These were posts in my personal blog, I maintain on another private site, these were written for friends and followers upon Michael Jackson's death, and all the controversy that followed. After reading comments and watching interviews. These were simply my personal thoughts on all that was being said, and what was going on at that time......June 2009 to September 2009. And a quick thought today.

*June 30, 2009......Michael Jackson.

So much has been reported on him this past week, and with his passing so much more to seems as if every little thing has to be delved into, and all those who opine, on his life......most know very little of the truth, as is true of myself....I know very little.....

There are those who feel the need to say negative, and there are those who feel the need to defend....I do feel the need to give one important opinion of my own.....

And that would be, I really know nothing about his personal life, I only know what has been in the press and tabloid press, [notice I separate the two, as they are two very different entities in my mind, though the line can blur, with all the reality TV craze,] I know I enjoyed his talent as a singer and his dancing. He had some of the greatest videos, if not thee greatest videos. He seemed to care about children, and had a charitable side. And he influenced several generations through his actions.

I also know I have never been around him personally, though once I was in the same room with him, not the same as knowing him, so for me to make judgment on what he did behind closed doors would be an egregious error on my part, cause it would simply be hearsay or in laymens terms, a bunch of crap.

I am under the impression, that because the reports of celebrities is seen on a daily basis, even on the nightly "News" that they become almost as if they are a part of your life almost friend-like, and the line that separates the reality from the fiction, becomes blurred for many, so they are unable to come to the thinking process of , they really know nothing, it is all rumor, innuendo and speculations.....and so the judgments begin.

Me, I don't know.....I hope not, but if it ever comes to light and it is not positive, I can only empathize for those involved, and vice versa, I can only have belated empathy, for the accused. So with that said, I am sad to know we have lost a great talent, and I am sure he was a true friend to many. And of course his beloved family and children, For them I offer my condolences, and prayers.

*July 7, 2009....The Human Being, The Father, Behind The Persona....

"I just wanted to say ... ever since I was born, Daddy has been the best father you could ever imagine. And I just wanted to say I love him — so much," said Jackson's 11-year-old daughter, Paris-Michael.

So many things have been said about Michael Jackson, so many who profess to have known him.......and many of us who grew up with his musical talent, that we have felt close to him ourselves.......But today, beyond the persona, the rumors, the tabloids and the reputation........came forth, the Real Person.......even if only after his passing do we as public get a glimpse of the more human was a lasting impression we will not forget. I for one never will, cause I for one can relate to the most simplistic human emotion of a daughter losing her father, Much too soon.

I believe it is something she, Paris, will have to carry with her, for a lifetime, till she meets his smile once more. It is the common human factor of grief, and compassion that has made this family real to the public. Rather than an anomaly. Right at the moment that Paris spoke, I saw, Aunts and Uncles, Brothers and Sisters, Mothers and Fathers.....I did not see the Jackson's. I did see grief struck people, that needed one another to get through a most difficult time, with so many more to come.

There will be birthdays that will pass without celebration, holidays without emotions, other than to think, cry and feel empty....and the total disbelief, it has really happened.

The family will have days when something good has happened and they will start to make a call or say I should send this to Michael, and with a split second, know the reality, that he, Michael, is not there.....And his children, will go without the hugs and held hands and the smiling face of the man they called Daddy or Dad. The one person they could go to anytime and talk to about anything.....the one that could lift their spirits, Or pick them up when they fell down.....just Dad. Just Dad.

He was not the "King of Pop" to his family, he was a Son, a Brother, a Uncle and a Father. He was in fact a Human Being with human feelings and human emotions....I would not wish his life on anyone, and I prayed for it to be better for him. In-fact, his mortality has ended, but his immortal image will forever be burned into the minds of his admires and adversaries.

I, for one, will, smile when I hear his music, and will enjoy singing his songs on a Friday or Saturday night when I go out.....I've grown up loving the persona of him, and that is what made me feel close. He was a great part of my childhood, and into my adult years.

That will always be there for me. That is what makes it so easy for me to go on with my keep the smile, he so badly wanted.

The emotional thought that went through my mind when a "fan" yelled out, "I love you Janet." during the we have zero empathy and compassion for the family, have we forgotten they are in the grieving process.

So much has been speculated about Michael Jackson's death, and still the rumors and innuendo persist.....And yet they have to put on a public face and eat the emotions, cause if not, it will just turn into more gossip.....

Soon, the reality of his death and his burial will hit many more, and the raw feelings and emotions will emerge....whether you were a fan or not....The words of a child, his beloved child, will strike your heart....and whatever you do to grieve, sing, dance or cry. Imagine what his family feels and say a prayer....then hold your family tight.

God Bless, to you, and my deepest condolences to those who mourn him personally.

*September 26, 2009.......Broken

I was watching the Michael Jackson, Rabbi Shmuley interviews/ therapy sessions.

It was a sad story going on and somewhat odd, but then what did I expect... I seems as though there will never be a time for rest, for Michael Jackson, or for the public for that matter...I know many that are just, for lack of a better phrase, over loaded on Michael Jackson. I for one find a lot to be interesting, and some just exploitation...this borders..... It seemed to be too private to be aired, yet at the same time it did paint an interesting side of the story....a sad and sorrowful side. The child/man, afraid to grow old....I wondered to myself then out-loud. Maybe the fear he had, was of growing older and becoming all he loathed...The loss of innocence....I really don't know, just a thought.

But in the end, I also wondered out-loud....No matter how much he had, the money, fame and fans....they could not fix the kind of "Broke" he became.

So Sad, So Sad.....Peace be with you, M.J.

* June 25, 2010

In the end, it was a shock to so many. A passing that is a marker in history to all that adored him.....Family, Friends and Fans. That shared emotion. And still somehow, sometimes, because of all the press, it feels somewhat, unreal one year later.


MsGrant June 25, 2010 @ 10:21 p.m.

Good god, thought-filled! I wanted to be one of those that welcomed a well-written prose person to the blogs. But, much as I try, your writing sucks. STOP BEING SO HAPLESS!! As much as you think you are pretty and that is what is going to give you the 500 you are going for, don't write about how great you are as a wife/daughter/fan. No one cares!!!


CuddleFish June 25, 2010 @ 10:49 p.m.

Please take note: CuddleFish did not write the above post, I repeat, CuddleFish did not write the above post.


MsGrant June 26, 2010 @ 8:57 a.m.

Yes, people care. The ones that hate the slaughter of the written word. We all make mistakes, but really. Just take a couple of classes in sentence construction. You obviously want people to read your writing, so make it more readable. If you are going to be the "star" of your blogs, try humanizing yourself rather than trying to come across as so "precious". The depth you are aiming for is coming across as schlock.


"I believe it is something she, Paris, will have to carry with her, for a lifetime, till she meets his smile once more."

I think I can honestly say that no one with better things to do really wants to continue to fuel the Michael Jackson saga. So, to answer your question with regard to your blog subject, no.


Grasca June 26, 2010 @ 10:29 a.m.

What do you mean by "the 500 you are going for ?"


nan shartel June 26, 2010 @ 10:53 a.m.


did Dr Peanut tell u to tell her that????


CuddleFish June 26, 2010 @ 10:55 a.m.

I'm sure Dr. Peanut's language was much more to the point, nan! :)

Grasca, MsG is referring to the five hundred bucks bloggers win if their post is selected for blog of the month. :)


nan shartel June 26, 2010 @ 10:56 a.m.

would it help if she used those little i do

hahahahahahahahahahahahahahahahaha...i'm such a f***in' brat!!!


nan shartel June 26, 2010 @ 11:01 a.m.

i kinda like this writer..yeah she's vanilla thru and thru...but vanilla is nice once and a while

now u get her on a van with William Shatner and who knows what may happen!!!!!


CuddleFish June 26, 2010 @ 11:11 a.m.

Let me say this: It would take a much more talented writer than this writer to sum up Michael's life. I posted a thread about Michael and didn't even attempt to add anything, just let his talent speak for itself.

This writer may be filled with thoughts, and filled with the need to share those thoughts, but those thoughts are uninteresting, unimaginative, uninspiring, insipid, dull, boring. With the exception of the one about her father and their relationship, which was vivid and filled with unique details. That post attempts to meet the requirements posted in the Brizz thread, Write like it's the last thing you will ever write.

MsGrant is uniquely qualified to critique bloggers, as not only is she an excellent writer/blogger herself, she reads the posts of other bloggers here. This writer apparently hasn't bothered herself since there are no adds from her on any of the threads. This is a trait that is especially annoying when the writer is clearly trying to draw attention to him/herself, because it makes their writing all the more deficient and self-centered by contrast. Us regulars know which writers really got the goods.

I think this writer has the capability of being a much better writer and blogger -- sometimes I catch it in the tone, or a bit of observation, and if I try to hear her writing in her voice, it has its charm. But the average reader is not going to try as hard as those of us who do this for a spiritual living.

We want to support you, you have to give us something to support. Good luck with your work.


nan shartel June 26, 2010 @ 11:18 a.m.

in that case Cuddlefish..disregard everything i had to say


SDaniels June 26, 2010 @ 11:28 a.m.

Nan, you were born to rule the world, I swear. Just let Grant run the dept of State.

AG could run the dept of Animal Welfare...well, I will let you fill your cabinet as you wish, your Excellency!

Just don't forget to shower artists and writers with gold--and put me personally on a sizeable pension to write whatever I want! ;)

Not sure if anyone wants my take, and I tend to keep my sword mostly sheathed on such matters around here, but since Grant seized the oracle of truth, here I am to support.

