading a book that had good disability rep that was ALSO mainstream. (I guess we could point to Helen Hoang’s The Kiss Quotient… but I don’t believe my autistic brain is a disability so that one is iffy for me. It’s a fantastic book BTW, if you haven’t read it DO and preorder the second one while you’re at it. It’s just as good if not better.)

I’ll end with this. Include us. But don’t USE us. Oh! And hire authenticity/sensitivity readers PLEASE. It’s kinda why we exist and do what we do… so shit like this DOESN’T harm an unsuspecting reader.

I feel horribly used right now. Emotionally beaten.

I’ll probably end up going back to the series because I’m hard up for things to read that suck me in, don’t make my editor brain scream and ALSO feature marginalized characters I can see myself in.

But the hurt will take a while to fade.

(And for what it’s worth, the PTSD rep is so authentic *to my experience of it* in Singh’s Guild Hunter series that it feels like a warm hug to me, so I have no issue with that series, I just reread it prior to Psy Changeling. It almost feels like sinking into a badly needed warm bath to see that and mixed-race rep done well in a majorly best selling series. I’ve heard bad things about the rep in the Rock Kiss series by the same author, so I haven’t and won’t read that one. It’s odd, how they’re all almost penned by different authors.)

Do better authors. So you don’t hurt your readers. Without readers? We authors wouldn’t be able to BE authors.

We’d be weirdos telling ourselves stories in the dark with coffee stained t-shirts and messy hair. Whoops… saw my reflection there, pardon my description, I’m sure it doesn’t resemble other authors AT ALL. (Go on laugh, I’m trying to be funny, damnit!)

Authorial Envy, Friendships and how to deal.

It’s a fact of life I think that anyone with a book out is going to (whether we want to or not) compare our books with the ones that big 5 publishing gives the marketing push to.

I sure do. It stinks. I hate it that I compare my books with the ones that have so much monetary backing behind the marketing that it’s so far out of my book’s league.

But how can I *not* feel envy during awards season?

Am I thrilled to see this year’s Hugo Awards going to the extremely deserving diverse authors that they went to? Absolutely! I read and loved (and voted for) a lot of those books.

But my books aren’t ever likely going to be there because people don’t even know who I am. Ninestar press, the house I’m with provides stories that are so well edited, with stunning cover art and wonderful, amazing stories that I need to read. Queer stories. But they’re a small press, and they just can’t compete financially with the corporate monsters that are Big 5 Publishing.

Even two similar authors within Big 5 publishing may have completely different experiences and suffer related issues with regards to feelings. A mid-list debut vs. a star debut for instance.

That’s bound to make any author experience envy, maybe bitterness or anger. So how do we deal with those kinds of emotions? How do we maintain friendships with authors who we’ve often known for years who may have gotten the marketing push?

1) We acknowledge them. Our feelings are valid. It does suck to know your book can’t compete. My name isn’t a household name, but other debut authors who’ve written books almost exactly the same as mine are. I’ve even worked on some of their books with them in the early stages before they got their contracts. My book isn’t well known and theirs is. Why? Their books got chosen to get the marketing push. It’s not even about quality. Corporate publishing is precisely that. Corporate I’ve read insider accounts of how books are selected for that marketing push, and it has nothing to do with quality, story, editing or anything that we reader/writer type peeps think matters in a story. I’ve worked enough in corporate to believe it too. So we need to take our pride out of the equation. It’s nothing that we did wrong, and they did right. It’s just the luck of the draw. Corporate, for whatever reason corporate had for that season, chose THAT book to push into the minds and awareness of readers through the holy power of the dollar. Both books are still good. Both authors are still (likely) great people who have worked damned hard at their craft.

2) We Accept our feelings. I’ve been in therapy off and on most of my life, and one thing my therapists have always told me to do is to accept that my feelings are real and that they’re valid. They may be yucky, messy, and uncontrollable, but they are our feelings, and the first step to dealing with these often unpleasant emotions in this business is to accept that they exist and are valid.

3) This part is important! We Do Not Act On Our Feelings! Publishing is small peeps. Lashing out at people who got the marketing push when you didn’t is shitty behavior. Don’t do it. It’s not the author’s fault their book got chosen any more than it’s your fault that yours didn’t. I’m friends with several debut authors whose books were chosen for the push. Think about what I might have done to my friends if I had lashed out about how much it hurts that my book has 17 reviews when theirs have 500 or more? It’s not their fault any more than it’s mine. It would’ve ruined the friendship, that’s for damned certain. The reason, again, that their books got that many reviews so quickly is because reviewers often get free print books from Big 5 publishers. Some reviewers REQUIRE print books before they’ll review, (which speaks to a bit of bias I’ll try to address in a future post) meaning that small press, again, can’t compete because it costs money to print the books to send to the reviewers. Big 5 presses have their own printers and storage places, most small press and self-pub use POD (print on demand). Mid-list authors with big 5 press might have a smaller allotment of ARCs that will be sent out to reviewers than are allotted to the star debut, again, it’s not the mid-listers fault any more than it’s the star debut author’s fault.

4) So. How do we maintain authorial relationships with these mixed and divided feelings? A couple of things that have worked for me that may work for you.

a. Remember that your friend might be overwhelmed at all the attention, they’re still your friend. Check up on them! Ask them if they’re okay and if they need anything!

b. If you have other friends who are in the same boat as you are, you can talk to them and share your feelings. It’s healthy to find out that many of us feel the same way, and often times, sharing the way we feel can help us not take it so hard.

c. Do NOT take your yucky emotions out on your friend. Try instead to be happy for their success. They did the same thing you did, you both wrote a book and managed to swim through the creative waters to the point of this: YOU BOTH PUBLISHED A BOOK!! Do you have any idea how many people say they want to write a book, but don’t? Who start but never finish? Try to separate the yucky emotions from the honest happiness that you DO feel for your friend. (It’s there. You might have to do some personal work to find it, but it IS there.) I know I’m utterly ecstatic for my writer friends and acquaintances when something goes right for them. My soul feels giddy for them.

d. Success in publishing can be a bright light that goes out very quickly. Sometimes a debut title that makes a big splash can be hard to live up to with the dreaded book two. Your friend might be worried about that so they might need you to be a good friend and not a jealous hell-beast from the bog of stench-envy. I have friendships with some big-name authors at this point, and every single one of them worries that their next book won’t be as well received as the last. That the previous book was their big bright splash on the map of publishing and nothing else will ever be as good. Trust me, they feel it. ALL of us feel it, no matter where in our journey and how successful or not we are. You might too if you ever get to that point. I am damned sure I’ll want my friends if I ever do get to a very high point in my career as an author.

e. I try to put myself in their shoes at every step on the road. What is my friend feeling? What would I be feeling in their place? How would I be dealing with X? What would I want from my friends if our places were reversed?

