during an eclipse

Greetings from what I’ll call a calm between eclipses.

I’m in the middle of determining my fate for the coming months and it is difficult and also work that must be done. I ~was~ so incredibly depressed just a week or so ago, and right now I am not. Thank the saints. How are you all doing?

Tomorrow's desire practice/smut writing workshop is on again in Clark Park (West Philly), from 2-4pm. Meet me in the shade on the Baltimore avenue side of the park. I'll have cold iced tea. Bring something to write with. We'll be doing a helpful worksheet and then working with what we get from there.

At the previous workshops I had everyone read pieces of smut stories out loud, but thanks to feedback, we’re just going to do more writing and less of that…vague public humiliation? (i say this jokingly)

Due to the incredible astro weather going on right now I am compelled to share that I’ve never been to a writing workshop in my life or had anything I’ve written workshopped, in what I assume is a regular experience if you have a Creative Writing Degree™ (your cohort critiques your writing on some basis of Western narrative convention and contemporary writing style as dictated by New York Times bestseller lists and publishing market controlled by blah blah blah). And I am wondering still how on earth one acts regular trying to get residencies. Shout out to Wesley for sending me hell of residency links that one time–I have not abandoned those.

Enough self-loathing, though. I finally put A CROSS THRU on my website, and there is an explicit call not to talk shit on yourself in there:

This is a time capsule of a 2016 me. I first put pieces of this spell in a personal zine titled SHEDDING, eventually fleshing out this longer version for METROPOLARITY‘S Style of Attack Report, both released in that year. From what I’ve heard since then, many people resonated with the words I set down here. In 2017, I spoke an altered version onto a guest track for SOLARIZED, a Philly hardcore band fronted by METROPOLARITY’s Alex Smith.

Meanwhile, I’ve been reading Nell Irvin Painter’s The History of White People and it is very good. I’ll come back with a review at some point. I’m also ~or was also~ reading Paul B. Preciado’s Testo Junkie: Sex, Drugs, and Biopolitics in the Pharmacopornographic Era …and it’s like… can the Donna Haraway stans take a chillpill on this DENSELY LAYERED THEORIZING and just tell a damn story? I honestly thought I’d be reading a lot more about taking T and less having to deal w/the portmanteau’ing of 5 post-structural media theories every other sentence. (It’s hilarious to me that Haraway herself has taken to giving narrative lectures, btw.)

Speaking of the cyborg theorist originator, I saw Haraway had a ‘pamphlet book titled Making Kin Not Population, with someone named Adele Clark. The little book struck me as cool, like hell fuckin yah no more white babies in this bitch, but you know– as I paged thru the thing (in the wonderfully air conditioned Penn Book Center), I kept seeing the word feminist. The book is like, it’s troubling that feminists don’t stop and think about how having babies is like, a problem for the environment. And I just wanted to go YOU MEAN WHITE WOMEN DONNA. Or I sure woulda wrote that in the margins if I bought the thing. And that brings me back to Testo Junkie… These very cyberpunk very futuristic very cyborg feminist intellectual writers SAY SOME INTERESTING THINGS but I wish they did more to ~really~ contextualize themselves in the trajectory of whiteness-as-constructed-by-empire. They mention being white and European here and there (in Testo Junkie), and I’m willing to bet the Haraway/Clark book mentions women of color or like, indigenous tribes or something… but can ‘we’ put in the extra effort to strongly articulate ‘ourselves’ away from the center of contemporary thought or some shit???? Do you feel me? Do u follow? These academic texts and radical gender autobiographical-theory books fall short––they fall within the confines of the academic intellectual. And as that tower crumbles, so do their arguments become incomprehensible.

Pshhhhhhhh yeah……….

The Prop Werx workshop was cute. LMK if you want me to come to your area and do it there. We broke down media messages of various kinds and it was Good. It was so hot that day tho and we weren’t in AC, so we didn’t get to crafting our own propaganda messages. I’ll be making a little report-back post with resources, more info, and links when I get the energy. It’s still hot right now.

Saints, please grant me the ability to know what and where to focus. May I leave my own self-loathing behind one day soon.

