What Stace had to say on Friday, June 1st, 2012
The Dating Game

Imagine this scenario.

You meet a guy. Let’s say he’s a friend of a friend. And you like him. He’s attractive, he’s smart, he’s funny. Everything about this guy seems tailor-made for a long and happy and loving relationship with you. You’re pretty into this guy, and after an afternoon of chatting, you’re even more into him.

And of course you assume he’s into you, in return. Why wouldn’t he be? You too are attractive–if you say so yourself. You’re smart and funny–if you say so yourself. You’re charming and witty, you like a lot of the music and movies and TV shows he likes. So it only makes sense that the two of you should start dating immediately, and go on to fifty fun-filled years of happy love-filled home- and baby-making. Right?

So maybe you–a little shy–start hunting around to see him if he’s interested. Like, just to see what he thinks of you, and if he found you as delightful as he must have–why wouldn’t he, right, because you are indeed delightful!–and as delightful as you found him, then maybe he’ll call you, or you’ll call him, and there you’ll be picking china patterns. Maybe you look around online to see if he’s mentioned you. Maybe you see he did.

Except…He didn’t find you charming at all. Not even attractive. He thought you were obtuse and annoying. he thought you talked too much and had nothing to say, so his mind kept drifting during your conversation. He found the way you spoke irritating. You’re blonde and he likes brunettes, or vice versa. You’re very slim and he likes women with a little meat on their bones or vice versa. He hates women who say “Totally.” He hates all accountants on general principle so just talking to you was like pulling teeth for him. He basically thinks you suck.

Or maybe he doesn’t think you suck, he just thought you were kind of meh. He didn’t feel a spark. He wasn’t really attracted to you. he thought you were okay, and your conversation was an okay way to spend an hour or so, but he’s not interested in continuing it. The chemistry just isn’t there.

So what do you do, when you discover this guy had the nerve to not fall in love with you? Perfect, amazing, deep, smart, incredible, touching, delightful you?

If you’re an adult, you shrug and move on. Maybe it stings a little. Maybe it stings for an hour or two, even, or a day or two. Maybe you’re a little hurt and confused. But you know there’s nothing you can do to change his mind, and you know that hey, okay, that guy didn’t like you enough to want to fill you with his tiny babies, but you know there are other guys out there that will, it’s not like you’ve never ever had a boyfriend ever. In fact, you’ve met a few other guys recently who really liked you and called you and wanted to buy you dinner. So this is obviously just that guy’s personal taste, right?

Now, if you’re NOT an adult, but some sort of ridiculous child, maybe you call the guy up to tell him you’re really offended that he didn’t like you. Maybe you tell him that he’s obviously not smart enough to understand the Wonder Of You. You call him an idiot. You tell him that if he was a better person he would want to date you. You tell him that he obviously has some sort of grudge, that you bet he’s been conspiring with someone else to make you feel bad, and what does he know anyway? He’s not a woman, so how can he know what’s really good about women?

If you’re REALLY a ridiculous child, you start spreading gossip about him. You tell everyone you know that Brett McSingleguy is a total dickhead, that he’s sexist and stupid, that he thinks he’s so great. Maybe you start following him around and telling women he meets that he’s scum. Maybe you start leaving nasty notes on his Facebook page, or sending emails to his boss accusing him of all manner of things. Maybe you start stalking him. Maybe when he calls the cops on you, you get even angrier.

In other words, maybe you are a fucking psycho. Maybe you should grow the fuck up. Maybe you should get a fucking life. Maybe you should leave this poor man, whose only crime was to not like you, alone.

Anyone see the parallels there?

Now tell me. How many people out there would really see one guy not liking you as a reason to start stalking him and smearing him and denigrating him like Glenn Close in Fatal Attraction? I’m guessing not that many.

So why is it so much fucking harder when it’s your book the guy just doesn’t like that much?

