Tuesday, September 15, 2009

I don't hate Dan Brown

Darn it, this Parade magazine article humanized him! When I read "The Da Vinci Code" years ago (at the behest of my brother who insisted it was pure awesome), I did what any normal writer would do with it: I trashed the writing while praising the plot. It was the very definition of a page-turner, even more so than "Twilight." No matter how wooden the dialogue or trite the prose, I couldn't stop reading.

I learned a lot from Brown's book: keep chapters short, end chapters on mini-cliffhangers, go for the biggest, boldest plot ever. But this is not to say I liked it. I especially hated that such a poorly-written novel could become such a massive international bestseller. It didn't seem fair that Brown's book could catapult him into the stratosphere with such writing stars as Stephen King and Dean Koontz, both commercial writers who actually do know how to write. I didn't even want him to do well.

Now I do. I read that article and I...like Dan Brown. I respect that he works very hard. I appreciate that he is humble about his success. I love his skepticism, his female-centric spirituality, and that he does not, in fact, picture Tom Hanks when he writes about his character, Robert Langdon.

I always assumed I would read his new novel, "The Lost Symbol," but now, gosh darn it, as with other writers I like personally, I want Dan Brown to do well.