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Apparently acrackedmoon (of Requires Only That You Hate fame), formerly "winterfox," has been outed.

I can't say I've ever heard of her (the real name who is apparently an up-and-coming author), but I'll probably check out one of her stories.

I think outing people who are trying to remain pseudonymous is generally a pretty shitty thing to do. I am quite aware that I'm not really anonymous - someone who really wants to know my real identity can figure it out. If someone posted to Twitter: "Hahahaha! Inverarity is really Stephen King*!" I would be annoyed, but I would not freak out about it. I would consider that person to be an asshole, though.

Right now, no one cares who I am, and the number of people who dislike me enough that they'd find it amusing to post my real name just because it would annoy me is small enough that I don't really care. If I ever actually get published, I expect at that point it would be a matter of time before I got "outed," if I didn't out myself.

So, I think the people involved in outing acrackedmoon (exactly who these people are seems to be debatable, as there are those who have apparently known for a while, those who've been dropping hints and threatening to out her, and then the one(s) who actually first publicly posted her real name) are kind of dicks. I've read various justifications from "It was coming out anyway and this put an end to the drama" to "Bwahahaha, karma's a bitch!" And I still think that absent some reason more compelling than "She deserved it," it's wrong to post someone's real name if they don't want their real name posted.

That said, apparently this up-and-coming author also adopted a sweet, friendly, and mild persona when interacting with the very people she was shredding on her ROTYH blog. And the point at which she stopped blogging and tweeting coincided with the point at which she started getting published. So I find that profoundly disingenuous and cowardly. If you're gonna say it, own it, and if you're gonna say it anonymously, be prepared to own it when you inevitably get outed.

I've generally tried to be pretty much myself and not say things I'll regret here. Supposing that I became famous (for some small value of "fame"), I'm sure someone could scour all my LJ posts and find something objectionable I've written. But the reason I don't worry too much about being outed (besides the fact that I'm a nobody) is that I'm fairly confident that the worst thing that would come of it would be some mild embarrassment. ("Oh, he's that guy?")

So anyway, be yourself and own your words. acrackedmoon is no angel, and she went out of her way to antagonize some of the people who are now celebrating her little moment of notoriety. But what I find most objectionable is the fact that she wasn't prepared to face down her critics when this day came and say, "Yeah, that was me, and yeah, I said those things."

In the long run, though, I doubt this will really hurt her. If she goes on to become a Big Name Author, she will always have her remora-like enemies hanging around reminding everyone that she used to be winterfox and that she once said she wanted to punch Paolo Bacigalupi in the face and that U.S. soldiers are all mass murderers, but editors and publishers really don't care about this kind of thing. If Orson Scott Card, Marion Zimmer Bradley**, and Harlan Ellison haven't lost any sales, a writer once known for incendiary reviews and vitriolic tweets will be able to live this down just fine.

* I am not really Stephen King

** Yes, she's dead. She probably still outsells most living authors.

Wow, fandom, you really didn't know?

It's kind of amazing to me that SF/F fandom is going through paroxysms of outrage and disgust and shock right now over the "revelations" about Marion Zimmer Bradley.

(tl;dr version if you've somehow missed it: MZB's ex-husband was a convicted child molester, whom she aided and abetted, and her own daughter says MZB molested her too. And apparently all of fandom back in the day knew that MZB's then-husband, Walter Breen, was a jolly fellow fan whom you just shouldn't leave alone with kids...)

The thing is, this has been public knowledge for years. I first read this many years ago. With the way fandom nowadays hunts down every stray tweet and tumblr that someone might have posted in an ill-advised moment, it's kind of odd that somehow this is only becoming a Big Deal now.

I read The Mists of Avalon in high school and remember it being an okay retelling of the Arthurian legend, but OMG so men-are-slavering-beasts-women-are-the-sacred-uterus-of-the-universe. I don't think I've ever read anything else by her.

So anyway, yeah, MZB was apparently an exceedingly creepy and horrible person, but like I said, until now I thought that was common knowledge.

And yeah, every single person back in the day who thought it would be too "mean" to exclude a known child molester from conventions because "Geek Unity!" deserves the beating they should have given Walter Breen.
As someone who never really cared who Harry or Hermione ended up with, all I can say is: Bwahahahahaha!!!!

"I know, I'm sorry, I can hear the rage and fury it might cause some fans, but if I'm absolutely honest, distance has given me perspective on that,” she said.

Actually, I think this is pretty awesome. Rowling is still thinking about her stories and her characters and able to revisit her writing decisions with a critical eye years after the fact. I've talked a little bit about how some of the things I've done in my stories I might have done differently if I had them to do over again, and it's great that someone as notable as Rowling can say "Yeah, in retrospect maybe I should have written that differently." Especially knowing, as I'm sure she does, that Ron/Hermione/Harry shipping was one of the most controversial and hugely absorbing issues in the fandom for many years and that saying this now will probably create more reaction than when she announced Dumbledore was gay.

