so, replace "romance novel" with "memoir"; is the rest accurate?
― Solange Knowles is my hero (DJP), Thursday, 10 January 2013 16:54 (seven years ago) link
― Ned Raggett, Thursday, 10 January 2013 16:54 (seven years ago) link
― Solange Knowles is my hero (DJP), Thursday, 10 January 2013 16:55 (seven years ago) link
Given some of the things she was also saying about her publisher I wonder if that had something to do with it.
― Ned Raggett, Thursday, 10 January 2013 16:55 (seven years ago) link
Was just wondering the same thing.
― grossly incorrect register (in orbit), Thursday, 10 January 2013 16:57 (seven years ago) link
not really a double feint in my reading; the now-gone blog post says the memior was written a couple years ago while still under the heavy influence of the guy and (i think?) before the most egregious instances of abuse had happened
― goole, Thursday, 10 January 2013 16:57 (seven years ago) link
the memoir was finished 2 years ago and some shit has gone down since then.
― an eagle named "small government" (call all destroyer), Thursday, 10 January 2013 16:57 (seven years ago) link
she also previously blogged about her breakup with him without as far as I can tell mentioning abuse or rape, which of course doesn't mean it didn't happen. But she wrote things like,
I am grateful for this entire experience, and I do not view this breakup as in any way being counter to the message of my book. I still love Steve, and I am convinced that I always will. This breakup hurts more than my divorce, because the depth and intensity of the love was the most profound thing I have experienced, other than being a mother.
I probably should have seen it coming, given what little I knew of his dating/family/job/friendship history. I ignored the red flags, and I chose to live in a state of hope. That’s not a bad thing, really. It was a glorious 1.5 years. Best of my life. I would not trade them for anything. I have never felt more at peace, and more alive, and more on fire with wanting than I did at his little house in the middle of nowhere, lying next to him in the deathly quiet of night. I am a completely changed human being for having known this man, in every way, and so the basic message of the memoir remains true, and always will. This relationship changed me, and just because it has been taken from me does not mean I am no longer changed. I am forever changed, better, new, reborn, wiser. Should I someday ever get to that place again where I feel I’m able to have another relationship (seems unlikely right now) I’d like to think my future boyfriend will owe Steve a thank-you letter for the woman I became with him — a gentler, more compassionate, more thoughtful and womanly version of the person I’d always been.
― drunk 'n' white's elements of style (Hurting 2), Thursday, 10 January 2013 16:57 (seven years ago) link
when did the alleged abuse go down?
― drunk 'n' white's elements of style (Hurting 2), Thursday, 10 January 2013 16:58 (seven years ago) link
(blog post was October 2012)
The now-removed post also says that she sugar-coated things for her blog so that readers wouldn't know how bad it was.
― grossly incorrect register (in orbit), Thursday, 10 January 2013 17:00 (seven years ago) link
redacted blog post
I’ve had more than a dozen books published, but never have I had a publication day come and go without so much as an email from my editor, wishing me well — until now. With the recent publication of my first memoir, The Feminist & The Cowboy: An Unlikely Love Story, I have had the odd experience of having been essentially shunned by my publisher, one assumes because the reality of my life more than a year after having turned in the final manuscript is different from the ending one might have liked to have seen if my life were the made-for-TV movie or fairy tale my publisher seemed to have hoped they might market my book as. I have been advised not to discuss any of this publicly, to just accept this cold shoulder and lack of support as my penance for the crime of being openly broken up with the cowboy when I should have just pretended we were still together long enough to sell books. I have tried to be cooperative, but as the early reviews come rolling in for the book I feel compelled to come clean — totally clean — with my readers. I do this because I think it will help to make sense of a book that in many ways just doesn’t make sense to healthy people, and because I believe very firmly that the truth is the only currency a writer has, and that if there is any hope of redeeming this book and making it meaningful it lies in the full story of my relationship with the cowboy and not just in the candy-coated version that appears in the book.
