If you're at all involved in the book community, then I'm sure you've heard the story circulating about the author who faked her death, only to come back 2 years later and be like, "Oops, just kidding!" If you have no idea what I'm talking about, go read THIS POST. Go on. I'll wait...
Is your mind blown? Your jaw on the floor? Can't fully wrap your mind around what you just read? Yeah, me too. I've been following this story and all the bizarre updates as they happen, and all I can say is WOW!
In addition to this scandal, there are a handful of authors behaving very badly on Twitter -- namely, they are attacking reviewers, bloggers, booktubers, etc. And I don't just mean authors upset and voicing that online about a bad review. I'm talking personal attacks, threats, name calling, reporting the reviewers videos / reviews / profiles, etc.
All of this has led me to ask two very important questions:
Do the authors behaving this way truly feel like this behavior is gaining them any favor? I can't tell you how many times I've seen readers say they won't ever buy or read a certain author because of how they've acted online. Which leads me to circle back to that advice above:
No publicity is bad publicity!
Sorry, but when you're acting like a fool online, when you're throwing fits and attacking others in the community, when you're lying and scamming and emotionally harming others, that's not good. I don't see anyway that sort of behavior can be spun into something positive.
Are people talking about the "author who faked her death?" You betcha! Are they flocking to buy her books? Nope!
Are people talking about the author(s) attacking reviewers? Absolutely! Are they flocking to buy their books? I doubt it! (Unless, of course, they are buying to read and review with the sole intent of rating low / negatively, but that's a different post for a different day.)
Now, let me be clear that I have never spoken to the "dead" author, and I've never read her books. Nor have I ever attacked or otherwise interacted with a reader / reviewer who didn't like my books. I do, however, know how hard it is to get noticed in a very crowded industry, and I know that the desperation to stand out can be strong. But just how far is too far?
So, what say you, readers? Where's the line in terms of getting your name out there and selling books? What behaviors will you absolutely not forgive and cause you to stop reading / supporting an author?