Review policies, or How To Not Become A Stalking Author

K J Charles is definitely #YesAuthor and, once again, offers some good thoughts on a very bad situation.

KJ Charles

It hasn’t been an impressive time for the author community in the last few days. Kathleen Hale got a full page article in the Guardian (trigger warning for stalking, general warning for repellent disingenuousness and dishonesty) which allowed her to massively extend her stalking campaign against a reviewer. Another author one-upped Hale by travelling the length of Britain to hit a reviewer over the head with a wine bottle, leaving her needing stitches and pressing charges. What next? The British government selling arms to writing groups on the sly?

This behaviour, coming on top of far too many incidents of online and other harassment, has led to a lot of angry pushback, including a number of blogs holding review blackouts to make the point that authors need reviewers. I see reviewers saying things like, “I’m going to stop reviewing, it’s not worth the stress,” or “I’m only going to…

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Blythe Harris and the stalker

There You Have It

(Rough draft of what I’ve written for my own blog.  Comments?)

I read Laura Miller’s piece at Salon.com regarding the Harris/Hale incident and no, I don’t think it was balanced.  Far from it.

But since the only way to respond is to give Salon access to my friends list on Facebook, I guess I won’t be responding directly.  I’m too tired to figure out how to use my Google identity.

Identity is precisely the issue that Miller’s piece misses.

Miller gave Kathleen Hale specifically a distinct identity, mainly just by using her name and linking to the essay she got published in The Guardian.  Blythe Harris, regardless whether that’s her real name or not, was stripped of personhood by Miller.  She was just another nameless, dehumanized blogger instead of a reader and reviewer with a name and a style and fans.  She was lumped in with all the other bloggers…

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