A meme is born
May 2, 2008 4:13 PM   Subscribe

I'm heading to the cottage in Aruba. Please summarize and have it on my desk first thing Monday morning.
posted by jimmythefish at 4:20 PM on May 2, 2008

Hopefully this meme is strangled at birth and this post is deleted ASAP. There are thousands of poorly written misogynistic novels out there. Why give this one any attention?
posted by kozad at 4:21 PM on May 2, 2008 [1 favorite]

He was always my least favorite Beatle
posted by fearfulsymmetry at 4:25 PM on May 2, 2008

Until I clicked "more inside," I thought this post was a first horrified response to the discovery of real-people slash fiction. Color me relieved.
posted by Countess Elena at 4:36 PM on May 2, 2008 [6 favorites]

Thats some not good stuff. I think he might have the racist dragon obsessive beaten.
posted by Artw at 4:39 PM on May 2, 2008

I love things like this, so utterterly insane, so demented, so oblivious to anything even resembling good taste that they manage to transcend the shit and vomit from which they sprung and emerge into beautifully formed flowers of hate and cruelty. This makes a great companion peice to the GG Allin doc someone posted a couple of weeks ago. A-fucking-plus i_am_a_jedi.
posted by PostIronyIsNotaMyth at 4:43 PM on May 2, 2008

Metafilter: Because the *good* guys want to get laid, too. Understand?
posted by furtive at 4:57 PM on May 2, 2008

Where the first novel only focused on portraying Mike's hard-assedness and the depths of his depravity, the second features big chunks of him just interacting with characters *without killing or fucking them.*

It is a joy to watch an author grow.
posted by cortex at 5:06 PM on May 2, 2008 [11 favorites]

I came across this during a short foray into the LJ community during OpenSourceBoobProjectGate and had a inexplicable half-moment during which I considered posting it to MetaFilter. Decided not to because, you know, it's a tl;dr livejournal post.
posted by youarenothere at 5:17 PM on May 2, 2008


OH i_am_a_jedi NO.

I'm with kozad on this. I can find nothing that sets this above or aside from the rushing rivers of literary shit (both bat and bull), and regret the time I wasted looking for something.
posted by wendell at 5:19 PM on May 2, 2008

I read this the other day, thought it was funny, although a bit too precious -- reviews like this are better when they are written with a less heavy-handed use of catchphrases and the like. (Am I the only person who will admit to putting those books on my "buy used and cheap" list? Bad fiction like this is almost a kind of outsider-art, and is compelling in the same way.)
posted by Forktine at 5:19 PM on May 2, 2008

I debated about posting it, but I really got a kick out of it at work today. I figured for a friday night, somebody might stumble in three-sheets tonight and have a quick laugh.

And this is exactly how I feel about all of the really really bad (I'm looking at you Total Recall) B-action movies that I love: it is so horrifically awful that it becomes TOTALLY FUCKING AWESOME.
posted by i_am_a_Jedi at 5:33 PM on May 2, 2008

I read the entire article.

My only question is this: Are the effects permanent? I mean, uh... I don't think I'll ever be able to experience arousal or an orgasm ever again. Not more than an hour ago the fires burned bright and warm. Some would say too warmly. And now? Now there's just this lump of cold, wet coal where my heart should be. So empty and cold.
posted by loquacious at 5:52 PM on May 2, 2008 [4 favorites]

Why is this virulent sewage slathered here?
posted by PareidoliaticBoy at 6:06 PM on May 2, 2008

I skimmed the book, but I've blocked out most of it. All I remember is the author's obsession with stuffing tampons into bullet wounds.
posted by BrotherCaine at 6:07 PM on May 2, 2008

Really? There are books like this? Published and everything?

(I just can't get past "Kildar". It sounds like a cheesy robot from some horrible 50s B-movie. KILDAR ATTACK!)
posted by LeeJay at 6:16 PM on May 2, 2008

Would this be any different from, say, OH JOHN NORMAN NO ?
posted by Maxson at 6:16 PM on May 2, 2008 [3 favorites]

If this were my Front Page Post I would have included the OH JOHN RINGO NO bit as part of a larger examination of Baen Books. Baen is fascinating. A successful publishing company built mostly by the drive and instincts of the late Jim Baen. Always known for a focus on old school plot-driven prose-irrelevant adventurish SF, Baen (among other things) took a chance on an unknown author named Lois Bujold, who has since become the only person to tie Heinlein's record for Best Novel Hugos. Sadly, Baen's efforts in recent years to bring back good old sf that has been out of print for a time (James Schmitz, etc) has been overshadowed by the increasingly radically right wing slant to a lot of Baen's stuff.

