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Let’s Clear Up Some Misconceptions

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Hey there, internet land. There are rumors going around, so I’m gonna address some of them. Let me establish some things that need to be established:

  • My words are my words. Nobody else is responsible for them.
  • I work with a few different companies. They do not endorse my statements.
  • I work with a few different industry professionals. They do not endorse my statements.
  • Anything I say is just me saying it. I am not a representative of anyone else.
  • I am not going to start trouble or be controversial at anyone’s event. I am a pleasant, easy to get-along with person. When I come to an event, I am there to meet people who want to meet me and hang out with them. I am not there for drama or to ruin anyone’s convention.

I also want to further my apparently controversial position on books/movies/tv pirating. I don’t care. I legitimately do not care if anyone does it. The only time I have ever reported someone for pirating a book of mine is when it’s a book published by a publisher, within two years of publication. Why? Because that publisher invested in me and it would be pretty shitty of me to see something like that and not give them a heads up.

There are some of you out there saying, “How would you feel if someone encouraged piracy of one of your books?” or “I hope your books get pirated.” There are readers who could verify that they’ve posted on their twitter or their tumblr that they’re looking for illegal downloads of my self-published books and I’ve provided them with those links. I pirate my own books. You can’t wish this ill upon me. I’m already doing it myself.

Also, please don’t approach me on Facebook about any of this. I barely ever use Facebook. If you have a concern about my statements or statements others have made about me, contact me via email, my twitter, or the comments section here. Otherwise, I probably won’t see them.

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50 Comments

  1. I don’t know about these rumors, but it makes me sad to hear it. I love that you actually have opinions and share them. Everyone is so gentle about 50 shades in public, it’s surreal.

    March 12, 2015
    |Reply
    • ginmar
      ginmar

      This is what comes of giving a whole frickin’ generation trophies just for having a pulse. Some people SHOULD have shitty self esteem, and if you write a supremely awful piece of crap eroticizing the rape of a teenaged slave by her master, you’re one of them. Even worse, in my opinion, is somebody like Whineberg, who is at an age where he ought to be an adult yet who does this for shit and giggles.

      March 13, 2015
      |Reply
      • Nanani
        Nanani

        Yes because blaming an entire generation of young people for a book a woman significantly older than them wrote makes perfect sense, even more sense than generation-blaming usually does.

        (/ sarc)

        March 13, 2015
        |Reply
  2. Petra Newman
    Petra Newman

    Jen I just want to say how much I’ve admired your stance on all the shitty stuff that’s gone down on Twitter over the last couple of days. You’ve held your head up, fought your corner and when it became apparent that the idiot you were arguing with had lost his head up his ass, you withdrew. Please don’t stop being yourself and calling out shitty behaviour when you see it. I love your books too. Just wanted to say this somewhere I wasn’t confined to a limited number of characters!

    March 12, 2015
    |Reply
  3. Nutmeg
    Nutmeg

    So, yesterday you were a terrible, no good person because you used your super author powers to get your angry mob of followers to pull some poor, defenseless indie author’s (raciest) book off the shelves. And obviously that went against the fundamental rule of don’t criticize any art at all ever because someone put some effort into it and if you say anything bad about it you’re bullying them. Also something about freedom of speech and AMURICA.

    But today you’re a terrible, no good person because you let the internet in on a secret called piracy and that you don’t care if someone does it or not so obviously let’s get all YOUR books taken off the shelves.

    Sorry. I just had to write it all out so I had a clearer picture of the neck breaking back and forth these people are doing.

    March 12, 2015
    |Reply
  4. I really hope these assholes don’t affect your ability to do appearances/signings/etc. Your opinions are yours, and that’s what a blog is for, yes? And if people don’t want to be called out for behaving badly, *they shouldn’t behave badly*.

    (Also, I’m with you on “piracy”. Oh, someone copied my work? Cool. Hope they liked it. Hope they buy the sequels.)

    March 12, 2015
    |Reply
  5. Bragandbounce
    Bragandbounce

    I don’t have the mental energy right now to be articulate about how I feel here, except to say … ‘Don’t let the muggles get you down.’

    March 13, 2015
    |Reply
  6. Lieke
    Lieke

    Just remember that for every asshat out there who has a problem with you having an opinion there is at least one person out there who loves you for speaking out. Honestly, I hope the ratio asshat:admirer is more like 1:1000, but there seem to be a lot of asshats out there, so I don’t know.

    March 13, 2015
    |Reply
  7. And this is what self-publishing has wrought. We now have a bunch of people who couldn’t write their way out of a paper bag who have built up a following of people I can only assume are functionally illiterate and the “writers” think they’re gods because people who don’t know EL James from F. Scott Fitzgerald love their work.

