50 Shades of Bullshit

E.L. James, what is that I don’t even.

Mummy porn writer EL James has threatened a housewife with legal action for throwing saucy Fifty Shades of Grey parties.

Tina Winters, 45, wanted to pass on tips and sell lingerie but lawyers told her to stop using the novel as a theme.

This is the best part, though:

EL James’ agent Valerie Hoskins said the legal letter was not personal, adding: “You can’t just hijack something someone else owns.”

This agent is representing an author who made a fortune from writing modified fanfic. She wrote a crappy book series that owes its commercial success to another crappy book series which owes its viability to the popularity of fantasy elements which have been evolving in the public imagination since Bram Stoker wrote Dracula.

This is an author who is standing on the shoulders of a bigger person who in turn stands on the shoulders of multiple giants. Robin McKinley did a better job with sympathetic vampires than Stephenie Meyer, and you don’t need to scratch very deep into the erotic fiction community to find writers who do a better job with kinky sex than E.L. James.

Yet she feels so incredibly threatened by a woman in Coventry selling lingerie.

11 thoughts on “50 Shades of Bullshit

  1. Wow…maybe she feels threatened because she identifies with the woman in Coventry and sees her as a rival. I have never read 50 Shades; it isn’t my thing at all and as a parent I think a good way to teach a teen discernment is by showing that we make choices in what we do and read. What has me all confused is that the most ‘conservative’ women around me are the ones reading this ‘erotica’ which by all reviews seems to be rated more pornography than erotica….

  2. Alyson, I love how straight to the point you are and I agree, for shame E.L. ! Have you forgotten the shirt tail you’ve been riding on? For shame!

  3. I had peripheral knowledge of 50 shades just from its media attention. After the Saturday Night Live spoof of it I thought it was a porn romance. Not my scene but if it was I thank you for saving me the money and time. On a side note, I was reading an article about Amelia Gray in the Texas Observer and she said the forthcoming “May we Shed These Human Bodies” makes Fifty Shades look like Twilight fan fiction.

    • That’s the thing: Fifty Shades *really is* Twilight fanfic. She changed enough to make it legal to sell as original fiction, but it would not exist without Twilight.

  4. I’m not too sure what to make of this whole thing (50 Shades). I commend her for capitalizing on people’s primal desire to indulge in the taboo, and envy her for being able to use people’s own stupidity against them.

    That being said, I’m embarrassed as a writer. It’s garbage.

    • There’s plenty of garbage that’s made tons of money. On the one hand, it’s infuriating that I work my ass off to produce quality fiction and struggle to get any attention at all while shit like 50 Shades is everywhere. On the other, it’s comforting to remember that things like writing quality and literary merit are totally separate issues from commercial success.

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