Tuesday, October 4, 2011

The Write Agenda : Soliciting donations to burn books

Writer Beware is a watchdog group which collects information on the publishing industry and on literary scams. Its founders, Ann C. Crispin and Victoria Strauss, are multi-published authors as well as being honest and helpful to other writers - and I'm speaking from experience there.

So of course the scammers try to discredit what they say. Normally such bad-mouthing is best ignored, but when I read Writer Beware's latest blog post, a follow-up seemed called for.

Because there's a hate group calling itself "The Write Agenda", and it's called for a boycott of books from anyone who criticizes it. Or criticizes scams, in general. Perhaps that's why I'm on the list too. At least I'm in good company.

I'm not sure what this list is supposed to achieve. Maybe if "The Write Agenda" was a huge group of librarians, booksellers, etc. it would have some effect, but right now it's an anonymous person or persons who can't seem to do more than conduct a half-assed smear campaign. Despite its many claims, websites and sockpuppets, "The Write Agenda" doesn't seem to attract much support (its Facebook page, for instance, has 32 likes).

Anyway, if I were that easily intimidated I would never have left the Middle East.

Not that that's all, though. According to another writer, "The Write Agenda" posted one-star reviews of its critics' books on Goodreads, though these have now been removed. And "The Write Agenda" also wants to burn its critics' books, so they're soliciting donations.

Sadly, they don't have a Photoshopped picture of a collection bin with my name on it, but maybe they'll buy a few copies of Before the Storm anyway. If anyone's doing a Fahrenheit 451 on the books of people who tell the truth about scams, I don't want to be left out. And if money's tight, "The Write Agenda" can always get e-copies.


Anonymous said...

That is an impressive amount of stupidity. *blink*blink*

Though your last line does beg the question: Is there a way to 'burn' ebooks?

My brain's first thought is download, add virus to file, set up as free download somewhere and let people get it.

Sean T Poindexter said...

Great post! Mirrors my feelings on this quite well.

Randall said...

Weirdly, the Write Agenda is following me on Twitter. I think that, since I got my account, I have made about 3 tweets; mostly I use it to follow people I'm interested in -- oh, that's why. I just looked at who I'm following: Victoria Strauss, Teresa Nielsen-Hayden, Cat Valente, you. Clearly, if not a suspect myself, I am a person of interest.

Marian Perera said...

dldzioba : Someone posted a link to a cartoon about the literal burning of ebooks - here it is.


And yeah, that site is long on malice and short on brain.

Sean : Thanks! I checked out your post as well, and am adding a link.

Say Something Mean Really Loudly

Randall : Tweet Yog's Law ("Money flows towards the writer") and they'll probably follow you on your own account. :)

Maria Zannini said...

I have a hard time giving credibility to anyone who hides behind anonymity.

Marian Perera said...

To be fair, there have been some honest and informative people in the industry who used pseudonyms. I'm thinking Miss Snark, specifically, but there are others.

On the other hand, if you (generic you) are going after people personally, then yes - hiding behind anonymity is unimpressive to say the least.

P.N. "Pat" Elrod said...

I think all the boycotted writers should "Like" TWA's FB page! It's clear that TWA is desperate, sad and lonely and needs more friends! Who better than all the people it's trying to smear. Let's show 'em how generous and forgiving we are.

(Mockage is the best way to deal with this sort of nonsense.)

It's an honor to be on that list with you! :)

Marian Perera said...

The honor's all mine! Seriously. Given that I'm just starting out, to be listed alongside multi-published authors like yourself, James, Ann and Victoria brought a lump to my throat. :)

Karen Packard Rhodes said...

I just tweeted Yog's Law. Let them come after me. I'll laugh them out of the galaxy. What a bunch of fools.

But . . . fools can be dangerous. Anyone who would propose burning books can be very dangerous.