If you are interested in blogging or want to promote your book, please contact E. B. Davis at writerswhokill@gmail.com.

Our reason for creating WWK originated as an outlet for our love of reading and writing mystery fiction. We hope you love it, too, and will enjoy our holiday gifts to our readers with original short stories to celebrate the season. Starting on 11/16 stories by Warren Bull, Margaret S. Hamilton, Paula Gail Benson, Linda Rodriguez, KM Rockwood, Gloria Alden, and E. B. Davis will appear every Thursday into the New Year.

Our November Author Interviews: 11/8--Ellen Byron, and 11/15--Sujata Massey. Please join us in welcoming these authors to WWK.

November Saturday Bloggers: 11/4 Margaret S. Hamilton and 11/11 Cheryl Hollon.

Congratulations to our writers for the following publications:

Shari Randall's "Pets" will be included in Chesapeake Crimes: Fur, Feathers, and Felonies anthology, which will be published in 2018. In the same anthology "Rasputin," KM Rockwood's short story, will also be published. Her short story "Goldie" will be published in the Busted anthology, which will be released by Level Best Books on April 25th.

In addition, our prolific KM will have the following shorts published as well: "Making Tracks" in Passport to Murder, Bouchercon anthology, October 2017 and "Turkey Underfoot," just published, will appear in the anthology The Killer Wore Cranberry: a Fifth Course of Chaos.

James M. Jackson's 4th book in the Seamus McCree series, Doubtful Relations, is now available. His novella "Low Tide at Tybee" appears February 7 as part of Lowcountry Crimes: Four Novellas, which is available for order.


Friday, October 12, 2012

Mitt and Barack as Story Tellers

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                           Sorry Ann,                           
I don’t want you to think I’m piling on your beloved husband.  During the lengthy primary and election cycle I know Republicans as well as Democrats have taken Mitt to task for one thing or another.    I’m sure it must make you grit your teeth. No wonder you asked the critics to get off Mr. Romney’s back and get to work for him. I had a friend who used to say, “The loudest cheerleaders are the ones least likely to get into the game.”  Coaches and political campaigners are frequently criticized after the fact                
So I am not going to second-guess his political ideas or his speeches as such. I’m not going to support either candidate, I’m going to talk about both candidates as storytellers.  (By the way, you and Michelle both did a wonderful job at the conventions presenting a human, even a loving portrait of each spouse.)
When you whittle the various message ads and debates done to the core, Mitt seems to me to have crafted the basic storyline of: “My opponent is terrible at his job. Fire him. Hire Me.”  Now, can you think of a successful national campaign that had this as a thesis?  I cannot.  Yes, Richard Nixon used the “red scare” against Adlai Stevenson and Kennedy invented a non-existent “missile gap” against Nixon but each had a positive main message.
Barack, in contrast has the underlying story as: “Things remain to be accomplished.  Keep me on this difficult job.” Think about Franklin Delano Roosevelt  during World War II or Abraham Lincoln’s second term as president.  Times were tough. The leaders admitted making mistakes, but they called on people to help them stay the course.  Pretty stirring stuff.
I think one problem with using an attack on your opponent as the primary focus of a campaign is that it says nothing positive about you.  Another problem is the negative tone of an attack can easily veer into the sound of whining.  Nobody likes a whiner. Also, if you don’t provide a self-portrait, the other side will provide one that you do not like. 

Erick Herzik, Chair of the Political Science Department at the University of Nevada, Reno, who is a Republican and a supporter of your husband said the typical voter’s reaction to hearing your spouse speak was, “Where’s the rest of the story? Mitt is absolutely correct in that the more details he reveals, the more questions he will get. On the other hand, without details Mitt ends up out of focus.
Some of Mitt’s supporters seem to employ the worst sort of invective against Mr. Obama.  I don’t know if he’s behind them, but I do believe that he is at least covertly encouraging them.  That may fire up part of Mitt’s base, but I truly believe that in the long run it will diminish Mitt’s reputation.  They are not really supporters of Mitt at all.  They are detractors of the president, of whom one commentator said, “They’d vote for a toaster oven before they’d vote for Obama.
Agree or disagree? Feel free to comment.


Gloria Alden said...

Good blog, Warren. I'm wondering what you think after the Biden, Ryan debate last night. I've always been a fan of Joe Biden, even if he sometimes puts his foot in his mouth. Too me, he's proved himself a genuine caring person over the years. He is what you see.

Linda Rodriguez said...

I think you nailed it as far as the storytelling of each candidate, Warren. Mitt isn't really telling a story, at all. Obama does better in the position of crafter of a narrative. But as you noted, both wives did a super job of telling their husband's stories at the conventions.

Warren Bull said...

I thought both men did well in the VP debate. but Ryan was more open about his side wanting to reverse the Roe vs Wade decision. I think they've been trying to keep that vague.

Warren Bull said...

Thanks, Linda.

Alyx Morgan said...

What a great way of whittling down each side's message, Warren. With all the muckraking & one liners (from both sides), it's sometimes hard to hear the underlying message.

Warren Bull said...

So true, Alyx

Judy Alter said...

Very well stated. Thanks.

Kara Cerise said...

You made an excellent point that a politician, or anyone who wants to influence a group, needs to be a masterful story teller.

It will be interesting to hear the stories told after the election.

Pat Brown said...

I think you're dead right about being positive rather than negative is a winning strategy. If you concentrate on slamming your opponent people will eventually ask 'tell me specifically you would do it.' And some formless 'we'll do better. Trust us' is not the way to do it.

Warren Bull said...

Kara, Both Ronald Reagan and Bill Clinton were great at telling stories as president.

Warren Bull said...

Judy, You're welcome.

Warren Bull said...

Pat, That is my belief too.

Kaye George said...

I think that's a good analysis, Warren. And an interesting take on this campaign. I'll be glad when it's over!

Polly Iyer said...

Excellent, Warren. I have less trouble with "the story" if it remains consistent. Where I have a problem is when the story changes from day to day, and it's difficult to determine where a person stands. In this case, one must pay attention to the narrative. Very close attention.

Warren Bull said...

Kaye, I will be happy too when it ends, I hope it ends the way I want it to.

Warren Bull said...

Good point, Polly.