I’ll be Leaving Dave Freer Alone

Dave, it appears, is feeling put upon in his latest column. https://web.archive.org/web/20180205101122/https://madgeniusclub.com/2018/02/05/22200/

He complains about Jim Hines and rambles about tarantulas and people putting things in their bum and compares himself to a victim of a witchhunt. It would be tempting to ask him ‘Seriously Dave, what the f_ck?’ At this point not even Vox Day is buying the ‘Fieldsy’ theory – it pretty much collapsed once people started looking at it.

Reading that column, I’m just sort of sad. I tried to let the guy know early in the piece that he was setting himself up to end up in this situation. Instead, he made claims he couldn’t back up, told obvious untruths to his colleagues and then launched into some really unpleasant attacks on a family that has done him no harm at all.

That column is what he’s left with – that’s the writer he is. There’s no riposte or insult that I could write that would be as bad as the ones Dave imagines he is recieving. He lets those imaginary demons torturer him and attempting to persuade him that the demons aren’t there only feeds his faith that they are plotting his demise.

So I suggest let him be. If you a kind person you can’t help him and if you are unkind person you won’t be as cruel as his own imaginings.

Addendum:

On the previous double-down post at Mad Genius, Dave has deleted comments from people posting links to Lou Antonelli’s retraction. He has added his own comment:

“We seem to be having an affliction of determined trolls – [CF: some names], as well as a rash of psuedonyms some sharing IP addresses. All of these people have been set conditions for posting again – posting a full list of how they I’ve seen no signs of compliance. Let me say it in small words and short sentences.

There are many young families among the Sad Puppies who have suffered attacks on their reputations and careers – and with infinitely less substance or reason, and with far more damage than the largely self-inflicted ‘injury’ you’re being hysterical about. People who called Brad’s wife and kid ‘shields’. People who called Sarah a Mormon man. People who called me a liar when I presented verifiable figures showing the level of ideological discrimination. People who called us Nazis, racists, homophobes, misogynists – all of which even if there was a total absence of evidence for, you and your friends screamed from the rooftops, got published in the press right across the world. Yes. When threatened with legal action we got the initial story retracted, but it appeared in papers across the world. That’s just the tip of the iceberg of what was hurled at us. Where were you then, thinking about the young families being hurt? Not one of the crew now screaming what a wicked person I am stood up and lead, and did what you claim I should do. But you’re better than us? You’re showing us morality?

Show me how it should be done.

In the meanwhile I’ll continue to spam-list your comments, which will eventually result in you not just failing to post here, but unable to post on wordpress anywhere.”

Again – I’d submit that there is no kindness that he will accept in this matter and there are no harsh words that can be said to him that will reach the level of the persecution he is currently imagining for himself.

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104 thoughts on “I’ll be Leaving Dave Freer Alone

  1. TBH, even if I wanted to ignore my ban and post something under a random name, what would I actually say? “Ummm, Dave, what’s all this about gerbils?” Possibly asking why he’s saying something incoherent about Hines but nothing about the Meadows might get in the direction of a point, but I doubt it.

    Liked by 4 people

    1. Yes, what was that gerbil thing all about? As far as I could parse Freer, he is disturbed by the fact that Jim Hines reenacted urban fnatasy book covers a couple of years ago, occasionally dressed in women’s clothes. And while I had my issues with that particularly project, Freer’s obsession with that years after the fact is odd, to say the least.

      Liked by 3 people

      1. He’s referring to a long-standing anti-gay slur that has be hung on Richard Gere since the 1980s. https://www.snopes.com/risque/homosexuality/gerbil.asp

        The claim is that gay men (and the attack was used to “prove” Gere was gay by saying that he had had an “emergency gerbil-ectomy” after one had gotten stuck inside of him) stuff gerbils into their rectums for sexual gratification. There is no substance to this, as there has never been a reported case of it happening. I guess that makes referencing it about par for the course for Freer though, since almost every assertion he’s made in the last few weeks has been false.

        Liked by 4 people

      2. It’s truly amazing how many homophobes are so deeply, unhealthily obsessed with gay sex. They think about gay sex more often than we queer people do.

        Liked by 3 people

  2. Freer’s comment is an amazing piece of dishonest self-justification. He is claiming that his false attacks on Foz and Toby are justified because of a collection of slights that he claims were made against his fellow Pups. In addition to being the most incredibly slimy kind of justification one can make for his lashing out at some people who did nothing to him, the other problem is that most of the slights he is asserting he and his fellow travelers suffered are either complete fabrications or are being distorted in his recounting to such a degree that they may as well be fabrications. He’s basically lying about the insults he and other Pups have “suffered” and using it to justify attacking people who have never done anything to him.

    I have no sympathy for Freer. He’s loathsome and in a just world everything he owns would be forfeit to the Meadows family.

    Liked by 6 people

      1. I’m reminded of watching some of the flailing of mid-time Gamergate as things got published. (I followed mostly on ‘We Hunted the Mammoth’.) It fairly quickly became obvious that these people were so used to relatively ephemeral places like IRC and Reddit, that they didn’t seem to grasp that when they posted new comments on a blog, that everybody else could go back and look at their previous comments in the thread and point out the goalpost-shifting. It was the whole ‘perpetual now’ thing in real-time. Sure, it probably wasn’t purely a result of the places they were hanging out being like that (we see enough people who assume that nobody remembers what they said previously who should be old enough to know better), but that couldn’t have helped.

