Posted on 01/17/2020 at 03:00 PM by Sadye Scott-Hainchek

A short story (and its author’s shorter bio) turned out to be long on controversy.

Clarkesworld Magazine, which publishes science fiction, has pulled down the story “I Sexually Identify as an Attack Helicopter” by Isabel Fall, with the author’s consent, due to the online reaction to it.

Editor Neil Clarke explained the decision in a statement online, stressing that the removal wasn’t to censor the author but rather to protect her as her mental health had suffered from online attacks.

The short story’s title refers to a transphobic meme and was intended to “take away some of the power of that very hurtful meme,” Clarke wrote.

Though the story had gone through sensitivity readers, not all readers reacted well to it or believed that it accomplished the author’s goal.

After the online pushback intensified, Fall decided to reveal that she is transgender, information that was not included in the biography that accompanied the story.

Clarke defended his decision not to push for its inclusion but acknowledged that it might have changed the response to the story.

You can read the entire statement on Clarkesworld's website.

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