My Musings

Is there any such thing as genre discrimination?

genre

Happy Sunday my treasured and most wonderful readers of this post, remember to be excellent to each other!

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On Friday I posted a post called TTBG’s Authorgate which yeah, it has ‘author‘ in the title. So, you guessed right! It was about an issue with an author. In it, I alluded to ‘genre discrimination‘ and so this is a sort of follow-up, more in-depth post on that little doozy.

I’ve seen the term ‘genre discrimination‘ bandied around recently by authors pulling up bloggers on what they choose to read! I know, shocking right! You wouldn’t think that reading should be FUN and that we should be able to read books and genres that we ENJOY! Heaven forbid! That’s a crazy idea, right?!? Perhaps we should applaud these authors for their ingenuity! You see, they didn’t use that old chestnut of stating that you don’t want to read their book due to them being an ‘indie author‘. Oh no, they put on their thinking caps, boxers, thongs and brassieres and came up with a new phrase ‘genre discrimination‘ to pull you up on! If you don’t want to read their book or to allow them to appear on your blog then you are discriminating against a whole entire genre! Ooohhh, someone can’t handle rejection!

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If we choose not to read certain genres then are we really discriminating against them?!? Personally, it seems like a strange term to me! I don’t read certain genres but I don’t see it as me discriminating against them, I just read what I know I like and I also stay away from things that I know don’t like, it’s not discriminating or even hating it’s purely making sure that I read books I will hopefully like and enjoy. That isn’t me discriminating, it’s me using my precious time wisely!

After all, we can’t read all the books, we can’t like all the books and we shouldn’t have to read every genre! Then! When we don’t read certain books within a genre would we then be discriminating against those specific books! Sigh, this could get confusing!πŸ˜‚

I really don’t think it’s discriminating though, it’s simply reading what we enjoy. We won’t watch films in certain genres or listen to music in certain genres because we don’t like them. I’m a rock and metal fan, does this now mean that I’m discriminating against other genres of music because I don’t listen to them?! I’m pretty sure that the gamers amongst us don’t play games in every genre either or the sports players out there, are they then discriminating because they choose to only play a certain sport and should, in fact, be playing all sports just so they don’t discriminate against any one particular sport. Can we not just listen, watch, read and play things that we know will bring us enjoyment?! Is that so bad?!

Hhhmmmm…..here’s a point that only a pedantic arsehole like me will make! If you as an author are pulling up bloggers for genre discrimination because we don’t read certain genres does that then mean that we can then pull you up on genre discrimination because you choose not to write certain genres?!? Ooohh, that’s a good one Drew!

What about book blogger discrimination! That sounds like a good term for me to start using! Authors! Every time you ask me to review your book when it clearly states that I’m closed to review requests you are discriminating against me as a lowly book blogger! Some of you may ask why it’s discrimination, well, I don’t really know! But, don’t let that worry you because I’m telling you that it is! That’s the only reason you need! And you know why?!?

Well! Quite simply, authors have coined the phrase ‘genre discrimination‘ due to bloggers declining to read and review their own books! No other reason. So, if it’s good enough for them, it’s good enough for me!πŸ˜‚ Told you I’m a pedantic arsehole!πŸ˜‰

I know that we discriminate against book covers. I remember a long time ago now Stephy at the Teacher of Y-A blog taught me the phrase ‘cover whore‘ – yes, I’m naive, I hadn’t heard of the term before and yes, I’m a good boy so I even had to look up what whore meant too!πŸ˜‚ But, that term means we buy books based on their covers and looks. Which is true, you see a fantastic cover, especially in a style that you like and you will be immediately drawn to it, probably making grabby hands and stating ‘want, want, want, mine, my precious‘ in the bookstore. And the opposite is true, we see bad and low-quality book covers and we immediately think, no, the cover doesn’t do anything for me, I don’t want to read the book. Which, technically, I guess means that we discriminate against poor book covers!

