Friday, 25 May 2012

If only we ALL had critics like these.

A glass of wine in hand, reading the Guardian Newspaper on a Friday evening, Bob Marley on the sound system telling me, "don't worry about a thing, because every little thing goin to be alright.." and I come across, amongst all the Leveson Inquiry stuff into the machinations of the Murdoch empire trying and now wonderfully failing to take over the world  and all the European Financial melt down and the laughably humiliating actions of the government being forced, screaming, into a plan B whereby they will  bloody well have to inject money into the economy to kick start it, I come across the most hilarious article I have read in years. The writers and novelists amongst you beware.

Poor old Joe Simpson, a hardy individual who has faced death in both the Andes and the Himalayas and lived to write about his experiences in awe inspiring and inspirational and beautifully written English has obviously survived much. His books were chosen as books to be studied by adolescents in secondary schools and deemed as appropriate literature to be studied for GCSE exams.
Joe Simpson
Joe  Simpson
Enter the world of Twitter. Joe , for him, unfortunately has a Twitter account and many of the teenagers reading and analysing his books have accessed his twitter account.Some choice erudite and incisive comments  such as calling Joe  a  "crevasse wanker," and generally rubbishing his achievements has a elicited a response from Joe, who you may gather is not one to  sulk.

Another erudite commentator told him,"bet I  know more about how you put tension in the first chapter than you do."

"I just write the shit." came the response.. Ha!!! bloody Ha!!!

And yet another perceptive commentator wrote,

"Your book is shit and you should feel bad.Three chapters of crawling didn't inspire me to write about your book in my exam.It was rather boring really."

 The teenagers up front criticism of his books provoked this all encompassing comment.

"Goodnight... and may you all seethe in bilious acid pus."

Yes, well, lovely, quite.

But shouldn't all authors be open to frank and heartfelt analysis of their works? Honesty after all is an admirable quality.

I have attached the article in question, for your perusal and delight.

(The on-line Guardian article written by Sam Jones)

To all those ego massaging sensitive writers of Jane Austen spin offs who think they are wonderful and marvellous and are living in a TV sit com or Hollywood version of their own  lives, merely filling their time, with  nothings that will only be flushed down the toilet of time. All you are doing is  merely feeding similar bored  people with blank imaginations and nil creativity. Hopeless, hopeless. 

God, criticism is great!

Just as an after thought. Who can influence and inspire the youth of today?
Surely we can't leave that  one up to parents too?


  1. Tony, I've read a couple of Joe Simpson's books. I can't imagine what the "tweeps" might have criticised so badly that Joe was moved to tweet "Goodnight... and may you all seethe in bilious acid pus." But it's a great line! Wonder how I can work it into a conversation ... :) (PS I don't read Austen spinoffs. Some may be quite good, it's just that I have limited time and feel I need to devote my Austen reading time to a further study of the original.)

  2. My goodness, Tony. I've been in for some rough criticism, but I don't know how to respond to your criticism, except to say, I disagree. I do not see people who read my books as "similarly bored," but people who share my interest. I don't think you understand how much people want these stories to continue. Writers of re-imaginings only occupy a small space doing little harm, but for many, it provides hours of enjoyment.

    1. He was being ironic! His next sentence indicates that ("God, criticism is great!").