Excuse me while I go squee over my beautiful, beautiful (and newly arrived) copy of Mother of Invention.
My issue with many self-indulgent works by white men (the ones I’ve read, the ones I’ve given up on, and the ones I’ve refused to try) is not that I think they’re evil or poorly written or even, necessarily, offensive (though plenty of them are), but that I can’t find any entry point — and nothing incentivizes me to find one except other men’s approval.
Deirdre Coyle on dull while men.
Not from the last link, but from a works-related-to-the-last-link link.
Also, huge content warning in that the opening paragraph of Coyle’s essay is an offhand description of a man who sexually assaulted her with illicit drugs.
One of the things I find heartbreaking about reviews is when readers critique an aspect of one of my books that is the result of being compelled by my editor to do something I knew was wrong.
Moira J. Moore on the unspoken tension.
The reality about editors is that, like authors, they exist at all stages of their craft and that “their craft” is just as subjective,1 which can lead to “not even wrong” scenarios. Basically, you want it one way, the editor wants it another. Whoever “wins”, you both loose the second a reader criticizes the contentious aspect, even if twenty others praise it (brains are funny that way).
So it goes, I suppose.
- At least when it comes to things that aren’t, say, copyediting. ^
It kind of occurs to me most of the sorts of prose people describe as “like bad fanfic” actually:
a) doesn’t sound like actual bad fanfic at all, and
b) does sound suspiciously a hell of a lot like a lot of prose written by the Great Men™ of fiction…1
- This post brought to you by the novel Solaris, which is basically a litany of Bad Fanfic Sins piled all on top of one another. ^