There’s been a lot of talk about the incident with Harlan Ellison and Connie Willis. My summery of the incident is simple. Don’t be an asshole to people. There’s a difference between being an asshole and being funny.
Speaking of which, something else has happened which I think maybe should be discussed. First, I’m the sort of guy that can get along with almost anyone. I rarely get into fights with people. I get along with the unlikeables for some reason. I think sometimes I collect lost souls. [Note: I will admit that the exception to this was a certain vampire LARP club I was in for a while where it was difficult for me to get along with some of the members.]
There are a ton of people that loath Nickolaus Pacione. While I have had friendly discussions with him, I can’t really blame anyone else for hating him as he’s a fairly unlikable guy. If you want to engage him in a flame war or make fun of him on your livejournal/forum, go ahead. If you hate him with the red hot passion of a thousand suns and it works for you, then great. There is still a guy that I can’t stand from the vampire LARP that I try to avoid.
I recently visited http://www.nakedsnakepress.com/. Naked Snake Press is going to publish one of his books and it appears that they have been getting harassing emails. Harassing Naked Snake Press because you don’t like Nickolaus Pacione is childish.
I’ve never read anything by him so I don’t know if he is a good writer or not. Maybe he is the worst writer ever as many claim and I’m sure he has poked enough bears to make people mad at him. Some of the complaints that I have heard say that Nickolaus is insulting, threatening, and he harasses people. I can’t and won’t defend that. However, I can point out that whoever is sending the harassing letters is insulting, threatening, and harassing Naked Snake Press. If you become the very thing you are fighting against, you lose.
Here is my story.
I started writing seriously a year ago after my wife encouraged me.
When I started, I didn’t know anyone. I found ralan.com and started sending out my stories. At first, it is very scary sending out your stories into the abyss. I edited several of my old stuff and started sending it out while writing new stories. One of the stories was “the Art of the Deal.” I love this story, but it is a bit of an albatross. It was the first sale I had ever made way back in the early 90s to Aberrations. It folded and it took me a while to realize it. I started sending it out to the big boys, but no one was interested in it. I saw a posting for Tabloid Purposes III on http://www.ralan.com and submitted it. I had never heard of Nickolaus Pacione. Six months later, I received a reply that he was accepting it, but that people really hated him and I should be warned. I pointed out that I had never heard of him and that he was likely exaggerating things.
And then I started seeing posts about him on live journal, in forums, and almost everywhere. I’ve only recently started networking and working my way up the ladder. The sheer amount of vile kind of surprised me. There’s even a “national I hate Nickolaus Pacione live journal post day.” And yet, when you act like an asshole to people, you can’t be surprised if they respond in kind. Nickolaus Pacione has been an asshole to people so I don’t really feel all that sorry for him.
Does that mean that Naked Snake Press deserves harassing emails? Am I going to get e-mails for submitting a trunk story for Tabloid Purposes III?