        Of course, once actual IRC chat logs started circulating around, it also became obvious that they also had no idea what they looked like to anybody not steeped in their toxic little culture. Crying that previous logs were misunderstood because of ‘context’ doesn’t help when you post the rest of the context yourself and it makes you look even worse.

        Liked by 2 people

  3. It is interesting that in the minds of MadGeniusClubwriters, there is this constant focus on the conflict between the big five publishers and authors. Almost a class war rethoric. I wonder if part of the aggression against you, is that Freer thinks you are a hyppocrite, wh claims to be a socialist, but in his mind is part of the oppressive ruling publisher class who oppresses the writing proletariat. I think they totally fail to see that criticism against the puppies has nothing to do with defending the big five, and most of nonpuppy fandom wouldnt care if trafitional publishers disapeared, as long as book quality was not affected.

    Liked by 4 people

    1. Amusingly, it’s a pro self-pub rhetoric that requires them to engage in special pleading about why Baen is different, and elide that several of them have published with the Big 5.
      There’s almost a kernel of truth in there, in that for a long time self-pub was the domain of vanity presses and scammers and in places its reputation is still stuck – unfairly – in the past.
      And yes, absolutely, I couldn’t care less if publishers disappeared so long as I got good words on pages that had been properly edited and proofed. It’s just that publishers are a handy middleman in getting that done and I don’t see that going away. I see self-pub as introducing valuable competition that’ll work against any monopolistic effects from publishers consolidating, and I’m quite happy that it’s part of the bookselling landscape.

      Liked by 4 people

      1. No, self-publishing was NOT for a long time the “domain” of vanity presses and scammers. Self-publishing is an old and venerable tradition that produced plenty of print bestsellers long before Amazon juiced the e-book market. There were vanity presses and some scams, but there were also plenty of perfectly respectable printers and binders who served self-publishing authors, many of whom then turned their self-publishing into small presses. For publishers, self-publishing authors and small presses are the farm teams — if a book does well in those venues, bigger publishers try to get the rights for reprint for wider distribution, or rights to the author’s next work to build on their audience. Big publishers have never been in competition with self-publishing authors (especially in fiction because fiction authors do not directly compete with each other but instead help each other sell); they use them as a pool of opportunity. They don’t want to destroy self-publishing, since if self-publishing authors take the production costs on themselves and then do well, the publisher has much of the initial launching work done for them if they strike up a reprint deal — that’s a proven win that is a safer risk than launching a totally new author themselves. So much so that the big publishers have developed services and platforms for self-publishing authors.

        The fact that Amazon providing a better platform for e-books that made the production costs of self-publishing substantially less and the distribution easier and wider than the self-publishing industry of before certainly helped out self-publishing authors, though Amazon’s determination to maintain a monopoly on the self-publishing e-book market has somewhat choked that market from growing further for now. But it’s not going to topple the big publishers who are part of multi-national multimedia corporations. That fantasy, used to sell services to self-publishing authors, is something the self-pub industry is moving on from now that the e-book market is fully established, but diehards, like the pups I guess, continue to sell it, obscuring real and more pressing issues that self-pub authors face. The obsession with pretending to be outcast rebels of the publishing world means they limit their own growth, but then again, so does their bigotry, which has much more violent outcomes.

        Liked by 5 people

      2. Indeed. I’ve been doing formatting and such for books people have printed through Lightning Source (called something else now) and others, for a little over ten years now. If anybody needs my services, do let me know! I mention it because it’s getting longer between my repeat clients, and I fear they have written themselves dry.

        Liked by 2 people

    2. This whole “Big Five publishers versus honest indie authors” rhetoric is standard talk on self-publishing blogs and forums and part of the reason why I no longer visit such places as often as I used to. Occasionally, you also get anti-elitism and anti-intellectualism at self-publishing blogs and forums – I’ve got into a couple of fights because of that. However, the mad geniuses also mix in their usual persecution narrative as well as their firm belief that the real readers (TM) are on their side, which makes their screeds a lot more toxic than other rants of that kind.

      Liked by 2 people

      1. I can offhand list plenty of indie writers who were more or less vocally opposed to the pups and who joined the coalition to beat them. I’ve personally had several indie SFF writers thank me for pointing out the sad/rabid puppy kerfuffle to them via my weekly link round-up, which is read by a lot of indie writers. Not all indies are puppies, just as not all indies are write-to-market types.

        Liked by 3 people

    3. “is that Freer thinks you are a hyppocrite, wh claims to be a socialist, but in his mind is part of the oppressive ruling publisher class who oppresses the writing proletariat.”

      I don’t think that quite fits – Freer is very adamant in placing himself on the right and all his enemies on the left, and I’ve never seen any hints that he consciously criticizes his enemies for being hypocritical in the socialism.

      I noticed a similar thing in a previous post by Freer during this flap: He spent a lot of words saying a) the SF establishment, including SFWA, is run by evil leftists, and b) SFWA cozies too much up to publishers, therefore SFWA is doing a poor job as a union and basically betrays its members, therefore Paolonelli’s new SF creators guild is necessary.

