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Friday News and Deals: Dorchester Pub Goes to Auction; Warner Bros...

News

Dorchester appears to be dead. According to Publishers Marketplace, the assets (including any book contracts) of Dorchester Publishing have been put up on the auction block.  (Reg Rq’d)  There is one bid from a “FAA Investors LLC”, but PM was unable to flush out who the company was behind the bid.


Everyone and their cousin is writing about Fifty Shades of Grey.  Slate suggests that the female fantasy of being sexually overpowered is one of narcissism.  I find this to be a kind of fascinating concept.

Instead the desire is narcissistic, meaning that women want to be the object of someone else’s overwhelming lust and need. Women want to be wanted, and if they are not they lose interest quickly. “What really turns women on is being so sexy that someone can’t help but transgress to get to you,” says Marta Meana, a professor of psychology at the University of Nevada.

I think Meana might be on to something.  I’m not certain it is narcissism that is the root of this but the concept itself explains why the stalking is viewed a sexy.  Before we dismiss this out of hand, I think it is a concept that deserves exploration.  I’d argue that the concept arises out of security. In other words, a man who is willing to “transgress to get to you” is a man who won’t leave you, won’t cheat on you, won’t do anything to endanger or imperil you.  This isn’t the reason that everyone enjoys a romance but it’s interesting.


You want a digital copy of a DVD you bought? Warner wants you to pay for that. In fact, they want you to take the DVD to a DVD ripping depot where, in return and for a fee, you will get a DRM’ed digital copy.  Seriously.


A Michigan moviegoer has filed a lawsuit against theaters for the outrageous price of concession food.  He is looking for it to be a class action.  Where do I sign up?

Pamukkale, Turkey

i09 has a post putting together 10 amazing real world locations where a writer could set their book. The places are so amazing that it is hard to choose one favorite place but I ended up with Pamukkale, Turkey because I don’t think I’ve ever read a book that featured a setting like it.


Deals

  • Memory of Morning by Susan Sizemore * $0.00 * A | BN | K | S
  • Powerful Magic by Karen Whiddon * $0 * A | BN | K | S
  • The Life She Left Behind by Maisey Yates * $0 * A | BN | K | S
  • Falling for You by Julie Ortolon * $0 * A | BN | K | S
  • Divorced, Desperate and Delicious by Christie Craig * $0 * A | BN | K | S
  • Donovan’s Angel by Peggy Webb * $0 * A | BN | K | S
  • The Crossroads Cafe by Deborah Smith * $1.99 * A | BN | K | S

Jane Litte is the founder of Dear Author, a lawyer, and a lover of pencil skirts. She spends her downtime reading romances and writing about them. Her TBR pile is much larger than the one shown in the picture and not as pretty. You can reach Jane by email at jane @ dearauthor dot com

44 Comments

  1. DS
    Mar 09, 2012 @ 12:30:34

    You mean Warner’s great success with UltraViolet is not enough? /sarc. I think Samsung was offering or intending to offer a blue ray player that would rip a DVD and send it ot the UltraViolet cloud service. It’s just asking for an effed-up mess from what I’ve read.

  2. JL
    Mar 09, 2012 @ 12:47:58

    Jane, you make an interesting point about stalking, insecurity and narcissism. I obviously don’t have all the answers, but I thought it might be interesting to add another perspective to this discussion: I honestly don’t believe that all ‘stalking’ or ‘obsessive love’ scenarios are the same (in lit) or that people get the same thing out of it. I realize you make this point, too, but the quote from the prof sounds rather reductionist to me.
    I have very ambivalent feelings toward Twilight for this reason. Objectively, besides the bad writing, I recognize it’s just plain creepy. But, at the same time, I saw it as one of the very few venues that young female readers could think about and explore their sexuality in a non-threatening way. A guy who is completely obsessed with you means no risk of him cheating or leaving you or for not putting out. I suspect many young female readers got to think about what their sexual desires and interests would be in that extremely low-pressured, highly empowered environment. Certainly in real life, young women don’t get the chance to dissociate their thoughts about sex from fears of being abandoned or judged. To me, that is really what sets Twilight apart from all its copycats.
    I can’t say for sure that BDSM and adult-geared novels (and I haven’t read 50 Shades) accomplish the same thing, but I imagine for some people it’s refreshing to think about sex without the interferences of the outside world. A lot of romance and erotica novels do deal with real world complexities of shame and judgement and cheating and STIs & accidental pregnancy (though not enough with respect to those last two), and they are fantastic. But these intense, stalker-y books take those elements out and focus almost exclusively on desire. They serve a different purpose. I’m just not convinced that purpose is narcissism, or feeding one’s insecurity.
    Sorry for the very long post!

