Current post

Consent is Magical

If you have been reading the Reg Rawlins, Psychic Detective series, you probably noticed that the first few books explore the issue of consent from a unique viewpoint. In the magical community of Black Sands, Reg finds herself attracted to and yet at odds with warlock Corvin Hunter. Corvin has magical abilities Reg does not understand, since it is considered to be in poor taste to discuss them.

“… such things are just not discussed in polite company. Men like Corvin… well…” She shook her head. “What they do is unspeakable.”

A Psychic with Catitude

In the most recent release, A Catastrophic Theft, Reg ends up testifying against Corvin before a warlock tribunal and finds that her modern view of consent is something completely foreign to the community, who in spite of modern conveniences are living with attitudes that are several hundred years old. She finds herself the target of some serious victim-blaming and shaming.

Reg saw the trap he’d laid for her. A hot flush rolled over her face. “Why are you blaming me?” she demanded. “I’m the victim here! I told him I did not yield my powers to him even if he managed to make me say yes with his magic. I told him no over and over again, and he still glamoured me!”

“Miss Rawlins, this issue of consent seems to be one that you hold some very strong opinions about.”

A Catastrophic Theft

I won’t give too much away. I don’t want to spoil the books before you have a chance to read them!

Modern day (non-magical) consent

It has been interesting to watch the transition in attitudes and laws over the past couple of decades. Western society has made some significant strides in redefining sexual assault and the expectation that (potential) partners have each other’s consent at all times. Consider that the United States did not even criminalize marital rape in all states until 1993. Historically, a woman was the property of her husband and did not have the right to refuse sex.

We will, I hope, continue to advance in this area despite some world leaders who do not appear to understand the concept of consent.

Resources

I looked around for some good resources on modern laws of sexual consent and guidelines for those who are trying to understand the new paradigm, and these are a few of the pages that I thought worth looking at.

Because Google knows where I live, my top hits were Canadian sites, and I particularly liked this one from the Edmonton Police Department. It is not as victim-centric as a lot of the other pages I looked at, but gives constructive help in communication to ensure that you have your partner’s consent at all times. Unique to this page are their “examples of no.”

  • “Not now” 
  • “Maybe later”
  • “I have a boy/girlfriend”
  • “No thanks”
  • “You’re not my type”
  • “*#^+ off!”
  • “I’d rather be alone right now”
  • “Don’t touch me”
  • “I really like you but…”
  • “Let’s just go to sleep”
  • “I’m not sure”
  • “You’ve/I’ve been drinking”
  • SILENCE

It is important to note that this list includes “silence.” A number of people that I have heard from over the past year have talked about freezing up when they feel threatened. As much as we would like to declare what action we would take in a threatening situation (punch them in the face, walk away, etc.,) in the face of danger or an assault it is a natural human response to freeze. I have heard things like “Couldn’t he tell I was frozen?” “I was just lying there with tears running down my face” or “Didn’t they even care that I wasn’t participating?” Read Bea Currie’s heart-wrenching Silence is Not Consent.

One of the sites that I read suggested partners say things like “Can we slow down?” or “Can we stop?” if they felt uncomfortable and did not want to continue. But I feel that this phrasing, which is intended to be polite and non-confrontational, is not adequate. “Can we” suggests that it is a request, and that it can be answered with “yes” or “no.” I feel that we need to get away from the notion that we need to be polite and concerned about not hurting the other person’s feelings. Saying “stop” or “no” is not rude, blunt, or offensive. If your partner considers you a [insert ugly word here] for saying no, then maybe it’s best to part company.

Rather than “Can we slow down?” why not “Slow down”? Rather than “Can we stop?” Why not “Stop”? If you are feeling anxious, unsafe, or not ready or in the mood, and you are able to find your words, then in my view, the clearer you can be, the better. It should not be a question, it should be a directive.

A couple more good resources:

  • What is consent?
  • The infamous Tea Consent video. (Why they felt the need to include an f-bomb at 0:10, I don’t know. The rest of the video is fine.)

If you have some other great resources (web pages, videos, books, etc.) let me know in the comments section.

Last words

I shouldn’t have to say it, but here it is. The rules of consent apply to everyone: male, female, transgender, intersex, gay, straight, bi, poly, whatever. Men are victims of sexual assault too. Those who are LGBTQIA are much more likely to be sexually assaulted. So are those who are neurodiverse or handicapped.