      So yes, I agree that there’s a more than passing similariy between Freer’s criticism of “the SF establishment” and leftist class war rhetoric. However I think it’s more another sign of his incoherence than a useful way to make sense of his reasoning.

      Liked by 2 people

      1. And yet unions are evil socialist constructions that work against the will of the free market!

        I’m not sure how Dck’s new union is going to help writers against The Man since they started off by talking about how evil all the publishers are. And dissing other writers, and fans. So it’s gonna be a bunch of right-wing SFF self-publishers forming a mutual aid society? How does that differ from Puppies or MGC?

        And, of course, still no word on who’s actually doing the work, and no sign of work being done. Think of how much they could have done with the webpage and manifestos if they hadn’t wasted so much time dogpiling on Cam and the Meadowses.

        Liked by 1 person

  4. I think I’ve run out of even vaguely funny or clever things to say about Dave Freer. So I must fall back on the golden rule – if you can’t think of something nice to say, don’t say anything.

    So. Dave Freer… occupies a not unreasonable amount of space… for a man of his size. I think that’s all I’ve got left.

    Liked by 4 people

  5. “People who called us Nazis, racists, homophobes, misogynists…”

    Dave ought not to be surprised that people call him out on his actions. If he didn’t want to be called those things he should have thought long and hard before making Nazi, racist, homophobic and misogynistic noises where other people could hear them. And let us have none of this “total absence of evidence” nonsense. The historical record has plenty of evidence of many of the sad-rabids displaying all those behaviours and more, and also of them not speaking up to denounce their peers on multiple occasions. That especially includes how Freer treated Foz within the past month. He cannot credibly claim that there’s no evidence for that.

    If Freer wants to remain in his persecution fantasy bubble, then he is welcome to do so. Just don’t come complaining to us when your book sales tank because we see you for what you are and decide to take our money elsewhere, Dave. It’s just your precious free market forces at work.

    Liked by 3 people

  6. What the hell was all that pointless ramble supposed to mean, anyway? If I ever was inclined to read any of his books (which I’m not) that would not encourage me to do so.

    Yeah, it’s sad. Let’s let him flail away into the sunset.

    Liked by 2 people

    1. Dave Freer in particular would probably be better served by not blogging, because his rambling style would not make me inclined to give his books a try, even if he were not beset by raging paranoia.

      Liked by 3 people

    2. That blog of Freer’s is a rambling, incoherent, self-pitying, somewhat paranoid, malicious, hate-mongering tantrum full of sub-references that are bewilderingly obscure and/or baldly offensive.

      So it’s just as well that no one seriously thought he might use this occasion to apologize for his appalling behavior.

      I agree with Camestros’ assessment. Based on his public behavior and rhetoric, Freer appears, by choice, to be someone whom a kind person can’t help and whom an unkind person can’t hurt more than he hurts himself.

      Liked by 5 people

      1. He was raving at me once – at Larry C’s blog I think – about me trying to destroy his career. Quite how I could even have begun to do that I don’t know (& at this point he must, on reflection, have already been convinced I was an obscure philosophy lecturer)

        Liked by 3 people

      2. It’s well known that disagreeing with someone *with evidence* is amongst the most heinous of crimes, surpassed only if that evidence involves accurately quoting what they’ve previously said.

        Liked by 3 people

      3. “He was raving at me once – at Larry C’s blog I think – about me trying to destroy his career. Quite how I could even have begun to do that I don’t know”

        Well, yes, that would be my question: HOW??

        Liked by 3 people

      4. Ooh, ooh, I got this one maybe. It’s in the victim publishing deals part. Essentially, the big publishers are going to give all the book deals to the marginalized who cry victim so that nothing but elite academic never worked a manual labor job SJW fiction has a shot or gets any attention, thanks to the liberal mafia, even though their stuff is not popular, just touted as such thanks to social pressure and subterfuge. And so bloggers like Camestros are working to crowd hard-working properly conservative authors like Freer out in favor of queer people and other dilettantes, destroying “Western” civilization and his career by labeling him an outcast bigot who is not part of the in-crowd, etc.

        Liked by 3 people

      5. Apparently I drastically underestimate the influence that Australian university philosophy departments have on commercial publishing in the US, the primary market of Freer’s publisher.

        Liked by 4 people

  7. I’m done, too. I was hoping to pressure him into admitting he was wrong in the hopes it would end this particularly incompetent doxxing attempt, but at this point he’s far beyond even doubling down.

    Liked by 3 people

  8. O.K. Two questions about Freer’s latest screed. I’ve watched the puppybattles more or less at random for the last few years, and therefore may not be up on the minutia of them. But 2 phrases really caught my attention:

    1) “the largely self-inflicted ‘injury’ you’re being hysterical about”. Is he actually suggesting that the unwarranted attacks on Foz Meadows, her husband and her family were somehow ‘self-inflicted’? Did I miss something? Or is this as flat out wrong as I suspect?

    2) “When threatened with legal action we got the initial story retracted, but it appeared in papers across the world.” What story? And what retraction? And what threatened legal action? I remember the whole Irene Gallo thing, but that wasn’t a story, was it? It was a Facebook post. And I don’t remember legal action resulting in retractions, either. Did someone post an article claiming that one of the Pups was a child-abusing monster and then had to retract the same upon internet outrage? I can’t remember that at all. Or is my memory faulty?

