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Bret Eaton Ellis says Alice Munro, 2013 Nobel Prize in Literature, is overrated.

“Alice Munro is so completely overrated,” tweeted Bret Eaton Ellis, 49. “Alice Munro was always an overrated writer and now that she’s won the Nobel she always will be. The Nobel is a joke and has been for ages.”

So far, the only person in agreement with Ellis’s snarky assessment has been the writer Christian Lorentzen, who wrote a highly critical review of Munro’s most recent short-story collection, Dear Life, for the London Review of Books.

A sample passage from Lorentzen’s withering review: “Over a career now in its sixth decade, she’s rehearsed the same themes again and again, but that’s because she’s a master of variation. She has preternatural powers of sympathy and empathy, but she’s never sentimental.”

On Friday, Lorentzen responded via Twitter to Ellis’s dismissal of Munro with the comment, “Amen,” and claimed that Munro’s Nobel win put him on the right side of a wager. “The only thing I won was a bet,” tweeted Lorentzen.

On the flipside, Ellis has publicly stated his belief that the blind early-round auditions of The Voice are “probably the most emotionally stirring and suspenseful episodes on television right now.”

To recap: Bret Easton Ellis believes Munro is unworthy of acclaim, but really admires a reality TV singing competition starring Christina Aguilera?

by Anonymousreply 6710/13/2013

Will the Ellis troll take a hike already?

by Anonymousreply 110/11/2013

Wonder who voted yes?

by Anonymousreply 210/11/2013

Nice to see him taking a break from attacking out actors!

by Anonymousreply 310/11/2013

Pot, kettle.

by Anonymousreply 410/11/2013

So, throw him a pint of vodka and B.E.E. becomes George O'Dowd.


by Anonymousreply 510/11/2013

He just tweets controversial things to try to stay relevant. If not no one would be talking about him or his work.

by Anonymousreply 610/11/2013

BEE is just jealous. That Nobel money could buy him a lot of cocaine.

by Anonymousreply 710/11/2013

She is nowhere near overrated, but I'm surprised the Nobel was awarded to someone who only writes short stories. Not that short stories are any less difficult to pen. A perfect short story can be fantastically difficult to write. But it's almost the equivalent of seeing a culinary award given to a pastry chef instead of a "savory" chef.

by Anonymousreply 810/11/2013

So who voted yes, and why?

by Anonymousreply 910/11/2013

R8, writing an effective short story takes as much skill as writing a novel. In some ways, even more difficult because there is less room for error.

by Anonymousreply 1010/11/2013

Oh R10, I am not doubting the difficulty of a short story v. a novel, as I agree. Less room for error; less words and faster pace to capture the reader's attention. I made the comparison to pastry because pastry, too, is more difficult than "food food" but doesn't usually get the credit that most chefs do.

by Anonymousreply 1110/11/2013

What about that quote from the critic is "withering"?

by Anonymousreply 1210/11/2013

Whether BEE is over-rated or not has no bearing on the quality of Alice Munro's writing.

He's the Teddy Roosevelt of writers - popular among younger men because he writes on topics that glamorize things that adolescent young men like.

She's not that great either.

by Anonymousreply 1310/11/2013

R13 what is your main beef with Alice Munro writing?

by Anonymousreply 1410/11/2013

Listen to Philip Roth at R13. Yes, do tell us what's 'not so great' about Alice Munro.

by Anonymousreply 1510/11/2013

Apparently Munro has several fans here, so - what is it that makes her short stories Nobel-worthy?

by Anonymousreply 1610/11/2013

It doesn't matter how valid Ellis's opinion may or may not be, really (though I suspect he is at least as jealous as he is honest).

It's just generally kind of douchebaggish to deride a Nobel winner who is well his elder on her day of acclaim, right?

by Anonymousreply 1710/11/2013

R16, perhaps this link will help a little. Click on the red dots above the phrases.

10 Reasons Why Alice Munro is a genius:

by Anonymousreply 1810/11/2013

"Nice to see him taking a break from attacking out actors!"

Female authors are the new out actors!

by Anonymousreply 1910/11/2013

Thank you, R18, but I asked that question, deliberately, so that her fans here on the Datalounge would give me their personal reasons.

Do you not feel confident enough in your own literary taste to offer an opinion?

by Anonymousreply 2010/11/2013

The only thing Bret Easton Ellis could ever hope to win is a door prize.

by Anonymousreply 2110/11/2013

90 people voted so far but how many of them have actually read Munro's work? Just saying.

by Anonymousreply 2210/11/2013

God, has he got her number right. Nothing against her, but her inexplicable fame just shows how ridiculous the twattery contingent is.

Sure, there have been a nice handful of decent female writers over the centuries. Great writers, even. But, Christ, it seems that the need to pretend that women somehow are equal in inherent talent, intelligence, communication skills, aesthetic judgment and artistic drive to men is just ridiculous. Women crap out the same thing over and over and over - the female pattern in writing - and then we're supposed to cheer just because they are masters of playing the academic system and suckering publishers. And minority status just makes it worse.

