Kirsty Logan: Kinderwhoring

2 Jan

Over at the PANK blog, Kirsty Logan writes beautifully about her younger days in a post that says a great deal, I think, about the importance of the relationship that writers have with their readers.

I haven’t been in Kirsty’s shoes exactly, never had anyone ask me to take down something I’ve posted online, but I’ve met plenty of writers and musicians and what not, and her post got me thinking about the the ways that different people interact with the people who love their work.

Online and in person, many of them are gracious, extravagantly kind, generous with their work and their time. But some of them are not, and reading Kirsty’s account, I fear the effect they have on people, especially younger readers-that-would-be-writers. As Kirsty says, “Perhaps I could have been a different sort of writer if that poet had loved me back.”

Kirsty says that this older writer was right, at least in a legal sense. I say, copyright be damned: she couldn’t have been more wrong.

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2 Responses to “Kirsty Logan: Kinderwhoring”

  1. Roxane Gay January 3, 2011 at 8:47 am #

    I totally agree, Troy. When I read what that writer said to Kirsty, I felt sad. As a writer, I’d be thrilled to see someone excerpting my work on their blog or website. What a compliment. I think sometimes writers get so caught up in “protecting” their work that they forget about the idea of audience.

  2. christopher. January 3, 2011 at 5:51 pm #

    Yeah. I read that myself and felt really sad and almost offended that someone would do that, and especially a poet. If there’s one group of writers who should encourage free promotion by excerpting and posting their poems around online, it’s poets. It’s free word-of-mouth marketing. Sheesh.

    But, even from a non-business perspective, it’s just strange to me that someone would be so protective of their “copyright.” I would understand if it was like, The New Yorker blog posting the poem (though I’d still be pretty freaking stoked they posted it, but wouldn’t mind a little sumptin’ sumptin’ for its use considering they’re a legit and prosperous publication), but the blog of a 16-year old girl? Come on.

    I don’t know. It’s just sad.

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