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Opinions > Censoring Negative Reviews

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message 1: by Joyzi, loves the pedo bear (new)

Joyzi (jOiT) | 855 comments Mod
I recently read Becca Fitzpatrick's blog here's the link:

Becca was the author of Hush Hush Series, it was a paranormal YA series about fallen angels and she wrote a blog about a writing tip which was to BE NICE in writing reviews and to please as much as possible just write reviews about the books you love or make your review constructive if you don't like the book.

What's your opinion about it? Should we just write reviews about the books we love? Should we be ALWAYS NICE in writing reviews?

I just find the blog confusing and it disturbed me a bit. So I just want to know what's your opinions about it.

message 2: by Gabby (new)

Gabby (gab_lovesbooks) | 449 comments hmmmm.. i think i'll disagree. Me personally i really write down what i feel about the book maybe in a way i do forget my "manners" (lol) in writing down some reviews of the books that i don't really like. IMO mean reviews will serve as a medium for an author to know what to improve on his/her writing skills

but maybe as an author that will publish a book you must be ready for the criticisms that you will receive cause you can never please anyone and each and everyone of us has different perceptions on what we like and don't like.

message 3: by Janus (new)

Janus the Erudite Artist (jveruditeartist) | 52 comments I think her blog particularly pertained to “aspiring authors”. She’s just giving advice that when an aspiring author is starting to enter in publishing, fellow authors will criticize your work, may it be good or bad.

Let’s look at it in a different yet somehow reflecting scenario. Imagine yourself trying to get a job after graduating. Before you graduated, let’s say you and your friends are hanging out at a certain place and you started talking about companies you’d wish to be working for. One specific company was in your topic and you didn’t like this company, so you start to give negative assessments towards it, not knowing that the HR of that company is seating at the seat behind you. So after you graduated, you’re scheduled for an interview with a company you find suitable, then you find the HR who overheard you months ago talking badly about the company she works for (let’s imagine it’s a diverse company so she’s the HR of it entirely and dispatches employees over different offices or whatever, anyway I know you get the picture) will be your interviewer. Of course, you have no idea about it still she specifically remembers you, what do you think would be your impression towards you on that matter?

Given Becca Fitzpatrick’s scenario, it would be awkward wouldn’t it? And with my given example, if you knew the situation the HR was in, and you eventually don’t get hired at that company or if you do, she assigns you in the company you dissed, you’d think she was out for revenge or something even if it’s not what she intended.

I guess what Fitzpatrick is trying to say is, everyone has freedom to speak his or her own mind but of course you have to be tactful; be more courteous and sensitive. There’s a line between giving conceptual criticism that would eventually help an author to grow in his or her writing, and simply trashing about it without thought just because you didn’t like it. Put yourself in the shoes of that particular author you just lashed at, yes they know there will be negative reactions towards their books, yet it still is hurtful to read something awful but it would be relieving to see that the disparagement contains things that they hadn’t realized when they were writing that book and maybe that would help them improve on their next book.

Anyway, that’s how I understand it so that that. ^_^

message 4: by Joyzi, loves the pedo bear (new)

Joyzi (jOiT) | 855 comments Mod
I think this is a topic which has a lot of gray areas, it depends on how you view it. I still found the blog weird since she's an author and she's telling things like that. Post good reviews and be nice when you post a negative one.

I still think this is like a propaganda because minimizing negative reviews will be an author's advantage. I still think that readers have always the prerogative to say something about the book she is reviewing be it good or bad and it just a matter of respecting it.

There's no right or wrong opinion even if it's a negative one and to say things like don't post a negative review since maybe one day it will go back to you through Karma. I was like huh?

message 5: by Bookrazy-Koi (new)

Bookrazy-Koi (Bookrazy) | 34 comments i think when reviewing a book, you should totally be your self and not hold anything out. If a person only wants to read good things about his or her book then why put it up for review???

what should change is how people view every review... authors (aspiring or not) should learn how to accept any criticism as constructive... because at the end of the day, it won't be the people commenting that's going to have to go sit in front of an author's computer and write the story that occurs in the author's mind... and what matters is that as a writer, you don't sell-out your beliefs or your views regardless of what people say about your book...


