Tuesday, 24 February 2009

The ups and downs of reviews

I'm pleased to say that my latest, Ecologic, is picking up a number of reviews, and the first three were really positive. So when the fourth arrived and it was so-so at best, it proved more than a little disappointing (especially when one of the positives was in the Sunday version of the same paper).

Mind you, I've seen elsewhere an author who received a stinking review of her novel as a hardback, then the same paper published a great review of it as a paperback. I suppose all this illustrates is the independence of the reviewers, and that's a good thing. We hardly want reviews to have to follow a set pattern. Yet it doesn't stop me wanting to make a small but effective Voodoo doll of my recent reviewer.

Is it better a bad review than no review at all? I'm not sure. But what I do know is there's a big 'rain on my parade' effect. I was feeling all rosy and happy after the good reviews, but just one bad one (quite possibly due to the writer having indigestion) seems to have washed out all the good.

Remind me again why I'm a writer?

2 comments:

  1. Wow, you really hit it on the head there. I've promised myself I'll only read "good" reviews, but then what my publisher calls a good review I might call a so-so or even bad one. And then again, what about those months (years) when no reviews come at all? I think counting too much on these things is a very slippery slope. I just keep reminding myself that all i can do is continue to put out there the best work I possibly can, and leave the rest of ti alone in the lap of the gods. But anyway, congrats on the good ones!

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  2. Sue - I'm too impatient to wait for the publisher to send reviews (I usually tell them about them), so I never know in advance if it's going to be a good one. Sigh.

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