  3. joanne
    Mar 09, 2012 @ 12:53:52

    What is it Dorchester is auctioning if it’s seperate from their book titles? Office space? Equipment? The name?

    On my long, long list of articles I don’t want to read about is the motivation of women who are excited about Fifty Shades of Grey. It reminds me too much of all the fuss over Erica Jong’s Fear of Flying. Much ado about not much.

  4. Linda Hilton
    Mar 09, 2012 @ 12:55:41

    The way I understand it, the Dorchester sale of 8 March 2012 (yesterday) to “FAA Investors LLC” was only for Dorchester Media LLC, which is essentially the magazine half of the business. Dorchester Publishing, iow the Leisure Books etc half, is still up for grabs but any potential sale is in limbo due to questions regarding rights, payments owed to authors, etc. Detailed information and timeline at http://www.briankeene.com regarding most receent two-year history of problems at Leisure, but similar problems have been going on since the early 80s.

  5. Linda Hilton
    Mar 09, 2012 @ 13:16:26

    Marta Meana’s analysis is nothing really new. The whole idea of the “heroine” being so overwhelmingly sexy and desirable as to drive the “hero” to do anything to have her, including raping her, was explored by (iirc) Susan Elizabeth Phillips in “Dangerous Men, Adventurous Women,” and the so-called safety of exploring one’s own sexuality through fiction and specifically through romance novels goes back at least to Beatrice Faust and Helen Hazen in the early 1980s.

  6. Maili
    Mar 09, 2012 @ 13:19:11

    In other words, a man who is willing to “transgress to get to you” is a man who won’t leave you, won’t cheat on you, won’t do anything to endanger or imperil you.

    I don’t think it’s necessarily just the man. A woman can do it as well (which could appeal to male readers), or both. Off my head:

    Phantom of the Opera (well, Susan Kay’s Phantom was probably more popular) (male)
    Cyrano de Bergerac (male)
    Lolita? (male)
    The Fountainhead (female)
    Endless Love (both? Maybe male)
    The Thorn Birds (female)
    Flowers in the Attic (both?)
    Interview With the Vampire (both male) Edited: this shouldn’t be on the list, I just realised.

    (I’m not counting Romeo & Juliet, Duel in the Sun, Othello, The Collector, Anna Karenina, Of Human Bondage, Madame Bovary and Wuthering Heights because all features wilful harm, endangerment and/or death. I was on the fence over Kay’s Phantom, but it’s extremely popular with female readers so I’m including it on the list. Can Dr. Zhivago be counted? I’m thinking no.)

  7. Isobel Carr
    Mar 09, 2012 @ 13:30:01

    Pamukkale is amazing, but sadly most of it doesn’t look like that. It’s just one cascade down a hill (with a parking lot and a hotel at the top now). The whole think is maybe a couple hundred feet across and that’s it. A whole range of hills like that would be stunning though. Most of Pamukkale looks like the foothills of California (though the necropolis is really cool to explore).

  8. Kwana
    Mar 09, 2012 @ 13:35:51

    I too thought the Slate article brought up some good points. The whole driven to distraction feeling and being overwhelmed. It brings up an all consuming teenage kind of love when nothing is more important in the world than that other person and I do think that it may be what a lot of women are attracted to by this book.
    Sort of (on another level) when their man wants to watch the game and they go and stand in front of the tv. They want to be MORE important than any game, any job, anything in his life. It’s a fantasy yes but very romantic.

  9. Las
    Mar 09, 2012 @ 13:37:09

    “Instead the desire is narcissistic, meaning that women want to be the object of someone else’s overwhelming lust and need. Women want to be wanted, and if they are not they lose interest quickly. “What really turns women on is being so sexy that someone can’t help but transgress to get to you,” says Marta Meana, a professor of psychology at the University of Nevada.”

