Tuesday, March 16, 2010

nicholas sparks...shut your trap, eh?

If you've been out from under your rock in the last six months, chances are you've heard of Nicholas Sparks. Y'know, the infamous author behind tearjerker Dear John and the upcoming Miley Cyrus vehicle, The Last Song. If you've been wandering about a bit longer, you might've heard of his other offsprings, The Notebook and Message in a Bottle. And, most likely, half of you haven't thought twice about his formulmatic mellow-dramas. Sure, good for quick entertainment on a rainy day. Not exactly Pulitzer Prize winners, but they have their own charm, right? Not to mention the fact that Rachel McAdams makes everything good.

Well, that's what I thought, at least. Until I read this Cyrus/Sparks interview on USAToday.

Well, where to begin? How about at the sheer audactiy of this man not only labelling his own novels, but raising himself above fellow authors who most would say write the exact same things he does, except, you know, better?

When asked what genre he does belong in, he dubs them "love stories", saying his words do not cross the "fine line" of melodrama, that he doesn't "emotionally manipulate" his readers, that he is literally tha best Writer of Teh Love Story on this green earth. He also insults McCarthy and compares his work to Hemingway and, I quote, "A Farewell to Arms, by Hemingway. Good stuff. That's what I write. Good stuff."

Who the fuck do you think you are, mister?

I'll tell you who you are, Nicholas Sparks. Your an overrated, pompous, mediocre chick-lit writer who is about as respected in the literary field as Twilight--nay, even Twilight has some artistic integrity. At least Twilight isn't commisioned by Disney as the latest Teen Pop Sensations Serious Acting Debut. At least Twilight doesn't go around discussing his characters in the same sentense as Romeo and fucking Juliet. At least Twilight doesn't pretend to be more then it is--a mellodramatic teenage vampire saga with a flat heroine and a broody 115-year old boy. At least Twilight doesn't hold itself above the great Blood Meridian. At least Twilight doesn't assosiate itself so closely with Greek-fucking-tragedies, you self-important prick. Your so called "literature" is, at best, inoffensive teen beach trash and, at worst, repetitive, emotionall-manipulative and poorly written romances. Yes, Sparks, you do not write "love stories". You write romances, same as every other author in your genre--YES, you do have a genre (except less sexy). There are other people who do what you do. And they do it with at least a shred of dignity to their name. They are not proposioned by suits like some sort of cheap whore. They write what they want, and they do not take it to Disney before they even pick up their pen. You, sir, are not an artist, you are not at parr with Hemingway, or Shakespeare, or Jane Austen, or any of those Greek tragedians you cite so gloriously. You are a middle-aged man who writes novels about people falling in love and then dying, a cheap emotional ploy that, yes, is very mellodramatic.

And you, Cyrus, piping in with your little quip about Catcher in the Rye like you own two brain cells. Like your so frikken smart cause you read a book? As the author who wrote this article proclaimed, it is practically law for every seventeen year old to lurv the Catcher in the Rye.

I didn't like either of these guys before, but they have officially lost whatever respect I had for them. Both are mediocre, overblown sensations who have absolutly zero archival quality. And, I'm sorry, but anyone who cites their own novel as their "favorite tale of youth" is just a douche. At least have some fake humility, for Gods sake!

Alright, that's it. Tell me what you think.

20 comments:

Just Your Typical Book Blog said...

First - this post made me laugh my face off!

I skimmed through the article. I was a bit taken back by him voting in his own novel. I mean I know he's proud, but really now.

Anonymous said...

I had to stop at the part where he called "Blood Meridian" 'pulpy' and 'melodramatic'. I can understand not stomaching it but...'pulpy cowboys vs. Indians'? What?

Also, you might be a douche when...you disagree with almost everything two people say about your stories. Wooooow.

Alexa said...

he is a douche. I haven't read any of his books yet, but even if they are amazing, he should NEVER put down other authors like that and honestly, you learn in like kindergarten to be humble. This will definitely turn me off from his books.

Also, omg, how did Cyrus write a book?!? anyone? And she didn't even finish the damn book?! wow.

fantasylover12001 said...

Yeah, I read that artical too and thought he sounded amazingly arrogant. Never mind that pretty much all his books look alike, just rehashing of the plot and circumstances of the characters. You can gaurantee his books will have all/one the following:
Father/daughter and or son close relationship (or will be eventually)
Epic meeting of two lovers
Some personal tragedy and/or circumstance that will tear lovers apart awhile/or stand in the way
Happy ending
Basically, it's CHICK LIT. Not "love stories", which by the way is the same damn thing as romances so get off your high horse Sparks. You're not that great. I hate authors who try and say their mediocre chick lit is actually a literary masterpiece, all of us are just too dumb to see it.

Michelle @ The True Book Addict said...

I refuse to read his books because every single movie has a sad ending. And I usually read the book, even if I see the movie first. Not in the case of his books. I was so PISSED at the end of Nights in Rodanthe that I swore I would never see one of his movies again nor read his books...ever! How can every single story have a sad ending?! It just sucks! And I've heard that he's not the greatest writer. For him to brag about himself in that way is ridiculous. He really needs to take a good look in the mirror and reassess his self-importance.

April (BooksandWine) said...

