Tuesday, June 7, 2011


I just have to vent for a minute.

Like many of you, my dear YA readers and writers, I got excited this past weekend, for the upcoming release of the first official Breaking Dawn trailer.

[cue applause and boos for respective lovers and haters]

Like I do with many much-anticipated books and movies, I posted the trailer on my fb page. NORMALLY, this action doesn't merit much of a response from anyone. Exhibit A: I was thrilled with the Water for Elephants release, but when posting my excitement about it on fb I got maybe 2 comments, at best. Exhibit B: I'm equally as excited to see The Help (which is coming out this summer) as I am for Breaking Dawn, but most people don't give a monkey's behind about The Help.  

So why, I must ask, is it that when I post a Breaking Dawn clip on fb, that suddenly all the haters seem to come out of the woodwork??

Yes, I admit, I felt the twinge of delicious anticipation at seeing the wedding invitation, squealed predictably  during the required Jacob-running-around-shirtless scene, and let out a sigh of giddy excitement at the sight of Bella was walking down the aisle with Charlie to an adoring Edward. And I must ask:

What's wrong with that?! 

Look, I get that there are more original story lines out there. I get that Shakespeare had a better grasp of the English language than Stephenie Meyer. And I get that--unlike Bella--when your boyfriend dumped you, it didn't hurt so much that you sat around like a sap for 6 months moping, which, of course, just goes to show how tough YOU are... [go ahead, pat yourself on the back].

But what does that have to do with me enjoying what I perceive as a good story?

People. I like Twilight. I like the Hunger Games. And I--most assuredly--am a Harry Potter fan (yes, I DID read HP 1-4 9 times before losing count). There's nothing wrong with being exited about a series (and all the good things that follow... ie: a movie franchise) if you really truly enjoy the story. And although the many haters of the world may mock and scorn me for my devotion to these beloved blockbusters, in my oh-so-humble opinion, one of the most ridiculous things is when a hater says:

"I just don't like it cause it's popular."

Okay, seriously? If you don't know what's idiotic and ironic about that statement I want you to go on a nice long drive and think about it until you have an answer.

In the meantime, can't I just enjoy my stories--however lame, predictable, badly written or sappy you may perceive them to be--in peace, please??

I'm interested in YOUR thoughts. What do you think about haters/lovers and hype surrounding popular blockbuster novels?


Ben and Heather Ashby said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
Ben and Heather Ashby said...

I am ridiculously excited for Breaking Dawn to come out. And I love Harry Potter. And the Hunger Games! I think all of them are great stories and I really don't have any idea why people have to be so absurd about hating them. If you don't like something that's fine, it's your opinion, but why bash on the people who do like them?? Why am I doing something wrong just because I like something that other people like too? It's seriously a mystery to me.

K. Elizabeth said...

I have never read the Harry Potter books, read Twilight about a year before it became popular and thought it was lame and cheesy, and won't read the Hunger Games. I have found that when things are hyped up so much, I go in to them with crazy expectations and then end up disappointed. Or... in the case of Twilight, I didn't like it the first time. However, because everyone was just going 'crazy in love' over it, I thought maybe I missed something, so I read it again. I was right the first time. But - to each their own. If you love it, love it. If you don't... so what? I don't not like something because it's popular, but I definitely approach with caution (especially when it involves half naked werewolves and teenage vampires).

S. L. Hennessy said...

I think it's just "cool" to hate it these days. Kind of like it's cool to fake tan and get skin cancer. Whatever, ignore the haters. If you like it, that's your business. And people who don't like it because it's "popular" - well that's just stupid. Shakespeare was popular.

Maggie said...

It's the internet. People love to hate things, especially when they can do it somewhat indirectly (via internet rather than to your face). I admit I don't look forward to the movie. I don't like the Twilight movies much, though I've seen them all so far (speaking of, I don't like the HP movies much either). They can still be enjoyable though!
Hmm, maybe the haters are trying to create balance? What's that saying, "The brighter the light, the darker the shadow?" The stronger the hype, the stronger the hate from those on the opposite end. Then there's those of us in the middle, who seem to be hated by both ends. o.O (At least, that's the impression I have.
There, my two cents!

Julie said...

Heather: its a mystery to me too! I wish I could just enjoy my stories without having someone breathing fire down my back for supposedly "conforming." Meh? Since when is liking a story conforming?!

Karen: agreed. Expectations can be so detrimental to an enjoyable experience. I find this often happens when I first read a book and THEN go to a movie ( : I usually end up NOT liking the movie because the book was so good! As a result, I've found that no expectations is the best way to go! And you're absolutely right that we should form our own opinions REGARDLESS of what the masses are saying.