    Please advise.

    Thanks.

    Liked by 3 people

    1. 1. I assume he is sticking with his Fieldsy theory
      2. Entertainment Weekly ran a story just after the 2015 nominations were released. It was full of errors and was quickly retracted. Dave believes that PNH got EW to publish the story and the errors were deliberate lies. In truth it was obviously just incompetence. Most of the actual mainstream press reporting of the Puppies was reasonably accurate in the circumstances. I very much doubt that legal action by the pups took place but I might be wrong.

      Liked by 3 people

      1. Entertainment Weekly regularly takes dictation from me. I have to remember to set aside an hour each week in which to tell them what to publish, or they won’t know what to do with themselves.

        Liked by 5 people

    2. Re (1) I suspect he’s continuing his previous argument that his scurrilous comparisons of the Meadows family to molesters aren’t really his fault because if everyone hadn’t noticed and made a big deal of how reprehensible it was then no-one would have known he said it.

      Liked by 4 people

    3. I guess it’s about that Entertainment Weekly article, which was actually incorrect, though I still wonder why the puppies are still so upset about one single article almost three years later. The puppies were also upset about the Guardian’s coverage, but they couldn’t get any retractions there, because it was not incorrect, since Damien Walter, David Barnett and Adam Roberts (who all get conflated into “Damien Walter – we hate him” in the puppies’ minds) know their stuff.

      Liked by 2 people

  9. With apologies to the Soup Dragons…

    I’m Freer I say what I want any old time
    I said I’m Freer to say what I want any old time
    I say love me, notice me
    Love me, notice me
    ‘Cause I’m Freer to hurt who I want any old time
    And I’m Freer to flame who I choose any old time
    I say love me, hold me
    Love me, hold me
    ‘Cause I’m Freer

    Liked by 2 people

    1. My apologies go out to Pete Townshend

      I’m Freer
      I’m Freer
      And Freerdom tastes of unreality
      I’m Freer
      I’m Freer
      An’ I’m waiting for you to follow me

      If I told you what it takes
      To reach the lieest lie
      You’d laugh and say ‘nothing’s that simple’
      But I’ve been told many times before
      Messiahs pointed to the door
      And no puppies had the brains to leave the temple!

      I’m Freer
      I’m Freer
      And Freerdom tastes of unreality
      I’m Freer
      I’m Freer
      An’ I’m waiting for you to follow me

      How can we follow?
      How can we follow?

      Liked by 3 people

  10. The Puppies attacked authors and their families out of the blue for no reason, accusing them of crimes and fraud. They spewed bigoted slurs and wilder and wilder claims about anybody who called them out on their attacks. They sicked violent Gamergater afficionados on the authors and their families with no regard for their safety. That brought the attention of the press and their only defense for attacking people and putting them in danger was that they swore those authors were bad and people shouldn’t have an angry response to anything they said or did. If they did, it wasn’t a defense to an attack, but an attack, as if they’d done nothing.

    David Freer did the exact same thing — he chose to target a queer Australian author and attacked her for no reason, sicking many of his buddies on her and her family online, accusing her of probably being a fraud and a pedophile, and hoping that someone would violently hurt her and her family or that her husband would get fired from his wilder and wilder claims. He threatened her, he spewed bigotry about LGBTQ people, and then whines about how people are angry about it and that’s mean.

    Freer is using the same political strategy of attack, the goal of which is to see just how far they can get away with things. They try to undermine civil rights, delegitimize the idea of equality, and to perpetuate violence and fear for marginalized people like Foz Meadows. They bang on the war drums and claim they are only attacking because the people they picked are threatening them by pretty much existing. When people stand up to them, they retreat — but only a so far as they think they have to. And sometimes they are auditioning — proving street cred for right wing media and organizations.

    That’s why Antonelli’s apology is pretty much bunk. He’ll be back again, joining in on another attack on an author and talking about how marginalized people are trying to hurt him, seeing what he can get away with. And Freer is not going to be ignored or let go. He will be back, picking probably queer authors and publishing figures to attack since that’s his main bigotry, and seeing again what he can push and for how long. He’ll call Camestros Fieldsy for several more years, even though he was never much interested in Camestros in the first place. They may abandon an attack if it doesn’t serve them any further, but they’ll do it again. And they’ll complain that they did nothing wrong when they attacked and that people’s angry responses to their attacks is evidence of conspiracy against them and justification for their next attack. (Right now they’re trying to get a few more shots at Hines as they subside.)

    There’s no one right way to respond to such attack strategies. People have to decide what they can manage. Standing up to the attacks and advocating for equality when they occur helps, but it’s also of course an energy drain, which is one of the main reasons for the attacks. The Net makes it very easy to do it again and again, so they will. Any new advancement of civil rights is to them a threat, even when it’s beneficial to their kids and they’ve accepted past advancements of civil rights, and so they just start taking pot-shots. And then eventually, after they’ve done whatever damage they can manage, they’ll pretend they never did anything (“these are not the droids you’re looking for”) even though the Net offers ample evidence in print that they did. That is also an attack strategy, to see if they can get away with historical erasure from people’s simple exhaustion. It’s a saddening thing of people taught a very narrow, vicious view of the world when they were younger and they can’t give it up, no matter how much damage it does to them or others. That is an inner demon, I guess, but I’m not sure how much it it torturing them compared with how much harm they do to others.

