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Good Reviewer/Bad Reviewer - Am I a Troll?

Posted on May 25, 2013 at 6:51 PM
I've been doing a lot of reading via the freebies at BookBub. On a rare occasion  I'll purchase one, but it has to have both a good cover and a great pitch. 

Unfortunately, I've found very few that I can finish and even fewer that I would recommend to another reader.  I've thought of writing reviews for them, but hate to be dishonest. I can't say they are great when they're not, yet I don't want to be a troll and crush someone's dreams of being a writer. It's a dilemma.

The greatest consistency I find among these books is that the author has published too soon. They all need work. From the basic plot line to the characterization to typos, grammatical errors, and poor formatting. Every single one I've read has a least two of the above mentioned.

I'm not great with grammar myself so if I notice the errors, I can only imagine what the Grammar Nazis think. 

One I read, actually had ten pages which were repeated twice in a row. I believe that is something an editor wouldn't miss if it had been professionally edited.

A lot of what I've read are common mistakes made by beginning writers. I know this because I've made them myself. I've made them, but didn't publish them.

Rather than turn off my future readers, I've chosen to wait, to put the manuscript away and re-edit it after I've forgotten about it. After I've fallen out of love with my own words. 

Russell Blake writes a great post about his reluctance to write reviews. You can check it out here.



Categories: Books in General, new novels, works in progress, kidney failure, transplants, Transplant tourism, china

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8 Comments

Reply Lesann
10:57 PM on May 25, 2013 
Since Bookbub features a mix of traditional and Indie published work, it can be a shock to realize that book you just set aside came from a mainstream publisher.
Reply Tammy
1:14 AM on May 26, 2013 
Lesann says...
Since Bookbub features a mix of traditional and Indie published work, it can be a shock to realize that book you just set aside came from a mainstream publisher.

Lesann,
This is true. There are some books from mainstream and major publishers on BookBub as well. I will make a point of downloading one I know to be published by one of the above and compare it with some I've read that have been self-published. Whether going the traditional or self-pubbing route, I think an author would want to put their best possible effort forth. I know you spend hour upon hour editing via various people including yourself, critique partners and professional which is why I don't find typos and plot errors in your work. I wish everyone would put forth that kind of effort. I want to be pulled into the book and live in that world while I'm reading and errors yank me out of it, leaving me frustrated and disappointed.
Reply Les
2:26 AM on June 8, 2013 
I think most writers do think their work is ready - which if you go Indie means you have to invest in the critical eyes of at least one editor. Personally, I try to make my manuscript the best I can do before I send it through critique, etc. But...not everyone thinks this is a necessary step. Those are usually the ones where "he slid the knife across his juggler and laughed as the blood sprayed." I just read that last night. I'm still having fun visualizing that juggler. lol
Reply Tammy
4:28 AM on June 8, 2013 
Les says...
I think most writers do think their work is ready - which if you go Indie means you have to invest in the critical eyes of at least one editor. Personally, I try to make my manuscript the best I can do before I send it through critique, etc. But...not everyone thinks this is a necessary step. Those are usually the ones where "he slid the knife across his juggler and laughed as the blood sprayed." I just read that last night. I'm still having fun visualizing that juggler. lol

I was reading something similar the other day and wondered how the author or editor didn't catch that kind of mistake. In the work you were reading, maybe he really was slicing up a juggler! Jugglers don't usually affect me that way, but mimes do.

I usually go over my work five to ten times before reading it at a critique group. I don't want to waste their time or mine.

When we did the workshop at Beaterville last year, I was actually editing mine while listening to the others read. I just didn't want to put something out into the universe that was less than my best. I did on that day, but normally I don't.
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