    I thought this was a given in romance. It certainly explains the popularity of Harlequin Presents and all the rape-y romances of the not-so-distant past.

  10. LG
    Mar 09, 2012 @ 13:48:18

    @Las: Not just Harlequin Presents. I think the same thing could also be considered a potential appeal of the mate bond found in a lot of paranormal romance. Maybe it’s due to the ones I read, because I don’t tend to seek out paranormal romance in which the woman is a supernatural being of some sort, but I can think of more mate bond books in which the hero is more affected (emotionally, physically) by the mate bond or the hero and heroine are both affected than I can think of ones where the heroine is more affected. So, you’ve got a hero who wants and is drawn to the heroine, maybe moreso than the heroine is drawn to the hero, at least in the beginning. The mate bond often makes it impossible that he’d ever even consider anyone else. In some books, the result can be stalkerish behavior, an intense need to “claim” his mate, etc.

  11. MaryK
    Mar 09, 2012 @ 13:57:45

    @LG: super-hero in pursuit :)

  12. Moriah Jovan
    Mar 09, 2012 @ 14:23:30

    …women want to be the object of someone else’s overwhelming lust and need. Women want to be wanted, and if they are not they lose interest quickly. “What really turns women on is being so sexy that someone can’t help but transgress to get to you,”…

    I just don’t know what to say to this. It’s like somebody outside of romance just woke up one day and got a clue. Duh.

    Narcissistic? Who cares? I can point to plenty of navel-gazing litfic novels. Are those any more or less narcissistic?

    The alpha-hole hero is and has always been the dude who can’t control himself around THAT ONE WOMAN.

  13. Lynn S.
    Mar 09, 2012 @ 14:27:18

    That’s a different take on narcissism. I don’t think true narcissists need the obsession of another as their value comes strictly from their own opinion of themselves. You can ignore a narcissist completely and she’ll still know you are thinking about her, because why wouldn’t you.

    I would see the fantasy more as seeking value and worth through objectification although it is more complex than that. Even though the concept is as ancient as time, that doesn’t mean it isn’t worthy of further discussion. Seems like a good topic for an opinion post sans It That Is Not to be Named.

  14. Jane
    Mar 09, 2012 @ 14:29:53

    @Linda Hilton From Publishers Marketplace:

    Burton Weston, the lawyer handling the auction, told us that Garfunkel, Wild received one advance bid from FAA Investors on the entirety of Dorchester Media, including the magazines division (including True Confessions and True Story), all domestic and foreign copyrights and intellectual property, and all computer equipment.

  15. Moriah Jovan
    Mar 09, 2012 @ 14:30:11

    @Lynn S.:

    seeking value and worth through objectification

    That is an excellent characterization.

  16. Jane
    Mar 09, 2012 @ 14:31:58

    @Lynn S.: It is a great piece for discussion. If you have any thoughts, let me know. I’ll write something up for April. We have a really great series of posts planned on fan fiction, the ethics and legality of it. Sunita put it together and we’ve even got a really special guest who will be posting. Am excited.

  17. Linda Hilton
    Mar 09, 2012 @ 15:01:48

    @Jane: If you read the PDF that was linked to yesterday and read Brian Keene’s blog, “Dorchester Media LLC” is separate from “Dorchester Publishing.” The Dorchester Media sale to FAA Investors LLC included copyrights related to the magazines; the DP sale is not concluded, investigations are still on-going regarding liens, copyrights, contracts, obligations in arrears to authors.

    from http://www.briankeene.com/?p=10828#more-10828 :

    The auction took place at 2pm today //yesterday, 8 Mar 12//. It was conducted by Burton Weston of the Garfunkel, Wild, Travis law firm located in Great Neck, NY. However, Dorchester’s plan to sell the company as a single unit was apparently unsuccessful. When I spoke with Burton Weston earlier this afternoon, he confirmed for me that only the Dorchester Media division was auctioned today. The Dorchester Publishing division was not, although he does expect it to be at a later date.

    And from the article you originally linked to:

    Importantly, however, Lazarus clarified a somewhat confusing issue about the notice of foreclosure, saying that it did not apply to to book publisher Dorchester Publishing itself – a separate auction of assets is planned for later. “We are on a mission to find buyers for the book titles of Dorchester Publishing, and we have a number of people interested,” so much so that Lazarus says the company is “close to doing a deal.”

