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Thread: Authors should really stop telling readers how to give reviews

  1. #801
    Shooting stars. lolchemist's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by HoneyBadger View Post
    They do a happy grin, if they're me, as it means people really, really want to read your (my) work, but then they (I) am of the school of thought that pirating does the author less harm than the public thinks.
    Yeah, I agree with that actually, I mean how different is it from borrowing it from the library anyway? If they want a physical copy, they still have to go out and buy it (or go steal it in person LOL!)

    Current WIP (YA Contemporary) - Book 1: 32,958 of 90,000 X Book 2: 40,359 of 90,000
    Current WIP (YA Fantasy) - Book 1: 68,055 of 75,000 x Book 2:
    10,512 of 75,000
    x Book 3:
    09,962 of 75,000 x Book 4:
    12,490 of 75,000

  2. #802
    Sometimes I creep myself out. AW Moderator Calla Lily's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by lolchemist View Post
    Not trying to go OT but just wondering, what does a person do once they find pirated copies of their books? I've always wondered about that.
    I send an email with the link to my editor, and she forwards it to the legal pit bulls.

    Quote Originally Posted by lolchemist View Post
    Yeah, I agree with that actually, I mean how different is it from borrowing it from the library anyway? If they want a physical copy, they still have to go out and buy it (or go steal it in person LOL!)
    Except that libraries BUY copies of my books, for which I will get a royalty. I use my library constantly. I love libraries. Love them.

    Book thieves are scum-sucking bastards who are stealing money directly from my pocket.

  3. #803
    They've been very bad, Mr Flibble Mr Flibble's Avatar
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    Depends on the author, the book, and where the book is being pirated.




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  4. #804
    Quote Originally Posted by lolchemist View Post
    What exactly are you trying to ask me?
    I'm asking why anyone should care if a writer's feelings get hurt by a negative comment about their book.

  5. #805
    Attends The School of AW Alitriona's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by lolchemist View Post
    Not trying to go OT but just wondering, what does a person do once they find pirated copies of their books? I've always wondered about that.
    I report them to my publisher if I come across them and they send whatever it is they send to request it's removed. Sadly, most of the time it's a case of they pop up somewhere else as quick as they are removed.

    One popular download site I contacted myself and requested to be put on an opt out list they keep. I'm glad to say they honored it and I've seen members reminded not to share my work when I checked back a few months later.

  6. #806
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    Quote Originally Posted by Amadan View Post
    I'm asking why anyone should care if a writer's feelings get hurt by a negative comment about their book.
    Okay so you misunderstood my comment then. My point wasn't that anyone should care about an author's precious little fee-fees. My point was that the guy was tactless for just sticking that comment there right underneath the author's thank you note.

    In that situation, she wasn't just a writer, she was also a fellow poster in the comments section and in my opinion, deserved a modicum of politeness. I AM giving him the benefit of the doubt that he didn't realize that she was there at the time of posting, but if he did, it was a dick move.

    AGAIN, not justifying at all her actions. She still should have not commented. Not even if he directly addressed her and went 'Hey Sue, I think your book sucks!'

    Current WIP (YA Contemporary) - Book 1: 32,958 of 90,000 X Book 2: 40,359 of 90,000
    Current WIP (YA Fantasy) - Book 1: 68,055 of 75,000 x Book 2:
    10,512 of 75,000
    x Book 3:
    09,962 of 75,000 x Book 4:
    12,490 of 75,000

  7. #807
    Queen of the Upmarket Bagladies HoneyBadger's Avatar
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    Well, she was in the wrong from the get-go. Responding to reviews AT ALL is bad form, for reasons others have said, but especially because readers NEED a safe place to say "this book is awful."

  8. #808
    Quote Originally Posted by lolchemist View Post
    Okay so you misunderstood my comment then. My point wasn't that anyone should care about an author's precious little fee-fees. My point was that the guy was tactless for just sticking that comment there right underneath the author's thank you note.

    But reviews, as have been mentioned, are for readers, not authors. It's fine (if not necessarily advisable) if an author wants to say "Thank you" for a review, but if we were to accept your point, then an author deciding to participate in a review thread could be read as a preemptive move to forestall any negative comments - after all, it would be tactless to say anything bad about a book while the author is right there reading it, right?

