Tuesday, April 4

Obsessing about obsessing

**Edited** please note, I'm over my hormone induced snit that caused the post.

I've been on the computer a lot over the last few days. Lurking on different message boards, visiting blogs, blogging etc. and I'm starting to wonder about the whole lot of us.

Are we all crazy or just enthusiastic??

On one message board I'm seeing the in depth character motivation of some of my favorite books, and I'm left scratching my head. People were contemplating all sorts of things that never occurred to me, and is it me, did I somehow miss how important all this was, or did I simply enjoy the books for the escapism. And yet, I can be just as guilty of this, why can't we read for the simple pleasure of reading and escaping to a time gone by or a future different from ours.

Is escape good?

On another board we have constant sucking up by rabid fangirls to mediocre authors, who frighten the the heck out of me. The fangirls that is, and maybe the authors too, who seem to feed off of this behavoir. Just because an author talks to you on a message board it doesn't make them your best friend. It's like my hairdresser who now refers to George Clooney as George, and tells you how down to earth he is after meeting him once. Okay, maybe not that extreme, but you get what I mean. What makes them even more frightening is that they laugh at other fangirls.

Rabid fangirls=obsessive.

I've come to the conclusion that I'm done with book covers, we have sites dedicated to picking on them, and others that obsess about cover models, yuck--there's something really creepy about this. Some complain about the decapitated art covers, others complain that they don't want to see the head it messes with their imagination of the characters. I'm reaching a point that all I want is the name on a plain white cover and forget the art. Though I do agree with Kristie, a publishing house as big as Avon can and should do a better job, but then a white cover with just the title and author would be an improvement over most what Avon turns out.

Note to self--no more comments about covers.

On another site authors are complaining about other authors turning every opportunity into an attempt to self promote, and yet this is done on that very same site on a daily basis.

Maybe authors are crazy too?

We've got vampires and regency misses coming out our ears. And we're all complaining about overkill, but we're still reading them. We're complaining that new vampire series are rip-offs of old and old ones are rip-offs of themselves. Regency period books all seem to blend and yet we're still buying them. And what is one of my favorite series Susan Squires' Regency Vampire books. I'm starting to scare myself.

I think we're all crazy, myself included.

My TBR pile mocks me on a daily basis, my tlf list is almost as big as my TBR pile, what the hell am I going to do with all these books once I've read them? Send them to Sybil I guess.

So, what are you reading, and are you obsessing about it??


Bev (BB) said...

Er, feel better now? (VBG)

Ah, what's tlf? 'Cause I'm searching through my admittedly sleepy and caffiene-deprived brain this morning and not coming up with a thing to go with it.

As to the obsessing, I don't believe it harms a thing including those who do it - who me? - as long as it's balanced with other things. Like real life. And believe me, I get plenty of "real" in my life nowadays so that's not going to be a problem. (G)

OTOH, if things get too intense or repetitive, now that can be a problem but maybe just for me. Kind of like what you're saying about the cover issue, Tara. After about the tenth or twentieth or maybe 100th time one sees the same discussion flare up, it's stops being interesting. Even if one feels passionately about the topic, at some point it's just difficult to work up the energy needed to continue feeding the flame when one knows it's not going to actually change anything.

God, what mixed up metaphors I wandered into there.

Okay, this is getting way too long but there is one other point I'd like to make before deciding to turn this into a blog post of my own. (G) I'm not in any way saying that there's anything wrong with feeling passionately about any of these topics. Just that when one gets right down to it, the only thing we truly have any control over as individual readers is how we feel about each book we read. Good, bad or otherwise, it's always fascinating to me to learn what nuances other readers took away from a book I've also read.

sybil said...

omg! I started to write this like last Friday...


I think it is a mixture of things and at the heart of it. The cover model stuff really bugs me. REALLY bugs me... not sure why but it is just squicky and makes me want to slap people.

OMFG he is HAWT! Like sooo lickable... lets talk about him and shit. But then I think I am over thinking and at the heart of it romance novels should be fun.

So whatever draws you in, fine. If you wanna sqqquuueee about it, fine. If you find like mind people to sqqqquuueee with you, cool.

Don't know. I know what started my head hurting was trying to figure out what makes a perfect book. And hell if I know. I can pick up a book, not have it work for me but enjoy it on a level that I think would work for you, or kristie or jay or nicole. It is so odd at times.

I have decided we just over think some things. I like what I like, hate what I hate and enjoy some camp for camp. I mean really, how else can I own like 40 Palmer books *g*. But od'ing on message boards will almost always leave you scared.

And yes, send to sybil, heeee

Tara Marie said...

Bev--I did feel better after writing all that--LOL.

To Look For list (tlf).

Since I'm one of those people who can nit pick a book to death, I figure I'm the first to claim guilt.

After about the tenth or twentieth or maybe 100th time one sees the same discussion flare up, it's stops being interesting.

That's it in a nutshell--thanks for stating it better. *G*

Sybil, I find the cover model thing kind of creepy, but to each his own, but I have to avoid the ssqqqquuueeeiiiinnnggg.

I have decided we just over think some things. EXACTLY

Kim said...

Well, I'm blessed with the world's worst memory.
Ever see the movie 50 First Dates?
That's me or at least darn close.
So that solves the obsessing issue.
Very difficult to obsess when I forget what I'm obsessing about!

I think that's why I can read regency after regency.
They might all be very much the same but since I can't remember the last one I read, I still enjoy them.

Which leads to why I rely on review sites like this one.
You pick the best of the bunch and then I go out and read them.
Don't ever question whether you're providing a valued service.
You are.

