I work for an arts organization that throws public dollars at writers incapable of supporting their work on their own merits, but whom the literary establishment considers worthy of sustenance. Every now and again I come across a project proposal that sounds cool and so I, enthused, leap to the author's website.
This has taught me that, nearly without exception, literary writers are buttheads. The website of such authors usually includes:
grim and frostbitten biography;
philosophical underpinnings of their literary decrepitude;
I've found a few authors who obviously possess an unpretentious spirit and whose websites are consequently non-stupid... I'd point you to them, because they deserve recognition if for nothing other than being undouchebags, but I think technically that would be a breach of the Access to Information and Privacy Act to which I am an ideological vassal.
Funny thing, though, is speculative fiction authors are just as bad--perhaps worse. Science fiction and its subgenres, especially--a genre demanding of its proponents innovation and critical thinking--are particularly heinous when it comes to such absurdist self-replication. Genre writers: they've seen it all. Except you haven't seen what they've seen. Not until you've bought their new book.
If I am ever a Famous Writer, my one goal is going to be to possess the adjective-state of non-jackassery. I think the act of merely not being a pretentious dork would gain me fans the world over.
Of course, I'm slightly worried that this disease of the attitude is something that occurs entirely without effort. I am entirely worried I am already possessing of the adjective state of non-non-jackassery.
Weigh in, readers! Am I pretentious? Are... you?