I agree that no matter how negative a review have to find a way to be tactful and be prudent about it.


message 6: by Joyzi, loves the pedo bear (new)

Joyzi (jOiT) | 855 comments Mod
Just want to share these articles guys, I found them more reasonable than Becca's post.

message 7: by Janus (new)

Janus the Erudite Artist (jveruditeartist) | 52 comments Vinaya and Becca actually have similar thoughts on their blog post. I guess you agree more to Vinaya because she has a better way of explaining things in a way that you can relate more to, unlike with Becca's you did say you found it confusing. But if you look at it more closely, they're actually saying the same thing, only Vinaya of course had the better hand.

I do like Lauren DeStefano's post though, very meaningful and true. ^^

Mistress   ~ ♠ Mistral's Kiss ♠ ~ (Mist) (mistress) | 2 comments I think the Becca's referring to published authors or wannabe published authors. and in that light it seems like pretty bare bones/common logic advice. for someone interested in pursuing such.

That's one of the major reasons I ignore author endorsements or reviews of fellow authors. To a very large extent once someone gets published they're no longer a impartial reader IMO but a product/a brand.

Personally though as a reader with a capital 'R' lol, I'm all about full disclosure good, bad, and indifferent when I review books. IMO anything less cheapens the connection possible with other readers. = )

message 9: by Joyzi, loves the pedo bear (new)

Joyzi (jOiT) | 855 comments Mod
@Mistress yeah they say that authors can't dislike someone's work, I think it is true with Maggie Stiefvater who posted only 5 star reviews in goodreads.

I remember I encounter and read a blog by Jeanine Frost and she tells about her disappointment with people saying that when she likes a book and give a positive review some will say she just like it because of her job or she is paid to do so and while when she says that she doesn't like a book some will say she doesn't like it because she's jealous or maybe she hate the author. They always find malice when an author review a book.

message 10: by Joyzi, loves the pedo bear (last edited Feb 26, 2011 12:50AM) (new)

Joyzi (jOiT) | 855 comments Mod
@Janus idk maybe I just don't like Becca's post because there's something ridiculous and wrong about it. I agree with a user here in goodreads her name is Cory, I also felt that the post is threatening those aspiring new authors to not post negative reviews because you might not get publish simply because you hate a popular author's work.

message 11: by Sarah (new)

Sarah (sarahbotbonkers) | 333 comments I think what she's trying to say in her blog was about being humble and that publishing is a small world so you might be as well tactful and be nice. And she cited giving negative reviews as an example.

But she did lost her point along the way. A negative review is still a negative review. No matter how you sugarcoat it or how you are sorry that what you are writing in your review is not benefitial to the author, at the end of the day, it's still a negative review.

And I disagree when she says we should only talk about books we love because we read a book not knowing whether we like it or not. We pick a book and read it and decide whether it is good or bad. And it's up to us whether we share our opinion about the book or not. Most of us would, because most people want to hear it.

And if we did write a scathing review and didn't mean it to hurt or bash the author in any way, then karma will not have any part on this because we just do it to be honest and say what we wanna say.

But I do agree that respect and politeness must not be forgotten. So.

message 12: by Joyzi, loves the pedo bear (new)

Joyzi (jOiT) | 855 comments Mod
@Sarah I agree somehow the post has a message but still there's something wrong with it and how she states it:

First: Don't post negative review especially if you're an aspiring author because the author might have read that review. And when the day comes when you met each other since the publishing world is small that author might take a revenge on you or simply won't help you since you hated her work and you post a negative review. (Karma, karma, karma)

Second: Post only good reviews and only talk about books you love (just like what Maggie Stiefvater did on goodreads).

