Archive for March 2014
Melody Clark’s newest — On special for .99 on Amazon.
“An allegorical tale of our times that subtly depicts America and Europe in the modern era, while masquerading as a touching and funny tale of one haunted man and his family.” Max’s Ebook Email Espresso
Computer whizkid Edward’s adopted father has long told him his biological family rejected him at birth. After Edward’s brother Andrew reaches out to befriend him, the two men forge a friendship based on a shared dream – a sentient computer system that promises to greatly improve the world. When Edward arrives at the ancestral home of the family he believes abandoned him, he soon discovers that reality is very different from his adopted father’s paranoid delusion. And his family learns that Edward is far more damaged than they could ever have known.
There’s a vigorous energy in the most negative honesty that energizes any discussion. It has to be honest, however, and not crafted to serve some hidden agenda known only to the party directing that energy. Too often insults and personal attacks masquerade as honest criticism when they’re doing nothing more than masking a dishonest intention with a pretension of straightforwardness.
As always, I’ll go straight to the abstract. A good example of this is in the difference in the European versus US versions of the musical CHESS. Both of them were insulting to Americans (yeah, yeah, they let Freddie cry, it still didn’t mitigate the unfairness), but the European version was at least an honest expression of the perspective of the creators. It carried an insight (from that perspective) that gave valuable information to the audience. The music is searing, the content is stunning and though the libretto can occasionally set American teeth on edge, it’s a deeply honest piece of work. The Broadway version was politically correct bilge. And that’s why it opened and closed at the speed of sound. No one would have liked the American vision in the European version of Chess either, but they would have enjoyed the artistry behind it. It would still be running (against the din of gnashing teeth).
Not only does this kind of negative information benefit the audience in terms of pure information value (for instance, it helps Americans, in this case, see how we’re viewed from abroad), but it’s really as important to know who your real enemies are as it is your true friends.
Want to critique my work for honest reasons (because you genuinely reacted, as a reader, to it)? Fine, go for it. But please do so with a name I will recognize. I don’t buy fake positive reviews, and I don’t deserve negative ones with some other agenda (like to build up your own brand or to tear mine down for some other reason). Melody Clark is my own, real name. You call my home, that’s the name on the caller ID. I expect the same from people who want to disagree with me, too.
That is why I signed Anne Rice’s petition, and why I support it wholeheartedly. For writers, our names (all of our names, even pseudonyms) are part and parcel of our trade. It will impact us what is said about us, commercially as well as creatively. I think it’s only fair to ask our reviewers to play as fair and even a game.