By Dan Wells | November 3, 2008 - 9:46 am - Posted in Uncategorized

Writing Excuses has donated an ad to the Whitney Awards, a program designed to recognize and support Mormon writers. That ad is now for sale on ebay: the winner will get an ad in an upcoming podcast heard by fives of thousands of people. If you want to advertise your book/website/podcast/etc., while helping out a good cause, this is a great way to do it.

This entry was posted on Monday, November 3rd, 2008 at 9:46 am and is filed under Uncategorized. You can follow any responses to this entry through the RSS 2.0 feed. Both comments and pings are currently closed.

17 Comments

  1. November 3, 2008 @ 10:00 am


    Good writing. Keep up the good work. I just added your RSS feed my Google News Reader..

    Matt Hanson

    Posted by Matt Hanson
  2. November 10, 2008 @ 12:38 pm


    In past podcasts, all members of the regular Writing Excuses podcasts have stated that they are members of the Mormon faith.

    Recently in California, the LDS church spent millions of dollars to pass proposition 8 which took away the rights of gay people to become married.

    I have been subscribing to the Writing Excuses blog and purchasing the works of Brandon, and contemplating purchasing items from Dan and Howard.

    Can you guys tell me if you support the position of your church please? I’ve reached the point where morally I can’t subscribe to the blog no matter how much I love your guys stuff or financially support you through purchasing your materials if you hold such views.

    To me it’s the equivalent of buying from people that would make black people drink from a separate fountain or eat at a separate lunch counter.

    If you could respond to this it would truly ease my mind on my future activities.

    Posted by Wavemancali
  3. November 10, 2008 @ 9:44 pm


    Wavemancali: The political situation is a frustrating one, because the LGBT activists have for all practical purposes declared that if you’re not for them you must be a bigoted, hate-mongering homophobe. I have seen no allowance for a middle ground.

    I maintain the right to believe that certain activities are sinful, though I also believe that accountability for the sin is lessened when the parties engaging in those activities honestly do not believe they are sinning. I don’t hate anybody based on their sexual preferences, and I believe that neither sexual morality nor immorality should be legislated. But if the LGBT community (or anybody else for that matter) can’t allow for Christians loving the sinner and shunning the sin, no meaningful discourse can take place.

    I read the LDS Church’s position on Prop 8. Most telling: LGBT Activists are on record as pushing to remove any legal distinction whatsoever between heterosexual and homosexual marriage, which, if taken to its logical conclusion, would make it possible (indeed likely) for the government to punish institutions for maintaining strict hetero-only marriage policies. Removal of tax-exempt status would probably be the starting point.

    Unfortunately, Prop 8 is a blunt instrument when applied to the purpose of protecting the Church from legislation that might be decades out. It’s like pouring concrete over a patch of yard in order to prevent one variety of undesirable plant. The LDS Church did not word Prop 8, nor did it have any say in how the Prop 8 was advertised (and I agree that some of the advertising was shameful.) The LDS Church did not contribute any money, and did not provide any sort of benefits, in-kind or otherwise to Church members who did. Some Church members obviously contributed money and time, but Brandon, Dan, Jordan, and I were not among them. We didn’t contribute, and we didn’t vote. I personally think it is a messy pre-emptive strike that won’t work well.

    I believe that the interests of religions might be better served by legislation that proactively and very specifically protects their beliefs and practices, but I Am Not A Lawyer. In the interim, I think it might be wise for the LGBT community to push for legislation allowing Civil Unions to take place without a cohabitation prerequisite, at which point there would be no difference between prerequisites and the concomitant legal protections for married heterosexuals and for civil-unioned homosexuals. But again, I Am Not A Lawyer.

    As I pointed out at the beginning, the LGBT movement has demonized anyone who attempts to take a moralistic position. They’ve labeled them all as haters, bigots, and homophobes. Discourse in the face of that kind of absolutism is pointless.