Empathy. In short. It’s about having empathy for yourself and for your friend.
Now go write your next book (and I’m going to follow my own advice and finish the sequel to my debut, Blood-Bound).

Kaelan is a non-binary author of mixed race from Upstate NY in the United States who currently lives with xyr partner of 20 years and their children in Southern Ontario, Canada. Xie is not represented by an agent.

Xyr family has three cats, a grumpy rescue chinchilla, and a betta fish. Other than writing, Xie freelances as an editor, makes jewelry and spins with a spinning wheel when xie isn’t writing or spending too much time on Twitter.

Xie is non-binary, autistic, mentally ill, and physically disabled. You can connect with Kae on the following social media platforms.

Email Kae at Kaelan.rhywiol@gmail.com

Not A Romance

Anyone in romancelandia knows that RWA has a stinky track record when it comes to diverse romance of many different varieties. (Or if you don’t, you probably could do some reading to get yourself up to date.)

Racism, homosexual hate, bisexual hate, and so many other forms of dislike and hatred that it’s exhausting to think about much less try to list them all.

I almost canceled my RWA membership this year after hearing how some of my marginalized author siblings were treated last year at the conference.

I ended up renewing it after reading a release they made about a commitment to fixing the problems. I did it because I want to be able to enter my Bloodbound (my most recent release, also polyamorous, also with autistic leads, also kinky) in the RITA next year. I don’t expect to win that either, it’s for the experience. It might final, that one is excellent enough that The Ripped Bodice chose it for display, and it’s more mainstream.

I had entered my Hugo Nominated Ilavani in the RITA awards contest for 2017. I never expected to final, that’s not why I entered.

I entered my story because I believe in it, and I have a bit of a hesitancy about putting myself and my work forward. Entering my book in a blind-judge contest was a good test of that for me.

It actually surprised me that it got some high scores, it got more high than low (lowest and highest scores are thrown out). I’ll be the first to admit that the science-fantasy aspect of Ilavani is not going to be close to everyone’s taste, nor will be the kink or the genetic engineering, or the queer content.

Going forward there are spoilers for Ilavani.

It did absolutely surprise me that one of the judges marked it very low and said it wasn’t a romance.


Everyone who enters the RITA has to judge the first round of books. (That was another reason I entered, for the experience of it.)

We have to answer these three questions and give a numerical score of something like 9.6 or 2.7.

Is the love story the main focus of the book?

Is the resolution of the romance emotionally satisfying and optimistic?

Does the entry fall within the category description?

Now for the spoilers.

Is the love story the main focus of the book?

Ilavani is a polyamorous romance with queer, mixed-race, autistic leads. Here’s the blurb (and the links to places you can learn more about it if you’re interested).

The first installment in a long-running, science fantasy series based in a queer, pagan, polyamorous, universe.

3800 years in the future.

Maëlcolm is a skilled BDSM trainer, a spy, and unfortunately, a prince.

Cameron is Maël’s older brother, titular heir to their father’s kingdom and in love with his enby bodyguard, Li.

Kat is a slave. A genetically modified being created for one purpose, and one alone. To please her masters in bed.

Los is a gifted Companion, the only thing that makes him happier than practicing his calling is loving Maël, the one man Los can’t have an official relationship with.

If Maël doesn’t give up his calling and do as the Ard Righ demands, his family loses everything.

If Cam doesn’t do what he needs to do to become worthy of the throne by the Ard Righ’s stringent standards, their family may be executed.

If Kat, autistic, touch-averse, and afraid, chooses to fight her fate, she’ll die.

When an artificial intelligence named ‘the high king’ is at the helm, the cost to human hearts may be impossible to bear.

You can buy it here, it’s serialized due to length, there are five volumes in all.

You can read the first chapter here if you’re so inclined.

Back to my point.

The two princes must save their father’s kingdom, that’s the underpinning plot of the book, which every book needs, something to drive the characters. The focus (what the story is really about) is the two polyamorous romances going on in the book, and more specifically, the formation of the younger brother’s polyamorous relationship.

Cam, the elder brother, is in love with his enby bodyguard Li. Xie can’t give him the only thing he needs, an heir. This is the tension between them, their thing to overcome. Cam falls in love with one of his breeding partners, this is another part of their journey, and a rather romantic one. I show some of the problems polyamorous relationships can have in their story.

The main character is obvious to whoever reads it. Mael is the younger brother, the one who was always indulged because he was the lucky number 13. In Ilavani he has to face the fact that due to political assassination, he’s now in direct line for the throne and it’s a race with his beloved brother Cam to see who can reproduce first. Whoever does, wears the crown, and Mael doesn’t want the crown. He’s autistic and fears he wouldn’t do well with it.

It’s a HORRIBLE time for the gray-aromantic Mael to fall in love. But that’s exactly what he does.

He falls in love with his last BDSM student, Kat, an indentured servant and a recent import to their planet. Falling in love with her makes Mael realize that he’s BEEN in love with his first student and lover Los for decades. (These peeps are pretty long-lived, they’re basically genetically created elves.)

The *entire* character journey for Mael, Kat and Los is about love. It’s about working through the problems and choices they’re confronted with by each of them being in love with the other. So please, someone explain to me exactly how this polyamorous M/M/F relationship isn’t the main focus of the book?

Did the judge even read it? My guess is that they didn’t, or they let a personal prejudice against polyamorous relationships or queer relationships get in the way of a fair score. If that’s the case then RWA *really* needs to investigate that judge and ask for explanations, which is part of the agreement we all signed when we entered our books.

I have massive issues with Christianity, and fade-to-black romances bore me to tears, (I got more than my share of both of those for my judging packet) but I still rated all the books I was sent fairly based on the laid out rules of the contest.

Given that I am not the only person whose book with a marginalized aspect or relationship structure scored low and got a *not a romance* tag, (see here, and here) I think RWA needs to take a close look.

Polyamory is the open, honest ability to love more than one person. This is my *life*. I *live* polyamory.

It’s something a lot of people live, it’s something we’re crying out for representation in our favorite genres of romance and erotic romance.

Someone who can’t accept that, who would call anything BUT a heteronormative, monogamous white man with white woman book NOT A ROMANCE… well, maybe they shouldn’t be judging a contest like the RITA?

