Film

A Woman On The Internet

Yesterday I wrote about sexism and feminism and stuff on my kierygeek blog because it kinda relates to why I’ve been so silent on youtube. It’s occasionally weird having multiple spaces for things, especially when they cross over, I’ll write more personally, and in detail here eventually (likely soon), but below is an excerpt of some musings brought on by trolls last night, and you can read the rest on kierygeek.com:

Sexism and misogyny to me are dehumanizing. It’s not just objectifying me, it’s denying me the truth of my existence, and equating me to the presented sum of my parts. I feel less than and other and not-human when people make assumptions based on my body, or when people are just…openly sexist – not even to me in specific, but to other people, because of their bodies and presentation.

It’s confusing, and painful, and not really safe-feeling. I know what it’s like to be a woman on the internet, even though I’m just a person on the internet.

But the complicatedness of my existence sometimes makes it easier to be quiet instead of speak, and that’s sort of new for me and I don’t like it, I just don’t know what to say.

Read the full article at KieryGeek

 

Housekeeping

If you are following KieryGeek and Humorotica I have an important note.

For reasons that involve creating safe places and also to get me to actually use more than one twitter account and figure out how to…multitask? or is it focus? something like that – if you get all your updates from @kiery28, or don’t get twitter updates about either project at all, but want them please go follow @kierygeek and @humoroticathulu.

I’m going to be using them more, more than once a week for Humorotica and more than once a month for KieryGeek. I’ll try to make it interesting and worth your while, I swear.

Thanks so much for helping me out <3

(also, if Facebook is more your style, KieryGeek and Humorotica currently share a space at KieryGeek: Rebooted. I know, I know, Humorotica should have it’s own page. One step at a time)

Survivor's Guilt

Maybe it’s because I’m on that high from just finishing a comic after not drawing in way too long because set backs and busy-ness and certain-life-things just completely zapping any creative drive out of me, or because I’ve been rocking out to music in my headphones (which I’m sure looks entertaining), but, I’m really happy right now.

Dude, I make comics.

And I make videos about gaming.

The first of season 3 is yet to be out because reasons (not limited to, but including computer failure). I do have it planned though…And all but one piece of the puzzle has come in, so yay! Computer thing is being fixed tomorrow *crossfingers*

I had an epiphany in the shower a couple days ago…about how I don’t have to feel guilty for, I guess just the whole circumstance I am in where I am actually in a place where I can create and not have to worry about stuff. I realize I’m fucking lucky and that it’s so fucking rare for that to be a thing, and more often than not I have some weird kind of survivors guilt and feel like I should shelf it and join everyone else, you know? Because I almost feel like there’s something wrong that I have the ability to do these things and lots of people don’t.

But then I realized, that’s not actually helping anyone. It’s not helping me, if I’m sitting at home, paralyzed by guilt and anxiety because I can choose the work that I do, and I’m not desperate. It’s not helping me if I force myself to go spend my time doing something that isn’t helping me actually grow when I don’t absolutely have to.

What does help people, and what does help me, is if I actually use the crazy lucky situation I’m in and create, and keep creating, and doing those things and bringing stuff into the world that makes it better, or bringing in the stuff I want to see. I don’t know how long anything is going to last, no one does, so who am I to not make things while I can?

I don’t know if that makes sense to anyone else. I just realized…I don’t know, I shouldn’t feel guilty or like something is wrong because my life and journey looks different. I shouldn’t be paralyzed by survivor’s guilt because I can choose where to dedicate my time.

Because I really do feel bad about it a lot. Which I realize is idiotic. *shrug*

And now I’m remembering this poem, which I first discovered years ago when I watched Akeela and the Bee:

Our deepest fear is not that we are inadequate.
Our deepest fear is that we are powerful beyond measure.
It is our light, not our darkness
That most frightens us.

We ask ourselves
Who am I to be brilliant, gorgeous, talented, fabulous?
Actually, who are you not to be?
You are a child of God.

Your playing small
Does not serve the world.
There’s nothing enlightened about shrinking
So that other people won’t feel insecure around you.

We are all meant to shine,
As children do.
We were born to make manifest
The glory of God that is within us.

It’s not just in some of us;
It’s in everyone.

And as we let our own light shine,
We unconsciously give other people permission to do the same.
As we’re liberated from our own fear,
Our presence automatically liberates others.

– “Our Deepest Fear” Marianne Williamson

And the more I’m trying to figure out who the fuck I think I am and what the hell I’m doing here and what makes me so qualified, the more apt it is, because….

If I’m quiet

and if I’m honest

and if I look deep within myself

In the corner I don’t want to admit exists

I’m terrified of my own power.

And that’s holding me back in the light of sudden…success

I’m really not that scary of a person

(you hear that psyche? I’m really nice!)

But for some reason, something dwelling in the cavern

says

who the fuck do you think you are?

and I just have to remember

who the fuck am I not to be?

FUNDED.

I actually knew I was funded the day I left for PAX, but it kept going between feeling real and not feeling real yet. I was worried that everyone would take back their pledges last minute and I’d just be one of the many un-funded projects for reasons – like, I don’t know, the creative police coming to my door and being like, hey, no, you don’t get to do this, you CLEARLY don’t know what you’re doing and aren’t really creative anyway. And then they’d take all the money I didn’t have yet and give it to someone else; or pocket it….

