Why You Gotta Be So Mean?


What makes one writer think it’s okay to take shots at another. Is it simply criticism? Is it honest disappointment? Is it meant to push the targeted fellow author to try harder? Or is it that bitter old crow, jealousy? I’ve only been in the writing community for about three years. For the most part, everybody is very cool and supportive. I’ve said it reminds of the punk rock community I’ve come out of where everyone helps to lift up everyone else. We’re in this together. Family.

Everybody has an opinion. This, I think, is the self-justification for publicly chain-sawing one of our contemporaries. Okay, if your reviewing someone’s novel, go ahead, give us your opinion. Tell us what you like and what you don’t. What worked and what didn’t. One of the problems I have is with writers who want to use social media to try and chop down bigger writers (Stephen King seems to be the number one target). Why? What purpose does it really serve?  How do you think that makes you look? I wouldn’t do it. I don’t get the motivation behind these types of public posts. Maybe it is a sincere disappointment in the author’s work, but damn if it doesn’t come off nasty.  I understand it’s an opinion, but if I feel like there are some things that you can keep on a more personal level (in private conversation, maybe a drink with a couple of friends), but plastering it on your Facebook page is lame. If you’ve got nothing good to say…

I’ll tell you what I’m going to do from here on out. I’m gonna unfriend these guys. Yep. I don’t have time to read this unnecessary garbage. There’s no place for it at my table. Some people tend to get cynical and jaded by being in the arts and entertainment business for a good chunk of time. Maybe I just haven’t been here long enough. I hope that’s not the case.


How about this: Instead of telling us that someone is virtually unreadable, how about you just praise someone you enjoy. There’s enough negativity in this world already. To quote my friend, Terry Pole, keep it on the pos.


6 responses to “Why You Gotta Be So Mean?”

  1. *Long slow clap*

    Beautifully said. Life is too short to surround yourself with negativity.

  2. Great post, Glenn, and I agree.

  3. Vitina Molgaard Avatar
    Vitina Molgaard

    Glenn…As a reviewer I have to agree.There are so many overly critical people out in the community just waiting to attack. My Opinion….A good many of them are just unhappy and want to share their misery . It certainly is not seen by me as an honest way to speak up about other writers. Respect seems to be slipping away from a great number of people…and by respect I mean at the very least mutual respect for each other and the efforts that have been put forth. Never do I or would I review a piece of work and attack the writer or their work. If I found it impossible to read , and I actually have found a very rare few, I reach out to them personally and speak with them on it…not place it in a review…I disagree with those who do just that…and unfortunately I see horrible things just in comments alone.
    So nice post here and keep on doing what you do so well….Vitina

  4. bravo.

  5. Most of the time if I don’t like something I just don’t review it. Hell, with a book I probably won’t even finish reading it, how could I possibly review it?

  6. I think its a mixture of elements. Resentment for those more successful, or more talented. And sometimes people tear you down just to make themselves feel better. Yes, the world is full of small “petty” people. But then again we can’t discount the self-proclaimed literary expert. Those people who have read a whole lot of books and fancy themselves self-made critics.

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