This came to a head in the publication of Tom Kratman's work. In his first book, the United States is torn apart when the Presidency is taken by a thinly veiled Hillary Clinton (except lesbian) who destroys the country, backed by her liberal and gay allies. He later followed it up by writing, with John Ringo (subject of this FPP), what basically amounts to an apologia for the WAFFEN SS. Yes, the Waffen SS.

And this doesn't even get into how Baen was almost destroyed by the publication of Newt Gingrich's novel, 1945. It wasn't Baen's fault; he correctly anticipated demand, but the big chains insisted on ordering an order of magnitude more copies than Baen wanted to print, and (surprise surprise) ended up returning 90% of them.

At least that's what I'd do, it it were my FPP.
posted by Justinian at 6:17 PM on May 2, 2008 [10 favorites]

Oh yeah, Baen is also the home of Baen's Bar, an insular web forum dominated by right wingers. This is a place where "the evolution debate" is avoided not because people are tired of dealing with crazies but because it becomes an actual debate with large numbers of regulars actually arguing against the evolutionists who treat science as their religion. And so on.
posted by Justinian at 6:19 PM on May 2, 2008

John Ringo: Heinlein's love child out of Limbaugh's fat ass.

A soft, startlingly chinless middle-aged guy obsessed with ex-navy Seals and whores:

"How many whores have you fucked in some third world shithole?" Mike asked, turning to look at him. "We're the reason this goes on. You can't just say 'it's males' when you're one of the males that benefited by it."

"Tell me something I don't know." Adams shrugged. "I don't notice you losing sleep over it."

"I do, sometimes," Mike admitted. "And I'm the one that enjoys beating on women. I wish I had the money to buy up every whore and potential whore on the planet and put them someplace safe."

"But if you did, you'd just have more kidnappings."

"There's that," Mike admitted, sighing.

"You ever think about this whole system as a good thing?" Adams asked.

"What in the hell do you mean by that?" Mike snarled.

"Think about it," Adams replied calmly. "In the States, the predators snatch some girl off the street, rape her and kill her. Here, they snatch them off the street, rape them and sell them. Alive."

Of course! How could we have been so blind? If we want to save our little girls from murder by child rapists, all we have to do is arrange for them to be able to sell them into prostitution after they've had their fill of raping them.

Isn't a truly free market a wonderful thing?

Thank you, John Ringo!
posted by jamjam at 6:19 PM on May 2, 2008

"He'd spent his entire sexually adult life fighting the urge to not use his inconsiderable strength..."

That's a double/triple negative, right?

If he is fighting the urge to NOT use his inconsiderable strength, then he does in fact have the urge to NOT use his inconsiderable strength, but is resisting said urge, so he DOES want to use his strength. Plus, his strength is inconsiderable and therefore insignificant. So, to paraphrase, he wants to use his insignificant strength. Did I get that right?
posted by wsg at 6:31 PM on May 2, 2008 [3 favorites]


Not to contradict a thing you said, but Baen also puts out the 1632 series by Eric Flint, an unabashedly pro-labor union series written by a former member of the Socialist Workers Party. Just pointing out that while right-wing authors in fiction are still a very real phenomenon, and Baen's published some truly questionable stuff, they're not an exclusive or strictly ideological publishing house these days.
posted by graymouser at 6:39 PM on May 2, 2008 [2 favorites]

No, they aren't strictly an ideological publishing house. I pointed out in my post that they've been doing god's work in republishing a lot of SF that wouldn't been seen otherwise. But there is no denying the trend; Baen's output is increasingly ideological.
posted by Justinian at 6:42 PM on May 2, 2008

Metafilter: I wish I had the money to buy up every whore and potential whore on the planet and put them someplace safe
posted by Lentrohamsanin at 6:43 PM on May 2, 2008

Agreeing with the idea that this is almost like bad outsider art. Where else might you read such a glorious literary passage : "I didn't risk my fucking life to have you go lesbo on me"?
posted by mannequito at 6:48 PM on May 2, 2008

So these books are like Ayn Rand, but celebrate sexual violence? Oh, wait...
posted by xchmp at 7:16 PM on May 2, 2008

I lost an astonishing amount of time with this traffic wreck. I lost even more time when I wandered, from that page, into THE OPEN SOURCE BOOB PROJECT. [not necessarily a traffic wreck]

[not trafficwreckist]
posted by flotson at 7:22 PM on May 2, 2008

I totally misread this line as: "He'd spent his entire sexually adult life fighting the urge to not use his inconsiderable girth..."

