Monday, October 27, 2014

Understanding a Bad Review : An Author's Note

It's the dreaded one star review. That's the thing that makes some authors go batshit. Hell, apparently a three star review can do the same thing.

Authors are so special, aren't we?

Well, I'm not. I've got some stories out there with one and two star reviews. I have one review :  They Hated Me  that has to be one of the best reviews evah (yes, I'm Sami Summers and I wrote that wonderful story).

Isn't that a great review? And the comments cracked me up. Also, there were plenty of one stars on Goodreads for all my titles and Amazon has one or two also. What does that mean to me as an author? It means someone bothered to read the book and comment. That's all it means.

Some people aren't going to like what you write. It doesn't mean you failed and it doesn't mean they're wrong. It means that nothing is beloved by everyone. Hell, Little Women by Louisa May Alcott has 27 one star reviews.  (If Little Women has 27 one star reviews, how the fuckety fuck does any author think they're not going to get some also?)

I learned a long time ago while in college that your work needs to stand by itself and get ripped. There's nothing like a college creative writing class critiquing something you think is wonderful to help you lose your ego.

And that's all it is. Ego.We hate being told we aren't perfect but seriously, we aren't.

To Kill a Mockingbird has 111 one star reviews.
Pride and Prejudice has 43 one star reviews.
The Old Man and the Sea has 72 one star reviews.

Seriously Miss Author, you think you're better than that?

Sunday, October 26, 2014

Mea Culpa

I cannot tell you how guilty I feel for ever buying a Deborah Smith book.


Thursday, October 23, 2014

#HaleNo: Blogger Blackout






Apparently from today until Monday, bloggers are ceasing reviews and discussing our love of reading and the romance community.

We're joining with them because honestly, it's easy to forget why we're all in this and why we care.

And I'll begin with my little story:

I've always been a voracious reader but it was mostly literary fiction. Loved that shizz. Still do. Give me a beautifully written book and I puddle on the floor in a gooey mess.

But I also loved to buy Harlequins from Goodwill... a bag of them for about $5 and I could finish them off quickly and sometimes sigh. Sometimes get really annoyed because the heroines always seemed so damned weak. I hate really young heroines. Hate really innocent heroines. And a lot of the books I was reading had young, innocent heroines. So I had a great love/hate thing going on with the books.

And then somewhere I read a review for Absolutely Positively by Jayne Ann Krentz. I don't remember but since she was a Seattle author and I lived in Seattle, it was probably a local review. And I bought the book.

Ms. Krentz doesn't write innocent schoolgirls who need saving. Her heroes were alphas but her heroines were too. They worked together and saved each other. And I fell in love.

I read everything she wrote and hunted down her entire backlist (except the historicals because I just wasn't interesting in that genre). It might have ended there too except I was in a bookstore looking for anything else Krentz and somehow saw Welcome to Temptation by Jennifer Crusie. I picked it up and read the blurb. Decided to try it.

My life changed forever.

Tuesday, October 21, 2014

Hitler tries to self publish Mein Kampf: by Colin Falconer

Passing the Word

Janet of DA has always seemed so cerebral, an intelligentsia, if you will. I like this impassioned woman much better.

http://dearauthor.com/features/letters-of-opinion/poisoning-the-well/

Lori:  I'm adding this here and not in the comments because I want to make sure it's seen.

I'm pissed off. Seriously seriously pissed off.

Reading the comments on DA and the number of women saying that they're afraid, that they've quit leaving bad reviews, that they're thinking of stopping blogging, it infuriates me. I liken it to someone getting raped at a bar so now no women will go to bars or drink or wear pretty clothes because I don't want it to happen to me.

Nobody can promise you safety. But nobody can promise you won't get hit by a falling meteorite when you leave your house today. But you can't live your life like that and you can't make choices out of fear alone.

And if you like to drink, go to a bar. If you like to review books honestly, review books honestly.

Demand safety.

If you like a bar but you know a rape happened in its parking lot, then ask the management to have a bouncer walk you to your car. If they won't, then go to a bar that will.

Harper Teen says they won't guarantee your privacy if you accept an arc for review? Don't review Harper Teen. But guess what? Random House will so give Random House your business. (Making a point, I have no idea what RH does).

The Guardian thinks its okay to publish a stalker opinion piece? Cancel your subscription. Ask others to cancel theirs. Let The Guardian know and move on.

Demand safety.

Don't hide. Speak up. Demand safety.

Everytime a blogger stops blogging or someone deletes a negative review in fear, the StGRB group gets their wings. We don't want that to happen.

Demand your safety.

Don't give up.

Sunday, October 19, 2014

Our Promise To You

With all the crazy out there and batshit authors, name calling, crazy-ass lawsuits... I think it's time Carolyn and I make a pledge to our readers.

1. We will never stalk you. Unless you're Dwayne Johnson. Then we will.

2. You can say shitty things about our books. So can we. In fact, we'll probably beat you to it.

3. We won't stop DNFing, giving crap reviews and being the foul mouthed mean girls we are. Why? We want to. And we earned it. You don't get this many grey hairs and wrinkles without earning something. For us, it's being who we are.

4. We will never support anyone who thinks it's okay to argue with a reviewer, to call a blog or blogger mean girls, or who thinks it's okay to dox someone. Seriously, you support doxxing, we will be nasty ass bitches and piss all over you.

5. We won't always agree with other women blogging/reviewing/being nasty-ass bitches but we'll support their right to do so. Just cause you don't like the tone or language, well... fuck you. Nobody needs your permission to be who they are. Including us.

6. If the STGRB likes you, we probably won't. If they hate you, we're probably fans.

7. Did I mention you can say shitty things about our writing and we just won't care? Seriously. You should see what they said about one of my first pages on Dear Author awhile back. Eviscerated my writing. After I ate a bucket of chicken and drank a liter of vodka I just laughed it off.

8. Did I mention not stalking, doxxing, or being special snowflakes. Seriously.