Welcome to our new fiction editor

// 8 January 2018

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While Lusana has been doing excellent work on our non-fiction section, our fiction editor role has remained vacant for a number of months. I am, therefore, delighted to announce that we now have a new fiction editor: Sarah Kiddle! Please join me in giving her a warm welcome. Here is some more information about Sarah, in her own words:

Sarah Kiddle is an intersectional feminist and is particularly interested in stereotyping in popular culture (especially in fiction and children’s books), the pornification of society, language, education, mental health and feminist parenting. In between studying for an MA in Creative Writing and nurturing a love of books and nature in her toddler, Sarah is a freelance copywriter, copy-editor and proofreader. She also worked for nine years as an English teacher and believes that innovative educational initiatives could help tackle many feminist issues. In any spare moments, Sarah can be found either eating cheese, daydreaming about travel, enjoying the great outdoors or escaping into a book – which may or may not be particularly literary. She is humbled by the wit and wisdom of other feminists on a daily basis, and is thoroughly thrilled to be working at The F-Word. She can be found on Twitter at @sckiddle

You can pitch Sarah with ideas for the section at sarah@thefword.org.uk You can also find out more about pitches and other fiction-related info in The F-Word fiction Facebook group.

Sarah elaborates on the kind of themes she is particularly interesting in hearing about below:

Hello!

I’m very excited – and honoured – to be The F-Word’s new fiction editor. As a lifelong reader and feminist (before I even knew the word!), I believe that fiction is a vital window onto the world we live in: it gives us access to lives we might have had, or aspire to have, or imagine having, increasing our knowledge and empathy and wisdom as it does so.

Fiction is also a tool for inspiring, educating and simply entertaining us. I’d like the F-Word’s fiction section to reflect the many roles that stories play in our lives – from comforter to catalyst – and what they tell us about women as they are and as they are perceived, particularly the experiences of marginalised groups whose voices often go unheard elsewhere.

With that in mind, I’d love to hear your ideas, so if you have something you’re burning to say or explore about books – reviewing a particular author, series or seminal work; looking at issues women face in the publishing world; or exploring an aspect of women’s lives in fiction.

While I have many ideas for a broad and dynamic section, two areas I’d love submissions for in the first instance are:

* Feminist and intersectional critiques of well-known books of any genre – perhaps looking at how the women portrayed reflect the society of their time, or surprising role models (or the opposite!) in literature. Can a feminist reader justify enjoyment of certain books? Does the book hold a particular relevance to your feminist life?

* Reviews of children’s and young adult (YA) books from a feminist standpoint, and explorations of feminist and intersectional issues within them. What lessons and assumptions do young children absorb from the books we read to them? Should we continue to read childhood ‘favourites’ with gender stereotypes to our children? What books provide children from marginalised groups with inspiring role models they can relate to?

I’m also keen on hearing from women from minority or marginalised groups – and pitches about books which reflect those experiences.

Finally, it would be great to keep up with current releases. You may want to focus your review on how female characters are represented, how a male author writes women, or a relevant feminist or intersectional theme that has been explored – or something else! But these should be books from 2018, to give us bookworms a priority list for great new books (or a warning for those to avoid!).

I look forward to hearing from you!

The picture at the top of the page is a close-up shot of the right-hand side of a red typewriter. The brand ‘Royal’ can be seen on the top of the typewriter and the keys on the far right-hand side are somewhat blurred, which is an intentional stylistic choice by the photographer. Image shared under a Creative Commons licence.

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