Author Topic: Yet another reason the internet leaves a bad taste in my mouth...  (Read 51334 times)

DFL

  • Guest
Re: Yet another reason the internet leaves a bad taste in my mouth...
« Reply #45 on: September 29, 2009, 12:42:37 pm »
I have now added this as a footnote (in the form of a blog comment to my own review):

"In answer to Mark Samuels (BFS member) and Johnny Mains (non-BFS Member) - who have gone out of their way to express their conviction that this book is an unworthy winner of the BFS Award for best collection - I would say that that is a moot point. I hope I have shown above that, although BULL RUNNING is imperfect (as I point out in various places in the review), the aftertaste and its resonating emotion outweigh the imperfections, given a proper study of the book. That is not to say that the other contenders for the prize (which, other than the King, I have also done real-time reviews for in the past) are not worthy winners, too. It's just that it's feasible that ALL of them are worthy winners and it was the voting that decided in the end, as it should."

Offline CarolineC

  • Elder Darkness
  • *****
  • Posts: 1040
    • View Profile
Re: Yet another reason the internet leaves a bad taste in my mouth...
« Reply #46 on: September 29, 2009, 12:52:38 pm »
Oh dear, this is all rather sad. At a time when Ally, and the rest of the BFS award winners, should be celebrating their successes, this has cast a shadow over everything. I'm not sure what to say, but just a few points from an "outsider" perspective:

1. If Ally has been seen as "aggressively marketing" her book, I'm not sure that's something she should be admonished for. Bear in mind that, at the time, her publisher was seriously ill. Ally therefore took it on herself to market the book. Good for her - that shows initiative, concern for her publisher to do the best by him, and concern for the genre and the small presses generally in that she wanted the book to succeed (as well as, of course, wanting it to succeed from her point of view, as the writer). In my opinion, writing a book isn't just about the art. If you want people to read it, it has to be marketed (BTW I teach management - including marketing - so I guess I come from that perspective anyway).

2. I feel Mark and Johnny have now made their points clear, and - to me - that's fair enough. They have every right to their opinions, the same as anyone else. Unfortunately, to start with, these points were misunderstood by people reading them. For example, I thought Johnny's initial post was simply a carry over from last year's rumpus in the Vault, but, after having a little PMed conversation with him via the Vault, I've realised that isn't the case. He has read the book, has informed opinions on it, and that's fair enough. Sorry for my mistake there, Johnny.

Mark has also made his position clear about the award and the book - again, fair enough as he's entitled to hold those opinions too.

The issue, as I see it, with the BFS awards is that they are voted on by members rather than a panel of "experts". But I'm aware of some of the public discussion which went on around this matter - basically, there are problems if you do it that way, and there are also problems if you do it the other way. The BFS have chosen to let members vote - again, fair enough as far as I'm concerned.

3. But in amongst everything, let's not forget that Ally has been upset by all this, and that's perhaps the saddest part of it all. I really hope that everyone can move on, and Ally can be left to feel that she really HAS achieved a tremendous feat in winning this award with her first collection (I read somewhere that only Joe Hill has previously done this?). By the way, I've not read the book so I can't comment at all on its relative merits or otherwise. I did hear Ally read "The Caul Bearer" at an event, where I thought it sat well alongside stories read by Ramsey Campbell, Peter Crowther, Mark Morris and others.

And now I hope I haven't made things any worse by any of my comments - I'm trying to help cool things down, but I don't know if I've helped at all ...  :-\
« Last Edit: September 29, 2009, 12:56:47 pm by CarolineC »
Please 'like' Frightful Horrors on Facebook
www.facebook.com/frightfulhorrorsuk

Offline CarolineC

  • Elder Darkness
  • *****
  • Posts: 1040
    • View Profile
Re: Yet another reason the internet leaves a bad taste in my mouth...
« Reply #47 on: September 29, 2009, 12:54:44 pm »
And sorry, Des, I was posting at the same time as you - so my "oh dear, this is rather sad" definitely isn't aimed at your posts but the situation overall! You've been a tremendous voice of reason in all this.  :)
Please 'like' Frightful Horrors on Facebook
www.facebook.com/frightfulhorrorsuk

DFL

  • Guest
Re: Yet another reason the internet leaves a bad taste in my mouth...
« Reply #48 on: September 29, 2009, 01:02:24 pm »
Thanks for that, Caroline, and, in my opinion, for your very helpful post (as you seem to be doubt how helpful it may be). :)

Offline Rolnikov

  • TQF co-editor
  • BFS Reviewers
  • Elder Darkness
  • *****
  • Posts: 3024
    • View Profile
    • Theaker's Quarterly Fiction
Re: Yet another reason the internet leaves a bad taste in my mouth...
« Reply #49 on: September 29, 2009, 01:24:18 pm »
Mark has also made his position clear about the award and the book - again, fair enough as he's entitled to hold those opinions too.

