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Introducing new guest blogger: April Daniels

Hi! Charlie here. I'm about to hit the road for ten days (I'm one of the guests at Italcon next week). And while I'm away, I'm handing over the blogging podium to a new guest blogger: April Daniels, author of Dreadnought (and, forthcoming, Sovereign).

April Daniels graduated from UC Santa Cruz with a degree in literature, and then promptly lost her job during the 2008 stock crash and recession. After she recovered from homelessness, she completed her first manuscript by scribbling a few sentences at a time between calls while working in the customer support department for a well-known video game console.

She has a number of hobbies, most of which are boring and predictable. As nostalgia for the 1990s comes into its full bloom, she has become ever more convinced that she was born two or three years too late and missed all the good stuff the first time around.

Early in her writing practice, April set her narrative defaults to “lots of lesbians” and never looked back.



I've read Dreadnought and it was excellent. Looking forward to both Sovereign and her guest post(s).


I hesitate to ask, but this is the time to confirm an assumption. I assume you mean new as a blogger here, though a reasonably long-time commenter?

Look forward to her posts. Dreadnought is on the ever lengthening TBR list.


Yes, I'm the same person, but I haven't gust-blogged here before, I don't think.


Haven't read it yet, but asked our school library to add it to the collection based on this review:

(Note: spoilers in the review.)


Ah, yes, a liberal arts degree.... Weekend before this past, I was in Philly for a Renfaire, and met this very lovely lady (too freakin' young for me... in her 30's...) who then invited me to their concert. Three women... who bill themselves as Chaste Treasures... and only do bawdy songs. And, as she said from the stage, please give tips and buy their CDs, they're all liberal arts majors... and this is how they make their living.



Good! Just had to make sure. Insert cliché about Assuming.


Like JReynolds, read Dreadnought (any author who OGH invites to be a guest blogger is invariably worth reading), and rather enjoyed it...

Now to wait for the arrival of Sovereign :)


Another Dreadnought fan, I am very happy with this.


Dreadnought is a damned good read, sharply inventive, thoughtfully written, with head-over-heels pacing and humane characters.

Also, it's pretty refreshing to read an intelligent treatment of a transgendered protagonist. Well done, April_D.


Well, this gave me the impetus to add Dreadnought to my next Large River order (look, visiting my nearest bookshop costs abut GB£90 a trip, and ordering plus collecting stuff takes 2 trips).

On a more personal note, I've always found you intelligent and insightful when you comment.


I really enjoyed Dreadnaught :) Danny was a great character and the subtle worldbuilding of a modern world with super powers was great compared to many other superhero settings. Looking forward to Sovereign!


Yay! I love it when my separate interests suddenly align!


So.. Question: If someone were to throw a pile of euros at it and turn dreadnaught into a movie or tv show, who is your fantasy cast ?


The post is coming! But I have a whole lot of anxiety-inducing things regarding SOVEREIGN that I need to put away first, thus the delay.

As for casting DREADNOUGHT, the problem with casting YA properties is that the lead, almost by definition has to be played by an unknown, and if you want the flick to work, they need to have chemistry with the supporting characters, so everything needs to build off casting that unknown. So I don't really know who I'd want to cast.


For cynical reasons (i.e. getting someone actually trans onto the Tee-Vee who isn't Caucasian is a hard sell beyond hard sell) I'd go with:

Valentijn De Hingh

Now, I'm not saying it'd be a brilliant reversal when the "Disney Princess" met an actual on-the-street trans non-Cauc antagonist, but...


Dr Who just did the entire "Not Male Coded Beautiful Non-Caucasian Lesbian" where the Pope interrupted a quasi-Lesbian date, soooo. (Spoiler: The World didn't end, the Daily Mail didn't lynch anyone, no-one cared because, you know: "Ugly non-Caucasian Lesbians" doesn't actually threaten anyone.

