Andrea Griffith, aka Social I.Q. Lady

‘Atheism is at war to secure our intellectual freedom. With every Facebook post an arrow is shot. With every discussion questioning religion a battle is waged. We are not just at war for ourselves, but for everyone, even those erroneously on the other side.
Religion drains prosperity, happiness, intellectual freedom and love from all honest men and women. Religion is a disease, an epistemological disease that progressively undermines one’s capacity to think, to identify reality, to live competently. Religion is also a collective disease that affects everyone who looks toward others, or the group, or the leader for solutions to his or her problems and responsibilities.
Religion is not just a disease, it is also the tool that Master-Manipulators use to justify or rationalize the use of force, fraud, or dishonesty to usurp values from the producers. For example, religion is used to create illusionary standards and false guilt designed to beguile individuals into surrendering their earned values and happiness.
Religion also leaves the mind open to irrational ideas as well as trying to impose irrational ideas onto others. Religion is the fertilizer of deception.
”     Religion is the Fertilizer of Deception”

When did you first become interested in writing?

I’ve enjoyed reading and writing ever since I learned how. I remember learning how to put together a short story and create poems in the 4th grade. I thought, “How fun is this?” I loved writing so much that in high school I began to charge money for writing papers for others.

What style of writing do you use most?

I write in the first person. I imagine that I am speaking directly to my reader and try to convey my thoughts in a way I think they will best understand.

Has your style changed from when you first began as an author?

Style, no, but content yes.

In what way do you usually put down your ideas first?

I keep a pad of paper next to my computer. Every time I have a new idea, I jot it down.

What made you choose that medium?

I can easily take the pad of paper with me anywhere I go. Sometimes I write ideas down on the back of business cards. I know that if I don’t write it down right away, the idea may be forgotten.

When early man could make sense of his environment he could stop wondering and worrying about certain things and move on to something else. If he conjured up some kind of reason for the sun rising every morning, then it satisfied that urge to know. As man began to understand the truth of his environment, fantasy began to be replaced with fact. We now know why the sun ‘rises’ every morning and it’s not because the god Zeus is happy or some other mystical explanation. Most people today refuse to accept the fact that when we die it’s over (and I admit, it’s a pretty sad thought) so they make up all kinds of fantasies about a life hereafter or even reincarnation. Blame it on our early ancestors. We inherited this way of thinking. ”Why People Believe in God”

Do your ideas come from life or imagination?

Definitely life. I see what’s current in the news and draw a lot from that.

Who is your favourite author?

It really depends on the subject. I enjoy Michael Shermer for his simplicity, Richard Dawkins for his depth, and Ayn Rand for her objectivist novels. I used to read Louis L’Amour all the time. My favorite was “The Walking Drum”. I love historical fiction.

What is your favourite piece of work by yourself?

I would have to say “The Atheist Jerk”. I would like to see people behave better and show more compassion towards others.

How much time (on average) does it take to complete a work?

I take about a year to complete a book. The first nine months are writing down ideas and visualizing how I want it to come together. Once I know what I want to do I can get the rough draft out in about a month or two. I spend no more than an hour or so to write my daily blog.

When it comes to religion, most people ‘feel’ that there is a god. This is counterintuitive to all rational thought, but to most people’s brains, they don’t care. They are using their feelings as opposed to reason. They will stubbornly cling to their beliefs even when presented with opposing data. When people cling even stronger to an idea despite evidence to the contrary it’s called “belief perseverance”.
Our intuition can sometimes get us into trouble. Lucky for us we have developed the branch of mathematics known as statistics to help us when the answers seem counter-intuitive.
”Can You Trust Your Intuition?”

How well do you take criticism?

I welcome criticism. I want to be correct so if I’m not I expect someone to point it out. My readers are good at keeping me on my toes! I recognize that not everyone will like what I write about and that’s a different kind of disapproval. When criticism comes in the form of ignorance I know I have an uphill battle in front of me. It just makes me endeavor harder.

What do you do to overcome a ‘block’?

I engage the help of my friends. I ask for a kind of spitballing of ideas. My friends are brilliant. I couldn’t do all that I do without some assistance.

How do you know something is ‘finished’? Is it easy to walk away?