    I have friends, business associates, and customers who I know to be homosexuals, and I feel their pain. I wish the political environment was such that it was easier for us to find common ground.

    Posted by Howard Tayler
  4. November 10, 2008 @ 10:08 pm


    @Wavemancall

    I understand where you’re coming from (I really do, I’m a lesbian who recently married my partner) but I feel very strongly that this is unfair.

    I support and respect your right to make political choices about where you put your time and money. I certainly don’t spend my money on books by Orson Scott Card – who called gay marriage “the end of democracy in America” (Really? My marriage is ending democracy? Seriously? Cool! I am all-powerful!) and campaigned for funds to go to Prop 8.

    But I would caution you to remember that most major religions in this country are against gay marriage. You probably wouldn’t have much to read if you didn’t read authors who are Catholic, Baptist, (most branches of) Jewish, Pentecostal, etc. And I’m assuming you don’t query every author you read about their personal politics, philosophical leanings, and ask them to publicly declare their non-allegiance to their houses of worship.

    Howard, Dan, and Brandon have never said anything homophobic on their podcasts, their websites don’t scream anti-gay messages, and they are not spokespeople for an anti-gay agenda. Whatever their personal thoughts on this issue, they haven’t made attacking my right to marry a campaign of theirs.

    Let me preface my next sentence by letting you in on the fact that I re-typed it six or seven times. I believe that it’s easy to single out Mormons on this issue. And in the last few weeks I have been getting increasingly uncomfortable about the way my beloved lesbian and gay community is talking about this small persecuted religious group. Wednesday night, people I call friends are organizing a protest that I believe thousands will attend outside a Mormon Church in Manhattan. As a Jew, I get a bit fussy about people being attacked because of their religion.

    Yes, Mormons gave millions to the Prop 8 campaign, but I’ll bet if you look at the Massachusetts proposition a few years back the same could be said about Catholics. My wife is Catholic, so I long ago decided that directing my anger there was fruitless.

    My point (if I’m coming to one, I hope I’ve been clear) is that I don’t think you’d be asking this question to our podcasters if they were members of almost any other (similarly politically-aligned) religion. And I would encourage you to ask yourself why individual Mormons deserve this disparate treatment.

    You and I, and other gays and lesbians, better than most people, understand what it is like to be hated, misunderstood, and publicly shamed. Right?

    Now I come here for my weekly dose of writing excuses (and boys, you are so very late posting this week’s episode… grrr…) so I hope I haven’t annoyed folks with this long off-topic response. But I felt like another lesbian or gay listener was the right person to respond.

    Posted by Eliyanna
  5. November 10, 2008 @ 10:16 pm


    Hmmm… Guess I was typing while Howard posted that. I would feel so much better about having written what I just wrote if Howard hadn’t just referred to me as a homosexual. So clinical.

    I’m a lesbian. Sound it out Howard, it sounds nice, lezzzbeeein. :)

    I think there is a lot going on both sides of the aisle here. And while I could contribute a point by point on Howard’s concerns about churches losing tax exempt status (just not gonna happen, and as a government insider, I do know something about this), or why civil unions are kinda sorta exactly like separate but equal. But I’m going to restrain myself!

    BECAUSE: This is not why I come here. Oh dear God, please don’t let this devolve.

    and BECAUSE: Even though I was trying to set the stage for Howard, Dan, and Brandon not answering this question (since I thought it was innapropriate for them to be put on the spot in the first place), it is:

    Asked, and Answered.

    Can we get back to science fiction, fantasy, and horror now?

    Posted by Eliyanna
  6. November 10, 2008 @ 10:23 pm


    @Eliyanna: Thank you. I really appreciate your post on the matter. It was with quite a bit of trepidation that I posted my initial response because I really do care what other people think of me. It’s nice to know that in spite of differing beliefs there is some common ground to be had.

    Of course, I suspect we cross-posted, and you hadn’t read my post before posting your own because you were carefully refining yours. I hope that now that you HAVE read it you still feel the same way.

