Poll

Which author is the most overated in the genre?

J.K. Rowling
J. R. R. Tolkien (choose this and Gollum will eat you)
Robert Jordan (LIES!!!)
Terry Goodkind
Orson Scott Card
Terry Brooks

Author Topic: Authors undeserving of their fame.....possibly  (Read 7977 times)

Patriotic Kaz

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Authors undeserving of their fame.....possibly
« on: October 01, 2009, 03:15:27 AM »
Meyers is not listed b/c that would be admitting Twighlight was indeed a book. Something that "terribad" can not be written by any REAL author...it would be like saying WWE is actual fighting!


P.S. if you want an author added you need 2 nominations
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Recovering_Cynic

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Re: Authors undeserving of their fame.....possibly
« Reply #1 on: October 01, 2009, 03:47:08 AM »
I was going to pick Terry (Goodkind and Brooks), but that would include Terry Pratchett, who happens to be the best satirist out there writing today.  Don't knock the Terry peeps.
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ryos

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Re: Authors undeserving of their fame.....possibly
« Reply #2 on: October 01, 2009, 04:15:17 AM »
The question doesn't really compute for me. How do you tell if an author is deserving or not? Is it just if they became famous by writing books you don't like? By that metric, Jane Austen is most undeserving of her fame, as is Herman Melville...but I'm not buying it. The masses choose irrationally as they always have, and no author is more deserving of their attention than any other.
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Bejay

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Re: Authors undeserving of their fame.....possibly
« Reply #3 on: October 01, 2009, 12:21:43 PM »
Hm,

1. None of the above is really overrated or undeserving. I WOULD pick the Terrys, but like Recovering_Cynic said, there is Terry Pratchett and he alone does redeem that name.

2. Who is Gollem?

Patriotic Kaz

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Re: Authors undeserving of their fame.....possibly
« Reply #4 on: October 01, 2009, 02:38:03 PM »
I can't spell... and i put big names up there that i here people complain about often....with the exception of Card which just happens to be my personal opinion...he gets so many darn awards and yet his writing style is B rate. i'll change Terry to Goodkind for ya peeps
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little wilson

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Re: Authors undeserving of their fame.....possibly
« Reply #5 on: October 02, 2009, 04:53:36 AM »
I'm kind of with ryos on this. Saying an author is undeserving of fame is a little ridiculous. I personally think the only author who that truly applies to is Stephenie Meyer (blasphemy, I know, calling her an author. But she is. Even if I wish wasn't. Even if I wish her "saga" was used more for fire kindling than actual literature). Obviously there are people who like those authors. That's why they're famous. And if they add something to a genre, or give people a love of reading then that's good.

Some people use that excuse for Meyer. "Oh sure, there's not a lot of literary merit to it, but it's gotten so many people to read." Whatever. A lot of those readers can't read anything EXCEPT Twilight now. It's killed the literary world more than anything and that's not even addressing how much it killed mythologies. Ugh. If ever there was a book and author more undeserving of fame, it's her.

The question you really should be asking, however, is over-ratedness. That IS something that can be judged. Take the hype a book has and does it live up to it? It's that easy....Meyer still wins, though. She'll always win--at least in contests about "the worst."† :P
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mtlhddoc2

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Re: Authors undeserving of their fame.....possibly
« Reply #6 on: October 02, 2009, 05:20:44 AM »
I picked Rowling from the list. Frankly, I started reading the first Potter novel and couldnt get through teh first chapter. Thats bad.

I dont think Card is bad, or over-rated. Matter of fact, I just started the Ender series for the first time about 2 weeks ago and just finished book 6. the "science" in it is rather shaky, but teh historical and militaristic bits are spot on.

A question though: why is it that nearly every sci-fi or fantasy author that "makes it" is either Mormon or British? Are the publishing houses owned primarily by mormons or Brits?

Peter Ahlstrom

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Re: Authors undeserving of their fame.....possibly
« Reply #7 on: October 02, 2009, 06:20:43 AM »
I think you're perceiving something that isn't borne out by statistics to quite that degree. But actually such things have been discussed before.

The second part is slightly easier to explain. The US literary crowd is more likely to accept SF/F as literature if it's not written by an American. This started with Jules Verne (yeah, I know he's French),  Arthur Conan Doyle, and H.G. Wells. Homegrown stuff is seen in a different light.

The first partólet's not have another Mormon thread, but some people think LDS are more accepting of SF/Fantasy than some other religions because life on other planets is an accepted part of church teachings (though such life is generally understood to be human rather than any kind of exotic alien). So if you have a religious person who has written a SF/Fantasy novel, I'd say the likelihood that that person is LDS is somewhat higher than would generally be expected from straight population percentage. The proportion difference is probably not very high though. When you have a few outliers like Card, Meyer, and Sanderson that can throw off the perception. But when Robert Jordan and Marion Zimmer Bradley were at the height of their careers did anyone start saying, "I wonder why there are so many successful Episcopalian fantasy writers?" It may just be that LDS are perceived by non-LDS as being out of the mainstream, so when you see them successful at something it stands out to you.

