Expectations and Allowances

Posted in blog, rambly, reviews, shitstorm | Leave a comment
So there’s been a lot of talk going around the interwebs the last few weeks about the interactions between authors and reviewers. We’ve seen several implosions on GoodReads and Amazon (which are nicely summed up over on PW.) I’ll be honest. I’ve been a tad hesitant to even really talk about any of it – I’m not fond of shitstorms, and getting involved in one that has nothing to do with me personally isn’t my goal. I’m also not going to get into the argument of what constitutes a “legitimate” review. Everyone’s definition is going to be different on that. You can go to Amazon to find out what to read, or GoodReads or by word of mouth, or by fortune cookie. I don’t care. And I shouldn’t care. I just ask that they make sense. (And I’ve seen some reviews that clearly weren’t proofread or grammar-checked before being posted. Just as… Read more

WTF Sunday

Posted in blog, rambling, reviews, wtf | Leave a comment
I had an awesome WTFkery planned for today, but alas, ebay has taken it down. Essentially, a couple of kids had been using their Beyblades in the bathtub. Connor has some of those and they spin pretty hard, but I guess in this case the Beyblades did about $500 worth of damage to the tub and tiles with their spinning, so the pissed off parents were putting up the Beyblades for sale…and they posted a picture of the these two completely devastated boys holding the bag of Beyblades. Sort of priceless, even if it was probably a hoax (Last I saw, the auction was up to about $300, which is way, way more than the toys are worth.). I showed it to Connor and he was, of course, all about the Beyblades. “I hope they don’t get rid of those two that light up. Those are cool.” Indeed. I suppose they are.… Read more

Thrill Me With Your Acumen

Posted in david garrett, rant, reviews | 3 Comments
I’ll admit I’m not much of a reviewer. Not of books or music or movies, or really anything else. Not because I don’t have an opinion, but I can’t be bothered to make the effort. (I probably should, particularly on GoodReads, but that’s another story.)  If a reviewer likes or dislikes something, I want to know why. What was it that struck him or her as good, or great, or just plain terrible? I understand that things can’t always be explained. Sometimes things just don’t resonate for whatever reason, and that’s fine too. One can simply say, “I didn’t like it.”  But being a reviewer doesn’t give you the right to bash. Personal blogs may be a different matter, but if I read a review on a “professional” site, then I really to expect that review to have at least a modicum of decorum. Which brings me to the crux… Read more

How Many Stars?

Posted in reviews, writing | 4 Comments
I’ve been told that it’s general wisdom for an author to not read their reviews on Amazon (or wherever the general population can leave an opinion.) I don’t know how many authors actually do or don’t, but I’ll admit I’ve seen a fair bit of griping about the occasional bad apple review spoiling a set. And even if the author *does* read them, it’s considered good manners to not say anything directly to the reviewers. After all, everyone is entitled to their opinions, even if they’re lousy. (Although it can be pretty irritating to see people reviewing things that they haven’t actually read or seen yet – basing their entire “experience” on what they imagine the book to be. And there are always armchair jockeys that review everything from music to art with absolutely no idea of what it is they’re talking about.) For an author to try to enter the murky waters of… Read more