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Brian Cortijo
Works at Hunter College
Lives in Brooklyn, NY
225 followers|1,267 views
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Brian Cortijo

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Okay, so this is weird. Apparently, I actually have fans of some sort, and one of those fans is actively trying to get a company to do something based on his opinion of my work.

Not that his actions are weird. Just the feeling, on my end, is... strange.
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Brian Cortijo

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I'm growing a little tired of having to argue that diversity of representation in fantasy fiction does not mean graphic sex scenes that might trigger your "ick factor." It's about real people in real situations that (sometimes) happen not to fit the heteronormative model.

Also, I've reached a point where I'm not especially concerned with people's "ick factor." Some boys like to kiss boys. Get over it.

Love,
Your Hetero Friend
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Oh one more, one of my favorite games is Avernum. Just about every version of the game has a side job involving a same-sex couple, usually delivering a letter from one to the other that leads to them being reunited. I remember the first time I realized what was going on and it was powerful and cool.
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In exactly one week, I shall be sitting (sleeping) in the airport waiting corral, getting ready to board my flight to Gen Con. I'm thinking of doing a few quick Gen Con advice posts. Anyone think they'd be interested in those?
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Brian Cortijo

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Last night's dessert project: Häagen-Dazs raspberry sorbet inside chocolate creme Oreos. I dub them RaspbOreos. Jen just thought they were delicious.
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Found this again this a.m. and had to wonder what you'd have to do for a Robert E Howard/Conan honorific to make Hyperboreos? ;)
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Brian Cortijo

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Projects Accession, Battery and Corona all turned in. Tomorrow begins Project: Detox.
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Brian Cortijo

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Dear People Who Buy The Stuff I Write,

Thank you. You rock. I quite literally could not do the things I do--write this much, get paid to do it, and do things like go to GenCon and participate in this hobby we share--without you.

But please: if you buy something, don't post it to some site or bit torrent it. Continued interest in my work is one of the factors publishers use to decide how authors like me continue to get work. And if someone can download my writing rather than paying for it, that's interest the publisher never sees. Even if the publisher is the only one that stands to make any money off continued sales, those sales are how I get more work, and getting more work is what I'm looking for.

If you downloaded something, and then decided to buy it: well thanks, I guess. I'd still appreciate it if you'd delete the torrent file or took down your "fair use web-based archive" (which isn't fair use, thankyouverymuch) or otherwise made it so that you're not giving away my work for free.

If you happened to download something I wrote and didn't like it and didn't go back and pay the publisher for it, I would appreciate it if you'd kindly delete it. Or pay for it. But pick one, please. At best, you're enjoying something you didn't pay for. At worst, you're continuing to disseminate the product as well.

I'm not going to address the people that obtain the work that I and others like me do, and freely share it with the world with no intention of ever paying us, or the companies that painstakingly edited and developed our text, the artists that brought our words to glorious visual life, the cartographers that had to struggle through my childlike sketches to make those beautiful maps, or anyone else attached to the product. I have a lot of thoughts about activities like these, but I'll keep them to myself for now.

But for you folks that buy my stuff--even if it's only some of it, even if it's something I co-wrote or had a small hand in, if it's something you bought and thought was incredible, or if you completely trashed it to your friends, loved ones, and anonymous acquaintances online, please have my heartfelt thanks. You are awesome. Keep up the good work, and I'll do my darnedest to keep up mine.

Love,
Brian
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I am going with completely delusional :)
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Have him in circles
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Brian Cortijo

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I have read a disturbing number of reports recently about women who have been subject to unobservant approaches, creepy behavior, harassment, or downright sexual assault. Sometimes it’s in the context of a large gathering (like a gaming convention), and other times it’s just been on the train, but it feels almost like there’s something in the water these days.

So, in the interest of the public good, let me share a few pointers with my friends:

-If a woman makes any indication that she is not okay with your company, do your best to leave her alone.
     This one should go without saying, but it’s going to be said anyway. Sometimes people don’t want to be approached. Sometimes, they especially don’t want to be approached for more-than-friendly purposes.

-No one owes you a conversation, an explanation, or absolution.
     If anyone (male or female) says that they’re busy, or reading, or don’t want to talk—or even just flat ignores you—leave it alone and walk away. If someone tells you something you did made them uncomfortable, apologize, and then leave it alone and walk away. If you are in an enclosed space, and absolutely cannot walk away (a crowded train, for example) try to lean away, avoid both eye contact and physical contact. Don’t stare. Don’t look for an opening to explain yourself. Don’t hope for an explanation about what you did wrong. And don’t wait for someone to tell you that what you did was okay.