He’s one goddamn guy. Get over it. You’re not going to change his mind by arguing with him, and you’re not going to make any friends by going all Crazy-Bitch on him.

He doesn’t like you. Just grow the fuck up and get over it. If that one guy’s opinion is that fucking important to you that you have to fixate on it, perhaps you are in need of professional help.

Do I see that it can be a bit harder when the guy in question has lots of people who listen to his opinions? Sure. But do you really think all of his friends are sheep who just blindly follow whatever he says? “Oh. Kevin said that girl is dumb. I think she’s pretty and seems nice, but I’ll never even speak to her after he said that. I don’t think for myself, tra-la-la!”

Jesus Christ, guys. Seriously. If you can’t handle reviews, don’t read them. Actually, if you can’t handle reviews to the point where you have hissybaby fits and actually–I cannot believe I have to type this as an actual thing that happened–out a reviewer’s personal information on the internet, to the point where you become sort sort of crusader on the world’s most maladjusted and silly crusade, then I seriously think you probably lack the emotional depth, maturity, and wisdom necessary to write a book that anyone would actually want to read. Both because you are a fucking psycho, and because I cannot believe your actual work is any good, because creating good writing is about accepting criticism, admitting to ourselves where our books’ flaws are, and working to fix them. Over and over. Because creating good books is about recognizing that not every human being on this planet is the same. Humanity is not a hivemind. Readers are not a hivemind. Some people like some things, and some people like other things. That’s part of being real people and not cardboard cutouts. If you don’t understand that different people think and feel differently about different things, what the fuck kinds of books are you writing? Seriously.

And seriously, stalking people is never a good idea. It will not and does not win you sympathy. No one, on hearing that you got so angry that that one guy wouldn’t go out with you you started stalking him, is going to think that clearly you’re in the right here. NO ONE. (At least no one decent. But really, if Mark David Chapman or Buck Thurman would be on your side in the argument, maybe you should rethink your position.)

Nobody owes you a date. Nobody owes you a good review. Grow up.

(NOTE: Comments are temporarily disabled on this entry due to spammers. If you have a comment you want to leave, use the comment form to let me know.)

27 comments to “The Dating Game”

  1. Sarah
    Comment
    1
    · June 1st, 2012 at 8:03 am · Link

    oh Stacia, I love your blog! I wouldn’t suggest that anyone EVER should get into a verbal sparring match with you, unless they’re a fan of evisceration. Clean and thorough, and I still have no idea who you’re talking about, lol, but it doesn’t matter, because it’s so damn fun to read!



  2. David Jรณn Fuller
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    2
    · June 1st, 2012 at 8:12 am · Link

    Love this post, Stacia. I think writers ought to do theatre for a while, just to develop a thicker skin. The idea you would declare a jihad against someone who gave you a bad review is ludicrous.



    • MrsJoseph
      Comment
      2.1
      · June 1st, 2012 at 8:32 am · Link

      I agree! I did theatre for years and would never think to react this way. I’ve had way worse said to my face, lol.



  3. MrsJoseph
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    3
    · June 1st, 2012 at 8:17 am · Link

    Stacia, I really really love you. When this crap happened, I was so sad and disgusted and disheartened. It makes me feel that I shouldn’t ever read/review…just in case I get a psycho bitch who wants to stalk me and post my personal information online. Thank you for this blog post. It really helps to remind me that there ARE sane authors in the world.



  4. Becky
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    4
    · June 1st, 2012 at 8:58 am · Link

    Fantastic post. I think you have restored my faith in humanity. ๐Ÿ˜€



  5. Lexxie
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    5
    · June 1st, 2012 at 10:11 am · Link

    This is just full of awesome! I love the analogy, and I love that you continue to stand up for other people Ms. Stacia!

