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Sunday, December 15, 2013

Swirskyella: a review

Dave Truesdale reviews Apex Magazine and is absolutely appalled by the sight of a feminist authoress releasing her rancid, overstuffed bowels all over a classic fairytale:
Rachel Swirsky’s “All That Fairy Tale Crap” gives us another female author who is, let’s say...severely disgruntled at stuff she cannot change in the real world. Her focus here is the “ideal” female as portrayed in fairy tales who make it impossible for the contemporary woman to live up to such high standards—the fairy tale of Cinderella being the chosen target here and which seems to be the one getting the author’s panties in a twist.

Rather than acknowledging that such models of purity and innocence as Cinderella might be something toward which to aspire, or look up to as an ideal, the author has decided to destroy that which she cannot attain in real life. Envy? Jealousy? A desperate, angry attempt to knock from her pedestal a fairy tale princess realizing such is not to be in her own life? Just another writing assignment for an anthology to make a buck or two and let’s take a contrary viewpoint and run with it? Anyone’s guess. But the lashing out at the seeming unattainable, to make mockery of the ideal, to bring down to one’s own level rather than striving to raise one’s own station is something the immature adolescent is prone to do, not the mature adult....

 Sadly, there are those who lash out and can think only low thoughts of mockery or destruction, the cutting down to size those who profess or portray what we might be, or become, because they have, in one way or another, given up on themselves and wish to destroy that which gives others inspiration or hope. Tis a pity their glass of Life is always half empty and at every opportunity they feel an unrepentant urge to share their from-the-heart (“There! Take that!”), disappointment-with-life vision with those who strive to set their sights higher.

“All That Fairy Tale Crap” is a fine example of this view and is more likely to find its target audience among an uncritical, morally ambivalent adolescent crowd (if not adolescent by age, then by psychological maturity). In this respect I give it a Well done. Stories like this, in the final analysis, reveal to the careful reader more about the author than anything worthwhile to be revealed or added to the canon of the fairy tale itself.
This is a perfect illustration of everything that is wrong and evil and degraded about SF/F today. Then realize that the authoress is the Scalziette who was elected to the SFWA Board by the pinkshirts earlier this year. Rachel Swirsky happens to be the vice-president of the SFWA.

Perhaps Swirsky believes she is "subverting" Cinderella. If so, that would only serve to demonstrate the lack of talent in modern SF/F. This is how you subvert Cinderella if you have genuine literary talent. Swirsky has less story-telling ability than the average porn director shooting four films in an LA mini-mansion rented for the day.

There is no getting around it. The SFWA is run by a group of fat and freakish losers who write mediocre fiction about soldiers swapping blow jobs and Cinderella going down on her stepsisters. If you didn't believe me before when I said I didn't mind being kicked out of the organization after my failed attempt to salvage it, perhaps you will now.


UPDATE: I am informed that when she's not writing poisonous crap, Swirskyella enjoys sock-puppeting her own Wikipedia page. As my emailer noted, these people are charlatans down to the bone.

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84 Comments:

Anonymous Idle Spectator December 15, 2013 4:20 PM  

Science fiction is so cool. With this new transgressive diversity, now the cool kids can read it.

Anonymous Krul December 15, 2013 4:25 PM  

From the article:

Here are the first, second, fourth and fifth opening lines of “All That Fairy Tale Crap”:

I was supposed to go to the ball, but I spent the night licking out my stepsister instead.
Bethesda moaned and rustled mulberry silk high up her thighs. “There, there, no, faster, come on, faster, please…”
...
Never marry a prince when you can eat a pussy.
Never ride a pumpkin when you can steal cab fare.


And we are gifted with this gem later on:

The heroes of fairy tales are straight. And skinny, too, so they’re straight and narrow.

People think this is because of heterosexism and beauty standards. It isn’t. Snow White takes a cock in her scrawny cunt because she can’t imagine how to be twisty.


This is much worse than "Savannah's clit throbbed". At least that book had the virtue of being sincere wish fulfillment fantasy. This trash has no purpose except to degrade and destroy other peoples' hopeful fantasies, even while it parasitically depends on those fantasies. It is ugly for the sake of ugliness.

Anonymous Salt December 15, 2013 4:29 PM  

The SFWA should be ashamed at her membership, but I'm sure she (must gender identify the SFWA correctly) is not. Just how McRapey might lioness-ize such crap as worthy makes me deadly curious.

Anonymous NewAnubis December 15, 2013 4:31 PM  

This is just disturbing. I wonder if the SF writing world is on the trajectory of public schools in its m/f imbalance.

Further, I'm about at the end of my tether with virtually everything seen, advertised, heard, implied, imparted, etc. being either some double-entendre or blatantly sexual.

An intellectual is someone who discovered something more interesting in sex. But it sure doesn't allow them to escape the morass of our (sub)culture.

Anonymous The other skeptic December 15, 2013 4:34 PM  

On the other hand, is Kratman going to add a canal to Santa Josephina

Anonymous Gundeck Bob December 15, 2013 4:41 PM  

"fat and freakish losers..."
satisfying to the core.