    They can’t, however, “start the clock ticking” on a possible auction unless there’s a stalking horse bid in place, and under New York State Law, this type of sale cannot be held until a minimum of 20 days after a lien search but no less than 50 days after the search is completed. The lien search on the Publishing unit is complete, but, Lazarus said, negotiations “became much more convoluted and complex” because of the number of rights and royalty issues at play

  18. sarah mayberry
    Mar 09, 2012 @ 15:19:57

    I think the narcissism thing is really interesting. I have long had this theory about female sexuality, that being desired is a key part of being turned on for women (in general terms, am sure there are exceptions to this). Hence the fact there are a gazillion female prostitutes servicing men in the world, and a tiny fraction of men servicing women. In theory – I have argued this many a time around many a dinner table! – the idea of having a man do anything and everything that you might sexually desire is a heady thing indeed for most of us. But paste over that the notion that he’s doing all those things because you’re paying him by the hour, and suddenly the element of desirability is out of the equation. Given that women spend a great deal of time on sexual display of one kind of another from the age they realise they are different from little boys (from twirling in our pretty new dresses to wearing high heels and lipstick and push up bras), stripping away the element of desire strikes at something we value highly. But it’s just a theory. I love what @Kwana said about Twilight tapping into the urgency and life-and-death importance of teen love. That was the feeling I got when I read the first book – that all consuming this-is-everything-ness of teen romance. I think it’s heady stuff to remember back to a time when you didn’t have to worry about phone bills, the mortgage, etc, etc, but only what grades you were going to make and if you were going to let John get to third base.

  19. Alicia
    Mar 09, 2012 @ 15:29:43

    @Jane: The ethics and legality of fan fiction in and of itself or the ethics and legality of changing the names and selling it as your own original work?

    Also, it looks like the price of Memory of Morning is 99 cents now at Amazon and B&N.

  20. Jane
    Mar 09, 2012 @ 15:31:52

    @Alicia: I think that the latter is part of the former. Clearly with 50 Shades and the Brady Bunch homage and other previously published fan fiction, we are entering kind of a new dynamic. (At least it seems new-ish to me)

  21. Ruthie
    Mar 09, 2012 @ 15:57:26

    @Lynn S.: Yes, I agree with you. It’s a strange use of “narcissism,” because narcissism is about self-love, and I think this trope in romance is about being turned on and affirmed by one’s own objectification.

  22. Alicia
    Mar 09, 2012 @ 16:32:15

    @Jane: They definitely intersect, though I think it becomes an entirely new ballgame when it’s sold as original. (That Brady Bunch one seems really weird though. Or is that just me?) It’s fairly new to me as well. If it was ever going to become an issue I wish it had when I was writing my advanced copyright paper on fan fiction. This would have been much more compelling, though probably even harder to research. I’ve seen you say you’re for loosening the reigns of copyright, so I was just curious as to what the focus would be.

  23. Jane
    Mar 09, 2012 @ 16:39:23

    @Alicia: We are going to try for a balanced approach. We have someone who is really immersed in the fan fiction culture writing a piece and then some legal analysis.

    I think the real problem is a) there isn’t enough case law out there to really set some hard boundaries on fan fiction and b) these ethical issues are so new it’s hard for everyone to grapple with with is ethically okay. Ethically things might differ from the legality of things.

    Take the Brady Bunch thing. Everything in me recoils over it for some reason but on the other hand if one is to look at strictly at the charge of copyright, it is about the advancement of science and creativity. Right now I’m grappling with these issues internally so I am interested in reading the coverage. I am not actually contributing to this series but will be reading, absorbing, and thinking about what concepts the posts generate.

    If you have something you want to share from your paper, we would love to hear it. Sunita, like I said, is in charge. Email me and I’ll hook you two up. jane at dear author.com

  24. library addict
    Mar 09, 2012 @ 16:40:28

    I’m not a fan of high concession prices either, but from what I understand the theatres make nearly all of their money off them. They do not get much of a cut from actual ticket sales as that money goes to the various studios/dictributors (unless the movie runs for a month or more, then their take goes up a little bit). So I always look at it as supporting the high schoolers who clean the theatres (and people are total slobs when they aren’t the ones who have to clean up after themselves).

