Today an interview-like blog post I prepared with SL Huang has gone live. They’re really thought-provoking questions and I really enjoyed responding!
[A]sexual people and their loved ones go to the bookstore, look for books about this topic, find a whole lot of nothing, and conclude that they’re alone or asexuality isn’t real. There’s a ton of power in a book being there for those people. I wanted it to exist, so I wrote it.
Read the interview:
I was interviewed in the University of Ottawa’s student paper, The Fulcrum. Some of the answers are about my new book, and some of them are just about asexuality.
Read it here:
Dannie Morin interviewed me for her “Awesomesauce Authors” feature on her blog, Left to Write. It’s a great little article on my experience as an asexual author, discussing my writer’s journey, what inspired me to write the book, my favorite and least favorite things about writing, what I love about my book and what was challenging about writing it, what has surprised me about the publishing journey so far, and a few fun personal questions.
Nicole Brinkley of YA Interrobang was kind enough to interview me for the column Dragons Raging: a feature that is for interviews of people from marginalized backgrounds.
We could definitely do with more asexual characters. Canon asexual characters in mainstream media are almost nonexistent, and characters interpreted or rumored to be asexual are often played as uninterested in sex/relationships for a specific reason (they’re an alien, they’re a villain, they’re ill, they’ve given up).
I would love to see both “issue books” about asexual people AND books in which characters are incidentally asexual. We need both of those things.
I was featured a couple places today. In The Varsity, Jasleen Arneja wrote about the WorldPride-affiliated asexuality conference and quoted me, using my book table photo as the featured photo. You can read the article in “Toronto hosts second-ever International Asexuality Conference” on their website.
And this was just a quick mention, but The Daily Dish decided to excerpt my The Toast article and that’s pretty cool:
“She’s Just Not That Into Anyone.”
I had the pleasure of attending the International Asexuality Conference in Toronto, Ontario, at the end of June 2014. As a WorldPride-affiliated event, we got some pretty amazing coverage and attention, with something like 300 registered attendees!
I was on the Asexual Leadership Q&A panel with Sara Beth Brooks and David Jay. Video here!
And later I was on a Visibility and Content Creation panel. You can see video of it here.
But what’s also great is it was the first appearance I made with my book!
I asked attendees to enter their names to win advance reading copies. Around fifty people entered and I got to talk to quite a lot of amazing people who were really excited about the book coming out. And there were a few who treated me like a celebrity or excitedly told me how much they like my videos online. How nice!
And after attending sessions and sitting on panels all day, I rounded out the night by appearing on Canadian national television.
Click to watch the video!
So yeah, that was a good experience. Hanging out with new and old friends was also fun–I was staying with asexual friends in a hotel, some of whom I’d known on the Internet before and some of whom I was getting to know for the first time. I didn’t stay for the parade–just the conference–but I’m glad I got to go.
Hooray for visibility and connections!
I appeared at the University of Virginia on Thursday, April 10, to talk about asexual relationships as part of the university’s Pride week.
My presentation in the University Chapel went well, including a slide presentation and an interactive talk. I got some really nice questions and got to hear from asexual students who attended my presentation. It was a positive experience all around!
You can see a recording of the presentation on my asexuality channel.
A piece about me has been published in Best magazine in the UK. It is included in the print edition as well as the abridged online version.
The article is written in first person as if I had written it. I did not. I also did not approve the article’s approach or content. I was promised a read-back and did not receive it. I also found out about its publication more than a month after it appeared.
The article contains factual inaccuracies about my life (I do not go out with friends in heels and a dress to have fun, and I would never imply that being asexual frees a person from the experience of jealousy), and its writing style not only contains British conventions I do not use, but employs reductionist and simplistic phrasing and philosophy I would never touch.
A read-back would have prevented this. A more comprehensive debunking is posted here on my blog.
The link to the article:
“I’m a 35 year old virgin”
Grainy scans of the print article (click to enlarge):
The pan-ivy queer conference IvyQ, held this time at Princeton University, invited me to be a speaker this year!
My workshop, entitled Inclusivity and Asexuality: Examining Asexual Participation in Queer Spaces, was held on Friday, February 7. In my afternoon workshop, I spoke to a small crowd about discrimination and prejudice and how it affects asexual people differently than it affects LGBT folks, and discussed how queer spaces can be more inclusive to asexual people and how asexual people can be more aware of the reasons behind opposition to their inclusion.
My program extract:
I really enjoyed talking to a few other asexual people and queer asexual allies, seeing the LGBT space on the Princeton campus, and meeting people who were actually familiar with my work! My asexuality workshop wasn’t the only slot on asexuality, either; David Jay was there as well, presenting a similar workshop the day after mine. (We didn’t get to see each other, though.) I was also lucky enough to be in the neighborhood of two of my writer pals, and got to meet both of them.
Yung Huang and Ronan O’Brien were the two volunteers who assisted me personally several times each and put up with my inability to find my way to anywhere, and even got me swanky shuttle service and a really beautiful, comfortable hotel room. The only thing that could have made the trip better was that the weather was too cold for my wimpy Florida self—there was snow everywhere!—and I didn’t get to record my presentation. All things considered it was a wonderful experience and I’m so glad I was part of it.
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!
Anyway, here is my interview: DiversifYA: Julie Sondra Decker.