If more than one of the five judges had said ‘not a romance’ maybe I’d question as to whether I did my job as an author well enough with that book. But the other four judges ranked it middle of the road or very high and all of them said yes to the questions.

Is the resolution of the romance emotionally satisfying and optimistic?

Ilavani is the first book of a trilogy. It’s still a romance. Each installment is going to (and in the case of Ilavani does) have an HEA (happily ever after) or an HEFN (happily enough for now). Those are the requirements of the genre. A book cannot be billed as a romance without having that. It’d be something like romantic suspense or fantasy with a strong romantic subplot, but it wouldn’t be a romance.

Romance *has* to have that HEA or HEFN. Ilavani does. At the end of Ilavani Mael begs Kat to accept him as he is, a prince, with this horrible burden he has around his neck (spoiler). He asks her to spend her life with him, he frees her. How is that *not* emotionally satisfying? How is it *not* optimistic? Kat is even plotting how to make sure the guys’ relationship stays strong. So it’s not even because the polyamorous aspect isn’t complete. It’s complete enough *for now*.

Does the entry fall within the category description?

The category class I entered for Ilavani was erotic romance. Ilavani is *the* most erotic piece I’ve ever written. It has so much character driven sex in it people have written to me to tell me it’s their favorite bedroom aide d’amour and it’s saved two marriages (that I know of).

Erotic. Check!

Romance… it’s all about the characters, Mael, Kat, Los, Cam, Li, and Mai. These are the two intertwined polyamorous relationships. This is a family of choice. This isn’t erotica (I have no problem with erotica, erotica is awesome, but it’s defined as *the sexual journey of the characters* NOT the *emotional journey of the characters*. Erotic romance is the latter. My book is about the emotional journey, of people falling in love when they shouldn’t while they are trying to save their kingdom as they know it. (While graphically boinking one another’s brains out in various kinky fashions.)

My book is definitely erotic romance.

I question the veracity of this judge’s answers. If it were just me, I wouldn’t make a stink, but with several other authors that I know of getting poor scores and/or the ‘not a romance’ tag for race or for polyamory, or for bisexuality… well. I think we can see the actual problem isn’t that our stories aren’t romances.

The actual problem is something far darker and much more disgusting.

It’s bigotry.



Bloodbound’s release is an emotional one for me.

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I have so many mixed emotions about my Debut release from a publisher.

I have books out, ones I’ve released myself. I know how to do it, but the experience of being traditionally published is so completely different from self-pubbing that I feel justified in calling BLOODBOUND my debut.

I’ve gone from frustration, to joy, to fear, to tears of joy, to terror at what people will say and think of me after reading my book to knee bending gratitude that my publisher and editor gave me the chance to get my story out there and so many other emotions that I can’t even put a name to them all.

It’s such a maelstrom of feelings.

There’s also this odd… grief… almost. With my other titles, I always have the option, if I need/want to pull them from the market or make a change if someone points out a typo or what have you. I can do that. With BLOODBOUND, I don’t have that. So it’s a lot like saying goodbye to a child I’ve birthed, grown, nurtured, disciplined and made ready for the world to see.

It’s out there now. I can’t protect it anymore, I can’t make changes to it, and I certainly can’t pull it (not that I really WANT to, that would negate the point of publishing it after all).

But there’s this odd melancholy haunting me today. It’s done. It’s finished. It is a thing complete and now I need to move on to new projects. After having BLOODBOUND front and center in my mind, off and on, since November 2016 when I started writing it. It’s an adjustment, for certain.

Moving on, in the factual sense is easy enough, I have BLOODBOUND’s sequel SOULBOUND 95% done and almost ready to send to my Critique Partners. So concentrating on that will be a good thing. It’s already past my self-imposed due date of the end of March in any case.

Emotionally though? I think it’ll take time to sink in, that my brain baby is out in the world now. That I have to say goodbye in a very real sense to that book.

There’s also a sense of hope. That BLOODBOUND will reach the readers it was written for, and maybe provide a window into what life as someone like me is like for those who don’t need it as badly.

And that’s where my ask comes in.

BLOODBOUND is traditionally published through a small press. A larger, reputable one for certain, but it doesn’t have the kind of backing a big-5 publisher can give a book if they choose to. In publishing, so much about success is predicated by marketing dollars and getting the book into the public eye. There are readers out there who will LOVE my book, who need it to see themselves on the page, but if they don’t know it exists, they can’t enjoy it.

I’d like to ask anyone who reads this, if you’ve ever learned anything from me. If you support queer people. Autistic people. Mixed-race people. Polyamorous people. Pagan people… tell people about the book. Retweet things on it, reshare on all the social media networks you’re a part of. Share its name in the fan-groups you’re part of. The book is kinky, erotic, and paranormal with vampires and shapechangers, so it’d fit in any of those groups.

If you can, please buy a copy of the book. If it’s not your kind of book, buy a copy and donate it or gift it to someone who DOES love paranormal romance. Maybe run a giveaway of the book.

If you can’t afford it, and it’s a possibility for you (or even if you can afford it, and want to go the extra step) go to your local library and ask them to order a copy of the book. That helps so much, it’ll take probably five minutes of your time to fill out the form, (and many of them are online now) but it can mean so much success for me, and it’ll help people who need that book to find it.

If you read it, please leave a review on Goodreads, Amazon, Barnes and noble and Indigo. It’s really as simple as cut and pasting your review from one place to the next, I do this all the time and it takes me less than five minutes.

Please understand a review does NOT have to be a magnum opus, it can be as simple as “I loved this book because reason.” that’s it. It helps authors so, so, soooo much.

I’m not joking when I say that reviews sell books. Aside from people reading the reviews, the number of reviews on places like Amazon decide which books get featured in their newsletter and which ones get shown to buyers browsing for books like that. Even if you didn’t like the book, or my voice wasn’t for you… please just review it. Even if you hated it, you can review it because it’ll make sure that other people aren’t getting into something they don’t want to read.

Reviewing is IMPORTANT. I can’t emphasize that enough. I really can’t.

Here’s the info for doing any and all of the above, and you have my sincerest gratitude. Now, on to SOULBOUND! (I might have to shed a few tears of goodbye for BLOODBOUND though, it’s been my companion for close to two years, saying goodbye is hard to do!)

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To buy:

I earn the most money on digital copies from the publisher, but I get the most exposure from either print or digital from Amazon, so really, purchase wherever you usually do business. There isn’t a better or worse way *for me* to have you buy my book.