-Never, ever, put your hands (or face, or any other body part) on someone that you’ve just met that isn’t making an overture to do the same.
     This covers ranges of behavior, from strokes of the arm to hugs to shoulder rubs (“everybody likes their shoulders rubbed, right?” Wrong.) to outright sexual advances. No. You don’t get to make the first move.

-The world is not a meet-cute.
     Look, a lot of people I know are writers, or would-be writers, or gamers, or otherwise engage in more enjoyment of literature, movies, and fantasy than some members of the population. I know that we’re all writing our own stories in our heads. But most of the time, the pretty girl that you’re sitting next to on the plane is just hoping to make her connection in Chicago on time. She’s not available, or doesn’t want to be available, until and unless she indicates otherwise. Please keep your hands on your side of the arm rest, thanks.

-A woman sitting alone very likely doesn’t want your company or your protection.
     If a woman has found herself alone in a bar, or at a party or club, it’s very likely that she’s not looking to be approached. If she’s buried in her phone, or looking at the front or bathroom door, or checking her watch, she’s not looking for conversation.
    Conversely, if you see a creeper, just standing nearby—within earshot, but not getting involved—is usually enough to scare them off. Unless someone makes eye contact with you and some indication to come over and get involved, or there's an obvious threat of imminent violence, don’t approach. Because then the creeper is you.

-Just because someone is talking politely with you does not mean they are romantically interested in you.
     Posted without comment.

-Welcome to ConCon 2012: The Wrath of Cons
     A note about conventions. While it’s true that it’s fairly likely that someone to whom you are attracted at a convention shares some of your interests, that’s not an invitation to ‘cold call’ approach a woman. And it’s not an excuse to keep pressing the issue if she makes an indication that she’s not interested in talking to you.
      If you are at a convention and you do see someone you might be interested in, don’t follow that person around. If you strike up a conversation and she’s cagey about what events or games she’s interested in, or what hotel she’s staying in, or where her friends are meeting her, she’s not interested in talking to you. If she says “see you at the Sculpey Panel,” then you might have made an acquaintance. Maybe you should sit where you can see her at the next panel, but not right behind or next to her (no, I don’t care how good she smells…). If you’re interested in chatting with her later, maybe walk up and say that you’d like to chat later on in the convention, if she has some free time, offer your number, and walk away. If she doesn’t call or text, well, at least you had a brief but enjoyable acquaintance talking about miniatures sculpting. If she does, maybe you’ll chat later—but don’t be surprised if the conversation is all about miniatures sculpting. Conventions might be short experiences, but that’s not an excuse to behave in overdrive.


In short: Be polite. Be courteous. But most of all, be attentive to the signals (verbal and nonverbal) that you’re being given. Think about how you sit on the bus or train or airplane when you want to indicate that you’d like to be left alone. Is this person sitting that way? Maybe she would like to be left alone.
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Brian Cortijo

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So, I've been told I can talk just a little bit about a secret (online) meeting I had a few weeks ago concerning the Forgotten Realms. Interested parties should check out this thread on Candlekeep.

http://forum.candlekeep.com/topic.asp?TOPIC_ID=16812
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Brian Cortijo

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I'm just getting around to the tales of the serial harasser/convention stalker/future defendant from Readercon. This behavior is NOT OKAY, people. Boundary breaking, violation of personal space, and insisting on your right to be heard so you can apologize are all things not to be done.
Given the recent incidents and controversies in gaming, at conventions, and in the general Geekspace, I think it's past time for a comprehensive harassment policy for conventions.
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Brian Cortijo

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Power, determination, cooperation, beauty.

Artists, please take note: this is what warrior women look like.
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Brian Cortijo

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Just released today. Tell your friends!
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Brian Cortijo

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So, should I make a Facebook page for my writing? Go full-on website? Or trust that all eight people that are looking for information for my stuff will know how to find it already?
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I'm personally against anything being on just Facebook, as I have long since turned my back on the site.
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People
Have him in circles
225 people
Chris Tulach's profile photo
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Richard Lee Byers's profile photo
Owen Stephens's profile photo
Work
Employment
  • Hunter College
    Public University Lackey, 2007 - present
  • Freelance
    Game Designer, 2003 - present
  • CVS Corporation
    Wage Slave, 2005 - 2007
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Male
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I'm a gamer, writer, and overall nerd.
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Brooklyn, NY
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