It’s never finished, but I tell myself to ‘let it go’. I could without doubt keep perfecting a project, but my goal is not to be faultless, but to be helpful and inspiring.

Have you had been published?

My last book, “The Fruits and Greens Diet” is available at Last month it was listed on the Bestseller list! I kept my atheism out of it because my aim was to reach a wider audience. Now THAT was a book that I could have kept writing forever! Readers can go to to read about raw foods and see some of my television demonstrations and interviews.

Have you any publications planned for the future?

I’m working on a book about Atheist Etiquette. It’s about knowing what to say and do when religion rears its ugly head. Hopefully, that will be out in June of 2011.

What is our goal as atheists in regards to ridding the world of this mind numbing control of religion? I’m sure there are many different answers for each one of us. We may want to see the advancement of science. We may want to see the application of reason. We may want humans, all humans, to have the ability to use reason and think clearly. Bottom line, we need to be able to help people to walk away from religion on their own.
So how do many atheists go about accomplishing this? When they meet someone who believes in god or follows a religion, they start off by attacking them. They call them names such as stupid and retard. They assault their ‘apparent lack of intelligence’. They argue with and ridicule the believer to the point of actually turning him or her more away from the truth. How is this helpful?
Yes, there are idiots in the world, both theists and non-theists. Religion can and should be ridiculed. Then there are the ordinary people just trying to get through life in the best way that, so far, they know how. These people do not deserve to be name-called or verbally attacked, they need to be educated. There is a lot at stake when a person considers leaving their faith. It’s a hard blow and the feeling of betrayal can be overwhelming
”The Atheist Jerk”

What are your plans for the future?

I plan on continuing my writing and speaking to groups about atheism.

What advice would you give new authors?

Everybody has a book within them. Write about what you know and write from the heart.

Have you done any courses to help you?

No, but I’m an avid reader so I’ve picked up little ideas on writing along the way. For example, I learned that most readers of articles lose interest after 700 words so I try to keep my blogs short and to the point.

What do you do to market your work?

My marketing plan relies on the internet and partnering with others. I utilize word of mouth and joint venture partners.

… religion itself does not deserve respect. We can, and should, respect one’s right to their beliefs, but not the beliefs themselves. Religion continues to discriminate against so many people. Religion encourages hatred toward other people. I have Christian friends that tell me, “Most religions teach love and tolerance.” No, they don’t. Jesus may
have taught his followers to “love their neighbor”, but the religion teaches discrimination toward homosexuals and women, to name just two. Love them, yes, but don’t allow them equal rights. In my book that’s not love.
Religion also keeps a chokehold on progress. Evolution and other scientific theories, stem cell research, and birth control are just a few issues that the churches think they can control. And by ‘control’ I mean squash. But their most powerful control is over people’s minds. The followers (sheople) are taught to accept their dogmas unquestionably inhibiting free thought and innovation. Curiosity is stifled. We’re talking about billions of people chained to a belief system that continues to rob them of their freedoms and happiness.
Religion should be treated with ridicule and contempt. It does not deserve respect. There should no longer be an argument regarding evolution versus creation. The debate is over and every, EVERY, scientist is in agreement. There is no “believing” in evolution. There is only the understanding of it. If someone doesn’t understand evolution, fine. I sometimes have difficulty with the theory of gravity, but that doesn’t mean I dismiss it for lack of education.
”Ridiculing Religion”

Do you use social networking in your day to day life?

I’m a Facebook devotee. I post my blogs and read every comeback. I get a sense for what people are looking for in my writing and try to oblige. To follow me on Facebook just look for the Social I.Q. Lady page. It’s a long link, but here it is:

Are you interested in collaborating with artists?

I would love to join forces with someone else. I actually do better bouncing off ideas and perfecting a thought. I would love to work
with Richard Dawkins. He can be the brilliant, thought provoking scientist and I can turn it into something my mother can understand.

Have you got hobbies?

I play the piano and sing. Besides reading, I enjoy solving puzzles of all kinds. I’m a typical outdoor Californian who enjoys anything relating to the ocean or lake such as boating and swimming and being in the sun.

Where are you based?

I live in a small town on the edge of Sacramento, California.

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