Monday, May 23, 2011

Book Reviews

I was pa-rousing the blogging world today, trying to get caught up on everything I've missed this week, when I came upon this fascinating post. It is from a blog titled Down The Rabbit Hole, which I just love.

This particularly post is about whether or not people should/do write negative book reviews on their blogs. This really stood out to me because it's been something I've been thinking about a lot as an aspiring author.

This particular blogger, Amber, is of the mindset that she will absolutely tell the truth, but in a kind way. She tries to make sure to explain what it is that she doesn't like and press the fact that it might just not be her particular cup of tea.

I thoroughly agree with this perspective. I have been receiving feedback from my beta readers these past few days and one in particular has expressed concern that I make sure and read her comments with a tone of respect. She wanted to make sure that I knew she wasn't trying to come across as impolite.

I thoroughly appreciate her for being honest with me. That's why I asked her to read the book in the first place. How can you improve upon something if no one tells you what's wrong with it?

It is difficult to read something you wrote in an objective fashion. You are either going to love it, or hate it. It's hard to see it in the middle. It's hard to miss plot holes or undeveloped characters because the story is complete in your own mind.

Criticism, good and bad, is such as important part of the writing process.

As I contemplated my position on the matter, I read through the comments that were posted. There were a few commenters who said that if they didn't like the book, they just avoided doing a post at all. To them, it was a win-win situation. But from the author's perspective, I don't think it is a win-win at all. It's just taking the easy way out.

Negative reviews can have such a strong impact on an author, why would you deny them that? If you present your reasonings with respect, you shouldn't feel bad about it. It was the truth.

I am afraid of the reviews that may appear about my book, though it has nothing to do with whether or not they were bad. I hope that if and when I do get a bad review, the reader will be kind enough to explain why they didn't like it so that I can take that feedback and improve.

As my Dad always says, I have tender feelings, but it's only if someone is being blatantly rude.

I can handle the truth. Can you?

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