  9. #809
    Shooting stars. lolchemist's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by HoneyBadger View Post
    Well, she was in the wrong from the get-go. Responding to reviews AT ALL is bad form, for reasons others have said, but especially because readers NEED a safe place to say "this book is awful."
    I totally agree. I mean I found it weird that she was replying in the comments section in the first place, she probably should have just emailed them instead. I hate when authors violate that private space for readers with their presence.

    I had to put off writing a good review of a book on Amazon once because the author was commenting to everyone in the reviews and it just felt too uncomfortable for me. I reviewed the book a few months later and HE STILL COMMENTED like hours later. He basically just said thank you but still I was just all clenched up like "OH GOD THIS FEELS TOO INAPPROPRIATE!"

    But it's okay to say that the guy was a bit rude too right? I mean I'm totally on his side but I feel like even if it was a book I hated I'd feel so weird about saying "your book is awful" right underneath an author's comment like that. I'd at least try to word it better, like "I didn't like it because..."

    Current WIP (YA Contemporary) - Book 1: 32,958 of 90,000 X Book 2: 40,359 of 90,000
    Current WIP (YA Fantasy) - Book 1: 68,055 of 75,000 x Book 2:
    10,512 of 75,000
    x Book 3:
    09,962 of 75,000 x Book 4:
    12,490 of 75,000

  10. #810
    Queen of the Upmarket Bagladies HoneyBadger's Avatar
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    My threshold for rude is pretty high, so, no. His first comment was really very mellow. I thought he was clearly the more professional, rational, and respectful of the two of them throughout the exchange, by a long shot.

  11. #811
    Whatever I did, I didn't do it. Phaeal's Avatar
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    This reminds me of a story Anne Lamott tells in Bird by Bird. She's teaching a workshop, and a young guy gets up to read a story riddled with problems. Most of the workshop members bend over backwards to find things to praise. But one member stands up and delivers a cri de coeur: "Do you people really think there's ANYTHING good about this?" Her whole literary worldview was reeling!

    Maybe that's how the offending commenter felt: If THIS is good, then I must be mad, quite mad, but no! No, I'm not! This cannot stand unchallenged!

    And which of us hasn't felt that way from time to time?

    Anywho. Always the same lesson. Author, go buy a punching bag which you can pwn until the urge to respond to any review or (now) any review comment subsides.
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  12. #812
    OUTCAST is out now!!!! Toothpaste's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by bearilou View Post
    As is evident by Ms. Dent showing up here at AW in a thread that is 30+ pages long that mentions her by name, when her last post here in AW was back in September of 2011.
    Just thought I should mention this too, so people have the info:

    When you run a blog or website you usually have a program that tracks the statistics of who is coming to your site. The information you get is not only who, but where they came from, what links on your site they click etc. It's really useful in making your blog get more traffic, if you can tell the kind of posts people gravitate to and where they tend to come from.

    It is actually likely that the second someone posted a link to her blog post, the author noticed all this traffic coming from this thread, from that specific post in this thread. All she had to do was click on the link in her stats and find this discussion.

    I think this is important to know, and that it's very likely most authors etc to whose blogs we link in threads like these, etc, are likely aware of us doing so. And thus why respect your fellow writer extends beyond just AW.

    You never know who might be watching.

  13. #813
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    Quote Originally Posted by Amadan View Post
    But reviews, as have been mentioned, are for readers, not authors. It's fine (if not necessarily advisable) if an author wants to say "Thank you" for a review, but if we were to accept your point, then an author deciding to participate in a review thread could be read as a preemptive move to forestall any negative comments - after all, it would be tactless to say anything bad about a book while the author is right there reading it, right?
    No. And I'm kind of grossed out that you're even talking like that, seriously. I know we all love to defend the reviewers here and I'm a writer of nasty reviews myself but please don't be blind to the fact that he COULD have been more polite and still have gotten the message across, yes, because SHE WAS RIGHT THERE and why hurt a person's feelings when you don't have to? (This is all asssuming that he knew she was there.)

    AGAIN, I'm not dictating how people should write reviews in general, in fact I love snarky reviews. But I'm not talking about a "review" at all! I'm talking about a very specific incident: a comment in a comments section written directly underneath the comment of an author which the author will probably see and be hurt by.

    I see that in your definition, his comment is considered a "review" to which the common law of "reviews are for readers" applies. I think you're really stretching it there. I think the point you made about "then an author deciding to participate in a review thread could be read as a preemptive move to forestall any negative comments" is a lot more powerful. I DO think it was inappropriate for her to show herself in the comments section like that, she should have emailed the website privately.