Grant's conclusions about this blog are dead on, if you have studied writing to any degree, of any genre. This piece is the equivalent of a Hallmark card, written vaguely, like someone writing with one hand and searching for a lost piece of mail with the other. Schlocky sentiment cuts through the laziness here and there like a vein of sudden, bad self-consciousness.


"That will always be there for me. That is what makes it so easy for me to go on with my keep the smile, he so badly wanted."

If you want to write to the heart of what people really desire, ask yourself: Is it a smile they are after? Or could there be something a little funkier, a little less bland, a little more tied to a specific persona?

For example: If one wanted to write something about MJ, it could take the form of an inner monologue about missing his dead chimp, who let him live out his Sunset Blvd fantasy. From what I've heard, it makes much more sense that what MJ wanted so badly, was to be a beautiful girl or woman. Snow White, Diana Ross, Liz Taylor, --in that order, most likely. More interesting stuff, relating to dolls, makeup, children, Disney... Of course, that is just one approach, and ideas abound. The thing is to keep the audience interested.

For what it's worth, I think this writer is capable of it--she started out well with the other blog I wrote, which seemed to be an honest accounting of one's relationship with a partner.

However, what I have read since tends to cast it all in an insincere light, as Grant pointed out.

I'll end with something upon which we can all surely agree: --If it were only as easy to write as it were to produce ideas...;)


SDaniels June 26, 2010 @ 11:34 a.m.

Ah ha, looks like CF is afoot, and we are in essential agreement, with the exception of:

"That post attempts to meet the requirements posted in the Brizz thread, Write like it's the last thing you will ever write."

Brizz is the last chap from whom I'd take advice on writing. Case in point, all of the "last thing I'll ever write" blogs he's ever written. Fulla schlock, with a gem here and there.


CuddleFish June 26, 2010 @ 11:35 a.m.

I wanna be the Secretary of Defense, nan!


SDaniels June 26, 2010 @ 11:37 a.m.

Correction to # 13:

"For what it's worth, I think this writer is capable of it--she started out well with the other blog I wrote,"

should read:

started out well with another other blog SHE wrote,"

Hmmm. Freudian slip betraying self-critique? Yep. Apply it to meself, too. :)


CuddleFish June 26, 2010 @ 11:38 a.m.

I said Brizz posted the advice, I didn't say he followed it! ;)


SDaniels June 26, 2010 @ 11:38 a.m.

re: #15: Good god, that is the LAST position I would give you, CF. ;)


CuddleFish June 26, 2010 @ 11:39 a.m.

started out well with another other blog SHE wrote

??? Try again, hun!!!! xxxx


CuddleFish June 26, 2010 @ 11:40 a.m.

Girl, I would rock our world!!!



SDaniels June 26, 2010 @ 11:41 a.m.

Oh man, "RamboFish" is really your name. THAT is your name.


CuddleFish June 26, 2010 @ 11:44 a.m.

I was born to rock'n'roll!!!! ROFLMAO!!!!! :))


CuddleFish June 26, 2010 @ 11:51 a.m.

in that case Cuddlefish..disregard everything i had to say

By nan 11:18 a.m., Jun 26, 2010

I would never disregard what you have to say, nan. This writer might not realize it this moment, but she has been given a gift. Extraordinary writers like MsGrant and SDaniels and yourself taking the time to critique her body of work, that's priceless. If this writer understands and appreciates it for what it is and to its full extent, her writing will surely improve.


SurfPuppy619 June 26, 2010 @ 12:18 p.m.

Oh man, "RamboFish" is really your name. THAT is your name

Coolest handle ever!!


CuddleFish June 26, 2010 @ 12:20 p.m.

RamboFish, Secretary of Defense --

E-ticket ride, baby!!!


MsGrant June 26, 2010 @ 12:29 p.m.

Rambofish!! I love it!! I just watched a few minutes of First Blood the other day - You drew first blood!!!

I have been guilty of schlock and preciousness and self-centered writing many times, and sometimes when I go back and read some of my older essays I cringe. It takes time and effort to write something worth reading and I'm not sure if Lifetime Television for Women is a style that serious writers enjoy. I mean, even Harlequin introduced a little raunch into their genre with their steamier line. Sepia-toned brushstrokes are dishonest. Not everything is precious. Grit, honesty, personal experience. These are the things that bring a story to life.

I could be wrong. I've been known to be wrong.


CuddleFish June 26, 2010 @ 12:46 p.m.

I think what she's trying to go for here is simplicity. Huge difference between that and the baby food she's feeding us.


Grasca June 26, 2010 @ 1:25 p.m.

Can I be the Secretary of Defense ? Or a five star general with no loose lips ? We need order here on the Blogarossa. I think it takes courage to post a story or a blog so I would be supportive of that endeavor even if it is not to my taste. Constructive criticism is never mean spirited in my humble opinion.


MsGrant June 26, 2010 @ 1:26 p.m.

There is an attempt at a certain style, that being one of....thoughts, exemplified by the .....hence, the name of the blog.

If it is indeed the author's intent to portray her essay as thoughts, then the liberal over-use of (poorly placed) commas is unnecessary.

I think this author definitely has potential.


SDaniels June 26, 2010 @ 2:56 p.m.

re: #26

"I have been guilty of schlock and preciousness and self-centered writing many times, and sometimes when I go back and read some of my older essays I cringe."

Hey! Who hasn't? And perhaps when we see it still, we cringe--remembering? Judging the author by presumed age, as if to say, you should be over this stage by now? We are human, so yes. But it is never personal in the sense of hating on the author; it's always about their work.

"It takes time and effort to write something worth reading and I'm not sure if Lifetime Television for Women is a style that serious writers enjoy."

Nope. ;) --Unless one's looking into Lifetime programming to discover some cultural trend.

"I mean, even Harlequin introduced a little raunch into their genre with their steamier line."

Oh yeah? I would have dug that at age 12, last time I read one of those.

"Sepia-toned brushstrokes are dishonest. Not everything is precious. Grit, honesty, personal experience. These are the things that bring a story to life."

So beautifully put! Grant is on the refriedgringo side of it, then. Grit, honesty, personal experience.

I would add that a story can be brought to life by drowsy, distanced artifice, and outright lies. A matter of aesthetic preference.

re: #28: Grasca wrote:

"I think it takes courage to post a story or a blog so I would be supportive of that endeavor even if it is not to my taste. Constructive criticism is never mean spirited in my humble opinion."

Absolutely on both points, Grasca--and don't take this wrongly, but this is the opinion with which people invariably back out of a discussion of aesthetics. We try to affirm that criticism is supposed to be constructive, but become uncomfortable when it has other aims, that are not necessarily to enlighten the author. We are talking about literary criticism, critique, not a wagging of the finger and an opinion. I'm coming from a couple of decades of thought and training on the matter, and critiquing a work just to wag the finger at someone? Boring. There is just too much to do.

In the world I spent years of my life in, criticism is most often performed over a dead writer's work, or an absent writer's work. I have only performed criticism to a live author once, and she was hesitant, but grew to be appreciative by the end of it. That is the only author's signature on a book that means anything to me ;)

Lit crit gets a bad name for no reason, for misunderstanding, for fear, for intimidation, and it's such a shame. I am always glad to hear of book clubs where "regular" folk gather to discuss literature or film, and I hope that they eventually, if not at first, learn to go for the jugular.

Criticism can be like the delicate carving up of an animal, a fish--with no more offense to the fish than meat eaters intend; in other words, none.


SDaniels June 26, 2010 @ 2:59 p.m.


It's about the "truth," defined as whatever seems to sum up or define some piece of writing. Case in point, here is my final word on this blog, and I'll tell you what bothers me most about it. Sure, it's in diary form, so there is a certain looseness of thought to be expected. But there is no point, and we are told there is a point--here:

"I do feel the need to give one important opinion of my own.....

And that would be, I really know nothing about his personal life, I only know what has been in the press and tabloid press,"

...and so on and so on, paragraph after paragraph, until the end where we find:

"with that said."

What was the point? What was said?

With that, impatience that has been building turns to exasperation. Why did I waste my time? Etc., and hence Grant's cute little explosion. :)


David Dodd June 26, 2010 @ 4:23 p.m.

Points to ponder or ignore:

Writers are story tellers, and good writers are good story tellers. This doesn't mean that a good writer always tells a good story, nor that a good story teller always writes well. Worse thing that can happen is when a good writer writes a bad story poorly. This happens to everyone. Kurt Vonnegut's very last novel was a poor story, poorly written. So it goes. I'll remember him for everything that preceded that effort.

I can't get into much written about a dead celebrity unless there is some sort of literary device at work in comparison to, say, a relevant event in the life of the narrarator or a character in the story; be it some pathetic fallacy or deus ex machina or perhaps even a structural conceit, the latter of which this story likely tried for and didn't quite succeed.

And the ellipse usage is overdone and incorrect, literary license aside (three dots are enough!), as any excessive usage of puncuation is usually nothing more than a distraction. So, I didn't care for this entry - as SD points out, I want it down and dirty, just tell me a story and structure it cleverly and I'm your biggest fan.

But I like the author. I like much of her previous stuff. I would guess that Grant's frustration is because she does as well. And I look forward to her next entry.


Grasca June 26, 2010 @ 5:38 p.m.

Point well taken about criticism as it relates to a live author. My background involves English literature so I am familiar with the mechanics of literary criticism. I thought it might be best to dial back some of the comments so the person would not be fearful to continue. Writing is personal in many respects. You hate to tinker with someone's ego in these areas when the person is still alive to "receive" the criticism.


thestoryteller June 26, 2010 @ 6:24 p.m.


