This is the Field Guide to Mo. I mostly post fanfic and talk about fanfic here, but occasionally I talk about my life or make references to my family. If people just want to read the stories, perfectly fine with me. If you want to know what I'm talking about the rest of the time, the following might help. I think a bunch of folks already know this stuff...
1. I'm a lesbian. I came out in 1974. I'm out everywhere - work, home, online. I sometimes forget that it doesn't necessarily show in the fiction or journal posts. Occasionally people write to me thinking I'm a gay man or a straight woman. Nobody seems to think I'm a straight man (although some think I'm married and closeted).
2. I'm a mother. I have three kids - Doran (10/25/88), Kendra (10/6/92) and Zara (4/16/95). That's boy, girl, girl in case it's not clear from their rather unusual names. I sometimes talk about them without specifying who they are, saying things like "Doran and I want to see that movie."
3. I had the kids with my ex, their other mother, via donor insemination. We took turns giving birth. We both breastfed all three. We somewhat identify as attachment parents. We were married for over a quarter of a century (I was a child bride) and have been divorced for 4.5 years now. Neither marriage nor divorce was recognized by our heterosexist government, which has presented problems for us at times. We live walking distance from each other and coparent. The kids have two homes and are generally with each of us half-time.
4. I live in New York City, in Brooklyn, in a neighborhood called Park Slope. I was born in Winnipeg (central Canada, capital of Manitoba), grew up in North Dakota and Connecticut, lived for five years in Montreal and one in Albany, NY. I've been here since 1980 and consider myself a New Yorker now. I'm very happy to provide local details to anyone writing New York-based stories, if you have questions about geography or culture or weather or whatever.
5. I write X-Men movieverse fanfic. I think that's the one thing anyone reading this journal knows, since it started as a fannish one. I write slash, mostly Scott/Logan. I consider my fiction adult fiction, not only (or even primarily) because there is explicit sex in it. I deal with a lot of adult themes - challenges of long term relationships, career issues, parenting, power dynamics in relationships, balancing need for community and individual expression, risk/safety, and so forth. I'm not very romantic in my approach to life and I think it shows in my fiction.
6. I break a lot of fanfic “rules” or conventions. Although I write slash, I have a lot of heterosexual characters in my fiction. Some of them are in couples. Some of them even have sex in the stories. I kill off characters without warning. I write a lot of original characters, too, although I think anyone who reads my fiction will agree that none of them are Mary Sues.
My main pairing aside from Cyclops/Wolverine is Northstar with an original character – a reporter named Adam Greenfield. The other couples I’ve written the most about are heterosexual – Mac and Heather Hudson, an OC couple named Arthur and Wendy Ringsmith, and Jean Grey and another original character - Sasha Cherevko. I try very hard to make everything about my stories realistic except for the mutant powers. I prefer to read fiction that sounds like real life to me, too, and I find that some of the conventions of fanfic work against that.
7. I have a lot of quotes and literary allusions in my stories. My version of Cyclops is an English teacher as well as a superhero (As he explains at one point, “It’s kind of a strange job. Sometimes I teach English; sometimes I save the human race.”) The stories are full of quotes from the classics, and some moderns. I publish literature guides to go with the stories, with urls to read the poems, plays, and books where possible. I totally love it when people write to me about the literature.
8. I’m a bit of an old-style dyke. I love women’s community, lesbian-and-gay community (I’m too old-style to be comfortable saying “queer community”), political activist community. I spent a few years doing AIDS activism fairly, well, actively. I spent a lot more years doing activism around gay parenting issues. I was a founder of one of the largest gay parenting organizations in the country. I’ve done a lot of public speaking and essay writing on lesbian and gay parenting. Every once in a while one of those old essays shows up somewhere new.
My activism shows up a lot in my fiction, too. I explore coming out issues, issues of gay civil rights, and so forth. It was the queer subtext in X-Men, the way that mutants can be viewed as analogs of lesbians and gay men, that first attracted me to the fandom.
9. I'm a Jew. I'm very Jewish-identified although not very observant. I belong to an egalitarian Conservative shul, which I love. I'm not shomer shabbos and I don't keep kosher, but I do celebrate shabbos and the holidays in some fashion, am active in my shul and Hebrew School, continue my Jewish education through adult ed classes and reading.
I think my sense of ethics, my sense of family and my general approach to life are very much shaped by my Jewishness. Jewish stuff sometimes shows up in my fiction. Adam (Jean-Paul's lover) is a Jew, and some of the stories touch on his ethnicity. One, "Different from All Other Nights," more than touches, dealing with J-P coming to Adam's mother's house for Pesach.
10. I’m older than most people in fandom. I turned 50 in September. That said, I’m relatively new to fandom. I never heard of fanfic until October of 2000 and wrote my first X-Men story series in November of 2000. Writing and reading fanfic, writing and reading meta-discussion, occasionally watching vids – these are my fannish pursuits. I’m interested by the breadth of activities engaged in by fans, but probably won’t branch out.