This month, I’m the host for February’s Carnival of Aces. From the Asexual Agenda: “A Carnival of Aces is a monthly blogging carnival centered on the asexual spectrum (asexuals, gray-As, demisexuals, etc.). Anyone can participate, but responses should deal with asexuality or the asexual spectrum, and they should relate to the month’s theme (which is announced each month by the host). Responses should postdate the call for submissions. Alternate forms of media besides blogs are also welcome as long as they deal with the prompt.”
Previous carnival themes have addressed media representation to some extent, but the majority are several years old (from 2012-2017), and the two more recent ones are from September 2019 (“Telling Our Stories”) and December 2019 (“Literature, Academia, and Storytelling.”) This means there’s been time for the media landscape to change – in nonfiction for example, the number of books about asexuality (that I’ve been able to discover) has jumped from 4 to 9 since the end of 2019, with two more officially releasing later this month and another in March – as well as room for a focus more specifically on fiction in terms of unique carnival prompts.
So that’s the topic: Representation in Fiction. Some prompt ideas:
- How important is aspec representation in fiction to you? Does it matter much to you personally, or do you prefer other media?
- If you consume written media (by fiction I mean novels, short stories, fanfiction, graphic novels if you want…), did or does it have an impact on you when you find an aspec character, or conversely if you don’t see aspec representation? How so?
- How do you feel about the current amount of representation? Have you had success finding the representation you want in the genres and such that you prefer to read? (For example, I’m aroace, and I think I have yet to read a contemporary ace story because a lot of them seem to be about navigating romance as an ace person, and I don’t want romance any more than I want sex scenes.)
- What would you like to see more of in fiction in relation to aspec stuff? This could be anything from “just more aspec characters in general” to specific things like disabled autistic trans aces, queerplatonic relationships, more characters who are both ace and aro, characters who use specific microlabels, etc.
- Or any other relevant thoughts really; the prompts are just ideas to get you started.
Submissions are due by midnight (ish – I’m not staying up until 3 am, so honestly just get them to me before I get up the next morning, lol) central time on the 28th. You can comment on this post with the link to your submission, or email them to me at firstname.lastname@example.org. If you don’t have a blog but want to submit something anyway, you can email it to me and I can post it for you.
(Edit/note: Based on reader feedback, I altered this post slightly after first publishing it, if you saw the original and are confused if you remembered it wrong.)
Looking forward to reading everyone’s submissions!