The first thing I think readers need to understand is just how much time it takes for a book to go from a writer’s computer files to a bookstore shelf. It takes more than a year, usually. That year is used for things like cover design, advance publicity for magazines, visits with book buyers from members of the sales team. So the version of my life that hit shelves last week is actually more than two years old.
That said, a lot can happen in two years, especially when you’re in a relationship with a man as complicated and volatile as the cowboy. There has been some confusion because in addition to the book I have also kept a sporadic blog about my ongoing relationship with the cowboy. Those who followed the blog understood that things changed, and they followed along with me. But for those reviewers who are new to the party, just learning about me from the memoir and then seeing on my blog that the relationship described in the book both wasn’t what it seemed, eventually, and is not in existence anymore, there is understandably a sense of having been the victim of a bait-and-switch operation. I am truly sorry for this, and I wish to reassure readers that no one in the world feels more the victim of bait and switch than I.
What I mean by this is that while I set out to write a memoir that was a love letter to a man I was deeply in love with, a man who challenged me in myriad ways, a man who changed my life profoundly, a man I respected and honored greatly at the time, what I actually wrote was a handbook for women on how to fall in love with a manipulative, controlling, abusive narcissist. The fascinating thing about the release of the book, for me, has been just how many reviewers have seen what I failed to see when I wrote the book: That the cowboy was controlling and abusive. I simply never saw it then. I admired and nearly worshipped the man. One reviewer described her disappointment in having learned that I was still with him at the end of the book, saying that she could not help but to think of cult members as she read my adoring account of a man who, to her eyes and through nothing but my journalistic descriptions of his interactions with me, was obviously a domineering abuser. It hurts to read reviews like that, but it is also empowering for me now. See, while I didn’t understand just what kind of man I’d fallen for at the start, and during the writing of the book, the longer we were together the more obvious it became.
That said, I want to come clean with something else. There is a LOT you don’t know about the cowboy and how he treated me. I kept a lot of it under wraps, because I had turned a book in and I was trying to be a good contract employee and not completely sabotage the book by telling the whole story on my blog. But with my publisher’s complete lack of support now, and with the reviews so clearly describing for me the fact that healthy women, whole women, are able to recognize in the cowboy a dangerous man that I was, in my blindness and lack of experience with abusive men, unable to see, I feel that the only possible way for any of this to make sense to anyone is for the entire story to be known. To be honest about it puts me in danger — real physical danger — so I am reluctant. But I also feel I owe it to my loyal readers and fans to be truthful now. It is the decent thing to do.
One reader wrote to me via a comment on this blog, condemning me for finding the cowboy’s behaviors abusive now, where I said they were wonderful before. This would be a fair condemnation if it were true. Though I have referred to the cowboy being abusive on my blog, I have never listed the reasons I believe this. If all you had to go on was the book, you could very well jump to the same conclusion my critic did. I don’t blame her, and I totally understand.
I have been working on a sequel about the cowboy and me, and though I am quite sure my publisher won’t want it I will likely self-publish it soon. In it, I plan to detail the ways I was fooled and manipulated, the mistakes I made in choosing to ignore red flags, the many unfortunate ways that I started to subsume and lose myself in order to please an unpleasable and controlling man. I hope that in doing so I will help to make sense of the first book, both for you guys and for myself. What I want to emphasize here is that the first book was NOT an attempt to sell a lie; it was a sincere, heartfelt memoir that came during the honeymoon period of an abusive relationship, before I understood just how much danger I was putting myself in, with me justifying the hints of violence through my own romanticized version of the American cowboy icon and, unfortunately, with me blinded by this man’s almost unfathomable physical beauty, which was almost impossible to reconcile with the brutality that this most handsome shell encased.
In the interest of retaining some respectability, I will tell you a few of the more painful moments, so that you can understand just how quickly things changed and just how violently they escalated. I do this as a warning to other women, too. For many years, I simply scratched my head at women in abusive relationships, unable to understand why they stayed, judgmental of them for not being smarter. What I didn’t understand was just how masterful some men can be at the seduction and honeymoon phase, just how ruthlessly perfect they can present themselves to be, before the screw begins to tighten, and tighten, until you one day wake up and don’t even recognize yourself anymore.