I’m not going to go into detail about indie authors and whether or not we discriminate against them as it’s not the point of the post. Some of us might do, admittedly, while others don’t, it is just what it is. For most of us, we can’t read all the books in the genres we read anyway and miss out on many awesome reads be they traditionally published or independently published by an indie author, how they are published is an irrelevance to many, a good book is a good book regardless. Likewise, a bad book is a bad book (though calling a book bad seems unfair, I apologise and perhaps there are no bad books only the wrong readers of the books). If we did choose to read only indie books wouldn’t we then be discriminating against traditionally published authors and books?!? Told you earlier, this gets confusing!πŸ˜‚

On a serious note, what about those book bloggers, sorry, book hookers who charge for reviews?!? They are discriminating against the rest of us who do this simply for our love of books. They are discriminating against us due to the fact that they are charging for reviews as that implies that they are better than us! Any of you book hookers who charge for reviews reading this, shout out and respond, please. Tell me why you deserve to be paid, why you are better than others and what right you have to charge for something that is a hobby! Ooohhh, burn! I’m on fire! If you my dear book hookers are on fire I’d highly suggest that you visit a doctor, being on fire down there isn’t normal and probably means that you caught something whilst selling your reviews!πŸ˜‚

Sorry, I went off on a tangent but you all are probably used to that with my rambling nonsense! Back on track, what happens then if bloggers start stating that other bloggers are discriminating against them for not following them, liking their posts, etc. It might sound stupid and it is but if genre discrimination for books is a valid thing then it’s feasible that genre discrimination against blogs could become a thing too as you do get a variety of blogs that focus solely on specific genres. Surprisingly, those genres are the ones that the blogger enjoys reading, what a shocker!

To those who don’t follow my blog you are obviously discriminating against me because I, on occasion use sarcasm, have a tendency towards being a foul mouth and lack the eloquence of lots of other bloggers! – see, I told you, it gets stupid!

Honestly, if you keep adding the word ‘discrimination‘ to something at some point it gets crazy and then when does it stop?!?

My point is, you can’t pull the discrimination label on someone simply because they decline not to read your book, it’s wrong and quite frankly, it’s also sad.

To me, the actual term ‘genre discrimination‘ has been coined for one reason and one reason only, validity! You add the ‘discrimination’ label to something and it immediately makes it valid, relevant and an important as a topic.

Discrimination is one of those buzz words, it’s like diversity, it’s a go-to word to get a response and garner support. If we are going to be accused of genre discrimination for declining your book does that then mean that the next step will be discrimination against diversity? That, you will tell us your book is ‘diverse‘ and even if it’s in a genre that we don’t read you’ll then pull us up on not wanting to read it because it’s diverse and we hate diverse books irrelevant of the fact it’s an actual genre we don’t read?!? Oh shit! I’ve probably just given some self-important authors an idea with that!πŸ˜‚

Discrimination is a big deal, don’t get me wrong, it is and I’m not making fun. It and it shouldn’t happen in today’s modern world but it unfortunately still does and honestly, with the state of affairs, sad as it is, I can’t see it changing anytime soon.

But genre discrimination, oh hell no! It’s a minor thing, a nothing issue, a phrase coined by some authors because their books were declined for review by bloggers and/or because the blogger didn’t want them to appear on their blog either.

Surely it’s our choice what we do or do not read. My blog is mainly fantasy but I do occasionally read books in other genres. Likewise, lots of you all focus on specific genres too, funnily enough, as I mentioned earlier those are the genres that you as a reader enjoy reading!

I’ve tried to come up with a polite way to end this post but alas, I can’t and really, let’s face it, you all expect some foul language from me in my posts and I wouldn’t want to disappoint anyone!

So, I read and will continue to read the genres that I know I enjoy. If I do choose to read a book outside of my favoured genres, then it’s because something about it has interested me and piqued my attention but mainly, I’ll stick with what I like and I’ll use that old saying to back up my words ‘if it ain’t broke, don’t fix it‘.

In closing, we should be able to read whatever we want, like and enjoy without any fear of reprisal.

As far as I’m concerned so-called ‘genre discrimination‘ doesn’t exist and it can, with all the sincerity that I can muster, go and fuck itself!

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So, my questions to you are, do we discriminate against the genres that we choose not to read?!? Do we discriminate against authors if we don’t have them on our blog due to them writing books in the genres that we don’t read? And, finally and perhaps most importantly, is genre discrimination actually real?!?

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71 thoughts on “Is there any such thing as genre discrimination?

  1. What about blogger discrimination when publishers refuse to send you certain books because they don’t think you are good enough to have it? HUH?! Reminds me of that angry message I posted on twitter. Haha I’m so glad you did this Drew. Damn whiny people coining terms to seem legit. Pch

    Liked by 3 people

    1. Hhhmm, I’d thought of including about publishers but decided I’d probably get hassle from it! Though I agree, especially about the ‘good enough’ bit. I don’t have any issues with anyone getting ARC’s but when you’re declined by a publisher due to low reach and stats and then you see other bloggers with the book who have far less followers and worse stats it makes you think that it’s because they don’t think you’re good enough, don’t like how you review, etc.