Anonymous said...

I am soooo with you on the rabid fangirl/mediocre author bit. If you know your favorite author's birthday, and actually send her a card, you are toooo involved! All the "OMG, you're so great" gets really old. I've had to bite my tongue so many times.

Cover models....ewwww. I saw a picture a while back of cover model contestants and all I can say is there must be a loooot of airbrushing and touchups on those covers.

I'm even with you on the overanalyzing. Sometimes I just want to enjoy a good book. I don't have to write a college thesis about it!

Thank you for allowing me to ride the coattails of your rant!


sybil said...

Well I can't say shit about sqqqqeeeiiiinnnnggg :)

And I do try to remember that different do it for different people and live and let live. And that works... some times.

Other times, not so well.


Tara Marie said...


sqqqqeeeiiiinnnnggg is fine, I just need to avoid the people who do it over cover models.

Anne E. said...

I have been involved in a book discussion on the Barnes and Noble website for the past few weeks that has prevented me from doing much else in my limited computer time. I have to say that raging debates about books are not limited to romance blogs -- you should read some of the comments about Thomas Hardy's "The Return of the Native" over at Barnes and Noble University! At one point the pissing contest (excuse me, I mean debate) among four of the discussion board regulars became so acrimonious that one of them bailed out early. The upside to all this is that if you have a particular and sudden need for a pedantic bore, I know where several hang out!

Cover art is an issue that never dies, isn't it? I personally love the "decapitation" covers, especially if they include a stepback that shows the couple. IMO good examples of this type are the covers of Liz Carlyle's series "One Little Sin," "Two Little Lies," and "Three Little Secrets." Alan Ayers is the artist. A good example of artistic beefcake (instead of the cheesy Ellora's Cave covers) is on the Helen Kirkman Harlequin Historical "A Moment's Madness" and the other books in that series. No credit is given in the book as to the name of the artist. And I agree about the Avon covers -- apparently that publisher has a house artist that knows of only one pose for romance novel covers (she is always on her back, he is always looming over her -- yawn).

Wendy said...

I just avoid message boards altogether these days. I suffer from fewer headaches that way.

I never get tired of talking about covers (good ones, bad ones) - but have never, ever understood the cover model thing. All those guys look oily and greasy to me.

Vampires - I don't seek them out, and only read them when I get a review book. Not burnt out yet.

Regencies - Refuse to buy them, even used! I'm just tired.

Fangirls - scary, scary, scary! I do have fangirl tendencies with certain authors, but I don't send them birthday cards, and I don't stalk them online and blow sunshine up their butts. I will gush on my blog though. I figure that's "my home" and I can say whatever the heck I want....

Tara Marie said...

Anne, If I have problems with those who over-analyze romance, I certainly will have a problem with those looking at classic fiction--LOL. The cover thing, I'm giving up on, it's never going to change.

Wendy--I gave up on message boards a while ago too, but hubby was home sick and I was avoiding him like the plague, literally.

I don't get the cover model appeal thing, never did, and I guess never will.

I don't read very many vampire series--Squires, Ward, Viehl, that's it. I actually prefer ones that have a stronger horror feel to them.

Fangirls rank with cover model squealers, I guess their just a different breed. :D

Michelle Buonfiglio said...

If I were an author, I would thank God for every fangrl who coughed up her cash and came my way.

And as a woman who, like you wants people to visit [my columns and] my blog, I have a blast getting them talking about whatever they want to keep coming back to talk about.

I don't think you need to apologize to anybody for blogging what you feel.

And I don't know if you're referring to RBtheBlog's recent All Nathan All The Time obsession with getting his interview, but I won't apologize for welcoming to my sites and blog every one of the scores of persons who get there because they googled Nathan Kamp's name and found us bloggers.

I'm really glad you came by because then I found your blog. Would I be blowing sunshine up your ass if I told you I think it's one of the better romance sites I've seen?

Thanks for the links. I really appreciate them.


Tara Marie said...

Michelle, thanks for coming back...

1. there are fangirls and then there is stalking, scary fangirls that rip you apart if you don't love everything that said author puts out, at least that's my opinion

2. I'm not apologizing, just a little explanation for snarkiness above and beyond the norm.

3. To be honest, I've not your posts about Nathan Kamp, I truly avoid anything model related. I was thinking more on the line of organizations that support contests etc. and the people who follow them so closely.

4. A little sunshine never hurt anyone--LOL :p

have a good one, maybe tomorrow I'll come up with something else interesting.

Nicole said...

Oh God, I never understand how some women can think those cover models are hot. All that nasty long hair and weirdly shaped muscles *shudder* Just ick ick ick. Ick.

Yeah, raging fangirliness is annoying.

Ah...I love reading a good rant.

Tara Marie said...

Nicole, I hope this one lived up to "a good rant". I don't do it very often, I'm much more likely to do mini rants about bad books.

amy*skf said...

I'm late to the rant, but I wish someone would blow sunshine up my butt, because I'm getting awfully tired of doing it myself.


I just don't get upset about what someone writes in a blog or in a comment--and if I disagree, then I tell them-and-I tell them why.

Cover models--who cares, it's fun. at least the good ones are--I have seen the smarmy ones too-yuck.

And you may have been ranting Tara Marie--but you got people talking. It's a good thing.

p.s. I found your sight from Romancing the Blog.

Anonymous said...

I saw that you like Susan Squires vampire stuff. Have you read The Burning yet? Very original!

She did a video for it if you're interested-


I love the guy who plays the hero!