Full Circle

Last night I finished the writing on the first draft of curse the darkness. It’s about 40,000 words, give or take, which is far from the longest single project I’ve ever written (that would be Keys to the Supernal Tarot, if you’re interested), but in many ways one of the hardest. I’m used to having an existing framework to hang my words on, an already-created world that I’m just adding some color or some depth to, rather than making it all up. And I’m very glad my wife is going to edit for me, because if I missed something important she’ll tell me.

But mostly, I’m glad the writing is done, some tweaks aside. Now for the really hard part – getting the photographs manipulated, the layout elements done, the layout completed and the business side of things handled. This is all new for me, and I’m nervous, but I’m also excited to finally put the Kickstarter up and hope that folks want to buy this game.

Today I went to a rally for marriage equality in Cleveland. Looking around, I saw people with lots of awesome signs. Some examples:

All You Need is Love

Lady Gaga

Pancakes & Zombies

No h8

As I listened to the speakers and I looked around, I thought of a page of photos I looked at back in April of 2010, which is here if you want to see it, that showed signs from Tea Party rallies. I saw those and I was appalled – not because of the mangling of the English language on the signs (though that was part of it), but because of the hate that these people were spewing. Seeing the photos today, some of them were indignant and some might even have been angry, but none of them were hateful. And that might be how you know you’re on the right side – if you can approach the cause with righteousness but without hate.

I wrote curse the darkness because I needed some catharsis. I wrote it to get rid of my own hate, because hate is not constructive. I wrote it to remind me that, as appealing as saying things like “let’s outlaw religion” or “let’s just take all the fundies and dump them in Texas and build a fence” are, they aren’t really helpful and they’re just as divisive as the horrible things that said fundies say. I wrote it because I had a vision in my head of a world where someone used hate and violence to try to save the world, and it didn’t work.

I don’t hate, not even the hateful. It’s hard to love them, mind, but I don’t have a commandment to do that. What I do have is, I think, an ethical obligation to let the extent of my aggression be a simple no. No, I will not let you tell me what to think, feel or believe. No, I will not sit by and watch you strip rights from my daughter, my wife, my girlfriend, my mother and all of my female friends. No, I will not let you deny the basic rights of our society to my friends and acquaintances who are gay, or bisexual, or transgendered. No, I will not let you legislate your religious beliefs, because as valid as you might think they are, they cannot be the basis for our laws.

And no, I will never, ever tell you that you can’t believe what you want, no matter how sad it makes me, no matter how much you hate. But I will gently encourage you to let go of the hate.

Anyway, today saw several hundred people, in downtown Cleveland, all light a candle. I’m really glad I was there.

(If you want to see more photos, they’re here.)

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