I'm just saying: There's some scope for the TRANS-SUPER-WOMAN (totally Caucasian) to have a "CAPE MOMENT - DARLINGS, NO CAPES!!" and get rescued by someone a little less "complete" in transformation, and maybe a little less perfect in their mental schema?

@Host. Of course not: no chance in hell they'd run this stuff, but.... Dr Who is getting there, so who knows?


From Host - won't be commenting on your post until 300, loved the book though. Much love.


(And yes, please read that through the Mind of the Hollywood exec seeing the TV prints / punts.

I assume that's obvious, but it might not be)


And, sigh [persona off].

OP's book is especially relevant because it deals with a trans Mind suddenly having to deal with a perfect "female" body, where that body is determined by the society surrounding it. (Patriarchy Male).

Trust me: she is actually doing social work for the huuuge split between Millennials and later generations. Go look on Reddit or other forums: modern trans people can see almost seamless transitions within 2-4 years with drugs (and a little surgery, hello Thailand). OP, herself, is like 99% cannot tell zone. (Sorry April, but making it blunt here).

This is a Massive change from the people I know / have protected / have had to bring back from the cusp of darkness. So (and no, you're probably not in that tiny world), OP is making a huge difference to how the future plays out.

/soapbox off.

Umm. Yeah, I won't be commenting.

But love, and so on. You rock. We love You.


If 99% of people can't tell I'm trans, then I'm not sure why I keep getting called "sir" every day. I'll give you a hint: the photo you've seen of me is the ONE photo of me that I like, and it's getting out of date.

The point of making Danielle supermodel hot was to point out how our ideal selves prior to transition are often simply fantasies, and those fantasies are inevitably shaped by the environment which is polluted with ads, but at the same time giving the readers I was really concerned about a chance to have some vicarious wish-fulfillment anyhow.


Well nannyware blocks your .com so I only "know you" in text form.


fantasies are inevitably shaped by the environment which is polluted with ads

One of the points I liked about the book was how you explicitly mentioned this. Kids learn it in media class, but they usually don't think about how it affects them. Danny's aha moment was well written.

I also liked how you kept the relationship/identity stuff front-and-centre. It makes Danny a real teenager (as opposed to An Example For The Author's Preaching).

The library is out of money for this year (books closed last week) but we'll be adding both Dreadnought and Sovereign to our collection in the fall. (High school library.)

Do you do author talks? (And are you near Toronto?)


Yes, which in my own little way I was linking into with the "10 Hottest Transgender Individuals Who Found Success as Female Models" piece. The only way the mainstream can deal, it appears, is to subvert to their own tropes. [Spoiler: that title is pure garbage / crap - if it had not used the word "female" and had a mixture of spectrum, it'd still be a bit icky: but it's full on denying that said "individuals" are actually, you know, women. Badly worded and terrible. Which is why I chose it: but if there were film rights, getting representation would be a tough call even for those whose genetics gave them modelesque looks].

"The Mirror is the Cruelest Judge" has been a trope since before Greek mythology, but (and please do take this as a re-imagining of current US politics into something a little more positive), you really do write "as a woman" (to subvert all those millennia of stereotypes and crud with an ironic twist).

Mind that matters, although I somewhat understand. (YA books, new generations nose wiggle)


If you get called "Sir" everyday, it says a lot more about the person using the gender-pronoun as a defensive measure to their own idealized gender binary notions than it does about you. If I can mimic a TERF, I know how their Minds work as well; don't fall into their traps (futari pun intended, which is a bit on the nose, but hey - if we can't poke fun at it all, then they win, rigid definitions and Handmaiden's Tale territory. [And yes: I do know futari and Trans Rights are totally separate things - I don't conflate them. Many do.] ).


[Ah, translation for older males who probably will be shocked by searches]:

半月 / hangetsu are the basis for the current internet craze for Futanari.

Warning - if you search, find you will. Disney it is not. It's also nothing to do with trans+ issues but there's an interesting acceptance phase cross-over.





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This page contains a single entry by Charlie Stross published on May 21, 2017 7:02 PM.

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