"If you don't have anything nice to say, shut the hell up."
Or keep your fingers off the keyboard, as it were. Please forgive the harsh language, but I believe we're dealing with a harsh reality.
I've noticed a disturbing trend. On the very same blogs where they post their hopes and dreams about one day being published, some bloggers choose to trash certain authors. Publicly. And often. Let's pick an author example out of the ether ... completely at random ... oh, let's see ... surely I can think of someone ... how about ... Stephenie Meyer.
I have read more vile venomous sentiments about Stephenie on the internet than there are directions about what to do to oneself sexually (and how) on every bathroom wall in every gas station from the dirty South to the Pacific Northwest. Her religion, her writing, her story world, her accessory choices - you name it. All up for grabs. People are entitled to their opinions. This is fine. But posting blogs/writing articles/excessively tweeting about how much you hate a writer and his or her work can be DANGEROUS.
ESPECIALLY IF YOU ARE AN UNPUBLISHED AUTHOR YOURSELF.
The publishing world is small. You have your Nathan Bransford's and your Rachelle Gardner's who are located outside New York City (although they do have internet, hem hem). But the vast majority of literary agencies and publishing houses are, in fact, in NYC. And most of these industry professionals know one another. They hang. They drink. They eat.
I often wonder if bloggers realize that when they slam Stephenie Meyer and her abilities, they are basically throwing down a ginormous "YO MAMA" gauntlet at the feet of Jodie Reamer, ESQ. And Writer's House Literary Agency. And Hachette Book Group, as well as all their divisions and imprints, including but not limited to Little, Brown, Orbit, Megan Tingley Books and the list goes on and on.
If I were going to "YO MAMA" anyone in the free world? None of these people would make the list.
I personally know authors (published) and writers (unpublished) who don't share my enthusiasm for the works of Ms. Meyer. To the last one, they very respectfully air this view by simply saying, "They aren't my cup of tea." And that's it. Because these writers/authors are professionals.
I often wonder if some writers think that expressing their views by trashing someone who is such an easy target will garner them more attention. Get their voice out there. Get them noticed.
So will pulling your dress up over your head so everyone can see your Day of the Week panties. But that's generally reserved for children and drunk people. Who, for the record, don't often make the best choices.
I guess my point is this ... slow down on the vitriol. Harness all that energy and eviscerate someone in fiction. And write your story well.
'Cause a blogger might come after you one day. And it's hard to run with your dress over your head.