Real writers, meaning successful ones, never criticize another's work because they know how hard it is to be good. The coven of evil witches who dominate this site haven't done all that well when it comes to collecting the 500 themselves. They tend to fixate on it because they are at a lost as to how to get it consistently. Poor things, they have no where else to go to feel important.

Your thoughts are your own. You own them and are entitled to them. If you write to please yourself and no one else, it will take you further than any of these bitches will ever go.


Grasca June 26, 2010 @ 6:43 p.m.

What is this 500 that everyone references ? I am not part of an evil coven and want to encourage, not discourage, anyone who has the courage to contribute.


CuddleFish June 26, 2010 @ 6:50 p.m.

Grasca, I explained before, one blog thread gets selected each month on the Reader website as the winner of the Blog of the Month contest, and that writer wins $500.

As nan has said, to those of us who blog here regularly, the money is unimportant. Everyone knows there are bestselling authors who are financially successful. Does that make them great writers? If money is your definition of success, then sure. :)


David Dodd June 26, 2010 @ 7:17 p.m.

Mindy: The cash prize is not necessarily validation. Criticism is important, especially for blog writers. Blog entries generally can't be perceived as having some axe to grind, so the criticism is usually more helpful. Writers can submit stories to the Reader (City Lights, Cover Story, et. al.) if they are after cash, the Reader pays well for a weekly and they seem to enjoy publishing a diverse array of stories.

Of the three blog entries I've left up, the one that won the most cash was not my best effort, it simply caught someone's eye. The Reader was not interested in another entry that garnered so much attention that it was copied into various other sites, where it actually cost me publication in another publication that was otherwise interested. It isn't about the five-hundred clams. In my opinion the Reader simply enjoys rewarding those that contribute, which is great. And if msjlee keeps on blogging, she'll likely win a prize for something she least likely expects. But the fact that she contributes is the thing. And, the criticism can be nothing less than helpful.


Grasca June 26, 2010 @ 7:18 p.m.

Thanks, Fish, I missed the explanation and thought maybe it was 500 thumbs up responses. Now I know the magic of $500.


CuddleFish June 26, 2010 @ 7:36 p.m.

If you click on the contest page, Grasca, you can see the month by month winners. Some months have been pretty disappointing. Clearly, the best writing doesn't always win. Then there are the winning blog entries that are pure fiction passed off as actual events. The Reader really seems to have no standard beyond what jayallen repeats ad nauseum, that the writing "must engage the reader." It's all about the bottom line, essentially. Apparently for some writers, as well.


thestoryteller June 26, 2010 @ 8:06 p.m.

Refried: It does take courage to post here. Remember how timid Magics was? People should be encouraged and unless someone is successful, they have no business criticizing other prople's work, as if they are authorites. This is not the place for it, and I don't think Ms. Grant and Cuddlefish are people who should be talking. Their writing isn't that good.

People who are unsuccessful financially always say the money isn't important, and if these self-proclaimed writing authorities don't like the stories that were chosen as winners, they have only themselves to blame because they didn't write anything better for that month.

I laugh at the bloggers on here because, despite their education, they know very little about what makes good writing. They seem to think that if they pace it slow enough, use heavy enough language and bore the crap out of the readers, they are literary and above everyone else. The best book I ever read was written by an uneducated woman who lived in the slums of Brazil. She won a Pulitzer, btw.

Punctuation, etc. is b.s. as far as editors are concerned. They are after a good story.

I'm well aware of how to make money from the Reader, as I've made quite a bit of it.


CuddleFish June 26, 2010 @ 8:26 p.m.

"I don't think Ms. Grant and Cuddlefish are people who should be talking. Their writing isn't that good."

Am losing the will to live.


David Dodd June 26, 2010 @ 8:39 p.m.

Well, two things I guess. There is a duality, in that the Reader is ostensibly a journalistic publication, printing mostly journalism. Many bloggers write in literary form, so there is a distinct separation. And, Ms. Grant is a good writer in my opinion, but I'll leave you to your own, I reckon we all have our own likes and dislikes. Anyway, writing isn't going to make many people a living these days unless they are diverse, and that includes having the capability and the desire to write in both forms.

The journalistic form here is often confused with the literary form in the comments section. For example, some people often refer to stringer stories as blogs. This is entirely inaccurate. And, they attempt to criticize a stringer story as they would a blogger. This is naive. Most bloggers write in literary form. Stringers always write in journalistic form.

But, in so far as my opinion of punctuation and so on, I will politely disagree with the advice that John Brizzolara received when he began to write for the Reader. When you write, write as though the entire world will see it, not as though it will be the last thing that you write. There is a difference. Hopefully, the last thing I ever write will never be read.

I do not enjoy writing as a journalist. I do it anyway sometimes, because people are more willing to pay me for counting the number of shells to took to kill someone that they are willing to pay me to recount the life of the deceased. No one will criticize me if I get the count of the shells wrong, but if I fail to represent the essence of the life of the person who died, I will be called to task. And, deservedly so.

In that respect, validation and money are quite incongruent.


MsGrant June 26, 2010 @ 9:26 p.m.

Thanks, refried. I don't do it for the money. I never even considered that an option. Mindy, what can I say? You hate us. Lucky us.


Grasca June 26, 2010 @ 9:29 p.m.

I have to admire stringers who write non fiction which is really fiction because of their poor reporting skills and bias. At least the Reader does not discriminate and generally publishes these offerings without a warning label.

Successful writers have agents and contracts and some ISBN credits.


Robert Johnston June 26, 2010 @ 9:38 p.m.

Hey, now!

1) Though I did not care much for MJ's musical output (My favorite MJ song was "Beat It," btw), and felt that he made himself a target for every Perez Hilton wannabe with access to a blogsite (ee-yuk-upchuck) by his public behavior? The man's popularity--even after his demise--speaks for itself.

In his case: Let The Music Do The Talking! If you listen, the meaning of the story of the King of Pop will unfold...both the triumphant and the tragic.

2) When I was told that my first entry regarding Vista Ranch had enriched me by $250, I thought that the caller-in-question was either drunk off their gleuts...or was playing an especially cruel prank on me. After all, my "time-on-blog" was less than one year.

It was when I saw the check in my mailbox that I knew that it was for-real, but also a dream had come true. I was good enough to gain more than "kind words" for my writing.

3) MsJlee--First, welcome aboard the good ship "SD Reader Blogsite." Second, the only way to hone your skills is through constant writing (I learned that in HS Junior english class). So, just keep on writing and submitting. Practice not only makes perfect, but keeps the fire of desire stoked and your tools sharpened! If you have the tools, talent, desire, and must exercise them to keep them functional!



MsGrant June 26, 2010 @ 9:58 p.m.

Am I the only one here that knows that a thought-filled wife is the storyteller? I mean, really, she does not defend unless her own turf is being pissed on.


David Dodd June 26, 2010 @ 10:01 p.m.

Oh, and one more thing: Note that CERTAIN commenters in here have an axe to grind against a stringer who writes CERTAIN things about them. Not naming names or BREAKING THE MAGIC TOS, but, you know, keep that in mind, y'all. Said commentors also go to no uncertain lengths to bring this up in every comment thread they enter, which is technically a violation of the TOS as set forth: "We prohibit profanity, libel, spam, racial epithets, and the HARASSMENT AND ABUSE OF OTHERS [caps mine].

However, the Reader apparently enforces this as they see fit. Meanwhile, cowards hide behind their aliases. Y'all judge it on your own.


David Dodd June 26, 2010 @ 10:03 p.m.

Could be, Ms. Grant, but so long as she doesn't tell me, then I'm fine with it. Lie to me, but make it good enough to believe ;)


SDaniels June 26, 2010 @ 10:09 p.m.

"Successful writers have agents and contracts and some ISBN credits."

Grasca, I'm suddenly, ironically glad that is not true, as I've had the honor to read plenty of unpublished authors who rocked, and knocked, but didn't get in. Who do you think is able to publish and reward them all, much less clamor in to represent?*

*This is a serious question. Cue refried, to give us some facts and stats on paucity of valid publishing opportunities. ;)


David Dodd June 26, 2010 @ 10:27 p.m.

Loaded full of great stuff, as usual, SD.

First, most "successful" writers have agents after the fact. Most marginally successful writers trust their agents for everything, and most agents are unsuccessful writers, hence, the Catch-22. I do not have an agent, and I won't need one until I submit a novel to a publisher. I'm certain that a lay person can pull up 1,000 blog entries from agents about how writers need an agent. It isn't true. I read these agent blogs daily (love the agents, but they're after the 15%, after all). To all writers: Get an agent once you have a contract offered, then you'll need one. Otherwise, just write, and submit. Agents are essential to negotiate a contract.

Second, most savvy authors have multiple nom de plume-age, including yours truly, especially if we choose to write genre, and no, we're not coming clean, we owe the world nothing.

Last: The publishing world (especially in book form) is in limbo, really seriously screwed. Everyone is scared, publishers, agents, and so on. Authors are left cold. What you will be seeing in the next decade is probably the safe stuff; commercial, popular successful genre, and so on. Not much in the true literary sense.

Otherwise, we publish in magazines and don't brag about it because it doesn't pay much and we're not proud of it.

That's my take on it.


SDaniels June 26, 2010 @ 10:42 p.m.

To all writers: Get an agent once you have a contract offered, then you'll need one. Otherwise, just write, and submit. Agents are essential to negotiate a contract.

Bingo! That's definitely true from what I have observed, not having attempted to publish anything for oh, fifteen years.

They also serve who only Submit and wait... ;)


"The journalistic form here is often confused with the literary form in the comments section. For example, some people often refer to stringer stories as blogs. This is entirely inaccurate. And, they attempt to criticize a stringer story as they would a blogger. This is naive. Most bloggers write in literary form. Stringers always write in journalistic form."

Right on. Couldn't agree more. But I have to say that I enjoy the confusion of boundaries (of all kinds) in the stringers, however serious the issue of lazy reportage, as has been discussed frequently on this site--Although, if their work isn't of consequence, then why we worry is not clear, other than the issue over labeling the pieces as journalism or "community contributors" or "stringers," etc. Not that I want to start that convo up again ;)


David Dodd June 26, 2010 @ 10:44 p.m.

Oh, and as for ISBN credits, when that pays a month's rent, I'll care. Otherwise, call me Biff Jackson. Or Ralph Smith. Or whatever. ISBN is only important to Profs who publish and have to prove it in order to change schools.


MsGrant June 26, 2010 @ 11:27 p.m.

In the high school halls, in the shopping malls, be cool or be cast out.....


David Dodd June 27, 2010 @ 1:43 a.m.

That's my favorite Rush tune, Ms. Grant. Subdivisions. I wuz never one of the kool kids. Didn't take me long to not care one bit. Yet, it's funny how over thirty years later, my old high school chums seem to like me okay. And some people say there is no such thing as living karma!


msjlee June 27, 2010 @ 5:55 a.m.

Hey All, How are you this Sunday? Hope all is well. I just got back home and finally turned on my puter. First off, Thanks to those who have welcomed me. Much appreciated. And to those who have critiqued in a teacher student kind of way. Much appreciated. Very much respected. And I learned a couple things.

*The reason I started blogging here is, someone from the Reader emailed me and said I should blog a story I had written. I never added that particular article, because it was no longer needed. The content was about a missing child.

To those who criticized blatantly...If you would like to know more about me in depth, so that I may "Humanize myself." Why don't you just ask...I will give you a run down. But forgive me if I come off self-centered or precious. (insert sarcastic grin here.) I guess I'm not quite sure how to write about what I think or about myself, without including myself. I suppose I will have to figure that one out. :)

(note those darned little dots, but only in threes.wink) Yes, I have a sense of humor. Obviously.

As far as writing. I had one class in 9th grade. One semester. And yes, I am sure I use those little dots and commas way too much and my punctuation is terrible.. But if I was going for a prize or publication, I'm thinking, ummmm, editor. But Thanks for cluing me in about the cash. Who knew. Don't worry, I don't expect to get rich. I'm a realist about my talents. Or in some peoples opinions, lack there of. lol.

I may be a sloppy writer, it is likely cause I write what comes to mind and rarely do I embellish or correct. And am guilty of empathetic writing. So forgive me my literary sins. I will try not to be a lazy writer.

I would do 5 "Hail Marys" but I'm not Catholic.

No matter, I will keep writing. Likely the way I do now, without too many little dots. (that's a habit even I would like to break.) Whether you love my writing or hate it. I think it has impressed upon your mind. And probably, in some cases, burned away a couple brain cells to boot. I say this in humor, not to offend.

As a post note: Those Hallmark writers make big money. I have a friend who writes for that company. Maybe I missed my calling. :)

Peace be with you, J.


Grasca June 27, 2010 @ 6:35 a.m.

A author can always opt for a vanity press publication.


Grasca June 27, 2010 @ 6:51 a.m.

ISBN is far more than some on this blog would care to admit.

Writing for sport is one thing but writing for money is another. Perhaps there are 2 groups here ?

Some on this site have indicated that their goal is to have their novel published.

As far as I know, there are 2 ways - agent and publisher or self publication via a vanity press. I suppose one could make copies of their work and hand it out on street corners ? or in bars ? or in churches ? One author's mother hounded publishers after her son's death and was successful in securing publication of his novel. I suppose that is yet another option.

Stringers on this site often use 2 forms in one submission and mix the journalistic genre and style (at least as I was taught in my journalism classes) with fiction. This is where things get sticky in my opinion.

Op Ed is one thing but pure reporting of what happened is another.

Comprendre ?

Also, as has been clarified before by Admin, a stringer is not staff but rather a hopeful contributor and should never pretend to be a reporter with press credentials.


Grasca June 27, 2010 @ 6:55 a.m.

What a mother did for her son in terms of getting his work published ISBN number and all.


thestoryteller June 27, 2010 @ 11:46 a.m.

I don't have an agent, and I'm doing quite well. I think people who sling such advice should do so when they are on the best seller list, and not just hoping to convince people they are good enough to be.

msjlee: This isn't about your writing, hon. This is about the fact that Ms. Grant is getting older and losing her looks. Cuddlefish never had the looks to begin with. I'm sure a pretty girl like you met up with the same type of girls in high school. There's a reason they both like cats--YEOW!

I love your post. You're my favorite writer on the site.

P.S. Stephen J. Cannell is quite successful as a writer, and to my knowledge, he isn't literary or journalistic. He writes T.V. shows in addition to books, and owns a production company.


CuddleFish June 27, 2010 @ 11:54 a.m.

No talent, and no looks.

Am definitely losing the will to live.


Robert Johnston June 27, 2010 @ 12:30 p.m.

Grasca: Any writer with the financial savvy Our Creator gave us knows that publishing via vanity press is a losing propsition in the extreme. First, you have to pony up the money to the publisher...a lot of money! Fees between $10,000-20,000(US) are not unheard of for a "manuscript" about 300-400pp in length.

Second: What do you get for your investment? The Cloth-covered shaft in the back! First off, most bookstores will not stock anything published by a vanity press. The VPs may send out the catalogues--but more often than not, they end up round-filed upon receipt.

Second-Two: The quality of the finished product is, shall we say, unsalable. From the binding, to the quality of the paper and print...the tome-in-question is below commercial standard. Another reason why bookstores will not stock VP-produced tomes.

Third-Return On Investment. You pay big bucks to the VP to get that book published, hoping to recoup your investment (or even make a profit) in royalty checks.


A truism about using the VP route is that you will not break even financially. More often than not--your losses might drive you out of writing altogether. Most of the VP "sales" come directly from the VP-in-question's catalouge...and if your typical bookstore won't stock VP-produced books? Need I say more?

The reason that Vanity Presses (Vantage Books is the biggest one.) make plenty of cash is that they take most any manuscript sent to them, then milk the author-in-question out of thousands of dollars up front for sub-standard-and-unsalable work.

Oh, did I mention that these companies prefer the term "Subsidy Publishing" rather than Vanity Press now? New name, same game...and it's the author who puts their trust in such houses of the unholy that gets played for all they are worth. That is why the Better Business Bureau has never had a Vanity Press as a member...for very long, anyway.

Know this: A legit publisher is supposed to pay YOU--not the other way around--to publish your book. Better to get an agent or go it alone than use a Vanity Press. After all, the rejection slips you get make for great barbecue tinder!



nan shartel June 27, 2010 @ 12:34 p.m.

there r no circumstances under which i will be willing to give up my dots!!!!

do u hear me??!!!


absolutely none!!!

not even to get my great friend Refried to read me!!!

not to win $500 dollar and not go directly to jail!!!

so there!!!!!!!!!!


nan shartel June 27, 2010 @ 12:53 p.m.

ya shoudn'a said those mean things about Rambofish and Grantie "thestoryteller"

that's resorting to personal defamation to eschew the attitudes of the readers here...and it's a that we have been advised by an anonymous shopper that Rambofish IS BEAUTIFUL!!!

and Grantie can still attract a handsome older slighty puffy man with the best of them(ie: William Shatner who still hasn't stopped e-mailing her daily)

i'm nearly ready for a dirt nap...and altho i can't write worth a dang i'm hell on wheels in a bikini!!!


msjlee will be given all the freedom she desires to write "good bad or ugly" without her eyes being burned out

auntie G can be secretary of defense

rambofish can be secretary of war

ms grant can be secretary of state but only with the help of Dr Peanut

SDaniels will be secretary of education

and i will be allowed to continue to be the court jester here even if no one likes the bells on my funny hats.......or my little dots


CuddleFish June 27, 2010 @ 12:55 p.m.

I love your dots, nan, queen of the world. :)


Grasca June 27, 2010 @ 4:26 p.m.

I simply meant if a writer was desperate enough to see their opus in print that vanity press is an option.

I should probably restate my opinion to this, "Financially successful writers have agents and contracts and ISBN credits." One can certainly be successful on the small screen without the props I mentioned.

I think that you also need an attorney to read the small print and negotiate the best possible terms in your contracts.

I don't know what the goals, dreams, and aspirations are for the SD Reader writers. If someone would care to share, I would like to know.


SDaniels June 27, 2010 @ 4:30 p.m.

Nan decreed:


Yes, M'am! Shake them bells, lady! And don't forget that bikini along with your cap! ;)


CuddleFish June 27, 2010 @ 4:49 p.m.

Thanks for asking about my goals, Grasca.

My goal is that I would like to someday be a writer, as good a writer as Mindy/Storyteller. Or Carolyn Matteo. Either.


SDaniels June 27, 2010 @ 4:52 p.m.

"As far as writing. I had one class in 9th grade. One semester"

Right on, lee! Very impressive. You appear to take it well, and understand what it is. I would appreciate your take on my stuff anytime.

As for Hallmark, let me know if your friend reports they are hiring. I have a lifelong dream of being paid to secret strange messages, maybe even just a word skewed here and there, into the cards undetected, in lieu of the usual shlockensmear verses. A kind of performance art, forcing customers looking for the commercial experience to buy AND read something quite different.

Re:61: I have a serious question for Mindy/storyteller:

I am fairly sure you are capable of a non-polemical take on life and ideas in your writing, but are you capable of it in regular conversation? Why do you always drop down with a knife in your teeth, stabbing into the air while shouting that we are on your back, persecuting you?

None of us are, and contrary to your past claims, none of us follow you around, though there is direct evidence that you have taken this activity to the extreme--you know what I mean, and I will not repeat it again here.

Again and again, you bring it to the extreme, resorting to schoolyard epithets about other posters' looks (why this, exactly?), or with me, you exaggerate or distort my words and intent.

Why do you do this? Did you realize that if you didn't, most others would never reply similarly, and would treat you with the respect you claim to want? It's interesting that the one person who dropped to the gutter level of namecalling with you every time, Pete--against whom I actually attempted to protect you a few times--is the only one you decided to categorically 'forgive' for a perceived trespass.

Can you adjust and expand your perception of others, and allow them the complexity you want them to understand in you?


nan shartel June 27, 2010 @ 4:56 p.m.

grasca...i have no dreams aspirations or goals as a Reader blogger

it's just something to pass the time when Bobby's not talking..and when i leave here... (as friend of mine says at the end of his show in his best Homer Simpson voice)

Oh Crap!!!

Now back to reality!!!


nan shartel June 27, 2010 @ 4:57 p.m.




SDaniels June 27, 2010 @ 5:08 p.m.

Hey LPR, good to see you around! And thanks to Grasca and LPR for bringing up those pesky vanity presses. Though what they do is legal, and give some people a way to make believe to themselves and others that what they are doing is real publishing, I agree that there is something inherently dishonest about them, and the product they deliver.

As for the stringers, Grasca says: " on this site often use 2 forms in one submission and mix the journalistic genre and style" (at least as I was taught in my journalism classes) with fiction. This is where things get sticky in my opinion."

There is one stringer in particular who clearly adds strong elements of fiction in his reportage, and all who read him should know what they are getting--if they don't, they simply need to sharpen their eyes.

I agree that where it gets sticky is when you cannot tell whether or not this is happening--vis. those stringers who rehash headlines from, let's say, major Mexican newspapers, adding fictionalized details. It goads refried and Jayallen to no end, and well it should.

I love this activity as literary strategy with a lot of potential, but not as propagandizing. There's yer difference, and that's why SD on the QT is ok and some stringer work is not, and should come with a note of caution, I suppose. I'm not sure if that was the gist of concensus on the two threads flooded with discussion on this very subject a couple of months ago (sorry, can't remember where--Jayallen's threads?), but rest assured, Grasca, peeps were properly troubled. However, interestingly, nothing seems to have changed...


MsGrant June 27, 2010 @ 5:50 p.m.

I'll not spare you the embarrassment, Mindy. This is what I was sent today from "the storyteller" via the Reader e-mail:

"Don't do it for the money, huh? I'll spare you the embarrassment of making this public, but that's not what they're saying over at SD Humane..."

My service at the humane society is important to me. That you would stoop to this level over a blog comment tells me that you are not only a very poorly adjusted person, but that you are having a difficult time with the fact that you were never received very well here, and you have resorted to personal attacks not just on this website, but in my personal life. You could not embarrass me if you tried. But you do a stand-up job of doing it to yourself. You are a despicable excuse for a human being, no matter how you try to portray yourself as an animal activist. I don't doubt that the animals, give a choice, would reject you as well.

I've met women like you. They have a difficult time establishing friendships with other women. You championed msjlee in order to have an excuse to go on the attack. Whatever your motives are, your comments about money and how much you make are in poor taste and smack of deep-rooted financial insecurity. That said, I will now stoop to your level.

My looks, as well as my finances, are still very much intact.


David Dodd June 27, 2010 @ 6:24 p.m.

Regarding publishing, y'all can go ahead and believe what you wish, read blogs from literary agents that apparently have more time to blog then to address their query pile, and so on (note: Most people presume that Ms. Snark IS Janet Reid). You may self-publish, and in all likelihood wreck any chance you'll otherwise have at a career in writing. ISBN is really important if you're a professor seeking tenure or you want to impress someone that doesn't know any better. Put it this way: Write a less-than-excellent debut novel, get it published, and you'll likely never have a shot at publishing another unless you do it yourself.

ISBN is the least important thing to a debut writer.

A debut novel, especially in this era, must be very good, very tight, and very successful in order to further your career. And, the publishing world is upside-down at the moment, regardless of what the lit agents deny. They're scared. Publishers are scared. They aren't looking for debut novels, they're looking for authors that have already been successful. So, go ahead and query agents with your debut novel, and if you get a bite and the agent pitches it and you get a contract, and so on, rest assured that the publisher isn't going to promote your novel.

This is the wrong time to submit anything. Sit on your finished novel and write another one. When the publishing world settles down, then you'll have that much more material to choose from.


Grasca June 27, 2010 @ 6:30 p.m.

The discussions are getting very subterranean for someone like myself who does not know the territory. I enjoy the good writing and some of the back and forth on this site. The Danger Zone activates when this thread or others rises to the level of threats. The writer (Msjlee) shared something personal and does not need to be taken down for her contribution.


CuddleFish June 27, 2010 @ 7:40 p.m.

Would everybody that insists on talking about publishing please clear out of here and go somewhere else to have that discussion?

This here thread is now a fight zone. Keep out the way unless you gonna throw an elbow yourself.

selling tickets at the door


Robert Johnston June 27, 2010 @ 8:05 p.m.

If you wish to know the territory, Grasca...then why not do as we did and start your own blog on this site? I checked "the blog roster" to see if you had a blog on this site. I see that you do not...pity.

So, why not join us, and see if you truly have the tools, talent, desire, and drive to be successful at blogging? After all, if you do it right, it's actually lots of fun! It also can be very educational as well--some of the threads can teach little kids how to cuss!

And as for my "literary ambitions?"

I've got one manuscript in pre-submission form, plus I'm working on two others. My "career" in writing includes over seventy poems published in various journals (and a few in local newsletters), plus being on this site since August 2008 (with one second-place finish for July of 2009).

I do hope to see my manuscripts become published do most writers. Will I make tons of cash? Hardly--at least for the first five tomes. But there is something more rewarding to writing a book than the filthy green stuff...getting your point across to as many people as possible.

And as for Msjlee: A motto I live by when it comes to writing is "Illigitimus Non Carborundum!" Don't let the ba** grind you down! That's how newbies get driven out of writing. Just put your gearshift into maximum overdrive and Keep On Trucking Away at your keyboard.

Be blessed!



CuddleFish June 27, 2010 @ 8:25 p.m.

You know I love your blog, RobbieBear, and I'm sorry, but that advice is almost as bad as the earlier advice to ignore the people who are criticizing her work.

Notice I said her WORK. Not her. There's nothing personal in this, it's not about the writer, it's about the work. MsGrant, SDaniels, nan, and I have offered an objective critique of her blogs. We are offering it to a promising and clearly engaged writer in the hopes that she will take the advice and use it to improve her writing. And we have offered her words of encouragement. None of us think she is the worst, or that she can't improve, to the contrary.

MsG, SDaniels, and nan are brilliant writers. This writer is certainly free to ignore their advice. :)


thestoryteller June 27, 2010 @ 10:20 p.m.

I've been a bit baffled as to why people would throw good money away on something like Vanity Press, when an editor won't publish it. If they think they will make money, they are going to jump at the opportunity to publish it. If they--the experts--don't think they'll make money at it, how will you?

Not well received? Why do you think I keep coming back? I think I've been very well received by Ernie, Mr. Holman, Robert, Josh and Jay.

Persecuting? I defended the innocent woman who was attacked on on this blog. Really, SDaniels, what Josh said was right. "For someone who reads a lot of books, you sure are stupid."

I get along just fine with women. I have a low tolerance for stupidity. It's something I have to work on. I prefer the company of men because they don't waste their time on nonsense. "Oh I love you." "No, I love you more." "You are such a great writer. No, you are." What a load. Don't you have anything better to do with your time? And to think, you guys go on other sites? How do you do it?

Cuddlefish: Maybe you will beas good as Cuddlefish and I, when you grow up. LaPlaca: You have the right kind of attitude. Keep on truckin'.


thestoryteller June 27, 2010 @ 10:41 p.m.

If someone throws crap, I toss it right back at them. It's very sick to think Ms. Grant, etc., can tear down a poor girl this way, and then SDaniels acts like I'm the one who starts the fights, etc. I don't buy B.S. Anyone who knows me will tell you that. I definitely don't buy B.S. and it's very unbecoming of you to act like high school girls at your age.

Grasca: In answer to your question, I post on this site, because I have unexpectedly done quite well on it. I didn't have any big dreams of becoming a writer, in fact, I wanted to be a singer and actress. But I'm too old for that now, and when my kids left home, I began to write because my teachers always told me I was good at it. The first thing I submitted got published and I've been going ever since. My next piece will appear in True Confessions in October.

I don't worry about agents, getting published, and all that, I just write. I write what pleases me. I write what is fun for me, and I don't worry about the rest.


CuddleFish June 28, 2010 @ 2:14 a.m.

Msjlee, you are very lucky to have Mindy the Storyteller on your side in this discussion. She is a famous and wealthy authoress, unlike the rest of us poor slobs on this site. We are just ugly and jealous of your talent. Not only that, but MTS was Michael Jackson's girlfriend and lover for many years. Yes! I know! As the expert in all things MJ, if she says that your summation is dead-on, then who are we to argue?

(Can hear the email winging its way to msjlee's inbox as we speak. Such language.)


thestoryteller June 28, 2010 @ 10:42 a.m.

MSJLEE: Cuddlefish sees herself as the ruler of the San Diego Reader Web site. I guess she has to have some way to feel important since she can't hold a job--her words.

Have pity on the less fortunate. As you can see she posted the above comment at 2 a. m. Clearly, she was in a manic phase.


MsGrant June 28, 2010 @ 11:35 a.m.

Ah, True Confessions. Gracing the backs of toilets in trailers all across America and beyond.


CuddleFish June 28, 2010 @ 12:46 p.m.

Oooh dang, MsG, I never heard of it. Do tell! :)


thestoryteller June 28, 2010 @ 3:40 p.m.

LaPlaca: You are one of the few people on this site who knows what he/she is talking about. My hat is off to you.

I know what you mean. The money IS validating. I had only been published twice in 2007-2008. I thought it may have been a fluke, and that maybe I wouldn't write anything good enough to get published again.

When the Reader had it's first neighborhood story contest, I submitted a story but really didn't expect much. Then I got a call from an editor who asked for my picture because my story was going to get published. I got all excited and he said, "Well, I don't know if you'll win any money or not." At that point, it was enough just to be published.

When the next magazine came out, I went down to the store to get a copy, but my story wasn't in there. I was disappointed. My friend called the Reader and found out the entries were being spread out over three issues. Out of 600 entries, the top 41 were going to be published.

I don't mean to sound ungrateful because I appreciate everything I get published, but nothing beats that first thrill of knowing you're good enough.

I remember your piece. It was uplifting. Good luck to you with your writing. You deserved your win.


thestoryteller June 28, 2010 @ 3:44 p.m.

If anyone would know about gracing the back of toilet seats in America's trailors, it would be Ms. Grant. I have no doubt she's an expert on the subject, as she has proven herself to be utterly classless here.


thestoryteller June 28, 2010 @ 4:09 p.m.

As for Refried's comment #37:

There is a difference between criticism and cruelty. To say that this writer's entry "sucks" is cruel and unnecessary--not constructive at all. I think people blog to be heard, not to be criticized. This is not the arena for it, unless asked for.

I think the people who treat other people badly, as I've found many animal people do, are the people who are maladjusted. Ms. Grant, SDaniels, and Cuddlefish are bitches, and I'm not the only one who thinks so. I think with them off the sight, there would be many more bloggers here.

They are ignorant, unkind, and tacky. To support them--if that's what you're doing--means you are as bad as they are. Congratulations.


CuddleFish June 28, 2010 @ 4:34 p.m.

Gyad, I have to explain everything to some people.

MsGrant did not say, Msjlee, You suck. She said, Your writing sucks. The difference between a personal attack and critique.

Here, let me illustrate the difference.:

Msjlee, your writing sucks.

Mindy the Storyteller, you are a stupid cow and your writing sucks.

Lesson over. :)


SDaniels June 28, 2010 @ 7:40 p.m.

re: #81: "Persecuting? I defended the innocent woman who was attacked on on this blog. Really, SDaniels, what Josh said was right. "For someone who reads a lot of books, you sure are stupid.""

Persecution, anyone?

Ok, I usually resist responding to Mindy because she is still a bore with unfortunately little going aside from complaints and expressions of over-the-top vitriol over perceived slights.

Of course you can perceive nothing in this situation but that you or someone is being persecuted. Mindy, you should be careful who you quote--another example of your choice to remain spiteful and very much on the surface of things.

For those unfamiliar with recent local history, Mindy is quoting someone who was fired for twittering (tweeting?) racial epithets against a small child to the child's mother. Out of a sense of social responsibility, I spent more time than I really had arguing against this "writer's" constant attacks on people of color, women, and adopted people, and taking apart his main thesis, which amounted to perceived links between intelligence and race worthy of a 19th-century cropshare foreman.

"Stupid," besides "idiot," was this person's favorite word, lobbed frequently against others in the hopes of drawing attention away from discovery of his abysmal writing, shallow personality, and petty, mean spirit. You know, Mindy, it makes sense that you would maintain a relation of some sort with him, since you are just as profoundly socially limited, and perhaps even more misanthropic.

That's all. Now I go back to ignoring you, while you presumably go back to outlining or editing your next paranoid rant or hateful message for yet another Reader blogger. We should establish an entire site to hold all of those. Toodles.


SDaniels June 28, 2010 @ 8:25 p.m.

re: #33:

Grasca, I meant to respond to your carefully chosen, thoughtful words earlier; especially well taken are the comments about dialing back. You are certainly right, but in our defense, I think that some of us have been trying to invite others, as they appear on the site, into the 'group.' We are free to critique each others' blog entries (usually) without taking offense. I point out gringo's misspellings, and he can tell me about my comma splices if he wants. Everything is good-natured enough, but you are right that perhaps a certain amount of trust should be established first. I've spent a goodly amount of time in writing groups and study groups, as likely have you, and we know that feelings can be bruised, no matter how deserving the writing is of the critique, and it all deserves 'criticism,' in the sense of plain old discussion, not just evaluation or judgement of merit.

There is also the matter of a writer not necessarily having requested criticism. Here, I'll have to say that besides the fact of the compliment leveled at a writer in the form of simple attention to the writing (to be presumed "worth it"), this is a very public space in which people are presenting their writings in order to be read, and in the case of the neighborhood blogs, to be rewarded in a monthly contest. The Reader does contain a lot of content involving evaluation and critique--of food, film, writing (some), music, theatre, art, cultural events of all kinds. If you put it out there in public, you are putting yourself in the mix. We are invited to sign up and comment, and this means to interact with all of the content, including that which we readers generate.

My personal agenda is to also try to change a little the erroneous perception of literary critique as something negative; I like to do this by making it more visible as a dialogue about work that does not involve only useless (and potentially insincere) compliment, however enjoyable. My stuff has received far less commentary and dialogue on the site than I'd like; I'd rather have honest but accurate commentary on its flaws than compliments that don't encourage dialogue, or any thought about its content.

I don't feel that the Reader is an inappropriate venue for criticism because it goes hand in hand with writing, and think that a group of contributors going around commenting fosters this real sense of "neighborhood" that would otherwise be lacking. However, you are right to point out that the approach could be a bit less intense at times, especially as it no doubt has the potential to actually further misunderstanding, or overwhelm a writer new to the site. Thanks again for your thoughts. ;)


Grasca June 28, 2010 @ 9:37 p.m.

I think one should not critique another in ways that they would not want done to themselves and their writing. The "rules of engagement" here seem to violate boundaries which make someone like myself very reluctant to start a blog. I have been subject to posts so out of line that they were removed by admin . That is not a welcoming start for a person like myself who likes to write. Without naming names (a popular sport or so it would seem) one of the regulars has taken a real dislike to me and between that person and a stringer has gone out of his way to be a real hostile presence.


SDaniels June 28, 2010 @ 10:40 p.m.

Grasca, I have nothing to do with whatever you are referencing, and in fact do not even know who this hostile presence might be, but this is how it is online. There are crazy people, angry people, sad people, all kinds. I've had to learn to develop a thicker skin, too. However, I would like to separate out this issue of critiquing work and your opinion:

"I think one should not critique another in ways that they would not want done to themselves and their writing"

That simply isn't the way it goes in the world of writing and literature, any more than it is anywhere else. Again, if this is our moral guideline, then how do you have any real conversation generated? You don't. It is squelched. I have seen this time and again in in-person writing groups. The moment someone decides that s/he doesn't want his or her writing subject to being picked apart, it compromises everyone's. It is also a very real way to shut down criticism and invalidate its activities through misunderstanding and intolerance (ironic?).

Anyone expresses discomfort with my commentary on his or her writing? I'm gone. We were not meant to hang out and talk books and writing. In this way, I vow to not comment on your blogs, to be sure, and you can trust that I will keep my word. I'm really sorry you have felt unwelcome here, and hope that you feel more comfortable soon, but I also hope that after further thought, separate the issues. Criticism is valid, and it turns the wheels of literature--always has, always will, in my opinion--not that it needs my opinion to validate that fact. On the other hand, this art, and it most certainly is an art --does need my opinion--and yours--to survive. ;)


Grasca June 29, 2010 @ 8:31 a.m.

"Criticism is valid" - a truism. It may be that criticism is also an art which needs to be used with a delicate hand . To maul another's work is not truly criticism but rather an exercise in literary muscle flexing. Playful written jousting is another thing which engages but does not destroy.

I am specifically referencing the incidents where my presumed legal name was posted more than once by 2 regulars who for some reason known only to themselves want to strike fear into bloggers' heart with an "outing" of sorts.

We are allowed to be whomever we wish to be on this site and should not fear this sort of behavior. I reported the violations which were quickly removed by Administration.

I assume that the "out" was an effort to silence someone who was found threatening ? I am still not sure.


CuddleFish June 29, 2010 @ 9:41 a.m.

I think here, Grasca, for a variety of reasons, this thread was "la gota que derramo el vaso." Anyway, time to drop it.

I declare this thread officially dead -- unless you want to buy a souvenir teeshirt, I still have a few left! :)


Grasca June 29, 2010 @ 9:52 a.m.

" En la mala hora te vine siguiendo. "


CuddleFish June 29, 2010 @ 10:15 a.m.

Ooookaaaaayyy. Apparently, this is the thread that never dies.


