Pixel Scroll 11/6/19 The Bulleted, Bolded People

(1) SFF MAGAZINE SURVEY. Jason Sanford is working on a report about science fiction and fantasy magazines for which he’s already interviewed a number of publishers and editors. Sanford also wants feedback from the larger genre community – that means you! Readers are welcome to respond to his short survey hosted on Google Docs.

Sanford aims to release his report after Thanksgiving.

(2) ELIGIBILITY POSTS. Cat Rambo has started her “Round-up of Awards Posts by F&SF Writers, Editors, and Publishers for 2019”.

Once again I have created this post for consolidating fantasy and science fiction award eligibility round-ups. Here are the rules.

I prefer to link to, in order of preference:

  1. Your blog post listing what you published that is eligible
  2. Your social media post listing what you published that is eligible
  3. A single link to the material that is available online

(3) CIVIL WAR. It won’t take you long to figure out what inspired James Davis Nicoll’s latest Tor.com post “Science Fiction vs. Fantasy: The Choice Is Clear”. Which side will you choose?

…Science fiction provides its readers with iron-hard, fact-based possibility. For example, Frank Herbert’s Dune played with the possibility that the right combination of eugenics and hallucinogenic drugs (taken from enormous alien worms) might allow messianic figures to draw on the memories of their ancestors. Well, how else would it work?

(4) LOOKING BACKWARD. At Quillette, Craig DeLancey analyzes the removal of Tiptree, Campbell and Lovecraft from sff award iconography in “Science Fiction Purges its Problematic Past” to lay the foundation for his own unique proposal.

…If we must be concerned with the author and not just the work, then Houellebecq’s book is an example of the balance that our criticism should achieve: we must recognize that the work is one thing, the author another. Literary criticism should not be a struggle session.

But this is not the spirit of our moment. Instead, as speculative fiction becomes more diverse, the sense that it must be corrected grows, and author and art are evaluated together. There is a notable asymmetry in this evaluation. Most fiction readers are women, and many fiction genres are dominated by women. Men who write romance novels or cozy mysteries must write under female pseudonyms, because the audiences for these genres will largely avoid books by men. In publishing, this is considered merely a demographic fact, and not an ethical failure of some kind. The attitude is very different towards science fiction. That for decades science fiction was mostly written, read, and published by white men is seen, at best, as something that must be denounced and aggressively corrected, and at worst as evidence that racism and sexism were the driving engines of this creative explosion. We do not single out other genres of fiction, or other art forms, for this kind of invective. We do not hear admirers of the golden age of jazz, for example, denounce the great composers of that era because they were nearly all African-American men. Louise Armstrong, Duke Ellington, Billy Strayhorn, Charlie Parker, John Coltrane, Thelonius Monk, Miles Davis, Wayne Shorter, and many other such men are honored for their genius, and we recognize their creations as a gift to humankind. Why not consider American science fiction in the twentieth century as a gift, instead of dismissing it as “Sterile. Male. White.”?

(5) EXPLORING SPACE – ON BOOKSTORE SHELVES. Sarah A. Hoyt treats Fonda Lee as someone who deserves mockery for “A Fundamental Misunderstanding of Supply and Demand”. Hoyt addresses Lee’s March 2019 tweets:

…Sigh.  We won’t get into the idiocy of traditional publishing and their artificial restrictions on market, but still…

This poor woman has everything backward in her head.  It makes it very difficult for me to believe that she can create any kind of sane or believable world. Why? Because she doesn’t understand the laws of supply and demand, which means she doesn’t understand reality….

…The dead great shall always be with us. You want to outsell them: write a lot and write well.  Or find another job.

Economics in the end — regardless of what prizes you get for being a good little girl, or how much your professors praised you — is cold equations. Cold equations ALL THE WAY DOWN.

Is it fair? No. Well…. Not fair in the sense that it doesn’t matter how good you are if people don’t know you exist.  But it is fair in the sense that if you write well and a lot and figure out how to advertise you’ll be rewarded.

(6) TODAY IN HISTORY.

  • November 6, 1981 Time Bandits premiered. Co-written, produced, and directed by Terry Gilliam and starring Kenny Baker, Sean Connery, John Cleese, Shelley Duvall, Ralph Richardson, Ian Holm, Michael Palin, and David Warner. It received critical acclaim with a current 89% rating at Rotten Tomatoes and was a financial success as well.  Apple has gained the rights for a Time Bandits television series to distribute on Apple TV+ with Gilliam on board in a non-writing production role and Taika Waititi as the director of the pilot. 

