geekery / guest bloggers

It’s All Geek to Me Blog Tour & Giveaway with JL Merrow

Today we are hosting JL Merrow as she celebrates the release of her new book: It’s All Geek to Me. She’s written a great post on a great topic and I hope you’ll all respond! 

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Geekier Than Thou

Hi, I’m JL (Jamie) Merrow, and I’m here today as part of the It’s All Geek to Me blog tour.

It’s great to be here on Smart Girls Love Sci-Fi (a sentiment I whole-heartedly agree with).

The giveaway: all commenters on the blog tour will be entered into a draw to win an ebook of their choice from my backlist, plus a $10 Amazon gift certificate. A winner will be chosen randomly on Monday, 17th February, 2014. Good luck! 🙂

And now I’d like to talk to you about geekiness.

There are many tests available on the interwebs to help you find out just how geeky you really are. The most comprehensive I’ve seen is The Original Geek Test, on Innergeek, which apparently contains 542 questions. I’d venture to say that if you’re prepared to take the time to answer that many questions on the subject, you probably don’t actually need the test. 😉

glasses

But why do we want to know? Well, I think that sadly, like most things in life, it all comes down to belonging in the club.

Let me tell you a story (I’m an author; it’s what I do. *g*) When I was a teenager I lived, breathed, ate and slept science fiction and fantasy. I could have told you Isaac Asimov’s entire life story, gleaned from the autobiographical snippets interspersed between his stories in anthologies and magazines. I’d read every Heinlein, Zelazny and McCaffrey the local library and second-hand bookstores could offer. I thought space travel was the most important thing ever. No question, I was a SF/F fan.

Then I went for an open day at a university I’d applied to for a place to read Physics. And I met a couple of other SF/F fans. I thought, fantastic! These are my people!

Except, no. They didn’t see it that way. You see, I’d never played Dungeons and Dragons. I wasn’t wearing a Tom Baker Doctor Who scarf. I wasn’t fannish enough, not for them.

I trudged home, discouraged. (And I didn’t go to their poxy university, either. So there. *blows raspberry*).

Nowadays, we have the phenomenon of the so-called Fake Geek Girl (and it almost always is Girl, not Guy, I wonder why? Not.) Leaving aside the inherent sexism, and although I have fun with the concept in It’s All Geek to Me, I’m still uncomfortable with the notion of “fake geeks” in real life. Does a person need to have read the entire Marvel backlist of comics before she’s allowed to enthuse over the films? Is even that level of knowledge adequate, without a comprehensive familiarity with DC for comparative purposes?

Can’t we all just love the things we love, to the degree to which we love them, without having to pass some arbitrary test of devotion?

What do you think? Have you ever been accused of not really being into the things you love? Or conversely, been annoyed by someone thinking a superficial level of interest entitles them to be opinionated on a subject that’s dear to your heart?

About Jamie

JL Merrow is that rare beast, an English person who refuses to drink tea. She writes across genres, with a preference for contemporary gay romance, and is frequently accused of humour. Her novel Slam! won the 2013 Rainbow Award for Best LGBT Romantic Comedy.

She is a member of the UK GLBTQ Fiction Meet organising team.

Find JL Merrow online at: www.jlmerrow.com, on Twitter as @jlmerrow, and on Facebook at http://www.facebook.com/jl.merrow

It’s All Geek to Me

ItsAllGeekToMe_600x900Jez is on a mission of mercy: to replace a tragically deceased comic book for his injured best mate, Tel. Venturing into the temple of geekdom itself, the Hidden Asteroid bookstore in London, Jez is bowled over by the guy behind the counter.

Rhys is the poster boy for hot geeks: tall, gorgeous, and totally cool. Jez is desperate to impress Rhys, but lacking in confidence after a bad break-up, so he bluffs his way through the comic book jargon—then dashes back to the hospital to beg Tel to teach him how to speak Geek.

Tel’s happy to oblige, and Jez is over the moon when Rhys asks him out. He’s even more thrilled when they discover a shared love of rugby, something he won’t have to fake for Rhys. The question is, how long can Jez keep up the deception—and what will happen when Rhys realizes he’s going out with Fake Geek Guy?

You can read an excerpt/purchase It’s All Geek to Me at: Riptide Publishing.

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37 thoughts on “It’s All Geek to Me Blog Tour & Giveaway with JL Merrow

  1. I’ve never been accused of not being geek enough, but I think it depends on the type of geekdom. I am a Trek, SF movies type of geek…SF book type. But comics…nope! I’ll read them, but I profess no real knowledge. I think only a geek stresses out over whether or not they are geek enough.