Now that's the sort of book I'd like to read.
posted by Hildegarde at 7:34 PM on May 2, 2008

Baen also recently picked up the wonderful fantasy author P. C. Hodgell, and I believe is planning to reissue her earlier books when her next one comes out. She's another strange bedfellow to see next to radical right-wing SF. I've been wondering for ages if I should make an FPP about her.

As for John Ringo ... I've never bought any of his books, but sometimes I leaf through them at the bookstore and laugh at them. So I guess he brings a smile to the world ...
posted by kyrademon at 8:06 PM on May 2, 2008 [1 favorite]

doesn't this guy go back and read what he's written? i mean, to access the more complex brain-functions?
posted by gorgor_balabala at 8:10 PM on May 2, 2008

[And btw it should be "not inconsiderable", and "than", not "then". Grammar first, kiddies! Then you can have all the rape and mayhem you want!]
posted by gorgor_balabala at 8:12 PM on May 2, 2008

I read "Gust Front" when I was about 15 or so. I do believe it was the first book that I ever -- and I do mean ever -- threw away. John Ringo, you are a fucking nut.
posted by Avenger at 9:12 PM on May 2, 2008

I think we're all overlooking the softer, more tender side of John Ringo... John Ringo - webcomic fanboy.

Baen SF author John Ringo was profoundly affected by Sluggy [Freelance] while writing his Legacy of the Aldenata series; as a result, the crew of a massive mobile artillery platform that first appears in the third book of this series (When the Devil Dances) are depicted as die-hard Sluggy fanatics to comedic effect [...] A section of original Sluggy comics set in the alternate future world of the novels appears in the end of Hell's Faire, and a sampler of Sluggy storylines is included on the CD-ROM bound into this book.
posted by ormondsacker at 9:23 PM on May 2, 2008

gorgor_balabala said: doesn't this guy go back and read what he's written? i mean, to access the more complex brain-functions?

Funny you should mention that. He was doing a reading at a store where I was doing some shopping. (I wasn' t there to see him, and in fact, an employee who knows me tried to steer me away when I came through the door.)

Anyway, so there he was, reading this dreck...and oh dear lord, it's worse when it's spoken...and he was actually surprised by something in the book. You could see it. He stopped, looked at the page, looked at the audience...a rather scary bunch of mouthbreathers, truth be told...and then sort of did a shrug and a shake and kept on reading like it was all new to him.

So, I'd have to say No...no, he doesn't go back and read it. Unless you offer him a coffee and a muffin. And two or three guys in moldering old t-shirts and the bitter cat taint of mother's basement who will listen to him with the slack jawed drooling adoration that they must have once showered upon their wookie dolls.
posted by dejah420 at 9:25 PM on May 2, 2008 [12 favorites]

This is not the Ringo you are looking for.
posted by chillmost at 9:40 PM on May 2, 2008

dejah420, please never become angry with me. I don't think I could survive the harsh glare of your disdain.
posted by Justinian at 9:42 PM on May 2, 2008 [2 favorites]

MetaFilter: the bitter cat taint of mother's basement
posted by LeeJay at 9:48 PM on May 2, 2008

Thank you for posting this.
I hung out on Baen's Bar in my teenage years (before the 2000 elections and 9-11, when the consie became vividly apparent) and actually ended up sitting on John Ringo's lap at a con party. Skeevy.
posted by limnrix at 9:50 PM on May 2, 2008 [1 favorite]

Would this be any different from, say, OH JOHN NORMAN NO ?

posted by PeterMcDermott at 1:08 AM on May 3, 2008

This would be the second person I have heard mention John Ringo.

The first person would be this Boy Scout gone wrong who spends too much of his meager income on blowing things up and attending various war reenactments, in between shoving Warhammer 40k books at me and generally depising liberals in a tone I am more used to hearing from greybeards who rant about "Hanoi Jane."

