Writers put themselves out there. I never realized I would get such hate mail, people attacking me personally, saying such horrible things, over such innocent, humorous articles in a magazine. It takes a lot out of you.
I thought that if I avoid politics, religion, anything controversial, I could make people smile. But that's not true. People seem to be looking for reasons to hate, reasons to make you feel bad.
Even this blog is just about classic book reviews. I never criticize the authors, I only discuss the books themselves. But I get more hate mail than positive feedback. And the hate mail always attacks me personally. It's like I have to walk in lock-step with whoever happens to be reading me, or else they feel the right to attack me personally. People don't live and let live anymore. It's all about total, 100% agreement with their point of view, or else you are a despicable person who must die.
I'll have to ponder this more before I can give some philosophical, helpful insight. At the moment, I'm still stunned.
The local woman who sent me that email is Tathata Revis. The email was extremely vile, and made sexual references to my daughter. I don't know this person, but the situation concerns me. She lives in the same small town as me, and who knows what she is capable of. Certainly I wouldn't put it past her to contact me again, or try to contact my family. Tathata Revis is the kind of person who would probably send emails to my editor to get me (or anyone she dislikes or disagrees with) off the magazine. Her motto must be "Reach out and hurt someone."