    Then again, I usually only buy a Diet Coke. I rarely eat popcorn or candy at the movies. And the prices at my local theatres are high, but not outrageously so.

  25. Jill Sorenson
    Mar 09, 2012 @ 17:05:10

    @sarah mayberry: Absolutely! Being desired is the ultimate turn on for women and I’m sure men like it too. There’s no bigger mood killer than a disinterested partner. The exaggerated alpha will do anything to have the heroine, to the point of stalking or sexual aggression. He does all the work to pursue her, win her over, arouse her. It’s the opposite of the female prostitute/male client dynamic, in which the woman must arouse and please the man. Maybe it’s even a reaction to patriarchy. The hero is enthralled by the heroine, so she has the sexual power.

    I don’t know if it’s a reflection of society or just the way women are wired, but I do agree that being desired as a key factor in female arousal.

  26. MaryK
    Mar 09, 2012 @ 17:31:06

    @Jill Sorenson: Interesting. This articulates why I, personally, would never propose to a man. I’d want proof, in the form of him proposing, that he actively wanted to marry me. Proof of my desirability as a life partner, I suppose.

  27. Alicia
    Mar 09, 2012 @ 19:42:10

    @Jane: There really isn’t enough case law. Aside from the usual suspect cases on copyright and fair use in general, I only really found one case that seemed to apply to the question I was answering (and it wasn’t referred to as fan fiction in that case, it was a screenplay). I think there is slightly more out there on the ethics, but of course I think that also comes more from fandom.

    I recoil at the Fifty and The Brady Bunch as well. I just can’t find it anything other than ethically wrong (though I’m marginally better with TBB just on the basis that it’s not really hiding it at all). I understand what you mean in the advancement of science and creativity. But, personally, I just don’t see the ‘promotion of progress’ in using someone else’s IP, which is why I felt copyright locked down on that so much – to prompt originality. Fifty so closely uses Edward and Bella and plot elements of Twilight, and now it’s an NYT #1 bestseller (and no one can understand how much typing that made me physically ill). It’ll probably only incite more people to do the same. At least, that’s the way I have come to view it. So, I’m as interested as you in seeing the discussion on this topic.

  28. anon
    Mar 09, 2012 @ 20:07:02

    @Jill Sorenson:

    “and I’m sure men like it too.”

    Nope. Men don’t care.

  29. Annette
    Mar 09, 2012 @ 20:30:56

    “What really turns women on is being so sexy that someone can’t help but transgress to get to you,” says Marta Meana, a professor of psychology at the University of Nevada.”

    Hmm. I’m looking forward to seeing this discussed in more depth. And I’m still pondering this. But I think a point to mention is that in real life, this sort of stalkerish, overly alpha, transgressive behavior is not as appealing as in the safe haven of fantasy. For many reasons. One is that the ‘someone’ in the quote above should probably be changed to ‘someone who is attractive, intelligent, rich, sexy…’ Unfortunately, the couple of times in my life that I experienced stalkerish behavior, that man was either not in the least someone I’d have wanted to be with, or someone I hardly knew. And the result was that the behavior was scary and uncomfortable rather than a turn on.

  30. Darlynne
    Mar 09, 2012 @ 21:21:12

    @Annette: I agree and that was my first thought after reading the initial quote. The reality of someone’s overwhelming need to be with, well, me, would make me highly uncomfortable in real life. Or to put it in another, less stalker-like way: Talk to any woman–retired and/or otherwise engaged outside the home–who has a retired partner and I guarantee that the idea of having someone’s undivided attention is not the fantasy one might expect.

    Should be an interesting discussion.

  31. SAO
    Mar 09, 2012 @ 22:56:16

    I’d say this: “What really turns women on is being so sexy that someone can’t help but transgress to get to you” is about as far opposite as you can get from “any warm female body would do, because he wants to get his rocks off/has beer goggles on/plans to fantasize about Angelina Jolie anyway”.

    Is it any wonder the first is appealing to women? And it’s hardly narcissism to want to be as far away from the second as possible.

  32. Merrian
    Mar 09, 2012 @ 23:58:58

    I read the word ‘narcissim’ used in this way and think that women’s sexual desires are being pathologised once again.

