Amy 7/31

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“Not a real reg”

Since: Jan 13

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#1
Jul 31, 2013
 
Dear Amy: I recently published my first book. Although it is fiction, a lot of the events and characters are based on my real life experiences and the main character is based on me (though her actions are very different from mine).

I wrote the book under a pen name because I was afraid of negative feedback, but I told a few friends who I thought I could trust. One of these friends, however, does not like the way I portrayed a character that I loosely based on her.
Instead of coming to me with her concerns (in a phone call or an e-mail) she has written an online review that is more of a personal attack on me than a review of my book. She has accused me of “viciously attacking” her, of “not being over my jealousy of her,” and “needing counseling.”

None of this is true. I used to feel jealous of her, but the jealousy my fictional character has is much exaggerated from what I actually felt. How can I convey to her that while this fictional character shares many of her attributes, it is not her?

My editor says that I shouldn’t have to defend my work and that I should not respond and risk my reputation as a writer. I am, however, sad that I may have lost, and definitely damaged, this friendship. What, if anything, would be the best way to approach her?-- Writer

Dear Writer: Writing under a pen name because you are “afraid of negative feedback” is cowardly. Negative feedback is one of many risks you take as a writer and until you can truly claim ownership of your work (no matter what name you use), you will be on the run — creatively, anyway.

I agree with your editor. Your work stands on its own, and I assure you that you will never win an online spitting war with a reader. Engaging will only draw attention to the issue, and unless this would generate interest in your book (or sales) I suggest you leave it alone. If her review is nothing but a personal attack you should contact the site administrator and discuss having the post removed.

If you have something actual to apologize for, you should do so bravely — and personally. You will not be able to repair this friendship, but it might make you feel better to convey:“This is a work of fiction based loosely on my own life and experiences. I’m sorry you take offense. None was intended. Thank you for reading my novel.”

Dear Amy: I’m a single mom in a serious relationship with a guy for almost three years. He’s very caring and honest. I know he loves me a lot. He loves my daughter, too.

The problem is that he lives with his parents one hour away, and we only see each other once a week (but we talk on the phone every day).

When we first met, he made a promise to me that after a year, if our relationship works out, we will get married. After two years I asked him about marriage, and he said he’s not ready. We didn’t talk for a whole month after that.

He is from a different background and religion, and his family controls him.

His family doesn’t know about me. He’s too scared to tell his parents about us. What should I do?-- N

Dear N: Allowing a man to deny your existence to his family is bad enough, but allowing him to deny your daughter’s existence should stir an important maternal instinct in you. This is not healthy.

After three years of waiting for marriage, you should know in your bones that your guy will never be ready.

Dear Amy:“Grammatically Correct Lady” wanted to correct her date’s grammar.

If anyone I was dating asked for permission to correct my grammar, this would be my answer:

“I’d be happy to work on improving my grammar, but it would be improper for me to date my teacher. So let’s leave that job to someone else.”-- Jon in New York

Dear Jon: Nice!

Since: Jan 10

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#2
Jul 31, 2013
 

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Redheadwglasses1
7:20 AM CDT
L1: I'm guessing your friend posted a review on somehting like amazon.com . I assure you, if I read her review as you described, I"d think there's something wrong with her. And I think Amy gave you good comments/advice.

L2: Maybe you should call his wife and let her know how you're doing.

L3: Yeah, you're HILARIOUS.

“Fort Kickass”

Since: Sep 09

Bloomington, IL

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#3
Jul 31, 2013
 
L1: So? If I'm reading a book review that attacks the author and claims that the character is based on the reviewer, I'm going to dismiss it entirely. She's making herself look crazy.

L2: So, you're dating a neckbearded basement dweller and he won't marry you. That is SUCH a loss.

L3: Ooh, burn.*eyeroll*

“suffers from formicophilia ”

Since: May 09

United States

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#4
Jul 31, 2013
 

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1- Looks like you have one less friend.

2- Three years? Three years and his family knows nothing about you? The time to move on was about two and a half years ago. Get with it.

3- But, what if you ARE dating a teacher?

“Licensed to Ill”

Since: Aug 08

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#5
Jul 31, 2013
 

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LW1: Pretty sure it would be a waste of time to even try to repair that relationship.

LW2: Sounds like a winner. <rolls eyes> He lives with his parents and won’t even move out with mommy and daddy, after 3 years of dating, is scared to tell mommy and daddy you exist and are dating, and is controlled by his family. It’s the loser trifecta. The guy sounds worse than a child. Damaged goods.

LW3: It really depends on how long you’ve known each other, I think.

Since: Jan 10

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#6
Jul 31, 2013
 

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If the guy is telling the truth (and I don't think he is), then his families religious beliefs mean he will NEVER marry her.

Toj

“Equality”

Since: Jul 12

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#7
Jul 31, 2013
 

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L1: I think Amy's advice was on target.

