Nice Guys TM

Nice Guys TM is a phrase that's been circulating the internet for a while, and yet I don't think Nice Guys understand what it means. They think it means "a good guy that bitches girls don't want to sleep with because they're "too nice".  There's a lot of factors into why Nice Guys TM don't have romantic success, and why they've been "friendzoned". So, if you've ever said "Nice guys finish last" or "But why doesn't Allie like me? I'm such a nice guy!" this letter is for you. If you want to see a nice guy in action or you're unsure, go watch Pretty in Pink, and look at Ducky's behavior. That might clarify the definition. If you still think "but I'm a nice guy!" I'll refer you to this mangled, mangled quote- "Being nice is like being a lady. If you have to say it, you probably aren't.

 I can't be the only one who thinks she was better off with Andrew McCarthy, can I?

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Why I Hate Fifty Shades of Grey

It's very simple. Although it glorifies abuse, stigmatizes and misrepresents BDSM, and is just really, really, badly written, it's the fact that it's a rip off of Twilight that bothers me most. Now, Stephanie Meyer is not a good writer. But since her work is commercially available, and is under copyright, she desrves compensation if you read her book. I hate Twilight, but if you want to read something, the author should be compensated in some fashion. This is why I buy the books I snark rather than take them out of the library. If I rip into something, I might as well pay for it. Some people are unscrupulous, lack ethics but have a large desire for money

Enter E.L James. We all know FSoG started as Twilight fanfic. That's fine. It's not well written or innovative or interesting fanfic, but that's not new or even wrong. Fanfic gets a bad reputation as being for perverts or shitty writers, which is wrong. A lot of fanfic authors are young and not used to writing, so they're using established authors as a template for how to write. Fanfic can be like training wheels for young writers, and I think constructive criticism can be very useful for amateurs. They don't always respond well to criticism, but as they mature in their craft, they will get better, or wallow in anonymity. Since they aren't getting paid, and they're posting the story as an offshoot of the original, it's not plagiarism. It's annoying to read, sometimes, but not unethical. But FSoG is Twilight with the names and superficial details changed. If I were to do the exact same thing E.L James did, but in a creative writing class, I would be either expelled or given a zero. E.L James had a movie made out of her "work". It's theft. I think people are willing to overlook that aspect because there's more immediate trouble with E.L James' work- intimate partner violence, the lack of good BDSM representation, mainly. Those are important, and I could fill an entire blog with why those are bad, bad, things. There's also the fact that the source material isn't actually that good. If she were ripping off, say, Harry Potter, I suspect people would be more outraged, because how very dare she try to make money off a good book she didn't write. Legally, I suspect, the books are just different enough to qualify as completely separate and therefor not a copyright violation. But morally, it still is. This is why I won't buy or pay to watch Fifty Shades. It's plagiarism.

Another problem I have with the whole phenomenon is E.L James herself. Unlike Stephenie Meyer, who is largely innoffensive when she doesn't have a pen and paper in hand, E.L James is a bitch. Take the whole "Mara Wilson is a sad fuck" business. Mara Wilson was a accomplished child actor, went to a prestigious school, and now writes herself.  She is happy with her life, which is quite the accomplishment considering she was a child star. That's not sad, that's really really good. And Ms. Wilson didn't resort to a personal attack on E.L James. She just said "Hey, these books are problematic and promote abuse". So coming out with a "FUCK THAT BITCH, YEAH!" attack makes her look like the asshat, not Mara Wilson. Even more troubling, E.L James dismisses actual domestic violence victims who point out that her books are a steaming pile of abuse as trolls and encourages her fans to harrass them. E.L James is stuck in middle school socially, and she's 62 years old. Targeting people who are not only less powerful, but have also been fucked over by your shitty book is bad. Bad author. And if saying all that, calling a 62 year old version of Regina George out on her bullshit makes me a sad fuck, well, then I'm mighty proud to be a sad fuck.

And for those of you who can't separate abuse and BDSM, here's a handy chart.

Ana is not into BDSM. Ana often does not consent to, or revokes consent to, a lot of the things Christian wants. He bullies her into agreeing or accepting his desires. Even before a relationship, he tried to foist his BDSM and sexuality onto her in creepy, intrusive ways. He tries to bully her into liking or accepting something she doesn't want to. He's a bully. Sound familiar, E.L James?

Grammar Foibles

Metaphors vs Similes

I can't stand it when someone says "That's a good metaphor" when it's actually a simile. They're in the same family, but they are not interchangeable terms. That's like saying that you are interchangeable with your cousin. The second sentence is a metaphor, and the third sentence is a simile. And I have thought way too much about this.

Metaphor- a direct comparison between two things that are not the same. For instance, saying "He's a party pooper". Basically, you're saying that x=y. It's a more intense way of creating a paralell. In my example, we imagine a guy shitting all over your party. If we change it to "he's like a party pooper", that weakens the image and the association, because we're not fully committed to the image.

Simile- an indirect comparison between two things. In middle school, they called it the "like or as" rule. If the phrase includes the phrase "like a..." or "as if..." it's a simile. ie. "The nurse drew so much blood, it's like she was a vampire!" It's less intense than a metaphor, since it doesn't actually say x=y,  but rather x shares some attributes of y, but they aren't the same, per se. So, in my example, we attribute some traits with the comparison, such as blood sucking, and ignore other traits that don't make sense, like sparkling.

When should you use a simile or a metaphor?

I think it has a lot to do with how it sounds. It would be awkward to say "He's a pretty flower", when "He's as pretty as a flower" works better. If you want to describe multiple traits at once, use a metaphor, since you can chose an analogy that embodies a lot of the traits you're looking for. If you only want to focus on one specific trait, a simile works better.

While metaphors and similes are good, straight description can be the best thing to describe something, simply because it's direct. x=x, and y=y. So, remember, mix up using straight description with comparisons, but never, ever, mix your metaphors.


The Devil Wears... Part 3

I was right on schedule with this snark, and Word DELETED it before I could save it. I have no clue how that happened. Given how much I hate this book, the book’s copious references to “the Debol” and the random computer malfunction, I’m beginning to think my computer is possessed. This has the makings of some creepypasta shit, yo. Did I say creepypasta? I meant crappy. You will not break me, book. I hope you know that.

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The Devil Wears Prada Snark Part 1

The Devil Wears Prada. Her Name is Andy
Hi! This is my first snark in the actual wilds of LJ, and I’ve chosen The Devil Wears Prada, and you’ll see why after the cut. Red ink comments break down general things I didn’t like about the book, and then I go chapter by chapter. It’s a regular party!
Score: 32%

Why so low? Turn your paper over!

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What am I doing? Who am I?

Hi, random lurker! You've found a mostly empty journal that will soon (hopefully) be full of snarks, witticisms, and other good stuff, all on books. You can hit me up for any book, except Twilight. Fuck Twilight. Anyway, I'll be snarking books in what I like to call "English Paper format", with a percent grade, red ink comments on top of the page (or in my case, before the cut) and then nitty gritty nit picking.

Who am I? Let's start with my name. I am Dr. Maggie Moreau, and yes, I am related to the late, great, Dr. Moreau. I'm new to LJ, and if I screw up, don't just laugh, make sure I know so I can laugh at me too.