Literary Clusterfucks 2013

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God I loathe the petty and abusive statusgrubbing of men like that. Hope he sinks.

president of deluded fruitcakes anonymous (silby), Friday, 23 August 2019 04:55 (six months ago) link

two months pass...

Bestselling Authors Band Together to Dunk on a College Student

https://jezebel.com/how-to-use-the-fictional-teenage-girl-1839863520

mookieproof, Thursday, 14 November 2019 20:48 (three months ago) link

Every time this thread gets bumped I assume YA fiction is involved.

pomenitul, Thursday, 14 November 2019 20:51 (three months ago) link

Why are people who exclusively consume culture made for children always so angry about it

― A funny tinge happened on the way to the forum (wins), Tuesday, March 5, 2019 7:03 PM (eight months ago) bookmarkflaglink

YouGov to see it (wins), Thursday, 14 November 2019 20:58 (three months ago) link

We are very sorry to @SarahDessen for the comments made in a news article by one of our alums in reference to our 2016 Common Read. They do not reflect the views of the university or Common Read Committee. (1/4)

— Northern State U. (@NorthernStateU) November 13, 2019

pathetic!!!!!!

j., Thursday, 14 November 2019 21:06 (three months ago) link

One of the tweets Dessen liked yesterday read “Stop shaming girls for the things they enjoy.” But what about shaming them for the things they don’t enjoy?

Not enjoying something is self-evidently negative and counter-productive and deserving of our suspicion.

pomenitul, Thursday, 14 November 2019 21:10 (three months ago) link

hmm. Not sure about this one. The "college student" graduated in 2017, was quoted in an article saying: “She’s fine for teen girls. But definitely not up to the level of Common Read. So I became involved simply so I could stop them from ever choosing Sarah Dessen.” Dessen shares the quote with the girl's name scribbled out, with a "authors are humans too" message, then I suppose her followers start trashing the girl? Fans suck, I guess.

Muswell Hillbilly Elegy (President Keyes), Thursday, 14 November 2019 21:13 (three months ago) link

Like is Dessen not allowed to comment on stuff people say about her in print?

Muswell Hillbilly Elegy (President Keyes), Thursday, 14 November 2019 21:14 (three months ago) link

lol 50% of the fans in her replies are fellow YA authors who are like 40, they think they're 'standing' with someone because 'it could be any of us'

j., Thursday, 14 November 2019 21:16 (three months ago) link

wonder if ya authors' toxic defensiveness stems from their insecurity over taking the easy money way out

maura, Thursday, 14 November 2019 21:16 (three months ago) link

PK the problem is that she extracted an apology from the college and hounded the student off twitter, using her follower-clout, for voicing the relatively non-challoppy op that maybe college students should read books at grade level, an op that you would think a successful (?) author could let be aired with a bit more grace

j., Thursday, 14 November 2019 21:18 (three months ago) link

tears

Muswell Hillbilly Elegy (President Keyes), Thursday, 14 November 2019 21:21 (three months ago) link

Dessen also provided zero context for the quote and basically invited her followers to go on the attack.

jmm, Thursday, 14 November 2019 21:21 (three months ago) link

p much the same as every artist who links to a negative review

Muswell Hillbilly Elegy (President Keyes), Thursday, 14 November 2019 21:22 (three months ago) link

Authors are real people. We put our heart and soul into the stories we write often because it is literally how we survive in this world. I’m having a really hard time right now and this is just mean and cruel. I hope it made you feel good. pic.twitter.com/tt2CN13n2a

— sarahdessen (@sarahdessen) November 12, 2019

what good is being a successful best-selling author if one young woman in south dakota doesn't like your work? ;_;

mookieproof, Thursday, 14 November 2019 21:23 (three months ago) link

p much the same as every artist who links to a negative review

well yeah, which is corny and shld generally be beneath most artists above age 18

“Hakuna Matata,” a nihilist philosophy (One Eye Open), Thursday, 14 November 2019 21:25 (three months ago) link

from her TL it looks like dessen intially ID'd the woman then thought better of it and deleted the tweet and replaced it with the one w/her name redacted, too late for her fans (and ppl who called her out for bullying)

“Hakuna Matata,” a nihilist philosophy (One Eye Open), Thursday, 14 November 2019 21:34 (three months ago) link

There’s also the thing with her responding “I love you” to another YA author’s “Fuck that fucking bitch.”