If you’re thinking of getting a print copy, asking your local bookstore to order it can help a lot because oftentimes, they’ll order a second copy for shelf-stock, ensuring me two sales vs one.

Digital from the publisher

Print from Amazon

Digital from Amazon

Indigo for KOBO (digital, you’ll have to go in with the ISBN to get the store to order it, they can. If they give you a hassle, tell them it’s distributed through Ingram.)

Digital for B&N for NOOK

Print for B&N

Webbutton long Ripped Bodice

Print ISBN: 978-1-948608-91-6

Ebook ISBN: 978-1-948608-80-0

And if you want a signed copy direct from me with the swag pack (until I run out of them!) You can send me $15.99 in US funds plus exact shipping from Canadian postal code N6J 3R5 to your location, to my paypal address and I’ll send it off to you within the next couple of weeks. (As soon as I get my box of books!) Just do me a favor and send me an email telling me you’ve paid for a copy please so I can keep track? (kaelan.rhywiol@gmail.com)

If you purchased it elsewhere and want a free swag-pack, *until I run out!*

All you need to do is send me a purchase receipt from the publisher for digital or anywhere for print to the above email address (Amazon et alli have unfavorable to the author return policies on digital books, so, unfortunately, the digital purchases aren’t eligible from anywhere but the publisher, I’m sorry.) Include your address and I’ll get it out as soon as possible! If you’re worried about how to get the book from the publisher onto your Kindle, Nook or Kobo, you should be able to email them to kindle/upload them to kindle or upload them to Nook and Kobo (I don’t use those two, so don’t know if you can email them or not.)

Thank you so much for everything you do for me and people like me. It really means the world to know that people like me have a place in publishing and in your lives.




Marvel Studios Fvcked up with Infinity War… and here’s why.


Content Warning Foul Language.






Last chance… SPOILERS AHEAD. Some for Age of Ultron and other Marvel titles as well.

I’m going to preface this by saying that I don’t follow the comics. I haven’t since uni for a couple of reasons. So I’m approaching this review and my reactions to Infinity War from a MOVIE watcher’s perspective.

Superhero movies are my brain candy. They are one of the few types of movies I make sure my disabled, broke as fuck ass gets out to see in theatre. I save up for these things. It costs me a lot in time, energy, health resources, and money that I really don’t have a lot of to go see these.

I have expectations for them (and yes, I let far too much slide with regards to these movies).

I hurt like a son of a bitch yesterday, and I STILL went to see the movie. Because I really wanted to have the Marvel Movie Experience.

Boy did I not get it.

Backing up a little, I’m not much of a traditionalist for 99.9% of things in life. My husband and I never did a wedding, we don’t have a ‘song’, we’re lackadaisical about couples holidays… and still been happily married for 20+ years. To kinda give you a bit of a handle on my me. I like bending genres, reading/writing genre-busting books…

But one of the very few things I will go to the mat for are story-telling tropes and formulas.

I ripped the hell out of Rogue One because it fucked up the formula.

And that’s one of the ways Marvel Studios fucked up with Infinity War.

See, in the comics universes, there are two main leaders that most people know. DC and Marvel.

Some people like one and dislike the other, some people like both for different reasons.

I love both, for a variety of reasons.

If I want dark and gritty entertainment, with a grimdark sense of reality, I will turn to DC, because historically they have given that to me. I can COUNT on them to give that to me.

Walking into a DC movie, I know that it’s very likely a character that I like might die, it might even be the main character, or the love interest, and because I’m going into it knowing that, I’m good with it.

Walking into a Marvel movie, I know I’m going to be left on a high-point, one illustrating hope and helping me believe for a single moment in time that humanity is worth saving and that hope actually matters.

They didn’t end Infinity War on a high point. They left me no hope, which means I have NO EXCITEMENT FOR THE NEXT FILM. None.

I really don’t give a fuck about anything to do with Marvel now. (Except Deadpool 2 and if that sucks it’ll be the final nail in the coffin of my love for Marvel. Actually, if Loki ends up dead for good, with as much as Tom loves that role? That’d kill it off quicker than fire on a seedling for me too.)

Lolz, people will think I’m being dramatic. While I own the fact that I CAN be dramatic, I stopped watching Walking Dead after they killed off ONE (not both) of my favorite characters. Haven’t caught an episode since and I stuck with that show for YEARS of bad writing. I’d been a fan from first season.

When I’m done, that’s it. I’m done.

And frankly, I have no reason to go watch any other Marvel film having to do with the Avengers or any of them until and unless they fix what they fucked up. So sad for Captain Marvel… even if it’s a prequel, I’m not laying down money to see it. Not after Infinity War.

Marvel Studios has done an amazing job in the past ten years investing me in the characters they mostly freaking killed off in Infinity War.

Leaving me soured at the end of that film was a bad business decision on their part.

You can argue (and it’s been argued with me) that because they made me FEEL SOMETHING (in this case anger, irritation, annoyance, and WHAT THE ACTUAL FUCK Marvel?) then the storytelling achieved its goal.

I disagree.

Storytelling isn’t JUST about making people feel something. That’s part of it sure.

It’s not even close to all of it though.

Part of successful storytelling for series and franchise titles like the Marvel movies is MAKING THE VIEWER OR READER WANT TO COME BACK FOR MORE.

Not turning them off from ever wanting to watch anything they made again.

And that’s exactly what Infinity War did to me and many people like me.

I came home after watching IW and tried to watch one of my favorites in the Marvel universe. A comfort watch, so to speak. One I can watch over and over again, regardless. I couldn’t get through it. IW killed Marvel for me.

Because they fucked with the formula.

I knew, going into it, to expect *very bad things* from early reactions of my friends and general chatter about the movie and crowds reactions.

I didn’t expect it to make me hate Marvel Studios. That was a bit of a shock. I didn’t expect it to remove all enjoyment I have in previous titles.

Because they didn’t give me any hope at the end of IW. The bad guy got the happy ending. That’s it. I count on Marvel for hope, and they didn’t deliver.

A single flash onto how the heroes are going to fix this cock-up just before end credits could’ve saved that movie. Because it did have most of what Marvel does so well.

They didn’t do that though. They left me, (and the entire theatre I sat in) cold, dead, and mourning our favorites.

Knowing that, because there are already sequels to other Marvel franchise movies signed and filming, that something would fix it (or that all the other ones will be predated to IW), but no real knowledge ON FILM for us to cling to? No hope?

