First things first: Happy Birthday Bianca! I hope you have a great day. And a great year.
And now, a clarification: I don’t think Crocs are ugly. I actually kind of like them. I was just amazed at how quickly they seem to have permeated the culture without me noticing. And clearly, it is not just a NC thing. I mean, 49 comments? Like them or hate them, people feel strongly. And of course now I have friends who are DEMANDING I get a pair before I sound off about them anymore, as they believe I will be converted immediately. We shall see.
Thirdly (is that a word?) last night we watched the final episodes of season two of Veronica Mars, on DVD. I’m not going to give away anything about it, in case others, like me, are watching late, but let me just say that the mystery of this season was so much more complicated than the first one. I mean, I watched every episode, and I’m STILL a little fuzzy on how it all hangs together. (Thank goodness for Mars Investigations, which has clarified things for me many times. Indispensable!) So many tangents and twists, dead ends: twelve hours later, I’m still processing it. Which, to me, is a high compliment. I’m the first to admit I watch a lot of mindless TV, which only makes me appreciate a show like VM, and its incredible writing, that much more. Who knows what they’ll come up with for season three? It’s a new network, anything is possible. I can’t wait.
And finally, speaking of writing, a question. How does one respond to censorship? I recently received an email from a media specialist at a middle school, informing me that Someone Like You was being challenged by a parent who wanted it removed from the library, and asking for my response. Of course, my initial reaction is to say that I disagree. And to point out that this same book has been on tons of reading lists and won library prizes from several school systems. I’m the first to admit that not everyone has the same taste in books, and that there may be some things in Someone Like You (and in all of my books, for that matter) that certain people might find offensive or disagree with. To me, though, just because YOU don’t agree with something doesn’t mean you should have the power to remove it from a library. This is not the first time I’ve run up against something like this—a couple of years back, This Lullaby was removed from an the catalog of an in-school book selling club, because someone complained.
The bottom line is, I’m going to write the books I want to write: the idea of checking myself because I’m worried about offending someone, or pleasing everyone, goes against everything I believe in (and pretty much squashes the creative process, as well). Still, it bothers me to think that things like this go on. That maybe there is someone out there who might be affected by this book—like the hundreds of readers I’ve heard from since it came out eight years ago—who might not have access to it because of this. It’s frustrating. I know a lot of librarians check on this site, as well as teachers and parents. I guess I’m just wondering what is the standard procedure for something like this: how does a book challenge work?And how often are books actually withdrawn? I’m curious.
So there you have it. Birthdays, Crocs, Veronica Mars and censorship. Clearly, I’m not writing THIS page with any kind of agenda. It’s just another Thursday, right?