I expect some people will accuse her of just trying to get attention again now that HP is fading from memory, which is pretty much what they said when she dropped the infamous Dumbledore bombshell. I don't get these accusations. JK Rowling has never struck me as a woman who's desperately in need of being in the spotlight or who courts controversy for the sake of controversy. She sometimes makes bad decisions and she admits it, but she seems quite down to earth and I think she just says whatever comes to her mind, even if it causes an uproar among her fans.

Anyway, this should be amusing to watch in those corners of the fandom still deeply invested in shipping and JK Rowling's after-the-fact pronouncements. Break out the popcorn!

Truly, I do not understand review wank

I get that people want reviews. I want reviews. I include a polite request that people leave reviews for my stories because yes, I like to know people read it and enjoyed it. But I also realized long ago that only a small percentage of your readers will comment on it at all. There are people who will faithfully follow your stories for years, and never leave a single review or comment.

And that's okay! Maybe it's because they're shy. Maybe because they always read on a phone that's inconvenient for posting. Maybe they just don't like leaving comments. I know there are people who read this LJ regularly who have never commented (waves), and of course there are people who "follow" or "favorite" you on without ever leaving a review. That's okay too.

I can understand an author who really needs a bit of ego-boosting being sad that people follow their story but never comment. But I do not understand the rage some authors display at not getting reviews, not getting enough reviews, getting reviews that don't meet their standards (too short/too vague/too critical/mentioned a ship the author doesn't like/etc.), or (I am not kidding) getting angry that someone "followed" a completed story. I mean, yeah, it's pointless to sign up for updates for a story that is finished, but probably the person didn't notice, or they just automatically "follow" all stories they like just in case the author does post another chapter. It's not like it has any negative impact on the author.

So anyway, the latest fandom_wank entry is yet another fanfic author having a meltdown because people aren't reviewing the way she wants. But the real gem is one of the linked comment threads, in which a former fanfic author and now supposedly a best-selling pro author goes off on how fanfic writing is a "mug's game" because readers are so entitled, they want free stuff, don't they know you are a human being, and maybe writing is how you support yourself? (Uh, then you need to not be writing fan fiction...)

Evidently, because I am not particularly bothered by people who read my stories without commenting, I am just like someone in an abusive relationship who doesn't have enough self esteem to leave.

Wow. How about writing because you fucking enjoy writing? I mean, I might whine and moan about wanting to be published, but ultimately, this is something I do for fun. If you really want to make a living as a writer, you need to go about it seriously and professionally. Otherwise, you need to get over your special snowflake self and make peace with the fact that fandom is what it is, and if you are posting free fiction, you should be content with only a few of your readers leaving reviews, and if you get a small core of regular fans (I love you guys!), that's gonna have to do you as far as ego-stroking goes.

I am more and more convinced that the growing incidence of professional authors having meltdowns over bad reviews is because we're seeing more writers coming out of fandom and going pro... without also making the transition from emotional adolescence to adulthood.

A Fan Fiction and Fanwank Review

The first half of this post is a brief review of a fan fiction story you may enjoy. The second half is wanky stuff for those who have an unhealthy fondness for watching Internet trainwrecks and implosions in fandom. If that offends you, skip everything after the cut.

Some time ago, I read Dumbledore's Army and the Year of Darkness. If you've been hanging around HP fan fiction communities at all (anywhere except MNFF, which by the way I think should stop trying to pretend they're the only site where HP fan fiction exists, since I really don't think your Mugglenet overlords are paying attention anymore anyway), you've probably heard of it. It's written by thanfiction, who has accomplished the fairly remarkable feat of becoming a BNF in HP fandom after the end of the series and the fandom has begun declining. thanfiction has written a bunch of prequels and sequels and vignettes now, and the "DAYDverse" apparently has spawned LJ communities and fan fiction of its own. Pretty impressive.

DAATYOD tells the tale of Neville and the D.A. during their seventh year. It's the story about what was going on back at Hogwarts under Snape and the Carrows, while the Trio was on their camping trip.

I found it to be pretty good. thanfiction is a good writer, and the story was riveting at times, though occasionally too self-indulgent with the blood and angst and horror. It was definitely not written in the same tone as Rowling -- Snape and the Carrows do truly horrific things to the students, which are gruesomely described -- which really shows when Harry finally comes back for the final battle.

But, there's a reason why whenever someone asks for fan fiction about Neville and the D.A., this is the one that almost always gets recommended.

I stopped reading the sequel, Sluagh, about halfway through, because I thought the story was beginning to bear no resemblance whatsoever to Rowling's world. Nothing wrong with that, per se, but while I think thanfiction is a good writer, he's not so good that I'm interested in his original fiction. Also, he seemed to be trying to escalate the level of blood and grit from DAATYOD, until Sluagh became almost carnographic at times.


The rest of this is all fandom wanky stuffCollapse )

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