L2: Are you sure it's his parents or his wife that he's keeping secret from you?

L3: Correcting grammar can be rude.

“Walt Frazier for POTUS”

Since: Dec 07

DuPage County

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#8
Jul 31, 2013
 

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1: Thanks for writing such a long-winded explanation of your conundrum. I'd never want to read anything else you've written based on this.

2: face it, it's not gonna happen. Move on.

3: after struggling thru the first 2 letters, I could care less about the cornball knee slapper response.

“The two baby belly, please!”

Since: Sep 09

Evanston IL

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#9
Jul 31, 2013
 

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LW1: Bleck, Amy gave good advice.

If the friend can separate reality from fiction, then you probably don't want them as a friend anyway.

LW2: So, now that you have Amy's permission, are you finally gonna leave this guy?

LW3: Darn. I was really hoping there was some bad punctuation that I could call out.

Smug rehash is not tasty.
not a ghost

San Antonio, TX

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#10
Jul 31, 2013
 

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I wouldn't buy LW1's book.

LW2 looks like a side dish.

LW3 belongs in the best joke thread.

“...,to wit”

Since: Jun 09

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#11
Jul 31, 2013
 

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L1 If LW used fake names and changed circumstances enough the general public would have no idea who the characters"really" were. By complaining , presumably on Amazon, the aggrieved friend has outed herself.

L2. Think forward a bit. If he did marry you, think of the type of people you would have for in laws. If they control him, they would either control you, pressure him or pull him away or ostracize you.

L3 If she wants to correct your grammar just offer to dangle your participle in public, sort of.

Since: Jan 10

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#12
Jul 31, 2013
 
PEllen wrote:
L3 If she wants to correct your grammar just offer to dangle your participle in public, sort of.
Anthony WEiner gives this two (thumbs) up!

Did you hear on MSNBC this morning, one of the anchors called him "batshit crazy" on the air?
Cass

Rancho Cucamonga, CA

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#13
Jul 31, 2013
 

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LW1 - Ignore the crazy. Your friend circle has just diminished by one.

LW2 - You are NOT in a serious relationship. You are a piece of tail for somebody who has no intention whatsoever of marrying you. You need to start thinking more about your daughter and less about scratching your itch once a week.

LW3 - Oh, brother. That was boring the first time.

Toj

“Equality”

Since: Jul 12

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#14
Jul 31, 2013
 
RedheadwGlasses wrote:
<quoted text>
Anthony WEiner gives this two (thumbs) up!
Did you hear on MSNBC this morning, one of the anchors called him "batshit crazy" on the air?
Seriously? Love it!

(Well, he is.)

“...,to wit”

Since: Jun 09

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#15
Jul 31, 2013
 
RedheadwGlasses wrote:
<quoted text>
Anthony WEiner gives this two (thumbs) up!
Did you hear on MSNBC this morning, one of the anchors called him "batshit crazy" on the air?
Hadn't heard that although I agree.

I did see a bunch of Brit tabloid front pages that have had a field day with him. If I find it again, I post the link. The Sun was one of the papers.

Whatever else, he would not be able to run NYC effectively.What a contrast to Bloomberg or Giuliani.

“suffers from formicophilia ”

Since: May 09

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#16
Jul 31, 2013
 
RedheadwGlasses wrote:
<quoted text>
Anthony WEiner gives this two (thumbs) up!
Did you hear on MSNBC this morning, one of the anchors called him "batshit crazy" on the air?
See how democrats treat women? See how out of touch they are to think they can send naked pics of themselves and no one would care?

Since: Jan 10

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#17
Jul 31, 2013
 

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edogxxx wrote:
<quoted text>
See how democrats treat women? See how out of touch they are to think they can send naked pics of themselves and no one would care?
Oh give it up. We're not a monolithic group, and the GOP has members (heh) who do stupid sexist crap.

Toj

“Equality”

Since: Jul 12

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#18
Jul 31, 2013
 

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RedheadwGlasses wrote:
<quoted text>
Oh give it up. We're not a monolithic group, and the GOP has members (heh) who do stupid sexist crap.
True. The difference is that male democrats tend to get into trouble about having affairs with women and male republicans tend to get into trouble having affairs with other men.:)

“What's it to ya?”

Since: Mar 09

Seattle, WA

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#19
Jul 31, 2013
 
RedheadwGlasses wrote:
If the guy is telling the truth (and I don't think he is), then his families religious beliefs mean he will NEVER marry her.
I'm with you. I think he's married. However if he is telling the truth, and he is this cowed by his family and their cultural and religious expectations, then yeah, he will never marry her. Wait, in either case he will never marry her so she needs to move on.

“What's it to ya?”

Since: Mar 09

Seattle, WA

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#20
Jul 31, 2013
 
RedheadwGlasses wrote:
<quoted text>
Oh give it up. We're not a monolithic group, and the GOP has members (heh) who do stupid sexist crap.
Heh you said "members."

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