Anonymous Ulmer Miller December 15, 2013 4:46 PM  

Just don't make the mistake I made and do an image search of the authoress...

Anonymous Truth December 15, 2013 4:47 PM  

Rachel Swirsky fine author who sells fiction to all the top markets. Professional jealousy is all this is. Vox's whole crusade against diversity in fiction is about professional jealousy.

Anonymous Axe Head December 15, 2013 4:48 PM  

Is she Jewish? This is the kind of filth that comes from Jews.

Anonymous Porky December 15, 2013 4:51 PM  

The race toward idiocracy is picking up the pace. The Museum of Fart should be realized within the next decade or two.

Anonymous VD December 15, 2013 4:57 PM  

Rachel Swirsky fine author who sells fiction to all the top markets. Professional jealousy is all this is.

This is a woman who has never published a single novel. Her best-selling ebook is several hundred thousand ranks lower than mine on Amazon. You're seriously going to go with "jealousy" on this one?

Is she Jewish? This is the kind of filth that comes from Jews.

You are correct, as it happens.

Anonymous Krul December 15, 2013 4:58 PM  

You can read All That Fairytale Crap online, you know. It's pretty short. I can see why Vox is so jealous of this fine author.

Blogger John Cunningham December 15, 2013 5:10 PM  

Lefties are compelled and driven to destroy all traditional culture, in order to ready the masses for new myths. consider the destruction of Chinese culture during the Cultural Revolution. for example, a ballet company in NYC is doing a nude, X-rated version of the Nutcracker. nothing must be allowed to remain from the old Christian/bourgeois past--
http://tmagazine.blogs.nytimes.com/2013/12/09/after-hours-an-nc-17-retelling-of-the-nutcracker/?WT.mc_id=TM-D-I-NYT-MOD-MOD-M335C-ROS-1213-HDR&WT.mc_ev=click&WT.mc_c=232510

Anonymous dw December 15, 2013 5:28 PM  

"You are correct, as it happens."

They just can't help themselves. What is it about them that compels so many of them to work towards the destruction of Western civilization?

Anonymous REG December 15, 2013 5:35 PM  

Does Dave Truesdale get a 'after review bottle of brain bleach' with every article he writes? If those stories are what are being offered, he deserves the giant economy bottle.

Anonymous kh123 December 15, 2013 5:37 PM  

I'll break the rule for one comment...

Truth... In all honesty, and I say this without malice... you might want to drop any definitive filler words like "the", or tense, or most anything considered proper English, while adding improper commas and liberal exclamations. It adds the proper drive-by Youtube tone and makes the comment more in character with the historical revolutionary. Not to mention that it's more entertaining for the reader. Here, look:

Rachel Swirsky fine author. sells fiction to all tops market. Profession jealouses, is this. Vox whole crusade against diverse in fiction, is about a professional jealous!!!

I know I'd take this a bit more seriously.

Anonymous Jewish Spectator December 15, 2013 5:40 PM  

NO ONE FEELS MY PAIN BECAUSE HOLOCAUST.

Tear down whitey while trying to look like them!

Anonymous Blume December 15, 2013 5:40 PM  

That is a great version of Cinderella by Tanith Lee Vox. It doesn't feel subversive to me though. It instead twists the fairy tale to tell another moral. That revenge can be a poison to both parties. Four people suffered for the sins of one man. Still teaching classical morality while turning the old legend up on its head.

Swirksky's is just trash. Its a badly written GTA: Cinderella.

Anonymous Krul quotes Rabbit #1 December 15, 2013 5:41 PM  

"...it is fun to see losers fuming because feminism has MADE SF/F BETTER."

Anonymous Idle Spectator December 15, 2013 5:47 PM  

NO ONE FEELS MY PAIN BECAUSE HOLOCAUST.

Tear down whitey while trying to look like them!


But what about the Cambodians that suffered far more in their genocide at the hands of Pol Pot? Unfortunately they only got the movie The Killing Fields instead of Steven Spielberg.

Anonymous Jewish Spectator December 15, 2013 5:47 PM  

SHUT UP HITLER.

Anonymous Truth December 15, 2013 5:53 PM  

"Her best-selling ebook is several hundred thousand ranks lower than mine on Amazon."

Would someone with no professional jealousy bother to do that research? Anywho, her short fiction is constantly appearing in top markets, as evidenced by the piece in Apex.

And as for the piece being derivative, didn't Apex put out a call for retold fairy tales? I'm not sure how you can fault her for following the theme.

And I should mention that Tanith Lee identifies as a feminist and also writes lesbian fiction under a psuedonym. So she'd likely approve of Swirsky's piece.

Anonymous tiredofitall December 15, 2013 5:57 PM  

"Rachel Swirsky fine author who sells fiction to all the top markets. Professional jealousy is all this is. Vox's whole crusade against diversity in fiction is about professional jealousy." - Truth

1.) Swirsky's writing is about as bad as the ninth graders who occasionally show up to our local writer's group with fanfic about whatever trendy shit is in now, expecting everybody to fall on our knees and worship their brilliance.