Munro has added nothing to her offerings for 40 years. One note. But of COURSE she gets a Nobel for sheer repetition.

What crap.

by Anonymousreply 2310/11/2013

"God, has he got her number right"

I think B.E.E is posting here so he can agree with himself. You're just a dumb, misogynistic Republican. Go away.

Seriously, this is like Megan Fox criticizing Meryl Streep for not being a good actress.

by Anonymousreply 2410/11/2013

r23, your misogyny is so rank and stupid that I can only assume your post is a parody.

by Anonymousreply 2510/11/2013

For those of you asking us to prove that we've read her short stories and to justify her Nobel win - Fuck you. If you won't accept the Nobel committee, then we'd be idiots to bother explaining it to you.

by Anonymousreply 2610/11/2013

Leave Alice Munro alone!

by Anonymousreply 2710/11/2013

And yet, R25, you can't seriously name even one female writer worthy of a Nobel.

Shove your sexism back up your cunt, or its proxy, dear. The advent of the "We're talented too" has ruined not only every English department in the western world, but lowered artistic standards, critical standards, and simple aesthetic understanding.

I would have given Eudora Welty a Nobel. I'm not against women. But Munro is one end of the problem of serious fiction today, with the execrable T. Morrison and her sisters of the victim on the other. At LEAST Oates will never get one, but that's a small consolation for the amount of paper she has wasted over the decades.

And how is it, R24, that you managed to pull an American political connection to an opinion about a Canadian winning an international prize? Are you yet another worthless tit as well? The assumption that I am American just shows how mindless the herd of the twat is.

by Anonymousreply 2810/11/2013

Thank God Munro's got one of these.

by Anonymousreply 2910/11/2013

Ellis' books suck. "American Psycho" - the film - is great only because the direction, acting, and script were right. The novel itself is gratuitous and dull.

by Anonymousreply 3010/11/2013

I didn't think the movie was so hot either.

by Anonymousreply 3110/11/2013

r28 must be that Canadian professor who refuses to teach literature written by women because of his severe inadequacy issues.

by Anonymousreply 3210/11/2013

R32, believe it or not most men actually and quietly find fault with much of what women have become and pretend to be without inadequacy entering the picture. It is a rare man who, whatever his sexual interests, cannot see through the shallow, vain, lazy and rather stupid things that the majority of women unfortunately have become.

So nice try. But, again, reflexive twattery without an attempt to present a worthy female writer. But then all you shits defending Munro have not ever bothered to read even one of her short stories, have you? Of course not. And I have. So stuff it back up your voids.

by Anonymousreply 3310/11/2013

Speaking of crapping out the same thing over and over again, has Ellis ever written anything other than the same shitty "sexy, amoral alpha male is super mean and straight and yet somehow kinda gay" bilge? And what about Philip "my new novel is about the angry boner I still have for the Shikshas" Roth?

by Anonymousreply 3410/11/2013

BEE writes crap and it was crappy faddy crap that is not even "in" anymore.

by Anonymousreply 3510/11/2013

Oh Christ, the Datalounge Misogynist Troll is off his meds again.

Darling, you give dicks a bad name.

by Anonymousreply 3610/11/2013

She's really good - which is fine, if "really good" is your favorite quality.

I find her excellence oppressive.

by Anonymousreply 3710/11/2013

I wish B.E.E. was posting here and I wish he was gossiping.

by Anonymousreply 3810/11/2013

R23, a handful of female writers are amongst my favorite (Margaret Atwood, Joyce Carol Oates, Joan Didion, Virginia Woolf, Flannery O'Connor), but I do see an annoying pattern/deficiency in a LOT of chick-lit female writers in that themes constantly seem to revolve around romance, family, children and interpersonal melodramatic relationships (boring).

However, almost an equal amount of (straight) male writers are just as irritating and redundant. How many f'ing books written by straight men have to have the protagonist be the macho hero chasing after the girl? Equally boring.

The best writers, IMO, write neutrally/genderlessly.

by Anonymousreply 3910/11/2013

I've read many of her books. She's wonderful. Is she Nobel prize winning material? I really don't know as I don't read broadly enough to judge, but I'm happy for her nevertheless. She certainly is in a much higher class than Bret Eaton Ellis, so his opinion is irrelevant.

[quote]But, Christ, it seems that the need to pretend that women somehow are equal in inherent talent, intelligence, communication skills, aesthetic judgment and artistic drive to men is just ridiculous.

What a strange little person you are. What is your background? Perhaps certain women in your life have abused you in some way. Your revenge is to hate all women without discrimination. Or maybe you're from a repressed society where people aren't educated and human rights takes a back seat, ie sexism, racism, homophobia, etc. all run rampant. Which is it? Whatever the case, you've got problems.

by Anonymousreply 4010/11/2013

"Chick-lit" is not literature and neither is James Patterson etc so they do not have to be mentioned in threads about literature.

by Anonymousreply 4110/11/2013

In one of her stories, a child vanishes and then is found and the writer considers the knife-edge margin between a tragedy and an ordinary day. I think about that story a lot.

by Anonymousreply 4210/11/2013

[quote]a handful of female writers are amongst my favorite (Margaret Atwood, Joyce Carol Oates, Joan Didion, Virginia Woolf, Flannery O'Connor), but I do see an annoying pattern/deficiency in a LOT of chick-lit female writers in that themes constantly seem to revolve around romance, family, children and interpersonal melodramatic relationships (boring).