The worst of it began in April last year, when I discovered the cowboy and I had accidentally become pregnant. While I am pro-choice in theory, I am pro-life for myself. I could not abort that child. It went against everything I believed. And so, even though I was 43 years old and have Lupus, even though my pregnancy with my son had been a living hell 12 years before, I decided I would have the child. When I sat down face to face with the cowboy to discuss the situation, he was very kind at the start. He was supportive and said he wanted to help us sort out the best way to handle things. When I told him I was going to have the child, I expected he’d be supportive, even if he, like I, was overwhelmed by the idea of becoming parents to an infant at our ages (he was 53). Instead, his eyes grew snake cold. He glared at me, and moved away from me. He was angry, and told me very clearly: “Looks like you’ve made up your mind, but here’s what you need to know. You can have me, or you can have the baby, but you can’t have both.” I was stunned. I balked. “You don’t mean that,” I said. “You say you love me and my son, you wouldn’t just leave us because I’ve decided to have your child.” He smirked then, his eyes crueler and colder than anything I’d ever seen, and he said, simply, “Watch me.” With that, he got up, got the overnight bag he’d brought to my house in the city, and he walked out the door to return to the ranch, four hours away. He did not answer my phone calls or emails after that. I was dead to him.
I grieved harder than I have ever grieved in my life, absolutely astonished that any human being could contain within him the capacity to be so mean and selfish. I called many friends and family, and they got me through it. I tried to forget the cowboy, and kept the breakup and pregnancy a secret for the sake of my publisher, continued to post cheerful blogs about my supposed relationship. It was hell on earth. I tried to figure out how I was going to make it, how I was going to be a single mother while enduring what promised to be a painful and difficult pregnancy, how I would raise a newborn while still caring for my adolescent son, who would likely have to step in to be a mini-daddy for his sibling. It was truly awful. But I made my choice. The baby. Not the cowboy.
Then, at my first prenatal ultrasound appointment, the technician told me something terrifying. There was no baby anymore. The blood tests said I was pregnant, but there was no detectable sack or embryo. They rushed me to the hospital, thinking I was having an ectopic pregnancy. After observing me for a week, they concluded instead that I had miscarried. My father contacted the cowboy to let him know how distraught I was, how much I was suffering. This is because my father truly had sympathy for the cowboy, whom he saw as “a tragic figure,” because the cowboy had his shining moments, where he clearly longed to truly connect and love, but was unable to do either meaningfully because of severe abuses he had suffered as a child. The cowboy rushed to the hospital, full of apologies. We reconciled, because I was weak and stupid and wanted him to be the man I had once believed he was, the man I wrote about in the memoir I’d turned in months before. I wanted to make the fairy tale come true again. I wanted things the way I’d thought they were.
Things changed for good then, though. We tried to muddle through, but it just got worse and worse. There were certainly moments of great beauty and love, I cannot deny that, but underlying it all was this unrest, this unfortunate beast that would raise its head now and then, and more and more frequently. There were signs of physical violence to come, textbook signals. The cowboy bragging nonstop about all the fights he’d been in, all the men he’d put in the hospital, while polishing his guns in front of me, letting me know just what I might be in for if I got out of line again. There was the time we had an argument, the time I dared to challenge him and insist that I was right about something, when he, furious with me and so much bigger than me, simply dragged me down the hall to the bedroom, bent me over, and took me, telling me as he did so that I must never forget who was in charge, that I must learn to be nicer, that I must learn…to obey. Yes. I am not proud. I was so beaten down by then, from the constant daily criticisms, from the constant erosion of my self esteem, that I just took it, and wept, and apologized, and promised to do better. I did not think I would become someone like that. And there was a part of me hidden away inside, kept safe, that watched it all and waited for my chance to escape… There was the night we argued at my house, and he was going to leave, as he always did, stonewalling and locking me out being his favorite weapons, his silent treatments going on sometimes for weeks on end, the emails finally coming in which he said he was willing to come back as long as I changed a long list of things about myself, and me always caving in…but that night, he was brutal again, when I tried to say I was sorry, when I tried to stop the inevitable stonewalling, he glared, called me a mouthy cunt, told me to get to my side of the bed and not touch him, told me that he couldn’t stand the sight of me, told me that if I really wanted to impress him then I’d be a good girl and just shut the fuck up, and his finger poking me in the chest, and then wagged in my face, telling me that my biggest problem, the reason he would never marry me after all, was that I was a woman who just didn’t know when to shut the fuck up, shut the fuck up, and me saying I would, that I would be quiet, and turning my back to him so he wouldn’t hear me cry, and him feeling the bed shake anyway and yelling at me that I was pathetic, that if I wanted him to stay then I better stop fucking crying, and me running into my closet with my phone to fall in a heap on the floor and text myself so that in the morning I’d remember that this was NOT okay, that this was NOT love, and him pretending the next morning that nothing had happened.