Take care of yourself, love.

@}-}-;———

Monk

small and subtle changes here and there

Hey everyone, this is a head’s up that the VENUS SATURN SQUARE SMUT READING slated for this Saturday the 29th is postponed due to lack of venue. My June has been busy, plus I been underworlding and working thru depressive episodes, as life goes. So I wasn’t able to get that shit nailed down in time–oh well. HOWEVER, the reading will happen this summer, and I’ll have plenty of hype & info to follow once all the TBA stuff is confirmed.

As for the smut writing/desire practice workshops, are you interested in coming to the one slated for this Saturday from 2 to 4pm? I should have made RSVPs. Is it too late to ask for RSVPs?? (Just so I don’t put my limited efforts into something few or no people will actually attend.) It’s looking like I’m gonna wing it and find shady area for students on Penn or Drexel’s campus.

For the two smut writing/desire practice workshops slated for July 13th and July 20th, we’ve got tentative space at Threshold Wellness at 440 East Girard Ave (a few blocks past Frankford Ave and across from Sketch Burger if u want a dank burger before or after). There are five steps and it’s likely we’ll be seated on cushions on the floor.

As for the PROPAGANDA WORKSHOP slated for July 4th– I’ve secured a venue thanks to a gay angel in my life. Meet me from 1 to 3pm this coming Thursday at 5213 Grays Avenue [Grays Ave Warehouse]. There are 2 flights of stairs and incense/fragrance is sometimes going on in the space (but won’t be for the workshop).

Also, I posted this to my IG profile highlights: How do we who are “mixed race” and treated as white by society work in unison against white supremacist empire without centering ourselves? If you are thinking about this shit too it’s time for us to convene. Please contact me so we can coordinate.

~ * ~

Remember when I was like I’M BOUT TO RECORD ALL MY LATEST STORIES JUST LIKE OLD TIMES GET READY FOR THE AUDIO TALES!!!! a few weeks back? Turns out living by a busy ass street a bus runs on by a busy ass intersection means all kinds of other sounds are in the background of what i’m trying to record, and that’s frustrating. Part of me is seriously like fuck it on the pristine vocal audio goals cause I don’t have energy like that to pursue a good recording place blah blah (only now it occurs to me to ask my friends with studios for some halp)… My tarot cards seem to continue to remind me that I can’t be doing shit alone. damn.

I wrote a tumblr-style reflection on the fate of All That’s Left zine. It’s an update on the series tucked inside a historical context/recollection of events that brought it to fruition in the first place.

I saw Moor Mother’s Circuit City play last week and it was a blessing. I got the latest issue of the beautifully produced Commune magazine in the mail and it’s better than the last. This wild/cool looking gender nonconforming thrift/consignment store in Savannah, GA ~ Civvies on Broughtin ~ recently picked up my (very internet famous five years ago) slogans for cyborgs patches.

I woke up crying from my dream this morning, and tonight my tendons ache and ache. I have more to communicate but this will have to do for now.

look up at jupiter in the sky and dream dream <3

(and see some of you this Saturday)

Monk

@}-}-;———

moving the newsletter & new workshop announcements

Greetings all,

I hope that as you receive this message, shortly before or after, something incredibly humorous to you occurs and brightens your spirits. A true laugh out loud moment.

My birthday was on the 6th and I had an excellent day, plus my reading party on the 1st was also fun! Thanks if you came or wanted to come. =)

As the title of this newsletter implies, I decided to move it over from the weirdly censorship loving tinyletter over to this substack service. So the look of things might be different in your inbox––I have little idea what to expect just yet. From the backend dashboard that I’m writing in, it’s very bland (but not dissimilar from tinyletter’s). I am annoyed that I can’t change the white background to a dark background but OH WELL.

Alex from Metropolarity and me were texting about substack the other day, and that made me decide to just go ahead and try it. The thing about substack is that you can set up a paid subscription tier if you want. A paid tier newsletter is a bit beyond me at the moment. I set it up so that you can pay if you’re feeling me like that, but right now I’m still in the ‘all my digital content should be free’ boat. I have a job that supports me financially so I don’t want to be charging people for shit, and you’re talkin to the bitch who one way or another puts all their content out for free on the net anyway, so hey. Hi. Hello.

