On writing and blogs


Sometimes, I think blogs are a bane rather than a boon to writing. Anyone can start a blog for free and write pretty much whatever they want. Often, you find blogs with atrocious writing–terrible grammar, bad spelling, illogical structures–and lots of gratuitous sex and violence. The worst part is that a great deal of this incredibly cringe-worthy writing gets published as fan fiction, simply because of the number of people who follow that kind of writing. I sometimes wonder if half of their fans are not followers because of some morbid fascination over how horrible the writing can be, or simply because it seems like something they understand–because the language sounds exactly like theirs, the stories things they wished they could have told themselves. Rather than uplift the average or below-average reader by exposing them to better literature, this class of literature celebrates and perpetuates ignorance by passing off as fiction. True, they will never ever be good enough to win prizes or recognition from prestigious award-giving bodies, but they might occasionally creep into the New York Times Bestseller list by virtue of selling a million copies or more. Even fine literature falls victim to marketing and crass commercialization.