    Liked by 5 people

    1. What the puppies and their Gamergate and alt-right pals are trying to do is silence any voices they don’t like via attacks and intimidation. It’s not just that they don’t like certain books and authors (and videogames and movies and TV shows and comics and their creators), they don’t even want these works to exist or if they exist, they want to remove them from the genre. Brad Torgersen said as much in his Nutty Nuggets post three years ago and he’s far from the worst of the bunch.

      Which makes it doubly ironic that the puppies constantly yell that people are trying to silence them, since no one wants to stop VD, JCW, JDA, Correia, Freer, Hoyt, Torgersen et all from writing and publishing, we merely don’t want to read their stuff.

      Liked by 2 people

      1. That’s a very typical bully tactic; They claim that their victims are doing exactly what they’re doing. Psychologists call it “Projection”.

        Liked by 2 people

    2. Fear and ignorance — they’d rather bully than up their own game, and they deny things they said even when there’s plenty of record that they did. They’ve got the memory of elephants for slights they’ve entirely imagined, and the memory of goldfish for harm and/or stupidity they actually did.

      Even if they wanted to change, I’m not sure there’s a shrink in the world who could help them erase that much mental and emotional damage. Or even get them to realize when NOT to double down publicly.

      Liked by 1 person

  11. The MGC/Puppy attitude that they’re woke–or even slightly unusual–because they (or some of them) self-publish comes across as blinkered. Whereas self-publishing was controversial 6-7 years ago, times have moved on very rapidly, and it’s commonplace today.

    I’m a longtime member of NINC (an organization for career novelists, founded in 1989). We currently have about 900 members, mostly (but not only) in North America. Figures from our most recent internal survey, as posted on our website:

    – the average NINC member has published 24 novels
    – 72% of NINC members are traditionally published
    – 85% of NINC members are self-published

    Note the overlap.

    That means that out of 900 multi-published novelists, about 3/4 of whom have dealt with and/or currently deal with traditional publishers, only 15% of us DON’T self-publish. (Anecdotally, among the members I know personally who don’t self-publish, it’s for logistical reasons (they’re really busy).) And more than 25% of the career novelists in the org are =strictly= indie.

    I know that sf/f often tends to be behind the times, including with regard to self-publishing (and, yes, I do still read and hear ignorant remarks about self-publishing among sf/f writers, readers, and editors); but I can nonetheless think of many self-publishing sf/f writers (who are NOT part of the MGC/Puppy crowd)–including, btw, (but certainly not limited to) the late great Ursula Le Guin, who was a member of Bookview Cafe, the self-publishing co-op that has a couple of dozen sf/f writers).

    Whatever distinguishes the MGCers/Puppies (I would say it is their behavior), it’s certainly not self-publishing, which is a widespread practice among writers, including among sf/f writers.

    Liked by 5 people

    1. Laura, I had a friend who published on floppy discs in the 90s. There were co-ops like BVC where you could get an e-catalog and make your selections from there (You still had to send them some sort of paper, but I think they took credit cards if you wrote it all down). Or you could also subscribe to the periodical edition, where for a set price, you got all the books/stories published in that time period. My friend wrote contemporary romance, but there was also SF and mystery; friend wrote a very nice SF first contact romance. They later expanded into formatting so you could read on Palm Pilots. Which is how I read the SF romance, one tiny page at a time.

      So self-publishing via the internet and electronic devices was around long before Amazon. Long before Puppies.

      Liked by 1 person

      1. “So self-publishing via the internet and electronic devices was around long before Amazon.””

        Well, yes, it was around, but it wasn’t commercially relevant. In any case, my point was not that self-publishing never existed before Amazon. My point was that the MGCers/Puppies appear to view themselves as outliers because some of them self-publish; whereas, in reality, a substantial percentage of career writers self-publish these days.

        Liked by 2 people

    2. In many ways, the mad geniuses still seem to be stuck in the early days of easy self-publishing via Amazon KDP with their whole “We’re so rebellious and we’re going to bring down the Big Five and traditional publishing” rhetoric, totally unaware that many people are self-publishing these days and it’s not rebellious, it’s business.

      Liked by 2 people

      1. And your average Kindle reader has no idea of Big 5 vs. small press vs. self-pub. All the books look the same and they just push the button to buy and read. They don’t care.

        I’d say there are a LOT more self-pub in ebooks than Big 5 — certainly in the less than $7.99 space. Full of authors who were there long before Puppies, and authors who are way more successful. Who’ve learned to change with the times. KDP and KU change all the time, so strategies have to as well. Posturing about how REBELLIOUS!!! you are doesn’t get it done.

        Just like picking stupid fights on the internet and boasting about how awesome they are doesn’t get it done.

        Liked by 1 person

      2. That’s another thing. With the possible exception of Nick Cole, none of the puppies and/or mad geniuses are actually big names in self-published SFF. Yes, certain SFF subgenres in the Kindle store are dominated by nutty nuggets, but it’s not puppy nutty nuggets.