      Yeah, I remember those tweets, they were partly responsible for the post as it showed I wasn’t the only one to get pulled up on it and then I saw a few other things too. Alas, I had an issue with an author, so I wrote that Authorgate post and this one had to wait to be finished.

      Whiny people is correct! And, politely put!πŸ˜€

      Liked by 2 people

      1. Well I do try to be polite. I’ve recently had experience with a publisher sending me books I insisted I’m not interested and then completely ignoring me when I asked for an author that I do adore reading. But it happens so now I don’t respond because even if I say no they send me the books I don’t want πŸ˜‚

        Liked by 2 people

  2. I don’t think genre discrimination exists, I actually think that term is horrible. I would instead consider it “genre preference.” We all have genres that we prefer to read over others, it doesn’t mean we are discriminatory against other genres. Like you said, we read what we know we will like and we don’t read what we know won’t like. As always, a great post!

    Liked by 1 person

      1. I don’t understand why it’s such a difficult concept for some people to grasp. Like, I don’t read straight romance or erotica, I have no desire to read those genres.

        Liked by 1 person

      2. I just think that it’s down to words like ‘discrimination’ elicit a response. You state a blogger didn’t want to read your book, who cares. But, you state that they have discriminated against you and immediately people will want to know why due to that one word making something out of nothing.

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  3. The word ‘discrimination’ is just thrown about whenever these days. It’s absolutely not discrimination when choosing not to read a genre that you won’t enjoy, and it’s also not discrimination not following an author because they write a specific genre. I’m always open to trying new books but, in life there’s things/topics that just do not interest us, i’m not going to struggle through a book when there are so many others out there which are my style. Life’s too short, and we read and blog for enjoyment at the end of the day. Those who try and use the discrimination card against me for that aren’t worth my time. Great post by the way Drew.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Very true, reading should be fun. I just don’t see it as ‘discriminating’ though, it’s just us, as readers reading what we like, enjoy and prefer. Just because we choose not to read genres that we know we don’t like it doesn’t mean we are discriminating against them, just that they aren’t for us.

      Liked by 1 person

  4. I predominantly cater for horror, fantasy and sci-fi (with a smattering of historical fiction). So I guess you coukd say I actively discriminate against a good 90% of genres and hundreds of sub-genres (paranormal romance, erotica, dino-erotica and so on and so forth).

    If any of those amazingly awesome bloggers that charge for their amazingly awesome skills reply, let me know. I want to learn from our betters just as much as you do. I’d then pass my knowledge on (without charging) … because I’m not a dick.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Hey, don’t knock Dino or monster erotica until you’ve tried it! I read a monster erotica book the other week just for a laugh as it was free on the Kindle!πŸ˜‚ I actually thought about recommending it to your mother as she likes books with happy endings and there’s plenty of happy endings for the creatures in it, there’s even a birth!πŸ˜‚

      I just find the whole term of ‘discrimination’ too much though. We aren’t discriminating by choosing not to read certain genres, just reading what we like, prefer and enjoy.

      If any of those awesome bloggers who charge reply I’ll write a blog post and share it with everyone! Perhaps I could get one to guest post?! Reasons why I charge for reviews!πŸ˜‚

      Liked by 1 person

      1. Absolutely! It will get so much traffic on your blog. That one I showed you might be interested. Although I think he charges for guest posts πŸ˜‰

        I’m tempted, when I’m caught up on my reading (as if) to start reading wierd crap like that as little one offs

        Liked by 1 person

      2. Those niche books are always overpriced.

        We should write some and give it away for free on our blogs as a joint venture!

        I most certainly won’t be caught up. Got Artemis to finish and recently been sent a victorian zombie novel. I also bought 6 Assassin Creed novels!

        Liked by 1 person

  5. This is really getting ridiculous.. People have been reading whatever the f they want for ages and it wasn’t a thing. But in our time everything you do makes someone else feel offended in some way. This term shouldn’t even exist haha πŸ˜€

    Liked by 1 person

  6. I love how you never hold back with these posts πŸ˜›
    If an author is getting pissy because you won’t read their book because it’s not of your preferred genre (a preference that is usually outlined in our review policies) then no, it’s most definitely NOT discrimination. It’s simply you being an individual and having individual likes, dislikes and preferences.
    I find this an interesting topic. Like I said in my comment on FB, I know some romance authors face discrimination. While researching for one of my earlier podcast episodes, I read an article in which romance authors talked about people asking them questions like “But when are you gonna write a real book?” and about the misconception that they’re all middle aged women who are sad and lonely. I think that’s discrimination, but what you’re describing most definitely isn’t. What you describe is pissy authors who are too lazy to find a reviewer who actually reads their genre and wants to blame their shortcomings on everyone else πŸ˜›

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Ha, I thought that I held back in this post! Not much sarcasm, not much swearing.πŸ˜‚

      Yeah, you said in your FB comment and I mentioned fantasy too as it gets discriminated against and maligned also. This post was more about preference though and reading what you want and authors using a word like discrimination to try and justify themselves and make them look good and the blogger bad for not wanting them on their blog.

