Wipe the tear, baby dear, from your eye-ee.
Though it’s hard to part I know
We’re quite happy to see you go…
As we learned from the Guardian yesterday, a small group of authors have thrown their toys out of the pram and flounced off the Blair Partnership’s list of clients because they couldn’t bully the literary agency into kowtowing to their inflated sense of entitlement by making some pointless, cringeworthy gestures.
Obviously, the Guardian doesn’t put it quite like that, going instead for more subtle, low-key humour and saying the four had “resigned after accusing the company of declining to issue a public statement of support for transgender rights”.
Wow! They actually accused them of that? How very, um, serious.
I mean, really? They resigned not because of anything the agency did but because of something they wouldn’t do, something there was no need to do. Further down the Guardian piece we learn that not only did the authors want a public statement but they wanted the company to “conduct staff training with the group All About Trans”, a group that promotes itself as “Positively changing how the media understands and portrays transgender people”.
But why? Had the Blair Partnership said or done anything, either publicly or internally, that could be construed as anti-trans? It seems not.
When I wrote my post about JK Rowling on Wednesday, I wasn’t aware that Tara Wolf – who proudly styles himself ‘Terfslayer’ – had, in his uniquely eloquent style, posted on the same topic on his Facebook page some days earlier. Alas, I only saw it after it had been widely shared on social media but I was pleased to see that Wolf appears to have turned over a new leaf.
He doesn’t say he wants to fuck JK up as he once notoriously said about ‘TERFs’. He doesn’t say he wants to smash her face in as he did about me earlier this year. Instead, he is inviting JK to debate him – and not publicly on some online platform or even by means of private electronic communication which, judging by this former Goldsmiths undergraduate’s command of written English, he would find rather taxing.
No, he is generously suggesting that their… let’s call it ‘exchange of ideas’… should take place publicly right in the heart of London, no doubt so that his devoted disciples can attend and learn as the brilliantly percipient Wolf demolishes the hapless JK with his dazzling oratory.
In an attempt to salvage something out of the now widely-reported Twitter error JK Rowling made last Friday, which must have bewildered many of her followers who’d never heard of me and which had unpleasant consequences for both JK and for me, comedy writer and ally, Graham Linehan, invited me and my husband, Alan Henness, to tell the story behind the tweet in the hope of reaching a wider audience.
Here is a link to a recording of our conversation. And below is the blog post I wrote earlier today.
Those who swarmed to this website last weekend and entered JK Rowling’s name in the search function would only have found a blog I wrote last year about the extraordinary attacks on her for shamelessly following a few feminists on Twitter and ‘liking’ gender-critical tweets.
Until now, I haven’t felt compelled to write anything more about her.
But when one of the most famous authors in the world refers to me in a tweet, I feel kind of obligated to say something, so here it is.