One little light in a sea of darkness

Recently I have been the victim of bullies on a reader’s site called Goodreads. At first, I was deflated and even cried over it, sad to say. However, I decided to look into this matter further in order NOT to be a victim again! This is what I found…Apparently, there are quite a few people on this site who have attacked other new authors such as me. It is nice to know you are not alone when the chips are down and even more wonderful to see people defend you. It lends credit to the valid fact of the reality of this attack. It is tough enough following your dreams out there in any pursuit, but to have bored and vindictive people prey on you is appalling and pathetic. This same group has even discouraged writers from not only the site out of the pain inflicted-but even one author is not writing anymore! To me that is a crime in itself. To reduce anyone to such sadness is horrible. It is time we take a stand against bullies in any form. My goal in writing is not only to share my passion for the craft and writing about such amazing things I have found in my research… I truly enjoy sharing with the reader-but also to give power and hope to others reaching out in this huge world on their own dreams. Please, support those around you with any spark and encourage it to grow with positive feedback and inspiration. Help stop those who are bent on destroying people for their own entertainment and mean wills. I hope to reach people out there in a positive light and to encourage them to bring out more positive and light out there. Each light helps to drown out the darkness! Each little light and voice out there is important so please take a stand and be strong and encourage those besides you to stay strong as well! Here is a wonderful site I found http://www.stopthegrbullies.com/ My own attack was mentioned in this blog. It is wonderful to know others out there want more light as well! Thank you! I would love to hear from others who have been attacked by this vindictive group of people so I can help you! Again, one little light…Thank you for all of your incredible support through this 
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Published on January 20, 2013 08:57
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message 1: by Sharon (new)

Sharon Desruisseaux Sorry, I just had to add that I met another author on this site who was attacked for his writing in a similar way and within minutes-I was attacked for defending him. So sad that people are in wait for the attack. I will back off on my own defense but I wil help others and that is my stance. It is just not right to inflict such harm on the internet such as this. Wrtiers stay strong and know you are not alone. There are wonderful readers who value a constructive review such as I and are appalled at those who are trying to ruin such a good venue with such wretched venom.


message 2: by Sharon (new)

Sharon Desruisseaux Thank you Gary! I will and I hope others will be too with all of this going on! :)


message 3: by Ceilidh (new)

Ceilidh I hope you're aware of the fact that the "wonderful site" Stop the GR Bullies posted the personal details and locations of several bloggers, one of whom received threatening phone calls as a result. These "bully" reviewers were simply GR members who didn't always give positive reviews, and none of them deserved the treatment that disgusting website inflicted upon them. It is entirely up to you who you decide to align yourself with, but please be aware of the facts in regards to that website. They're not fighting bullies. They are the bullies.


message 4: by Sharon (new)

Sharon Desruisseaux Yikes! Thank you! I will look into this even further I just want an end to the negativity. It is horrible how a good forum could have such corruption on it. I am just opposed to those who are leading the insulting tirades. And no one deserves any bashing at all. Really.


message 5: by Katie(babs) (new)

Katie(babs) Sharon, I have to ask, why do you read your reviews here or upload your books if you're uncomfortable with people posting reviews on Goodreads? You don't need Goodreads to help get your books out or with your sales. From your post here, you feel Goodreads has given you a lot of grief. Perhaps it's best to pretend Goodreads doesn't exist.

It can hurt when you receive a negative review, and at times mean review for your work, but imagine if you went to a restaurant and the service was horrible or a movie that you didn't like? Everyone complains about the restaurant or movie, even going as far to call the actors in the movie ugly, fat, what have you. The same goes for books and a reader's opinion is subjective.

It's best to let it go and not come on Goodreads anymore because it's a service for readers to talk about book honestly without a filter sometimes.


message 6: by [deleted user] (new)

Where is the bully review of your book?


message 7: by Ade (new)

Ade The author who quit writing is not at all faultless. She attacked a reader for giving a one-star review of her book and then continued to harass her by trying to make her answer questions about specific chapters in one of the books she rated. That blog is a complete and utter mess, and it's not really one you should be glad about getting attention from. If you've noticed, you probably now have more people putting your books on their respective "will-not-read" lists after the post. And I'm also wondering where the bully review is. If it's the one where they pointed out all of your mistakes, that's not really a bully review.