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  7. I’m sure an author would have something to say if I took on a request for a genre I don’t like, consequently didn’t enjoy the book and gave it a bad review!

    I’d rather politely decline and save agro on both sides because that partnership isn’t going to work!

    Liked by 1 person

  8. I mean throwing the word discrimination out there is a cop out to me as well as a way to get attention. Its preference through and through. I read what I want, when I want, cause I want to. I mean what about all the people in the world who don’t read romance cause they automatically think they’re trashy, old lady novels etc, etc? Don’t knock it til you try it I always say and it applies to all authors of any genre because they don’t all write the same. If they did, the world would be boring. Read what you like cause we all deserve a happy escape.

    Liked by 1 person

  9. Ugh, completely agree. Their reactions are the exact reason why sometimes a blogger will avoid reviewing their book – it’s way too much trouble, especially if it’s a less than positive review!
    And yes, we might reject them EVEN if we’re into the genre. We have that right, in case someone hasn’t warned them. Some people just feel so entitled, it’s insane.
    Anyway, great post, Drew! You tell them!

    Liked by 1 person

  10. Yes – I also far prefer the term ‘genre preference’. And as far as I can see, it is entirely justified. I don’t read much straight romance because I don’t enjoy reading it – so why would I ever request a review copy in that genre? I review books I think I’m going to enjoy. Why would I agree to review a book I’d probably DNF? And no – it’s not because I look down on romance writing – I happen to think to write good romances takes a huge amount of skill and I quite enjoy a romantic plot thread within my sci fi/fantasy adventure. But being a book blogger doesn’t mean I give up the right to read what I want.

    Liked by 1 person

  11. Reading what you like? What kind of novel idea is this? πŸ˜‰ πŸ˜‚ This is making me wonder now how do these people cope with you just rejecting a book that very obviously is the bloggers cup of tea? I mean, surely it’s just more mature to think that bloggers are just busy and maybe not in the mood/not into that genre of book. Anyway, I digress. Somehow I don’t think personal preference fits the definition of discrimination (I know, call me old fashioned πŸ˜‰ ) Love that Tyrion quote at the end btw!

    Liked by 1 person

    1. I know, reading what you like, it’s a ground breaking revelation of biblical proportion!πŸ˜‚ Need to spread the word!πŸ˜‚

      Oh, I don’t know, definitions change so much nowadays, some might say that you were discriminating against definitions!πŸ˜‚

      Ha, had to get Tyrion in, it seemed like the perfect quote to end with.

      Liked by 1 person

  12. I discriminate heavely on romance novels… its my right too tho… And if some author wants to call me out on it, they are more than welcome to look me up and come tell it to my face. Great post Drew

    Liked by 1 person

  13. I don’t think that by choosing not to read/review certain books that it’s discrimination. I NEVER read romance novels, simply because it’s just not what I’m looking for when I want to read for entertainment. Does that mean that I discriminate against that particular genre or anyone who reads them? Hell no. There are books out there for everyone and everyone should just read what they enjoy. Sadly, life is too short to actually read ALL the books out there, so we have to pick and choose what we want to read.

    Anyone who’s accusing you of “genre discriminating” is just being a twat. Ignore it. Keep doing your thing.

    Liked by 1 person

  14. It’s an interesting subject. Made me think.
    If reviewers were objectively programmed robots, and they were mysteriously shitcanning certain genres, then it would be unfair discrimination. But when they’re human beings with subjective tastes and preferences, it’s not unfair at all; it’s simply people reviewing what they can stand to read. Like if you tried to make me watch horror films and review them, then I’d guess most of reviews would be biased towards the negative, cos I cant stand those films. Therefore I’m entirely the wrong person to be reviewing them, and there’s no point trying to make me. It works better if reviewers follow their natural inclinations and maybe as a courtesy let people know what to submit and what not to. Which AFAICS most reviewers do already anyway.
    I think what’s at fault here, if anything, is people’s expectations of fairness where it’s not relevant.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Very true!

