Oprah's Book Club (Official) discussion

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General > Coarsening of society/Anti-semitism on the 'net?

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message 1: by Roger (last edited Oct 18, 2016 03:24PM) (new)

Roger Raffee | 21 comments Should we speak out when we are the victims of racism, or in my case, anti-Semitism? Or should we just suck it up and be quiet, and let the offenders wallow in their hate and ignorance, knowing they'll probably be that way for the rest of their lives?
Here is my brief story, why I am posting this: I sent out emails to book reviewers, hoping one of them would respond and read and review my book. I got a response from one book reviewing site by the name of New Podler Review Of Books. Particularly one person by the name of:
David "DED" Drazul .
There was something about the rejection I got that kind of rubbed me the wrong way. I have not responded in a negative fashion to anyone else I have approached about reviewing my book, but this one for some reason, just didn't seem right. Here is the private email correspondence between the two of us. You'll see by my response I was a little annoyed by the wording of the rejection, but it was more of a feeling I had about the rejection than anything else. The wording of the rejection wasn't so bad, but in the context of the nature of the book, being about the first Jewish Texas Ranger, the response just didn't feel right:

From: podlerstaff@gmail.com
"Dear Mr. Raffee,

Unfortunately, we're going to pass on the opportunity to review Devil Out of Texas. It just wasn't a match for our reviewers.

Best of luck to you with Devil Out of Texas and your future endeavors.

Sincerely,
The Podler Staff"

All other rejections have been a bit more explanative, it wasn't their genre, they're too piled high with other books to read, etc.. etc.. but this one just didn't seem right. I admit, it could have been my imagination.

And here is my response. Perhaps my response also rubbed Mr. Drazul the wrong way:

"You mean nobody there has an open mind, or likes a wild adventure? I put a free copy with the first 9 chapters on Amazon, if anyone there has the time to take a look at it.

Thanks,

-Roger"

If that was the end of it, fine. No harm to either of us. Mr. Drazul responded, perhaps appropriately from his point of view:

"Podler Review Staff, podlerstaff@gmail.com
Oct 15 (3 days ago)
to me

"No, we're all close-minded dullards."

OK, so I then responded to him:

"Roger Raffee
Oct 15 (3 days ago)

"to Podler

"OK, I'll take your word for it.."

A little harmless back and forth. I was a tiny bit offended, maybe I shouldn't have been, maybe he was too, maybe he shouldn't have been. No harm so far to either of us. A little polite back and forth disagreement at worst.

Then today I find my cover posted by David Drazul, representing New Podler, on Lousy Book Covers web site with the following caption.

“I told you, we’re all out of Texas. How about some Tel Aviv?” (h/t DED)

(In case you're wondering...the above is NOT a quote from the book)

Below that I also find posted on the Lousy Cover site the back and forth private email conversation I posted above, with his rejection comment edited to remove the part that I found questionable. Should I feel offended by this? I'm a brand new author, my first book, fairly new to Goodreads and this group, and I'm having a very hard time financially. Living in Mexico, subsistence living after a failed business. That is why my cover was made in an amateurish fashion. The book itself, the story, is something I worked hard at for a year and a half, and am very proud of. If I can get the money some day I will improve the cover. Am I right to feel offended and get this off my chest here? His statement about the book sure seems offensive to me, as if we Jews are out of Texas, now what about Tel Aviv...
Is there a better place to vent my frustration and anger? Or is it better to turn the other cheek when people say nasty things about the color of your skin, or your creed, or your religion?

It seem to me, looking at the broader picture, as if this whole Trump movement has made it fashionable and OK to be anti-Semitic and racist. Part of a blame game. Not just the minorities, but the banks, Wall Street, and the media, for putting Hillary in power, and ruining Trump, and all other problems they want to blame "others" for. It seems as if we're living in a new paradigm of society, and I'm not sure how to respond to stuff like this, or what to think of it. Thanks for considering what I'm saying.

Here is the posting if you wish to view it yourself:

http://lousybookcovers.com/?p=878789#...

And thanks for your advice,

-Roger Raffee
author of Devil Out Of Texas


message 2: by Mary (new)

Mary (Joyce4) | 5 comments Roger,
When you write, you put your heart and soul into it. I am going to write a book, and I know the rejection letters are going to be hard part of the process. I will read your pages. I feel he has overstepped the boundaries. I would contact the company, as he is not a good refection on their organization. I will read this on Sunday. I am taking classes and Sunday, is my day to relax.
Mary


message 3: by Roger (new)

Roger Raffee | 21 comments Mary wrote: "Roger,
When you write, you put your heart and soul into it. I am going to write a book, and I know the rejection letters are going to be hard part of the process. I will read your pages. I feel he..."


Hi Mary,
I'm very happy to know you'll be reading the book. I look forward to hearing what you think of it.
When I contacted his company he's the one who answered, so I assume he's an owner, or maybe the owner. I just thought people should know about his company, what kind of people they seem to be.
Posting my cover as a terrible cover is his right, kind of mean-spirited in my opinion, but posting an obviously anti-Semitic comment is reprehensible, especially given the limited correspondence between us. I am a person. I think and feel like other human beings. I don't live in Tel Aviv. I'm an American, and that's part of what my book is about.
I'd like to read your book someday. In my opinion you have to be able to get lost in your writing to the point where you don't notice the time going by, day after day, month after month. If you can do that, then you can write a book. At least that's how I wrote my book. Some days I'd start writing at 10 in the morning, look up and it was 6 in the evening. It felt like I got time transported, as if just an hour went by. That's how far I got lost into it. Thanks Mary.


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