Tuesday, April 06, 2010

April Fool?

I thought that April Fool's Day was past. April 1st wasn't it?

But then I also thought that being a journalist meant investigating things, hunting down the facts, teasing out the truth and then reporting as accurately as possible . . .

More April Fool me!

What am I talking about? An article that appeared in the Irish Independent this morning - apparently on the back of the announcement that so many younger readers are now downloading Mills and Boon novels onto ereaders instead of buying them in shops. This article, under the heading: Mind & Meaning: Why Mills & Boon still make the ladies swoon claims to explain why romances are still so popular with readers - it's the safer alternative to lying down in a dark room with a bottle of whiskey, apparently!

I don't have time to point out exactly how many 'facts' this woman has got wrong in such a short article - basically it's about 750 words or total inaccuracy - but luckily for me I don't need to. Irish author Trish Wylie (who wasn't approached for a comment or any information for this article - no, that would constitute research and effort rather than just parroting what other lazy journalists have said before) has done a great job of this already over on her blog today. I could hope that the author of the Irish Independent article will read it - but I doubt it.

Sometimes I wonder if it's worth the time and the effort to answer these lazy inaccurate journalists - at around 3,500 words, Trish's detailed analysis is about four times as long as the original - and for me that would be a good writing day total on one of my books. But then this particular article really has to be in the running for the award for the record number of innaccurate 'facts' in the shortest possible number of words.

Oh well - I should be used to it by now. I'm going back to write one of my "gentle love stories where the main players are good looking and thoughtful," and where in the dénouement "the hero gently tells his heroine of his love for her as he bends to kiss her tenderly but fulsomely on the lips. She reluctantly submits and a spark within her acknowledges her previously denied attraction to this tower of masculinity"

Ah yes - apparently this "holds more appeal than . . . exploring themes of lust, revenge and betrayal." Which is going to be a problem considering what I'm going to be working on today . . .


Jackie Ashenden said...

Wow, I thought journalists only did that with romance in NZ. Clearly not. Must remember to take out all the lust, revenge and betrayal in the next wip. They obviously have no place with gentle readers since they sell so ridiculously poorly. ;-)

Anne McAllister said...

Obviously the writer didn't look up the meaning of the word: fulsome either. And no points for the publisher for printing it with so many errors and misused words (though perhaps she did mean 'fulsome' in its appropriate sense, in which case, yuck.


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