Absolutely true. Just as other people are entitled to think he's a jerk for expressing them at that time and in that way.

Basically, he did a Kanye.

DFL

  • Guest
Re: Yet another reason the internet leaves a bad taste in my mouth...
« Reply #50 on: September 29, 2009, 01:39:20 pm »
What's 'kanye'?

I don't like the expression 'jerk'.  But, there you go.  Mark may have stirred a lot of emotions, but Mark's still Mark.

Quote from my real-time review of BULL RUNNING:

Blood in Madness Ran
That madness again.  Here, for me, all comes together, in a glorious Vancean fantasy masterpiece of Legends of the sea and of history and of mythology, underpinned as it is by many of the previous stories (including ‘The Caul Bearer’, ‘The Sly Boy Bar and Eatery’, ‘In a Pig’s Ear’ &c.) and by Gulliver’s Travels...  This should win awards. Enough said. Worth the admission price alone. [Without going back in time, it is impossible for me to tell whether this story-in-itself would seem quite so great without the previous parts of this book permeating its bull-runs or surfing-tides, with the book’s earlier tutoring of me to easily absorb mixed protagonists and changing narrative points-of-view, its fast moving jumped-started conclusions of disbelief-neutralisation, its Legends mixed like absinthe ... and more.
“Small sly faces with eyes the colour of green ice laughed back at her as she offered her breast to each in turn.(5 July 09 - two hours later)

Offline Screaming Dreams

  • Thaumaturge
  • ***
  • Posts: 168
    • View Profile
    • Screaming Dreams
Re: Yet another reason the internet leaves a bad taste in my mouth...
« Reply #51 on: September 29, 2009, 01:54:16 pm »
Hi all,

Thought I'd better step in and just explain something regarding the promotion aspect of the Bull Running book that seems to keep cropping up..

Many of you may already be aware of the situation with my health last year, but for the benefit of those who are not then I think it's worth pointing out WHY Ally was put in the position of promoting the book in the first place. Just before Bull Running for Girls was due at the printers I was rushed into hospital with Heart Failure. I was stuck in intensive care and various cardiac wards for weeks and therefore was not able to do anything with Screaming Dreams during that time.

Allyson was kind enough to step in at that point and offered to take over at Screaming Dreams while I was out of action. I had to relay instructions as best I could from my hospital bed! So you can imagine what extra pressures and responsibility she had to deal with unexpectedly. That was a lot to ask of any author I know, so I will be forever grateful to Ally for all the help and support during that very difficult time in my life. The Bull Running book would never have been launched on schedule at FantasyCon 2008 without all her hard work and dedication.

So I do feel it unfair that Ally has come under such fire for all her hard work promoting the book. She was a new author with a debut collection coming out, so it's natural that she wanted to make people aware that the book was available. Nothing wrong with that. Actually I applaud all her efforts. If only all my authors were so keen to participate more with their books! Add to that the extra responsibility of running Screaming Dreams while I was in hospital and the learning curve for her with that side of things and I think she did remarkably well under the circumstances. So I just think it's a bit sad that some people can't appreciate all she has done.

Anyway, I just wanted to explain a little of the background here to enlighten people that it wasn't simply a case of an author and/or publisher just going out there and plugging a book just to win an award. That was the last thing on our minds when we released the book I assure you! The book sold out all 50+ copies at the FCon launch in 2008 and the entire first print run sold out within weeks. So there was obviously demand for the book and we received lots of very nice comments from readers. So if enough people liked the book and voted in the awards, then great, I'm thrilled. But I most certainly did not pursue an award and would never go chasing votes and the like. Just wanted to set the record straight on that point.

I don't usually step in and reply to such things in the forums, but wanted to shed some extra light on this particular situation. I hope you don't mind?

Steve


Offline Matthew Fryer

  • Initiate
  • *
  • Posts: 39
    • View Profile
    • Matthew Fryer - The Hellforge
Re: Yet another reason the internet leaves a bad taste in my mouth...
« Reply #52 on: September 29, 2009, 02:00:55 pm »
I'm new here, and I don't know what's gone on in the past or with the vault.
Seems like a mix of politics, personalities and horses for courses, perhaps with a little misunderstanding thrown in.
Emotions are running high, but it seems sad that Ally has come under fire and the award has taken her from high to low.

But anyway, I really enjoyed BRFG, and reviewed it positively only a week or so before the awards...
http://matthewfryer.wordpress.com/
All the best with future publications Ally, of which I will be reading.