        Liked by 1 person

      3. Cora, I started a reply to you yesterday and then my computer ate it.

        Anyway, the gist is that I bet, say, Patty Jansen (sub in C. Gockel, or many others) outsells pups. Probably several of them combined. Heck, Foz probably outsells them, which makes them madder.

        The pups/mgc aren’t big sellers in Kindle even in the Nuttiest Nuggety subgenres of Manly Men With Spaceships, Space Marines vs. Aliens, Muscle Barbarians and Bikini Babes, Post-Apocalypse With Guns, etc. Not even in explicitly right-wing Nuggety subgenres. They’re being outsold by any number of other write-to-market indies. No matter how much or how little a reader is paying, they’re still not going to spend for something they don’t like. And since 99% of the Kindle-using public has no idea who the hell they are, nor what their stupid grievances against “The Man” are*, nor the whole kerfuffle, they’re failing in the absolutely level marketplace of ideas.

        The free market has spoken, and apparently their silent “majority” is silent even in the privacy of their own home and bank account.

        ——————————–

        * and FFS, really? Jeff Bezos isn’t The Man? He’s the richest person in history at this point! He has a lock on bookselling, fancy overpriced food, and geez, check Wiki. He’s in the Bilderberg Group, about which right-wing conspiracy theories abound. He’s put up money in favor of same-sex marriage and the Dreamers, and he really doesn’t like Trump. He’s the guy the pups/mgc ought to be railing against instead of worshiping.

        Patrick/Tor is small, nay, sub-atomic potatoes compared to him.

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      4. One of the many things that really upset Dave was the times I pointed out that Sad Puppies 3 promoted books by Big Publishing – including *Tor/Macmillan. Indeed both Puppy campaigns worked to get Tor a Best Novel Hugo win in various ways.

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      5. @Lurkertype:
        Not to mention that:
        A) when you’re using all your creative and mental energy building and maintaining conspiracy theories, that doesn’t leave you a lot of time to work at writing things that other people will actually understand and want to read, and
        B) once you’ve entered that sort of mindset of refusing to admit that you might be wrong, you tend not to improve your craft much.

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      6. I think there’s a sort of evolution struggle within the Sad Puppies communities. The whole thing was started at its core by established authors who published with Baen, Tor, Simon & Schuster, etc. They weren’t that heavily indie and they weren’t putting up a full slate of indie either. The supposed war against Tor was mainly an excuse for what they were trying to do with the Hugos. And then they had to frame it as all the big publishers out to get them and Baen, which made very little sense, to keep that going. Then you had Beale and his publishing house and site which gave a bunch of indie writers opportunities and those ones have been subsequently banging on about how it’s an indie thing. So you have multiple directions going on and various groups adorning themselves with emotional animal names, which keeps making me think of Monty Python — “And now for something completely different!” They join together when they’re attacking someone, but they are all sort of wandering around with their own goals that don’t necessarily match.

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      7. @Kat Goodwin:
        There’s likely some of that, too.

        Someone was pointing out (on another blog in response to the recent blow-up between ‘Sargon of Akkad’ and alt-righters because they were being openly Nazi and he insists he isn’t despite supporting 90% of what they want) that the idea that the right is more united than the left isn’t really true, that many of them are just better at playing along until they think they have what they want.

        Basically, subgroups on the left tend to treat each other as (potentially) well-meaning but not understanding the real situation, which leads to a lot of open arguing. But subgroups on the right tend to treat each other as useful idiots to be disposed of once they have power, which leads to alternating between marching in lockstep and internal purges.

        Gross oversimplification, of course,

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      8. I think it’s a little less pragmatic than that, though pragmaticism is definitely a part of authoritarianism. But it’s more that they look at the world, from that authoritarian perspective, as a continual status dominance contest — someone is one up and someone is one down. There’s a hierarchy, which for some of them they view as innate to humans, rather than the idea of real equality for all or full cooperation among peoples. So “the Left” is seen as trying to get one up and smush the rightwards folk one down. And they will sometimes see their fellows on “the Right” as trying to one up and dominate them, and thus get into a battle of who is going to be in charge or has the most authoritative voice. This Sargon guy apparently got dissed by Richard Spenser who claimed to have beaten him in some argument — one up and Sargon one down. And Spenser leads the neo-Nazi white supremacists in the alt right, a good chunk of them anyway. So Sargon is separating from what he sees as bad press that will place him one down and also smushing rivals one down to restore his status as a proper leader on the alt right. (Which is going to fail, because this is the best chance for neo-Nazis to feel one up in years, so they’ll relentlessly attack him.)

        That’s why the Puppies could not admit they screwed up in the attack on Foz Meadows — that would put them one down and the liberals and gay people supposedly one up. Instead, Antonelli admits only to a geographical error, never mind his accusation that Camestros wanted to kill him and his lack of repudiation at the false claim that Meadows is probably a pedophile. And the rest just slink off saying they’re tired of the discussion, etc. Freer couldn’t really do that since he clearly engineered the whole attack on a fake claim, so he ended up declaring that the sodomite liberals had pushed themselves one up (the evil cabal that controls traditional publishing, etc.,) but he scrappy rebel that he is will retreat to his farm, secure in his one up straight hard working manliness.