Not a good move, Marvel. Not a good move at all.

Oh and guess what, other than Deadpool 2, I’m not laying down money on ANYTHING Marvel puts out until and unless they fix the cock-up they made with IW in a way that my heart can take.

They broke my trust. They broke my heart, and those things can’t be fixed easily.

Which is WHY we pay attention to things like tropes and story-telling genres and models of entertainment.

People trust us (I’m as much of an entertainer as anyone, given that I’m making my money from writing and editing) so I KNOW how this is supposed to work.

It’s a shame Marvel didn’t. Or that they thought they were too big to fail (and hell, maybe they are). I only know that *I* a die-hard Marvel fan, am not spending more money on Marvel films barring Deadpool 2 going forward. Not unless they fix what they fucked up.

When I want a hopeful ending to a story, I’ll pick up a romance, because I’m guaranteed an HEA (Happily Ever After) because it’s a ROMANCE. (They aren’t marketed as romances unless they have an HEA.)

When I want my guts ripped out and anxiety about my characters, I’ll pick up a sci-fi or a fantasy by a favorite author.

When I want to wonder who-done-it with no way of knowing if it’ll be happily resolved, I’ll pick up a crime thriller.

When I want a who-done-it with a guaranteed HEA? I’ll pick up a paranormal romance.

In entertainment, consumers expectations HAVE to be taken into account when you’re doing anything with regards to, you know, entertainment.

If you aren’t thinking about that while you’re crafting what you hope will entertain, then you’re going about it the wrong way.

I still don’t know what the actual fuck Marvel Studios and the Russo Bros were thinking by doing that with IW.

I trusted Marvel to give me what they always have, hope. (I mean, I’m still hoping for the fast-twin character to come back from Age of Ultron, because NO ONE DIES AND STAYS DEAD IN MARVEL! That’s one of the things I love about it!)

They left that story open ENOUGH (fast healing, fast-paced scene and we didn’t actually see him dead/stay dead) that it’d be believable within the Marvel universe if he reappeared.

So there was *some* hope for that character.

In IW… they left us with NO hope. None. Except the vague knowledge that they have to fix it somehow, or all other upcoming titles will be predated to IW, which… would be extremely odd and ill thought out.

But given how badly they fucked up with IW I wouldn’t put it past them.

I trusted Marvel to give me what they always have, what I *need* from Marvel.

They failed in that trust.

Within the first five minutes, they killed off my favorite character, Loki. I knew that one was coming because I specifically asked a friend if he died (I needed to be prepared for that one).

So, I’m sitting there watching the movie, and it’s entertaining enough in the way Marvel films usually are for me. Lots of action, pretty people doing unbelievable to the laws of physics things on screen… (I’m a scientist, by all rights I should hate superhero movies JUST for the OMFG whut aspect on the physics… like I said, I give them far too much leeway.) some emotional oomph, lots of CGI, reasonably decent writing.

Writing wise, they tried to cram far too many disparate plots into one 2ish hour movie. They had too many character arcs competing for attention so NONE of the character arcs had the emotional oomph they needed.

If they wanted to do that, from a writing standpoint, and make me feel it, they needed to slow things down a bit and make the movie longer. I have no problem with long movies that have an intermission. Hell, I went to Trilogy Tuesday for LoTR (19+ hours in a movie theatre).

It could have been done, and honestly, should’ve been done.

They did a good job almost making me empathize with the megalomaniacal genocide preaching villain (which, honestly, that was VERY well done because I’m very much not for killing trillions of sentient beings with the snap of a finger).

But Thanos was the only one who got a happy ending in that film.


Then roll credits.

That… that is not the hopeful ending I need from Marvel Movies.

Now. Yes. I know that they are likely going to fix it in the sequel, which was originally titled Infinity War 2.

And it IS Marvel. People don’t stay dead in Marvel.

Which is one of the charms Marvel has for me. If I wanted a fucking DC movie, I’d’ve GONE to a DC movie.

There are a number of ways they can fix it (and I swear to gods if they don’t Marvel will be dead to me, don’t piss off your fan base peeps, it’s bad business). I’ve discussed this with friends who read the comics, and I know which one is most likely.

That friend is warning me that there will likely be a sacrifice needed for the ‘fix’. And if it is? (You’ll note, those of you who’ve seen it, that ONLY the original Avengers survived?) It’ll be one or all of the originals who has to die to replace the new ones. They’ll have to sacrifice their lives to pass on the torch to the new Avengers, and that’s how it will be.

Which will also ruin Marvel for me.

See, Marvel is not DC. Marvel heroes can retire, they can fade away, they can be referred to as ‘they had to leave for the good of their families’.

They can’t die, not and stay dead. Not if it’s gonna be Marvel, and not if it’s gonna leave viewers hopeful and wanting to come back for more.

In order to make Infinity War a good movie, other than the basic storytelling issues it had, it needed to have a flash of a way for the heroes to fix it before the end credits.

Something to leave the viewer with the hope that, ‘oh, holy shit the world is fucked but we KNOW our heroes can fix it!’

That’s what brings us back to watch the next Marvel film, and the next, and the next.

Not a sense of poignant gloom and doom and ‘wait, that’s IT? THAT’S WHERE THEY ARE LEAVING US? FOR THE YEAR OR MORE IT’S GONNA TAKE TO PUT OUT THE SEQUEL?’

So… as far as Infinity War goes? I really wish I’d skipped it.

It wasn’t worth my money, it wasn’t worth my angst, and it almost isn’t worth me writing this review.

Maybe if they’d released BOTH IW 1 and IW 2 at the same time, or within weeks of each other, they could’ve gotten away with that shite.

As it stands?


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A love letter to my autistic children-by KaelanRhy

So many of these ‘autism martyr parent’ books are positioned as a ‘love letter’ to their autistic kids.

I’m autistic, I feel love, very deeply and the way I feel about my kids, who are both also autistic, doesn’t even come close to what those people write. So. Just to put it out there (and with their express permission) this is how *I* would write a love letter to my kids.

Dear 5 and 10,

You may not know it yet, but you are the brightest, most amazing things in my life. You teach me something new almost every day. You bring me laughter, joy, deep-thought, and so many experiences that I could never enumerate them all.

Whether the ‘something new’ is something I didn’t know about myself, something I didn’t know about you, or some sort of random fact I didn’t know about dinosaurs (in your case 5) or how manga is drawn and what undertale is (in your case 10)… I know, waking up every morning that life with you two will invariably teach me something new.

I love that so much about you both.