And of course, children, those who cannot understand sex and consent, and those who are drunk, unconscious, or asleep cannot ever give consent.

And finally, if you have been the victim of sexual assault, it is not because you did the wrong thing. The fault lies with the perpetrator, not the victim. I hope that you are able to find healing and wholeness in your life.

Featured Book

A Catastrophic Theft

A Catastrophic Theft

Reg has been able to set up a respectable, if somewhat unconventional business providing psychic services in Black Sands, and is starting to feel like she could actually settle down there long-term.

But her relationship with Sarah, who has been her loyal friend and protector since she arrived becomes strained when Sarah’s precious emerald necklace disappears.

There is no shortage of suspects, with Reg herself at the front of the line.

Friends and felines pitch in to solve the mystery, but in the end it is up to Reg and her cat Starlight to ferret out the truth.

Find out more

Featured Posts

Upcoming Events

Release of Sour Cherry Turnover
12:00 am
Erin told anyone who would listen that she was not concerned about The Bake Shoppe reopening, but in her heart of hearts, she was worried about whether Auntie Clem’s Bakery would be able to survive[...]
May 9 @ 7:00 pm – 8:00 pm
Writing as Medicine: Mental Illness on the Page @ Memorial Park Library
7:00 pm
Join local authors Susan Calder, Stacey Bruce, and P.D. Workman as they read from their work and discuss how they portray mental illness and how writing on this topic helps them and their readers.
Release of Apple-achian Treasure
12:00 am
Erin is back on her feet again with the opening of Auntie Clem’s Bakery version 2.0. But her new partner is not the easiest person in the world to get along with and there are[...]
Release of Vegan Baked Alaska
12:00 am
“At least you won’t be stumbling over any bodies on an Alaskan cruise.” Mary Lou couldn’t have been more wrong. Of course Erin Price, gluten-free baker extraordinaire, would stumble over a body on the cruise[...]

More blog posts

Excerpt from the Shack

Excerpt from the Shack

If you didn’t get a chance to look at the book list under my International Women’s Day post, you should pop over there and have a read through now. And be sure to come back this Friday for a new release! If you’ve been reading the Reg Rawlins, Psychic […]

Randy's Review of His Hands were Quiet

Randy’s Review of His Hands were Quiet

I have another review to post by my sweetheart. This is a review of His Hands were Quiet, book #2 in the Zachary Goldman Mysteries series, reblogged from Flamestr’s Thoughts. […]

Excerpt from Deep Freeze

Excerpt from Deep Freeze

Last week I read Deep Freeze, by John Sandford. This is part of the Virgil Flowers series, which I’ve read at least one book from before. John Sandford writes complex mysteries with plenty of twists and turns and misdirection. Virgil Flowers is a relatable detective, smart, and always a good […]

A Psychic with Catitude and other Freebies

A Psychic with Catitude and other Freebies

I have put A Psychic with Catitude, book #2 in the Reg Rawlins Psychic Investigator series on Kindle for free this weekend. (And don’t look now, but What the Cat Knew, book #1 in the series is on for $0.99 for a limited time!) […]

Excerpt from The Screwtape Letters

Excerpt from The Screwtape Letters

I am currently reading a C.S. Lewis classic, The Screwtape Letters. C.S. Lewis, the author of the children’s fantasy series The Narnia Chronicles, also wrote a number of letters on Christianity such as The Great Divorce, Mere Christianity, and, of course, The Screwtape Letters. He also wrote a space trilogy, […]

Excerpt from The 7 ½ Deaths of Evelyn Hardcastle

Excerpt from The 7 ½ Deaths of Evelyn Hardcastle

This week, I have just started The 7 1/2 Deaths of Evelyn Hardcastle, by Stuart Turton. I admit that I picked it up because I was intrigued by the title! It is not your typical murder mystery, by any means. […]

Excerpt from Deadline

Excerpt from Deadline

This week I am reading Sandra Brown’s Deadline. I have previously mentioned Low Pressure here. Sandra Brown’s writing is not cookie cutter fiction, she produces thrillers that are fresh and new, with interesting characters and twists. […]

Excerpt from The Quiche of Death

Excerpt from The Quiche of Death

I have read several of M.C. Beaton’s Agatha Raisin series, but I have not read the first one. And here it is, The Quiche of Death. Agatha retires from her advertising agency and moved to the Cottswalds, fulfilling a childhood dream. Only she finds out she doesn’t like it that […]

Loading...