1a.) As far as I can tell, most of her output is either put out on Tor.com, or given away to various anthologies. If that's "selling fiction to all the top markets", then you have an extremely low bar for top markets.

2.) Professional jealousy, really? That's the best you can manage? Just for a goof I read some of her work that can be found online, and I was not impressed. If I put her work up against most folks first time efforts I'd challenge you to pick her out.

3.) If being against "diversity" in fiction makes you jealous then I must be the most jealous motherfucker on the planet. Personally I'm sick of the uber-female trans gay black heroine who can kill a legion of evil cismales and still please her lesbian cyborg wereseal life-mate genre that seems to be overtaking fiction.

For someone who goes by the handle "truth" you sure seem to have a problem expressing it.


"Just don't make the mistake I made and do an image search of the authoress..." - Ulmer Miller

Oh God my EYES!! It's like someone took a woman who could be reasonably attractive and pumped her up with that gun from Dig-Dug.

Blogger Eric Wilson December 15, 2013 5:58 PM  

That is a great version of Cinderella by Tanith Lee Vox. It doesn't feel subversive to me though. It instead twists the fairy tale to tell another moral. That revenge can be a poison to both parties. Four people suffered for the sins of one man. Still teaching classical morality while turning the old legend up on its head.

I was going to say something along these lines but you beat me to it. That was a great short story.

Anonymous Johnathan Knight December 15, 2013 6:11 PM  

Axe Head wrote something about filth coming from Jews. I disagree with that remark.

Anyway, Truth, you're clinging to this idea of jealousy, but it doesn't really seem to have much basis in reality. Vox demonstrably sales better than Swirsky. And his blog gets a ton more traffic. The idea that you would jump to jealousy seems, to me, to be rooted in one of the following possibilites:

1. Ignorance. Because you haven't looked deeply into the subject matter. You just assumed that some of your favorite authors are the epitome of success. We're all human, and we all look silly with assumptions some times, so no sweat, in my small opinion.

2. You hold the belief that top markets for short fiction are worth striving for. I'm sure for some folks they are, and that's a great personal goal someone might have. That said, and this is a sad truth, short fiction isn't exactly noted as a form of top tier achievement.
-Perhaps also of note, there's a general sense (shared by quite a few massively successful authors) that certain publications are more interested in agenda than quality. An honest and objective conversation about the merits of being published in Apex should rightfully consider this criticism, in my opinion.

3. You honestly believe Vox deserves your hatred, so honest conversation and consideration be damned. Label and attack. Label and attack.

Blogger Krul December 15, 2013 6:19 PM  

You know at first I was a fired up because I thought this was some new book from some big important SF/F author (SFWA VP and all that).

Now that I know it's just some random sophomoric magazine short story from some random pretentious nobody - well who cares? It's cheap fodder for entertainment by ridicule, but not nearly important enough to get angry about.

Blogger Doom December 15, 2013 6:32 PM  

I can't help but thinking of Space Bunny as an example of that very fairytale. Oh, it's not what it seems, and princes are... well... what you are. Yeah, I am far enough that I don't have to realize the problems and difficulties... And that's how I like it. As such, I turn you into a prince protagonist. I don't want to know more. It's good enough. It makes me consider keeping myself in check. I deal enough with meaner realities, I want the notion that there is something easier, better.

People who can't have, or create, the notion of a more wholesome hope-tale... They are well and truly damned, because the only directions are up and in hope or down and in hate.

Anonymous Truth December 15, 2013 6:44 PM  

"short fiction isn't exactly noted as a form of top tier achievement."

Noted or not, a place like Tor doesn't accept amateur hour short fiction. Neither does Apex, Clarkesworld, Strange Horizons, or Beneath Ceaseless Skies. Those are some of the most notoriously difficult markets to conquer. Unless all of these places are full of illiterate editors the evidence would point to Swirsky not being some amateur. You can knock the content all you want, but you simply don't crack all those markets without a lot of talent.

As for professional jealousy, I'm just (succesfully) bringing out Vox's insecurity. But you can't deny the above. And those of you complaining about her looks? That's juvenile and irrelevant.

Anonymous VD December 15, 2013 6:50 PM  

Would someone with no professional jealousy bother to do that research?

Certainly. You made a claim. I demonstrated it to be not only false, but absurd. For crying out loud, I don't even write short stories.

And as for the piece being derivative, didn't Apex put out a call for retold fairy tales? I'm not sure how you can fault her for following the theme..

That is a good point. I had no idea what Apex did or did not do.

So she'd likely approve of Swirsky's piece.

Perhaps. I doubt it. The piece is rancid shit, as the reviewer noted. I think Tanith Lee is too good a storyteller to approve of that sort of thing, even if she is a lesbian feminist. I am a libertarian and a Christian, but I don't approve of terrible fiction written by people who share my sympathies.