Lauren: Haha! You crack me up! Shakespear was popular... I'm totally using that on the next hater who tells me he doesn't like it cause its popular ( :

Maggs: I never thought of it that way. You're probably right, though. I've never had a hater get in my face in person the way they do on the net. I suppose people feel like they can hide behind their words on the net and not deal with the consequences?

And I'm 100% in agreement with you... I liked the Twi and HP movies because I liked the books. I enjoyed the movies even though they weren't the best cinamatic creations ever. I ESPECIALLY remember thinking that about HP. It wasn't until these last few movies that I really actually started loving the movies (the first installment of HP7 was fab!) I suppose I still enjoy them, though, because I enjoy the books.

I thought about the balance thing too. Like because there are so many strong fans out there, the haters feel an obligation to be that much more vocal. Interesting thoughts!

Gypsy Girl said...

I am truly a blog stalker today (and at WORK of all things), but when I find a good blog and find myself nodding throughout an entire post, I just HAVE to comment. Hope that's not totally creepy. (I found a comment you left on Child Bride's blog [that a friend told me to read] and figured I'd probably like your blog as much as I liked your comment [totally do, btw] so I decided to give it a little look-see). Explanation much? Sorry, I get that from my mom.

Anyway, just wanted to say that I am shamelessly excited for The Help movie coming out this summer. LOVED that book. I have also found myslef clapping and squealing with excitement when I see a Breaking Dawn trailer pop up on a DVR'ed show. And then I rewind it and watch it again. All those haters are just jealous that they didn't join in on all that Jacob goodness. I am usually the type to jump on a small bandwagon before the book turns into a huge craze just so that I can say that I read it before everyone else even HEARD about it. But if I'm being totally honest, I don't really care if a book is a fad - I'm gonna read it and I'm most likely gonna love it. I just bought a Nook - that's how nerdy I am - and have a list longer than my list of FB friends of books I have read. I'm not ashamed. That's why I love coming across other unabashed book readers and trend followers. :)By the way, have you read The Book Thief? Good stuff.

Ok, I'm going to stop now. I could go on all day. Glad I could leave you a novel of a comment this morning. Thanks for letting me stalk you. Oh wait, you didn't let me, oops.

Julie said...

Gypsy: Hooray!! I love blog stalkers!! Does that make ME creepy too?? Hopefully not... but as a blog stalker myself, don't be surprised (or creeped out) if I begin frequenting YOUR blog too! Muahahahahaha... [that was my evil laugh]....

ANY-who... YAY! Another The Help lover! SO glad to hear I'm not alone in my love, OR in my anticipation for the movie. Doesn't it just look fab?! My fingers are crossed that it rocks (although, lets be honest, movies sadly and RARELY live up to their book counterparts...) Also, I most definitely HAVE read The Book Theif! So sad but SUCH a good read. Loved it! I can see we're going to be great book buddies...

Also, agree with you %100 on the book reading thing. I could really care less if a book is popular or not. If I'm interested, I'll read it. If I like it, I'm going to get excited about it! And it goes without saying that its more fun being excited about something when there are others to be excited with you... hence, my love of hype ( : Midnight releases, costume parties and fan clubs? Yes please!
It just irritates me to no end that haters can't let me enjoy my books and movies in peace. Its not like I'm bashing their choices!

A Nook, eh? I have yet to conform! But I must admit, my resolve is wearing down... your enthusiasm for it (yes, I did stalk your blog already and read your post) just adds to my growing list of reasons TO get one.

P.s. Love Child Bride. She's a great personal friend of mine and SO snarky and sarcastic ( : You can't go wrong reading her blog!

m. christine weber said...

I'm thoroughly exited for Breaking Dawn. And I'm not ashamed to admit that I'll probably cry. *sigh* Why NOT??? It's sweet and sad and a great emotional rollercoaster which is why I read the series in the first place. Am I a Twilight fanatic? No. But I AM a fun/sweet/good/entertaining story fanatic. And this one does it for me. As does HP and Hunger Games and...yeah, you get the point. I agree with you.

And I'm convinced that it's the "in" thing to not be into the "in" thing. Which is why I'm thinking of single-handedly bringing MC Hammer pants back in style. ;-P

Jess said...

I agree with you completely. There are plenty of people who think Dan Brown (of The Da Vinci Code) and John Grisham (too many novels to list) are crap writers, but that's just ridiculous. It's a different kind of writing--a very entertaining kind for a huge number of people. I don't get the haters...must be bitter writers who aren't published yet :) KIDDING OF COURSE!! In all seriousness, everyone is entitled to their opinion, but the fact is, all of these novels got the go-ahead from editors who have full-time jobs deciding what gets published. If people are really bothered by it, I suggest they change careers so that they can personally thwart the entrance of more "weak writing" into society :)

Julie said...

