Thursday, May 10, 2012

Ranty Thursday

No, you didn't misread the title there. I'm about to go on the kind of rant that if I were a child would have gotten me a severe case of time out. Or a spanking. And yes, I was spanked, and no, I don't believe any harm came from it. I'm not a violent person, I don't take out my anger in violent ways, and I'm a fully functioning member of society.

No, when I get mad, I either talk it out or write it out. Guess which one I'm doing today.

First, I will preface everything I'm about to say/write by admitting freely that at one time I was a huge fan of Laurell K. Hamilton. This was probably about... five or six years ago, I can't really remember. It was right around the time Danse Macabre came out. I bought the first book on a whim, because I was looking for something new to read and I really, really liked it. I tore through the entire series up to the current book in maybe a week and a half. Keep in mind that I was still in school and working full time, so reading over a dozen books in less than two weeks with a full course load and 35 hours or so at work is an accomplishment. I really did enjoy the books, even when they shifted in to more sex/less story and kept shifting that way.

I will also admit that LKH is one of the reasons I started writing again. Not the only one and not even the best one, but she was one of them. Everything I'd written before was kind of fluffy and chick litty and just entirely too cute. I still say I'm proud of the book I finished just because it was the first book I wrote all the way through, outside of crap in middle and high school. Guilty Pleasures led me to other urban fantasy/paranormal romance books and for that I'll be grateful.

But gratitude only goes so far. And it has hit the motherfucking wall.

(Warning: If you don't like foul language, you're going to want to stop reading right now. I mean it. This is a non-censored blog and I'm not holding back)

For those of you who either didn't know or don't give two shits, LKH released an outtake, for lack of a better term, of her upcoming book, Kiss the Dead. The outtake, Beauty, is just that. It's a scene that was cut from the final draft of KtD. The publisher tacked on a chapter or two of the upcoming book and that's it. That's all. It's not a story. It's an outtake.

Do I care? Nope. I did the same thing to intro both the Jude Magdalyn series and the Frankie Post series. Difference being that I included the first third of each book with the flash fiction piece, I stated it was flash fiction with a sample, and (since I'm with an indie press) the prices were cheaper. I understand the price isn't in LKH's control, but the easy way around this, as pointed out by numerous other people, is to just offer it on the website. But let's not digress here.

I care because once again, LKH has decided that if you don't like her work, you are the following things:

the involuntarily celibate
wannabe writers
(full of)sexual frustration

I'm not making any of this shit up. These are her own words (except for the stuff in parentheses--those be mine), for all the world to see on Twitter. Yes, Twitter, one of those social networking sites that now has material in the Library of Congress. If this was expressed in a personal e-mail that somehow got hacked, I wouldn't be as annoyed, because writers are allowed to vent.


Even more important, you don't make broad, sweeping statements designed to alienate people who may have been on the fence about continuing to buy your works. Let's dissect those wonderfully complex analyses of people you don't know from a goddamn hole in the wall.

Jealous--this implies that I want what you have, which I'm going to assume is either your sex life or your writing career. NEWFLASH: I DON'T WANT EITHER. I have my own writing career, and while it's still in the growing stages, at least it's growing. My fanbase may be small, but it's solid and full of wonderful people. Thanks to social media, I've been able to connect with amazing individuals and build relationships that I hope last a long time. And I've seen your husband. I really don't want him. Which leads to the next point.

Involuntarily celibate--here's a concept that may not have crossed your mind: voluntarily celibate. Yep, I'm putting it out there for the world to know. The only person I'm having sex with at the moment is myself. There are a multitude of reasons for that, chief among them being I don't have the time for a relationship. Could I pick up a guy in a bar and get my pipes cleaned? Hell, yes. I'm no supermodel, but there are nights when picking up a guy at a bar is like shooting fish in a barrel. I don't do that for two big reasons: I don't want diseases and I have standards. Since I don't have time for a relationship and I don't want to pick up guys in bars, I'm choosing to not have sex with other people right now. That would me (let's say it together) voluntarily celibate.

(05/12 ETA: It's come to my attention that the above statements about diseases and standards could be construed as "slut shaming". Please know this was NOT my intent at all and I apologize for having given the impression that individuals [men or women] who have one night stands are morally bankrupt.

This was really more a jab at myself--statistically speaking, people who engage in sex, even safe sex, with a higher number of partners are more at risk for STI's than people who are monogamous. Knowing my luck, which is seldom good on the dating front, I'd wind up with something even if I used protection. Really, my luck is that bad. As to  the statement about standards, I think most people can agree that beer/liquor goggles are at least somewhat real. I don't know how they work for everyone else, but I know when mine are in full effect, I'm likely to make decisions that will have me cringing in the cold, hard light of day. Instead of beating myself up because I didn't live up to my own standards, I do my best to stay away from bad decision making situations.

