Posted by: Trisha Leigh | September 21, 2011

The Thin Line Between Love and Hate

Something odd happened last week. Tyra Banks uttered words that stuck with me. Although I can’t recall the exact quote, it was something about polarity, and about how the opposite of love isn’t hate.

It’s apathy.

The idea, which I’ve heard before, is that if people love you or hate you, at least you made them think or feel something. Even if it’s bad. And that’s worthwhile.

This is my favorite Elaine episode on Seinfeld. Sorry about the poor quality, I didn’t make it.

For the record, I’m with Elaine. I despised The English Patient. But it did make me think about filmmaking, about the storytelling elements that connect with me and the ones that don’t. Regardless of how you felt about it, the film made people discuss. Recently I’ve had these disagreements about Crazy. Stupid. Love. (I didn’t care for it), Drive (I thought it was fantastic), Fright Night (so much enjoyment), and whether or not 80’s “classics” deserve a remake (No. 99% of the time).

There are novels I’ve loved and ones I’ve hated that have stirred the opposite feelings in people I know. There are novels I never talk over with my friends because I forget about them before I turn the last page.

If my books are ever published, I’m not afraid of people hating them. I’m afraid of people not caring. Whether or not a story has value lies in its ability to connect with the reader, not how many copies sell or lists on which it lands. If words I write make even one person’s eyes go wide, or their heart squeeze as they think that is exactly it it will be a good day.

If you’d like to take the opportunity to “discuss” in the comments what you think about any of the movies I’ve mentioned, or some of your favorite books you’ve liked or disliked, and what about them made you think, I’m all ears!

What I’m watching right this minute: Seinfeld. What else.



  1. I hate apathy. Been on the receiving end of it many times and it SUCKS.

    When you asked about books, I immediately thought of The Road. I HATED this book and it’s not because it was a bad book. It just left me feeling so many negative emotions, I can honestly say I didn’t enjoy it.

    Then, there are many books I’ve read that I forgot as soon as I closed the cover. I can’t even remember the titles now.

    Great post. πŸ™‚

    • Thanks Patty. I’m saving The Road for when I’m already feeling depressed and want to wallow in it a bit…perhaps around February. πŸ™‚

  2. Let’s discuss “The English Patient” Noooo just kidding. I’ve never seen it and I’m APATHETIC about it. There! Good good post!!
    P.S. I hate Seinfeld with a passion! Now I wonder if I should be apathetic instead. Hmmm…

    • Hmm. You realize of course this means we can’t be friends. Seinfeld is a deal breaker. πŸ˜‰

  3. Yes–forgettable books are much worse to me than books I don’t like. I never want someone to forget they read my book!

    • Exactly! Sometimes a book I JUST FINISHED disappears and I can’t even recall the characters names. I would hate for that to happen to my babies.

  4. There are a lot of books that people I’ve respected have loved, and I couldn’t even finish, or hated, or went “huh?”

    I don’t want my writing to be forgettable either. Truthfully, I’m more worried about whether people would ever pick my books up.

    But I don’t think your writing is forgettable, Trisha. Besides writing cleanly and clearly, you have really unique subjects. So many YA books now are just the same old story. Yours aren’t.

    • My confidence is pretty bruised at the moment, so thank you for your kind words. I know what you mean about some books people “rave” about, then read them and think “did we read the same book?” One thing that contributes is that not every book will speak to every person, of course. I won’t get into the other reasons here. πŸ™‚

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