message 8: by Caty (last edited Jan 20, 2013 03:26PM) (new)

Caty With all due respect, this entry just reads like a tantrum. Art is appreciated differently by every viewer, or in this case reader. Not everyone will like everything you write just because you put your heart on it, that's a fact of life and something every artist must come to terms with if he or she decides to share his work with the world. I actually feel kind of bullied every time i read this kind of post, do I have to like every single book i read? No, and that's the whole point of this site. And goodreads is a site for READERS. My advice to you and other writers is to stay away from it if you can't handle critics and to respect the opinions of the same readers you are trying to reach with your stories.


message 9: by Cory (new)

Cory Where were you bullied? Here? ----> http://www.goodreads.com/review/show/...

Also, it would be much easier to read your posts if you didn't have such an adverse reaction to paragraph breaks.

You're barely a blip on anyone's radar. You don't have more than twenty ratings or reviews on any of your books. I have more ratings and reviews on one short story than you do on all of your novels combined. I really think you need to put up your big girl panties and suck it up. Being a writer is hard. You will be criticized. Get over it.


message 10: by Cory (new)

Cory Ah, basically, more review whining. I figured as much.

http://www.goodreads.com/author_blog_...


message 11: by Ceilidh (new)

Ceilidh Bashing a book =/= bashing an author.

Negative criticism =/= bullying.


message 12: by Ade (new)

Ade Ceilidh wrote: "Bashing a book =/= bashing an author.

Negative criticism =/= bullying."


Pretty much.


message 13: by Misty (last edited Jan 20, 2013 04:29PM) (new)

Misty Ceilidh wrote: "I hope you're aware of the fact that the "wonderful site" Stop the GR Bullies posted the personal details and locations of several bloggers, one of whom received threatening phone calls as a result. These "bully" reviewers were simply GR members who didn't always give positive reviews, and none of them deserved the treatment that disgusting website inflicted upon them. It is entirely up to you who you decide to align yourself with, but please be aware of the facts in regards to that website. They're not fighting bullies. They are the bullies. "

THIS, and:

Ceilidh wrote: "Bashing a book =/= bashing an author.

Negative criticism =/= bullying."


THIIIIIIIIIS*.

I'm not saying reviewer -> author bulling doesn't happen, but generally, I call shenanigans. It's almost always just someone expressing their opinion, as people are wont to do in consumer reviews, and someone else taking it personally because they can't separate a work performance critique from a personal attack.

*Thank you, Ceilidh, for always being reliably well-expressed. God, that was an awful sentence, but you know what I mean.


message 14: by ♡Karlyn P♡ (last edited Jan 21, 2013 04:08PM) (new)

♡Karlyn P♡ Bekka (Pretty Deadly Reviews) wrote: "Where is the bully review of your book?"

From what I can tell, it started back in October when the author responded to a negative review about her book on AMAZON, not GOODREADS. She has deleted the offending posts, but it summary it was a rant where she talked about the author in third-person, complained how hard the author worked on this book. She even accused the reviewer of not reading the book. Later in the thread she admits to being the author. This got her book shelved on GR by one person (and then another) who saw the rant and shelved it under a simple 'avoid' shelf. The author began to privately mail these people with some very condesending comments and complaining how unfair they are to her for shelving her books. (There were no reviews on GR at the time). Soon came her blog about how she, not the readers, was attacked.

http://www.amazon.com/review/R57Z7UN3...

ETA: I found the screenshot of the missing post. At the time, the author was using a different name for her book.

For full view, click here: http://behindstgrb.files.wordpress.co...



message 15: by [deleted user] (new)

Great find!


message 16: by Ava (last edited Jan 21, 2013 04:00PM) (new)

Ava "... wonderful site ..."

... you know their list of 'bullies' include minors under the age of 16? And that they have, will, and continue to harass, and annoy them?


Nenia ✨ I yeet my books back and forth ✨ Campbell Really? My experience has been the complete opposite. I get my fair share of criticism, sure, but it's usually justified. One lady even gave me a list of all my typos, replete with page numbers. It was absolutely wonderful.

Did they insult you as a person, or just criticize your book? Because there's a difference between having someone tell you to "f*** off" and having someone tell you that your book is the work of an amateur. I've had people say both things to me, so I would know.


message 18: by Gillian (last edited Jan 21, 2013 04:54PM) (new)

Gillian Hi Sharon! :) I'm really enjoying reading your blogs. Some people are trying to twist your words, but I know and everyone else knows that you are taking a stand against ALL bullying.

