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Thread: Who Is The Worst Writer Ever?

  1. #1
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    Who Is The Worst Writer Ever?

    Who is the worst writer ever? And to make it interesting rather than have everyone say Dean Koontz, who is the worst writer ever who is considered to be literary?

    I'd nominate either Matthew Gregory Lewis, Theodore Dreiser, or Owen Wister.


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    Hmm, what a difficult question to answer! I try to find a respect for all authors, published or unpublished, but I have come across a few writers who . . . well, I can understand how other people like them, but they just seem to write literature I cannot really enjoy.
    I unintentionally offend people with questions like these since I have read VERY few science-fiction and fantasy books I enjoyed (Stranger in a Strange Land by Robert Heinlein, being the only I can think of presently), but I hope not to upset anyone.
    In works other than science-fiction and fantasy, however, I never cared a lot for Gore Vidal's writing. So much of his work seems too ambiguous and fashionably dark, if that makes sense.

  3. #3

    The Critics' Twilight Zone

    Well, Mono, I must say! You have pressed all of my buttons, and I am now quite angry!

    (just kidding)

    Funny that mention should be made of Dean Koontz. Recently, I struck up a conversation with someone who was reading "Seize the Night" because I was curious about their reading preferences, and they GAVE me the book, saying they were finished with it.

    I have never really read any popular current authors, so I was most curious to see what such a book might be like.

    It looks like fun, at first glance.

    My big "hang-up" is that I want everything that I read and write to explode with profound insight. I realize that such expectations are unrealistic. I have tried to rehabilitate myself through a number of clever tactics. One, of course, is to read all of Mono's posts (just kidding again, can you tell how angry I am, still!?)....

    Seriously folks, being at this forum has opened my eyes to a whole new world, another world of reading interests. And now, this thread makes me realize that I must begin to dislike the Dean Koontz book which I received for free through an act of divine providence. I am so impressionable!

    I actually visited Dean Koontz' website. I guess all famous authors have a website these days (even the dead ones). I know that I do (have a web site, that is).

    I was reading a lot about Hemingway a little while back. Someone commented that the very last book to be published (posthumously) under Hemingway's name, from notes just before his death, is the worst writing to ever bear his name. I imagine Ernest was feeling a bit under the weather at the time. We cannot be at our best all of the time. Even God rested on the seventh day.

    This suggests to me yet another forum thread, to debate the "Worst of the Best:" pick all the best writers and list their worst books. Note, the converse of that notion is unfeasible. We cannot pick all the worst writers and then list all their best books ("A Best of the Worst") for if they have at least one good book, why, then they were not so bad after all (ipso facto, q.e.d.)

    Now, it suddenly occurs to me that IF there were only one person in the history of the world to ever write, and if they wrote only one book (and then moved in with Harper Lee), why, by definition, they would be both the best and the worst writer the world has ever known. Libraries would be very small. Book-of-the-Month clubs would be unknown.

    But, if there were only TWO people in the history of the world to ever write a book, then one would have to be the best, and the other would win second prize as the worst.

    Let us suppose, now, for the sake of argument, that there are an infinite number of universes (we shall call them, collectively, the Multiverse), tucked one inside another (in black holes), and in each universe there are an infinite number of inhabited worlds, but, in each of those worlds, there has appeared one and only one author, who writes one and only one book, which is perceived by that world to be both the best and the worst ever written. BUT, ruling over this hefty Metaverse of ours, with an all-seeing eye of omniscience (the other eye is covered by a pirate's patch), is a Supersoul Divinity, whose essence is all those little souls in all those worlds which ever were or will be (just as you and I are all the cells of our body which ever were or will be.) Now, the souls of all those one-and-only-authors who wrote those best-worst books comprise the MIND of the SuperSoul Divinity. These authors are eternally ranked and reaaranged in the Judgment-Day mind of our friendly neighborhood Divinity, from best to worst (and sometimes, from worst to best), but since they are infinite in number, this task takes some time. In fact, come to think of it, it is ceaseless. And this ceaseless activity is a form of circulation or resperation for the SuperSoul.


    Ok... back from our trip to the critics' Twilight Zone.
    Last edited by Sitaram; 02-20-2005 at 05:38 PM.

