…the use of the term Mary-Sue comes with an obvious assumption attached: if characters like this are simply unacceptable by definition, then there must be other types of characters out there that are OK. After all, not every single female character ever written can possibly be a Mary-Sue. Even the people who cling to the term Mary-Sue as if it was their long-lost twin would not dispute that.
The Mary-Sue is a ‘fake girl’. A plastic girl, an unrealistic girl, a perfect girl. Her opposite number in that case must be a real girl. A human girl. A realistic girl. An imperfect girl. Fictional ladies whose failures and flaws are right there on the page. Ladies who cannot be dismissed as ‘too perfect’ or ‘wish fulfilment’. Let’s call this type of character a Sarah-Jane.
Now, because Sarah-Janes are in total contrast to the Mary-Sue, defying all the traits that are supposed to make a Mary-Sue unacceptable, then the Sarah-Jane, by definition, must be acceptable. I mean, obviously they’re not as tightly defined as the Mary-Sue type, and because their major trait is that they’re realistic, they’re going to vary a lot. But they must be the kind of character that readers want to see. The kind that readers will embrace. The kind that they will at least give a chance.
Yeah. No. It turns out the vast majority of talk about Sarah-Janes - realistic, flawed, prominent female characters in fiction - *still* centres on what is wrong with them, and all the reasons they are SO ANNOYING for… not being perfect?
Zoë Marriott, “Real Girls, Fake Girls, Everybody Hates Girls”
This is just a sample of a long and thoughtful essay — check out the rest!
murmuredlullabye asked: I want to preface this by saying that you are free to ignore or answer this ask in private if you wish. By scrolling through your posts, I noticed you indicate in a couple of places that you have PTSD. I'm currently considering working on a piece about recovering from war, and I was wondering if there's anything you'd be willing to share about your experience with PTSD. Thank you for your time & consideration.
TRIGGER WARNING: Violence, psychological distress, rape
“How do you pick up the threads of an old life? How do you go on, when in your heart, you begin to understand, there is no going back? There are some things that time cannot mend. Some hurts that go too deep… That have taken hold.”
Why did you want to be a C-Sec Officer in the first place?
Hm. That’s a good question. There were several reasons, I guess.
While most of Garrus’s conversation is generally a backstory dump (as you can’t really discuss about the mission with him, unlike with Kaidan and Ashley)… his character arc does pose some interesting questions.
Such as how far will Commander Shepard be willing to go in order to complete his mission? It is the same question that Anderson and Saren’s history poses. Of course, it is only fitting that for the first game, they find Garrus - a fellow turian - to challenge Shepard in those regards again.
The start of Garrus’s introduction has him very intertwined with Saren’s reputation. His father was afraid he will end up like Saren, C-Sec tasks him to find evidence of false play in Saren’s activity, he was a potential Spectre.
And he hates Saren to the bone.
Nothing better to introduce the player to the entire concept that you should never judge a book by its cover.
Garrus might be a turian. He might be reckless and want justice dished out in the same way as Saren… but he is not Saren.
Okay, this is actually what you do if you’re being sexually harassed in any kind of public space. Draw attention to it, preferably pull away and let EVERYONE know that someone is touching you. This will not only get him to get off you but he’ll definitely think about this situation next time he wants to do something like this.
Spreading the word.
My mom and I were talking about this today after hearing about a woman who was molested on a plane who said nothing until she was picked up at the airport by her parents. My mom looked at me and asked what I would do in that situation and I looked her dead in the eye and I told her “it would take me .02 seconds to realize what was going on and yell angrily, and then I would be straight on to bitch slapping him so hard he wouldn’t be able to see the punch I’d throw with the opposite hand”.
She nodded and accepted my salty language like a seasoned sailor.
I’ve had experience with this before, in Prague a group of five girls and I were followed by three men at night. After a while they started yelling at us, the most common being “how much?” Meaning how much we “cost” as prostitutes. Seeing as they weren’t going to stop, I turned on my heel, faced them (which surprised them), spat at their feet and responded with “You couldn’t afford me.” This prompted the other girls to start yelling back at them as well, starting with our spitfire Czech friend to start slinging curses in Czech as she and the rest of the girls came up beside me. Needless to say the men backed off and pretty much fled. They weren’t expecting a fight. It empowered me and encouraged the rest of the girls to yell back too.
I’ve heard that a lot of people don’t know what to do in this situation because they’ve been taught all their lives to be polite and non-aggressive. Keep your heads down or whatever.
Keep in mind that studies have shown that rapists look for victims who won’t fight back.
Remember that nobody has the right to touch you without your consent or harass you, and you have all the right to make the biggest fuss about it that you can possibly make.
Get angry. Be in command.