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Note to Self

When will you learn that even the slightest bit of fangirling about an author, artist, musician, or whatever gets you kicked in the teeth? Don't do it. No matter how much you like their work, or how long you have worked in the same community, once they are famous, don't try to talk to them about it. You are nobody to them now.

If you even try to express any familiarity or appreciation, you will be humiliated, abused, talked down to, and dogpiled on by their groupies. You will swiftly be reminded of your place as a nameless nobody, regardless of the time that you have know the person in your community. They're famous now, you aren't, therefore your name and existence are forgotten.

You might, might, be allowed a quick "Congratulations on your new book" in passing, but don't expect it to be acknowledged. Insects and furniture are not addressed. They'll just accept it as their due, and carry on with their groupies.

Also, never expect them to behave like others in their field. After all, each one is a special snowflake, you know. You experience counts for nothing to judge otherwise.

This has been a reminder from HKU, The School of Hard Knocks.

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( 16 comments — Leave a comment )
harvey_rrit
Mar. 4th, 2010 06:58 pm (UTC)
As long as you don't label and stereotype and pigeonhole me... well, as long as you don't do it AGAIN... I won't ever do that to you.

Matthew Joseph Harrington
ravan
Mar. 4th, 2010 07:07 pm (UTC)
The problem is, when people who had previously behaved like ordinary folks suddenly live down to the "published author/famous person" stereotypes, I end up having to assume it's the event that caused the change that causes it. I can find no other reason.

Seriously, I'm almost to the point of being unwilling to read any book written by a friend or acquaintance unless they personally ask me to for fear I might like it, and any subsequent comment be seen as some sort of fannish stalking.
harvey_rrit
Mar. 4th, 2010 07:16 pm (UTC)
Shouldn't be any change involved for me, then. I've always surmised that I was here to guide and nurture the rest of the species, and I find it's counterproductive to rub it in. :D
ladyqkat
Mar. 4th, 2010 07:21 pm (UTC)
Mebbe we should conspire to trip up the followers with our canes. *grin*

The attitude is not cool and downright sucky. Is it the mostly the author or the self-styled bodyguard followers? I have seen both displayed at cons and don't know which is more annoying.

I would ask who, but I don't want to pry where I don't need to.

ravan
Mar. 4th, 2010 09:18 pm (UTC)
It's both, and not someone you know, I think.
silverstorm2013
Mar. 4th, 2010 10:20 pm (UTC)
Should I call the brute squad?
(Deleted comment)
harvey_rrit
Mar. 5th, 2010 10:08 pm (UTC)
I seriously cannot comprehend what makes some authors act like that. At the very least it's contrary to their own best interests.

Among other things, I am constantly desperate for new stuff to read. If the fen get discouraged, then there's no new authors, and I'm screwed.

Also, I always enjoy hanging with the fannish. It restores my spirit.

And I owe my career to the fact that Larry Niven feels the same way.
ravan
Mar. 23rd, 2010 10:39 am (UTC)
Larry is cool, but I sort of avoid him because I don't want to be a groupie. I wish I'd met him and had chance to shoot the breeze before I knew he was Larry Niven.
harvey_rrit
Mar. 24th, 2010 12:54 am (UTC)
Should you ever be at a Con and see a man with good clothes and a REALLY good beard, talking to some other guy who uses a dragonhead cane, has a hippie combover*, and looks like he may have been dressed by having someone fling clothes onto him in the dark, just come on over and join the conversation. I've never known anyone to feel self-conscious talking to me, and any of that you feel around Larry will swiftly vanish. (He's so well-adjusted and amiable and cheerful that afterwards I wonder why I didn't give him a good shaking. Never think of it at the time.)

*Hippie combover: thin hair in front, ponytail in back. I got tired of cutting my hair.
ysabetwordsmith
Mar. 20th, 2010 04:31 pm (UTC)
O_O
Then your author "friends" are assholes.

I've spent time with a substantial number of pros. A few of them are, yes, assholes; I make a point of avoiding those in the future. But most of them are wonderful people who are delighted to make friends with somebody who will let them talk about the weather or history or their garden instead of The Book(s). They are particularly fond of friends who predate their fame, because they know those folks really like them and aren't just groupies. Really ... it's kind of lonely, when people idolize you but don't actually know you, and then you need somebody willing to block the door for you at 2 AM and keep the groupies from following you, so you can get some frigging sleep.
ravan
Mar. 23rd, 2010 10:36 am (UTC)
Re: O_O
That's the thing - I try not to discuss their book projects any more intensely than I would any other occupational project that I am also interested in - writing, music, software, fabric arts, etc. If I want to read The Book, or hear The CD, it's because I'm interested, not a fangirl. Just like I'll talk about computers, or my fabric projects (and let in-person people fondle the stuff), our gardens, our day jobs. And then the conversation moves back to other interests - their other projects, our mutual hobbies (since I usually see them at conventions), how life has been treating them, etc.

I will seldom actually become friends with a person after they become "famous", for fear of being seen as a stalking fangirl, unless I meet them and get to know them in a context where their fame/fandom doesn't come up. (Seriously, it didn't really occur to me for several months that you were published, and I'm still not sure what, and haven't wanted to dig for the info.)

If my friends, especially casual ones, do become published, I will usually not read their stuff. That's the mistake I made with this one - I went ahead and read a friend's book. Yes, she apologized for the matter later, after I rubbed her face in it when we actually saw each other, but still.

I really would rather have friends who happen to be authors/musicians/artists/actors/etc than know authors/musicians/artists/actors/etc who I call "friends".

What's the difference between a science fiction author and an auto mechanic? The auto mechanic probably makes more per year, unless the author has a day job.
ysabetwordsmith
Mar. 23rd, 2010 05:37 pm (UTC)
Re: O_O
>> I will seldom actually become friends with a person after they become "famous", for fear of being seen as a stalking fangirl, unless I meet them and get to know them in a context where their fame/fandom doesn't come up. <<

Well, my background is different -- I hang around writers, musicians, artists, etc. and have in various venues for many years. A majority of my "famous" friends are people I met by reviewing their work! I like reading things by people I know.

>>(Seriously, it didn't really occur to me for several months that you were published, and I'm still not sure what, and haven't wanted to dig for the info.)<<

*laugh* That's impressive. Most people don't make it 5 minutes without learning that about me. I'll resist the impulse list what I do.

>>What's the difference between a science fiction author and an auto mechanic? The auto mechanic probably makes more per year, unless the author has a day job.<<

Too true, and the mechanic probably gets more respect too.
harvey_rrit
Mar. 24th, 2010 01:03 am (UTC)
Re: O_O
>:[
Also true.
It's not like an SF/F author ever says, "Well, it took a lot longer to write than I expected, because one of the subplots was shot, and I had to replace a couple of characters, so you owe me another two bucks on top of the cover price."
ravan
Mar. 31st, 2010 12:37 am (UTC)
Re: O_O
ROTFLMAO!!

Don't forget about the character who sneaks in and steals the story!
ravan
Mar. 31st, 2010 12:50 am (UTC)
Re: O_O
I figured out that you committed editry first, actually and also did a few reviews.

I, of course, never finish anything worth reading except blog posts and stuff for work.
( 16 comments — Leave a comment )

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