My entire last week was spent reading the same book. A 900+ behemoth and the sixth book in a series, The Ink Black Heart by Robert Galbraith aka J. K. Rowling. I love this series, but I’ll admit I too have mixed feelings about reading a book written by an author who has made transphobic remarks. I don’t agree with her remarks at all and knowing her feelings, it’s hard not to read one of her books without keeping an eye out towards any hidden agendas or feelings.
J. K. Rowling known for the uber popular Harry Potter novels in my eyes ruined her rep as a beloved novelist a couple of years ago and despite my anger towards her beliefs did not wait to pick up the most recent novel in the Cormoran Strike series. Do I feel bad about supporting this author by reading her novels? Yeah. How do I rationalize it to myself? I really don’t do much rationalizing although I didn’t purchase the book but borrowed a copy through the library, so I can feel kind of good about that. Why do I keep reading her books? I feel like I’ve developed a relationship with these characters and it’s hard to not read their story to its conclusion. I’m invested. Just like I”m invested in Harry Potter and the Fantastic Beasts movie franchise. But, I do feel like I should be shouting out my pro-trans and LGBTQ+ feelings just to disassociate myself from someone who uses her power for ill.
Here’s a question, are you better at separating yourself from authors, actors, politician’s, whomever! Do you sit quietly and stew? Join protest marches? Don’t buy their books and go to movies? How evil does someone have to get before it causes a reaction from you? I’ll admit, during a political season I will get off my couch and vote to try to keep someone I disagree with intensely from holding office but an author who lives a continent away? I am disenchanted, yes. I still picked up the book and read it- although I didn’t buy it. I will also be writing a review which is a way of supporting sales for that book, or not depending on what I thought of it. I wouldn’t vote her into our government, that’s for sure.
I use J. K. Rowling as an example because I’ve just finished this book, but there are many popular figures that this thought could be applied to. I obviously have mixed feelings and so I thought I’d just open this thought up for discussion, if any of you should like to make a comment and let me know your thoughts.