Anonymous VD December 15, 2013 6:52 PM  

As for professional jealousy, I'm just (succesfully) bringing out Vox's insecurity.

You're doing nothing of the kind. I'm not even slightly insecure about my writing. It is what it is. You gammas really need to stop projecting your unstable psychologies on everyone. Everyone is not like you. I am not like you.

Blogger Casey Neumiller December 15, 2013 6:59 PM  

I'm more than a bit horrified after reading that story. That's considered "good" by SFWA? Definitely means I won't be joining if I ever qualify (which I currently don't, since both novels I've put out are independent).

Anonymous Discard December 15, 2013 7:00 PM  

John Cunningham is correct to say that the Left will do anything to destroy all real culture. What they give us in exchange is Soviet Culture 2.0, a synthetic product masquerading as the real thing. Homosexuals, primitives, and sneering wannabes are the heroes of the new narrative they have created. But, given the clay feet of their idols, it is easy to denigrate them in turn. MLK, the plagiarist and Gospel-hawking satyr. Castro, the Caudillo who ruled for 49 years without an election. Al Gore, the millionaire 200 times over. The point is not to convince the fool, but to influence the onlookers. If our culture is to be destroyed, let their surrogate go down too. We can build on the ruins.

Blogger Eric December 15, 2013 7:04 PM  

Is there an audience for this kind of stuff? I could bang out a computer program in a day that writes stories like this.

Blogger tz December 15, 2013 7:09 PM  

Worse, they're charlatan invertebrates!

They do not understand the difference between mockery and satire. The latter can even be high art - the more subtle the better.

Blogger RobertT December 15, 2013 7:21 PM  

I have no problems with you being kicked out of anything. To thine own self be true. It's a sign of character. I read recently that you can get away with anything as long as you're not boring. That's the world that I see out there. Keep plowing.

Anonymous Johnathan Knight December 15, 2013 7:27 PM  

Truth,

Personally, I could care less about her looks.

Regarding Swirsky's talent, I consider my personal opinion irrelevant. Because it's nothing more than a subjective opinion. Some folks like her writing, some don't. That's fair and human, in my opinion.

Regarding the markets you listed, yes, they're difficult to get published in. But why? Is it because they only accept the best of the best? Maybe. Again, it's a subjective opinion. In my irrelevant opinion, I think some of them publish a lot of strong stuff. But regardless of what I think, many folks put forward the argument that (some) of these publications are so difficult to crack because they're, for lack of a better word, incestuous and catering to an agenda. I don't know how much merit these accusations have, but I think it's silly to dismiss them whole cloth without thought.

It's like the criticism leveled against Scalzi: the idea that he's pandering to Outrage and Causes and Headdesking for the PR benefits. And I think anyone who denies the PR benefits of agreeing with the political left in the publishing world is either naive or being less than honest.

To say that you're successfully pointing out Vox's insecurities, well, I suppose I believe you believe what you're saying. But I don't think you're making a very strong case here. Mostly because your conclusion seems to be based on the idea that you're right, he's wrong, you're pretty, he's ugly.

Anonymous Truth December 15, 2013 7:27 PM  

"Perhaps. I doubt it. The piece is rancid shit, as the reviewer noted. I think Tanith Lee is too good a storyteller to approve of that sort of thing, even if she is a lesbian feminist. I am a libertarian and a Christian, but I don't approve of terrible fiction written by people who share my sympathies."

I'm fine with this statement. If you're commentary is that the piece is poorly written, so be it. No one can take that away from you. But saying it's terrible because of it's ideals is a silly thing. I've often considered reading A Throne of Bones and because you're so articulate with the blog I think it'd be a good piece. That doesn't mean I don't hate everything you stand for, but I'm not going to criticize your fiction based on that. (Though I will avoid it based on that.)

You're right about Tanith Lee's storytelling. But I'm pretty sure she'd be considered an author of Pink SF. So where does that leave us? It's clear to me that the writing has to stand on its own on a by-author basis on not be thrown in to some theoretical subclass labeled "pink".

Anonymous Truth December 15, 2013 7:31 PM  

"(some) of these publications are so difficult to crack because they're, for lack of a better word, incestuous and catering to an agenda."

I agree with this also. Name value and friendship plays a role. But having work in all of those markets (and many respectable smaller markets) is strong evidence that there's more at work than literary incest or agenda catering.

Anonymous Mudz December 15, 2013 7:39 PM  

Wow, that was an incredibly well-told short story. Reminds me of some of the less pretty fairy-tales I read as a kid. Well chosen comparison.

You need to have a sense of beauty in order for its corruption or destruction to have poignancy or meaning. It means nothing to have a terrible person doing terrible things to other terrible people in a terrible world, because it could hardly make it any worse. That's just taking a snapshot of Hell, which is hardly imaginative, or even provocative. It's when Hell is assaulting the gates of the Fair City of the Good Folk, tearing down its glittering towers and razing its enchanted woods, inflicting unspeakable misery upon its inhabitants - that we actually care. Where something actually meaningful is threatened. (As long as the story itself is more interesting than - 'everything that is good, dies horribly'.)

