mjj (flemmings) wrote,


I still think writers shouldn't keep blogs. Or that one shouldn't read their blogs if you intend to read their works. I will maintain with my last breath that a work by someone you know reads differently from a stranger's. Personal knowledge creates a subtext, if only in expectation, and you see where the writer's personality comes through in their prose, if it does. (Occasionally you see where it does even if you don't know them. I would never want to meet either Amis in the flesh, thank you very much.)

Further: the knowledge gained from a blog is random, filtered and skewed. It's nothing like the whole of the person, their presence, voice, mannerisms, and the way they'd actually talk to you an unknown stranger. But it has a spurious intimacy- there they are apparently talking personally and without constraint. One feels one knows the 'true' person. How can you not go looking for that person in their published works, or not read the works through the filter of bloggist as you know her?

And by and large, the human race being as it is, the person who creates is much smaller and much less satisfactory than the thing they create. Really I didn't want to know what Mozart was like, and am just as happy that I'll probably never find out how Shakespeare was. (No doubt he was a miserable self-absorbed bugger. It's the writerly default. RL Stevenson and Chekov were exceptions.) Yes, incandescens, I am echoing Antonia Forest again: "how queer it was that what people were like had no connection whatever to what they could actually do." But one feels it should be different; the bad-tempered or dismissive or self-absorbedly prolix (no no I'm not thinking of anyone in particular perish the thort) blog writer casts a personality miasma over the possibly quite wonderful fantasy they've produced, distinctly lessening one's enjoyment of it- supposing you conquer your distaste and read it anyway which in several cases I haven't. So, yes. Note to self: don't read writers' ljs.
Tags: fandom, writing

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