I should know better than to read certain discussions on certain boards. I really should. In my defense, I have met many wonderful readers and authors from these same boards, so the benefits are far greater than the momentary moments of Hulk rage I feel when reading certain opinions.
Yes, I chant the mantra, "Everyone is entitled to their own opinion," and I repeat as necessary.
The thing is, it's not so much that we disagree. I disagree with my goodreads friends from time to time, but not one of us takes it personally. Sometimes it's fun to debate why we liked/didn't like certain things. It's part of being in a community of readers, and some books strike a chord within us, giving rise to passionate arguments. I respect that.
What drives me up a freaking wall are the folks who have a vendetta against anything involving the paranormal and try to make Urban Fantasy readers feel inferior for enjoying their favorite books (same applies to Romance or YA readers). I've already gone ranty on this once (see http://www.goodreads.com/story/show/266622-just-my-opinion).
Romance, Fantasy and YA have been taking hits lately right and left - it's too dark, it's a bad influence, blah blah blah. The funniest part is that the majority of the haters haven't even read the books they are railing against. It boggles the mind and leads to moments of the aforementioned Hulk rage.
Today's rant is about folks who hate UF because some of them have romantic elements (again, these are the people who want UF wiped off the map, not those who just choose not to read it).
First of all, just because there is sex or a relationship in a book doesn't mean that the book is a Romance. I'm pretty sure there is sex in Game of Thrones (I know, I still need to read it - it's on the shelf right now), but no one is clamoring to stick those next to the Johanna Lindseys.
Note: I'm not bashing Romance - I enjoy reading them. Romance is a distinctive genre, be it historical, contemporary or paranormal. When I absolutely must have a HEA, I run to the Romance section. It's also not that hard to distinguish it from other genres. It really isn't. There are some books that blur the lines between UF and PNR (Jeaniene Frost's Night Huntress series for instance), but overall it's really not that confusing.
Second, I get that some people don't want to read any sex scenes (and usually you can skip them if you are so inclined), but when you back up your argument that romance (usually they use "smut" or "pr0n" but you get the idea) has no place in Fantasy, or literature for that matter, with a statement regarding your love for "classics" such as Shakespeare's Midsummer Nights Dream, or your "extensive" study of Greek mythology, it makes me laugh. Really. Do you have any idea how many dirty jokes are in Shakespeare's plays? They might be highbrow now, but they were the opiate of the people in their own time (American Pie or The Hangover have nothing on old Willy). And Greek mythology? If anyone knew how to get their freak on, it was the Greek gods and heroes. If you were lucky, Zeus only visited you as a golden ray of sunshine. And the origin of the minotaur - holy crap!
So read what you like to read, I do, but trying to make me feel like an idiot for loving my Urban Fantasy does not make me want to listen to you. It also means I won't touch your book with a ten foot pole.
Updated to add: And that in the end is what bothered me the most. All of the pot-stirring, just to get some self-promotion. If the only way you know to promote your book is to denigrate someone elses, then IN MY OPINION, you should find something else to do.
And when you are making an argument, just throwing out names of revered literary works does not give you an automatic pass - if it takes someone less than a second to skewer your argument, you should find another way to make your point.