Oh, and did I need to do one of those newbie message board introductions?
If so, hello folks.
My name's Matt and I like barbecue beef hula hoops.
Sorted.  ;D

Offline Rolnikov

  • TQF co-editor
  • BFS Reviewers
  • Elder Darkness
  • *****
  • Posts: 3024
    • View Profile
    • Theaker's Quarterly Fiction
Re: Yet another reason the internet leaves a bad taste in my mouth...
« Reply #53 on: September 29, 2009, 04:10:33 pm »
What's 'kanye'?

Kanye West got up on stage when a girl was accepting an MTV award to say she didn't deserve it, leaving her in tears, and leading President Obama to call him a jackass.

Did Taylor Swift's video deserve to win over Beyonce's? Probably not. Are the MTV awards completely corrupt? Probably. But did any of that justify ruining the best moment of that girl's life? No.

I seem to be getting angrier about this the more I think about it.  :)

Offline Peter Coleborn

  • Publisher, The Alchemy Press
  • Elder Darkness
  • *****
  • Posts: 1656
    • View Profile
    • Peter Coleborn / Alchemy Press
Re: Yet another reason the internet leaves a bad taste in my mouth...
« Reply #54 on: September 29, 2009, 04:55:30 pm »
Who's Kanye West? Honestly, I have no idea.

Offline Paul Campbell

  • BFS Reviewers
  • Thaumaturge
  • *****
  • Posts: 287
    • View Profile
Re: Yet another reason the internet leaves a bad taste in my mouth...
« Reply #55 on: September 29, 2009, 04:58:32 pm »
Oh, this is sweet (read BOTH posts):

http://horrorworldwatch.blogspot.com/

Elsewhere on the internet someone demands that "he or she should have the courage of their convictions and provide their real name".

Oh, I think we know who this is, don't we? Remember a number of years back when a BFS forum member was banned for their vicious and continuous comments about Ramsey Campbell?

This snippet gives the blogger's ID away:

Quote
The BFS prefers to favour horror over fantasy and to belittle the mainstream achievements of hugely commercial writers because they aren't as widely read as the under-achieving life-time President [...] And the two biggest catfish in the BFS pool are Ramsey "Mr Blobby" Campbell and Stephen "Delboy" Jones, who between them own enough BFS gold to keep Mr T in bling for his entire career.

Offline Rolnikov

  • TQF co-editor
  • BFS Reviewers
  • Elder Darkness
  • *****
  • Posts: 3024
    • View Profile
    • Theaker's Quarterly Fiction
Re: Yet another reason the internet leaves a bad taste in my mouth...
« Reply #56 on: September 29, 2009, 05:16:44 pm »
Who's Kanye West? Honestly, I have no idea.

He's a very successful hip hop producer who began recording albums in his own name a few years ago. Some of his stuff is very interesting and experimental (many of his videos are extremely imaginative).

Here's a bit about the time he spoiled the big moment of Justice:

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=QTJxj7a9-DA

And here's a bit about him breaking Taylor Swift's heart:

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=1z8gCZ7zpsQ

Offline CarolineC

  • Elder Darkness
  • *****
  • Posts: 1040
    • View Profile
Re: Yet another reason the internet leaves a bad taste in my mouth...
« Reply #57 on: September 29, 2009, 06:21:00 pm »
Elsewhere on the internet someone demands that "he or she should have the courage of their convictions and provide their real name".

That "someone" is me, by the way, on the RCMB. But I didn't actually demand it Paul, I just suggested that maybe they should. Anyway, since then I've realised that that blog is probably a spoof, not intended to be taken seriously. But it's a very sick "joke" (for want of a better word) nevertheless.

And I was wondering who on earth Kayne West was too!  :D
Please 'like' Frightful Horrors on Facebook
www.facebook.com/frightfulhorrorsuk

DFL

  • Guest
Re: Yet another reason the internet leaves a bad taste in my mouth...
« Reply #58 on: September 29, 2009, 06:28:21 pm »
The Horrorwatch blog has taken its comment boxes down now - since I complained to Horrorwatch himself on the VoE site that my comment wasn't shown.

I also said to him that the blog seemed designed to make everyone feel more uncomfortable in this argument (ie. everyone on all sides of the argument, in fact) and to raise the temperature of debate for its own sake.

Offline Rolnikov

  • TQF co-editor
  • BFS Reviewers
  • Elder Darkness
  • *****
  • Posts: 3024
    • View Profile
    • Theaker's Quarterly Fiction
Re: Yet another reason the internet leaves a bad taste in my mouth...
« Reply #59 on: September 29, 2009, 06:47:32 pm »
And I was wondering who on earth Kayne West was too!  :D

"George Bush doesn't care about black people!"

His mum dying after plastic surgery?

Being sued by Evel Knievel?

Nothing...? Don't you guys read the papers?  :D