If Hell attacks another Hell. Who cares? Let 'em burn.

A story like Swirsky's is 1) Bad, 2) Uninteresting and 3) Really sick. It's just juvenile perversion in the laziest way possible, which says there was nothing good to care about or want to preserve in the first place.

So, hats off to Tanith. I'll have to get some of her books.

Anonymous Mudz December 15, 2013 7:43 PM  

But I'm pretty sure she'd be considered an author of Pink SF. So where does that leave us?

Same place we always were. Writing terrible Pink SF doesn't automatically make everything you write terrible Pink SF. This short story wasn't even sci-fi was it?

Anonymous Mudz December 15, 2013 7:45 PM  

'terrible Pink SF'

Forgive my redundancies.

Anonymous NateM December 15, 2013 7:58 PM  

Reading her story I just imagined the narrator as a cross dressing Hunter S Thompson, and that made it infinitely more enjoyable than anything the author ever has done

Blogger buzzardist December 15, 2013 8:22 PM  

I am informed that when she's not writing poisonous crap, Swirskyella enjoys sock-puppeting her own Wikipedia page.

Impressive. Not only did she write her own Wikipedia entry, she proceeded to do so with an account that had written a sum total of one article. Then, when confronted with the irregularity and reminded of the "no editing your own bio" rule, she protested that she was not herself, but someone else, and that she actually did do a lot of minor editing on Wikipedia, but just didn't log in to do it, thus leaving no record of it.

Yeah, ummm,..right.

And the account has since been deleted. Whether by the person herself or by Wikipedia, it's hard to say, but who deletes their own Wikipedia account? How does one even go about that?

Anonymous Johnathan Knight December 15, 2013 8:53 PM  

For what it's worth, I just read her short story.

My opinion: it's not a story. Defining it as metafiction doesn't make it a story. It strikes me as more of a confused, angry rant than a work of fiction. Just my opinion.

If anyone is interested, it seems Rachel disagrees with the accusation that she attempted to edit her own wikipedia page. From her twitter account less than an hour ago:

Rachel Swirsky ‏@rachelswirsky
"Ftr, my Wikipedia entry is by @BrentaBlevins who has long gone by the nym rural writer as part of an unfinished project on female writers."

Anonymous Harsh December 15, 2013 9:10 PM  

Rachel Swirsky fine author who sells fiction to all the top markets. Professional jealousy is all this is. Vox's whole crusade against diversity in fiction is about professional jealousy.

By that metric it's not much of a stretch to say that Vox was kicked out of the SFWA because of professional jealousy. I like where you're going with this.

Blogger buzzardist December 15, 2013 9:13 PM  

"Ftr, my Wikipedia entry is by @BrentaBlevins who has long gone by the nym rural writer as part of an unfinished project on female writers."

Curious, so she claims not to have written it herself, but she knows who did, and it's a close professional pal of hers.

Who knows who wrote their Wikipedia bio?

The "no editing your own bio" rule apparently doesn't include asking a friend to do it for you?

Anonymous Tizona December 15, 2013 9:53 PM  

Truth:

"I agree with this also. Name value and friendship plays a role. But having work in all of those markets (and many respectable smaller markets) is strong evidence that there's more at work than literary incest or agenda catering."

That is *unless the work is primarily LGBTQ oriented.* The standard for that type of material is abysmal. I think that most of the sniping against the gatekeepers here ironically follows the same mostly specious arguments of any niche group that feels underrepresented or oppressed - that there is some evil cabal keeping them down.

The absolute double-standard that allows piss-poor LGBTQ journalism and literature and film to get essentially a free pass (see: Matthew Shephard hoax, any number of gay-themed documentaries and films, and the awful short story in question, for instance) but keeps a mercilessly tight reign on non-ideological stuff gives credence to every griper on the planet.

I happen to trust most of the gatekeepers a good portion of the time: when it comes to the actual mechanics of story and good storytelling, they know what they are doing I think that truly great work will often (if not always) get through, and that those who don't get through should by all means produce and distribute their work independently. That being said, the demonstrable fact that those same gatekeepers who will ruthlessly weed out the weak constantly allow inferior work through simply because of the "message."

I don't have a problem with it - sure, it's craven and (like most liberal assistance programs) demeaning to the dignity of the person (even if that person is an aggressive / fisting champion of Fishtown) in that it rewards them for their agenda over their talent. The actual pool of good or great feminist or LGBTQ-centric artists is abysmal - and I wonder how much great work is skipped over for the LCD drivel of the no-talent Swirsky's of the world.

Anonymous TWS December 15, 2013 9:54 PM  

Tainth Leigh pink? No.

Blogger Markku December 15, 2013 9:56 PM  

But I'm pretty sure she'd be considered an author of Pink SF.

I have read Birthgrave. Now, if she were to write Pink SF, then the setting of the book is as fertile ground for it as it possibly could. But it is just plain SF&F (yes, it indeed is both). That is, it doesn't use the particular interests of either sex to pull the reader in, it is neutral in that.