    I do feel that Sarah Mayberry #18 is on to something though with: “that being desired is a key part of being turned on for women”

  33. Melissa Blue
    Mar 10, 2012 @ 01:05:33

    @Merrian:

    I think being desired is a universal thing. Out of all the people you could choose, you choose me. As for men maybe not feeling the same, I don’t know about that theory. I’ve asked nosy questions for writing purposes. :) (Really it’s amazing how saying I’m a writer will just open people right up.)

    Yeah, there were a few I’m getting my rocks off who cares kind of answers, but unequivocally it’s that the woman was into the sex. By extension, no pun intended, she was into having sex with HIM. Now it may come across more territorial, but it’s the same in my opinion. You desire me.

    You can read it in romance novels. Now the heroine might want the hero to act all alpha-crazy with her. But, the hero gets a lot of objectification too. The heroine has never felt this way before and it’s because of him yada, yada.

    So this is my long-winded way of saying it’s all primitive.

  34. DS
    Mar 10, 2012 @ 11:07:53

    @Darlynne:

    Talk to any woman–retired and/or otherwise engaged outside the home–who has a retired partner and I guarantee that the idea of having someone’s undivided attention is not the fantasy one might expect.

    I had to laugh at this. Many of my female acquaintances have husbands who are approaching retirement and to a woman, they are dreading it.

  35. Patricia
    Mar 10, 2012 @ 11:09:53

    #32 Merrian:

    I read the word ‘narcissim’ used in this way and think that women’s sexual desires are being pathologised once again.

    Amen.

    But then, it might be true anyway. For the sake of this discussion it should have been made more clear than it has been, that every person -with the exception of people with pathologic personality disorders on the other side of the scale- has a narcisstic side. As Lynn said,

    That’s a different take on narcissism. I don’t think true narcissists need the obsession of another as their value comes strictly from their own opinion of themselves. You can ignore a narcissist completely and she’ll still know you are thinking about her, because why wouldn’t you.

    And we’re not talking about pathologic narcissicm, but simple narcissistic “urges”.

    * * *

    Something else I’m wondering about is whether or not the majority of these readers are the “Protagonists=Placeholder”-type or the “Protagonists=Relatable”-type, or something else altogether. Mhe. There aren’t enough case studies and numbers to be found. Surveys. We need more surveys.

  36. Jody W.
    Mar 10, 2012 @ 16:49:52

    Part of the appeal is likely that a hero’s heightened interest in YOU ONLY YOU means maybe THIS guy, this guy who is working so hard to catch you, will be the one who won’t cheat, lie, mistreat you, refuse to help around the house or change diapers, play golf all day, abuse you and/or the kids, spend all the money on stereo equipment while bitching at you about the grocery bill, ignore you, desert you, etc. Is that narcicism? The bondmating thing so popular in PNR often makes it physically and emotionally impossible for a couple to part ways. So, yeah. That’s an attractive “fantasy”, a partner who’ll stick with you, not to mention who thinks you’re delicious and fun to be around.

  37. Las
    Mar 10, 2012 @ 17:09:28

    @LG: Not just Harlequin Presents. I think the same thing could also be considered a potential appeal of the mate bond found in a lot of paranormal romance

    Oh, absolutely. I specified HP’s because the the vast majority of them are all about the alpha hero on steroids, but I think the appeal spans all subgenres.

    @Merrian: I read the word ‘narcissim’ used in this way and think that women’s sexual desires are being pathologised once again.

    I think you’re right. I completely ignored the implications of “narcissism” and focused more on: “What really turns women on is being so sexy that someone can’t help but transgress to get to you,” which is the most glaring example of stating the obvious I’ve come across in a long time. But, yeah, now I’m cringing at “narcissism.”

  38. Nonny
    Mar 11, 2012 @ 05:28:41

    (Note: Haven’t read the rest of the comments yet.)

    That’s an interesting take on why women like to read about these types of relationships. I suppose it makes sense, in a way. I don’t agree that it’s narcissism. I think it’s much more complex than that. I mean, when you consider that women as a general whole are told by society and media (and many of us, by family members) that we are worthless and undeserving unless we fit XYZ parameters (thin enough, beautiful enough, sexy enough) — I suppose it makes sense that women would be drawn to a fantasy in which a man considers them so worthwhile that he is doing all these things because he loves her so much. Even if they are in reality, unhealthy.

