2.5 star review DIGNITY TAKES A HOLIDAY I got at Jessewave Reviews (and from some of the readers at Goodreads). Now, I fully expected people not to "get" the humor and am not surprised at the reaction. However, it still stings. When publisher Elizabeth North accepted the book, she said something along the lines of it being, in essence, a love story, and that it "pushed the envelope." She said she liked stories that pushed the envelope. I love her for making that statement, maybe even more now.
I do not believe it's ever an artist's place to explain or be defensive about his or her creative work. It either flies or it doesn't. Obviously, DIGNITY did not and will not "fly" for some readers. I do, however, scratch my head, at anyone who sets themselves up as a reviewer to not be familiar with a literary concept known as FARCE.
a. A light dramatic work in which highly improbable plot situations, exaggerated characters, and often slapstick elements are used for humorous effect.
b. The branch of literature constituting such works.
c. The broad or spirited humor characteristic of such works.
This type of humor has been around for a long time. And beneath it is usually a very simple message. And there's a very simple message at the heart of DIGNITY: it's about loving oneself when the world is telling you you're not worthy and about believing that love is out there for you regardless of, again, the world telling you you're not worthy.
DIGNITY was a very different book for me to write. I never wrote anything like it before and doubt that I ever will again. I don't know if I have it in me--it's ALL show and NO tell.
Anyway, I know that opinions are just that, but I did need to vent a bit about a review that cut to the quick.
P.S. At about 3 o'clock this afternoon, reviewer Carey Parrish weighed in on DIGNITY on his blog The Outer View, giving it 5 stars out of 5 and saying, "A great read, and highly recommended, Dignity Takes A Holiday is Rick R. Reed at his best..."
Sunday, February 27, 2011
My WORST review ever!
Real Men. True Love. Rick R. Reed is an award-winning and bestselling author of more than fifty works of published fiction. He is a Lambda Literary Award finalist. Entertainment Weekly has described his work as “heartrending and sensitive.” Lambda Literary has called him: “A writer that doesn’t disappoint…” Find him at www.rickrreedreality.blogspot.com. Rick lives in Palm Springs, CA, with his husband, Bruce, and their fierce Chihuahua/Shiba Inu mix, Kodi.