    And I'm really leaning towards the idea that the guy had no clue that she had replied before he commented, which would absolve him of the specific rudeness I'm accusing him of and make her presence there even more inappropriate and awkward, because look at all the drama she caused.

    Authors really need handlers nowadays...

    Current WIP (YA Contemporary) - Book 1: 32,958 of 90,000 X Book 2: 40,359 of 90,000
    Current WIP (YA Fantasy) - Book 1: 68,055 of 75,000 x Book 2:
    10,512 of 75,000
    x Book 3:
    09,962 of 75,000 x Book 4:
    12,490 of 75,000

  14. #814
    Shooting stars. lolchemist's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by HoneyBadger View Post
    My threshold for rude is pretty high, so, no. His first comment was really very mellow. I thought he was clearly the more professional, rational, and respectful of the two of them throughout the exchange, by a long shot.
    I know! It's fascinating to see her like spiraling out of control while he's just trying to be professional and respectful!

    I don't know, re-reading the thread for the second time now, I really am thinking he just didn't notice that she was the first commenter, which kind of makes my "OMG SO ROOOD!" reaction kind of moot!

    Current WIP (YA Contemporary) - Book 1: 32,958 of 90,000 X Book 2: 40,359 of 90,000
    Current WIP (YA Fantasy) - Book 1: 68,055 of 75,000 x Book 2:
    10,512 of 75,000
    x Book 3:
    09,962 of 75,000 x Book 4:
    12,490 of 75,000

  15. #815
    DenturePunk writer bearilou's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Toothpaste View Post
    Just thought I should mention this too, so people have the info:

    When you run a blog or website you usually have a program that tracks the statistics of who is coming to your site. The information you get is not only who, but where they came from, what links on your site they click etc. It's really useful in making your blog get more traffic, if you can tell the kind of posts people gravitate to and where they tend to come from.

    It is actually likely that the second someone posted a link to her blog post, the author noticed all this traffic coming from this thread, from that specific post in this thread. All she had to do was click on the link in her stats and find this discussion.

    I think this is important to know, and that it's very likely most authors etc to whose blogs we link in threads like these, etc, are likely aware of us doing so. And thus why respect your fellow writer extends beyond just AW.

    You never know who might be watching.
    Mmm. Good point and one I hadn't considered. Thank you.

    You're right, of course, about the RYFW being beyond walls of AW.
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  16. #816
    Quote Originally Posted by lolchemist View Post
    No. And I'm kind of grossed out that you're even talking like that, seriously. I know we all love to defend the reviewers here and I'm a writer of nasty reviews myself but please don't be blind to the fact that he COULD have been more polite and still have gotten the message across, yes, because SHE WAS RIGHT THERE and why hurt a person's feelings when you don't have to? (This is all asssuming that he knew she was there.)
    He wasn't impolite.

    So you're saying it would be okay to say "I thought this book was pretty awful" as long as the author isn't there, but if the author is in the thread, then you should soften your opinion?

    That's exactly what I mean when I say the author's presence is irrelevant. Authors shouldn't have an expectation that if they're going to post in a review thread that suddenly all criticism will be softened.

    I fail to see what "grosses you out" about that.

    I see that in your definition, his comment is considered a "review" to which the common law of "reviews are for readers" applies.
    It was a comment in a discussion thread about a review. So yes, "reviews are for readers" applies.

    Let's say I post a snarky, negative review, which is cool according to you. But then the author shows up and says "Thanks for the review." And now, it would be rude and hurtful for anyone to post after the author, "Hey, I agree with your review, this book was shit"?

  17. #817
    Shooting stars. lolchemist's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Amadan View Post
    He wasn't impolite. To you he wasn't, to me he was, (if he did it on purpose knowing she was there blah blah.)

    So you're saying it would be okay to say "I thought this book was pretty awful" as long as the author isn't there, but if the author is in the thread, then you should soften your opinion? Not the opinion itself, just how you state it.

    That's exactly what I mean when I say the author's presence is irrelevant. Authors shouldn't have an expectation that if they're going to post in a review thread that suddenly all criticism will be softened. They shouldn't expect it, to be sure. Politeness is a rare commodity these days.

    I fail to see what "grosses you out" about that.
    What grossed me out is that I'm saying 'apple' and you're saying 'By apple, you mean all fruit ever!'


    It was a comment in a discussion thread about a review. So yes, "reviews are for readers" applies. A comment is still not a review.

