Yesterday, when I shared some things that Annie Dillard has on her website home page, I was mainly wondering about the role of social media in the life of an uber-successful author. I found it interesting that she so brazenly stated on her home page all of the things that she does not have time to do.
I did not, however, expect the voracity of responses in the comment thread:
“Dillard’s opening statement smacks of arrogance and self-indulgence…”
“I don’t anticipate ever having Dillard’s status but it’ll be a sad day if I ever become consumed with myself at the exclusion of others.”
“We just find time to do what we want to do. She just doesn’t want to help people.”
“Annie Dillard came of age as a writer in a time before social media. With respect, she doesn’t seem like she knows what she’s talking about.”
A question came dancing up out of this comment thread, something I haven’t spent much time thinking about in the past: Why do we want the authors whose work we enjoy to be nice people?
If you found out your favorite author was a total jerk, would you stop reading them? Do we hold other celebrities (actors, movie stars, professional athletes) to that kind of standard?
If the authors you love create enjoyable, well-written books or blogs, does it matter to you whether or not they are nice people?