      Yeah, it works better if bloggers let people know what they read but I don’t know about it being a courtesy. Lots do and lots don’t, some don’t even have a review policy. I guess it’s upto the blogger. I think though that if it’s a courtesy for bloggers to let people know what they like and will review then it’s also on the flipside a courtesy for authors to then respect that. Which they often don’t anyway.

      Liked by 1 person

  15. I agree. I wasn’t into book covers until I became a blogger. I always looked at the plot (or back cover) to the book to know if I want it. I do venture into other genres now. But I read books to what I feel like at the time. I used to not read, or watch anything of war. And I loved The Book Thief, and Echo. But that doesn’t mean that I will only read war books now.

    Liked by 1 person

  16. The thought of genre discrimination is already so stupid I’m not even going to answer this!

    As always have to take my hat off to you for going through the trouble of spelling it all out- I don’t know how can be arsed!?! πŸ˜€ I simply can’t … before any fights start with me, I’ve already given in because ain’t nobody got time for that πŸ˜€ hahaha…

    Liked by 1 person

  17. I have to admit that I have not encountered this with authors yet (luckily). But it certainly is not the same as discrimination.. it is preference. A huge difference. Book bloggers and the community can be aggressive in this area though. I have certainly been poked at for my reading preferences by other readers and it is never fun. Great post!

    Liked by 1 person

      1. So odd isn’t it. I have been fortunate and when I follow up letting them know that I do not enjoy the genre and would not be an ideal audience, they seem to appreciate it. I did have one author lie about the genre after I asked multiple time because I just knew it was romance. Needless to say, I dnf’d and then discovered the same happened with a few other bloggers. Sad really.

        Liked by 1 person

      2. It is, alas, there’s always some bad ones, both bloggers and authors fall into that category.πŸ˜‚ Just be nice with authors if they didn’t lie about things, especially genre of their book as obviously it’s not going to end well trying to get people to read genres they don’t enjoy, sigh.πŸ˜‚

        Liked by 1 person

      3. Meh, there will always be a few. We pick and choose our battles and I have more important ones to fight right now πŸ˜‰ I refuse to allow my respite (reading and blogging) become a point of frustration any more. I just deleted all correspondence and shelved. I figure if they ever ask why, then I will be politely honest πŸ˜‰

        Liked by 1 person

      4. Ah we all do what works for us on a personal level. You are just more vocal than I πŸ™‚ I have zero tolerance for idiots but all of my ranting goes on behind the screen and between a few personal friends. I am just not as public haha. But things still get to me πŸ˜‰

        Liked by 1 person

  18. I don’t know a single person who reads literally every.single.genre. It seems crazy to me that an author (who very likely also does not read certain genres) would dare to complain that other people don’t read certain genres. If someone can demonstrate they read every genre (and read in it widely, not like one mystery and one erotica book per year), then they might have room to talk.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. I totally agree, for me it’s genre preference, not discrimination just because I want to read books and genres I know that I like. But alas, authors have their own rules about things and it just seems that the authors pulled it out due to their book being declined for review.

      It’s things like that though that make bloggers not want to work with authors, the few are ruining it for the many. I think I’ve a high tolerance for idiots, I rant about them but it doesn’t stress me but damn, I’m getting tired of authors and their nonsense. One wants me to do a cover reveal and the book and cover were out in July!πŸ˜‚

      Like

      1. Yep!πŸ˜‚ Out for six months too and it’s the original. This is one of my issues with authors, you try and help them out and you get nonsense in return. The guy sent nothing, only the cover and when I looked for more information about the book for the post I of course saw the release date!πŸ˜ πŸ˜‚

        Liked by 1 person

      2. Yeah, I think it would be good if he at least included some original text about how he chose the style of the artwork or something. I wouldn’t post just a cover image on my blog and call it a day.

        Liked by 1 person

  19. I completely agree with you on this “genre discrimination” ordeal. Reading should be fun, so why should I read a book I am not interested just to please some random author. And anyhow reading a book that is uninteresting will make the review more biased towards the negative. Why would an an author even want to do that to themselves?

    Liked by 1 person

    1. I have no idea! Authors are a strange bunch at times when dealing with bloggers!πŸ˜‚

      That’s very true, if the book isn’t interesting then it’s likely to be a negative review but they don’t seem to see that. I think at times they simply see blogger = review and it’s not the case. They write what genre they want and enjoy ergo, obviously we read what genres we want and enjoy.

      Like

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