Here's a list of SF writers and their denominations: http://www.adherents.com/adh_sf.html
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Re: Authors undeserving of their fame.....possibly
« Reply #8 on: October 02, 2009, 05:19:40 PM »
The problem with saying that an author is "undeserving of their fame" when they're that successful, though, is just this: these people are selling (at least in some cases) ridiculously huge numbers of books. No matter how horrible we think they are, if their books have the appeal that they do for so many, they've obviously done something right.

OokPeter, that's interesting. Thanks for the link, I'll have to check it out sometime.

Patriotic Kaz

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Re: Authors undeserving of their fame.....possibly
« Reply #9 on: October 02, 2009, 05:21:55 PM »
Hardy har har... Heinlien and i are both reformed baptist...as in saw the light and skipped out :P
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sortitus

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Re: Authors undeserving of their fame.....possibly
« Reply #10 on: October 02, 2009, 06:38:40 PM »
I haven't read any Goodkind or Card, but I voted anyway. Rowling's first book was good, the second through fourth were passable, and the others were just awful. I didn't vote for her. I enjoyed Tolkien when I was a kid, though I don't especially like reading him anymore. I can respect the amount of worldbuilding he did, and I appreciate what he did for the genre, so I didn't vote for him either. Jordan is one of my favorite authors.

Brooks? Each of his books read like LotR with less of everything. Less fighting, less detail, etc. The only thing he outstrips the other authors on the list that I've read in is complete suckitude. If I want the characterization detail of a shoestring-budget puppet show, I'll go to a shoestring budget puppet show. I'll enjoy the story more, I'll spend less time, and I won't have to admit that I dropped money on a novel by such an awful author. (Note that I have never purchased a Brooks novel, while the others on this list (that I've read) have earned at least one purchase from me.)

As far as Meyer is concerned, I don't mind people messing with legend. After all, that's what every fantasy author does. She writes dime novels, but she's marketed as the new Hemingway (That's hyperbole, for those of you who didn't catch it. Which gives me an idea; we should call understatement hypobole.). That's what bugs me. That and her perception of science and research.

I was looking for a statement that somebody linked to (link was dead, and  I think it was somebody on here that linked me, but that doesn't matter) in which she allegedly said that she thought that stalking was hot when I ran across another part of the same interview (the page I was looking for was missing, and it was the only one) in which she said that the skin of her vampires is "...a diamond-like substance (only harder)." Yes, the skin of her vampires is very brittle, hard, and is actually more transparent than reflective. They're not only as hard as stone, they're rigid enough to make a "loud bang" when they collide. A little bit of knowledge is dangerous.
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Re: Authors undeserving of their fame.....possibly
« Reply #11 on: October 02, 2009, 08:04:37 PM »
Card, to me, is very uneven.  He has moments of sheer brilliance, but his series always seem to fizzle out.  Perhaps he should just write stand-alones.
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Patriotic Kaz

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Re: Authors undeserving of their fame.....possibly
« Reply #12 on: October 02, 2009, 09:49:08 PM »
So far it appears no one wants to be eaten. :P And Sortitus are you sure what you said was hyperbole?
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Re: Authors undeserving of their fame.....possibly
« Reply #13 on: October 02, 2009, 10:11:59 PM »
Peter: I am surprised there is a list like that!

I am not surprised that alot of them are athiests/agnostics, since, like you said, most religions think it is blasphemy when an author gets into magic and the like, and also, it makes sense that there would be more Mormons if they are more accepting of those types of books.

I was not using statistics for my find, more like: 5th author in a row thatI have read that was Mormon. I just thought that was odd. Especially sinces Mormons are a small percentage of the population, that we would find such a large percentage in the SF/fantasy writing field. Especially with more recent authors, not so much with older works.

sortitus

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Re: Authors undeserving of their fame.....possibly
« Reply #14 on: October 03, 2009, 05:30:55 PM »
...are you sure what you said was hyperbole?
Well, I haven't heard of anyone comparing Meyer to Hemingway yet. I don't exactly go around looking for reviews of an author that I don't enjoy reading though. Then again, Google returns 60k results for a search including "Ernest Hemingway" and "Stephenie Meyer" in quotes. Remove Hemingway's first name, and the count goes above 80k.

I see that Goodkind is by far the most popular choice. What makes him worse than, say, Brooks?

BTW, I still think that the forum should filter certain terrible authors' names into "PONIES", "PURE CUTENESS", or something similar ("I see that PURE CUTENESS is by far the most popular choice. What makes him worse than, say, PONIES?").
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