    I know of a couple established writers who went the self-pub route because they didn’t want to deal with publishers anymore, but the general masses doing this are doing it because their work just sucks and no publisher would touch it.

    And this shitstorm is the result.

    Sorry, Jenny. You should be able to write a thought-out blog post about something and be critical of it on merit without having to deal with this. Had Kevin written a rebuttal, we might not agree, but at least it would be mature. These attacks and petty fights are just annoying. Whatever happened to rational discussion?

    March 13, 2015
    |Reply
    • Carolina West
      Carolina West

      “Whatever happened to rational discussion?”

      I think it’s gone out of style with common sense and human decency.

      March 13, 2015
      |Reply
    • Chris
      Chris

      Renee, so, we are to garner from your first paragraph that people who enjoy some books that have been self published are functionally illiterate? I enjoy Jenny’s writings and applaud her sense of opinion. I don’t however like the fact that people then come on the forum portion of the website and act like they themselves are the embodiment of F Scott Fitzgerald. If the authors choose to write the books and self publish them, then why do you care what sort of literary status the readers are? That all sounds somewhat “sour grapes” on your part, to me. We don’t have to tear down one author to make other ones seem better. They stand on their own merit. I know Jenny does and hers are very smartly written books! Are you a frustrated author?

      Everyone should be able to “write a thought-out (in their opinion) book/story and not have to deal with this”. I agree!

      March 13, 2015
      |Reply
      • On the contrary. I’m a frustrated reader. When books like Fifty Shades and After do so well, we get more books like Fifty Shades and After. And then what do those of us who actually recognize good writing get to read?

        March 13, 2015
        |Reply
        • Also, I spent several years in journalism, right at the start of the self-publishing craze. We got sent book after book after book begging for coverage and not one of them was any good. Most of them couldn’t put together a coherent sentence.

          I’m not saying there aren’t decently-written self-published books. I’m saying 99% of them aren’t.

          March 13, 2015
          |Reply
          • Chris
            Chris

            That sounds awfully condescending, again, I’m all for letting people find their own way. Not all folks start off at the same place. I’m sure if you read any notable young author and then read their later works, there would be a vast difference.

            I also have a journalism degree and enjoy all kinds of reading. Moreover, to your point, “not one of them were good or unable to put together a coherent sentence”, that’s a broad leap!

            March 13, 2015
          • “Moreover, to your point, ‘not one of them were good or unable to put together a coherent sentence’, that’s a broad leap!”

            I didn’t say that.

            March 13, 2015
    • Aletheia
      Aletheia

      “Whatever happened to rational discussion?”

      Pfft. That’s something that rarely, if ever, ever happened in literature amongst authors. 😛 Renaissance writers would diss other writers’ works in their own. Restoration writers (especially the men, against the women who dared to enter their spaces to write) would outright mock, attack, and/or demean not only writers’ works, but the writers themselves, whenever they could (encapsulated in their own works, outright writing parodies of what they saw as ‘bad literature,’ writing ‘satirical’ poems and all, writing editorials attacking others, etc). Victorian authors had plenty of publishing feuds, and book reviewers (who may or may not have been authors themselves, depending on the reviewer) often chose to “discuss”/attack writers and their personal lives rather than the piece of literature they were supposed to be discussing. Etc, etc, etc. People being people.

      The only difference now is that everything is a lot more instantaneous and visible, which leads to packs of rabid fans easily set loose at the slightest scent of dissension.

      March 13, 2015
      |Reply
      • Good point. I just wish we’d moved past that. I am well aware of the difference between, “I didn’t enjoy that,” and, “That was a bad piece of writing.”

        There are books I’ve enjoyed immensely that I can objectively say were not good books. lol And there are books I hated that I thought were very well-written. I absolutely get the difference. And I have never been upset when someone negatively critiqued a piece I thought was excellent. Plenty of people hate Harry Potter, ASOIAF, Shakespeare, what have you. If you can give me a rational, detailed explanation about why it’s bad (beyond “I didn’t like it”), I will hear you out. I may not agree, but it’s something I can respect.

        People get so angry with me for negatively critiquing something they enjoyed. I give specific reasons, whether it’s poor sentence/paragraph/chapter or whether it’s poor plotting, whatever. I have a reason. Yet I get backlash for my opinion from people who can’t say anything more than, “Well, I liked it.”

        March 13, 2015
        |Reply
    • Let’s just remember that Anne Rice is traditionally published, and though she can write her way out of a paper back, she’s still acting unprofessionally when it comes to crying bullies.

      March 14, 2015
      |Reply
      • Mitzy247
        Mitzy247

        But she supports “responsible shaming” and anti-bullying!

        I once greatly respected her as a writer, as someone to look up to. I saw the “responsible shaming” on Twitter and now that respect is gone.

