When Your Work of Fiction Meets A Disturbing Reality

You know why there are seasons don’t you?

Zeus’ granddaughter Persephone was kidnapped and taken to the Underworld by Hades, the God of the Underworld. Hades he rode a chariot from a crack in the earth’s crust, saw Ms P and snatched persephher. Persephone’s mother, Demeter, the Goddess of the harvest, was devastated that her daughter had been kidnapped and went looking for Miss P, searching all over the earth. of course she searched alone because in Ancient Greek mythology there was no FBI, and Grandpa Zeus preferred to go around the world disguised as a swan so he could boink pretty women instead of helping with the investigation. Meanwhile, since Demeter spent so much time looking for Miss P, she sorta forgot about being the Goddess of the Harvest, which meant the crops withered, died, and it became winter.

Forever.

OH MY GOD WHAT A FUCKIN’ NIGHTMARE!Leda

Yes, I said that exactly like Marisa Tomei did in the movie My Cousin Vinny.

Then, one day Demeter figures out Hades, who it turns out is Miss P’s UNCLE, was persuaded to give up his niece Persephone for half of every year. So yeah, that’s why was have spring and summer. Part of the year Miss P is down with her Creepy Uncle, the other half of the year she’s making rainbows, drinking lemonade, and having a BBQ.

The point of this is, myths once gave explanations for what we now know to be scientific fact about the ear’s orbit around Mr Sun and blah blah blah.

It almost feels opportunistic of me to write this post, considering I have a book with an albino hero about to come out, but HOLY SHIT I read an article today that made me feel sick.  It was about African country Malawi, where people with albinism are being hunted for their bones because myths and superstitions say the bones will bring success and wealth, are made of gold, or have special powers, or can cure HIV. 

None of that is true. We have the scientific facts about albinism, but those bizzaro myths about the condition still exist. In the twenty-first century.

I feel very much like William Murphy standing on his soapbox today. I know tired to make light of something horrific. It’s the way I cope, or explain it to myself since I wrote a work of romance fiction with an albino hero who’s really just an ordinary great guy in a great suit. I tired to show William Murphy as a regular Joe with a skin condition that gives him fair skin and not so fabulous vision. But there are other fictions out there, like in Malawi, that continue to perpetuate myths about albinism–twisted horrifying myths. And they need to end. 

And Bing-O is the Game-O

books

Photo credit: Patrick Gage viaFoter.com / CC BY-NC-SA

Are you a reader?

Are you reading RIGHT NOW?

Well, of course you are.

So why aren’t you playing Shallowreader BINGO?

Anyone can play. And playing is so easy!

All you gotta do is READ, and You can read ANYTHING YOU WANNA– Romance, science fiction, non fiction, the back of a box of cereal, operating instructions for a Bosch Rotak 32R-r Electric lawn Mower, picture books, song lyrics. subtitles–ANYTHING!!  All you gotta do is READ and fill in the very pretty Bingo (was his name-o) form below.

It’s FREE! All the cool kids on Twitter play! Also, it’s so much fun to shout out BINGO! I should know because I won February’s Shallowreader Bingo.

I dare you try to guess my contributions on the March game card.

marchbingo

 

High horses and soapboxes

Literary fiction.
What the hell is it? Does anyone beyond the world of the critic care? Where does this snobbery come from? Who says it has more merit than a ripping Science Fiction story or heart-pleasing Romance?
 
A novel that speaks to the masses…hm, let’s say The Da Vinci Code, yes, that got bashed by the literati. Not the type of jam I’d put on my toast, but damn, people read that mother scratcher, and enjoyed it. Dickens wrote pulp fiction, and he was a master storyteller, yet he was considered low-brow at the time. Oddley enough, today you find him in the section labelled Literature, far away from Dan Brown. 

Oh you so readily embraced James Frey, didn’t you? I understand James Frey’s pain. I get why he lied. Snobbery. We all want to be loved. It’s a basic human need. He got popular and sold books. You’re just jealous you didn’t think of his ploy first.

 
Literary Fiction types turn up their noses at anything popular, as if popular negates a good story. I swear, if toilet paper didn’t exist there would be some out there who’d refuse a page of the Da Vinci Code to wipe their ass. Since Literary Fiction is all about content and style, God knows paper embossed with little Robert Langdons would leave skid marks.
 
Grow the hell up and quit your frickin’ high school clique mentality, you blow-hards. Break it down into genres. Admit Literary Fiction is a genre and move on. Read what you enjoy and quit bashing Romance (which outsells LF and all other genres hands-down), Science Fiction, Mysteries, and the Babysitters Club (ok bash that if you want). Meanwhile, is there anything wrong with the simple, catch-all term FICTION?
 
Hey Booksellers listen up! This means you Borders, Dymocks, and especially Angus & Robertson! Want to make MORE money? Carry more Romance and promote it. If you have it, we will buy.