The last day I saw him, I jumped out of a moving truck to get away from him. He was in a rage. He’d called me a useless cunt this time, a mouthy bitch, all manner of names. He’d told me what a terrible mother I was. He’d attacked, attacked, attacked, all because I didn’t say hello to him the right way when he came back from running the dogs on the ranch. He was convinced I was being bratty because I didn’t react with enough enthusiasm to his return. This unleashed an avalanche of hatred. I stood there in the sun, disbelieving, trying to reason with him. He told me that I needed to leave. “Get your shit and let’s go,” he said. It was getting late, and he knew I hated driving home from the ranch in the dark because so much of the rural highway out there had no cell service. If I got a flat tire or something I’d be doomed. I asked if I could just stay in the guest room until the morning. “You can either get your shit and put it in the truck yourself,” he said, “or I will drag you by the hair, beat your ass to the ground, hog-tie you with duct tape, and throw your ass in the back of the truck. One way or another, you will be leaving. You decide.” He meant it. By this time, he had raised his hand to me on at least three occasions, but had yet to strike me. He always blamed me for this. I drove him to it. Anyway, I got in the truck, and we started to leave. I was hysterical, and afraid, and he began to talk about how much he wanted to beat my ass down. The truck was going slowly, and the look in his eye was terrifying. I really believed he would kill me. He’d hinted at it. So I opened the door, and I jumped. I thought I’d land on my feet. I didn’t. I landed facedown on a bunch of rocks, nearly crushed under the back tires, dislocating my shoulder, badly cut and bruised everywhere, my hip filling with blood. I screamed. He stopped the truck, walked over, looked at me on the ground as I begged him to call an ambulance. “Only you would be stupid enough to jump out of a moving truck,” he told me. He did not help me, or come near me. Instead, he said he was going to the hunting lodge to get some witnesses, in case I tried to tell the police he had done this to me. In that instant, I finally fucking understood — this man did not love me. He could not love anyone. He was alone in his anger and paranoia. I pushed my shoulder back into joint, struggled to my feet, and terrified he’d kill me, I got my dog out of the back seat, and my purse, and I ran for the hills. I hid in ravines and canyons, behind juniper bushes, and walked the 16 miles back to my car. I drove away, and never saw him again.