5? I love storytime at bedtime, because we learn something new together then too, your choices for stories are usually encyclopedias of some sort, we’re working on the illustrated encyclopedia of animals with you, and the joy you express at all the new information we find out every night is a highlight of my days.

10? You’ve moved on from having us read your stories now, and it’s bittersweet in a way I think most parents probably feel. I’m so proud that the love of reading to yourself has finally bitten you, and that you’ve found fanfic and horror stories that you love all by yourself. You make me so proud on a regular basis, and I try to make sure you know that.

I do miss the days when we got to read stories to you. But hopefully, our commitment to early literacy has helped you find your own joy in learning and love of reading.

Regardless, it’s wonderful to talk to you about the kinds of books and stories you love, and even what you don’t love about them. It’s a beautiful thing for me to share with you, and I thank you for that.

One of the things I love best about both of you is that given time and support, you get to where you want to be. One of my favorite examples of this with you, 5 is that you love chocolate milk. One day, you decided you wanted to learn how to make it yourself, and after just one lesson, you were making it for everyone.

You continue to do this to this day, and it’s such a wonderful thing to see the joy in your eyes when you ask if someone else in our family would like a glass of milk.

10? Gaming with you is so much fun, I miss the days when you wanted to game only with us, but at the same time, I’m so happy that you’re finding friends of your own to game with. Those kinds of bonds and memories will be wonderful ones for you as you get older.

I know that the memories of the bullying you faced at your former school are fading, and I am so grateful for that. Even with how much it cost me personally to move, you my dear, are well worth any cost I could ever bear to have you in my life.

It’s nice, to know that you’re going to school in a safe place, where they actually have no tolerance for bullying. So many places pay lip service to that, but seeing you thrive at a school that actually backs it up is so amazing.

Even if you do hate math. It’s okay, I hate it too.

I love how thoughtful and caring both of you can be, when you’re not pulled into a special interest. When you are, I love that I need to remind you to eat, because in so many ways, you’re so much like your dad and me.

I look forward, so much, to seeing what you both will grow up to become. I hope that by then, the world is a better and safer place for autistics. And I promise both of you, even if you won’t read this until you’re adults, or maybe never…

I won’t stop fighting for you. I love you both with all of my heart and I celebrate everything that you are. Forever.

Love- Mama


Ongoing saga

In the ongoing saga of how I’m being bullied and harassed by Whitney Ellenby and her husband Keith, I’ve received yet another email, AFTER ASKING THEM TO STOP.

She has said that she’s reporting me to Twitter, Goodreads and ‘appropriate online authorities’ that *I* am in direct violation because my EMAIL tells her it’s going to be her fault when other parents hurt their kids.

My heart is doing a hummingbird impression in my chest.

How can these people think it’s okay to keep harassing me because I hated their harmful book?

Email text that I responded to her with. (I’m trying NOT to respond to them, but I NEED THEM TO STOP.)

Since I’ve posted that nowhere except my website. It violates none of those policies. Do you seriously think you’re going to manage to bully me and harass me into shutting up? You’re just making me more determined.
I have asked you, repeatedly to stop contacting me. You are now harassing me as well as bullying me.

In the interest of transparency

CONTENT WARNING mention of panic attacks, abuse of autistics, mention of email harassment, ableist language as a self-label

I reviewed a harmful book by an autistic martyr parent. It’s gone viral, so you may have heard.

Here is the review, here is the twitter thread.

When this page came across my feed, the author claiming that the book itself proves she didn’t abuse her son, I was motivated, out of stupidity I guess, to reach out through her comment section to let her know I HAD read the whole book and found it even more horrifying than the WaPo article.

She emailed me, implying that I had obtained the book illegally.

In the interest of transparency, and honesty, I’m sharing all of the text I have sent to this woman, and her husband.

These are my words, so I’m allowed to share them. I would DEARLY love to share the emails both she and her husband have since sent to me, because oh my dear gods they have me in tears and a panic attack. Both last night, and again this morning.

Suffice to say that they implied I’d gotten the book illegally, that I didn’t actually read the book, that I should REREAD that travesty, that I said I knew their son better than they did.

Then I just got one from the husband claiming that *I* a confirmed autistic am OBVIOUSLY not autistic, that I am probably a Russian internet troll bent on hurting good people like them.

So. Before I go close myself in the bathroom and rock myself calm. Here is the text I sent via the author’s contact section on her website.

What I sent to Ellenby via her contact form on her website in response to her defense of the WaPo article.

Oh? I’ve read the whole book now. Your book paints you as JUST as abusive if not worse than that article described. There were times in the book that you admitted to wanting to give your son a tranquilizer, which you had on HAND to go to a birthday party.

You really need to pull that book. It’s not out yet, so you still have a chance to repair this damage before it’s totally done. It’s harmful to the autistic community and it’s incredibly harmful to your son.

People, autistic people are already reading it and being harmed by it. I’m one of them.

Parents of autistic kids are going to read it and think that’s the best way to do things!! It’s not. It’s not even CLOSE.

Please rethink the massive amount of damage you can and are doing.

You’re wrong. You are VERY wrong.

These kinds of books need to be stopped.

You said you didn’t want to write another autism parenting book, you failed so hard on that. The only thing you did better? Was to insult autistics and provide graphic accounts of abuse of the disabled.

I wish you the best of luck, I think you’re actually a rather talented author if you actually wrote something you knew anything about. You so obviously DO NOT understand autism. Not if you could write those things. You just don’t.

By the way? You read as autistic to me. Female autistics don’t show the same signs, and we’re JUST as common as male autistics. The data and research is badly skewed.

You and I aren’t far apart in age, you wouldn’t have been diagnosed at a young age any more than I was.

Please… Please pull the book. You’re doing untold amounts of harm.

I don’t want contact with you, after reading that book I don’t much like you. But I think you need to know that people HAVE read the book, and they feel JUST the same as after reading that article.

That book HURTS people. Autistic people, like your son. Like me. Like my children, like many of my friends.

It’s not going to get better.

And here is the text of the email I stupidly responded to her with. My only defense is that it riled me to have it implied that I illegally obtained a book when I got it from NetGalley and the publisher.

If someone knows if I’m legally allowed to share the text of the emails they sent me, please let me know.