    *applauds*



  6. Ciuva
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    6
    · June 1st, 2012 at 10:38 am · Link

    I think this is one of the most awesome blog posts I’ve read in a long time. Brilliantly written, and you really put it into perspective. Would be useful for quite a few people to keep on hand as a reminder, I think…



  7. VampAngel
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    7
    · June 1st, 2012 at 12:37 pm · Link

    That’s why I respect you so much, Stacia. Besides writing excellent books, you are classy and sane.

    What happened shocked me so much I think I was speechless for a whole 15 minutes, which if you know me it’s pretty impressive. I don’t understand how someone can even thin that doing something like this is right or even sane. It really boggles the mind.

    I also want to thank you for always sticking up to reviewers/readers. You are a class act!

    It’s a sad state of our society that people feel the need to throw tantrums if someone doesn’t rave about their work. And it’s always funny to me how the authors who behave badly usually have the weaker books. I have yet to read a good book written by someone insane. My favorite authors, who I respect as artists and human beings, like you, Ilona Andrews and Jeaniene Frost, are the most classy and humble. They/You respect their readers and let them come to their own conclusions about their work. As it should be. They show appreciation not only to their fans but to every reader. That respect ends up being mutual, whether the reader like their book or not. I would be hard pressed to find a disrespectful review of any of your books or theirs. I know I can find negative reviews, but they are always respectful and well thought out. One of the truths in life is that respect is a two way street. If you don’t show respect for people and their opinions nobody will respect you back. It’s just that simple.



  8. Jenn Watts
    Comment
    8
    · June 1st, 2012 at 12:43 pm · Link

    Hee! May I just say I love how you came to that point :mrgreen: Completely agree with you. If a writer can’t take someone not liking their stuff, then maybe they shouldn’t put it out there.



  9. Richard
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    9
    · June 1st, 2012 at 1:01 pm · Link

    YOU ROCK! I totally love everything you said.



  10. Rollanda
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    10
    · June 1st, 2012 at 1:12 pm · Link

    Stacia,

    Some of the bad reviews go way beyond “you didn’t like my book.” It’s one thing not to like a book. It’s another for thirty insane trolls to get angry because an author said something they didn’t like, then spend days going after that author’s book, all for the sake of leaving it a bad review. Even if they liked the book they would never admit it because it’s a mob mentality at that point.

    The good thing about it is that when these attacks happen it usually draws attention to the books and makes a lot more money for the author. :)



    • MrsJoseph
      Comment
      10.1
      · June 1st, 2012 at 2:34 pm · Link

      Strangely enough, the crazy psycho who posted the reviewer’s information has never been reviewed by that reviewer. Or almost any reviewer. So…it’s just a psycho doing what psychos do. I can see nothing positive about that.



    • Kara @ Great Imaginations
      Comment
      10.2
      · June 1st, 2012 at 4:22 pm · Link

      There is no justifying what this author did. NONE. I am not a paid reviewer, so I can write my reviews however I fucking please. If I ever get stalked for it (which is what this author is doing), I’m going straight to the fucking police. I WILL press charges. There are a FEW reviews that maybe go farther than they should, but again, that does not excuse bad author behavior. The people that I believe you are referring to are my friends. They are not trolls or bullies or anything of the sort. If you can’t handle bad reviews, stay off the sites that post them. Period. Shelving a book on Goodreads a certain way is not going AFTER the author. They are my personal shelves and MY business. This author is delusional. She is mentally unstable. Justifying ANY of her recent behavior is SICKENING.



    • Ceilidh
      Comment
      10.3
      · June 1st, 2012 at 6:19 pm · Link

      Hi there, obvious anon. How are you?

      Um, no. There’s no excuse for this invasion of privacy and outright petty bullying of a blogger.



    • Stace
      Comment
      10.4
      · June 1st, 2012 at 6:58 pm · Link

      Oh, “Rollanda,” really? :roll:



    • Claire
      Comment
      10.5
      · June 2nd, 2012 at 11:01 am · Link

      @Rollanda

      It really doesn’t you know.

