6.6.12

IWSG: When Mean People Have Too Much Time on Their Hands

Y'know, I love the internet.  It has opened up so many opportunities for me in all aspects of my life, most particularly writing.  And it's just terrific that people now have an easy vehicle by which to publicly express their opinions. The downside of that, of course, is that people now have an easy vehicle by which to publicly express their opinions---and cyber bullying isn't just for kids.

I've made it a practice to give drama queens a wide berth, but sometimes they hunt me down anyway. For example, I've recently discovered that on Goodreads, my book has been placed on reader shelves titled things like: "Authors behaving badly" "Authors I don't trust" "refuse to read" "I don't think so" "no way in hell" "Cheap ploys to make a buck" "not if I were dying" "this is not a real book." And can anyone tell me what "unethical slore" means??

I appreciate the free publicity, but it's weird, isn't it?  Especially considering that I'm not even sure what it is I've done to earn a spot on those lists. I've heard about an angry hoard of Twilight fanfiction readers who apparently think Stephenie Meyer invented the world and therefore anyone who's ever written a fanfiction of her work has no right to ever publish anything, so I'm gonna guess that's my crime. Yes, I write fanfiction.  Yes, at one point I even slapped Twilight names onto Three Daves and threw it online for reader feedback. But no matter how I turn my head around the issue, I just don't see how something like that could provoke such ire. I can only conclude that some people just want to be angry about something, no matter how illogical.
    
And so it is for us writers---if we want to put our work out there in the world, we're going to have to deal with the crazies on occasion. But don't let those mean-spirited jabs get you down, just do what you know is right and be grateful that you get to be you while they have to be angry, mean, nasty them.    

On the positive side of Goodreads, Three Daves has made it onto the
College Romance list! Feel free to throw me a vote & move it up the list. :)

Visit Alex J. Cavanaugh's place to see what more Insecure Writers have to say.


30 comments:

Stina Lindenblatt said...

I have no idea what fanfiction is, other than 50 Shades of Gray started out as fanfiction for Twilight.

I didn't realize bookshelves like that existed on Goodreads. Yikes. Great advice though. Those people are probably nasty in their personal and professional lives to. How needs them?

Brigitta Huegel said...

Dear Nicki,
I don't know fanfiction - but I will, when I have read your book. (I even haven't watched Twilight :-)
That said: nasty people are - nasty. They try to drop vinegar into your wine - don't let them do it (easier said than done, I know). Jealousy - that is their problem.
My best English friend Barefoot Doctor says: On the level of their development they are trying to give the best they can. Haha: sometimes that level isn't very high :-) Forgive them, then you can get rid of them in your mind... And remember: YOU have written a book that was published (congratulations!) - they didn't.

Kyra Lennon said...

That is just plain weird. But honestly, I have seen excellent writers being slammed for making one tiny remark that may have offended a couple of the wrong people. Instead of letting it get them down, they work harder. Your attitude to keep going is one that will take you far! :D

Heather Murphy said...

Geez! Some people can be so cruel! Well, I voted for you so I think it evens out :)

Suze said...

Sweetheart, I went over to GoodReads to vote you up the list and saw there's an interview video! I am scrambling for time like a maniac this morning but look forward to coming back and watching it.

Have much to say in response to this post and my time is just running out -- plus I have a kid I'm trying to convince to go to summer camp against her will because of, yep, you guessed it, a bully!

Anyway, I'm totally rambling but I'll be back with more time.

XXXXXX

Mama J said...

Some people do have too time on their hands. I don't get people who go out of their to be nasty.

Cherie Colyer said...

It is a shame that some spend their time bullying others. Wouldn't the world be a wonderful place if people kept their mean comments to themselves?

Johanna Garth said...

Sorry sweetie. That really is awful because they are personally attacking you. I agree. There are people who have way too much time on their hands. Just try to stay above it. Don't respond and don't sink to their level.

KarenG said...

I've never checked the lists for my books. Maybe I better not! I don't know why people have to be jerks about reviews but I think a lot of it has to do with jealousy and yes, just plain meanness.

Janie Junebug said...

I'm so sorry some poop heads have been nasty to you. I have your book on my amazon wish list and hope to order it soon.

Love,
Janie

Lynn Proctor said...

uh oh if you read my post today--you may assume i have too much time on my hands and maybe i do---but i would never want to be mean to someone--a side note--i had a blogger from the az challenge, make it so i cannot see his blog any longer--at first i was trying to see if he is still on the az list--but stopped looking---maybe he was not comfortable with my nice comments i had made on his photo blog--but i thought it was really weird and for a minute it hurt my feelings!

LindaK said...

Ew, how infantile. Slightly different, but my sister went on a TV show and there was an article about in our local paper. Some of the comments online were absolutely horrible - people slagging her off who had never met her and criticising her appearance etc. Really upsetting. I often forget that not everyone in the world is nice - I wish they were! I'm sure you're rising above those comments! Will vote for you :-)

Neurotic Workaholic said...