That is what’s going on. That is why the release of this memoir is so bittersweet for me. The book was true, when I wrote it. But life changed. I didn’t try to fool anyone, or to exploit anything. Rather, I believed in a man who didn’t deserve it. I fell for the incredible charm and manipulations such men are capable of. I failed to see what women who are wiser than I was are clearly seeing as they read my book — that this man was “a jerk,” as one reviewer said. I didn’t know. Worst of all, I wrote about my love and my flexibility and compromises in so glowing and beautiful a way as to secure a book deal from a wonderful publisher, an elite publisher, and now the same publisher is treating me like I have the plague, all because, I feel, I have saved my own life. I didn’t set out to deceive them. No one wanted the fairy tale more than I did! Ironically, being “punished” by the publisher feels a bit like the abusive emotional stonewalling the cowboy would do to me when I didn’t knuckle under and do what HE needed me to do for HIS needs…it’s familiar territory, only now it’s being done to me by a progressive woman in New York. I’m not a commodity. I’m not an object. I’m not a thing to be sold. I am a human being, a writer, an artist, a work in progress, and real life is messy sometimes, especially when it comes to love and abuse. I am deeply wounded by the stonewalling from my editor, as wounded as I ever was when the cowboy did it to me…
I’m sure I’ll get shit for posting this. I’m betraying my publisher, who would have liked for me to be the next Ree Drummond. Hell, I would have liked for me to be the next Ree Drummond. But I wasn’t. I was the only Alisa Valdes, learning as I went along, living honestly and hopefully, trying to love. The only way the memoir works is if it is allowed to be what it IS rather than what others might like for it to have been. What is it? It is a guidebook for women on what falling in love with a controlling abuser looks like. It is a handbook on what NOT to do, what to run away from. I did not know it then. Then, I felt safe and thrilled, impressed with myself for having secured such a hot, strong, strapping, manly man. It was an illusion. Underneath it all was a scared, insecure boy, who talked the talk but didn’t walk the walk, a man who only felt good enough when he was making others feel badly. The memoir is important, and it is valuable, but not without this afterward. The message of the book, as I see it? Even smart, educated, self-sufficient, thoughtful women can get sucked into abusive relationships, and it will happen slowly, a little at a time, like a frog in a pot of cold water that is placed over a low flame, that even someone like me can, sometimes, be slowly boiled to death, that maybe we will write beautifully about how relaxing the warm water is, at first…
Finally, I want to say that I do not blame ranch life or cowboy culture for any of what the cowboy turned out to be. He could have been an accountant and it would have been the same. He was what he was because his own mother and father failed to love him. He was an abused child himself, and that was perhaps the hardest part of it all — that I saw glimpses of that little boy, the boy who so desperately wanted and needed to be loved, and sometimes he was playful, and joyous, and sweet, and happy, sometimes he loved, sometimes he allowed others to love him. Sometimes, we were happy. Blissfully happy. And that’s the part I never understood about abuse — that it doesn’t always feel like abuse. Sometimes, lots of the time, it felt like heaven.
I’m grateful to have gone through it. I learned a lot. I grew a lot. And now I know what so many of you who are reading the book already know — how to spot a controlling, abusive man from the get go. And I assure you: It won’t happen again.
In his own words:
― CGI fridays (Edward III), Thursday, 10 January 2013 17:00 (seven years ago) link
that seems plausible I guess
whatever is going on here seems sad and not good and I kind of feel like I want to stop gawking at it now
― drunk 'n' white's elements of style (Hurting 2), Thursday, 10 January 2013 17:02 (seven years ago) link
"seems plausible I guess" = the sugar-coating part xpost, I wasn't commenting on the story in the blog
― drunk 'n' white's elements of style (Hurting 2), Thursday, 10 January 2013 17:04 (seven years ago) link
― Solange Knowles is my hero (DJP), Thursday, 10 January 2013 17:08 (seven years ago) link
I wish ppl would stop using "feel badly."
― grossly incorrect register (in orbit), Thursday, 10 January 2013 17:09 (seven years ago) link
She's on the air right now!
Alisa Valdes Alisa Valdes @MizAlisa
About to go live on the radio with Amy Oliver on 1310 KFKA in CO to talk about #feministandcowboy. @gothambooks http://ow.ly/gHCCF
Alisa Valdes @MizAlisa
Listen in! I'm on live. http://ow.ly/gHEeG
― Ned Raggett, Thursday, 10 January 2013 17:12 (seven years ago) link
Seems to be talking about language issues right now.
― Ned Raggett, Thursday, 10 January 2013 17:13 (seven years ago) link
I can see why that post was taken down; actually putting up a video of the dude along with naming and shaming the agent at the publisher seem conducive to getting your ass sued
also I hate myself for this but her idea of physical perfection is a Gelfling cowboy?
