So, being the social media wonder that I am, (inject a great deal of sarcasm) I joined a group on FB for writers, wait no, for “authors,” and let me just say, the distinction is one worth making, because no sooner did I join than I found out just how damn serious some people are.
It’s supposed to be a supportive kind of group, people of like minds sharing thoughts and strategies, wisdom and aid, all good, fine things to share, but no sooner did I join than I realized some people just take themselves too damn seriously. One author claiming he never uses slang or profanity in his work, he simply can’t, unless of course he has to, but even then it pains him. Someone said profanity could only serve to move a story downhill; another declared profanity is insulting, and lazy. (I shudder to think what they would think of my novel ‘The Wrong Daughter,’ a book filled with profanity, not for shock value, but because the characters are people who naturally use profanity. I happen to think in some stories profanity is needed because it is authentic to the story. (A lot of people use profanity, really, they do, hence the three-second-delay button.) Then there were those touting their degrees, their superior education, listing their academic accomplishments, and I had to wonder, why? I honestly couldn’t care less about an author’s education when it comes time to read a novel, all I care about is reading a story well told.
I read through a few posts, and I was struck by the attempt by some people to impress upon anyone reading their unlimited knowledge and superiority. Certain people seemed to want noting more than to show their vast knowledge. When I responded to a post about word misusage, with a rather silly, funny little rambling of words, involving “they’re,” “their,” “your” and “you’re,” several people met it with such grave seriousness. To be fair, there were just as many who understood my intention and ‘liked’ it, but I was so surprised at the number of people who missed the point. The comments left were so serious and accusatory and, well, unnecessary when in reality it was nothing more than a silly play on words…
Then there was the author who scolded me for apologizing for the piece, told me not to look to be liked. I don’t look to be liked, I think much of what I write is proof of that, but I don’t like to have my intent appear unclear, even when it’s my intent to be ambiguous, I want it clear, and obviously I wasn’t clear, or I wouldn’t have received the comments I did.
It is exciting to be a part of a community of like minds, people who share the same passion. Perhaps my little play on words was hard to understand and be seen for the funny little piece it was meant to be.