I can't stand Nicholas Sparks, ever since I read in this livejournal group about how someone went to his signing and he was so rude to her because she mentioned a friend had taken one of his books out of the library and loved it. That just really, really turned me off, and that was years ago when I read that.

Honestly, I enjoy the movies based on his books and I feel completely fine saying that in this case, the movie is better than the book, especially the Notebook, I love the movie, but I thought the book was dull and didn't see the big deal.

I don't think he'll ever have the relevance of Hemmingway, nor the talent.

Also, I feel like Salinger would be rolling in his grave over Cyrus's reference to Catcher In The Rye.

Meg (choco) @ In Which a Girl Reads said...

I love you. Hilariously awesome post, and thanks for pointing me to the article.

Sparks is arrogant and cocky and just because he's making money doesn't mean his books aren't crappy. AND TO COMPARE HIMSELF TO CORMAC MCCARTHY AND HEMMINGWAY? WTH. He writes short-lived romance and they write literature that people are going to be reading 300 years from now.

I don't like Cyrus (she knows how to read? She read Catcher in the Rye? That's news to me--but I laughed when she said she couldn't finish the Last Song). This article made me dislike Sparks. What a winning pair. [/sarcasm]

mummazappa said...

oh this post is gold! i read the article and just love the way the reporter told us all what a pair of dorks they are in such a professional manner :-) i can just hear the reporter replying to sparks' and cyrus' publicists all innocent like: 'what? i just wrote what they said.'

in fairness to sparks i think maybe he was trying to say he doesn't write 'romance' as in 'porn for elderly ladies' but seriously he must know he writes pulp? which i don't have a problem with i love pulp, but seriously, anyone who think cormac mcarthey is a terrible writer that they are better than is a clearly having delusions of grandueur.

Bookalicious Ramblings said...

Excellent post! I can't stand this idiot either and this interview makes me dislike him even more. I read The Notebook to see what all the fuss was about and gaaaah, what a poorly written boring book, I struggled to finish it! I will most definitely never read anything by this stuck-up dude again. He's seriously delusional if he thinks his little stories aren't romances or melodramatic, LOL.

"Asked what he likes in his own genre, Sparks replies: "There are no authors in my genre. No one is doing what I do."" - Seriously, I don't even ...

Bookalicious Ramblings said...

""Of course!" Sparks says. "I write in a genre that was not defined by me. The examples were not set out by me. They were set out 2,000 years ago by Aeschylus, Sophocles and Euripides. They were called the Greek tragedies. A thriller is supposed to thrill. A horror novel is supposed to scare you. A mystery is supposed to keep you turning the pages, guessing 'whodunit?'

"A romance novel is supposed to make you escape into a fantasy of romance. What is the purpose of what I do? These are love stories. They went from (Greek tragedies), to Shakespeare's Romeo and Juliet, then Jane Austen did it, put a new human twist on it. Hemingway did it with A Farewell to Arms.""

IS THIS DOUCHE FOR REALZ? What on Eeeeath is he smoking?!

Brahmin in Boston said...

Never read NS and will NEVER EVER read it. Period.

Really... I hate all the sad ending and something about his books and his movies tick me off royally (BTW all this from a girl who has never read/seen the movies and books)

He feels like a wuss... urgh

Brahmin in Boston said...

Oh BTW Miley is a horror movie genre all by herself.

Jodie said...

Well this was awful, we must do it again sometime :) I love how he's like 'every romance novel - tots the same, in this exact way that I have defined' but he doesn't go generic enough to make every romance novel fit his terms (the right way would have been something like 'person meets person, love occurs somehow, everybody wins') so he makes it ridiculously easy to disprove what he's saying.

Mollie said...

I thought I was the only one that disliked his books. Everyone else seems to love them. Does anyone know if even ONE of his books doesn't end with SOMEONE (usually the main character) dying?

Donna said...

I stopped reading the article when he claimed Cormac McCarthy's work as "horrible." Sorry, dude. You're not Stephen King. You haven't earned the right to judge anyone else's work because you're not immovable.

By Sparks's own definition, he can't write melodrama because it actually takes a modicum of talent to be able to manipulate a reader's emotions. When every single story you write is so formulaic you can find it in a Kraft cookbook, you're not really in a position to judge, not hold yourself up against Euripides or Hemingway. While Hemingway isn't my cup of tea, Sparks has one hell of a nut sack to put himself in the same boat.

To be fair, though, while many level-headed readers don't elevate the likes of Twilight to more than what it is, SMeyer does have a rather higher-than-necessary opinion of her writing that really isn't befitting such a novice (or any writer, really).

But for the love of god, he's a writer. He has to understand the power his words have and what he's saying. I hope he was able to get out of the book store with that head of his and they didn't need to take out a wall.

Greg Zimmerman said...

What a choad. Thanks for pointing this out.

Lindsay-with-an-A said...

I cannot BELIEVE that he says "A Walk to Remember" is his favorite book. I'm really hoping he intended the entire interview to come across as a joke.

Really really hoping.

Nishant said...

I skimmed through the article
home based data entry

Anonymous said...

Just so you know, Stephanie Meier did compare Twilight to the work of Jane Austen in the Bronte sisters. I agree, though. Sparks is now so much worse...

Nancy said...

I would like to know how to contact Nicholas Sparks, or his agent to find IF he would be willing to read a couple of stories, and possibly make one of his spell binding novels from each.

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