Yes STGRB is a great site. You'll see a LOT of hate directed towards STGRB, this hates comes mainly from bullies who have been named and shamed on STGRB. Other people dislike STGRB because they believe the lies that the bullies make up about the site, obviously enough the bullies don't want ANYONE reading the STGRB site. The bullies never show any evidence of the accusations they make about STGRB, they just try to bully everyone into believing what they say. Where is the proof? Where are the screen shots? They are quick enough to take screen shots of other things, why not take screen shots of these rumours that they spread about STGRB?

The STGRB site is there for anyone to read and people can judge for themselves. Funnily enough it is the people who claim to hate the site who seem to read it the most. All that the STGRB blog does is show screen shots of authors been bullied. When you see these bullies at work you can quickly see that it is ALWAYS the very same trolls doing the bullying. STGRB draws attention to these bullies and that is why bullies hate the site so much.

Yes its true that STGRB mainly shows cases of authors been bullied, but they can't take on ALL internet bullying. At least they are doing something about it. From what I've read on STGRB it is very clear that they are against ALL bullying, but they concentrate mainly on bully book reviews. STGRB are ALWAYS saying that they don't think there is anything wrong with giving a book a one star review once you have READ the book and once you don't verbally attack the author in your review. The screen shots that STGRB show of authors been bullied can be very upsetting, but I am glad that STGRB name and shame the bullies.

I have never seen STGRB accuse someone of been a bully with-out showing proof. They don't just throw around crazy stories, they tell the story and then they show screen shots of exactly what they are talking about. That is basically all that they do, isn't it strange that people hate them so much?

I also hate ALL internet bullying, & I am aware that there are authors bullying reviewers just as much as there are reviewers bullying authors. Maybe someone should make a site were they tackle authors bullying reviewers. They could do it the same way as STGRB, tell the story of exactly what happened and then show the screen shots. Taking a stand against bullying is always a good thing.

So Sharon in my opinion you are very brave to stand up against ALL internet bullying. Pay no attention to the passive aggressive people who try to twist your words, it is clear what they are trying to do. As I explained in your other blog I too have been bullied on the internet. In my case I was a reader been attacked by other readers, thankfully it really didn't bother me, but I can understand how it can really upset some people. I often get verbally attacked for saying that I like reading STGRB, I imagine that there will be some people having a go at me here after I post this comment. If I see a nasty tone in a comment then I just don't read it, that way I don't feel the need to raise to the bait. :)

Everyone is free to read what ever blogs they want. Anyway the bullies read STGRB themselves, so they can't bully people for following a site that they follow themselves! If you are not a bully then you have nothing to worry about, its only the bullies who are named and shamed......

Take care Sharon! :) Its getting late now, but I'm sure that I'll talk to you again soon. It is great to see someone like you who is brave enough to stand up for what you believe in. XXX


message 19: by Ava (new)

Ava Gillian wrote: "Hi Sharon! :) I'm really enjoying reading your blogs. Some people are trying to twist your words, but I know and everyone else knows that you are taking a stand against ALL bullying.

Yes STGRB is..."


STGRB will put any user who has a 'no-thank-you' shelf on their 'bullies' list.

It's rather offensive to real bullies. If that's what it takes to be a badly-behaving-bully, then damn.


message 20: by [deleted user] (new)

Gillian wrote: "Hi Sharon! :) I'm really enjoying reading your blogs. Some people are trying to twist your words, but I know and everyone else knows that you are taking a stand against ALL bullying.

Yes STGRB is..."


STGRB has posted personal information such as real names, phone numbers, and addresses of reviewers who have written negative reviews or use 'do not read' shelves. Should we post screen shots of that, thus furthering the spread of reviewers private information?


message 21: by Sharon (new)

Sharon Desruisseaux Gillian wrote: "Hi Sharon! :) I'm really enjoying reading your blogs. Some people are trying to twist your words, but I know and everyone else knows that you are taking a stand against ALL bullying.

Yes STGRB is..."


Beautiful post! Thank you! :)


message 22: by Sharon (new)

Sharon Desruisseaux Nenia wrote: "Really? My experience has been the complete opposite. I get my fair share of criticism, sure, but it's usually justified. One lady even gave me a list of all my typos, replete with page numbers. It..."