(7) TODAY’S BIRTHDAYS.

[Compiled by Cat Eldridge.]

  • Born November 6, 1907 Catherine Crook de Camp. Author and editor. Most of her work was done in collaboration with her husband L. Sprague de Camp, to whom she was married for sixty years. Her solo work was largely non-fiction. Heinlein in part dedicated Friday to her. (Died 2000.)
  • Born November 6, 1914 Jonathan Harris. Doctor Zachary Smith, of course, on Lost in Space. He was somewhat typecast as a villain showing up such Mr. Piper on Land of the Giants, The Ambassador on Get Smart and the voice of Lucifer on Battlestar Galactica. (Died 2002.)
  • Born November 6, 1951 Nigel Havers, 68. The bridegroom Peter Dalton in “The Wedding of Sarah Jane Smith” on The Sarah Jane Adventures. He’s done a lot of children’s genre theatre: Jack in the Beanstalk twice, Robin Hood, Cinderella, Peter Pan and Aladdin. He’s been in one Doctor Who audiobook and narrated Watership Down once upon a time. He was Mark Ingram in An Englishman’s Castle, an alternate telling of WWII. 
  • Born November 6, 1953 Ron Underwood, 66. His first directing effort was Tremors starring Kevin Bacon, Fred Ward and Reba McEntire in her acting debut. Later genre efforts include Mighty Joe Young, The Adventures of Pluto Nash, episodes of Once Upon A Time, Fear the Walking Dead and Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D. 
  • Born November 6, 1955 Catherine Ann Asaro, 64. She is best known for her books about the Ruby Dynasty, called the Saga of the Skolian Empire. I don’t think I’ve read them, so if you’ve read them, please do tell me about them. 
  • Born November 6, 1960 Michael Cerveris, 59. Remembered best as the Primary Observer on Fringe. He’s played Puck and been in Macbeth way off Broadway so his creds there are covered too. He was Mr. Tiny in Cirque du Freak: The Vampire’s Assistant, and Elihas Starr, the original Egghead, in Ant-Man and the Wasp.
  • Born November 6, 1964 Kerry Scott Conran, 55. A director and screenwriter, best known for creating and directing Sky Captain and the World of Tomorrow, a film I absolutely adore. And that’s it. That’s all he done. 
  • Born November 6, 1968 Kelly Rutherford, 51. She’s here for having the recurring role of Dixie Cousins on The Adventures of Brisco County, Jr. and that’s in addition to managing to get herself involved in more bad genre series that got cancelled fast such as Bill & Ted’s Excellent Adventures and Kindred: The Embraced (8 episodes each). Indeed, her very first genre gig had the dubious title of Phantom of the Mall: Eric’s Revenge.
  • Born November 6, 1972 Rebecca Romijn, 47. Played Mystique in the X-Men film franchise but my favorite role for her is as Eve Baird, The Guardian of the Library that cross all realities in The Librarians series.  She also was a regular playing Roxie Torcoletti in Eastwick, yet another riff the John Updike novel. She is now Number One on Discovery

(8) LEARN ABOUT STAN LEE. In LA at the Skirball Cultural Center on November 10, there will be a conversation between Danny Fingeroth, author of “A Marvelous Life: The Amazing Story of Stan Lee”, and comics historian Jerry Beck.

Discover how Stan Lee became known as the voice and face of comics at this conversation between Lee’s colleague and author Danny Fingeroth and animation historian Jerry Beck.

As editor, publisher, and co-creator of Marvel, Lee worked with creative partners, like Jack Kirby and Steve Ditko, to create world-famous characters including Spider-Man, the X-Men, and the Avengers. But Lee’s career was haunted by conflict and controversy. Be amazed by Lee’s complex and accomplished life at this illuminating discussion.

(9) MARY YES, HERMAN NO. A word sticks out prominently in this Guardian interview: “Tade Thompson: ‘Quite frankly Victor Frankenstein was a dick’ “.

The book that influenced my writing
Mary Shelley’s Frankenstein. I read it as a teenager and the seething mess of nested narratives and charnel houses lodged itself in my imagination. I’ve read it more than any other book and hardly a day goes by when I don’t think of making corpses walk. Quite frankly Victor Frankenstein was a dick.