        Liked by 1 person

  12. Dan Savage wrote a column explaining why he concluded the gerbil sex thing is a myth. It’s, ah, rather graphic, so bear than in mind before sharing it. Or reading it.

    As a separate test, I did a couple of Google searches for variations on “gerbil sex equipment.” It stands to reason that if anyone were actually doing this, someone would be selling the equipment. But nothing of the kind seems to exist (short of plastic ones).

    Snopes makes a similar observation, adding that doctors frequeently write up things they’ve found inside patients, but none has ever written about finding a gerbil.

    And as for stories that “it used to be common in California,” it’s actually been illegal to buy gerbils in California for decades (at least) owing to fears that, as desert animals, they could become an invasive species.

    Liked by 3 people

    1. It started in the 1970’s historically as a joke slur and then I think the Gere thing was around the last time anyone was using it, so that’s mid 1980’s. That’s a golden oldie, there.

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  13. What a sad man. I can’t tell if Dave saying “and anonymous like Fieldsy” is an admission of error. He’s still using “Fieldsy”, so it’s confusing.

    It’s also interesting that everyone seems to have moved on except Dave, Chris Chupik and Phantom. They never seem to move on…

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    1. I did expect that the rest would start to slink off, declaring it no longer worth their time, but that Freer would stick it out longer because he wanted something bad to happen to Foz Meadows for being a queer author. But he’s now in the I am being plagued by the evil SJW destroyers and will retreat to my farm where I work very, very hard as a tough burly totally straight man stage, so there’s that.

      Liked by 4 people

      1. I have to roll my eyes whenever he does all that rugged farming man chat. I grew up on a hill farm and think he’s an incoherent and unpleasant man, despite him being such a trooper and occasionally getting his hands dirty.

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      2. He also seems to think that being a farmer and hunter and knowing how to slaughter a pig makes him special. No, dude, it doesn’t. I know plenty of folks who are farmers and/or hunter and even a few who know how to butcher a pig and all of them are better people than Freer.

        Liked by 3 people

    2. Well Chris and Phantom are mainly about trying to ingratiate themselves with Dave et al (hence the reporting back thing they do). Dave can’t admit he was wrong now without conceding he lied to his friends.

      Liked by 1 person

      1. Oh he can come up with ways around it without conceding lying. He has repeatedly claimed he wasn’t the source of the claim and didn’t set Antonelli off, so he can also claim a variation of Antonelli’s geographically mistaken excuse — given incorrect or misleading info rather than actually lying. And he can maintain that it was speculation, not confirmation, on the basis of various bits of data that seemed logically correct but aren’t 100 percent certain. But he may just go with the he knows what he knows defense which implies that what he claimed was true but is being so covered up and persecuted that it doesn’t matter trying to prove it with actual evidence. The rest of the crew will leave it alone because the lying was in a good cause, though they may be more careful to plan an attack based on a Freer claim in the future, since this one didn’t go so well.

        Liked by 3 people

      2. KatG: They’re liable to go on attack based on Freer’s claims again as long as it’s in line with their agenda.

        They might be less likely to do it just on his say-so, however.

        Also, Lou’s gotta stop being Freer’s useful idiot for his own sake. Must be embarrassing for him to apologize for what someone else put him up to.

        Liked by 1 person

  14. I have to say, that is possibly the most incoherent rant I’ve read in years – though what it lacks by way of any kind of logical argument it makes up for in length.
    If I weren’t pretty much caught up on this crap, and I didn’t have a lot of help in parsing it all from this post and the comments, I would be totally at a loss as to wtf he is going on about.
    Part of the problem is that he’s trying to hit all the puppy talking points in passing – what did Ann Leckie ever do to him?
    Anyway, he’s officially passed Yer Raving Uncle at Drunk At Holiday Dinner and hit Baying At The Moon levels of nonsense here.
    Baffling.

    Liked by 2 people

  15. 20-30 years ago, there were strange papers postered all over Stockholm. A total gibberish of words, sentences starting on one subject, ending on another, winding over the paper in maze-like scrawls. They were a fascination for us, everytime we would see one. We tried to decipher then, but could never understand more than that the person writing them was upset about the social security system, but we could never understand why. Sometimes small drawings (well done!) adorned the papers.

    I know understand that it must have been Freers soul-twin who put them up. It is the same incoherent scrambling style where nothing needs to make sense.

    Liked by 3 people

    1. See also those conspiracy theory books you find on remainder where Atlantis is really Portugal but the Illuminati covered it up, and the back cover blurb is a densely written tract in tiny font trying to convince you straight away, as if they’re afraid you won’t buy the book* and so this is their only chance to open your eyes to the truth.
      (*And to be fair to them, they’re right that I won’t be buying it)

      Liked by 2 people

    2. Anyone who’s spent any time in downtown San Francisco has seen this guy: https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Frank_Chu

      Yes, he has his own Wiki entry.
      Which I got to by Googling “san francisco man weird signs”.

      He’s much more benign, though; doesn’t go around shouting or cursing and inciting mobs and hating. Even has sponsors. Your basic harmless eccentric. He would NOT approve of Dave’s antics. Probably part of the 12 Galaxies evil. 🙂

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  16. I think it’s terribly sad that Freer doesn’t seem to have even one family member or friend who cares enough about him to help him get the extensive psychological counseling that he so clearly desperately needs. I can’t imagine that in his better days he would have wanted to end up like this — a pathetic laughingstock, intensely delusional, utterly inarticulate, and hopelessly divorced from reality. 😐

    Liked by 2 people

    1. My guess is that it’s crept up slowly and people have gotten habituated and/or are scared of him. These are very intense screeds.