M. Christine: Amen! I also love the sweet, funny, sad story that IS our beloved Twilight. I think there is a fine line betwee obsession v. hype and excitment. Is it a little weird that teens want Robert Pattinson to bite them? Yeah, probably a little over the top. But excitment over the movie and book series?! I just don't understand the problem. Here's the thing... haters get excited too. So what's so special about their excitment v. mine?? Hmmmm?

I think you might be onto something with the "fad to be a hater" thing... a couple other people wondered that too. Hmmmm... [insert thinking face here]...

Jess: So true! I could go off and reiterate EVERYTHING you said... (I started to, but then my comment got too long!) And really? There's no need! Well spoken!

P.s. I was actually thinking the haters might possibly consist of a large conspiratal-society type crowd of rejected writers. Haha. Looks like we were thinking the same thing! And wouldn't that would make a good story... ( :

Terry Lee-Rosing said...

Why do people use the word hate? I refuse to use the word, don't like it. What I say (I feel) brings it to me, don't want it. I also don't use the word fear or afraid. Lived most of my life in fear and worked very hard to let go of that. I may say I"m concerned, but not I'm afraid.

I've also noticed on my granddaughter's FB page, the word "loser" is used abundantly. Once again, don't like it.

Just my opinion.

How many different book sections are there at Barnes & Noble? And why is that? Different people like different things. Let It Be, haters.

PS - I'm also a HP & Twilight junky though most people my age "don't bother." My response? I.Do.Not.Care. With a smiley face, of course:)

Julie said...

Terry: words have power, there's no doubt about it... I think people forget or underestimate that power sometimes. The written word? Yeah. It's big.

P.s. Smiley right back at ya ( ; with a wink!

Karen and Matt said...

It looks like this discussion has been going on for a while, and I have to admit that I haven't read all the comments. Everyone is so positive on your blog, Julie, it's awesome! But I thought I would throw my two cents in.

First of all, everyone is entitled to their own opinions and views, and I don't view anyone different for liking the books and/or movies from the Twilight Saga. Truthfully, I couldn't put the books down! It has been years since a book caught me like that! (Until Breaking Dawn, which I found to be, personally, offensive and a let down.)

However, the more I pondered it, I learned absolutely nothing from reading the books. They were pure entertainment with very little substance. I would never admit to it, until I became a teacher. I watched cute, innocent, 10 year old girls change. (I also watched mothers start obsessing over Edward or Jacob --shirt on, shirt off, kind of stuff.)

The young girls who read and really get into that saga change. They start thinking about people differently and acting towards each other and boys differently, and it isn't healthy. Quite frankly, the relationships portrayed in the books are not healthy.

I was all for the books, iffy on the movies, until I watched "my" girls go through this. Once I did, I have to admit, I ceased liking the saga. I cannot promote it.

But this is my opinion. And opinions are always one-sided, right? :)


Julie said...

Karen: Absolutely! People are always entitled to their opinions! Which is basically what I'm trying to promote... it just irritates me when haters start criticizing me for my reading choices. My tasetes in books are wide and varried, and yes, include a collection of shallow but entertaining stories. But lets be honest, I could probably do some criticizing of my own if I got a peek at THEIR reading lists!!

I think what you're talking about it what my brother Paul and I were discussing, which is the fine line between hype/excitment and obsession.

I personally find NOTHING wrong with getting excited over a good book and movie franchise. Everything from midnight book releases, costume parties and fan clubs are all in good fun, in my opinion.

The problems start arising when you become obsessed with the books, which is what I think you're expressing concern over. No doubt about it, people shouldn't base and pattern their lives after a fictional novel about werewovels and vampires! There are definitely some serious issues with doing something like that.

But is that Stephenie Meyer's fault? I don't think so. Some of the Twi-obsession is over the top, yes. But I don't think you can place the blame in the author's lap. After all... there are PLENTY of euqually entertaining/substance-lacking books on the market that haven't sparked as much obsession. Heck, some of the things I write are purely fictional for no other purpose than for entertainment. And I certainly wouldn't want someone blaming my writing for a teen-obsessed craze that I in no way intended!

So yes, I see your argument: Twilight obsession is a problem. But I don't necessarily you can blame the author or even the books for that. To me, that issue lies in the laps of the teens.

As for me, I'm not obsessed with the books. But a little excitment and enjoyment over a perfectly "shallow" but entertaining story? Please... bring it on!

Karen and Matt said...

I love you, Julie! I agree with what you said except for in regard to Breaking Dawn. But that is because of my own very strong opinions about that book. ;) Kind of like my strong opinions about the last Harry Potter movie interpretation.

Julie said...

Love you too, Karen ( : And I'll leave you with your strong opinions... we're all entitled to them, after all!!

Although, I AM curious... you didn't like the last HP movie? I thought it was hands down the best of the bunch! Love, love, LOVED it!