Thanks for visiting! I’m Julie Sondra Decker, author of fantasy, speculative fiction, and young adult novels. I use this site to provide information about my work, blog about writing and publishing, give and get advice, distribute my latest news, and chronicle all the ups and downs of being a writer.
There’s lots of information here about my existing projects, upcoming projects, and writing-related philosophies and opinions. Please feel free to comment, contact, follow, or suggest anything you like.
This writing blog occasionally links to content I’ve created offsite. Please be aware that much of my pseudonymous content will not link back here. Thanks!
More than forty mentors have volunteered to accept applications from aspiring authors. We have posted our wish lists and mine is posted over on my blog (if you didn’t know, my Blogspot author blog is chattier and more active; this site primarily posts the biggest news and milestones).
Authors who are trying to get an agent will read our bios, find mentors who are accepting what they write, and apply to us on December 2. We’ll pick an author (and a couple alternates) and help them refine their pitches and spit-shine their manuscripts.
I hope I get to meet some amazing authors, and I’m anticipating some great opportunities for whoever becomes my mentee.
An interview with me was posted on the DiversifYA blog today. DiversifYA is all about providing resources for authors to make their young-adult fiction diverse and sharing perspectives about what it’s like to live with different experiences.
I submitted a suggestion last month volunteering myself as an asexual interviewee, and Marieke Nijkamp accepted my offer and sent me her questions. Marieke told me she’s gray asexual herself (an orientation that usually suggests being somewhere between asexual and non-asexual), and she discussed it in a roundtable shortly before my interview posted, so that was a nice connection!
I’ve appeared in Digital Journal now, hot on the heels of the Daily Mail article, and I’m afraid it’s full of misleading information and mistakes. It’s pulled heavily from the Daily Mail article from earlier today, but then it adds embellishments and outright factual inaccuracies. I wasn’t asked or told about appearing in this. A friend found it and posted it on my Facebook.
The full title is “‘I don’t need to be raped’ an Asexual activist speaks out.” (Capitalization and punctuation intact.) I don’t understand the media’s fascination with sticking “rape” in the headline. Would someone say they do “need to be raped”?
I’m repeatedly called “Julia” in the article. My name is Julie. It’s not short for Julia.
A quote: “Anthony F. Bogaert of Brock University states that he believes one percent of the world population is bisexual.” I don’t know where “bisexual” came from. This article is on asexuality. So is Bogaert’s work. And the next part of the sentence says “and according to Julie Sondra Decker of Tampa, Florida she is one of them.” So according to this article, I’m bisexual.
They claim I never had an intimate relationship with a man or a woman, but I dated in high school. It’s part of how I found out I didn’t like it. The fact that I dated in high school is public in my body of work.
None of my family members ever dragged me to a doctor like this article implies. My mother did ask about it during an examination she asked me to get before going to college. The suggestion that this was an attempted intervention is exaggerated.
The article claims I have a psychology degree. This built on the misconception in The Daily Mail and gave me an imaginary degree. I majored in education. I studied psychology. I don’t have a psychology degree and have never claimed to.
“While asexual’s [sic] never pursue a sexual relationship, some do have romantic relationships.”–Untrue. The author should watch the video embedded in this article, because I debunk that assumption. Some asexual people do pursue sexual relationships despite lack of sexual attraction.
It’s full of really egregious typos too. I’m sorry to see this–something with this many errors and misleading statements does more harm than good.
I received a few quick interview questions from someone at The Daily Mail today, mentioning without detail that they were doing “a piece” on me, so I answered the questions briefly. However, most of the article that got published a few hours later did not come from those questions. I had a few problems with the content as well.
That title: Very poorly written. Take out the appositive phrase “and never will,” and you have a sentence that says “Asexual woman on how she never has have sex.” In the title? Ouch.
Also the title: I have never stated that I “will never have sex.” I don’t think I will, because I don’t think I’ll ever be attracted to anyone that way, but I don’t make dogmatic statements like that.
Also the title again: On the page, the full title is “‘Men say I need a good raping’: Asexual woman, 35, on how she never has, and never will, have sex.” I’m very put off by their need to put the word “rape” in this title.
The photo: Grabbed from my Facebook photos without asking me to provide a photo or asking for the credit. The photo is of me in my bathing suit. It is nine years old. (It was featured on my Facebook because I was writing a novel even while on vacation. I guess they used it to get a good thumbnail for the views?)
I’m repeatedly referred to as “the blonde” which sounds weird to me.
A bunch of the quotes were mined from the Salon article published about me in 2005, a Huffington Post article, and one of my YouTube videos.
It contradicts itself by saying I started calling myself “nonsexual” at 15 (changing to “asexual” later when the community settled on the term), then later saying I called myself “asexual” at 15.
The statements about my family are false. My mom joked about how I’m probably a closet lesbian, because I cuddled with my girl friends in high school, and though she asked me to get a personal exam before going to college and asked the doctor about my lack of interest being a sign of pathology, she did not drag me around to doctors trying to see what was wrong with me.
I don’t have a degree in psychology. I have a degree in elementary education. I took enough classes in psych to have a minor, though.
Some of the quotes from me are just fine, and overall the article may be a little unfocused but still has some interesting stuff despite its inaccuracies and weird choices. Throughout this week I’ve been finding out I’m in the media without being told by the authors, though. I found this one when someone commented on my YouTube that they’d seen me in The Daily Mail and I had to Google it.
The Huffington Post is celebrating Asexual Awareness Week and now I’ve appeared in an article again. This time, instead of being a nameless contributor to the collaborative video they featured, the article focuses entirely on me and embeds my “Asexuality: An Overview” video.
The Huffington Post has decided to celebrate Asexual Awareness Week. They kicked off by featuring a video by the new asexuality YouTube channel, Everything’s A-Okay.
And I happen to be one of the asexual people who contributed to the video! The brief text part of the article it appears in also includes one quote from the video, and it happens to be something I said, though it was uncredited in the article.
I did something I’ve never done before: I started writing a short story, and then I paused writing it to write something else. This new short story is the something else.
I recently came upon a call for submissions put out by an LGBT-flavored magazine. They had a teeny word count limit (I think it was 2,000 words?), but I thought I might have a story for them in my archives. I dug up my old story “Grace” from 1997 and thought I might buff it up, but then I saw that the magazine doesn’t accept reprints and it had been on my website before, so I’d have to completely rewrite it.
And THEN I found out that not only is this magazine fledgling and hasn’t published an issue yet, but they do not pay contributors (not a crime, of course, but I’d prefer paying markets). I decided against submitting to them at the same time as I decided I wanted to rewrite that story anyway.
“Her Mother’s Child” was the result. Complete at about 5,000 words, I’m having some friends read it, and if I get good feedback I’ll try submitting it. It features some mother/daughter themes, a fantasy world, girls who are attracted to other girls, and Goddess culture. It also features a challenging protagonist: a character who can’t speak and has to rely on her hands, her expressions, her occasional written words, and her family’s patience in order to communicate. (It’s not pointed out in the story, but the micro-culture here clearly doesn’t have any alternate communication systems like sign language, so she makes do.)
I was interviewed for an article in my state’s queer paper, and today it was published. I discuss asexual discrimination, our relationship with the LGBT community, my past and my present in the community, and a few asexuality facts and figures. The article: