talk about backfiring

so yesterday my book came out. The one based on Daddy Long Legs and so far it's gotten one response. A two out of five star rating and this comment:

I love the book "Daddy Long Legs." It's one of my favorites. It's a charming and delightful read. The description of this book sounds as if the author has ruined everything I love about DLL. I will not be purchasing it.

I don't rag on readers but in this case I can make an exception because honestly, she's not a reader. Naw, I won't rag on her because opinions really are fine. My opinion? I wish she'd read it before doing The Big Hate thing.

I get the idea that some books are sacred and now I wonder if I've done a disservice to my book and DDL by mentioning DDL.

I loved that story too, a lot, and hoped that would come through if you read my book. But only if you read it. Granted Ben is no Judy** But I did try to emulate Judy's spirit of persevering though rotten times, her thirst for knowledge and finally a sort of coming to a new sense of self. Plus there's the whole who's the benefactor thing.

Elizabeth, if you're out there, I'll send you a copy of it and if you still hate it, then I invite you to write a long screed here and anywhere else. Heck, I've already published your criticism! You can just make it more detailed next time.

** I like these footnote things better and I'm on hold with Virgin Mobile.

Judy is a wonderful character but yes, indeedy, my hero is different. I figured it would be extremely icky if I made them alike. It's an homage not a rewrite. No one should attempt a rewrite of that story.

* * * *
UPDATE because I'm still on FREAKING HOLD.

and what is the language of this stuff? I've looked but not seen any definitive answers. here's what I think:
rewrite: telling the exact same story but with different words.
retelling: sort of telling the same basic story, but with twists.
inspired by (or an homage to) : can be hard to recognize unless you're looking for similarities
plagiarism: we're talking just exactly the can't do it legitimately...well. Okay, you can if you're making movies and you trumpet it to the world and pay someone the big money. (See "Sabrina")


  1. Congratulations on your release! And I completely agree with you. I'd be different if the person had read the book and had issues with pacing, character likability, or plot. Then her criticism might actually be constructive. Her loss. It sounds like a fantastic book to me. Hugs.

  2. Thanks, Chandra.

    On the one hand I get it: her criticism was an emotional response which can't really be "wrong" Plus I can respect someone who loves a book so much they hate to see it ruined and they aren't interested in giving a red cent to someone they think has defiled it.

    On the other hand: dude! sheesh.

  3. Anonymous8:57 AM

    How incredibly annoying! I don't understand why people think it's okay to hate on a book/movie/play/album/etc. that they haven't even read/watched/whatever. I've even seen so-called professional reviewers do this sort of thing, and it drives me up the freaking wall. Grr.

  4. elaine, no way. really?

    PROFESSIONAL reviewers do that? That is inexcusable--not to mention the extreme opposite of doing their job.

  5. Uncle Andrew2:26 PM

    I know how Elizabeth feels. I hated her comments even before I read them.

    BTW I'd love to read the new book - how about a book-for-CD swap?

  6. Anonymous5:16 PM

    Congratulations on the new book! Yah! I didn't know you could review a book without reading it. How does that work? Kind of like, I looked at the cover and the colors confused me?

  7. I read an early draft of this book and I will be buying it, comparisons to DDL aside. Personally I hardly remember the book which I read long ago and hated the move with Caron and Astaire. On its own merits, with a plot all its own, Thank You, Mrs. M. is simply a good read. It hooked me from the beginning and held my attention to the end with hardly a bathroom break. I WILL be buying the book.


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