Some questions for Julian Ruck

These questions are too reasonable to be left to rot down the page in a comments list, so here they are in all their glory, with thanks to Welshnot – from here on in, you’re in his capable hands.

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I’m not sure what relevance the issue of Radio Cymru’s dispute with musicians has to your accusations of corruption, skulduggery etc in Anglo-Welsh publishing. You’re flailing about from one reactionary position to another. I’m not a Welsh speaker, though I have observed your own bigoted and nasty comments about Welsh, and have observed your attempt to censor reminders of them on this blog.

The fact remains that you have clearly decided to accept comment this new year, and I applaud that.

So here are my questions:

1 – why did you claim to have an agent when you do not? and why did you claim it in the Kidwelly press kit when you know perfectly well you did not then?

2 – why have you claimed never to have submitted to a Welsh publisher, when you have submitted to Welsh publishers? You were turned down by Seren in 2009, as you know. Is that why you harbour such a grudge against them? and if not, why claim you never submitted?

3 – you accuse writers of being corrupt and nepotistic, but you have never once provided proof of this. All you have done is point out – easily discoverable because you don’t need to use FOIs as it’s all in the Lit Wales reports, etc – that money goes to the arts, in this case literature, to fund writing and writers and publishers. It happens in England, Scotland, Ireland (where writers get tax breaks…) and everywhere in Europe.

4 – But your grudge is against Welsh writers. Why? Because you feel hard done by because no-one wants your books. I can’t blame them – you write appallingly, and you’re welcome to self-publish as a last resort, but not to smear individuals who are creative and ambitious and whose work is assessed by peer review.

5 – If you find evidence of corruption – I mean evidence – show us. So far all you’ve done is accuse others, but as I said, where is the evidence of corruption (a big and serious word)?

6 – This is why the various people you’ve written to – audit office, Huw Lewis, MPs, AMs – have given you a wide berth: they know you’re an attention-seeking chipmaster who is driven by envy, and is lashing out at other because his festival was a humiliation and his books have been turned down.

7 – You also plagiarised Christopher Hitchens, and plagiarism is an appalling thing for a professional writer to do. It shows contempt for the craft and your fellow writers.

8 – whatever happened to Catherine Zeta Jones’s role in the film of your novel? Or is that just another Ruck fantasy?

I read your talk at the Chapter, and there is simply no proof that any of the money given to Welsh writing was improperly given or corruptly dispensed. Just a list of people and what they got. I could do that for art, music, dance, opera, and allege corruption, but I would have the decency to prove it. You don’t.

Prove your allegations Julian.

I personally believe in funding for all the arts, because I believe the arts are a source of added value, and in my daily life as a teacher I see their benefits. If arts money were improperly dispensed or corruptly got, I’d be interested, but until you furnish proof that it is you will look like a bitter, axe-grinding reject. Your only supporters are your ex-intern and serial grumbler Gillian B.

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Some convincing arguments here, Julian. Have you got the cojones to respond to any of them?

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