We found this recent post, Outdoor Writing: Reviewing the Reviewers on To Hatch a Crow. It is a thoughtful piece which draws attention to what so many have ignored for so long. And to what, in our view, has amounted to harassment of authors who are perceived to be ‘the competition’. Here is a paragraph from the article:
99% of reviewers, I would suggest, are honest and conscientious. They tend to be scrupulously fair and objective and never allow personal feelings about an author to cloud their judgement. However, that’s not to say that there are not some bad apples in the barrel. One of our best known climbing writers does a good line in rubbishing authors he sees as rivals by writing one and two star reviews on Amazon under a series of pretty transparent pseudonyms. Rather amusingly, he always gives his own books five star glowing reviews.
Jim Perrin does lead a merry dance through the personal fiefdom (as he seems to regard it) that is the Internet, and we are most grateful that someone else can help us analyse his online activities more deeply than we are able to do. One of our perceptive well-wishers has an interest in the recently described condition M.O.P.D., and has made a brief study of it; and as a follower of our site he has not failed to pick up on our accusations that Jim Perrin has written under pseudonyms. He too has recognized the patterns which he considers point to this likelihood. Very kindly he has sent us this contribution.
‘Let me prefix the following by saying that the lawyers insist on the term ‘I (or we) believe’ being coupled with every assertion regarding Jim Perrin for which hard proof is not provided. In the present matter such proof is not easy to come by — but it certainly exists and could be assembled with (and by some parties of my acquaintance without) the co-operation of certain website operators, internet service providers, and email services; but really, need I bother? Continue reading
Those who follow the erratic career of Jim Perrin may be aware of his apparently leisurely project to write a biography of the Victorian traveller and writer George Borrow, whose most well-known book is Wild Wales. Indeed Perrin has laid claim to the mantle of Borrow, at least as regards his shamelessly exculpatory association, by implication, of his own book West with Borrow’s (as Perrin calls it) ‘fictivized autobiography’, as if this justifies West‘s catalogue of offences to the dead and the living.
But we believe he can lay legitimate claim to many Borrovian characteristics. In his Introduction to the 1906 J M Dent edition of Wild Wales, Theodore Watts-Dunton wrote of its author:
A characteristic matter connected with Borrow’s translation [of a work of literature in Welsh] is that in the Quarterly Review for January 1861 he himself reviewed it anonymously, and not without appreciation of its merits—a method which may be recommended to those authors who are not in sympathy with their reviewers. The article showed a great deal of what may be called Borrovian knowledge of the Welsh language and Welsh literature, and perhaps it is not ungenerous to say a good deal of Borrovian ignorance too. Continue reading