        March 14, 2015
        |Reply
  8. BooksChatter
    BooksChatter

    I have just read all of the previous comments and wholeheartedly echo them all.

    You also have the right to free speech, and I can only admire you for having the balls to stand tall and express your opinions, which, I might add, are very sensible.

    I cannot even find the words for the people who start the hate campaigns against you.
    All I can say is that you must be doing something right 😉

    Don’t ever change!

    March 13, 2015
    |Reply
  9. Cindy West
    Cindy West

    Talk about books all you like, Jenny. Some of us can recognize who the bullies are and who they aren’t.

    March 13, 2015
    |Reply
  10. Chris
    Chris

    here you go….

    “We got sent book after book after book begging for coverage and not one of them was any good.”

    cut and pasted from your reply.

    March 13, 2015
    |Reply
    • But that isn’t what you wrote in your previous comment.

      March 13, 2015
      |Reply
  11. Chris
    Chris

    your reply…..”not one of them was any good.”

    my reply…..“not one of them were good”

    my reply……Most of them couldn’t put together a coherent sentence.

    your reply…..“We got sent book after book after book begging for coverage and not one of them was any good.”

    I’d say that’s the same! Anyway, we can agree to disagree! Don’t feel the need to reply!

    March 13, 2015
    |Reply
    • Aletheia
      Aletheia

      Nah, it’s totally not the same. You can put together a coherent sentence and still be a shitty writer who can’t form a decent plot, or conflict, or organization, or characterization, or a thousand other things that go into developing a good book.

      March 13, 2015
      |Reply
    • Sam
      Sam

      Hmmm you might want to work on your reading/writing comprehension. You clearly misrepresented what Renee said. Not really sure why. Maybe you wanted to make it seem like she was jumping to conclusions? Anyway, your point is invalid.

      March 13, 2015
      |Reply
    • Trudy
      Trudy

      People who say ‘don’t reply’ are the most arrogant people out there! So why shouldn’t she reply to you? Let’s do a bit of analysis on your own comment. What you are saying here is ‘I want the last word in this argument’. Sorry free speech doesn’t work like that.

      March 14, 2015
      |Reply
  12. Suzy
    Suzy

    So here’s my take on all of this:
    There has always been good, bad and indifferent books. Just as there has always been good, bad and indifferent music, movies,art etc. It’s just that now it it so much easier for one to get their creations seen by the entire world. Should a lack of brilliance at your given medium discourage you from attempting to succeed? No. But when you put yourself out to the public for praise you have to accept the criticism as well. The problem that has arisen is that critics shy away from criticism for fear of backlash from authors and their fans. That is what has happened to Jenny and anyone who has a forum to use.
    I’ll put it in another context. My younger sister is a smart girl. However, no matter how hard she tried she was never the straight A student I was. She studied like crazy and never got above a C in algebra. Should she be proud of that C. Yes, she put a lot of work into it. Should she get an A because she tried so hard. No, her work only merited a C. More importantly, would it have done her any service for my parents to encourage her to be an architect? No, you have to realize your limitations and find a passion that comes from your strengths. Maybe find an area of the architecture process that you are good at and find a career that you can be relaxed and happy in.
    But more to the original point of the earlier post, a person has the right to write almost anything. But remember your words have meaning. It’s acceptable to unknowingly write something that offends someone. The level of offensiveness dictates the level of repercussions. If you write something blatantly racist, you need to own up to it. If you did not see it as racist, you need to find out why people feel it’s racist and apologize and make amends (be it changing the context, names or whatever). This is not some radical idea, it’s simply being empathetic to others.
    How hard it that?

    March 13, 2015
    |Reply
    • Suzy
      Suzy

      Wrote this on my phone and it wouldn’t let me edit. So this wasn’t one of my more brilliant replies. “Smart Phone” indeed.

      March 13, 2015
      |Reply
  13. maggie mccollum
    maggie mccollum

    I just wish I could give you a big hug. I am so sorry you’re dealing with all of this ugliness and that it is taking a (very understandable) toll on you. I’m sending you every good, happy, shiny thought possible. You are awesome.

    March 13, 2015
    |Reply
  14. Just wanted you to know that I love you and don’t ever change. 🙂 The world needs kickass people like you.

    March 13, 2015
    |Reply
  15. thegreatestdragon
    thegreatestdragon

    I’m kinda relieved to find out your stance on pirating. I’ve been waiting to get the Boss series until I can afford it and, well, I’m a college student, so cash only ever flows out of my wallet, not in…

    March 13, 2015
    |Reply
  16. Canada
    Canada

    You are a prickly cunt. That is all.