With as much grace as I’m capable of showing to someone who would hurt a child as much as you have, let me explain some things as politely as I possibly can.
I received a copy of your book from NetGalley and your publicity firm. I requested it after seeing that bloody horrible article in WaPo. I’m autistic, and the mother of autistics, and I am SO SICK of autism parents writing like they have a clue about what they’re talking about, because honestly, most of you don’t. I review books like yours, HOPING one of you is going to prove me wrong. I mean, I actively HOPE one of you is a decent person. So far? None of you have been. I reviewed TO SIRI WITH LOVE and have been on Bustle and in the NY Observer because of my work on it. I imagine my words will be picked up about this book too, I’d be very surprised if they weren’t. I’m a reasonably well known autistic advocate in online circles.
I’ll attach a screenshot of the letter from your publicity group at the end of this email, since you seem to be implying I didn’t come by the book legitimately.
Look, I get it that you’re a new author. I’m not. I work in publishing, the way this works is that ARCs (Advanced Readers Copies) are put out from the publisher around a month in advance, Netgalley and Edelweiss are the most common places to ask for a copy. We reviewers can also email the publisher to ask for a copy of the book. The idea is to drum up publicity for the book, in hopes that the reviews will be positive. The deal is that we reviewers provide an HONEST review, which frankly you aren’t going to like because it’s not favorable, in exchange for a free copy of the book.
Now, using your own methods… (Note, she numbered her demands that I provide quotes from her own book, I don’t know why, to prove I’d actually read it maybe?)
1) Do not talk down to me, I’m autistic, I’m not stupid.
2) I’m not wading through that filth you call a book again to get you exact quotes. It’s bad enough I actually read the whole thing once, I will certainly never reread it. And if you doubt I did? I invite you to take a look at my live-tweeting of it. https://twitter.com/KaelanRhy/status/969089091051569152 I’ve quoted you there. A lot. Properly, as I am actually allowed to quote words from books as long as I source the book/author. I’ve also given my educated, and sometimes salty opinion of what I thought of your words. Since you seem to need a reminder of the words YOU actually wrote… It was right before the birthday party, you said something along the lines of seriously considering giving Zack a sliver of tranquilizer before the party. You said you’d given it to him several times before and it had relaxed him.
3) I have no issue with autistics using anti-anxieties, nor allistics for that matter. If the doc prescribed them to Zack, then maybe he needed them. I don’t honestly know, nor do I really care. How you can possibly think I’m insulting my own people by being upset that you threatened to drug your son into compliance for a birthday party is beyond me. Honestly, that’s how it read. It really did. I’m not the only person to have thought so. There are currently at least two other autistics I know of reading and tweeting, unfavorably, about your book.
4) As far as intent goes, isn’t there something you lawyers love to say? Something to do with mens rea? I’m a historian and a teacher, not a lawyer. Intent does not equal result. The intent behind your book may have been good. I don’t know you, & don’t really want to. The result is OVERWHELMINGLY that you ARE hurting autistic people. You have hurt me. I’ve been crying, off and on for two days as I read that damned book. I’m still awake at 2 am my time, often glancing in at my children, who are both autistic, and wondering how the hell someone like you could publish those cruel and often nasty things about a child like them.
Honestly, how could you? How? Do you not see what those words will DO to your children when they read that book? If you don’t? I could tell you, but I highly doubt, from the tone of your message that you’re even close to listening to someone you deem as less intelligent and less worthy than you.
5) Stop with the PFL please. Autistics, by and large, HATE IT. It demeans us. If you knew ANYTHING about autism, you’d know that. Same as you’d know the bloody difference between a meltdown and a tantrum. They aren’t the same thing. Do you have any idea what a vibrant community we have online? I doubt it.
6) I still can’t believe, even if you don’t accept that your book will and already has harmed autistic people, that you CAN’T see how much those words will harm your son. I don’t understand that.
7) A thorough reading (she said that a thorough and accurate reading of her book would prove her point, as if I *hadn’t* done so) of your book made me throw up. It made me almost meltdown, that a person like you could be at all involved with autistic people, and are likely autistic yourself… it sends chills up my spine and makes me physically ill. It really does. I have no idea the sheer amount of harm you are doing with your ambassador’s group, and because you so badly misunderstand autism? You don’t either. I think it’s a great idea, but do you employ autistic people to help you? Do you know that our rates of unemployment are around 85% regardless of how well educated we are? Do you have any idea how close to poverty most of us live? Do you care?
8) An accurate reading of your book makes it quite clear that you hate your son and prefer your daughter. It makes it QUITE clear that you do not understand autism. For gods sake, you use PFL, refer to meltdowns as tantrums and quote crap from freaking auti$m $peaks. You seem to only understand the lies that Auti$m $peaks spouts, and people like Suskind. Do you realize that almost everyone in the autistic community thinks he’s a joke, or a fraud? There are some few allistic people who write about us that we like. It’s because they listen. He is not one of them. You will not be either if you go on to publish this book.
9) Do not besmirch my honesty or integrity. If I say I’ve read your book? I have. From page one to the very last page.
10) You can’t control how people will view your book, how they will read it, and you saying you’re sorry for how it affected me while at the same time telling me I misunderstood it smacks of so much arrogance. You really won’t get far in publishing, at least with the author side of things, with that attitude. The autistic community is HUGE online, especially on Twitter. Telling us we’re wrong for our very valid interpretation and feelings about your book? It’s really not a good look. You not being able to control how people will view your words is the risk you take as an author. I believe your intent was good, but your result failed. Badly.
11) I’m not usually the type to talk to the authors I review, I’m not even sure why I did or am. Perhaps I’m truly hoping you’ll listen and pull the book before it causes even more damage. Right this second I have autistics telling me they’re having panic attacks and flashbacks to their own abuse, just by reading my quoted words. They haven’t even read some of the worst stuff in the book! I have. THAT is the kind of harm I’m talking about. If you read my tweet threads, read the comments replying to it too.
12) Yes, you do make it clear that your harmful methods, which are absolutely abusive, are your idea alone and against medical advice. But the fact that you make it seem like they worked completely for Zack (you do realize that later in life he’s likely to suffer MASSIVE ptsd from that, right? MANY of us do) are going to have a clear result. What exactly do you think desperate parents who don’t understand autism, who believe it’s a horrible, disfiguring disability that truncates families and reduces enjoyment of life… all of the very nasty things you said in your book… what do you think they’re going to DO when they read that? They’re going to torture their kids in just the same way you tortured yours. And the outcome won’t always be as positive. So it worked for Zack. I’m happy for you both, there are OTHER better methods that your book doesn’t even mention. Those desperate families are going to harm their kids, and it WILL be your fault. It may not be legally anything to do with you, but morally? It’s on you. You can’t escape that. I think that’s probably why I said something because the book doesn’t pub for another month or so. You DO still have time to undo this. We, as authors, have a deep and abiding moral responsibility to make sure our words don’t harm anyone or cause someone to harm others. If it’s pointed out to us that they do? The right answer is to apologize and repair, if you can, the harm you’ve done. Period. I take my responsibility as an author of touchy subjects VERY seriously. It’s totally up to you how you take yours.
13) You definitely implied, if not outright claimed, that you’re an expert on Autism several times throughout your book, and no, I’m not wading through it again to find the quotations. I’m sure you’ve got a copy of it, you can do a word search yourself. You claimed to be a scientist once too. Also…did you NOT write your bio for Amazon? We authors usually provide the text for those. Here… let me cut and paste it below to make it absolutely clear that I’ve actually read it. Since you doubt my honesty so much.
Of course, you have a right to speak for yourself and share your story and your viewpoint. You also have the right and responsibility to bear the burden of the resulting harm. I just wanted you to know how very harmful I and many in the autistic community ALREADY find your book. Once it publishes? You have no control anymore. And you very likely WILL be taken to the cleaners. Diversity advocates on Twitter are ALREADY calling for it to be boycotted.
Then again, books like yours get all sorts of accolades and it took me forever to find a decent publisher for my work. I doubt that washington post will even bother to print my review or what I’ll write up to send to them about your book. I don’t have connections you see, and I’m autistic. I’m out and proud about that, so to most people, my opinion doesn’t matter. Because I’m stupid.
Books like yours don’t help that, you know.
As an aside, I can’t believe that you’re an author and not on Twitter. I really can’t believe it. The writing community on there is almost as rich and varied as the autistic one.
Now. I’m tired, I’m still hurting beyond belief at reading your book, and I’m going to try to go to sleep. I very STRONGLY urge you to pull this book. You have no idea the amount of pain you’ve already caused. I’ve pasted the promised proof below.
I think it’s best we don’t speak again.