And yes, it contains ELEMENTS you would associate with Pink SF, and you could find a few quotes that would make it appear that way. But only a few. And nothing that so unambiguously tells you what the story is about as "Never marry a prince when you can eat a pussy."

Anonymous Mudz December 15, 2013 10:17 PM  

That's good news, Markku. I was actually wondering, since I did a quick search for Lee's books, and they didn't strike me (at face value) as obvious wereseal fiction. Talk about misdirection.

And I was going to start with 'The Birthgrave'.

Blogger Markku December 15, 2013 10:31 PM  

As for Lee's Cinderella story, I'm glad that it didn't spell out the identity of the narrator, as that would have been just insulting the reader's intelligence.

Anonymous Oh please December 15, 2013 10:39 PM  

saying it's terrible because of it's ideals is a silly thing.

Wonder how many 1-star Amazon reviews of Vox's work are motivated by hatred of his political views. Lots would be my guess.

Anonymous Truth December 15, 2013 11:12 PM  

"Wonder how many 1-star Amazon reviews of Vox's work are motivated by hatred of his political views. Lots would be my guess."

I agree. But those folks aren't rating it based on content. Rather they're trying to sabotage Vox's ratings and by proxy his sales. (which obviously hasn't worked) But I don't think you can say that they hate his work because of the ideals because they likely haven't read his work.

Blogger Markku December 15, 2013 11:18 PM  

There is an obvious difference here. Vox's politics are incidental to AToB, but based on what we can see in those quotes, the story is a vehicle for Swirsky’s politics.

So, if you hate the politics, then of course you'll hate the story.

Blogger mmaier2112 December 15, 2013 11:18 PM  

Truth: it's truly pathetic you use that name to post under.

Just STFU. Please. You're embarrassing yourself.

Anonymous Truth December 15, 2013 11:29 PM  

Mmaier2112, thank you for that thoughtful and well-considered rebuke. Your intelligence shines through your comments and I am humbled that you'd consider me for the target of your pointed criticism.

Blogger Markku December 15, 2013 11:35 PM  

By the way, is that correspondence Truth or coherence Truth?

Anonymous The other skeptic December 16, 2013 12:12 AM  

Just STFU. Please. You're embarrassing yourself.

Actually not. He or she is only embarrassing the truth.

He or she is simply a worthless wanker.

Blogger rcocean December 16, 2013 12:41 AM  

1) Look at her picture. You'll find her as ugly on the outside as she is on the inside.

2) If some LGBT freak can sell 50,000 copies of book to some other LGBT freaks - it will be labeled a best seller. The number of people who buy fiction books in North America is incredibly small.

3) Is she Jewish? Why did you even have to ask!

Anonymous DonReynolds December 16, 2013 12:57 AM  

It is sad.
That is the only way I can describe marginal individuals who are enraged by those who try harder, or have more ability, or don't give up at the first obstacle. Used to, they would simply question the story of an extraordinary person....."that is an exaggeration" or maybe...."that is just a legend". In literature, I suppose you can take a timeless classic and scribble all over the cover and blacken out the illustrations with tacky beards and black eyes. Those with more time on their hands re-write the story to slime those better than themselves....even better than they can ever hope to be.
My ex-wife despised Snow White with a passion normally reserved for horrible characters. "She is too good to be true! Nobody is that nice!" I suppose my ex should know, she had a collection of thousands of pulp novels they sell to the curious at the corner drugstore. Her daddy gave her an allowance every week and that is what she bought.....soft-core porn marketed directly to young women, to familiarize them with the adult world before actually entering it. For twenty years after the wedding, she acted out all her favorite pulp novels so she could be like one of the big girls. I never managed to convince her that the novels were pure fiction, not how-to books.

Anonymous kfg December 16, 2013 1:13 AM  

" Professional jealousy is all this is."

Not knowing anything about Ms. Swirsky, but having a sneaking suspicion, I Googled a bio pic of her.

The irony, it burrrrns, my precioussssssssss.

Anonymous Will Best December 16, 2013 1:40 AM  

I love it when white authors from pre 1970 AD are held to the 2013 standards.

Anonymous Luke December 16, 2013 2:00 AM  

Faintly related, it turns out that there is now a male contraceptive good for 10 years, named Vasalgel. (Minor surgery to put in place, but much less traumatic than a vasectomy, AND fully reversible ahead of time.)


http://the-gaggle.com/2013/03/this-is-true-male-contraception-exists-is-simple-inexpensive-and-100-effective/

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Reversible_inhibition_of_sperm_under_guidance

Blogger Duke of Earl December 16, 2013 2:14 AM  

That Tanith Lee story is very good.

Blogger Duke of Earl December 16, 2013 2:17 AM  

I'm thinking the narrator is supposed to be Ashella. Who else would know the story so well after 200 years.

