Roger L. Simon

Anonymous Grub Street

I think there is an unwritten story in the present blog/MSM controversy regarding Eason Jordan. Journalists are jealous of bloggers. Some of them very jealous. And I am not saying this just because if you type “Jeff Jarvis” into Google you get 397,000 links and if you type “Steve Lovelady” (the Dorothy Parker wannabe who recently called us “salivating morons”) you get 804. Many of the more prominent bloggers are people who could have been journalists but chose not to, going into professions that took more professional training and/or were more remunerative. Now they can afford to blog at their leisure and, not surprisingly, they’re pretty good writers and journalists. And, also not surprisingly, many journalists are pissed off.

I have my own story in this regard. I thought about being a journalist, even about attending Columbia “J” School, but decided to pursue playwriting, although I knew it was far more difficult (hey, get serious!). After I graduated from Yale Drama without really learning how to write plays (truly difficult indeed – and can’t really be taught anyway), I wound up writing novels and screenplays for a living (both difficult enough). When I was still starting out, I wrote a couple of journalistic pieces for West Magazine, a defunct organ of the LAT. Wow, this is easy, I thought (compared to what I was trying to do), but then I saw the check. It was miniscule next to what I was getting, admittedly intermittently, from Hollywood. Why even bother?

Please understand- I am not disdaining non-fiction writing. It is a great craft and presents its own problems. But they are on a different level. There is a reason David E. Kelley makes a gazillion dollars and you never heard of Steve Lovelady until he attacked blogs.

UPDATE: Gerard also sees the handwriting on the wall.

MEANWHILE: Meanwhile, Jessica’s Well is making fun of poor Mr. Lovelady. [Lovelady? Are we in a Sheridan play?-ed. No, Congreve.]