    This post has been brought to you by the Internet: Fostering miscommunication for over thirty years!

    Posted by Howard Tayler
  7. November 10, 2008 @ 10:26 pm


    That was excellent, Eliyanna.

    As for the podcast, Jordo is currently swamped and dying, but I have it on good authority that I’ll be able to post the new episode in about 20 minutes. Thank you all for your patience.

    Posted by Dan Wells
  8. November 10, 2008 @ 10:29 pm


    W00t! Another cross-post!

    Sorry, Eliyanna. Rest assured, my use of the word “homosexual” was not meant in a derogatory way. As an outsider I have no clue which words brook subtle offense, so I just use the clinical ones, eschew the obvious conflagratory, demeaning ones, and hope I don’t get misunderstood.

    This post has ALSO been brought to you by the Internet: replacing face-to-face dialog for over a decade.

    Posted by Howard Tayler
  9. November 10, 2008 @ 10:29 pm


    @Howard

    I have a very funny feeling that we cross-posted on our last TWO posts. This is amazing to me. The Internet is astounding.

    Well, as you can see in my last post, during which you wrote your last post (I think), I do still feel the same way. And your post has not changed my mind, despite my new burning desire to buy you a beer and work out the kinks on a few points.

    More writing excuses! Less of this stuff!

    (And Howard, if you are still there, for the love of all that is holy, could you post the next episode?)

    Posted by Eliyanna
  10. November 10, 2008 @ 10:31 pm


    I—can’t—take—the—-cross—-posting—–

    My mind is exploding!

    Posted by Eliyanna
  11. November 10, 2008 @ 10:35 pm


    Dan’s got the next update. I have nothing.

    Which is funny, because I’m the only one of the four of us with an actual degree in Sound Recording. But I got it 15 years ago, before the MP3 revolution, and long before “pod” meant anything to the audio world.

    And that’s why Jordo is in charge. He may not be lettered in this stuff, but he’s currently studying it. All I do is argue with him over mic placement.

    Posted by Howard Tayler
  12. November 10, 2008 @ 10:37 pm


    Oh, and beer is yet another one of those things Mormons consider a sin, though I do accept offers of non-alcoholic beverages.

    Interesting fact: Utah voted to repeal Prohibition, but that didn’t stop us from passing state laws watering down the good stuff.

    Posted by Howard Tayler
  13. November 10, 2008 @ 10:38 pm


    You know I sent Dan a bacon present last week?

    I don’t think he understood the arrangement. I send him gifts. He ensures that my podcast is posted in a timely fashion.

    Jeez.

    Posted by Eliyanna
  14. November 10, 2008 @ 10:41 pm


    When I finally get to Utah I will look you all up and buy a nice round of Shirley Temples!

    Posted by Eliyanna
  15. November 10, 2008 @ 10:44 pm


    Actually, I suspect we owe you a round of drinks. I’ll buy. :-)

    Posted by Howard Tayler
  16. November 10, 2008 @ 10:56 pm


    I just posted the new episode. Cease your mutually-congratulatory cross-posting and go listen.

    Posted by Dan Wells
  17. November 11, 2008 @ 1:35 pm


    @Howard

    Thank you so very much for a) allowing my post to actually go through moderation and b) answering it in the honest and dignified manner that you did.

    I respect the LDS church’s right to preach that homosexuality is against god, it’s a tenant of your religion. All the power to you. I respect the right of the Catholic church to do the same. I would never vilify a religion for their beliefs.

    I’m a straight atheist happily married for 13 years. I have no vested interest on gay people marrying. It will personally not affect me in any significant way.

    I would fight for your right to practice your religion just as much as I will fight for the right of gays to marry because I believe that these are rights that everyone should have.

    Thank you for letting me know your stance. I’ll happily continue subscribing and purchasing knowing that while you may not agree with the gay marriage that you didn’t vote to take away the rights of others.

    Posted by Wavemancali