That's so mean for people to make lists and comments like that. Maybe they're jealous that you're writing something that's honest and real and they're not; they're the type of people who seem to spend more time writing things that hurt people than writing things that inspire people. People like that make me angry.

farawayeyes said...

WOW, I had no idea those lists even existed. I get whiny, but generally not mean,nasty or angry. Bummer for those folks. You keep hangin' in there.

Alex J. Cavanaugh said...

Now that is just weird! Why would someone do that to you? Crap, now I want to go look and see if my books are on any unflattering shelves.

Jennifer Lane said...

I LOVE that image of the mean girl! She has her underwear in a bunch. I think the anonymity of the internet might encourage such untoward behavior. I'm a little down that I didn't get put on the unethical slore list...it sounds intriguing.

Lara Schiffbauer said...

Well, those people are just rude, and I think you called it. Bullies are bullies, no matter where they might do their bullying. It stinks that the rest of us don't have much recourse against them, especially in the cyber-world. Mean people suck.

Kittie Howard said...

I just gave you Five Stars. Actually, I didn't give you anything. You earned every star. Three Daves is a terrific read.

As for the nasties, consider the source and move on. They aren't worth your time. I'm so sick and tired of that mean spirit out there where people are jumped on for the slightest little thing the collective 'they' don't like. I also think Goodreads needs to deal with obvious bullying in an up-front manner. Hiding behind freedoms doesn't cut it.

Suze said...

Aw! I love the first paragraph of Kittie's comment!

Sheesh, what else can I add but that when a person acts like a dick, it's a reflection of them, not on you. Sorry, but that's the frankest way I could put it!

I'm glad you posted this so you could get some votes, sweet cakes. Keep the faith! Now, off to watch you playing an Italian. ;)

Suze said...

Babe! OMG -- how much did I love seeing you in action! :D You're all skinny and cute and approachable!! Srsly, this makes me wanna meet you more.

All right, so can I just say that the portion in which you talk about making things accessible to the reader and editing from a reader's point of view -- having that be a focus of both your writing and revising process -- is something that has left an impact on me.

There are a lot of very cool bits of architecture on Galveston Island -- I can see where that would inspire. And hey, your interviewer is talking with her hands just as much as you. ;)

Great vid. Suze likes.

Kittie Howard said...

Just checked comments. Thanks, Nicki, for yours! You brought a smile to my face. You're a very talented author with the right to express yourself without fear of bullying. Your post is a wake-up call to what could happen to anyone, and I thank you for your true grit!

Tara Tyler said...

wth?? those people need to get a job, they sound bitter and self righteous! they are not average readers, but self appointed book critics with overinflated egos, believing what they say matters. i look forward to any reviews, bring it on, B's!

ha ha ha, i crack myself up!

Feather Stone said...

All I can say, with gritting teeth, is why does Goodreads encourage/support this kind of publicity? It sounds like they want to attract business with controversy. Is there the possibility that authors will get fed up with this unprofessional activity and go elsewhere to promote their books? Goodreads need to be more accountable.

Marian Vere said...

Thank You! That has always driven me CRAZY! Why bother making an "I will never read" shelf and the like? Is it really worth the effort to tell the word what you will not be reading, and are you really that full of yourself to think that we care?!? There is an audience for everything. EVERYTHING. And those who don't realize that should be taxed.

Emma said...

I do sympathize. I have been slammed by critics who claim the book was so bad they could only face a few pages. They than spend half an hour on a tirade of bile about a book they have not read. I am at a loss to understand these folk but you just have to plug along. Enjoyed your comments. Emma
http://www.emmacalin.blogspot.co.uk

Susan Oloier said...

Sorry that's happened to you, Nicki. Great advice, though.

I wrote an article about my son who has Trisomy 18 for The Daily Beast. It was from the heart. You would not believe the hateful comments that arose from that piece. Had to ignore them all, chalk it up to what you said: there are people who just have an innate need to be angry at someone.

I actually feel sorry for them. Their lives must be quite miserable.

L.G.Smith said...

Well that was an eye-opener. I had no idea people created crap shelves like that on Goodreads. I mean, I realize people do stuff like that because they're small people in a small world, and they have to exercise power SOMEHOW, but they obviously lose sight of the fact that they do it at the expense of another human being. Yes, writers are human beings too. Crazy, right? :D

On the flip side, congrats on making the College Romance list. Awesome!!

Stephen Tremp said...

I like your attitude! And yo can use "When Authors Go Bad."

DL Hammons said...

Some people are born just to be arbitrary!

Consider a vote thrown your way! :)

Keebles said...

I completely understand!! As a former Art major, I dealt a lot with criticisms that had absolutely NOTHING to do with the quality of the work. It's probably why I have the skin of a rhino!