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Knickers? Twisted.

Yes. Yes, they are. I am all righteously indignant and flushed with… uh, with… hurtitude. Why? Let me sum up:

1) A  literary agent in California was the victim of an attempted carjacking last night. Except it turns out she was attacked by someone who had queried her and been rejected (aka a Total And Complete LOONIE). The police found the guy by checking her e-mails, going to his house, and identifying him from the bite from her protective dog. GOOD DOG! Treats FOREVER!!!

2) Twitter exploded with this last night as it happened in real time, and the agent tweeted about her experience. She admitted part of the reason this nut job was able to find her was because she used Four Square and other check-in applications, which she will not be doing ever again.

3) IN NO WAY was this her fault. IN NO WAY is she to blame for this attack.

4) And then… (this is where the black cloud settled over my head) agents, editors and other people in publishing started smacking on writers/authors. “Why can’t writers accept that no means no?” “Writers need to understand that normal people have boundaries.” “Writer’s need to learn how to handle rejection.” “Another author-behaving-badly scenario.”

Ahem. No. No, it’s not.

Are all postal workers insane because one person went, you know, POSTAL and shot up his/her workplace? Are all people who buy fertilizer planning on blowing up a building? Are all writers going to hunt down people who reject them and smash their heads against their steering wheels?


The guy who attacked her is not well. More than anything he is or isn’t, his not-wellness has to be Number One. He’s not an author or a writer, he’s a sociopath and a danger to everyone. This response from Rachel Vincent on Book Goggles: “…I wouldn’t call this an “author behaving badly.” I’d call this a *crime.* In spite of the apparent trigger (rejection), this attack had nothing to do with the attacker being a writer and everything to do with him being a criminal, and obviously mentally unstable.”

I’ve been rejected a number of times. I’ve never shed a tear. It’s part of the biz. You know it. I know it. 99.99999% of writers know it. The guy who attacked Pam was NOT part of the writing business, but was a train-wreck waiting to happen. His illness and inability to behave within the normal confines of society define him FAR MORE than his being a writer, if he even is a writer.

My knickers feel slightly less twisted now. Thank you for reading this. And Pam, my thoughts are with you and your family. Stay safe, agents. Stay safe, editors. We really do appreciate you.

UPDATE: A few other people weigh in on this, too.


Nathan Bransford

The LA Times

Book Goggles


4 Responses

  1. Amen, Sister!! Exactly what you said. Take a bow. 🙂

    • Thank you. I just couldn’t shake the bad feeling I got last night reading those tweets. I hope not all people in publishing feel this way about writers. *shudder*

  2. Perfectly said. Exactly. Thank you for defending the rights of the non-crazies!

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