Blogs by Jack Gunthridge
4/10/2009 1:34:23 AM
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A response to reviews
The reviews of my book are coming in. While they have generally been positive, I have had a few people comment on the content of my book. I believe that "Life" is properly labeled as a young adult novel. I admit that there is a sexual content to the book, but I do not think it surpasses anything that goes beyond what is in a PG-13 movie. I have always maintained this.
To help clear up this confusion, I have taken several steps. I am submitting my book to the ALA (American Library Association). They are the group that is in charge of officially rating books that children and young adults may read. I am doing this partly because retailers like Amazon and Barnes and Noble are placing my book more in the juvenile's section. Amazon lists the hardcover as having a reading level of ages 9 to 12. I have never agreed with this. I have actually contacted Amazon and have tried to get this corrected. They are currently looking at the book and will make a decision later. I'm not sure how they are doing this, or even if this will change the reading level.
I am also in the process of changing the cover of the hardcover book and creating a new paperback version. This is partly being done to have a more mature cover that will not appeal to younger children. This is also being done because I have felt that the current covers are a little too cutesy. My book is a love story, but it also deals with more complex themes and ideas. I wanted a cover that depicted this.
If you read the review of my book here on Authorsden, you will see that I am being compared to Salinger. I finished reading "The Catcher in the Rye" this weekend. As I was getting towards the end, I realized a moral dilemma that I was facing with my own book. I have known that my book dealt with adult themes. I have never written for children. Since my book deals with growing up and being in love, I wrote it from the perspective that anybody reading it would be old enough to understand what was being presented. They would understand what it is like to grow up and to not really know what you wanted out of life, but you were also extremely happy being a teenager in love. That love seemed like the most important thing in your life. It was also to depict a time in your life when you know that you are doing things that reflect that you are growing up.
As I was reading "The Catcher in the Rye", I realized that I may be doing and have done things that an adult would do. I can't help that I have grown up. At the same time, I feel that I have a responsibility to be the catcher in the rye and to keep children from growing up too fast.
I think I have been responsible in doing this. I have tried to get the word out as much as I can with the limited funds that I have. I have a better idea of where to go next once I get an actual rating from the ALA. I don't think my book is offensive. It was never written to be. I'm not sure where some of the reviews are coming from. All I can do is try to be responsible as the author while still maintaining that my book has artistic merit and deserves to be read. I do not believe in censorship. This book is going to stay published. I'm not going to edit anything out of it. People should be responsible and not read something if it offends them. They should not censor things for the rest of us. That is part of living in a free society. I will not live in a society where a few decide what is fit for the rest of us. I am standing behind my book.
And that is all that I am going to say on this subject.
More Blogs by Jack Gunthridge
Life - Friday, December 04, 2009
New Cover - Friday, April 10, 2009
The Gunthridge Show on IMDB - Sunday, January 11, 2009
Old things in the new year - Sunday, January 04, 2009
Win a copy - Monday, December 29, 2008
Life and Love - Tuesday, December 23, 2008
Life - Thursday, December 11, 2008
Give the gift of Life - Friday, November 28, 2008
Reflections of my life - Thursday, November 27, 2008
Random ideas - Friday, September 19, 2008
Love - Saturday, September 13, 2008
Life imitates art - Friday, September 12, 2008
MPAA - Tuesday, September 09, 2008