Ethan Van Scriver is discovering what we already knew would happen.
Matters took a sinister and bizarre turn when Twelve Rules for Life: An Antidote to Chaos by Dr. Jordan Peterson with illustrations by Van Sciver was released last week. Freelance journalist Nick Monroe has reported that EVS received the following interview request from self-described journalist Asher Elbein via Twitter direct message:
ASHER ELBEIN: Hey, Ethan. There’s quite a few allegations going around about bullying and abuse coming from your quarter, and there have been for a while. I wanted to reach out and let you know that I was working on a piece on the subject, and to give you a chance to respond.
I’ll be honest. I don’t like a lot of what I’ve seen. But I’m genuinely interested in what you have to say, and I’m open to being convinced.
ETHAN VAN SCIVER: What have you seen that’s concerned you, Asher?
AE: Sorry! Want to give you my full attention, but I’m on deadline for another piece. Can we set up a time for a formal interview sometime in the next few weeks?
EVS: Probably not. Ask questions here, I’ll answer them. I’d like you to begin by finding this “harassment” of Mr. Ayo. He’s been calling me a Nazi for six months, I asked him to discuss it and work it out with me. [H]e got very angry. I backed off and blocked him. This is being used to attack me, and I am surprised you can’t see that.
On and on into infinity. Now: I’ve never met this fellow. This might be something we can work out, let him see my humanity; explain myself. I hoped that would be the case. I was surprised to see him turn it around me as some kind of campaign by me to harass HIM.
At that point, Elbein blocked Van Sciver from sending him further Twitter DMs.
The bit at the end where it turns out the supposed reporter wasn’t working for the Atlantic, supposedly, is interesting as well. SJW’s always lie, and all that. Hope Ethan read the book, or at least the survival guide.
Brian closed with this sentiment:
Whether or not you approve of his opinions, Ethan Van Sciver has repeatedly and consistently upheld his dedication to entertaining readers by opposing the kind of insufferable message fic that nearly killed print SF and threatens to kill comics. It’s a stance I wholeheartedly share.
My only issue with him isn’t that he knocked the art on QM ( which was serviceable but uneven, even accounting for taste), nor even the fact that he’s such a comics Otaku that the type of story being told in QM and why it doesn’t fit his ideas of pace/etc (and why being an expert in a declining and shrinking industry may make your expertise less than 100 relevant on growing said market) slipped past him – though the latter, after having it explained to him, is a little more of an issue.
It’s the fact that he could not understand it only takes one side to start a war. That he was willing, like many “conservatives”, to accept the label applied by those he supposedly opposed as to what is “badthink”. That to the left, the personal, everything that doesn’t fit their moral worldview, is political, and anyone working from a view anchored in truth and the belief that, no matter how poorly we perceive it, that there IS indeed truth and an objective reality, are their enemies, and will be attacked, among other things, for being “political”.
I believe he does understand that one must create stuff that isn’t of the left, but I don’t think he’d internalized that even that, even avoiding explicitly showing crosses at vampires so to speak, or even avoiding blatant and explicit Nazi imagery for example (which the rebel flag is not – geez, leftists play at being worldly but are so bloody provincial), that is cause for war by the left. I think he sincerely wants Arkhaven to improve, I think some of his comments (and for that matter, some of Daddy Warpigs on JimFear, though I think DW misses a few things there as well regarding economics and the target market, right or wrong) were spot on. I think we should work to iterate and improve (and that he doesn’t realize that means starting off less polished than you’d like, and improving, iterating; see Honda’s history in the US selling cars).
And I think he is only now beginning to realize how much more outside of his immediate context he didn’t know.
In the meantime, I’m glad he’s standing fast. He hasn’t been an ass and I’ll gladly give cover as long as he is shooting left.