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    • I think you’re right about communities. I always feel a bit out of place with the old guatd scifi folks I run into at scifi cons. But its all geek to me.

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      • LOL! Yes, it’s great when communities have a strong sense of identity – but not so great when it tips over into viewing newcomers with suspicion.

        And thank you for welcoming me here today, Charlee! 😀

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    • I think part of the trouble with comics is that there’s so much to know! They’ve been around for a very, very long time. I think it’s great the way films have introduced sci fi to millions who’d never dream of picking up either a comic book or a classic sci fi book. 🙂

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  2. Pingback: Geekier Than Thou | JL Merrow

  3. Yes, I have been accused of not being geek enough. Doesn’t matter to me, though. I know I sway more on the romance side of sci-fi romance.

    Congrats on your new release, and all the best with your book tour!
    ~Jess
    jessicasubject.writer at gmail dot com

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    • I guess we all have our favourite ways of experiencing stories. I’m not a visual person – show me a picture and I’ll miss all kinds of stuff in it – so I love the written word, but I know some people have a much richer experience of pictures, whether moving or not, than I do.
      What I find really hard to understand is people who aren’t into stories in ANY form! 😉

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      • I know there are some people who are so into moment by moment life that story in traditional forms isn’t something they seek out, but story is everywhere (even in the office gossip). I’d be willing to bet most people enjoy story in some form. Maybe without realizing. My son can go on and on about the “story structure” in a wrestling story arc or the latest video game.

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  4. Oh, I’ve been the “wrong sort” of geek on many occasion. This comes down to me not towing the line when it comes to the “proper” OTP (Aeryn should have gone with Crais) or simply just siding with the wrong guy (it seems hoping Baal will get one over SG-1 isn’t the right attitude to have).

    And you know what? I don’t care any more. I like being the fan that loves all the wrong things, the one that goes against the flow. I’d rather be an individual than a sheep any day. 🙂

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  5. Being a female hockey fan can feel that way…even though I consider myself a scholar of the game and read a lot about it (and watch the games), I’m worried that if I ever tried to get into sports journalism or something, everybody would assume “puckbunny” or “Sharks superfan only” and not give me any credibility. There is a double standard sometimes (if I had a nickel for every guy who’s told me he just watches for the fights)…

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  6. Yeah, I sympathise with you there. There’s a British journalist, Lynne Truss, who wrote about men’s football for years and apparently got zero respect from all the male journos. She wrote a book about her experiences, called “Get Her Off the Pitch”. Ouch.

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  7. I’m completely out of the comics loop these days, apart from Manga Shakespeare and the now-finished Charley’s War reissues. Which makes me rather sad and long to live and/or work somewhere with a proper comic shop again.

    On the other hand, I am the go-to person for all things Man of Iron (as in the never-actually recorded Blakes 7 episode),

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  8. I’ve been accused of that or asked to prove my knowledge of various things that I’m into, but I just don’t care any more. There are certain things I like and certain things I don’t and I no longer feel the need to prove anything to anyone. I’m much happier that way. It’s All Geek to Me sounds great and I’m looking forward to it!

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  9. I’ve never been accused of being a geek. Smart,yeah. Geek, no. None of my friends can be considered geeky either, even if they’re into sci-fi and fantasy. Goth, yes, the girl next door type, yeah. I don’t really get what the big deal is. If you have a common interest,cool, if not it doesn’t mean you can’t convert the person. Anyway what’s wrong with hanging out with someone who has the same interest as you. Everyone is a noob at one point or another, just because they aren’t as hardcore a fan doesn’t mean they can’t eventually be.

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  10. No, I don’t remember being accused of being not geek enough. Probably because I didn’t try to run with the geeky crowd, such as comic books and D&D. I was into sci-fi tv shows but went to convention as a fan, not dressed up in costume.

    penumbrareads(at)gmail(dot)com

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  11. Pingback: Interview with Rhys of It’s All Geek to Me | JL Merrow

  12. I’m a totally fangirl and geek but when I say I love scifi I’m not talking Star Wars. I love Stargate Atlantis and the original Battlestar Galactica and Lost in Space – so in the scifi world, I’m kind of a lightweight. But that’s okay with me. I wear my fannish badges proudly!

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    • Good for you, Cynthia!
      Funnily enough, I was never all that struck on Star Wars, either. I liked it, but as someone who’d read a LOT of science fiction, it didn’t seem all that ground-breaking to me. Whereas I think for a lot of people, it was their first encounter of the 3rd kind, so bound to make more of an impression. 🙂

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