Sorry for the lack of…well, anything the past month or so. I’m not sure what’s gotten into me, but it’s sapped all my creative energy and desire to do much of anything. Anyway, you’re here now for the peeve, so I’ll get straight to it. 😉
Today’s peeve is a quickie. I’ve been doing a fair amount of reading lately, (still working on the Agent Pendergast series, if you’re interested) and one of the books I read recently rubbed me the wrong way. Not so much because the story/plot was bad (though I’ll admit it wasn’t one of the better ones in this series), but because it was extremely obvious the authors had never set foot in the region the book was set in. Also obvious? They’d never bothered to meet any of the people from said region. It’s sort of like all those generic “Arkansas” jokes from people who’ve never actually met anyone from Arkansas or visited the state (which the Ozark region is exceptionally beautiful, and I’d highly recommend visiting if you’re the outdoorsy type). When I read a book set in a certain area, I expect the authors to actually be knowledgeable about the area and give the reader an accurate picture of what the place is really like. I want the image in my head to be accurate. Why? Because sometimes I decide I want to visit a place based on what I’ve read/heard about it, and I can’t always recall exactly whether the description came from a fiction book or a travel show, and I don’t like nasty surprises. I also don’t like “generalizations” of a place based on a stereotype that isn’t accurate for most (or sometimes any) of the population/region. (i.e. Kansas/Oklahoma is all tornadoes all the time, Arkansas is full of trailer trash redneck types, or Kentucky’s population is 100% hillbillies who married their sisters/brothers–see how stupid that is?) Especially because people remember the negatives, but don’t bother to see if those negatives are correct and don’t remember the positives.
Does this sort of thing bother anyone else? Or am I all on my own on this one?
So much for that being a quickie. Sorry about that. 😉 Wishing all you lovelies a fabulous (and creative) weekend! 🙂
I totally agree! I have noticed the quality of books, at least e-books on my Kindle, have dropped dramatically with the trend towards self-publishing. It is good to find new authors, but I feel like I have to wade through far more bad writing to find them. Good luck getting out of your slump. Maybe go roll around in your fabric stash or shop for a new piece. That always helps me get my motivation back. sewingforme.wordpress.com
I’ve heard that the free books for the kindle via the lending library thing (I’m not sure what the actual term is, I don’t have an e-reader….yet) are atrocious. It’s kind of one of the reasons I’ve held off on buying one because I’m not big on buying every book I want to read, so I guess for a while I’ll just stick to my local library. The ladies there are always a blast to visit with anyway. 😉
And LOL on rolling around in my stash–if I did that, it’d probably just stay on my floor where I was rolling for the next 6 months getting stepped on. 😉
lol 6 months! I bet food or chocolate would entice you out at some point =)
On the weekend, I watched the movie Bus Stop (which amusingly I almost typed Bust Top, perhaps it’s a little early for me to be commenting). Marilyn Monroe, 1954, after she had done things like How to Marry a Millionaire (which I also watched on the weekend). In Bus Stop, she’s playing trailer trash/singer from Arkansas and it irritated me. Actually her male counterpart in the film annoyed me more, playing a rancher that had never left the ranch nor encountered a woman in his 21 years of life. He couldn’t even cross the street because he’d never been in a big city. It didn’t read as naive for me, it read as stupid and I find it really hard to believe there wasn’t a single woman in his life. Not a cook, not a wife of a neighbour, nothing. I love a good screwball comedy, I think Monroe can be incredibly funny with the right dialogue and physical comedy, but I just could not get behind any of the characters and I think it was the use of stereotypes that irked me.
It would probably be a good idea if I didn’t watch that movie. I hate those kind of over-the-top stereotypes.
I live in Oklahoma and I lived in Arkansas for about 10 years so I know that some of the stereotypes are true but I hate that most people see the stereotypes and believe that’s all there is to a place. There really are “trailer trash” types in OK and AR but most of them are good people even if they are poor and uneducated. And those are not the only kind of people here. Tulsa has the second largest GLBT population in the country. (That’s what I hear anyway.) Tulsa, OKC and even the small town of Bartlesville have symphony orchestras and there are some great museums here too. There really are tornadoes in OK but not every week and the big, really destructive ones are rare. One misconception about OK that especially bugs me is the widespread belief that the entire state is nothing but flat grassland. I posted some pictures of the mountains in SE OK and got comments from people who had no idea there was anyplace like that in this state.
I’m from KS and went to college (and have some family) in OK, so I’m somewhat familiar with parts of the state and it’s people. And while I agree that there is some of that “trailer trash” type, it isn’t the dominant feature, and like you said, those are often still good people who are for whatever reason stuck in poverty and/or poorly educated. But to hear others tell it, you’d think the whole state was a bunch of ignorant trailer-dwellers, and that just makes me mad. So yes, that was sort of a long-winded “I agree”. LOL!
And as for the area being flat grassland, that’s an annoyance of mine about Kansas too. Obviously people’ve never been to Medicine Lodge to see the beautiful red hills, or Manhattan to see (what I assume is) the start of the Ozarks, or the chalk hills over by Hays, or up by Kanopolis to see the beautiful sandstone cliffs. I actually have a post coming up about the sandstone cliffs….we were just there doing some hiking. 🙂 And I’ve seen the rolling tree covered hills that are reminiscent of North Carolina over by Tulsa, the sand dunes, the salt plains, the Arbuckle Mountains…Oklahoma is a pretty state as well. And the people are just so darn nice–I can’t think of anyone from Oklahoma who hasn’t been friendly and willing to help however they could if the need arose.