JoeStork, Thursday, 14 November 2019 21:37 (three months ago) link

I love that the quote in question begins "she's fine for teen girls", which is now The Worst Cruelest Thing you can possibly say to an author of books for children in 2019

“Hakuna Matata,” a nihilist philosophy (One Eye Open), Thursday, 14 November 2019 21:39 (three months ago) link

That’s a lousy thing. I am sorry you had to see it. People have strange and inflated ideas about their taste level

— roxane gay (@rgay) November 12, 2019

"i am sorry you had to see it."

(The Other) J.D. (J.D.), Thursday, 14 November 2019 21:39 (three months ago) link

Regardless, the university's apology is truly pathetic. It's not even their apology to make.

jmm, Thursday, 14 November 2019 21:40 (three months ago) link

i don't care what ppl read but honestly every time i encounter one of these stories i come a little closer to just saying seriously fuck the cult of modern YA fiction and the ppl who are so goddamned precious about it

(The Other) J.D. (J.D.), Thursday, 14 November 2019 21:44 (three months ago) link

'had to see it' because dessen is a die-hard reader of the aberdeen (south dakota) news

mookieproof, Thursday, 14 November 2019 21:45 (three months ago) link

"People have strange and inflated ideas about their taste level" = 2019 USA in a nutshell. "People who act like they prefer adult things over childrens things are obviously lying phonies."

“Hakuna Matata,” a nihilist philosophy (One Eye Open), Thursday, 14 November 2019 21:48 (three months ago) link

Peak populism tbh.

pomenitul, Thursday, 14 November 2019 21:50 (three months ago) link

my gf really loved that roxane gay book hunger and i was like "that's cool" but i was also like "how can that book possibly be good? i have seen roxane gay's tl"

-_- (jim in vancouver), Thursday, 14 November 2019 21:52 (three months ago) link

the second part was interior monologue

-_- (jim in vancouver), Thursday, 14 November 2019 21:52 (three months ago) link

i mean, i think there's a case for students to study and think about literature written for teens and children as well as literature for non-teens and non-children (which presumably at some point wd entail reading them): there are a whole bunch of interesting aspects to think abt and discuss and explore, which might well illuminate issues in other modes of literature

and when clowns like martin amis mouth off abt kidlit they can fuck right off (where the wild things are >>> any martin amis yet written or to come)

but this doesn't seem to be about that at all: if yr arguing that good writing aimed teens is exactly as demanding and challenging to write as good writing aimed at non-teens -- which may be true, good writing is hard -- then surely part of what's claimed as demanding and challenging is that you've achieved successfully aiming yr book-for-teens at teens rather than at non-teens, why so enraged?

mark s, Thursday, 14 November 2019 21:56 (three months ago) link

(writing posts on ilx that make the point i intend to make with any clarity: also hard)

mark s, Thursday, 14 November 2019 22:00 (three months ago) link

Mainly this story has fucked me up because by my count we weren’t due for a reset of the “someone somewhere says something mild and accurate about a piece of children’s entertainment and the creators and consumers of same shit their pants in protest” infinite loop until this coming Monday at the earliest

YouGov to see it (wins), Thursday, 14 November 2019 22:08 (three months ago) link

roxane gay got that NYT twerp slapped down so she's not all bad (this is bad tho)

mark s, Thursday, 14 November 2019 22:25 (three months ago) link

the roxane gay tweet isn't too bad -- seems more 'support for a friend' than 'fuck this fucking bitch' at least

mookieproof, Thursday, 14 November 2019 22:39 (three months ago) link

There's a lot about Roxane Gay I like, but she also has a tendency to pick out random tweets she doesn't like from nobodies and sending her base after them, so it's kinda in character.

soaring skrrrtpeggios (jon /via/ chi 2.0), Thursday, 14 November 2019 22:46 (three months ago) link

I've always felt that both Sarah Dessen and Roxane Gay pretty much suck, and this news has done nothing to change that.

I think the thing that pisses me off the most is the hypocrisy of Dessen and her supporters acting like they're defending the literary tastes of teen girls, and by extension Women's Literature in general, when Dessen has in fact made a career out of writing down to teen girls. The problem with her books isn't that they're for teens, it's that they don't respect the audience they're written for. They're the caramel macchiatos of YA literature, cheap imitation books by someone who assumes teen girls will swallow any old slop as long as it's sugary enough.