I agree with you on the review. Some are very helpful and I love those as well. We are talking about a group as mentioned who goes around and follows the authors or reviewers and directly insults them-some are quite horrible. The language is certainy a part of it. As I mentioned, the reviews-good or bad are not what concerns me on this particular issue. I have spoke with several victims and of all they have endured. What seems to spark it all is any kind of question or comment regarding the bad review. If I receive one-I just would like to know more about it and what can be done. I view them as constructive as most should and go from there. Yet, these people are ony out to discredit the person to the point of the writers almost giving up writing. That is just a horrible thing to me and should not be allowed.


message 23: by Issendai (last edited Jan 28, 2013 11:46AM) (new)

Issendai Sharon wrote: "What seems to spark it all is any kind of question or comment regarding the bad review. If I receive one-I just would like to know more about it and what can be done. I view them as constructive as most should and go from there."

How would you categorize this comment?

ETA: In response to the "but I apologized!" defense: http://www.beautifully-invisible.com/...


message 24: by Katy (new)

Katy It's very interesting, Sharon, that they are dragging out your old comment, which you deleted, and not pointing out where you recanted, apologized to the reviewer, and went through to re-edit the book to make it better, giving credit to the reviewer for helping you improve the story... It's like so many people seem to be of the opinion that, "if you ever make a mistake, you must pay the price for eternity even if you have since made retribution for it." Which isn't very forgiving. We all make mistakes. When we seek forgiveness, why should we not be granted it? Why, instead, should people be constantly be dragging out those old mistakes?

I'm always astonished at people who seem to believe that as soon as you publish a book, you cease being a regular human and instead are expected to act like a demi-god, always perfect, never making a mistake.




message 25: by Sharon (new)

Sharon Desruisseaux Katy wrote: "It's very interesting, Sharon, that they are dragging out your old comment, which you deleted, and not pointing out where you recanted, apologized to the reviewer, and went through to re-edit the b..."

Thank you Katie! That was kind of you to notice that. I did make a mistake and learned much from it as well. :) That is what it is all about-learning and I have yet to know form them exactly they were commentint about. I corrected it anyways and republished the books in question. Stuff happens and we learn and get back up again.


message 26: by Sharon (new)

Sharon Desruisseaux Caty wrote: "With all due respect, this entry just reads like a tantrum. Art is appreciated differently by every viewer, or in this case reader. Not everyone will like everything you write just because you put ..."

I am sorry if you feel that way. But reading should be a positive experience to both the reader and the writer. I have no issue at all with bad reveiws-none. I appaud the person who will take the time to comment. It is the negative and insulting comments that are best left off. There is no reason for that at all. Also, writers are readers. That is what inspired us to write in the first place.


message 27: by Caty (new)

Caty Sharon wrote: "Caty wrote: "With all due respect, this entry just reads like a tantrum. Art is appreciated differently by every viewer, or in this case reader. Not everyone will like everything you write just bec..."
I agree, but if you're also a reader I bet you have read books that you disliked or even felt offended by, and I, as many others have mentioned here agree that paying for and reading a book entitles you to an opinion. What I think, is that as an author this kind of "public support" for a group that has been harassing readers can't be good for you and your product.
I wish you all the best, but personally I think you're hurting yourself more by taking a stand against the reviewer's community.


message 28: by Sharon (new)

Sharon Desruisseaux Caty wrote: "Sharon wrote: "Caty wrote: "With all due respect, this entry just reads like a tantrum. Art is appreciated differently by every viewer, or in this case reader. Not everyone will like everything you..."

Absolutely Caty! Thank you for your opinion!  I have read books that I do not like. Yet, I leave it at that. Moreover, I do believe in letting the author know constructively what I felt about it. It should be a positive experience. As a writer, I love to hear what people think. However, I sincerely believe that the bashing is uncalled for. I cannot stress enough that reading should be a good experience. It should not be followed with abuse directed at anyone. I love to keep in touch with the authors I read myself, as they have been wonderful. I keep in touch with my readers as well and value any advice they may offer. I just do not feel it is right when ANYONE is attacked for his or her opinion. As you see, I have not attacked anyone-yet I am trying to bring the attacks to light for people to be more aware of what is going on out there on this site. Writers, reviewers, AND readers have been wrongfully attacked to the point of giving up and backing off completely from this site. Thus, what should be a positive experience is ruined for all parties involved. That is what I am taking a stand on. If it makes me look horrible for wanting the abusive attacks to end against anyone, then I will take that chance. It is wrong to go after writers (there are quite a few on here that this has happened to, not just myself), to the point where they give up their dream of writing. It is wrong to go after reviewers and readers to the point where they no longer want to participate. By, all means they can hate me all they want to-I just want the positive back in reading, as it has gone astray lately and that is a very sad thing to me. This is not againt anyone- it is against the abuse, that is all. I just wanted to clarify. Thank you so much for your opinion :)


