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30 April 2006 @ 05:38 pm
 
What a dickhead.

Also what is all this "the publishing industry has become a bunch of soulless corporate hacks who are all out to make a fast buck instead of promoting littrachure" twaddle? The publishing industry has always been a profit operation, that's why it's an industry and not a charity. Publishers publish books they think people want to buy and read, full stop. It's been this way since the invention of print. Sure, good books still get published (because people want to read them) but they're propped up by a gigantic sea of dreck *proudly aspires to published dreck status*. This is hardly new.

Witness the wild popularity of fantasy and science fiction among the very same kids who display the very same sensibility in their choice of video games.

....Because packagers never have a hand in fantasy and sci fi books? Because there's a shortage of fantasy and sci-fi for young adults? Neither of those statements is true. Tim Rutten may be a well-respected journo but I can't help a sneaking suspicion that there's a brick-sized unpublished YA manuscript in his sock drawer, covered in rejection slips. Fortunately it's the industry that's broken, not Galactivore, Book One of the Space Fantasy Opera Saga Quintet.
 
 
 
Lil: diedBossliliaevans on April 30th, 2006 10:36 pm (UTC)
I didn't know that "How Opal Mehta Got Kissed, Got Wild, and Got a Life," was taken off shelves because of plagarism. Wow. You'd think she might have had more sense than that. It is pounded into my head in college everytime I write a paper or speech about plagarizing and how bad it is, even accidental plagarisim. Sure it was her photographic memory...

Anay way...
folk: Kwesta!! Mallydetta!?folk on April 30th, 2006 10:38 pm (UTC)
Galactivore, Book One of the Space Fantasy Opera Saga Quintet

OMG YOU STOLE MY BOOK IDEA. That's copywrite! And copywritten! (Or should that be copywrote? Copywrought?) You better not have used Star Princess Kaiaejaieiallalalala of the pink and purple planet Moonbeamshinestarsparkle too, or I am so suing your tacky ass.
heidi∞: Books by Copperbadgeheidi8 on May 1st, 2006 12:31 am (UTC)
But, John, I thought yours was a seven-book quintet?
Jordan Catalano: Beautiful lipsprettyveela on April 30th, 2006 10:45 pm (UTC)
one of the major reasons other young people don't read books is that most of the stuff published for children and adolescents is abysmal, self-regarding trash.

Well alrightly then. >.>

The publishing industry has always been a profit operation, that's why it's an industry and not a charity.

Pretty much.


Still blushing, I'm not kidding.
Nobody's laughing now: R - writinglavinialavender on April 30th, 2006 11:00 pm (UTC)
So does the "dickhead" actually reference the Harvard author, or the author of that entry? Just curious.
Magpie: Fly this waysistermagpie on April 30th, 2006 11:18 pm (UTC)
LOL!

Fortunately it's the industry that's broken, not Galactivore, Book One of the Space Fantasy Opera Saga Quintet.


This is like the motto of so many people:
Astres - Kate L.: Art // NANA // WTF?astres on April 30th, 2006 11:35 pm (UTC)
Publishers publish books they think people want to buy and read, full stop. It's been this way since the invention of print. Sure, good books still get published (because people want to read them) but they're propped up by a gigantic sea of dreck *proudly aspires to published dreck status*. This is hardly new.

*rolls eyes* You think the publishing industry is about profit in Canada? Every book that is published in Canada by a non-big-house publisher drills that publisher inteo debt. Publishers need grants from the government in order to operate and bring words to the people. Just because the head companies like Little, Brown and Co. and Random House make money, doesn't mean they started with a passion that wanted to give words to the people. That's like saying everyone who puts on a play only has the sole intention of seeing it bring in money; actresses and actors, directors and writers, techies and ushers, they don't give a rats ass about the content of the play, they just want a some pennies to rub together.
Cassie Clarecassandraclare on April 30th, 2006 11:41 pm (UTC)
But the article isn't talking about small publishers, special interest publishers, academic publishers, or publishers in Canada. He's talking about the big houses, who do not get grants from the government, and who if they did not make money, would cease to exist.

Just because the head companies like Little, Brown and Co. and Random House make money, doesn't mean they started with a passion that wanted to give words to the people.

...What?
heidi∞: JustMyTypeheidi8 on April 30th, 2006 11:36 pm (UTC)
Tim is caustic - and married to my former semi-boss, Leslie Abramson. And their son is, iirc, 12 or 13 now, so maybe that's where some of his odd-perspectivizing comes from?
women's lasers: veronica mars - logan black/whitesarcasticpixie on May 1st, 2006 12:03 am (UTC)
I kind of love how you know the entire world.
heidi∞: Booze!heidi8 on May 1st, 2006 12:30 am (UTC)
It gets kind of random sometimes, but in a good way.
women's lasers: harry potter - slytherin fairy talesarcasticpixie on May 1st, 2006 01:23 am (UTC)
Nothing will ever be as random as Max Weinberg being your cousin.
Miss Cecil Castelluccicastellucci on May 1st, 2006 12:23 am (UTC)
sing it sister.
Trouble: flying nunliteraticat on May 1st, 2006 02:48 am (UTC)
HAIL GALACTIVORE!

(like C.H.U.D. in space)
Holly Blackblackholly on May 1st, 2006 03:25 am (UTC)
Burn!
justinelavaworm on May 1st, 2006 07:49 am (UTC)
Best post ever, Ms Cla(i)re! I wish I'd read it before I wrote my own long-winded rant on the same topic. It'd've saved some wear and tear on the old wristies.

You, as ever, are a goddess!
Clio, a vibrating mass of YES!: Clio Chibijlh on May 1st, 2006 11:06 am (UTC)
What a completely bizarre essay.

First, it doesn't hang together; whatever he's talking about at the beginning isn't what he was talking about at the end. He wants to project a larger trend onto this whole mess but he has an axe to grind and it doesn't all quite fit. He puts in that there were syndicates long ago but I don't buy his "argument" that they were different—they were only different because they were the ones he grew up with.

Second, as everyone is saying, that publishing is in the service of very large corporations leads to problems but they really aren't the ones that he's laying out here. You would think that the corporations would be pumping out all kinds of cynical, crappy books based on the newest video game, or at least trying to replicate the success of HP. The through line between this plagiarism case, why he thinks kids aren't reading, and fantasy v whatever isn't there at all.

Third, is "kids don't read" really something that happened last week?

In the end I think his actual crazy point is made when he starts talking about the newspaper industry. They're the ones in crisis, and they're in crisis because they don't make money. I could go on and on about why this is so, but it has a lot less to do with the consolodation of the industry itself and a lot more to do with the rise of the chain, leading to fewer local retail advertisers (the bread and butter of a newspaper) and more national advertisers who can just be in a magazine for cheaper.

So he's a lot less concerned about what kids read, a concept that is shoehorned into this essay anyway, and a lot more concerned about the future of the newspaper, which he can't write about because no one cares. Poorly constructed argument not to mention that kind of presentism that defeats your purpose.

So I'd say, what a moron.
heidi∞: Books by Copperbadgeheidi8 on May 2nd, 2006 12:02 pm (UTC)
: looks at Joule

Oh, you sneaky, sneaky girl. Pahaha!
Jordan Catalano: :Dprettyveela on May 3rd, 2006 04:07 pm (UTC)
Dude you too? I was like "who is this new person on my flist?" haaaa