Lily Dale, Thursday, 14 November 2019 23:56 (three months ago) link

If you’re not willing to defend your work in a principled way, you shouldn’t be writing. The whole “writers pour their hear and soul into their work etc” trope is simply manipulative.”

treeship., Friday, 15 November 2019 00:04 (three months ago) link

Gay's "I'm sorry you had to see it" alone makes it a terrible, terrible tweet. You say that to someone who had to witness a terrible accident, gore or running into Trump or something. C'mon. A teenager doesn't like your books, that's it. The rallying around of bestseller authors with huge audiences going 'it's so unfair! it's so mean and cruel!' in public is nagl and laughable. Perhaps not as bad as Northern State U ruthlessly throwing one of their own students under the bus, but still really bad.

Le Bateau Ivre, Friday, 15 November 2019 00:05 (three months ago) link

tbh “I’m sorry that happened to you” and variants have become so ubiquitous and deployed so readily after any old shit that I have trouble not reading it as sarcastic most of the time, so the disconnect barely registered there

YouGov to see it (wins), Friday, 15 November 2019 00:09 (three months ago) link

I hate everyone involved in this besides the one woman who had an opinion about one YA writer. I read a lot of YA and never heard of Dessan so obv I read the better/wrong YA.

Yerac, Friday, 15 November 2019 00:25 (three months ago) link

This is so shitty and Dessan whoever needs to get her shit together and BE BEST.

Yerac, Friday, 15 November 2019 00:27 (three months ago) link

Northern State U ruthlessly throwing one of their own students under the bus

Seriously, why did they even think they had to say anything at all?

jmm, Friday, 15 November 2019 00:34 (three months ago) link

It's baffling. Them going out of their way, basically saying "sorry our student didn't like your book, we're sorry she was thinking critically and was thinking for herself. We sure wouldn't want to teach our students thinking for themselves!"... It's so weird.

Le Bateau Ivre, Friday, 15 November 2019 00:38 (three months ago) link

hate to simplify things when everyone is in the middle of re-establishing gender dynamics but this is some Lena Dunham level reactionary bad bullshit. And she would only complain if it was happening to a friend.

Yerac, Friday, 15 November 2019 01:10 (three months ago) link

there's a case for students to study and think about literature written for teens and children as well as literature for non-teens and non-children

english departments already do it, for pretty sound reasons, too—a significant portion of their students are bound for careers where they will be working with this lit and its primary audience—but just impressionistically it seems like the reactions of fans of the author, and of the college, have something to do with the capture of some segment of the higher ed faculty by people who have a professional stake in the commercial side of YA lit. there are a lot more niches for 'creative productivity' for lower-tier academics to fill now, and common-read initiatives are part of colleges' plans for marketing themselves to prospective students, which gives them incentives to appear commercially friendly to authors who can sweeten the pot with personal appearances and whatever.

j., Friday, 15 November 2019 02:38 (three months ago) link

My main thought about the latest YA thing is that it seems like another example in pop culture of folks making pop products - YA novels, comic book movies, pop music - expecting a level of critical deference that would've been unthinkable 20 years ago.

— Osita Nwanevu (@OsitaNwanevu) November 14, 2019

j., Friday, 15 November 2019 02:39 (three months ago) link

Happens in poetry, too. All these people whom I respected fucking bawling over Mary effing Oliver when she passed, and 15 years ago anybody who knew anything didn't give a fat fuck about Oliver or anything she wrote. Faux populist outrage is just a huge thing, it will forever remain annoying.

blue light or electric light (the table is the table), Friday, 15 November 2019 02:58 (three months ago) link

Relevant insane tweet for this thread: pic.twitter.com/WRzFvEniok

— Lincoln Michel (@TheLincoln) November 14, 2019

Andrew Farrell, Friday, 15 November 2019 09:55 (three months ago) link

Jennifer Weiner is utter trash, but that is totally insane whether you like her or not.

blue light or electric light (the table is the table), Friday, 15 November 2019 13:03 (three months ago) link

i mean we also have to think about who these writers are, though. they're mostly upper- to upper-middle class women whose feminism extends only so far as representation— the VIDA list means everything to them, but the content of what is on that list is negligible. it's a retrograde style of feminism that women of their class status engage in because to engage in serious, on the ground work with other (blacker, browner, more poor) women would be to betray their class status.

blue light or electric light (the table is the table), Friday, 15 November 2019 13:21 (three months ago) link

bleh, haven't had my coffee yet, sorry for word soup.

basically:
these women engage in simple representational feminism because to do otherwise would make them traitors to their class, and requires nuance. dunking on a student from small school in the Dakotas because she didn't get with their program is part and parcel of their whole schtick.

blue light or electric light (the table is the table), Friday, 15 November 2019 13:24 (three months ago) link


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