Tuesday, August 22, 2006


I haven’t read this book yet. The title, it’s so negative. Frightens me a little. Shouting it out- this book is most certainly not, please do not confuse it with, we would never! It is NOT, no way, Chick-lit.

I like chick-lit. Sure, why not? What’s not to like when you are in the mood for a light story, something a little funny, a little flirty. Chick-lit can be as entertaining and delicious as a Julia Roberts flick and a bucket of buttery popcorn. It may or may not change your view of the world but it will sweep you away into someone else’s life and that’s the point of a book, right?

This Is Not Chick Lit has a host of outstanding female authors, I hold them in high regard. But still, what’s wrong with chick-lit? Please tell me. This is NOT Crap! This is NOT a bad book. I think I found the title of my next novel.

There’s another book out there, a rebuttal against This is NOT called This Is Chick-Lit. These ladies are proud to be in this genre, they wear the badge of frothy female novels happily. It's seems like there's a big rift between literary novelists and those who are considered “chick-lit” authors. Who has purchased a chick lit novel in the cover of night, mortified you might be caught with a book that’s printed by Red Dress Ink? Oh..is that what you’re reading these days? Snort.

I want to know- where’s the love? Why can’t we all just get along? I know we all enjoy a good literary novel, think something like Triangle by Katharine Weber, a sweeping historical ,
Memoirs of a Geisha comes to mind, or sometimes we long for a humorous take on the absurdities of life, like Lauren Weisburger created in Devil Wears Prada.

Different authors for different moods. We are so lucky to have them all to suit our many needs. Each vibrant and prolific and wonderful in her own way. I am admiration of authors that can cobble together an entirely cohesive book out of blank pages and twenty-six letters of the alphabet. My hats off to each of you fabulous ladies.

Good books are good books. We can all peacefully coexist. Authors are a talented and generous bunch. Why pit chick-lit authors against well, other female authors? Is this a competition? Straight out of West Side Story, its the Sharks (literary) versus the Jets (chick-lit). When is the official rumble? And remind me, why are you on two different sides of the same story?

There’s room for all of us isn’t there? Yes, I think so.

And by the way, This Is NOT Another Blog.


Anonymous Leslie said...
Great post!! I also saw both these titles on amazon recently and felt like this title (This is NOT Chick Lit) was condescending. I love all genres - can't we all just get along? ;)

Anyway, I cannot wait to read YOUR book when it is published. You have true talent and insight. I really enjoy your blog. @ 10:05 PM  
Blogger Manic Mom said...
Cindy, you truly ARE amazing. You said it so perfectly!

It's just like the battle between the stay-at-home moms and the working-out-of-the-home moms... why can't we just support each other?

I can't wait for THIS IS CHICK LIT to come out. I'll admit, I will read the IS NOT book, but I'm already jaded.

And yes, make sure to widely publicize your awesome book when it's published--soon, right?!?!?!
xo feeling the love all around! @ 11:46 AM  
Blogger Lucie Simone said...
I agree with you whole heartedly. I read books of all genres, and I think we need to have all these different works in order to suit all of our many moods. Sometimes you need something heavy like "The Fountainhead" by Ayn Rand and other times you just want to laugh your ass off with something like "Sushi For Beginners" by Marian Keyes (which contains many serious issues such as homelessness, depression, etc). It's all about finding the right book for the right mood. I believe there's plenty of room for everything. @ 4:25 PM  
Blogger Black Artemis said...
Great post, Cindy. The only thing I would add is that there is some chick lit that deals with substantive issues. Granted, they are not the norm, but they do exist. Nor is a novel automatically good just because it is literary. My guess is that literary authors are angry at the success of chick lit and feel that it makes it difficult for them to get the attention from the publishing industry they feel they deserve. This is a universal issue regardless of media; the product that aims to be commercial is going to do better in the marketplace than the one that has a more artistic bent. Female literary authors should not attack chick lit writers but the industry decisionmakers that may not give them their due because they do not sell as well as more commercial authors. And they need to keep in mind that they cannot criticize chick lit authors without implicitly judging their readers, many of whom -- like the women who already posted -- also read literary fiction. In the end, we can and should support diverse yet quality writing regardless of the genre. @ 5:25 PM  
Blogger allrileyedup said...
I think the problem with the term "chick lit" is that some people have confidence and some people don't. And people who do have it don't care what you label their work as, as long as you're reading it, and people who don't have it want to make sure that they're making claims to the 'greater good' of their work, which they have been led to believe chick lit can't represent.

Do you recall when we had lunch and I was talking about how some writers needed to friggin get over themselves? This chick lit issue is part of my same gripe.

This is NOT a comment. @ 12:22 AM  
Blogger Lauren Baratz-Logsted said...
Cindy, you're blog is NOT just any blog, never has been! I agree women pitted against women gets tiresome but it does need to be pointed out that those of us associated with THIS IS CHICK-LIT - of which I'm editor and a contributor - have no agenda to diss literary fiction. We love, support, and spend our money on literary fiction - just as we do all kinds of books - so long as those books are well written. We merely wanted to make a positive statement about the diversity the Chick-Lit genre has to offer. If you get a chance to read the collection, I hope you'll agree. @ 9:05 AM  
Blogger allrileyedup said...
Another post on this book that you might enjoy:

http://www.mediabistro.com/galleycat/lit_crit/chick_lit_written_by_partygirls_not_mfas_42774.asp @ 10:39 AM  
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