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Merle

Merle

Book reviewing is not fucking safe

Forget about that fucking small-time stalker, you guys, and read this. The short of it is, unbalanced self-published author travelled several hours to hit a reviewer over the head with a full wine bottle while she was at work (in retail, apparently). She never saw it coming. She was hospitalized and received several stitches.

 

Fuck it, you guys, what do we even do? How can we as a book-loving community possibly respond to something like this? I can't even begin to answer that question other than, you know, cursing a lot.

 

But here is what we all need to do: think about a safety plan. And let's be real: it starts with whose books you read and review. Self-pubbed authors are more dangerous than trad-pubbed. Pre-release and brand-new books are more dangerous than books that have been out awhile. Being the first critical review is more dangerous than coming in once several people have already criticized the book. Living authors are a hell of a lot more dangerous than dead ones. If you do read live ones, authors who live within driving distance of you are more dangerous than authors on another continent.

 

Yes, I fucking went there. Especially on that self-published shit. Any potential willingness I had to potentially read a self-pubbed author someday just went out the fucking window.

 

And next, you guys, please think about how easy your real identity is to connect to your screen name. In my case, I'm pretty sure the answer is "pretty damn easy." Sometimes I even use my real name. I've done it for years and prefer it that way; it's a point of pride. I'm also well aware of how easy I am to track down through it, and this is making me rethink that decision like nothing else has.

 

Also, you know, be aware of your surroundings, lock your doors and all that jazz. I have less to say about this because I don't see what else the reviewer could have done. Other than not reading a fucking self-published moron and not writing an honest review of his shit - and I'm afraid too many people will respond by no longer doing the latter, and we'll all be the poorer for it. Fuck that guy, and fuck anyone who supports him. I hope he goes to prison for years but I think we all know that won't be enough to repair the damage a crime like this does to the reviewing community. Fuck fuck fuck.