      Despite what you might believe, there IS such a thing as bad publicity, and an author behaving like a butt-hurt diva in public because someone voiced an opinion that they disagreed with… well, while that might get the author some ‘respect’ among their cronies, it’s not going to earn them any kudos among their readers, critics, reviewers and potential readers.

      It’s just going to make them look like a jerk.

      Think about it.



  11. Archer
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    11
    · June 1st, 2012 at 6:14 pm · Link

    Stacia…

    You rock.



  12. Shoshana
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    12
    · June 1st, 2012 at 7:22 pm · Link

    I’ve been watching this, and been disgusted by the whole fiasco.

    The fact that you point out that this is stalking is awesome. Because it is, it’s abusive, and I would also call the police, as another commenter said they would.

    This whole blog entry hits a little close to home. Not quite the parallel to a situation my sister had to deal with, but close enough that I realize why I was having such a strong reaction to the blogger to whom you refer and that I was also distancing myself, and not calling it stalking.

    And I continue to love your blog.



  13. Bernardo
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    13
    · June 1st, 2012 at 8:49 pm · Link

    You , ma’am, get ALL the possible awards for this. I can’t even fathom your level of awesomeness and now excuse me as I go to amazon and order all your books.



  14. Tina R.
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    14
    · June 1st, 2012 at 11:09 pm · Link

    Loved that analogy! I haven’t been following the “situation” but loved the blog entry anyway. ๐Ÿ˜›



  15. Taneika
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    15
    · June 1st, 2012 at 11:55 pm · Link

    You’re my hero! You summed up my feelings about this entire shitstorm perfectly!



  16. Lucy
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    16
    · June 2nd, 2012 at 4:36 am · Link

    I’m grateful to Ms. Kane for posting this. What that woman did is giving a bad name to authors, particularly self-published ones trying to break through.

    I’ve dealt with this woman in the past, although I have not read, reviewed, or rated her book. I simply shelfed it in a way that indicated I would not be reading it and she has stalked and harassed me for it. She has stalked and harassed me for reviews I’ve written totally unrelated to her or her book. I avoid her, I ignore her, and she is still aggressively tracking me and anyone I interact with. I’ve GREATLY reduced my use sites I used to enjoy and have read less than half the books I read last year as a result. I believe if given the opportunity or the ability to create the opportunity she’d physically harm me and several other book reviewers who have NEVER READ HER BOOK.



  17. JennyJen
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    17
    · June 2nd, 2012 at 7:43 am · Link

    You’re already at the top of my list of favorite authors, but the more I read your blogs, the more I admire you. That unhinged author needs an intervention. Stat.



  18. Seeley deBorn
    Comment
    18
    · June 2nd, 2012 at 10:40 am · Link

    You know, now that I’m somewhat removed from the author “scene” these things are even more entertaining. I have no clue what this is about but it’s fucking hilarious.

    I’ve often wondered if the whole “this book is my baybee” bullshit is the reason behind it. I really don’t think these people would react the same way if someone critiqued their work at their day jobs.



  19. Miss Bliss
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    19
    · June 3rd, 2012 at 10:15 pm · Link

    The internet sure brings out the crazy don’t it? Blows my mind. I have to agree with the people who suggested some time spent working in the theatre. Hell every theatre critic out there is trying to outdo Dorothy Parker and Robert Benchley…so um, yeah they are not kind when they are not impressed. You deal with it or you get out. You do NOT start a campaign against the the reviewer if you EVER want to work again…even for free.



  20. Lege Artis
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    20
    · June 4th, 2012 at 1:45 pm · Link

    Great analogy. Well said, Stacia.



  21. Traci
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    21
    · June 6th, 2012 at 7:07 pm · Link

    Great post! I’m not familiar with the situation in question, but this author must not even participate in a critique group if her skin is this thin. Makes you wonder how these people handle the rest of their lives. Art invites questions and opinions, and writing is art. It’s the nature and beauty of the beast. ๐Ÿ˜‰



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