If fiction can even partially be defined by its fans, I have just enough data points to draw a line - somewhere at the end of which is MechaRonPaul.
posted by adipocere at 6:48 AM on May 3, 2008 [1 favorite]

Not to contradict a thing [Justinian] said, but Baen also puts out the 1632 series by Eric Flint, an unabashedly pro-labor union series written by a former member of the Socialist Workers Party.

That's at least in part because once Jim Baen published an author, he never dropped him (or occasionally her) no matter what. Seriously, the only author I can think of who was dropped by Baen for the quality of their writing was Leo Frankowski for something that was only separated from lowest quality fanfic by the use of a spellchecker. (Seriously, there's an excerpt somewhere online - he's self-publishing it - but I'm not prepared to order the necessary amount of brain bleach required to find it although I do recall the opening chapters involved the hero being stuck on a floating somethingorother with a green female alien who kept him alive through feeding him her breast milk). See also: Post-stroke Keith Laumer (pre-stroke he was pretty good in his way) although I'm not aware Laumer was ever quite so morally icky as Frankowski.

What was needed to sell a first book to Jim Baen seemed to be pacing (the one good feature of the Da Vinci Code), military-esque good guys, and big battles or big explosions. Eric Flint's first book had that (Mother of Demons - crash landed colony ship lands on alien world and amongst other things needs to militarise for self defence). And once he was in he was in. Likewise Lois McMaster Bujold, despite the fact that the second book Jim Baen bought off her had a Mary Sue female lead and the male lead (so the essays in Dreamweavers Dilemma strongly imply) in the early drafts was a Klingon. (And Bujold is a good enough writer that my copy of Shards of Honour is dogeared despite those flaws).

Eric Flint is a socialist, granted. And Lois McMaster Bujold seems to be a genuine conservative of the decent, honourable, clear thinking, and not wanting things to break kind that is all too rare, particularly in current America (where they probably vote Democratic but I digress). But most of those who want to write violent or military protagonists and action that is too fast paced to allow much time for introspection would appear to be either pretty right wing (such as David Drake or David Weber) or completely round the twist right wing (such as John Ringo or Tom Kratman). And then there's a feedback loop with such authors that drives and draws Baen Books further right. And a further feedback loop since September the 11th and significant sections of right wing America turning so right wing they can only fly round in circles.

The other notable feature of Baen is that they hardly edit. Once Jim Baen bought a book, that seems to have been it. (I don't know how much has changed since the death of Jim Baen). He would then publish almost as is. This means that authors seem not to improve over time when with Baen as they don't get the necessary criticism to keep them from follies - and if they aren't improving, their flaws seem to get more evident and take up a greater proportion of their books. To give two examples, Honor Harrington gets sillier and sillier and starts tossing around fleets with megaweapons rather than commanding an outgunned ship - and Leo Frankowski reigns back on the interesting engineering and industrial revolutionising stuff with the Cross-time Engineer, and instead concentrates on the really creepy and icky sexual politics he seems to like. The only two authors who I can think of who have got better over time with Baen are Bujold (who has her new work rigourously critiqued by her friends before submitting it) and Flint (whose politics put him in direct conflict with most of Baen so he gets far more flack than the other authors do).
posted by Francis at 7:38 AM on May 3, 2008 [6 favorites]

I believe Patrick Stewart is starring in the upcoming Paladin of Shadows movie.
posted by EarBucket at 8:40 AM on May 3, 2008 [1 favorite]

What does "Lord King Badfic" mean?
posted by Kattullus at 11:34 AM on May 3, 2008

I skimmed the main link yesterday for laughs, but didn't see that Baen Books published it. Fucking hilarious (I wondered who'd publish something like this).

As far as politics go, I know one Baen author who is very much a Democrat. His book is also crap, embarrassingly so. Lack of rigorous editing and low standards for acceptance would explain that. Thanks for insight about Baen, Francis.
posted by D.C. at 3:06 PM on May 3, 2008

If you want to see a case-in-point result of Baen's editing decisions, compare David Weber's last couple Baen novels with his first Tor Books novel, OFF ARMAGEDDON REEF. No one would ever confused REEF with a tightly-plotted book but the sheer amount of actual plot in it is staggering when compared to how buried in extra verbiage the plot fragments in his later Baen works are.

I suppose that's the difference between being edited by a Hugo winner like Patrick (Nielsen Hayden) and, well, not being edited at all like at Baen.
posted by Justinian at 5:52 PM on May 3, 2008 [2 favorites]

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