No need to reply. Between yesterday's notes & reblogged meta, feels like rather than being fun/dramatic/tragic WicDiv is deliberately, totally depressing with a side of something like moralizing. You actually want readers to hate themselves for enjoying your book? (You assume anyone who liked the ending of the last issue did so b/c "the bad guy died"?) I can manage hating myself and being depressed just fine on my own, w/o reading a joyless trudge--no matter how pretty. I'm prolly out then.
No need to respond, of course, but I thought it worth stressing a few general points, if only to get my own thinking aligned.
Pomegranate Salad writes in what’s basically a psychological realist mode. She’s using a certain skill-set and knowledge base to approach the characters and read what she thinks they “mean”. That WicDiv supports it does say something about it as a book, but it’s a mode that you can apply to any media which features characters with any form of psychological realism. Literally, any level of psychological realism.
In that piece, Pomegranate Salad is drilling down on what she reads as a core axis of each character. By my reading, what she’s trying to analyse is a character’s hamartia - the core fatal flaw that leads them to tragedy. You simply don’t have a tragedy if you don’t have that. Anything that is dramatic/tragic to any reasonable degree would have someone do that article about it, especially if it was any good.
My own notes, as I stress in almost every one, is a selection of random thoughts as I skim the issue. It’s only a tiny fraction of what’s in the book, not least because I’m not going to say what the point of a story that’s only inching towards being half-way done is. Especially because the writer’s mood varies. If I’m in a self-hating hole, that kind of comes across.
In other words: I wouldn’t take my notes that seriously, as it’s far from the full story and even if it was my full story, it wouldn’t be the full story, as when the work is in the world, my critical response to it is no more valid than anyone else’s. The end of the arc is a mix of things. That image is simultaneously FUCK YEAH! and “Er…this bodes ill” and several other things. How people respond t that is going to vary individually.
I generally advise people who worry about commentary influencing their own response not to read the Writer Notes. The book is whatever you make of it. If it’s been working for you in the way you describe, I wouldn’t let a couple of other people’s take derail you from your own response.
If someone thinks about WicDIv as a melodramatic soap-opera of hot people making out and occasionally fighting, that’s fine. More than fine - it’s clearly true. If someone’s reading for the formalist playfulness, or what Jamie and Matt bring to the art, that’s fine - and clearly true too. If it’s about the arch one-liners, that’s also fine - and clearly true. And so on and so forth. It’s big serious work, but it’s also a book that thinks a 100ft tall robot woman with attack boobs is a good idea. I’ve always aspired to be Joy Division and the Ramones simultaneously, and much of my work is based around a rejection of a lot of dichotomies in art. WicDiv kind of is designed to be everything.
Of course, it’s also often a dark book, and I can also understand that there’s times when a book’s timbre is just not something you need in your life. I still haven’t finished watching MAD MEN because it was too depressing to deal with. But generally speaking? While we do vary the mode a lot, I suspect WicDiv will run on its mix of elation and despair for the rest of the run. Our primary axis is the rollercoaster not the abyssal dwelling. When we’re on, I think WicDiv takes you to hell and back again several times within an issue. That’s what we’ve always aimed to do, and continue to aim to do. If anyone has liked it so far, in all its forms, I suspect they’ll like it to the end.
In passing, as an open question as I’ve never found a satisfactory answer - where did fandom’s use of Meta originate from? I presume it’s just wanting to avoid the stuffiness of academia with the word “Criticism” and the analysis I’ve found doesn’t really capture the leap from the traditional use of meta to the fandom use. That said I haven’t gone through all the essay links here so I’m probably just being VERY LAZY. IGNORE THE QUESTION. I AM TOO LAZY TO EVEN DELETE IT.