Actually, Mark, my ATS has been acting up lately, so I appreciate the tip.
It appears that a clueless male author has mouthed off about women being genetically incapable of producing "serious" fiction. Here from yesterday's The Book Standard is another depressing article about sexism in literary circles:
Genteel? Or bloody? That distinction between two sub-genres of mystery books—“cozies” and “hard-boiled”—may determine who wins the Edgar Award for Best Novel tonight. And the outcome could go to the heart of a debate within the industry: Are female mystery-writers—most often the authors of the more non-threatening, proper cozies—even worthy of the award? Otto Penzler, dean of mystery-writing in America, says no.
Hmm. Is anybody else out there thinking it's time to elect a new dean of mystery writing?
“The women who write [cozies] stop the action to go shopping, create a recipe, or take care of cats,” he says. “Cozies are not serious literature. They don’t deserve to win. Men take [writing] more seriously as art. Men labor over a book to make it literature...."
And there you have it, folks. Cozy mysteries are not serious literature. We know that because they aren't bathed in blood and peppered with profanities. And women don't take writing seriously, the dean says. Although he really should cut us some slack. He has no idea how difficult it is to squeeze an hour of dabbling at the writing desk in between a hair appointment and lunch with the girls.
It's almost as funny as it is annoying that Mr. Penzler appears to believe that what my husband lovingly refers to as "slash and dash" books are by their very nature more "literary" than cozy mysteries. That's as stupid as insisting chocolate-almond ice cream is better than rum-raisin. It isn't better, it's just different. True, some brands are better than others. But it's the brand that's better, not the type of ice cream.
I'd like to point out that Mr. Penzler is a member of the sex that thinks flatulence jokes and burping the alphabet are clever. So I can only roll my eyes when he and his belly-scratching friends write gore heavily laced with profanity and then crow about being literary giants. Maybe some of them are. But if they are, it's not because their work fits neatly into a certain subgenre; it's the writing. Mr. Penzler has made himself look foolish by suggesting otherwise. And he is foolish if he honestly believes men are by nature more talented or more "serious" writers than women.
I've said before that I don't consider myself a feminist, and I don't twist myself in knots trying to be politically correct. But when someone displays prejudice of this magnitude in a public forum, even a non-militant type like me tends to take offense on behalf of her gender.
You know, I think I'm really going to enjoy sitting back and watching the feminists go after this guy. Sic him, girls!