Annnyway, that’s the update on that.

Now to the workshop information:

Text:

a smut reading and you’re invited

A zine release party & reading for the prototype edition of VENUS SATURN SQUARE smut zine. Come see area freaks read their smut from the zine out loud in full person &/or veiled in silhouette!

Open mic signups for those who wish to read their own favorite smut, trashy fanfic, and other conflicted erotic pieces.

This will be a casual affair for the lurkers and lovers. Bring a friend. Send questions to @cyborgmemoirs [me]

SATURDAY JUNE 29th, 6pm to 8pm, LOCATION TBA

Text:

venus saturn square workshops return

You’re invited to a smut writing practice space. For the curious shy embarrassed repressed fighting shame trouble expressing feeling desire saying no saying yes asking for what you want without fear etc. For ppl who have already written freaky shit. Low pressure but come ready to peel back a layer. Bring your favorite smut if you have any. We’ll write & practice reading out loud. Let’s submerge.

june 29 ~ july 13 ~ july 20

2pm to 4pm, LOCATION TBA

Text:

PROP WERX

Learn to read between the lines, hear what’s not said & more in this propaganda dissection workshop. We’ll pick apart ads, movies, headlines, conversations & other content with a simple, repeatable technique.

JULY 4th, 1pm to 3pm, LOCATION TBA

All these events are gonna be in Philly. I should have the locations and everything else pinned down in another week, so stay tuned for that information.

In the mean time, w00t. I watched POSE on netflix finally and it was so nice to watch a show centering trans women and gay people of color without having any violence or fucked up straight gaze objectification shit happening. The other night me and my boo watched some of the new Black Mirror, which again if you missed my previous critiques, has become trash propaganda in SO many ways ever since it’s first harrowing season. The first ep of this new jawn is [SPOILER ALERT]

like oh, ‘no homo’ cis man sexuality at its finest??? SLASH wow I been there role playing wild fantasy sex/tension with friends who I otherwise am not attracted to IRL… buuuut… I was just disappointed in the continual lack of explicit societal consequences––not even consequences, but lack of discourse? If you feel me, the episode is cool in that there’s no white people in the whole episode. It centers Black men and there’s no grotesque or explicit violence that happens to anyone (even when the police show up). But it’s centers cis heteronormative men and their relationships, and makes something of a safe space for them to explore their sexuality in role playing virtual space… and in the end, they’re still just some straight dudes with their wives and girlfriends and kids, and you know, just normal guy stuff no homo! Like dude’s rationalizing of RPing a woman and getting fucked is that it’s ‘like porn’… SIGH!

Then the next episode with that hostage situation and how it all ends, I JUST DONT KNOW MY FRIENDS IT’S NOT THAT GOOD IMO. Wasted opportunities. Normalizing surveillance culture and that deeeep total surveillance via social media giants working with government agencies (finding out everything about dude before the police do and then patching in a tap on his cell phone in real time??), depicting a sympathetic billionaire, a young Black man having sympathy in the end for a guy who threatened to shoot him over and over again, like…………….???????????????????????????

[END SPOILER]

In short, POSE is better sci-fi than motherfucking Black Mirror at this point.

In positive news, I saw some fireflies last night and was glad.

Till next time

-Monk

@}-}-;——

A monthly newsletter for city freaks and inbetweeners, gear 4 cyborgs, plus scifi author events & updates.

DESIRE HOPE DESPAIR

Welcome to the DHD newsletter. This is a continuation of my newsletter that started on tinyletter*, for fans of my speculative storytelling work as M. Téllez and in collaboration with my collective, METROPOLARITY.

Subscribe and look froward to my monthly missives where I share critical perspectives on science fiction & fantasy popular media, literary and art institutions, and technology, among other things. It’s relaxed. It’s conversational. You’ll know when I have workshop or reading/performance events coming up, or new zine/book, audio & gear releases, as well.

And please be my guest – tell your peoples if this is their wave. =)

Till next time.

- Monk

@}-}-;———-

*view tinyletter archive here

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