      Liked by 1 person

      1. I’m glad I’m missing most of them. I gather they are going after Ann Leckie again or something? In order to keep justifying what they are doing, they turn their targets into boogey monsters and invoke their names in any argument.

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      2. Kat, it’s all very medieval demonology, isn’t it? Apocalyptic rants, blaming bad crops sales on shadowy (mostly female) demons that they could control if only they could know their true names and locations, repeating the names as incantations, demanding that everyone denounce the monsters and confess their sins.

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      3. Kat-Not a full out attack, but just a re-iteration of Leckie as icky stuff that people have to pretend to read because they are weak-minded wannabe types.
        Part of the incoherence was from tacking as many Pup-cliches as possible into the rant.

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      4. Right, because written fiction readers pretend to read stuff all the time and only get into lefty clubs by declaring they’ve read a novel, whereupon everybody is then very impressed. The fantasy world in which Puppies live is so weird. In our real world, written fiction readers are like cats. Their most common attribute, whatever their politics, is disdain for what is trendy.

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      5. Not a full out attack, but just a re-iteration of Leckie as icky stuff that people have to pretend to read because they are weak-minded wannabe types.

        That seems to line up with the apparent reality that the Pups don’t really do much reading. I remember back during the height of the Puppy kerfuffle, several people tried to engage Pups who popped up on comment sections of articles by asking them what they liked about the stories they nominated, and almost none of them gave anything beyond vague, monosyllabic responses. The Pups don’t believe other people are reading and enjoying books because they are projecting their own lack of interest in books onto others.

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      6. @Kat G:

        But even the non-GG Puppies don’t read much. Brad was extolling the muscled manly martial virtues of Heinlein and he hadn’t even read “Starship Troopers”, which even mundanes read! Especially military mundanes. Starship Freakin’ Troopers!

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      7. I actually haven’t read Starship Troopers either, though I saw the movie long ago. But I have read a number of the major Heinleins and a few of the lesser works, and he’s mostly not very martial. Joe Haldeman has more of a martial track record. Of course, he was a writing prof at M.I.T. and so probably is considered evil, I guess.

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      8. @Kat Goodwin:

        Well, yes, Even what with Heinlein being ex-military himself, I always got the impression from the works that I read (including several of his non-fiction essays) that his real fascination was less with the military itself and more with social structures and how they work or don’t work. Heck, you can make a good case that Starship Troopers is really ‘about’ the social implications, with the war going on being mostly a backdrop setting for that argument to take place against.

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      9. But even the non-GG Puppies don’t read much. Brad was extolling the muscled manly martial virtues of Heinlein and he hadn’t even read “Starship Troopers”, which even mundanes read!

        BT was a bad choice to lead the Puppy campaign, in large part because he is apparently rather poorly read in genre fiction. or more accurately, his reading has been drawn from a fairly narrow range. He also lacked any real knowledge concerning the history of science fiction fandom in general and the Hugo Award specifically, and seems to have had an educational background that focused heavily on getting professional credentials rather than getting immersed in literature and history. This combination of factors left him ill-equipped to form cogent arguments in support of the Puppy position, and resulted in his making numerous huge errors (such as his assertion that the Hugo fans were turning their noses up at the fans who were watching The Avengers in the movie theaters, apparently unaware that the movie had won a Hugo, or when he tried to defend his compatriots by comparing them to Confederate generals).

        That said, there weren’t really any other Puppies who were well-equipped to lead the group either, for a variety of reasons.

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      10. @KatG: Remember, Heinlein got a medical discharge after a few years as a junior officer pottering about on ships in peacetime. He never actually saw combat, so was free to glorify and romanticize it. But didn’t know about it personally so he didn’t have much of a base to write milSF from. Thus the sociological speculations.

        Haldeman slogged through the mud in Vietnam, being wounded — therefore he was agin’ it, particularly when the war was pointless (like Vietnam). And he’s got a BS and an MFA, plus is a professor. And writes amazing poetry. If you’ve never read “Saul’s Death”, find it NAO and prepare to cry at the bestest SF sestina evar. That all makes him evil I guess?

        @Aaron: Yeah… not knowing the genre he was talking about, the people he was dealing with, thinking Hugo voters hated “Avengers” instead of giving it the award (he couldn’t Google?), and comparing his own side to traitorous losers… Brad sure covered himself in anti-glory. Meanwhile, he lost all the impact to Teddy’s complete takeover of the concept with better discipline.

        And, again, there’s no valid reason for someone who’s set themselves up to defend Manly MilSF/right wing ideals and the Good Old Days to never have read “Starship Troopers”, the ur-example of that. It’s a short book, easy reading.

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  17. Your response is, I think, probably the best possible one.

    As I read Freer’s piece, the one thought that kept popping into my head was “well yes, but, if you weren’t such an ass, no one would have anything to complain about.”

    (I’d also strongly recommend that no one use that post as the basis for creating a marketing plan.)

    Liked by 2 people

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