Anonymous Mudz December 16, 2013 2:28 AM  

Alright, easy lads. It's enough that her fiction is ugly, it's a tad cruel to start throwing fire at her face too. Besides, it's nothing that exercise and personality couldn't cure. She's (presently) unattractive, not a deformed crone.

And they could all look like Hitler's arsehole for all I cared, if they wrote good fiction. It just kinda sucks they've convinced themselves they don't want to be pretty.

Anonymous Jack Amok December 16, 2013 3:40 AM  

Besides, it's nothing that exercise and personality couldn't cure. She's (presently) unattractive, not a deformed crone.

And they could all look like Hitler's arsehole for all I cared, if they wrote good fiction. It just kinda sucks they've convinced themselves they don't want to be pretty.


But don't you see? That's exactly why they don't write good fiction. They're convinced themselves - in a perfect example of the real meaning of sour grapes - that they don't want to be pretty, don't want to be nice, don't want to be accomplished, and that if they can't be those things then nobody else should be either.

So they write stories tearing down the pretty and the nice and the accomplished, and that dooms their writing. You need characters who have at least some traits the reader finds admirable, something for the reader to aspire to, if you want the readers to connect with your characters. A spate of broken freaks can be briefly entertaining for the novelty value, but it doesn't provide the impact needed to carry off a story. Who cares about the plot if it happened to a bunch of forgettable characters.

When someone stops aspiring to be better than they are, I think they die inside. What can someone who's rejected the gift of Tomorrow have to tell the rest of us that's worth hearing?

Anonymous VD December 16, 2013 3:57 AM  

They're convinced themselves - in a perfect example of the real meaning of sour grapes - that they don't want to be pretty, don't want to be nice, don't want to be accomplished, and that if they can't be those things then nobody else should be either.

This also explains why they are constantly accusing me of being motivated by sour grapes even when the accusation makes no sense. They don't understand there are other motivations besides sour grapes and greed.

Anonymous Catan December 16, 2013 4:23 AM  

Relativists don't even believe in objective truth. By using the username 'Truth', this leftard wanker is doing the same thing to the truth as this feminist author-pig did to Cinderella.

There's nothing they won't torch and destroy if they think it will make them feel any better about their own failures.

Anonymous Catan December 16, 2013 4:28 AM  

Krul, your posting of the Cinderella story online has one comment:

Luscinia Hâfez - December 15, 2013

Definitely better than anything Vox Day has written or will ever write.


Hmmm...almost makes you wonder if this jealous individual happens to also be posting on Vox's blog...coincidentally complaining about Vox's supposed jealousy towards other authors...

Anonymous VD December 16, 2013 4:37 AM  

I doubt it. Andrew Marston has a certain style that is different than Truth's. There is one easy way to tell: Truth hasn't mentioned my writing, Tom Kratman's writing, Larry Correia's writing, or Dan Simmon's writing.

Luscinia Hâfez is Yama is Arachnothera etc is Andrew Marston.

Anonymous Jack Amok December 16, 2013 5:29 AM  

They don't understand there are other motivations besides sour grapes and greed.

I think properly their sin is envy, not greed, and envy is worse. If you have a nicer house than they do, they don't want to improve their house. They just want to burn yours down. A greedy man's fortune can at least be distributed after he is dead. And envious woman's legacy of destruction has no such remedy.

Anonymous Johnathan Knight December 16, 2013 5:39 AM  

I'm more curious who wrote the second review, the one that's apparently been deleted. I suppose it isn't surprising that it was deleted, considering that it was A) negative of the piece in general, and B) unapologetic of attacking Swirsky's appearance.

I'm not sure how I feel about what's fair-game when it comes to criticizing an author's looks. On one hand, it's certainly mean and doesn't necessarily have anything to do with the literary merit or capability of the author.

On the other hand, when analyzing the story of an author who's passed away, it's often considered more than fair to put the totality of their life under a microscope. It's arguable, I suppose, that Swirsky's characters (Griselda and Bethesda) are consistently noted as ugly in the story for a reason. I assume this is pointed out because it's meant to highlight the difference between "reality" and expectation when it comes to being a woman. Reality, of course, being arguably defined by the author's own particular experience.

And so there's a lack of joy expressed in the story, a sense that the real world didn't live up to all of those early promises, which leads to a rebellion of expectation. Is it reasonable to say that the prettier someone is, the less likely they are to ponder bitterness and find the judgmental nature of life troublesome?

Again, my problem with the story is that I didn't notice the story part of it. I did notice the self-described metafiction angle of it. That said, breaking the fourth wall isn't necessarily my problem. I was, for instance, a big fan of Vonnegut's Timequake, which was most certainly meta.

But who was the character in this story? Was it Cinderella, or the author's stand-in, or a giant caterpillar, or what? What was the character's goal? I imagine someone could point out that I'm missing the point. Someone could perhaps argue that the story features a character who knows who she's supposed to be, but doesn't feel capable of being that person.