message 29: by Katy (new)

Katy Sugar wrote: "She apologized for that."

You got it! The problem I've seen over and over with this Badly Behaving Author/Badly Behaving Reviewer/Badly Behaving Goodreader witchhunt (and it's all witchhunts) is that someone finds some sort of comment somewhere and starts harping on it, and spreading it around. Even if the author or reviewer or random commenters has since removed it, or recanted and apologized. This is how they hope to provoke the author or reviewer or commenter into responding and is, how did someone up there put it? Shenanigans. Deliberately provocative. If the person under attack tries to step forward and say, "I took that down, I apologized, why are you bringing this up again?" it then turns into, "look out, they're attacking!" and they pile on like a bunch of football players taking down the football. It's fraught, overwrought, and usually over something that was a complete misunderstanding to begin with.

Not everyone who takes part in this is a bully. Some don't realize it's all a shenanigans and are honestly upset about the original situation, and don't realize it was long since resolved. I feel bad for these people, because they don't realize they're adding to the harmful and toxic environment deliberately being created by a few individuals.

Sharon, while you've made mistakes (we all have), I applaud you for taking a stand, and working to make your own space somewhat safe for us to express our opinions without having to constantly dread the next time we pop in that someone will have taken our words, meant to bring peace and understanding, and twisted them around in an attempt to make us look like we're trying to add to the problem. I applaud you for trying to be and become a better person.

Sugar, Sharon blocked most of the troublemakers, so they can't respond to your comments here. It's probably driving some of them crazy, but it's saving the rest of us a lot of grief. Thanks for your support.


message 30: by Sharon (new)

Sharon Desruisseaux Katy wrote: "Sugar wrote: "She apologized for that."

You got it! The problem I've seen over and over with this Badly Behaving Author/Badly Behaving Reviewer/Badly Behaving Goodreader witchhunt (and it's all w..."


Well said and thank you very much! It is starting to get better after blocking out those toxic comments. It is nice to have a constructive conversation on issues without being bombarded with hate once again. I hope this continues and more people will feel confident enough to express their views on a situation without the fear of it being twisted out of context out of malice. Cheers to all of you who want that positive experience between reader, writer and reviewer. :)


message 31: by Sharon (new)

Sharon Desruisseaux Derrick wrote: "It is MY review. I can write whatever I want as long as I stay within the guidelines set by GR.

Are you trying to take away my right to express myself?"


Wherever did you get that idea? Freedom of expression is absolutely valued. What I am against is the attacking and abuse directed at anyone as stated over and over again on this. There is no need for hostility and abuse directed at anyone. If you do not like a book-by all means that is fine. It is what it is. Yet, to go on a campaining to torment someone for any reason is wrong. It is sad that I have to keep stating this. Freedom of expression and opinion is one thing but dowright abuse is base and uncalled for. We are in a world full of offensive things. Fine. I personally chose to block it out and ignore it. My choice. There is no need to further such negativity. If you do not like something-fine, state it if you feel so moved to do so, and then move on.. Do you go out of your way to offend someone or verbally abuse them in your reviews? I should hope not. There is NO need for that. Just as people have the right of self expression, people also have the right of peace.


message 32: by Katy (new)

Katy Exactly, Derrick, what Sharon said. No one is saying you should not write a review saying you didn't enjoy a book, but it's the difference between, "I didn't like this book because..." and "This was absolute shite and the author should be shot for even writing it!" Personal attacks are uncalled for. That is all we're trying to say, and it really blows my mind that everyone thinks we're trying to censor negative reviews, when nothing could be farther from the truth! Authors value constructive criticism; it helps them do better with their next book and, in this age of e-books, they can even fix what's wrong in the existing one and update it!


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