Yep, that’s all she wrote. IMO this is the funniest (and pithiest) review I’ve ever gotten. The disgust in her tone is so clear that I laugh every time I see that review. Do I agree with her? Nope, I don’t think I’ve ever written a dumb book. Certainly I’ve written some that were better than others, but to my mind Dark Star is an excellent book, but everyone is entitled to their own opinion.
And yes, I’ve gotten reviews that don’t make me laugh. Reviews that were mean spirited or inaccurate. I’ve even had authors send their flying monkeys after me. Some have pissed me off, and y’all know I can be hot headed, but I learned long ago that it’s unprofessional to respond to a review. Let alone the lengths that crazy woman in The Guardian article went to. I know it’s a common trope that we authors think of these books as our children. (Don’t ask me where that comes from, after all, we don’t sell our children! At least I hope not. To me it ranks right up there with that “I would write for free bullshit. No hell I wouldn’t!) But they are like our children in one way only; once we launch them into the world there’s nothing we can do about how the world receives them. It’s crucial that we as professionals recognize this fact, and, if nothing else, get some friends who will reign you in when the crazy strikes. Because, damn,
One thought on “Dumb As Hell”
I meant to leave a comment yesterday to say, if nothing else, what I liked about this was your smart as hell response (not the “dumb as hell” review). The thing about critics, certainly in relation to writers, is that they take no real risk putting their work (as a critic) out into the world. Everyone is entitled to their opinion, sure, but how seriously should it be treated if somebody isn’t even brave enough to elaborate and support their opinion, and just kind of bombs their target with it? I think good criticism is the type which opens up an intelligent conversation about the work, regardless of the critic’s reaction to it. The review you mentioned here strikes me as a pretty good example of the exact opposite.