I had a dreadful day at school today with some of my fifth-graders acting up so badly that I had to get the headmaster involved. The class was always okay before, but we got new students and two of them act up badly. One at least has a reason, namely the worst last name known to mankind, which probably gets the kid teased to no end. The second seems to be just a spoiled brat.
Anyway, because the noisy and annoying students gave me one hell of a headache, here are some links, largely romance related, because the media always trots out the love, relationship and romance subjects around Valentine’s Day:
At the Guardian, there is a mini-war about chick lit going on, kicked off by Decca Aitkenhead’s condescending profile of/interview with Sophie Kinsella. The point of the whole interview is basically, “You went to Oxford and are a smart woman, so why do you write this trash?”
Jenny Geras, editor at Pan MacMillan, responds here and says that the main problem with chick lit is the unfortunate name and the fact that it is primarily written by and for women and thus falls victim of what Joanna Russ called “the double standard of content”, i.e. men’s concerns are important, women’s concerns are trivial.
The King of Elfland’s Second Cousin has a good post about romance subplots in speculative fiction. The examples he gives are not the ones I would have chosen, but his points are nonetheless interesting.
Business Week has an interesting article about the cover photographers for Harlequin’s category romances.
Jim C. Hines discusses the link and whether there is one between the Church of Scientology and Writers of the Future. I never submitted to Writers of the Future precisely because of the link with the Scientology. For in Germany any sort of connection to Scientology can have disastrous career consequences, particularly if you work in education. And that’s a risk I’d rather not run.