    March 14, 2015
    |Reply
  17. ginmar
    ginmar

    Fuck off, Kevin.

    March 14, 2015
    |Reply
  18. Sorcha
    Sorcha

    Jenny, would it be possible for you to remove ‘Canada’s’ “prickly cunt comment? I don’t have a problem with the word cunt – I think it’s an awesome word. What I do have a problem with is it being used as a derogatory term. Women don’t need more belittling than we already put up with.

    Stay strong, Jenny. Your blog is a ray of sunshine in an otherwise dark and dreary world.

    March 14, 2015
    |Reply
  19. ginmar
    ginmar

    It shows who these people are. There’s a Native American activist panning Jenny’s books on Amazon……but i’m sure she’d freak out if a white guy eroticized the rape of NA women.

    March 14, 2015
    |Reply
  20. Nonnie
    Nonnie

    Fuck all the haters, Jen. You’re smart and funny and the way you speak your mind and carry yourself through the shit that gets handed to you is nothing short of inspirational. You’re a good person, with more brains and more of a conscience than all the jerks giving you a hard time combined.

    March 14, 2015
    |Reply
  21. So that guy has started tracking down commenters here and attacking them on their blogs. He clearly must be the author of this book, or why would he obsess over it so much?

    March 15, 2015
    |Reply
    • JennyTrout
      JennyTrout

      No, he gets off on starting shit for attention. Someone sent me screencaps where he was instructing people how to make sock puppet accounts to attack his targets.

      His new angle is that the author of the Hemings book is a PoC, and this was a racially motivated attack on them (although I’m not sure how anyone was supposed to know that Fionna Free Man was a PoC). He’s running out of ideas.

      March 15, 2015
      |Reply
      • Tessany
        Tessany

        This is taken directly off if the author blurb on Amazon…

        This is an erotic bundle of short stories written by members of a nudist colony. The couple will travel to remote parts of world and visit naked tribes and nudist colonies in exotic locations. The stories will continue with the same characters in the other e-books by Fionna and Dick Free Man. Dick and Fionna Free Man is a pen name for one writer with both a masculine and a feminine side. There are many elements of murder mystery BDSM, fetish sex, vampires, werewolves, fantasy fiction, sci-fi, pleasure, lust, desire, temptation, passion and seduction! Dick and Fionna are a make believe married couple with a fictional daughter named Fanny. Look for erotic romance e-books by Dr. Fionna Free Man Sex Therapist. Also e-book author called Willa B. Free does Erotic photography of nude couples in exotic location and famous landmark in all 50 states. The couple writes about sex stories, love, smut, temptation, desire, lust, seduce, forbidden, fetish, romance, kissing, touch, aroused, relationship, girlfriend, boyfriend, come read them all!
        “Fiona Free Men” is a pen name. How would anybody know what nationality “Fionna Free Men” is when there is actually no “Fionna Free Men”?
        I appologize in advance for formatting mistakes, I’m on a cell.

        March 15, 2015
        |Reply
        • JennyTrout
          JennyTrout

          Yeah, there was literally no way for anyone to know that the author was a black woman. They’re grasping at straws at this point.

          March 16, 2015
          |Reply
      • I’ve seen those links. A recently created account on a video site with no identity confirmation is sure bulletproof evidence of his claim. Funny how he’s the only person who seems to know where to find ANY information about the author and links it constantly.

        March 15, 2015
        |Reply
    • And STGRB is convinced I got it taken off of Smashwords—which I didn’t. *facepalm*

      March 15, 2015
      |Reply
      • JennyTrout
        JennyTrout

        LOL, it wasn’t on Smashwords.

        March 15, 2015
        |Reply
        • At least they’re linking my blog post cautioning authors to be careful about signing on to the anti-review-bullying crusade. Inbound!

          March 15, 2015
          |Reply
  22. Anon
    Anon

    Actually if we’re going to be factual (again do your research), the Jefferson book lady her own video channel. But you know, research is for smart people.

    March 19, 2015
    |Reply
  23. Chris
    Chris

    Don’t have time to analyze and, I put that out there because the person repeatedly contacted me and I am at work! No analyzing required! As for arrogant, I don’t think so!

    March 27, 2015
    |Reply
    • Who repeatedly contacted you? Are you saying I contacted you outside of this blog or someone else? Because, first, other than that your name may or may not be “Chris,” I have no idea who you are; and second, I have never gone outside of this blog to contact any commenters.

      So if you’re talking about me, you’re either a liar or having delusions.

      March 27, 2015
      |Reply
  24. Chris
    Chris

    Thanks for that, Sam. As always I am in awe of the insight people have while blogging…..it baffles the mind.

    As for reading/writing comprehension, not even a chance of difficulty in those arenas.

    March 27, 2015
    |Reply

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