I come to bury M.T., not to praise him.
M.T. is -- was -- an author. And like all of us, he had his flaws.
MT's flaw was pride. Or maybe ego. I don't remember. But he came to to MOA an innocent, more or less. He came and he did the one thing no author is allowed to do here, ever. He complained.
Not the usual complaint. He wasn't angry at any review he'd received or upset over how people treated him in the forum. No, MT's complaint was, at first blush, hardly anything worth getting upset over. He simply wished that people would talk about his book after getting it for free.
Now, we all know it's wrong for an author to expect anything once a customer has their book. It's theirs, of course. They are entitled to talk about it or remain silent. That's their right.
Until yesterday, I thought perhaps an author had a right as well. The right to complain -- not to the customer -- but to other authors. or at least just generally in the forum.
MT didn't start out a monster. He started out as a writer who had a thought. It was a simple thought.
And they killed him for it.
Not immediately, of course. It started with the usual posts pretending to engage in reasoned discourse. But that didn't last.
It never does.
Soon a crowd gathered. A crowd with pointy sticks. They began to gently poke MT. So gently that at first MT thought he was having a discussion.
But soon enough the attacks came fast and furious and MT, perhaps not the brightest light in the sky, fought back. But by then there was blood in the water and it was too late.
Three pages...seven...ten...forty... They kept coming. Attacking, dissecting, page snapping, preaching, explaining.
In the end, there was nothing left of MT. Just a small pile of bloody, pointy sticks.
He was a man. He was a storyteller. And yes, he was a fool. Three things this cold, virtual world, is not overly fond of.
I can't say MT will be missed. Or that his death was not in vain. But I can hope. Hope for a day when the forums are more than an ambush. A day when writers and readers can engage in normal discourse without the taste of blood tainting every post.
A day when a writer, or a Scamp, or a G.Faso, or an Anna, or a Stargate, can make a mistake and not be condemned to drag it with them, like some bloated albatross, until the end of their days.
A day when an Amazon Review Mafia, both real and imagined, will be a forgotten memory. A day when a person is not judged by the words in their posts, but by the unique and holy spark that flickers in all of us.
Goodbye MT. You ended your life here as a monster, but we will remember you for what you were from the beginning to the end. A holy spark among holy sparks. You were one of us and we should have loved you.
And let us say, Amen.
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