26. Grad student and academic. Proud Seven Sisters alum. Reproductive health and infectious disease nerd. Native Texan with New England roots. Currently living in the Midwest. Occasional expat. Married to my high school & forever sweetheart. Mama. Things that make me happy: my puppies, preppy fashion, fangirling, horses, bikes, feminism, and zombies.
That makes sense.
I frequently recommend Newsflesh to people as The West Wing meets Scandal meets zombies.
The only real race indicator given on either of them is that George gets paler when she stays inside for a really, really long time, which is basically true of anyone with a skin who possesses melanin. I genuinely hope that if/when the movie* moves forward, at least one of the two is cast with a non-white actor, because that would be frankly amazing.
After Shaun and George, Mahir is my favorite. He’s just so dryly frustrated by everything around him, and it’s glorious.
I am so glad to have given him to you. :)
(*Yes, movie rights have been optioned; no, I have absolutely no information beyond that statement; no, I will not answer asks about the movie rights, I will delete them because they will just sad me; why will they sad me? They will sad me because I have absolutely no information.)
Oh wow, so much yes! Shaun and Georgia are adopted, there’s no reason why they have to be the same race. And I’m definitely brown but I get way way lighter if I stay inside. Even just going out into direct sunshine for two hours in Florida made me get tan lines. Thank you for letting me headcanon them as anything I wanted.
You have no idea how much Mahir and Dr. Patel mean to me. I have all the books in Kindle formatting so when I hit the paragraph about Dr. Patel inventing the blood test units, I tried to highlight/paste it over to a friend and couldn’t, so I typed it all out myself into the chat box because it was THAT important to me. That India wasn’t just a lost continent, just another ‘third world tragedy’. Something important and major came from an Indian doctor. You could have just had India be lost to show how terrible the uprising was but you didn’t. You made India important. You made Indians and the diaspora of displacement important and it just - I love the world building you do and that it’s worldbuilding, that it’s international. And I love that Mahir and Dr. Patel are competent and successful instead of just being comic relief or the ‘exotic other’.
Thank you. So very, very much.
I actually really want Shaun and Georgia to be of different races, if at all possible, when we get to the casting phase (if we get there). I love that I was able to write them so that they can be anybody. I’ve had people tell me about their personal Shauns and Georgias, and they have been all races, all appearances. It delights me down to my bones. (One of my favorites was a shy young man who told me his Shaun was trans, and explained his reasons, and was just so damn happy when I said there was nothing in the text to contradict it.)
You are why Mahir and Dr. Patel are there. You, and my friend Sunil, and all the other people I’ve met who needed to be a part of an awesome zombie adventure. I’m tired of the awesome zombie adventures only being for little slices of humanity. It’s not fair, and it’s not cool, and I do not appreciate it.
I’m so glad I was able to give them to you. Like, really. This is my joy, and it is you, and knowing that I’ve made a difference.
What is wonderful is that not only do you not shoot down these head-canons, but you create characters who are canonically us. I get so used to white-washed, cis-straight-washed characters, that I still occasionally double-take when I see it explicitly, nonchalantly mentioned that a character isn’t that ‘default’. Because it is still so rare. Because it is still so acceptable to compose worlds in which we do not exist. “Velveteen vs.” was the first non-erotic media I was ever exposed to that cast a transgender character as an actual person, and not as a token, or joke, or tool to advance the plot.
I both hated that it took so long for me to make her identity clear on the page, and loved that it meant everyone got to know her for her, without expecting any of those things, before that came out as a vital and core part of her identity. She didn’t hide it. She just doesn’t think it’s anybody’s business but her own.
When you send a girl home from school because her shorts or too short, or her clothing is immodest, you are telling her that hiding her body is more important than her education. You are telling her that making sure the boys have a distraction-free learning environment is more important than her education. In a way, you’re telling her that the boys are more entitled to an education than she is, and that isn’t acceptable.