The book I think is most overrated
Moby-Dick by Herman Melville. With apologies to my US friends and my English teacher. This book didn’t just leave me cold. When I finished I wanted to make a list of everybody who had recommended it and make them eat it.

(10) GENRE WORK NOTED. BBC’s panelists invite everyone to “Explore the list of 100 Novels That Shaped Our World”. Chip Hitchcock says, “I count 17 of the 100 (and there’s probably a few I’m missing through not knowing the works), although I’d be happier if the Twilight series wasn’t one of them.”

(11) NOT A TWELVE-STEP PROGRAM. “Boeing aims for Moon landing in ‘fewer steps'”.

Aerospace giant Boeing has unveiled its proposal for a lander that could take humans to the Moon’s surface.

Under a programme called Artemis, the White House wants to return humans to the Moon by 2024.

Its approach, named “Fewest Steps to the Moon”, would use the huge Space Launch System (SLS) rocket.

The company says its plan reduces the complexity involved in sending several different bits of hardware into space on multiple launches.

For most robotic space missions, all the hardware needed for the mission is launched on one rocket. Likewise, the crewed Apollo missions to the Moon in the 1960s and 70s required only one lift-off.

However, the Artemis missions are expected to involve several flights to loft all the hardware needed. For example, the lander elements are likely to be launched separately from the Orion capsule carrying crew.

Boeing says it can land astronauts on the Moon with only five “mission critical events” – such as launch, orbit insertion and others – instead of the 11 or more required by alternative strategies.

…The company says its lander would be ready for the 2024 mission, called Artemis-3. But Boeing’s plan would depend on a more powerful variant of the SLS rocket called Block 1B.

Under current Nasa plans, the Block 1B version of the rocket wouldn’t be ready until 2025.

(12) VARIATION ON FLORIDA MAN. UPI says be on the lookout — “Florida police seek return of 300-pound Bigfoot”.

Police in Florida are seeking information on the disappearance of an unusual piece of property — a 300-pound Bigfoot statue.

The Boynton Beach Police Department said the 8-foot-tall Sasquatch statue was stolen from in front of a store called Mattress Monsterz in October.

(13) HPL. SYFY Wire opines: “Nic Cage goes full Lovecraft in first trailer for cosmic horror tale Color Out of Space”. Tell me if you don’t think the kid doesn’t look like he just walked out of A Christmas Story. (Not the one framed below, the one in the beginning of the trailer,)

[Thanks to John King Tarpinian, Mike Kennedy, Nina Shepardson, Martin Morse Wooster, JJ, Cat Eldridge, Chip Hitchcock, and Andrew Porter for some of these stories. Title credit goes to File 770 contributing editor of the day Anna Nimmhaus.]

83 thoughts on “Pixel Scroll 11/6/19 The Bulleted, Bolded People

  1. 4) What an idiotic article! For starters, there are quite a few male writers of cozy mysteries and even romances, writing under their own names, a female/gender neutral pen name or as part of male/female writing teams. It’s usually no secret that these authors are male, even when they use female pen names, and overwhelmingly readers don’t mind. In fact, male writers who attended RWA events and Romantic Times cons have reported that they were warmly welcomed by the overwhelmingly female membership. I have no idea how things are at Malice Domestic, the big cozy mystery convention, but I doubt that they discriminate against men.

    It is true that some readers are reluctant to try romances or cozy mysteries by new to them male writers. This often affects self-published authors, because due to their huge popularity and high sales, romance and cozy mystery have attracted their share of gold-digger authors who don’t read the genre and are not familiar with it and only want to reap some of the profits. Quite often, these profit-oriented self-published romance and cozy mystery authors are men and because they are unfamiliar with the genre, they violate reader expectations and taboos. There were also even more problematic things, such as a male self-publisher talking to female readers on Facebook in a female persona and asking their fans about sexual experiences, fantasies, etc…, which he then mined for future books.

    Because they have been burned so often, some (female) romance and cozy mystery readers are wary of new to them self-published male authors. However, this does not apply to traditionally published books, because readers know that e.g. Harlequin or Berkley would not publish a book which violates basic genre expectations.

    The real reason why there are comparatively few traditionally published male romance and cozy mystery authors is because romance and cozy mystery are low prestige genres with low advances. Also, if men write in these genres, the books are often marketed in a completely different way. A romance written by a male authors is likely to end up in General Fiction, while cozyish mysteries written by male authors are likely to be packaged as regular crime fiction without cutesy cartoon covers.