SDaniels June 29, 2010 @ 1 p.m.

CF, plenty of threads go on and on for lots of reasons. I like it, and don't consider it dead, since I am in a conversation with Grasca.

re: #97 Grasca:

"Criticism is valid" - a truism. It may be that criticism is also an art which needs to be used with a delicate hand . To maul another's work is not truly criticism but rather an exercise in literary muscle flexing. Playful written jousting is another thing which engages but does not destroy."

Grasca, again I am confused. You set out a moral tenet for textual criticism, and say it must be applied "delicately,"--I'm not sure who you are chiding with "mauling" or "literary muscle flexing," but then again, your example of this is not an example of it.

Instead, you switch back to an ongoing fight with someone on this site--and it sounds horrible, to be "outed" if you don't want your info out there-- Again, I am truly sorry this is happening to you, but it is a non sequitur in relation to the argument over criticism, unless this person has also been putting your work down under the guise of performing analysis on it. Can you enlighten me?


thestoryteller June 29, 2010 @ 2:21 p.m.

"I think one should not critique another in ways that they would not want done to themselves and their writing." Very well put, Grasca. Your reluctance to start a blog is exactly the reason I went to bat for this blogger.

I think you have a lovely way with words, and I suggest you start that blog. I will give you my full support. There is no right and wrong thoughts and feelings. Ugly people like to say so, because they have no other way to feel important. People like this aren't worth listening to.

SDaniels reminds me of my father-in-law. He used to say, "Schools nowadays teach people to read, not think." Josh and I are hopeless losers, and yet, we make money with our writing. Suzanne,on the other hand, is an online teacher who blogged about buying her shoes at Payless.

Thanks to the Reader, I have A collection of shoes by Ed Hardy. Who do you want to listen to? I care about what editors think and they seem to like my writing just fine. Even they had to start somewhere. They know how it is.

Start your blog. I look forward to seeing it.


Russ Lewis June 29, 2010 @ 2:50 p.m.

From what I read in the papers, Storyteller, times are tough. I don't hold it against anyone for not making bundles of money.

Then again, maybe you're right. What does that say for most artists, writers, and musicians?

SD, you impress me with your ability to read and think. You surpass me at both by a mile.


CuddleFish June 29, 2010 @ 2:59 p.m.

Says they are all failures unless their closets are full of Ed Hardy shoes.


MsGrant June 29, 2010 @ 3:02 p.m.

Sigh. You had to make me do it, didn't you? Mindy, no one gives a rat's ass about your Ed Hardy shoes, to which you have made previous references. Ed Hardy clothing is a JOKE. There are multiple websites attesting to the "Ed Hardy" mentality, that being extremely unsophisticated people spending outrageous amounts of money on clothing that is already demonized as the "Douchebag" wardrobe. Do not attempt to shout back them I am jealous of you for possessing articles of clothing from this particular line. You strike me as someone clueless about good taste in music, fashion, and literature, and you lash out at people with an education. Your constant references to money and expensive shoes comes across as vulgar. Continue to write for your formulaic three cents a word rags while dressed in your Ed Hardy's. But please keep this in mind: Your attempts to inspire envy in the coven you supposedly detest but cannot stop attacking are laughing at you. Laughing.


thestoryteller June 29, 2010 @ 5:03 p.m.

russl: I don't have anything against someone who doesn't have bundles of money, I don't have them either. I have a problem with someone who acts like she knows better than everyone else, and has nothing to back it up with.

She says things like there isn't much money in writing, as if she's the ultimate authority. There is a ton of money in writing, people just don't want the literary stuff. It's what now? BORING!

There are many people in academia who are there because they feel it puts them above others, and for no other reason. SDaniels acts like that often, and I happen to call her out on it. This goes way back before this blog entry ever got started. I don't think you probably know even half of what went on before.

If you prefer to side with someone who is rude and gauche, who uses her educated opinion to put others down, good luck with that. It's not what I stand for, and I'm as entitled to my opinion as anyone else on the site.

If you think her way is an acceptable way to act, hope that works for you. As they say, if you're not a part of the solution, you're part of the problem. I suspect you just don't know the whole pathetic story.


thestoryteller June 29, 2010 @ 5:19 p.m.

P.S. Thank God you only acquire your opinions on Web sites, who know all about high fashion, music, etc. God knows that's where sophisticated ladies such as yourself should get their information. Give up. You won't win.


MsGrant June 29, 2010 @ 5:26 p.m.

No, I don't feel stupid at all. And I did win. $100.00, to be exact.


CuddleFish June 29, 2010 @ 5:50 p.m.


Fanciful!!! Mindy actually had the nerve to call MsGrant's entry fanciful!!!

Name me one of her winning entry blogs that wasn't fanciful!!! And the one she was planning to win with, the Michael Jackson was my lover and told me his whole life story blog, which after SDaniels exposed her little story for the fanciful thing it was, taken down!!!

Dying here, dying I say!!!!!


nan shartel June 29, 2010 @ 6:39 p.m.

hey u can buy Ed Hardy summer sneakers for $50 bucks on Shop NBC


nan shartel June 29, 2010 @ 6:55 p.m.

Ms Grants entry was GENIUS!!!!!!!

and Dr Peanuts is so funny all who read it need to put a Depends on first....hahahahahahahahahaha

of course i talk to rats and reindeer sox..lingerie...3 ply stainless steel pots and pans ...squirrels that have come here without passport from Canada..and poffered poems at a site where absolutely NO ONE cares to read them...hahahahahahahaha

dbauder and i sing Winnie the Pooh songs together and hunt for Eeyore tail

so what do i know :-O


SDaniels June 29, 2010 @ 9:48 p.m.

russl, I beg to differ, friend. I have had the honor of not just hearing (about) your great talents, and of course we are surrounded by some writers even here on the Reader who take craft seriously and above all else, including, and it goes without saying, how many 'most-copied' objects they can purchase, attempting to bolster a frantic, dying ego.

I count myself lucky to have such friends, whose talents shine as surely as do their stable personalities. Just now, I happened to be listening to a friend's band play just down the street (they sound like a late 70s rock band but with threads of other genres running through a very intense music making--I'll have to arrange for you to hear some of it sometime); it just blows me away what sounds can come from a person's throat and fingers that do not when you are sitting and having a coffee and smoke ;)


thestoryteller June 29, 2010 @ 9:58 p.m.

No, no, Honey. Quotes mean that's what the OTHER person said, not the writer The volunteer coordinator used the word "fanciful," see? She was being kind. You know me better than that. I'd call her an outright liar, and a hypocrite at that. It's o.k. when she lies, but she hold me to a higher standard. Get it now?


SDaniels June 30, 2010 @ 7:32 a.m.

You should if you are a "facist" because Facebook should be shut down as a hypocritical, facist, Liberal, Elitist Web site.


Grasca June 30, 2010 @ 8:23 a.m.

The M word should be banned from the SD Reader site but I am not holding my breath. Visions of Floatatopia interviews conducted wearing flippers and a wet suit might compensate for the ban oversight. Or even better an attempt to play sloshball at Kate Sessions Neighborhood Park on July 4 while holding a cell phone camera and getting a scoop seems inspired. Land of the free, home of the CJ. What more can we ask for at this point in time ?


Grasca June 30, 2010 @ 8:25 a.m.

At least it is Cat Lovers and not Cat Ladies.


CuddleFish June 30, 2010 @ 8:42 a.m.

Pitbull owners and sock puppets, a match made in Floatopia!


thestoryteller June 30, 2010 @ 10:39 a.m.

"The only people that love you on these boards are the cat lovers Nan, SDaniels, Grasca, Ms. Grant, and Anti. Wow! 5 whole people."

As for the stringers, only a total dumbass would take the stringer news seriously. It's obviously done a bit tongue-in-cheek. I believe it's there to entertain, not to keep readers up-to-date on the latest hard news.

All journalists, no matter who they are, stretch the truth here and there to shape a better story. Otherwise, it wouldn't be interesting.

I happen to think Matteo's work is brilliant. She has a unique ability to turn the simplest matter into an engaging story. I envy her.

With all of the "intellect" around here, I think Charlie Brown, as simple and pestrian as he may be, had the best quote for these women. "Those who can't do teach; those who can't teach criticize."


Grasca June 30, 2010 @ 10:47 a.m.

Would it be too declasse to admit that I had no idea what Ed Hardy shoes are ? I did Google them and now have a better idea. Is there any way we can end this as enough insults have been exchanged in the name of the First Amendment ?


Grasca June 30, 2010 @ 11:07 a.m.

I never claimed to be an expert on everything.

Can I send a donation to your favorite charity ?


MsGrant June 30, 2010 @ 11:10 a.m.

Before I bow out of this for good, I feel I must bring up an important point. Mindy high-jacked this blog as her own, accused contributors of the very things she is guilty of, and then accused me of holding her to a higher standard:

"You know me better than that. I'd call her an outright liar, and a hypocrite at that. It's o.k. when she lies, but she hold (sic) me to a higher standard."

I haven't read many of Mindy's blogs, and I certainly cannot recall having commented on many of them or having called out her work. I simply don't have the time. I post blogs and read and comment on the ones that interest me. As loath as Mindy is to believe this, I certainly don't do it for a living. It's a hobby. In this thread, I was commenting on the blog, not Mindy, until she became cruel in a highly personal manner to the posters. Then she sent an e-mail to me outside of the comments and started attacking me personally.