― Solange Knowles is my hero (DJP), Thursday, 10 January 2013 17:14 (seven years ago) link
― grossly incorrect register (in orbit), Thursday, January 10, 2013 11:09 AM (1 minute ago) Bookmark Flag Post Permalink
unless they have a congenital insensitivity to pain
― REBEL YELL FOR HUGS (Austerity Ponies), Thursday, 10 January 2013 17:14 (seven years ago) link
― grossly incorrect register (in orbit), Thursday, 10 January 2013 17:25 (seven years ago) link
her publisher should probably just pulp the books at this point tbh
― autistic boy is surprisingly good at basketball (silby), Thursday, 10 January 2013 17:31 (seven years ago) link
The radio interview is annoying but I think it's the interviewer's doing.
― grossly incorrect register (in orbit), Thursday, 10 January 2013 17:32 (seven years ago) link
did the deleted post come up at all?? crazy if not
― goole, Thursday, 10 January 2013 17:32 (seven years ago) link
Nothing yet, but the interview is continuing.
― Ned Raggett, Thursday, 10 January 2013 17:33 (seven years ago) link
So far they've agreed that cowboys are hot and alpha-male behavior is understandably attractive to women because evolution. So this is definitely a good use of my time.
― grossly incorrect register (in orbit), Thursday, 10 January 2013 17:36 (seven years ago) link
so she basically had a 24-hour window of saying her book was a lie and her cowboy was a rapist? wtf is going on here
― goole, Thursday, 10 January 2013 17:40 (seven years ago) link
Oh okay now she's saying her new boyfriend wrote the cowboy a thank-you letter for having tamed the shrew. Verbatim, btw. We're done here.
― grossly incorrect register (in orbit), Thursday, 10 January 2013 17:40 (seven years ago) link
Yeah this is VERY weird. What the hell.
― Ned Raggett, Thursday, 10 January 2013 17:42 (seven years ago) link
Ugh. The most dispiriting thing about this is she's confused fuck-worthy with actually interesting for a relationship. Not only does she paint him as immensely unattractive (to me) in her deleted blog post but I immediately shy away from women who tend to be attracted to brutes as they invariably tend to be tedious. If you're attracted to assholes, fine, but don't expect me to listen to you complain that they're assholes later.
― Canaille help you (Michael White), Thursday, 10 January 2013 17:43 (seven years ago) link
― emil.y, Thursday, 10 January 2013 17:43 (seven years ago) link
This is all very, very weird to me.
― Ned Raggett, Thursday, 10 January 2013 17:52 (seven years ago) link
ned, how did you run into this initially?
― goole, Thursday, 10 January 2013 17:53 (seven years ago) link
― grossly incorrect register (in orbit), Thursday, 10 January 2013 17:36 (17 minutes ago) Permalink
― drunk 'n' white's elements of style (Hurting 2), Thursday, 10 January 2013 17:55 (seven years ago) link
― grossly incorrect register (in orbit), Thursday, January 10, 2013 12:40 PM Bookmark Flag Post Permalink
yeah this was on her blog as well
― drunk 'n' white's elements of style (Hurting 2), Thursday, 10 January 2013 17:56 (seven years ago) link
Rod Dreher. He had just posted earlier in the day yesterday on the Rosin review, and then he noticed or was forwarded the blogpost.
Setting aside other things, his take on it -- as he has a book due for release soon, a memoir of his sister -- was this:
To be fair, what would you do if, between the time your book was finished and it was published, its whole raison d’etre collapsed? You’d pay the advance back, is one thing. Surely, though, the publisher must have grasped that this story, and the storyteller, were both extremely unstable. What is Valdes supposed to have done? If it’s true the editor and publisher stonewalled her, then that seems to have been a really bad idea. Boy, I can’t wait till the real story comes out. What a mess.Valdes is right about the long lead time between turning in a manuscript and the book coming out. The MS for The Little Way Of Ruthie Leming locked sometime in September, but was essentially finished in August. The book won’t come out till early April — and it’s not because everyone at the publisher’s is sitting on their hands waiting. These things take time. What happened with The Feminist And the Cowboy is a nightmare for everybody — but it sounds like it ought not to have been a big surprise, given the characters involved.