What never fails to surprise me is the groupthink. The very act of questioning the literary merits of this short story seems to put someone outside the group. How dare a reviewer review it negatively or not be sycophantic to the ideology of the author. And so it is that one bad review leads the pack onto twitter to express their outrage. Folks aren't free to be honest, not without expecting some sort of backlash.

Speculative fiction: the playing field looks like high school, where cliques rule and sides have to be chosen.

Anonymous Jack Amok December 16, 2013 6:14 AM  

But who was the character in this story? Was it Cinderella, or the author's stand-in, or a giant caterpillar, or what? What was the character's goal? I imagine someone could point out that I'm missing the point. Someone could perhaps argue that the story features a character who knows who she's supposed to be, but doesn't feel capable of being that person.

You're just experiencing what I pointed out as the problem for these people. None of the characters had any traits you aspired to so you made no connection with any of them and the whole story became pointless.

Anonymous Johnathan Knight December 16, 2013 6:34 AM  

Jack,

The characters lack sympathy, certainly.

Within the story, the narrator writes:

"For the purposes of this story, you may consider me to be any one of the following, or any combination thereof. Feel free to switch up at any time.
• Cinderella
• The metafictional compilation of Cinderellas
• A prop for anachronistic jokes
• A stand–in for the author
• The pissed off ghost of the chick who told her story to some asshats named Grimm
• A caterpillar with sixteen feet wearing sixteen glass slippers, dreaming of smashing its cocoon and metamorphosing into the black hole that will devour the universe"

To me, this story is more of an article hiding behind the veil of fiction, so it's not terribly important who the character is. Much less what sort of arc the character goes through. It comes across as late night stream of conscious thought about how the author feels weighed down by fairy tales. Instead of being inspired, she's angry and confused and incomplete. And that's why there's a theft at the end. She feels like she's owed something, entitled to something, because something was taken away from her. The chance to be herself, perhaps.

To me, it comes across as emotionally immature.

Anonymous Felicity December 16, 2013 7:55 AM  

NewAnubis wrote: "An intellectual is someone who discovered something more interesting in sex."

If this had been "An intellectual is someone who discovered something more interesting than sex," we'd have a bon mot for the ages!

Anonymous kfg December 16, 2013 8:08 AM  

" Is it reasonable to say that the prettier someone is, the less likely they are to ponder bitterness and find the judgmental nature of life troublesome?"

It is reasonable, because it is observable to the point that it has predictive value. Which is why my previous post wasn't simply throwing fire at her face. It was noting the cognitive dissonance exhibited between her not wanting to be pretty and her vitriol against the pretty as well as against those who have noted said cognitive dissonance.

" The very act of questioning the literary merits of this short story seems to put someone outside the group."

Exactly the point.

OpenID cailcorishev December 16, 2013 8:28 AM  

• The pissed off ghost of the chick who told her story to some asshats named Grimm
• A caterpillar with sixteen feet wearing sixteen glass slippers, dreaming of smashing its cocoon and metamorphosing into the black hole that will devour the universe


These people have ruined sarcasm and irony by spraying them on everything they do with a fire hose. They write like they're auditioning for The Daily Show, but with none of the restraint that real humor requires because they have no sense of humor to judge with.

Blogger Tom Kratman December 16, 2013 8:43 AM  

Can't believe you folks missed the joke: "Pravda is Truth; Truth, Pravda.

Blogger Eric December 16, 2013 10:24 AM  

To me, this story is more of an article hiding behind the veil of fiction, so it's not terribly important who the character is.

Well, yeah. I think I saw this on a bumper sticker somewhere:

There’s a reason they call it the American dream. It ain’t gonna happen while you’re awake.

She's one of those people who thinks you haven't achieved the "American Dream" unless you're Bill Gates. No wonder she's bitter.

Anonymous Red Comet December 16, 2013 10:30 AM  

I can't imagine anyone would be interested in reading a whiny feminist's deconstruction of Cinderella other than other whiny feminists on tumblr.

Anonymous TWS December 16, 2013 10:54 AM  

There was a 'Truth' who did occasional trolling at isteve. Not sure if it was the same Truth but he writes the same.

Anonymous kfg December 16, 2013 11:07 AM  

Most people seem to have forgotten what the American Dream is (as opposed to The American Dream(tm) promoted by the Keynesian marketing geeks), so let us do a bit of review.

The American Dream is to own real estate outright and take one's living from it, so as to be beholden to no man. To be the Lord of the manor, even if the manor be rather humble.

The majority of people who have achieved the dream have tended to be, in all other respects, rather poor, having had to invest all of their limited capital into achieving it.

The American Dream is antithetical to The American Dream(tm), which holds that success is not determined by ownership, but by indebtedness. The former is the quest for liberty, the latter the quest for the best terms of indenture.

Liberalism is the quest for mandatory universal indenture at the level of the lowest possible common denominator. That bitch Cinderella has to be kept in the salt mines until she's learned her place below the ugly stepsisters.

Anonymous Wendy December 16, 2013 1:58 PM  

If she is trying to be this generation's Bronte, heaven help us. Seems she aspires to be the ugly step-sister.

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