Today, my guest blog tour stops off at the home of Michele Lee, author, reviewer, and an avid reader whose reviewing output puts mine to shame. I really wish I could read as fast as she does, because she was able to go through a lot more titles than I did last year.
Today’s post is a bit more serious, and I’m talking about hate hype, or the crowds of people who gather around an artist’s work to actively hate it. You can check out the post here.
Becka Sutton, AKA @shutsumon on Twitter, commented how this guest post was well timed, given the comments going on about Amanda Hocking over on Novelr. I hadn’t been paying attention to this, but what’s gone down is, some writers expressed sour grapes over the quality of Amanda’s writing. I read part of Switched, and I admit, I wasn’t impressed. I stopped reading, and I said, “This is not for me.” And I moved on.
Well, apparently, a lot of readers feel Amanda Hocking IS for them, and she’s doing VERY well lately. Like, she’s selling so many books, even a mass market deal wouldn’t be in her best interests to pursue. Damn. And, since she’s an indie with no previous publishing credits, you can’t “pull a Konrath” and claim her print reputation is helping her. To borrow a bodybuilding line: it’s all her.
So now it’s no longer possible to blame the publisher or acquiring editor for lax quality standards. No grumbling about editors doing favors, or the old boys network or whatnot. No, so instead, let’s…blame the readers, for not being smart enough to appreciate real art.
Or…how about we don’t?
As I said, I didn’t dig the writing in Switched (the YA book from Amanda Hocking about trolls, sold at Smashwords for $0.99), but I admire the promotional skills of Miss Hocking. I wish I was able to promote my stuff as well as her to the right readers and reach an audience like hers. But that is the limits of my professional envy, and once the readers decide they like her writing, I can’t judge them. Really, I love Twilight, so what am I gonna say? “No, don’t read that crap writing. Read this crap writing instead.” Eh, I’ll just let readers decide what they like and read what I like instead, m’kay?
I’m a hack who writes weird fiction. It’s not highbrow stuff. I’m not about to turn around and suggest that people who read “that crap” are missing out on something special by not reading my crap instead. Really, it’s very similar crap, but with different creatures.
So Amanda Hocking, you go on with your bad self, and congratulations on your enviable success. And you writers with the sour grapes, go back to picking on Dan Brown. At least then you can insult the publishers and avoid looking like complete douchebags for insulting the readers.