Wednesday, May 02, 2007

If you can't say something nice........

Don't say anything at all.

How I loathe that expression. I was raised on it and I lived it most of my life. And know something I've learned in the past year or so? It's bullshit.
Why has this expression defined a culture of women to hold in our thoughts, to be phony and/or fake or risk ulcers, repressed emotions and all manner of feelings? I'm a relatively nice person, but if I see something wrong or disagree with something, why shouldn't I say something?
Are women so weak that we can't bear to hear something that's not so nicey nice? Good lord I hope not.
I'm rambling here I know - so bear with me. It seems there is a massive blow-up in blog land started at Karen Scott's when she was curious about what happened to Ellora's Cave and the quality of writing. I only have a couple of their books and don't read e-books in general - I love to hold them too much, but from reading some of the responses there were some interesting things said. Of course there was also a few nutcases - but that happens. And then things blew up. Very interesting reading.
Among the allegations was - once again - nasty bloggers. It seems the regular ones are always being pointed out - Karen S, Bam, Smart Bitches, Mrs. Giggles and Dear Author. I for one, love each and every one of these blogs for their honesty and the way they're telling it like it is. I adore the fact that they don't hold to the "if you can't say something good" line so many of us have been conditioned into practising. I'm a fairly frequent reader of them and not once have I seen any one of them being cruel to an author. Honest about books yes. But we need honesty. And I don't think the vast majority of authors appreciate being considered as fragile flowers who can't bear to hear any kind of criticism.
The thing I've realized is there is someone who will disagree with each and every single review going. We all have different tastes and like different things. So if a book get's a bad review, that means the person who read and reviewed it didn't like it. Period. There are others out there who will like it - and that's good.
But for some people to castigate bloggers who are offering their opinion is nuts! I love blogs. I love the snarky blogs - and let me tell you - it takes talent to do it well.
I'm sure this latest blow-up will pass over as have others. But in the meantime, grab a drink, make sure you have lots of computer time and be ready for some entertaining reading.

'til later


Nikki said...


Earlier this year I decided to not write any review if I had anything negative to say. Well, I haven't been blogging very much lately and you know what that after reading your post, I think I've changed my mind. You are correct, men would never be having the conversation that is going on in blogland right now. It's crazy, we are all adults (I think). If someone writes a negative review, with no personal attacks against the author, it's just that. It's not personal! I do realize that authors are lurking everywhere in blogland now, but I must tell the whole truth and nothing but the truth, if I feel so moved to do so! There's another saying for you!

Stacy~ said...

I've never been good at snark - I come across more whiny than anything else - so I usually leave it up to the experts. After reading how Karen was attacked (I read her blog regularly) I couldn't help but be completely pissed off about how she was attacked. (It got me blogging about it too).

Karen brought up so many valid points, many of which I agreed with. The thing is, as outspoken as Karen is, she's a strong advocate of good stories and regularly supports authors and the industry. Funny (not really) how that often gets overlooked.