Valdes is right about the long lead time between turning in a manuscript and the book coming out. The MS for The Little Way Of Ruthie Leming locked sometime in September, but was essentially finished in August. The book won’t come out till early April — and it’s not because everyone at the publisher’s is sitting on their hands waiting. These things take time. What happened with The Feminist And the Cowboy is a nightmare for everybody — but it sounds like it ought not to have been a big surprise, given the characters involved.
― Ned Raggett, Thursday, 10 January 2013 17:56 (seven years ago) link
(Responding to Goole's question.)
― Ned Raggett, Thursday, 10 January 2013 17:57 (seven years ago) link
― goole, Thursday, 10 January 2013 17:59 (seven years ago) link
"Try my delicious chocolate cakes!"*blogs* "THE CAKES ARE ACTUALLY MADE OUT OF SHIT!!!"*erases blog post**goes on radio*"Yes they're so rich and moist"
― drunk 'n' white's elements of style (Hurting 2), Thursday, 10 January 2013 18:00 (seven years ago) link
Slate, with the embarrassing title, "Ride 'Em Cowboy!"
First line: "Every era’s liberated woman gets the good fuck she deserves."
― REBEL YELL FOR HUGS (Austerity Ponies), Thursday, 10 January 2013 18:18 (seven years ago) link
That interviewer was just a terrible speaker and story-teller, she could barely think of a coherent idea to put into words, I don't think any one sentence finished the way it began. This is who gets a radio show?? In Colorado, I guess?
― grossly incorrect register (in orbit), Thursday, 10 January 2013 18:22 (seven years ago) link
I'm trying to be kind -- maybe she really needs the money from the book so is doing her best to sell it, but her comment is making me want to vomit.
― Solange and thanks for all the fish (Nicole), Thursday, 10 January 2013 18:23 (seven years ago) link
The verbal instructions the cowboy gives Valdes once she agrees to submit to him are a guide to daily living. No back-talking; no second-guessing; no sarcastic, smart-ass remarks. She must never exit the car unless he opens the door for her. She must never walk on the street side of the sidewalk. In one especially creepy scene, Valdes has just overheard another woman leave a voicemail for the cowboy saying she wishes he were joining her in the shower. The cowboy lies about the voicemail, and Valdes knows he is lying. But then she remembers some article she read saying that women were “biologically programmed” to find cheating men more attractive. “I was hurt, sad, and turned on.” He unbuckles his belt, and she throws her arms around his neck. “Biology,” she writes with a shrug.
― REBEL YELL FOR HUGS (Austerity Ponies), Thursday, 10 January 2013 18:24 (seven years ago) link
― Solange and thanks for all the fish (Nicole), Thursday, January 10, 2013 1:23 PM Bookmark Flag Post Permalink
I kind of feel like she has a moral responsibility, at very least, to NOT promote this book assuming the erased blog post is true, whether or not she needs the money
― drunk 'n' white's elements of style (Hurting 2), Thursday, 10 January 2013 18:27 (seven years ago) link
The Feminist and The Cowboy is a wild ride through a time that I both remember and, am happy to admit, I was never truly involved in. Yes, I believe in woman’s rights, I even tell my husband that I didn’t need him before and I don’t need him now, but, I WANT him in my life. There’s a difference. I love when he opens the door for me, when he offers to help with the housework, when he cooks dinner. I think it sets a wonderful example for our sons to see that Dad isn’t just sitting around expecting to be waited on hand and foot and is willing to be “there” for me. And, also for my sons to see that I am still an independent woman that does not always depend on the “man” for everything in my life. It took a lot of convincing on the part of “The Cowboy” to get Alisa to see that for herself.
So, yes, I enjoyed the book. It was nice reliving those days when the name “Gloria Steinem” put fear into the eyes of men and when woman stood up for what they believed in. But, I would never have gone to the extremes that Ms. Valdez did. Now, I know that most of you are too young to remember or even know about the woman’s movement but you can thank people like Alisa for opening a lot of doors for us today. This book was refreshing, witty and a fun read. It was written with a little bit of humor (her description of her dates were hysterical) and lots of deep, inner thoughts. I give her a lot of credit for admitting to her faults, for seeing herself for how she was, for finally submitting to “The Cowboy” and giving herself up to him and be willing to change for “love” even if all that she ever knew was being threatened. I wish Alisa and “The Cowboy” many happy and fulfilling years together and honestly hope that they both get their Happily Ever After. God knows that “The Cowboy” deserves it and Alisa has earned it.