    I hadn’t really considered it from that angle, but that actually would also make sense why it’s a particularly strong trope among teenagers. Because teenagers are inundated with messages about how in order to be worth something, they have to be the perfect weight, height, perfect teeth, boobs just right, etc. I remember what it was like for me as a teen ten years ago, and I probably would have latched on to the fantasy of some uber-hot guy being that infatuated with plain Jane little me. Because, think about it, most of the women in these stories are very plain Jane and unassuming.

    One of the biggest complaints about Bella as a character is that she’s not particularly special, even at the beginning, when she’s not wrapped up and subsumed her identity into Edward. Maybe that’s part of what draws women and girls to her subconsciously — I mean, I know when I was 15, I didn’t feel like I was anything special. I probably would have identified a lot with bookworm Bella who wasn’t really an active force in her own life, sad to say.

    Definitely a lot of food for thought.

  39. Karen Knows Best » Dorchester Publishing Is Dead…And Up For Auction… And Screwing The Late Dawn Thompson
    Mar 11, 2012 @ 05:45:58

    [...] for the news via Dear Author, that they’re going up for auction, we’ll see how that pans out. I have no feeling on [...]

  40. Lynn S.
    Mar 11, 2012 @ 17:20:08

    @Jane: That will require a thinking hat instead of my off-the-cuff beret, won’t it? Darn it, I’m just narcissistic enough to think I look really good in a beret. I’ll email you some thoughts.

  41. Jami Gold
    Mar 11, 2012 @ 21:26:23

    @Jane: I had a huge discussion about the ethics of fan fiction, and in particular FSoG, on my blog this past week. (http://jamigold.com/2012/03/when-does-fan-fiction-cross-an-ethical-line/) The comment string turned out to be really interesting. Many of the fanfic author’s supporters, who, yes, did come to my blog, seemed to be readers-only.

    I think that’s a big part of why they can’t understand the ethical questions. They don’t know what an author usually goes through in creating a character, so to them, any little change, like a name or whatnot, means that the character isn’t the same and therefore the fanfic author isn’t stealing. However, authors know that character names and superficial details are meaningless compared to a character’s core essence, who they are inside, so authors have a different perspective as to where the inspired vs. stealing line falls.

    Personally, I think any smart fanfic author will pay attention to the authors’ perspective because they shouldn’t want to piss off their inspiration and risk a lawsuit. :)

  42. Tasha
    Mar 13, 2012 @ 17:18:45

    Dorchester has apparently posted this to their Facebook page:

    Not to worry, Dorchester Publishing has not closed. However, due to challenging economic conditions, we have decided to vacate our 200 Madison office and become a virtual business. Though the transition was not as seamless as we had hoped, our phone lines are back in working order and our email is still fully operational. Our new mailing address is:

    Dorchester Publishing and Dorchester Media
    105 East 34th Street, Box 175
    New York, New York 10016

    What is the future for Dorchester Publishing? We are currently in the process of entertaining offers from reputable publishing companies and look forward to making an announcement shortly. We recognize a sale to a strong publisher is in your best interest and look forward to informing you as soon as we close a deal. We apologize for our lack of communication during this transition and for any inconvenience this may have caused you.

    Their new mailing addy is apparently a UPS store.

  43. Linda Hilton
    Mar 13, 2012 @ 19:00:46

    @Tasha:

    Wait a minute. Stop the presses. (oh, wait, too late for that; they’re already stopped.)

    If “Dorchester Media” was sold last week to “FAA Investors LLC,” why are they sharing a UPS Store mailbox with “Dorchester Publishing”?

    Personally, I can’t imagine any “reputable” publisher buying Dorchester, and if Dorchester sells the assets and then files bankruptcy, wouldn’t the sale of assets be nullified and clawed back or something? Apparently they owe millions, so why not just bite the freakin’ bullet, declare bankruptcy, revert all the rights, and be done with it.

    What a bunch of douches.

  44. Wednesday News & Deals: Paypal Reverses Stance
    Mar 14, 2012 @ 10:01:10

    [...] Via Tasha [...]

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