Dear Miss Snark,
As your blog is a great source of information giventruthfully, I'm hoping you can help me make sense of this incident.
At a recent writer's conference, I pitched a book to a very well known agent. Although the agent wasn't interested in it, she did request a partial of another book I'd written that had finaled in a large contest.
Later on, a friend of mine overheard this agent publicly ridiculing the first book I'd pitched her to a another group of writers (my friend knew this book was mine as she'd helped me brainstorm it and it's a fairly unique twist on an old story).
What on earth makes this agent think this behavior is acceptable? How would you react to this? My ire is up to say the least.
Well, my ire is up too. But not at the agent first. Why is your friend passing this along? This is akin to "I saw Killer Yapp licking George Clooney's face but you weren't there Miss Snark". Some things you just don't ever need to know.
But to your question: what the hell is wrong with someone who'll ridicule people behind their backs? The answer of course is that we live in the postlapsarian world, and we are all bitterly human.
Yes, of COURSE you have hurt feelings. Yes of COURSE it's grossly inappropriate to ridicule someone behind their back.
However, given that this blog is named Miss SNARK and I have a nitwit of the day, week and year, and I tell people they are scum sucking pigs for charging fees, AND I run a critique that's called CRAPometer, the only difference is that I do ridicule people openly and to their face. Here in New York, we sometimes call this "master class". We even write plays about it and have them produced on Broadway. Sometimes they're called Master Class, and sometimes they're called A Chorus Line, and a lot of times they're called "reviewed by Michiko Kakutani".
I'm sorry dear reader but in this case, after I bop your "friend" on the noggin, I have to say "suck it up" to you. Of course, I wouldn't send that agent the partial either, cause her sense of decorum is a bit skewed, but other than that, if this is the most humiliating thing that ever happens count yourself lucky.