COMMUNITIES SUCK ACCORDING TO POPPY Z. BRITE
According to Poppy Z. Brite, the horror community sucks. And she names me as part of the problem in her latest blog entry (August 6th). She says I took potshots at her out of envy at her publishing deals. She then goes on to imply that I think she and Kathe Koja are castrating bitches.
There's only one problem here. I think Kathe Koja is a great stylist and a wonderful writer, and I actually published one of her first, early stories in my magazine Jabberwocky back in the late 1980s. I also tried to solicit work from Brite and Koja for the Thackery T. Lambshead Pocket Guide to Eccentric & Discredited Diseases. I also tried to solicit work from Koja for Leviathan.
(It's probably irrelevant or anecdotal at best to note that my wife Ann deleted a negative reference to her in a book column in Ann's magazine The Silver Web because she thought it was unfair to Poppy. I totally agreed with that decision.)
For the record, let me state that I have read exactly three pieces by Poppy Z. Brite. One of them was her first novel, which I thought was mediocre. The second of them was a story about India that I didn't think was accurate in its descriptions. The third was an excellent absinthe-drenched pseudo-Decadence story (which is what prompted me to solicit work from her for the fake disease guide). End of story. I can't remember reviewing either the novel or the India story. And I can't remember commenting on them in public. If I did comment somewhere, it would have had to have been literally over a decade ago. And it certainly wouldn't have been out of spite.
I am still planning on picking up Brite's latest novel, which looks very interesting. The farther she's gone from the horror field, ironically enough, the more interesting her work has seemed to me.
In short, I think Poppy's thinking of someone else or has been fed some wrong info or is blowing up some slight I can't even remember and then magnifying it to the point of potential libel.
Yes, welcome to the horror community--it really does suck. And if you want to learn to what extend, you'll just have to read my nonfiction collection Why Should I Cut Your Throat? There's an essay on horror in there--that doesn't even mention Poppy Z. Brite--that'll curl your toenails.