  4. #4
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    Without a doubt it's Upton Sinclair.
    I've always thought that people obscenely overrate Kafka too.
    "When unto these sessions of sweet silent thought I summon up a remembrance of things past."

  5. #5
    Sinclair's mother confided to me once that she rather like some of it.

    Milan Kundera worships Kafka (or so it seems from "The Art of the Novel") and Nabokov liked Kafka too. We could compile a list of the worst writers beloved by excellent writers (or or authors who are simply "O.K.")
    Last edited by Sitaram; 02-20-2005 at 04:37 PM.

  6. #6
    Pice de Rsistance Scheherazade's Avatar
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    That would be me, me thinks.
    ~
    "It is not that I am mad; it is only that my head is different from yours.
    ~


  7. #7
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    all that writing sitaram and still no answer to whom you think is the worst writer ever...


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    I agree with Kafka. I don't know if i'd say he was the worst, but he's one of the few that I've read and extremely disliked.

  9. #9
    Pice de Rsistance Scheherazade's Avatar
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    I love Kafka.
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    "It is not that I am mad; it is only that my head is different from yours.
    ~


  10. #10
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    Quote Originally Posted by Sitaram
    Well, Mono, I must say! You have pressed all of my buttons, and I am now quite angry!
    I am SO sorry, Sitaram. Being so admittedly . . . finicky with my taste in literature, as I mentioned, I know many people disagree with my specific palate and often fickleness. Hence, I would, by no means, intend any offense towards anyone's preference in literature. I greatly admire, and try to own, a fair amount of reverence for art (especially literature), but my pride must show somewhere.

  11. #11
    precious... subterranean's Avatar
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    How do you all define the word "worst"?


    "there are people in the world so hungry that God can not appear to them except in the form of bread"

    Mahatma Gandhi

  12. #12
    String Dancer Shea's Avatar
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    I really think its just a matter of perspective, but then again I just got through reading David Hume's "Of the Standard of Taste" for my literary criticism class (interesting, but droll). Usually, I may like an author's writing method, but hate the message. I hated The Awakening by Kate Chopin because of my personal morals, but I did like her writing style.

    I'm not really sure that we as the public can know who the worst writer is, because if someone is that bad, they would never be published anyway, right?
    Hwt! We Gar-Dena in geardagum,/eodcuninga rum gefrunon,/hu a elingas ellen fremedon!
    Oft Scyld Scefing sceaena reatum,/ monegum mgum, meodosetla ofteah,/ egsode eorlas, syan rest wear/ feasceaft funden; he s frofre gebad,/ weox under wolcnum, weormyndum ah,/ ot him ghwylc ara ymbsittendra/ofer hronrade hyran scolde,/gomban gyldan. t ws god cyning!

  13. #13
    dancing before the storms baddad's Avatar
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    I'll have to think about my vote for a little while, but my standard of the 'worst book ever' will be a book I would not pass on to another. I was going to say 'worst' would be a book that I would have no qualms destroying, throwing away, or burning (ala Bradbury), but I could not bring myself to perform such an act on even simple drivel...


    ....Ok, I've decided. I read a 'Harlequin Romance' once (the absolutely, positively, only book on the entire train)...and it really, really, really sucked........a lot........immensely bad.......putrid, decayed, mushy, rot. I may have burned that one.....if I hadn't been on a train....and the writing Gods would have forgiven me I'm sure....
    Last edited by baddad; 02-21-2005 at 01:41 AM.

  14. #14
    I think I have to qoute myself from an earlier discussion on most boring book ever. I hereby nominate Kenji Siratori . This is my evidence , the first lines of Blood electric:

    " <<I record the vital-icon+our chromosome form escape of the suck=blood chromosome::the horizon of the body fluid= murder like the dog that was done to nude gene= TV/spasm// "

    Yes. It goes on like that.
    "Man was made for joy and woe;
    And when this we rightly know
    Through the world we safely go" Blake

  15. #15
    Good morning, Campers! Jay's Avatar
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    And you kept reading... for how long? I'm pretty sure I'd close the book in disgust after reading these first lines and randomly checking that he keeps that up for all the book...
    I have a plan: attack!

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