Wednesday, March 11, 2015

Your Guide to Terrible Goodreads Comments

So, you'd like to write a terrible comment on Goodreads. Well, you're in luck! For years, I have been a contentious critic on that very site, and have written some its the most popularly unpopular reviews. I have received comments so terrible, so nonsensical, so patently self-loathing, so incoherent that they were most likely written by a super-intelligent dog who escaped from a science lab and has decided to take his revenge on humanity for making him the only creature trapped in the throes of an existential crisis despite the fact that he can reach his own groin with his tongue. 

At least for the rest of us, we can imagine that there is some wonderful thing that, if we were capable of it, would erase all self-doubt and disappointment--only he is cursed with the awareness that, despite having experienced the ultimate act of narcissistic pleasure, the hollow feeling remains. I have also received much worse comments, which could only have been the result of concentrated, multilayered human stupidity, but those are the rare ones--the vast majority of bad comments are made up of some combination of the following list.

Monday, March 9, 2015

I'm Back

Doré - Angelica Meets the Hermit
It's been more than a year I've been away--which is a lot of time to think things over, to sit and stew, to write numerous drafts of reviews and posts that just end up sitting in the vault, unread. At first it was nice to be away, to have a break--it was like graduation all over again: suddenly, no one's waiting for me to write papers, nor am I waiting for a response. It's peaceful, but there's still that itch in the back of the mind, the old voice, the old habit, continuing on no matter how you ignore it.

I do want to thank all the people who have supported me, all along--even without any response from me, the comments keep rolling in, the friend requests show up fresh in my inbox each day, and the (mostly) kind and supportive messages are as numerous as ever. It reminds me that I have not only a responsibility to myself, but also to my work, to the conversations I've started that are still going on out there--but it turns out you can't just come back from nowhere, not that easily, and especially not when the reason you left hasn't gotten any better.