    Finally, women readers have every right not to read romances and cozy mysteries by male authors. After all, how many men are there who categorically refuse to read SFRF by women?

    7) I enjoyed the Catherine Asaro novels I read, but then romantic subplots in SFF don’t bother me. In fact, I rather like them, when well done.

  2. (4) Looking Backward

    The comment notes asymmetry but doesn’t go deep enough in examining those asymmetries. For example: “Men who write romance novels or cozy mysteries must write under female pseudonyms, because the audiences for these genres will largely avoid books by men. In publishing, this is considered merely a demographic fact, and not an ethical failure of some kind.” But it is not a “demographic fact” that exists entirely separate from the gendered sneering thrown at romance writers and readers. Nor is it a “demographic fact” that exists apart from the tendency to categories similar novels written (overtly) by men as “literature” rather than “romance”. The gender dynamics around romance as a genre are very far from some sort of objective “demographic fact” that can be compared neutrally to the social dynamics of the SFF community. “We do not single out other genres of fiction, or other art forms, for this kind of invective.” In point of fact, sticking to the parallel with romance, there is a great deal of self-critique and invective going on currently with regard to long-entrenched bias within the romance industry. It’s reacting against a different history than what the SFF community is reacting against, but it’s part of the same drive for opening up discussions about addressing historic bias.

  3. 4)

    @Cora Buhlert:

    After all, how many men are there who categorically refuse to read SFRF by women?

    Point well taken. There was a reason that C. J. Cherryh used her initials.

  4. @Rob —

    Point well taken. There was a reason that C. J. Cherryh used her initials.

    Andre Norton, anyone? James Tiptree?

    Incidentally, I’d love to know some names for male authors writing romances or cozies. I’d be curious to check them out.

    (And speaking of authors adopting opposite-gender personas, I remember the kerfuffle when Josh Lanyon “came out” as a woman in the mm romance subgenre. The issue was not that she was a woman writing mm romance, but that she had skirted very close to the edge of adopting a false male persona in addition to simply the name in PR postings.)

  5. 7) Jonathan Harris’ voice-character on Battlestar Galactica was Lucifer, not Lucier. He also did voice work for a number of animated series, from Rainbow Bright and Freakazoid! to The Twisted Tales of Felix the Cat.

  6. For male romance authors, there is Harold Lowry a.k.a. Leigh Greenwood, who profited from the same gender-ambiguous name as Leigh Brackett. He even was president of the RWA for a while.

    Peter O’Donnell, creator of Modesty Blaise, also wrote historical romances and gothics as Madeleine Brent. The one I’ve read, Moonraker’s Bride, was very good.

    Tom E. Huff wrote gothics and “bodiceripper”-style historicals under several pen names, most notably Jennifer Wilde.

    Roger Sanderson writes medical romances for Mills & Boon under the name Gill Sanderson. It’s widely known that he is a man.

    Husband and wife team Tom and Sharon Curtis write as Laura London.

    Another husband and wife team, Frank and Wendy Brennan, wrote as Emma Darcy. After Frank died, Wendy Brennan continued writing alone under the Emma Darcy pen name.

    Thriller writer Bob Mayer co-wrote three (I think) adventure romances with Jennifer Crusie approx. ten years ago. Mayer wrote the male POV scenes, Crusie the female ones. I’ve read two of the books in question and enjoyed them.

    Historical novelist Bernard Cornwell and his wife Susannah Kells co–wrote a few historical romances under her name in the 1980s. I read one of them and enjoyed it.

    Teach me Tonight has a list with several additional male romance authors.

    For male cozy mystery authors, there is Tim Myers who writes cozies as Jessica Beck, Elizabeth Bright, Chris Cavender, Melissa Glazer, Casey Mayes and D.B. Morgan.

    Another cozy mystery author I assumed was male based on their name turned out to be actually female.

    Finally, there is Alexander McCall Smith, whose mysteries could definitely be considered cozies.

  7. @Rob Thornton, Contrarius:

    Point well taken. There was a reason that C. J. Cherryh used her initials.

    And Tanya Huff started writing as T. S. Huff, though had dropped that by the time the first novel was published.

  8. And remember Ursula K. LeGuin’s one-time appearance as “U. K. LeGuin” because the editor who bought “Nine Lives” thought a female author’s name would make the readers of Playboy nervous.

