Hey, this post was supposed to go up weeks ago!
As a kind of antidote to my last post.
Serious literature focusing on social and individual problems is good and necessary. But it should not be the only type of reading that’s available.
From a post by Sherwood Smith and Rachel Manija Brown on who gets to escape, on Kaleidoscope, which starts out with that famous quote by Tolkein about prison and escape and just gets more awesome as it goes on.
When I clicked on the link, I didn’t realize this:
Kaleidoscope is an anthology of diverse contemporary YA fantasy stories. Alisa Krasnostein and Julia Rios are co-editing the anthology, which has a planned release date of August, 2014. Currently we are fundraising on Pozible to make this project happen.
And from Jo Walton, who says things I want to say, but about 50 million times more eloquently, Fantasy, Reading, and Escapism on Tor.com (also referencing Tolkein):
I don’t feel defensive about what I choose to read. I don’t feel proud of some pieces and ashamed of other pieces. It’s all reading, and I do it all for fun. I don’t do it to escape, I’m not in prison. I like my life. But when I was in prison, excuse me, boarding school, and when I was stuck in hospital (which is even more like prison except without time off for good behaviour) of course I wanted to escape and of course I was delighted that books were there for me to escape into. If your life sucks, escaping it makes a great deal of sense. If your life is bounded and restricted, seeing that more options exist helps, even if they’re all theoretical and imaginary. Escaping doesn’t mean avoiding reality, escaping means finding an escape route to a better place. Seeing those options can be the file to get through the bars. Anyone who thinks this is a bad thing is the enemy.