…as it pertains to fantasy and science fiction, of course. Over at the Black Gate site, regular contributor Theo posted an essay today explaining why it’s okay for readers to like different types of writing and for writers to write different things. I tried to say something similar a few months ago in a post entitled “In Defense of Traditional Gender Roles in Fantasy“. The post, while not completely sinking like a stone, didn’t get much response. Theo, on the other hand, has summarized much of my argument in a more concise and eloquent manner. This particular flare up of controversy (everything I’ve seen so far is too civil to be called hostilities) was started when the Guardian over in the UK did a completely unscientific survey of it readers, asking them to name the best works in the SF genre. When the results came back skewed heavily towards male authors, the label of Sexist began to be leveled at science fiction, and by extension fantasy. I’d like to respond at length, but to some extent I already did. I’ve got some deadlines breathing down my neck (which is why I’ve not been posting as much lately), so I’ll just encourage you to go read what Theo has written. If I can find the time, I’ll throw my two cents in.