  9. @Rob Thornton: I wonder a bit about Cherryh’s initials; I see Wikipedia references Gunn, who doesn’t footnote the claim, and she started by selling to an editor/publisher who had been ~discovering female writers (and not just ~romantic writers; consider (e.g.) Le Guin) for some time. (This contrasts with Tiptree, who started several years previously, before 2nd(?)-wave feminism, and was selling to editors with no such track record.) OTOH, Wollheim (who was just starting out) may have wanted to distinguish her from (e.g.) Marion(!) Zimmer Bradley, who wrote much more emotive works.

  10. Contrarius:

    I really like the “Cat In The Stacks” mysteries, a cosy series written by one Miranda James, who is a psuedonym for Dean James. His picture is right on the back flap/back cover of each book.

  11. (4) a reasonable take on the current state of affairs in SF. By all means, let us consider 20th century American science fiction as the gift it is. Love the positive attitude! It’s the art, not the artist.

    Pulling these names is erasure of a sort, and the article makes that plain by quoting someone who first learned of Tiptree through the award. I’d never heard of Campbell until I found myself in the position of having to vote on the Campbell award (I started voting in the Hugo Awards, and found this site, when I joined Sasquan so I could vote for The Flash pilot) and I’m sure others could say the same. Campbell and Tiptree will definitely have a lesser impact on present and future consciousness because of the erasure. Not from history, BTTF style, but the erasure of silence. Fewer will know of them and their contributions, which were numerous and important despite their personal flaws. Well, who isn’t flawed? Is no one to be celebrated? Again, the art, not the artist.

    (9) there are two books in the Western canon that are better in abridged form, and Moby Dick is one of them. There’s a chapter that’s essentially a detailed description of how blubber is removed from the whale. Interesting but it undeniably brings the narrative to a dead stop. And there are other such chapters. It’s half novel, half history of whaling. It’s an unhappy marriage.

  12. @ Miles, re Moby Dick. You say that, and yet that chapter remains the one that sticks in my mind more than any other.

  13. Miles Carter: There’s a chapter that’s essentially a detailed description of how blubber is removed from the whale. Interesting but it undeniably brings the narrative to a dead stop. And there are other such chapters. It’s half novel, half history of whaling. It’s an unhappy marriage.

    Having first read Moby-Dick as a comic, then seen the movie (on TV), when I finally read the book I was surprised by the alternating chapters that are all about what was known of whales themselves as a species, and technical explanations of how they were processed once killed. I tried to take it in stride, thinking “Well, it’s a 19th century novel, they didn’t write them like Hemingway.” However, even if the enduring popularity of Moby-Dick comes from the characters and action, why didn’t all the technical chapters undercut its success? It may be the forerunner of the kind of didactic bestsellers that came out in the postwar US, by Arthur Hailey, James Michener, and others. Like, in Hailey’s Airport novel you learn a hell of a lot about the industry while the drama plays out. 19th century readers may have thought it was great to find out the inside story of whaling.

  14. (4) The linked column says that the Twitter profile of Julie Phillips says “Biographer of Ursula K. Le Guin and of James Tiptree, Jr., who was not a murderer.” I don’t know when the “not a murderer” line was added — the Oct 10 screengrab on the Internet Archive says “Biographer of Ursula K. Le Guin and of James Tiptree, Jr., who was not a f—ing murderer. “, and the next previous one of Sep 2018 doesn’t address the subject.

    “Not a murderer” is only true for some very contrived definitions of murder, that courts would not accept, nor would most people.

    Is there any doubt whatsoever that if the police had showed up after she shot Ting, but before she shot herself, that she would have been arrested and charged with murder (or legal equivalent), and convicted? You can feel sympathy for her, you can approve of assisted suicide, you can even envision situations where you would be the one providing assistance. But one individual making the choice to shoot someone to kill them, and then following through to do that, regardless of whether they are competent to ask for it or not, or whether they want you to or not, is murder.

  15. @Miles Carter, re “erasure”: I do not think that word means what you think it means.

  16. Mike Glyer on November 8, 2019 at 11:15 am said:

    Miles Carter: There’s a chapter that’s essentially a detailed description of how blubber is removed from the whale. Interesting but it undeniably brings the narrative to a dead stop. And there are other such chapters. It’s half novel, half history of whaling. It’s an unhappy marriage.