I feel as long as your emotional and physical needs are being met in a safe, healthy, consensual manner, more power to you. What works for one person isn't going to work for another--and there's nothing wrong with that. It'd be boring if we all did the exact same thing. And nobody would win at Never Have I Ever. Again, my apologies for any misunderstanding about the previous point. Back to the regularly scheduled program)

Sexual frustration--I'm not sexually frustrated, because I can have sex with myself. And I do, quite often. I like to joke that I own stock in Duracell. There is nothing wrong with masturbation. NOTHING. I would go so far as to tell anyone who hasn't had sex to spend some quality time on themselves first, so they have a better idea of what does and doesn't work for them. I'm always surprised to hear my female friends so they don't masturbate. I feel like you're missing out on numerous opportunities for exploration there.

In addition to being able to have sex with myself, I can write about sex. Shocking, right? Before I started writing books, I wrote erotica for an online site. And since I'm so pissy, I'm going to link to that site. Right here:

Literotica was the first writing of a sexual nature that I did. I'd perused the site before, because just like I believe in masturbation I believe in using whatever aids you need (within legal limits) to get you across the finish line. When I wanted to test my hand at writing again, I posted on Literotica. So no, I'm not sexually frustrated.
Finally: wannabe writers.

Hold on. I need a second. Because my brain just fucking exploded with anger.

It took me forever to find the exact quote and I apologize yesterday for being unable to tell a R from a W, but here it is:

"Don’t ask me about being a writer. If when you wake up in the morning, you can think of nothing but writing, then you’re a writer." -- Rainer Maria Rilke, Letters to a Young Poet

Let's take a second and compare here, sparky. Should I believe the words of one of the most influential poets of the early 19th century or someone who has to look to her fans via social media to help remind her what color someone's eyes are in a book? Yeah, I thought the same damn thing.

I AM A WRITER. Period. Point blank. I don't need your antiquated, narrow-minded viewpoint of what constitutes a "writer" to validate my existence and my career choice. I'm a writer because I live and breathe writing, because it's something in my blood and on my mind and in my heart and soul. Some people are born to sing, others born to perform, still others to serve and protect. I was born to write. It's what I am. Just because I haven't reached the NYT doesn't mean I'm not a writer.

Having dissected all her juvenile, "stop being mean to me" statements, I'm going to say why I haven't liked her most recent books. Wait for it. It's going to be shocking.


Really. It's that simple. I didn't like them. I felt like LKH stopped writing for fans and started writing solely for herself. When she killed off Haven in Bullet, I nearly threw the fucking book across the room. Because it was stupid. She has one character who doesn't completely fall under the spell of Anita's magical vagina and she kills him off. Jesus Christ, really? REALLY? You don't see that as maybe an opportunity for growth or some shit? No, it's a reason to kill them off.

When I kill someone off, it's because they had to die. Their death is going to drive the story or series arc forward. It's not because I'm not fond of them. That's professional. Not personal.

Long story short, LKH just declared war on a shitton of people. Think I'm joking? Both Jennifer Armintrout and Naomi Clark have already voiced their opinions loud and clear, Naomi going so far as to address LKH directly. I haven't seen a response yet, probably because the woman can't think of an intelligent one.

I'm not going to make this a priority in my life. I have things to do like, you know, WRITE. As long as LKH can keep the total stupidity of her thoughts to herself, I'm going to be content with this rant.

But if she doesn't... well. I went to public school. I know how to fight, bitch.


  1. Can I get WHOOP!! That was one of the best rants! I totally agree with ALL of it including spanking kids. It is apparent LKH's ego has taken on a personality of its own. How sad. Were I her publisher I'd seriously rethink my relationship with such a PR nightmare!

  2. I think you can tell a lot about a person by the way they respond to criticism. That's all I'm going to say.

  3. Can I get a "HELL YEAH!" dear lady?

    This is so why I quit reading her books long before Bullet. The books got so bad and the plots all but vanished when Anita became the Crotch of Doom and all men were sucked in to it and forever a slave to her. :-p

    She needs to take off her purple tinted glasses and start looking at her mental health state. She is her own worst enemy when it comes to her writing - she never believes she does anything wrong and I feel sorry for her editors and publishers! Soon, she'll be as bad as Cassie Edwards and ripping off scientific papers without giving them due credit.

  4. While I'm not a writer and have never aspired to be (career military) my story of reading the books and subsequent opinion is pretty much the same as yours, no one can escape the suck (her magical snatch) and live to tell about it, lol.

  5. Your rant is love. I started reading her stuff back when Guilty Pleasures first came out way back when and I loved them. As her harem grew, the men lost all of their pride, and Richard's character was destroyed, I liked them less and less. Now, I can't even remember the last one that I read. And if the books didn't turn me off enough, LKH's attitude finished the job for me.

    The wannabe writers thing really hits a nerve, too. I haven't gotten published yet, but I'm still a writer. I still sit and stare in angry frustration when I can't push out a single word and grin with giddy glee when I look up and I have a few thousand words going. If I had had any respect at all for her left (which I didn't), I would have lost the rest of it with that comment.

    This was a good rant and you should feel good about it.

  6. My review of her latest piece on my blog. It speaks for me on this matter. However, screw them, fuck that, just keep writing. Nice to meet you and end of litany. ;)