Wednesday, May 30, 2012

My Response to the Bizarre Criticism of Frank Bill's Book of Short Stories

First of all, feast your eyes on this bizzare "review".

The writer of that "review" censors any comments he doesn't like, so I've decided to reprint my response to his "criticism" here:

First of all, who are "These authors, who write like Bill and who are featured in popular crime fiction ezines across the web"? I think you should name all of "these authors" so that "these authors" may respond to your thin, unfounded (and, in your own article, unsupported) 'criticism.'

Speaking of criticism, are you aware of the difference between 'constructive' and 'destructive' criticism? You've provided us with an example of 'destructive' criticism. In short, you've said nothing helpful to readers or to the writer. Instead of turning your criticism into a personal attack (your sour grapes comment was appropriate, seeing as how you seem to have a mouthful of them), why not explain to readers and Frank Bill how the writer might improve his work (but that's not really the point of your article, is it? I refer you back to the sour grapes you must be choking on at this point).

Finally, a word about Frank Bill's book. I'll grant that it's not for everybody. Frank has his own style (something that bothered you, though you failed to pick up on the fact that it was a matter of style). You either like it or you don't. There are better ways to state it than you did. In Frank Bill's defense, I find that his writing accomplishes the establishment of a particular culture the way Jim Thompson's early novels attempted (but, unlike Frank Bill's collection) and failed (Thompson is one of my all-time favorite writers, but his first couple of novels are almost unreadable). Your failure to recognize Frank Bill's attention to a southern Indiana culture (whether made up or not doesn't matter since Frank has done such an excellent job of making this culture authentic within his work) most of us would not have the stones to go experience ourselves demonstrates that you indeed only took a glance at the work (which cancels your entire review as it is based on shoddy homework) and that you do not read closely enough to warrant the title of 'critic' in the first place.

PS-- What in the world does stamina have to do with writing a novel??? If that's what you think it takes, then it makes sense you've had to self-publish...

(Someone at the site is claiming to have removed comments for blahlahblah reason.  So much for free speech, eh Sparky?)