    Having first read Moby-Dick as a comic, then seen the movie (on TV), when I finally read the book I was surprised by the alternating chapters that are all about what was known of whales themselves as a species, and technical explanations of how they were processed once killed.

    I have never got to grips with Moby-Dick but the idea of chapters that shift from a narrative style to a more informative style sounds appealing. After all, non-fiction writing can be very entertaining. I think of the side explanations in Hitchhiker’s Guide also: essentially a break in the narrative for weird explanations of things but often the very stuff that sticks with you (e.g. the theology of the Babel Fish).

  17. As a proud owner of a undergrad degree in English, I was required to read many books. Out of the American Canon, I actually enjoyed Moby Dick and Ford Madox Ford’s The Good Soldier the most. I enjoyed the whale facts/narrative structure and it carried me along rather nicely (this may foreshadow my current existence as a technical writer).

  18. “It may be the forerunner of the kind of didactic bestsellers that came out in the postwar US…”
    And the forerunner of Neal Stephenson.

  19. I wondered if Moby Dick was originally published in serial form but apparently it wasn’t. A weekly chapter that was occasionally an essay on whale facts would have been entertaining.

  20. Miles Carter: (4) [is] a reasonable take on the current state of affairs in SF

    … for wildly-divergent definitions of the term “reasonable”. 🙄

  21. Red Panda Fraction on November 8, 2019 at 1:40 pm said:

    “It may be the forerunner of the kind of didactic bestsellers that came out in the postwar US…”
    And the forerunner of Neal Stephenson.

    True but if I have to read an info-dump I would want Neal Stephenson to write it.

  22. I think I’ve said this before but Stephenson’s prose has lost its bounce and humor in recent books. It’s shame because that’s part of what his writing so enjoyable.

    But I think you were on to something when looking to see if Moby Dick had originally been serialized. Given the success of Typee and Omoo, he was maybe returning to more familiar ground that he thought his readers might have liked. He might have also thought that the more didactic sections would appeal to people interested in adventure literature and who were just curious about how things worked, like Rob mentioned. And quantity in 19th century literature wouldn’t necessarily have been the negative that it is today. I’m thinking here of the three-volume novel (sometimes three-Decker or triple Decker).

    Oh, and it may be possible to draw a line from Moby Dick to Thomas Pynchon’s Gravity’s Rainbow to Stephenson’s Cryptonomicon.

  23. Count me as someone who liked the whale blubber chapter (as I recall, our teacher told us we could skip some chapters, but I was a completist about reading all of the book). Doesn’t Les Miserables have a chapter or two about the Paris sewer system.

    I think the comparison with Michener is apt.

  24. Honestly, when I read Moby Dick I had a tendency to skim the narrative sections and focus on the technical sections.

    But I’m a geek.

  25. I’m afraid I bounced off of Moby Dick. There are many Great Classics of Western Literature I love, but that was not one of them.

    As for Stephenson, I’ve been less impressed with his most recent works, except for The Rise and Fall of D.O.D.O, which I mostly thought was brilliant. (Though I’ll confess, I did start to skim a bit during the Epic Viking Poem about Walmart.) I don’t know much about Nicole Galland, his co-author on that one, but she did an excellent job of keeping him on track, helping him remember that the tone was supposed to be light, and, I’m pretty sure, helped the characters–especially the female ones–seem like actual characters, not just props in a complicated joke.

  26. @bill

    “Not a murderer” is only true for some very contrived definitions of murder, that courts would not accept, nor would most people.

    Is there any doubt whatsoever that if the police had showed up after she shot Ting, but before she shot herself, that she would have been arrested and charged with murder (or legal equivalent), and convicted?

    Haven’t we gone through this already, at length? Andrea Yates had post-partum psychosis, was called a murderer after killing her children and judged and convicted of their murder at her trial. It was only after one of the prosecution witnesses was shown to have blatantly lied on the stand that she got a new trial and was judged not guilty of murder by reason of insanity….a judgement she SHOULD have gotten even without the lying witness. The tendency to judge all killers – including those with serious mental illness – as murderers even before they get to trial is what gets most of these people convicted for murder.

    Alice Sheldon had a serious mental illness – bipolar disorder, diagnosed long before her death. She may or may not have been non compos mentis at the time of the killing and her suicide. We can never know for sure. But calling her a murderer flat-out as an established fact is perpetuating the pre-judgement of other people with mental illness.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.