I know this week’s Book Bites may seem as if I’m cheating but I just want to add my two cents worth to the issue at hand.
For those who have read Sarah Coldheart’s entry on the literary scene here. To accompany that, I believe that AMWC had a similar article, together with another post which I wrote in Book Bites as well.
So yes, rant, rant and more rant.
But for what?
We have jobs or plan to have jobs to pay the bills. We can always survive on our own with “proper” jobs and stuff and still write out of interest. So why rant? Or rather, why state the reality of things?
I can say this, the literary scene here is absolutely vibrant. Not just your run-of-the-mill “I’m an Asian girl trying to break out of the cycle” kind of story that centers around purely Asian Culture or how miserable the protagonist is until he/ she breaks out of this and that, but also genre fiction that triggers the imagination.
I just don’t understand the snobbery against genre fiction.
There, I said it. As a person who reads both genre, “trashy” fiction and classic, “literary” fiction, I said it.
Yes, Dickens talks about the hardship he went through as a child, teaching values of perseverance, courage and what not, later becoming a Classic. However, the Women’s Murder Club series classifies as Crime/ Mystery Fiction, a type of genre fiction, does it not talk about the need for constant vigilance in a time of crime? Does it not tell you the consequences of crime? That crime does not go unpunished?
Even culture related novels, where people go, “Oh this is great because it not only tells a story but also explains about the life in Asia in depth and all that jazz!” Don’t Steve Berry’s novels, that run along the story line of adventure and mystery solving, describe the vibrant culture of the different countries his novels are based around?
So even if you go all the way back where you want to argue about Shakespeare versus the writings of today’s day and age. Twelfth Night (my favourite play by Shakespeare, if you’d please) has beautiful lines of poetry and song that will never be contested with, language wise. But story wise?
Ultimately, it’s a personal preference of genre selection.
And ultimately, it’s about this: If genre fiction is practically whatever’s written in fiction, and if Literature is considered to be what’s written down…
Then what does it make of this statement?
ALL WRITING IS LITERATURE.
That’s me. Thank you for reading.