Thursday, June 22, 2006

Getting On With The Show

I know my last Romancing The Blog column addressed online behavior and flame wars - but it appears nobody actually read it. This is not a shock to me as by nature I have an inferiority complex and feel that I'm a rather horrid writer. Yeah, yeah - Wendy's suffering from Middle Child Persecution Syndrome again. Watch her curl up in the fetal position and start sucking her thumb.

The recent brouhaha (and no I'm not linking to it - why bother?) revolves around a rather opinionated reader blogger (love ya hon!) and a small e-publisher who took umbrage with the fact that said blogger ragged on their crappy CGI cover art.

This has since led to a new blog (again not linking to it - just cause I'm a bitch like that) that calls all of those who like to snark to the mat.

Now, I'm all for calling someone to the mat. Hey, it needs to be done occasionally - and none of us should be immune from persecution. That said, there is the difference between stating an opinion and being a raving asshole. You can say, "Wendy is just plain wrong about this." You cannot say, "Wendy is a megalomaniac bitch" Although delusional that I am, I think I'd like being called that.

So once again I'm going to offer some common sense advice (like I did in the column that nobody read) which in turn will continue to go ignored. Oh well.

First - We're talking about fiction here folks. Fiction. This is not war, genocide, world hunger, AIDS, cancer, or the multitude of other horrible things that go on in our world every day. It's fiction. It's entertainment. They're novels for cripes sake. Honestly I deal with this stuff for a living, it pays the rent and feeds me, and I don't take it that seriously - so why are you?

Second - Romance cover art has to be picked on. If it's not a law it should be. Frankly it's probably one of the top reasons why the genre has never gotten any respect and if we don't make fun of it that leaves all the assholes who sniff haughtily at our "questionable" reading choices to do it for us. And honestly, we're a hell of a lot funnier.

Third - There are more important things to worry about. Just watch the June episode of Real Sports With Bryant Gumble if you don't believe me. The current administration's environmental policies are enough to make your head spin. Oops - there I go showing my Liberal Softie Underpants again.

Fourth - Why aren't we bitching about spammers? I'm seriously getting up to 5 e-mails a day from various assholes pretending to be Paypal so that I'll click on their stupid link that takes me to some off-shore website so I can blithely "verify" my credit card/bank account information for them. On top of that, I have all the asshole spammers who are trying to pass themselves off as every bank and credit union in the nation. I like to think there is a special place in Hell for these people.

Fifth - Have I mentioned how absurd all this nonsense is? Completely totally absurd. I think of bloggers I "know" online who are living with real problems and heartache right now (you know who you are). There is real tragedy in the world. Real problems. And instead we're allowing trolls to get to us and dust up a bunch of drama that none of us needs or wants. I'm not suggesting we wallow in Real Life Misery - but lordy let's talk about fun shit! No more drama!

But there I go talking common sense again. My mother always told me that talking common sense to people who obviously don't have any is not only a waste of time, but just causes a major headache. Or leads to alcoholism. Either way, a waste of time and a nasty habit altogether.

I guess this post makes me part of the problem since I'm giving space to it (hey, but I didn't link!). I think there is still a little tiny piece of me that thinks if I shake hard enough that people will stop being jack-asses. Poor, poor delusional Wendy. Someday I'll get professional help for that.


Nicole said...

Great post.

I debated whether to blog about it and just decided not to. it's all so incredibly ridiculous and has been blown way out of proportion.

Yes, most romance covers are crappy. Especially the CG ones. ANd we damn well better make fun of them or those publishers will think we actually like them!!!! Which seems to be the case. So what if some reader tattooed the crappy art onto herself? Perhaps said reader just has bad taste. or is a rabid fan-girl *g* Or perhaps she's both.

And perhaps I'll get flamed here, but does anyone else think that perhaps some of those people don't say anything about some of the art for fear of pissing off the author? Cuz doesn't Angela Knight do cover art for Changeling Press as well as publish books there? Perhaps they just don't want to tell a fairly well-selling author that her art kinda isn't up to par.

You know, I'm just going to hit post before I decide I shouldn't write this.

Monica said...

Oh, I will certainly get flamed. But hell with all its drawbacks at least ain't boring.

Because sometimes we need diversion. I had a miserable last winter and spring, some of the hardest times in my life.

I'm back now and do I want to read blogs about folk going through hard personal matters? Hell, no.

I'm entertained by the feminists being appalled by blowjobs, the trainwreck over the e-pubs indignation over their funky covers being called funky and diverted by my own umbrage over the guv'ment fools who won't extend the Voting Rights Act along with my personal fav soapbox of racial inequality that makes everybody squirm like I stuck worms in their drawers.

You got a plethora of boring bloggers that are writers! Interesting writers writing about relationships, sex and edgy, cool stuff. A bunch of women, teeth gritted and eyes narrowed, dying to let it out so bad that they've cleared the supplies of Ex-Lax from the store shelves. I check out their blogs and wonder what went wrong?

Why don't they get into it, and not be so afraid to mix it up and show their colors?

Oh, they don't want to alienate their readers. They want to sell books.

I'm sorry, promo-focused nicegirl bloggers are boring as frick and their focus shows. So what if everybody isn't going to like them--everybody isn't going to like them anyway.

I can't help but feel their books are as boring as their vanilla, same ol', chatty-chat, fake-nicey-nice, recycled-writing-tip, regurgitated news blogs.

One way to revitalize the genre is to stop worrying about being ladylike and liven the hell up.

(Of course, I'm not talking about anybody's blog who's reading this comment).

Let the flames begin. [wicked chortle!]

Wendy said...

Nicole: As a general rule I hate all CGI covers. All...Of...Them. They just creep me out.

Monica: You're a naughty, naughty girl :-) My problem isn't so much the dust-up, it's the "oh we're taking ourselves so seriously" vibe I'm getting. KarenS basically said, "Ewww, what is up with this cover?" and the publisher essentially slapped her upside the head with the big ol'copyright stick. Geez, lighten up. I'm not suggesting we play nice - but I do think the "talking out of your ass" line was seriously crossed here.

And I'm really sorry I missed the Feminsits Against Blowjobs flame war! OMG - that had to have been priceless. But then I tend to stick to romance related blogs, so it's not surprising that it slipped under my radar.

Nicole said...

There was Feminists against Blowjobs flamewars and I missed it? Damn. Off to check out your blog about it.

Yea, those Poser covers are nasty.

sybil said...

Hey I read your RtB column!

just saying ;)

Tara Marie said...

Oh man...I missed the Feminists Against Blowjobs flame war too!

... "oh we're taking ourselves so seriously" vibe...

Exactly, I've been tempted to post a column called "For Crying Out Loud, It's Romance Not Brain Surgery." You beat me to it.

Like Monica, I find the whole thing rather entertaining, but after a while the whole thing starts to get old.

How many people complain about the large publisher's covers sucking? CG ones suck even more. I'm sure there maybe some nice ones out there, but when you put out crappy covers someones going to bitch about it, get over it or produce something better.

Monica said...

Exactly, Tara Marie. We need new and better stuff to bitch about

Kristie (J) said...

I read and agreed and loved you RTB column and now I just read, agreed and love this one.
In the grand scheme of things it shouldn't be that big a deal and not worth getting so worked up about.

You're right - some of those covers - on ebooks and print books are bad and they should be pointed out. It's no reflection on the author.

And right on about spammers! I'm getting an average of 12 to 15 of these a day now!!! Most of them on how to increase penis size. How they ever got MY name I've no idea. I don't even have one.

Karen Scott said...

Slightly off topic, but ooh I'm loving the new look Wendy!