Does the Great Fly seem like such an absurd character when contrasted with the likes of Boko Haram?
One day a person who refuses to read my novel told me that he wanted to read books about real life not absurd tales of shit eating varmints who kill and maim each other and steal each other’s fly females at random. He also mentioned that he was put-off by the strange religions of the flies in FLYLAND. He disliked the inherent philosophy doing evil, rather than good that was the goal in the FLYLAND’s political institutions. Also, the concept that doing evil to get to Flo (heaven) was ridiculous and he wanted to read about real things that mattered. Finally, he told me that a kid shouldn’t be reading FLYLAND. The book was too bizarre. Hmmm.
“I think the opposite,” I replied.
FLYLAND could be being discussed in every Literature-1A, or even bonehead English college classroom in America and it would be a profound add to the likes of Madame Bovary or the Great Gatsby. Our world is in chaos and it might help students to read a novel that recognizes such and attempts to satirize the chaos we live in today. I would go further and suggest FLYLAND should be made available to every classroom at an over tenth grade reading level. Let them thumb the novel and read the funny parts and the poems. There is plenty to learn and discuss in a satire. Why not?
Much of our modern world is a throw back to the middle ages, impacted by powerful leaders who are at heart sexual deviants and cowards. They pose behind their religions and their politically gained positions to manufacture war, perpetrate perverse sexual assaults, kidnappings and forced marriages on the helpless, and mass murder on innocents of all ages and races. In many countries men are fighting to the death to not let women read or go to school. Insidious spirits plant bombs outside of schools and run over complete strangers with their cars! Students are victimized in the hundreds and the world can’t do a thing about it. Men who are very much like The Great Fly in thought and deed run more than half of the seriously demented societies on our planet. Question for the class–Is The Great Fly any more bizarre than Kim Jung Ill?
Yet, my non-reader critic is put off by FLYLAND, a dark comedy about the world of flies that looks strangely like a reflection of our own savage world and societies. What darkness is it behind comments that attempt to make an author feel seedy for writing about the seediness of the world? Surely FLYLAND has as much intrinsic value as Lonesome Dove or a Harry Potter novel, less the readership, of course–I don’t expect readers to swarm to FLYLAND, but they should be aware of it, especially if they claim to have their pulvilli on the pulse of the current literary scene.
But for my non-reader to remark that they want to read about reality and not about the flies in FLYLAND misses the point of an author writing at all. The point of authorship is being compelled to write and reveal what you see–not what sells or is preferred by the majority of readers and literary agents trolling the web for the next iteration of J.K. Rowland. A non-reader should not become a critic based on assumptions about a plot synopsis.
Hopefully, someday the humble author of FLYLAND will receive a modicum of acknowledgement for the hard work done. At this point we are just glad that the clamor of disapproval is only a small voice here and there and not a riot! Poor FLYLAND, still searching and yet to find a readership.