Downton Abbey Rape Scene Causes Controversy

Downton Abbey has for several years now been a hugely successful piece of weekend entertainment. It caused controversy recently, however, as it progressed through its fourth season. The reason? The series’ depiction of the rape of maid Anna Bates (Joanne Froggatt). According to The Independent ITV received more than 60 complaints following the broadcast of the episode with another 30 complaints sent straight to Ofcom. Meanwhile, The Mirror estimated that the total number... Read More

Twitter Abuse and Freedom of Speech

The last two weeks have seen several high profile female journalists and MPs receive rape and death threats on Twitter, mostly from anonymous users and profiles. This news – obviously enough to make headlines on its own – coupled with the women’s refusal to ignore the abuse, has led to a campaign for a reporting system to be embedded within the Twitter platform, with the aim of logging and punish those using the platform to troll or abuse. Whilst this may seem... Read More

OK Magazine Gets It Wrong with Royal Baby Coverage

OK Magazine – trash gossip favourite here in the UK – jumped on the Royal Baby bandwagon with some style this week. Rather than following the rest of the world’s media and cooing over the first pictures of the baby prince, the publication instead got it spectacularly wrong by featuring discussion of Kate Middleton’s post-pregnancy weight-loss regime before she and the newborn Prince George had even left the hospital. Though this might not sound too out-there... Read More

100 Deeds: Rediscovering Feminism Today

This is great. This summer, the People’s History Museum in Manchester is commemorating the death of suffragette Emily Wilding Davison by joining the 100 Deeds project, inviting members of the public to do – and share – a deed that illustrates what modern feminism means to them. 100 years ago, on the 4th June 1913, Emily Wilding Davison stepped in front of the King’s horse at the Epsom Derby, protesting women’s right to vote. Her deed caused her... Read More

2012 for Women: The Good

Following on from the last post here at Hot For Writing – which looked at some of the negative stories about women that made headlines in 2012 – it’s time to take a look at some of the positives, of which there were actually lots. Much better! London 2012 I don’t think anyone could really have predicted the pride and euphoria that swept the UK (if not the world) this summer and – looking at Team GB and Paralympics GB alone, the achievements... Read More

More Hot Writing: in The Guardian

As well as looking after Hot For Writing, I also write for other media outlets on a freelance basis. During the last month or so, I’ve had the opportunity to write about my day job in a number of different places, which has actually been quite an interesting change from writing here on HFW. My day job – in marketing and events management – isn’t something I share a lot about online (I tend to keep it quite separate), so it was both a challenge and a pleasure... Read More

Let’s Talk About Fifty Shades of Grey.

So Fifty Shades of Grey – the ‘romantic fantasy’ novel (read: full-on erotica) currently obliterating bestseller charts across the world – has overtaken Harry Potter to become the fastest selling paperback of all time. The book is the first in a trilogy of erotic novels written by Erika Mitchell, a British author who writes under the pen name E.L. James and who describes her writing as offering women ‘a holiday from their husbands.’ Despite... Read More