Tuesday, February 14, 2006

Bigge v. McLaren.

What we've learned since our last post:

A - McLaren once bashed Bigge and his book, A Very Lonely Planet: Love, Sex, and the Single Guy, in a column about "lurpers," a word she invented to describe certain young men that caught on like the frug revival;

B - During an online Q&A today, McLaren was all, "Hi Greg, I know the review you're talking about and I didn't read it. I try not to look at that stuff. I have enough negative voices in my head without adding someone else's. At the same time I'm not complaining. When you do a public job there are lots of perks, but there is also a downside, which is public criticism. I just see it as part of the job." {via Bookninja}

C - During said online Q&A, a guy called William McEnery from Pender Island, B.C. Canada, actually asked the following question: "Leah, it has been a pleasure following your career over the years - God, that makes you sound like a wizzened vetern doesn't it? You have made me laugh and think. Sometimes at the same time. Congrats on the publication of your novel. As your career is in its ascendancy do you envision a different role for yourself in the future, in regards to your writing? Perhaps writing on global/international issues, for example. Doing the Allan Abel switch. I ask only because I, along with countless others, would miss your weekly columns and the occasional features you write. Take care and good luck." What a TOTAL SUCK UP. Is Pender Island, like, an island that is threatened by global warming, so all the residents have to learn to suck real hard, because otherwise the rising water will overwhelm them?

D - On his blog, Bigge is all, "[I]f Oprah (or the Canadian equivalent therein) demands it, I will appear on her show and weep on cue" and he's all, "Oh, and I'm no longer single."

E - The Bigge-McLaren "feud" has launched a spin-off feud between Carolyn Weaver, producer and host of Fine Print, and Continuity Girl blurber (not to be confused with 'lurper') Ceri Marsh, editor of Fashion magazine. In the comments on Quill and Quire's blog, Weaver wrote:
It is impossible to say if McLaren's critical commentary on Bigge’s A Very Lonely Planet or Bigge's critical commentary on McLaren’s The Continuity Girl have merit without first reading both books. What I can comment on, having read many tremendously “smart and entertaining” novels by Canadian writers, is the comment by Ceri Marsh on the back of The Continuity Girl in which she writes: Leah McLaren's writing is an elbow to the ribs of the accepted CanLit notion that smart and entertaining don't belong together. I found the comment sad, offensive and in poor taste. Sad because she felt that the only way to be an advocate for the book was to diminish the work of others. Offensive because she carries the title of Editor-in-Chief of a Canadian publication and had no hesitation to publicly disregard the first rate, internationally recognized work of so very many great Canadian writers.... I do not know if McLaren approved the quote but I am sorry that Haper Collins went with it. I can’t think of many industries in which a patently untrue comment of this sort by someone of stature would go unaddressed.
Or, you know, whatever.

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