Disability Tropes 101: Karmically Disabled
Crafting characters / Disability Tropes 101

Disability Tropes 101: Karmically Disabled

I recently finished watching Season 2 of Dirk Gently and have been reflecting on the huge number of problematic disability tropes in the show, particularly around the invented disability “Pararibulitis,” but for this post, I want to focus on one particular trope that frequently appears in representations of disability, what I call the Karmically Disabled Trope. In … Continue reading

Disability Tropes 101: “The Genius Cripple”
Crafting characters / Disability Tropes 101 / Represention

Disability Tropes 101: “The Genius Cripple”

The Genius Cripple trope is pronounced in representations of disability in popular media and is generally grounded in the idea of a mind-body dichotomy. The notion of the mind-body dichotomy assumes that the mind and body are distinct from one another. This dichotomy is traced back to the philosopher Descartes, who suggested a distinction between … Continue reading

Disability Tropes 101: “The Crippled Sidekick”
Crafting characters / Disability Tropes 101 / Represention

Disability Tropes 101: “The Crippled Sidekick”

Throughout this series, I hope to bring to light some of the tropes around disability in order to (1) improve the representation of disabled people and (2) provide writing tips for those of you who want to include disabled people in your stories. Today’s lesson is about The Crippled Sidekick. This is a common trope of disability, … Continue reading

How do you make *this* sexy? Why representation in fiction matters.
Body positivity / Cerebral Palsy / chronic pain / Represention / sex / Sexah / Why Representation Matters

How do you make *this* sexy? Why representation in fiction matters.

“How do you make this sexy?” a reader asked me, gesturing to her wheelchair in the middle of one of my sex education Q&A sessions. The question stumped me because the answer isn’t an easy one. The short version is: You don’t. There isn’t anything inherently sexy about using a wheelchair or a walker, or having … Continue reading