    Let's say I post a snarky, negative review, which is cool according to you. But then the author shows up and says "Thanks for the review." And now, it would be rude and hurtful for anyone to post after the author, "Hey, I agree with your review, this book was shit"? Yes it would.
    I think you and I are just not agreeing on a lot of definitions here and our personal opinions are really not matching up so this discussion is getting pretty repetitive. I'd rather not continue it if it's okay with you.

    Agree to disagree?

    Current WIP (YA Contemporary) - Book 1: 32,958 of 90,000 X Book 2: 40,359 of 90,000
    Current WIP (YA Fantasy) - Book 1: 68,055 of 75,000 x Book 2:
    10,512 of 75,000
    x Book 3:
    09,962 of 75,000 x Book 4:
    12,490 of 75,000

  18. #818
    Quote Originally Posted by lolchemist View Post
    I think you and I are just not agreeing on a lot of definitions here
    No, we're disagreeing about a fundamental principle here, namely this:

    Let's say I post a snarky, negative review, which is cool according to you. But then the author shows up and says "Thanks for the review." And now, it would be rude and hurtful for anyone to post after the author, "Hey, I agree with your review, this book was shit"? Yes it would.
    That seems to be where we have an irreconcilable difference of opinion.

  19. #819
    Shooting stars. lolchemist's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Amadan View Post
    No, we're disagreeing about a fundamental principle here, namely this:



    That seems to be where we have an irreconcilable difference of opinion.
    And I'm going to keep my opinion and you're going to keep yours. So I think we're done here.

    Current WIP (YA Contemporary) - Book 1: 32,958 of 90,000 X Book 2: 40,359 of 90,000
    Current WIP (YA Fantasy) - Book 1: 68,055 of 75,000 x Book 2:
    10,512 of 75,000
    x Book 3:
    09,962 of 75,000 x Book 4:
    12,490 of 75,000

  20. #820
    Whatever I did, I didn't do it. Phaeal's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by lolchemist View Post
    I DO think it was inappropriate for her to show herself in the comments section like that, she should have emailed the website privately.
    I agree. If you're moved to thank a reviewer, you might better do it with a private message or email. That way you don't come across as a needy or potentially butt-hurt lurker.
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  21. #821
    Boldly going nowhere in particular. Jess Haines's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by lolchemist View Post
    Yeah, I agree with that actually, I mean how different is it from borrowing it from the library anyway? If they want a physical copy, they still have to go out and buy it (or go steal it in person LOL!)
    The difference is that the library paid for the copy and will sometimes buy more if the copy they have is worn out and there is demand for the book.

    Wrote a long, rambly blog post on my thoughts about piracy of my books a while back.

    And on the current subject, it's my opinion that reviews are for readers. Authors can be readers and have their own opinions about books, and they can thank reviewers for taking the time to review their work, but they should never, ever engage the reviewer in a pissing contest about their own work. Reviews are not written for the author, they are written for fellow readers, so the author should never argue with someone about their opinion lest they bring about another Greek Seaman incident.
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  22. #822
    crazy mean SuperModerator Old Hack's Avatar
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    Not only do libraries pay for the books they lend out to readers, authors earn money each time their books are borrowed via PLR. So no, e-book piracy isn't at all the same as borrowing a book from a library.

  23. #823
    Cultus Gopherus MacAllister SuperModerator Medievalist's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Old Hack View Post
    Not only do libraries pay for the books they lend out to readers, authors earn money each time their books are borrowed via PLR. So no, e-book piracy isn't at all the same as borrowing a book from a library.
    Alas, we do not have anything like PLR in the U. S.

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  24. #824
    Your Genial Uncle Absolute Sage James D. Macdonald's Avatar
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    And everyone pays for libraries. They're a line item in the town budget, paid for by tax money, that everyone pays even if they never go to the library in their lives.

  25. #825
    Shooting stars. lolchemist's Avatar
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    Yeah, you're all making great points. I guess comparing unauthorized internet lending with library lending is a bit too simplistic.

    What is PLR?

    ETA: nevermind

    Current WIP (YA Contemporary) - Book 1: 32,958 of 90,000 X Book 2: 40,359 of 90,000
    Current WIP (YA Fantasy) - Book 1: 68,055 of 75,000 x Book 2:
    10,512 of 75,000
    x Book 3:
    09,962 of 75,000 x Book 4:
    12,490 of 75,000

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