Mindy, I think msjlee can fight her own battles. She said her piece and left. Your childish missives "taking the side of" and "give up. You won't win" are, quite frankly, the rantings of a seriously deranged woman trying to live out some twisted mid-life "get even with the clique that spurned me in life" fantasy through this website. Why you have chosen me as your new target based on the limited amount of time I have given you is beyond me. I am sorry if I chose the more cerebral input of some of the other posters here and prefer their company. My brain became bored with the easy stuff around 2nd grade. That said, whatever your abhorrent motives are, please leave me out of them.


Grasca June 30, 2010 @ 11:16 a.m.

Should I note your legal name somewhere on the check or is the stage name of The Regulator sufficient ?

Hey Dude or Dudette I don't have a dog in this fight but think wasting money on babysitting drunks when the City is broke cannot lead anywhere but to bankruptcy.


Grasca June 30, 2010 @ 11:25 a.m.

Having always admired Nancy Drew I will speculate using her superior detective skills that our severest critic wears many masks and may not really be from the era of Dwight and Mamie Eisenhower as he/she purports to be. If this is the truth, then congratulations for being au courant with computers at such an advanced age. The insulting stuff is so Old School though and bespeaks some problems with Mother and women. Why don't you go after some of the male contributors who cross boundaries on this site ? I celebrate diversity and want to see what you have to say about them ? Or have they been banned from this site ? Yes, I used the B word. Pistol Peter comes to mind as your identity.


Grasca June 30, 2010 @ 11:27 a.m.

Oops I capitalized P when it should have been a small p.


SurfPuppy619 June 30, 2010 @ 11:38 a.m.

Having always admired Nancy Drew...

As a kid I was a big fan of the Nancy Drew books, as well as The Hardy Boys and The Three Investigators (newer series).

I was very disappointed when the Nancy Drew movie, with Eric Roberts Daughter Emma Roberts(Julia Robert's neice), flopped like a bad pancake.

But if you ever watch the Turner Classic Movie chanel they will run a marathon of the old Nancy Drew movies from the late 1930's with Bonita Granville-I like those old movies so much.......


Russ Lewis June 30, 2010 @ 11:45 a.m.

"Life is high school with money."

--Frank Zappa

More like elementary school.


Grasca June 30, 2010 @ 12:02 p.m.

The Regulator is Cher's secret daughter. The one she doesn't acknowledge.


Grasca June 30, 2010 @ 12:05 p.m.

No, the other one she had secretly with Bill O'Reilly.


Grasca June 30, 2010 @ 12:11 p.m.

The TRO request by attorney Marco Gonzalez was dismissed. There will be fireworks at the La Jolla Cove this year in case the not so famous daughter of Cher has nothing better to do.


Grasca June 30, 2010 @ 12:14 p.m.

Oh sadness. I thought of you more as a Dog Beach kind of gal.


thestoryteller June 30, 2010 @ 1:05 p.m.

I like this TheRegulator person. Where have you been? Do let me know about the petition. I'll sign. The editors, unfortunately, allow the cruelty to go on in the name of freedom of speech. They don't believe in censorship. They are shooting themselves in the foot, as far as I'm concerned.

Grasca: "Ed Hardy" is a line of clothes designed by a brilliant designer named Christian Audigier. He has set the trends for today. You have probably seen his clothes on the street, or at least the knock-offs because everybody is wearing them--from Madonna to people with a "douchebag mentality." (When it comes to class and good taste, I will certainly defer to Ms. Grant from now on, as she is so good at determining such from the classy Web sites she gets her information from.)

He is famous for making the skull with roses popular, although I don't care for that. Recently, he has gotten attention for designing the clothes for the no-talent, little known peasant named Michael Jackson, for his "This is it Tour." But who needs a chump like him when you can have the sophistication of the successful "kitty click" on the Reader Website? My shoes and scarf are pictured in the above avatar.

Ms. Grant: I don't knopw how I gave you the impression I thought you wrote for a living. One 3rd-place win doesn't make you good enough to do it for a living. Who am I to say? I'm someone who has been in a winning category 5 times, never third place. Call it bragging if you want to, but it is a fact, and I think it qualifies me to have a say.

So you and your group don't like me? Well, okay. What do I need you for? Since you don't read my blog, you don't know that my first story appeared in Good Housekeeping, and was subsequently chosen for a book called "Blessings" which is for sale at Barnes and Noble. The editors of GH refer to the contributors as "talented ladies" which includes myself, Alice Hoffman, Jodi Piccoult, and Luanne Rice.

Because of that piece, which was about dog rescue, I got calls from all over the country. Good Housekeeping forwarded letters to me, and published a letter to the editor about it. A dog rescue person praised it and used it in her newsletter that helps raise money for rescue.

I met two ladies at the shelter who went nuts when they found out I was the one who wrote it. A few months ago, a lady in Arizona called me and asked me to attend a party in Escondido so I could sign copies of the book for her and her friend. A friend of mine has an autographed copy of one of my Reader stories hanging in her living room.

I don't consider myself to be a threat to Toni Morrison, but I'm o.k. with what I've done. I would prefer to be liked by everyone, but if I'm "too low" to be liked by certain people, that's o.k. There are plenty of people around who think I'm o.k.



Grasca June 30, 2010 @ 1:20 p.m.

Quite honestly I don't know anyone well enough to summon up a dislike for them on this site. I got Hurley confused with Ed Hardy and then realized that Jon Gosselin was a fan Ed/Christian's clothing. I feel old as the brands of my day were Hang Ten and OP. I will try to keep up with trends.


Grasca June 30, 2010 @ 1:57 p.m.

In an ideal world how would like comments to be presented in these threads ?


Grasca June 30, 2010 @ 2:34 p.m.

What rules would you like to see followed by bloggers as well as the administration of SD Reader to make things run more smoothly ?


nan shartel June 30, 2010 @ 5:27 p.m.

i know matteos sox puppet...he can speel...he's just assertive attention seeking footwear


thestoryteller June 30, 2010 @ 5:46 p.m.

Like shooting fish in a barrel, TheRegulator. If you look at my past comments, I've said pretty much the same thing for over a year. I've often asked my husband why no one else says anything about this disgusting group of wind bags. He said, "No one else has the energy."

I hate injustice, and I had a sister very much like the blogger. She was drop-dead gorgeous and a model, and really not a fighter. The "nasty" girls in high school treated her like dirt, and I had to have enough fight for the both of us.

Like you, Ms. Grant's unwarranted nastiness, just triggered something I couldn't control. In hindsight, if I hadn't acted so impulsively, I would have addressed Ms. Grant in a kinder way. Unfortunately, you can't take back your comments once they are out there.

They march around like they own the place. As far as rules go, I think "the Reader" should add a comment to its disclaimer that says "this is not the place for ads, etc., AND UNSOLICITED CRITIQUES. Disagreeing with what someone says, is different than attacking someone personally.

I hope you start posting here again and often. We could use the fresh air around here. Bloggers, don't quit. Let's stick together and take back the sight.

Grasca: I haven't thought about Hang Ten and OP in years. You've taken me back to my teenage days. Jon does wear Ed Hardy. I'm no fan of his, but many other people wear it too. I wear what I like. No one gives a crap in Escondido. Start your blog. It takes courage at first, but you'll get over it. I think you have a nice way with words, and I'd be interested in reading it. I read few blogs on here because they've largely gone to dirt. It's become a social network rather than a place for stories.

If someone else doesn't like it, well, who are they? Only unkind people would give you mean critcism, and why would you care what they think? People with something to offer don't want to be mean.


Grasca June 30, 2010 @ 5:47 p.m.

Who is gone ? I wait in breathless anticipation of their absences.


thestoryteller June 30, 2010 @ 6:03 p.m.

BTW, Ms. Grant, you're not being well received.


Grasca June 30, 2010 @ 6:40 p.m.

The Kliban cat is also from the OP/Hang Ten era. That was one cool cat. There are some males who need to be "regulated" on this site. Because I am a discreet person, I will not name names.


thestoryteller June 30, 2010 @ 9:06 p.m.

Some people have criticized Refried and Pistol Pete, but over the course of a year, I saw them grow a lot. They toned their style, became gentler.

I liked singleandawesome, who dropped out of sight. Rickeysays, ChristinaFernando were good peeps. I have to admit when I first went on this sight a couple of years ago, it was much more fun. Hope it becomes that way again.


thestoryteller June 30, 2010 @ 9:19 p.m.

Well, if CF likes to "kiss that rag's ass," what is she doing here? Let them have her.

We have bipolar in the family, and I recognize it in her. Anyone who blogs at 4:20 a.m., and can spew pages of venom at that hour, is in a manic phase. She sometimes talks as if she's out of control. I think of her as more of a pest than anything else, but she was here too much. We just couldn't take it.

I've talked to the powers that be about SDaniels and they don't believe in censorship, and unless they are at risk legally, they aren't going to do anything about it.

I think if you handed them a piece of rope, they'd use it to hang themselves. This is their bread and butter, and I can't see the sense in losing money in the name of protecting censorship.


thestoryteller July 1, 2010 @ 7:39 p.m.

As Josh would say, "This just in."

A poster who will remain anonymous just sent me the following e-mail:

"Not looking for kudos or strokes here, but I cannot STAND this group of harpies. I wish someone would kick the crap out of their illiterate, arrogant A$$e$. Almost all forums have one of these nasty "cliques" who pump each other and sadistically attack anyone who isn't them. I've heard on T.V. and the radio several times a day that many, many of them are getting paid by the government to populate every single forum, and squash and mob sincere writers or those they deem "unacceptable"....the nicer you are, the bigger target you present. I'll see if I can find any Internet articles about it and post those somewhere appropriate in the future. Keep on butt-kicking!


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