But that didn’t happen, and as the seconds ticked away the total amount I made was $1,415. Perfect because when I got home from PAX our apartment roof had leaked and soaked our mic, so now I can afford to replace it with a better mic, which means better audio for everyone!

Anyway, now that the kickstarter is officially over and I don’t have it hanging over my head, I feel like I can actually think about the next steps. I tried, and I got as much as I could done, but it was really hard because it still felt so unsure.

I acquired an HD game recorder at PAX (because I’m married to a sweet person who fronted me the cash). I got the elgato Game Capture HD, and I can’t wait to try it out, because it’s supposed to be really awesome and the owner/creator of it that I talked to at the booth was really great and helpful and open about it and what it did and didn’t do (and is going to do, etc). Score!

While I waited today, I compiled all of the PAX footage, and also added in the promised twerking attempt. See below:

Becoming Geek

Not so long ago, I was one of those really unsocialized homeschoolers who couldn’t hold up a conversation about Harry Potter but could tell you about ANWR (Alaskan National Wildlife Refuge), domestic (oil) drilling, and how little control our federal government really has over the control of oil prices. I’d only ever played racing video games occasionally – my favorite games were the educational ones my parents bought or that my grandpa got from school – namely, Mavis Beacon Typing, Story Weaver, and Amazon Trail. Those were just the games I was allowed to play, actually. My brother played Need For Speed, and Lego Racers (which I joined in on a few times) and was allowed video games and consoles.

I lived in a very controlling, mentally/spiritually/emotionally abusive home, where I raised and nurtured 6 of my siblings until I moved out days before my 7th sibling was born at 18. I was never encouraged in any artistic endeavor or to do anything but get married and become a breeder for religious reasons. That’s what I got for being born with a uterus – my reproductive organs defined my worth.

I never read The Chronicles of Narnia, Lord of the Rings, or Harry Potter because magic was witchcraft, which we would inevitably start practicing if we were exposed to it (because of our lack of brains?). At one point we abandoned our Disney collection, until my mom had too many kids it was impractical to keep them from Cinderella even if it did have a fairy godmother in it, and she did use a spell (bippity, boppity, boo).

I thus immersed myself in historical fiction and studying history so intensely that I still have a lot of random stuff memorized. It was the only allowed form of geekiness that I had, and so, I used it. I had 4 pocket constitutions; for a couple years I always had one on hand, just in case. I knew where to find ANYTHING by the article, and often section number.

Because I was so intensely set on learning I saw through the bullshit that a lot of the history “teachers” in the Christian community were peddling. Their revisionist history – while I was never allowed to say otherwise without being lectured – was clearly ill informed, completely untrue, and lacking in any historical context. I knew this because I studied everything around and leading up to events just for the context.

Now when people try to tell me that we were meant to be a theocracy by our founders, I call bullshit and brainwashed.

That’s kind of besides the point, though. The point is that I was sheltered. I was not allowed to play actual video games for more than an hour here-or-there if my siblings needed a player 2. I wasn’t allowed to read fantasy books because of religion. I hadn’t seen Star Wars until I was nearly 17, and even then I was bored because it was Episode 1. I’m convinced we only saw it because my mom was confused about the “classic” nature of it, and the kid from Jingle All The Way was starring.

I didn’t see LOTR until I was 17 at my boyfriend’s house, because he was really into it: Tolkien quote in email signature and everything. We started with the extended edition – I had to watch it 3 different times before I got the story and then I fell in love with the genre and with LOTRTwo Towers especially.

When I moved out, and moved in with my boyfriend’s family which is an even longer story, we started playing the PC version of Halo on occasion. That was my first “real” introduction to gaming, even though I hated getting shot all the time while figuring out how to move. I was also introduced to Firefly and Fringe – we’d watch these quietly to avoid waking up his parents, who are also not into science fiction or fantasy.

When we got married, we bought our first console, cable, and I’ve come a long way since then. I’d always identified as a geek, much to my mom’s horror, because I always knew I was – so you can imagine my happiness upon finding not only a ton of content, but a ton of people who were into the same things. We discovered that Focus on the Family outright lied about Harry Potter; Doctor Who is amazing; Browncoats are forever; and GAMING IS FUN. There are games that have stories, you guys! STORIES, not just racing and/or shooting. I had found that piece of me that was missing and wanting to manifest, that piece of me that helps everything else make sense.

Ask any ex-quiverfull or fundamentalist daughter and they’ll tell you it’s reallllllly hard to escape the you-are-your-uterus-mindset and find out who you actually are, what you actually like. This has been a long process for me – an ongoing process even, because I’m still unlearning old thought processes. On bad days, I just sit and wonder if doing what I want is even worth it – if being me (whoever that is) is even worth it.

It is.

Now, I’m making the third season of my web-series. I started it last year in a moment of clarity, sudden bravery, and lack of fucks to give after an existential crisis.

This project, KieryGeek Season Three, is all about storytelling: the things that I love about gaming, sci-fi, fantasy, and geekdom – I’ll be talking about world-building in games and collecting play-through footage. I’ll also be creating stories with the help of my co-conspirator Matt (MALE FRIEND I’M NOT MARRIED TO WHAT? TAKE THAT UPBRINGING!) in a hangout format. I’d really like to see this funded not just because it’s cool and another kind of community, but because it would mean so much to me personally and my constantly self-critical psyche to do something amazing and worthwhile and completely me for a change.

Thank you everybody!