But just imagine if we follow this "Be nice" rule wherein will only have 5 star reviews because people just want to be nice and all. And it would be like some kind of dystopian novel. (Don't post negative review, be nice, be nice, be nice.)

message 13: by Sarah (new)

Sarah (sarahbotbonkers) | 333 comments @Joyzi: Goodreads being dystopian is a nice way of putting it. :) I hate to think that she's (Fitzpatrick) being partial and all but that's the way it looked to me. We should never hold a personal grudge on someone just because they didn't like our book. She said she had forgotten about it but when she turned her back and said no (in which i think she had every right) that only means she's not over it. And that's not karma. That's biasness and sourgraping.

I like to think that in a world of books and reviews, there is no such rule as Be Nice. Even the books that made it big and are well-loved, suffered from honest reviews too.

message 14: by Janus (new)

Janus the Erudite Artist (jveruditeartist) | 52 comments @Joyzi: I guess she doesn't know how to explain herself in a better expounded way. and her words were a bit bounded. Maybe she should've said her advice in a way that really sounds like an advice other than something that sounds like a warning.

message 15: by Joyzi, loves the pedo bear (last edited Feb 26, 2011 05:09AM) (new)

Joyzi (jOiT) | 855 comments Mod
@Sarah and Janus it's funny though a friend of mine called her the YA Mafia, that post was just a bad move IMO, first she should accept criticisms, it's part of an author's life since their books are written for public domain. They shouldn't expect that everyone would like their work. And she just sounded a creep who stalked reviewers who wrote negative reviews of her books. Like she care to know the author of that scathing review and she also did remember that author when she was presented to her by the publisher.

message 16: by Sun (new)

Sun (the one that glows in the dark, of course) (sun39) | 11 comments Mean reviews. Goody-two-shoes review.

I think that there needs to be some mean to tell people who were interested in reading the book that was reviewed. I, for one, read reviews of a book before deciding to read it.

And some of them have particularly mean reviews and when I say mean, I mean it. The author was criticized so badly that I couldn't help sympathizing and wishing I was there when he/she read them so I can pat her shoulder and cheer him/her up.

During those few times that I ignored the mean reviews and proceeded to read the book all the same, I was quite disappointed most of the time and couldn't help agreeing to those mean reviews.

Sometimes I wondered if reading these reviews set such a high expectation on the book to live up to its hype. Back when I was young and free, when I didn't even know the career of book reviewers exist, I used to read so many books and love them just the same and appreciate them just as much as I appreciate the author's efforts to write a book. When I compared myself between those carefree days when I loved books simply for being books and these days when I choose books because it had good reviews, I felt sad sometimes. Those days are over and now I have a much harder time to pick a book that I would really like and would even spend the few minutes of my now very busy life to read the books.

Still, maybe we should give new authors a chance, you know. Their art might be million dollars a hundred years from now.

So, that's my opinion. It's nothing really deep and does not have much detail on publishers and it barely skims the surface of the topic but that's what I thought.

Good books are just hard to come by these days.

message 17: by Sarah (new)

Sarah (sarahbotbonkers) | 333 comments @Sun: I think that if reading reviews before actually reading the book does that to you, then I guess you should not read reviews first. I mean I had the same problems before when I read a review first and the reviewer does not like the book. That's why I made it a rule to read reviews after so I will not have any early bias or judgment about the book. I'm not saying you have to follow me but that's what I do and it kinda helps with the expectation problems :) I hope it helps you too.

message 18: by Sarah (last edited Apr 01, 2011 10:16PM) (new)

Sarah (sarahbotbonkers) | 333 comments @Joyzi: YA Mafia, I think that's a bit harsh. Haha. Maybe she just had a bad case of stalking like you said. I think the negative review really did hit her bad. I wonder what was the review about.

message 19: by Joyzi, loves the pedo bear (new)

Joyzi (jOiT) | 855 comments Mod
@Sun I sometimes read review first and what I always do is read a good review with a 5 star rating and read a negative review with a 1 star rating, sometimes reviews helps sometimes not. I have a feeling that readers have different opinions so it will be really hard to decide just by reading reviews.