I don't know what you mean exactly. You say you like Joyce Carol Oates and Joan Didion but they both most definitely write about relationships, romance, children, but so do male writers, and what's wrong with that anyway. It's all part of the human condition.

I guess you mean you don't get the mountain of crap books that get published every year. It's not a gender thing. Many people just like to read escapist crap as a break from the stress of life. They don't want to read stuff where they have to work. Each to his/her own.

by Anonymousreply 4310/11/2013

Yeah well Ms. Uppity R41, Bret Eaton Ellis is not "literature" either but yet here you are posting in this thread.

by Anonymousreply 4410/11/2013

Books are so decorative!

by Anonymousreply 4510/11/2013

I prefer BEE books over hers. Why? Simply, because he uses a lot of LGBT themes in his writing, Munro- none. That itself should be the main criterion for any gay reader.

by Anonymousreply 4610/12/2013

R46. NO books for you. You don't deserve them.

by Anonymousreply 4710/12/2013

Bret is a very special writer, one who has much more resonance than his more critically celebrated so-called peers, and who will continue to have resonance for decades to come. It may be a fool's game to guess which novels will be read in 50 or 100 years, but I am sure American Psycho will be one of them. Glamorama is a novel I hope gets taken more seriously.

by Anonymousreply 4810/12/2013

R47, take a look at this list. How many books by Ellis? 3. How many by Munro? 0. This list was prepared by well known literary critics and it's not only for novels, there are short stories and novellas included, yet not even one by Munro. So no books for you, asshole.

by Anonymousreply 4910/12/2013

Even notorious misogynists Truman Capote and Camille Paglia, decades apart, agreed there are great women writers. In no other fields have women excelled, but in writing, yes. (Their view, not mine)

So let's get past this bullshit. A good writer isn't great for dealing with gay, African-American, or women's issues.

by Anonymousreply 5010/12/2013

that is a pretty subjective list, R49

by Anonymousreply 5110/12/2013

Thanks for weighing in, Bret at R48.

by Anonymousreply 5210/12/2013

I wouldn't call Alice Munro overrated, but she has a small range of stories, and many of them are very alike. She's Canadian, and everything that comes with that credential. I'm just surprised that she wound up with a Nobel, that's all.

by Anonymousreply 5310/12/2013

I am not anti-Alice Munro, but I have attempted to read some stories of hers and have given up - twice. Does she just write about boring people in a boring way - is that her thing?

by Anonymousreply 5410/12/2013


by Anonymousreply 5510/12/2013


by Anonymousreply 5610/12/2013

He's a fine one to talk.

by Anonymousreply 5710/12/2013

I've never read Alice Munro but want to give her a try. Which book of hers should I read?

by Anonymousreply 5810/12/2013

They didn't give it to Borges or Eileen Chang last century, both of whom were known for their truly excellent short stories.

So I guess Short Story as a genre is Now Finally Kosher, by Nobel standard. I can sleep better tonight.

by Anonymousreply 5910/12/2013

Thank god they didn't give it to Philip Roth, or I'd have to kill myself.

by Anonymousreply 6010/12/2013

R58. It doesn't matter. They're all essentially the same stories.

by Anonymousreply 6110/12/2013

He needs to sit on a tetanus covered iron spiked dildo and fuck himself into eternity

by Anonymousreply 6210/12/2013

Says the writer of The Canyons...and other shite.

by Anonymousreply 6310/12/2013

No writer can, will or should appeal to all readers. That being said, Ellis is a pot stirring ass, as usual.

by Anonymousreply 6410/12/2013

R58. I would recommend that you read "The Progress of Love." It is, as expected, a collection of short stories. Wonderful book.

by Anonymousreply 6510/12/2013

If it weren't for his increasingly insane Twitter farts, NOBODY who remember him, and for an egomaniac like B.E.E. that must burn like a laser. It must gall him that an octogenarian writer has become hip again, while he has stooped to defend a misguided "movie" starring a big cocked porn dweeb and the poster child for "pissed on opportunities".

by Anonymousreply 6610/12/2013

I've never read Munro, as I'm not much a fan of the short story form particularly as it's applied to tales of domestic drama.

But if there's one thing I do know, it's that Bret Easton Ellis is at best a medium talent who would say anything for a little more attention.

If I have one bit of disappointment, it's that this likely means no Nobel for Margaret Atwood, because are they really going to give it to another Canadian woman fiction writer in the next few years? Highly doubtful. And I think Atwood's body of work is just tremendous, and highly deserving of this prize.

by Anonymousreply 6710/13/2013
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