Pasted bio from Amazon, I bolded the parts where it claims she’s an expert.

About the Author

Whitney Ellenby is a former US Department of Justice, Disability Rights attorney whose writings have been published in The Washington Post, a law review periodical, and the U.S. DOJ website. She is the author of “Divinity vs. Discrimination: Curtailing the Divine Reach of Church Authority,” Golden Gate University Law Review (1996)), as well as an amicus brief on behalf of the U.S. DOJ Disability Rights Division regarding discrimination against mobility-impaired individuals in violation of the Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA). She is the proud parent of a son with Autism and founder of “Autism Ambassadors,” a charitable venture through which she runs exclusive recreational events for over 600 families impacted by Autism in the Washington, DC/Maryland area, including a Sensory-Friendly showing of the world-famous “Gazillion Bubbles Show.” She is an expert on Autism and has testified before the Maryland Senate on disability-related issues, is a member of the Developmental Disabilities Advisory Council for Montgomery County, MD and serves on the University of Maryland Autism Spectrum Disorder Advisory Board. Whitney’s expertise is steeped in her extensive disability law background, personal experience with her own son, and over 10 years of serving children, teens and adults with Autism of all ages through her “Autism Ambassador” events. Her monthly “Ambassador events” have been featured in local t.v. news, The Washington Post, Bethesda Magazine, and The Bethesda Gazette. Whitney was most recently honored with an “Autism Awareness Proclamation” and “Community Leader” award for her advocacy and dedication to the disability community of Maryland. She has what she describes as a “healthy obsession” with all things Autism.

I then pasted a screenshot of the email I received from her publicity firm. I can’t seem to figure out, as shaken as I am, how to paste that here. I shared it with her to prove where I’d gotten her book, since she made it seem in her email that she highly doubted I’d received a legitimate copy or even read it.
I woke up this morning to a letter in my email from her husband, of all people. He was defending his wife, telling me the book was beautiful and defending their treatment of their son. This is the text I sent back to him.

The very fact that you use functioning labels means you have very little idea of what it means to be autistic. And as far as I and many other autistics are concerned? Have no business working with us. I never said that I knew Zack, in fact, I said that I didn’t. I don’t want to know any of you. I certainly do not want to see any of your names in my inbox again.
Assuming that because I type well and communicate well with words on a screen means that I cope well with all aspects of life in an allistic world again proves that you have no idea what it means to be autistic.
Was I condescending? Possibly, it wasn’t my intent, any more than it was your or your wife’s intent to harm, what, at this point, is thousands of autistics. It will be more when that book comes out. She implied that I may have gotten the book illegally. I tried, in my very blunt, autistic way, to explain how this business works.
Were your actions and inactions abusive to your son? They certainly read that way. Not just to me, but to the thousands of other autistics who have read my review threads, to obviously, given the defensive tone on your wife’s website MANY people who read the WaPo article as well. Your intent and your love for him does not matter. It really doesn’t. ACTION is what matters, and those ACTIONS were abusive. ABA itself is deplored as being abusive, most autistics wouldn’t use it on a dog, you know. In fact, if those methods themselves were used on dogs, the person doing them would be reported to animal control.
If Zack is around 16? He won’t be showing PTSD from that yet. We usually don’t because we internalize it. It usually hits sometime in our 20s or 30s. ABA alone causes it, the rest of the things you guys did to your son? Regardless of your intent? It will only exacerbate it.
In fact, ABA breaks child labor laws, but because it’s ‘therapy’ it’s okay.
Your wife’s ‘beautiful’ book is going to harm so many more autistic kids. Desperate parents are going to do EXACTLY as I said they will, because you two put yourselves forward as being an authority on autism. Legally, it’ll have nothing to do with you, because you’ve both CYAd. Morally? That harm is on you both.
Good luck. Do not contact me again. Seeing either of your names in my inbox sends me into a panic attack. I only reached out in what is so very obviously a vain attempt at trying to halt this train wreck before it harms more autistic people because I care about people like me.
And I’m so sick of people like you hurting us. I have autistic kids who have to live in this screwed up world, and people like you, who claim that books like that are beautiful, and good, and needed? You make it worse.

There’s been another letter from him, claiming that I’m a troll and not-autistic (I knew that was coming, said so in my thread) but I’m actually smart enough not to respond to that.
I am a shaken, panic-stricken mess right now. I’m crying, and I HATE to cry.
Reviewers? Be smarter than me and don’t try to reach out to authors to stop their harm. I’m an authenticity reader for autism and… I thought maybe she’d listen. Mea culpa.