However reviews are still helpful since it will give you an idea what's the book is about, what's good and bad about it and it opens discussions.

message 20: by Joyzi, loves the pedo bear (new)

Joyzi (jOiT) | 855 comments Mod
@Sarah I don't know too but maybe I'm thinking authors should think of the negative reviews as positive and maybe they would know what doesn't work for the other readers.

message 21: by Janus (new)

Janus the Erudite Artist (jveruditeartist) | 52 comments I went back to this topic after reading this from Julie Kagawa's blog. And this is why I oh so dear love her so much. Read and I know many will agree! Authors and Negative Reviews

message 22: by Joyzi, loves the pedo bear (new)

Joyzi (jOiT) | 855 comments Mod
wow *applause* I think Julie Kagawa is right on the spot when you check here in Goodreads even the great books has 1 to 2 star ratings like To Kill A Mockingbird even the Bible.

message 23: by Janus (new)

Janus the Erudite Artist (jveruditeartist) | 52 comments Yea, you really can't please everyone...

message 24: by Sarah (new)

Sarah (sarahbotbonkers) | 333 comments wow! Julie Kagawa is right on track. I think I am going to read her books now. Haha

message 25: by Joyzi, loves the pedo bear (new)

Joyzi (jOiT) | 855 comments Mod
@Sarah I love the Iron Fey Series, simply addicting ^^

message 26: by C Joy (new)

C Joy (yurioujo) | 6 comments Joyzi (littlemissya) wrote: "I recently read Becca Fitzpatrick's blog here's the link:

Becca was the author of Hush Hush Series, it was a paranormal YA series about fallen a..."

*raises hand* I encountered this thread only now...I've been buried in books the whole March so here are my thoughts (I didn't read the blog though, Joyzi summed it up)

I'm not ashamed to say I'm one of those who wrote negatively about the book (Hush, Hush). I didn't do it as a personal attack, but as what I really thought of the story and its elements. I mean, it was really given the hype and I wasn't one of those who saw what the big deal is.

I understand about respect, I mentioned that I appreciate the author's efforts because one doesn't just write a full-length novel in a matter of say...days? I know it takes hard work, dedication, moral support and all that, but an author can't really control those bashers, but she can control her reaction to it.

message 27: by Joyzi, loves the pedo bear (new)

Joyzi (jOiT) | 855 comments Mod
You should read the whole blog, just saying. The biggest thing that disturbed me about it is that there is this new author, and I think the new author and Becca Fitzpatrick are on the same publishing company.

Becca's publisher gave her the new author's book draft for her to read but when Becca realized that this new author was one of the reviewers who gave a scathing review on Hush Hush, she didn't bother to read it.

And she advised aspiring authors to write nice reviews because you wont know when Karma would strike.

message 28: by C Joy (new)

C Joy (yurioujo) | 6 comments She has a point there, I'm a believer in Karma. Her blog was somewhat contradicting when she said "I hope I'm not that petty". Given that she has her own reasons and to her they're justified in not reading the up and coming author's manuscript.

I do give negative reviews but I always say it didn't work for me. She was rather unprofessional about it, could be she has preconceived notions but who can blame her? At the same time, she admitted to being "afraid" of "liking" it.

I'd like to give it a rest, suffice it to say that I liked her imagination and concepts in Hush, Hush and it really was promising, but unless she writes in another genre, I won't read any of her other works.

message 29: by Joyzi, loves the pedo bear (new)

Joyzi (jOiT) | 855 comments Mod
My head aches when I read Crescendo and this is way way before I encountered this blog. And yeah I'll not read any of her work, it just got worse and worse

message 30: by C Joy (new)

C Joy (yurioujo) | 6 comments Joyzi (littlemissya) wrote: "My head aches when I read Crescendo and this is way way before I encountered this blog. And yeah I'll not read any of her work, it just got worse and worse"

I admire your fortitude...yeah that's the right word. The first one didn't deserve an encore and you still went ahead and read the second one LOL

message 31: by Joyzi, loves the pedo bear (new)

Joyzi (jOiT) | 855 comments Mod
yeah IDK I felt like I was rereading Twilight, so I think it must be better to stop with the second one

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