― REBEL YELL FOR HUGS (Austerity Ponies), Thursday, 10 January 2013 18:31 (seven years ago) link
@MizAlisaDid you miss my radio interview with Amy Oliver this morning? No worries. Here's the podcast! I had such fun. Cool lady....
Did you miss my radio interview with Amy Oliver this morning? No worries. Here's the podcast! I had such fun. Cool lady....
― Ned Raggett, Thursday, 10 January 2013 18:33 (seven years ago) link
“An irresistible, post-feminist Taming of the Shrew. Don’t be scared by the premise. This is not a story about a woman relinquishing her identity. Quite the opposite. It is a riveting tale about how a brilliant, strong-minded woman liberated herself from a dreary, male-bashing, reality-denying feminism.” —Christina Hoff Sommers, author of The War Against Boys; How Misguided Feminism is Harming Our Young Men
“This is a real-life romance novel, as they are truly written, where a handsome, but flawed hero enhances the life of a woman battling her own demons. He doesn't save her. She doesn't change him… The book is insightful, sassy, sarcastic, intelligent, emotional and will challenge the preconceived concepts about conservatives and liberals and everyone in between.” –Julie Leto, New York Times bestselling author
“Valdes has written a thought-provoking exploration of her own missteps and the tremendous obstacles she has overcome to achieve happiness in the second half of her life.” —Publishers Weekly
― REBEL YELL FOR HUGS (Austerity Ponies), Thursday, 10 January 2013 18:34 (seven years ago) link
Such fun. xp
― Solange and thanks for all the fish (Nicole), Thursday, 10 January 2013 18:34 (seven years ago) link
Valdes talked glancingly about those rules in the interview but edited/elided to make them seem reasonable: instead of "never exit the car" it was, "let him open my door when we're in his home area, because in that environment it's a sign of respect." It seems to me like she's still editing the story of her experiences for each audience to get them on board, and I wonder how much of the story she's willing to admit and stand by, even to herself.
Sometimes it's too soon to look clearly on how wrong you were and how hurt you got, I can grok that, but I wish she wasn't doing it/didn't have to do it in public.
― grossly incorrect register (in orbit), Thursday, 10 January 2013 18:36 (seven years ago) link
We have an answer:
Alisa Valdes @MizAlisaTo those of you asking about the disappearance of yesterday's blog post: I was asked to take it down by my publisher, and did. The end.
To those of you asking about the disappearance of yesterday's blog post: I was asked to take it down by my publisher, and did. The end.
― Ned Raggett, Thursday, 10 January 2013 18:37 (seven years ago) link
the entire romance writers of america board of directors has now resigned
― mookieproof, Wednesday, 12 February 2020 20:39 (two weeks ago) link
I find myself wondering if this mass resignation was due to ethical considerations or because what they thought would be a prestige citation on their CV wasn't fun anymore.
― A is for (Aimless), Wednesday, 12 February 2020 20:44 (two weeks ago) link
xpost -- funnily enough, I was just thinking of Michael Field the other day -- read a biography about their life and work some years back.
― Ned Raggett, Tuesday, February 4, 2020 9:15 AM (one week ago) bookmarkflaglink
reading about Michael Field and their milieu is very interesting, i mean even if you ignore the whole incestuous auntie/niece victorian poetry duo aspect. their family were southcottians with links also to radical politics, which can take you down some interesting rabbit-holes
― frederik b. godt (jim in vancouver), Wednesday, 12 February 2020 21:03 (two weeks ago) link
oh aye, they ended up converting to catholicism also iirc?
― frederik b. godt (jim in vancouver), Wednesday, 12 February 2020 21:04 (two weeks ago) link