Tuesday, April 11, 2017

Thank You Authors!

Why I Write Reviews and Blog About Them

On Monday evening, I met with a group of lovely ladies from Sigma Omega of the Florida Keys, a chapter of the social sorority Beta Sigma Phi.  The topic of discussion was "Why I Write Reviews and Blog About Them".  It was a fun night!  These ladies were outstanding!  

First of all, I want to thank the many authors who graciously donated signed copies of their books and some fabulous swag.  The ladies receiving the books and treats were most appreciative.... and I was overwhelmed at your generosity.  Thank you, thank you, thank you to all of you, especially to:

Kerry Adrienne – Pursuing the Bear, Waking the Bear, Starstruck Holidays, All Mine, Auld Lang Syne (ebook)
Pamela Atherstone - …Footprints in the Wind
Michael Bowler – A Matter of Time
Lilly Robbins Brock – Wooden Boats & Iron Men, Ever a Soldier
Cyril Bursell – Growing Houseplants for the Beginner Enthusiast
Verna Clay – Abby: Mail Order Bride (paperback and audible book), Somewhere by the Sea, Healing Woman of Red Rock, Dream Kisses (audible book), Cry of the West: Hallie (audible book)
Dermot Davis – Brain: The Man Who Wrote the Book That Changed the World
Mary Firman – Deadly Pleasures
Debbie N. Goldberg – Are you Ready to Listen?-God, Creating a Life Worth Living
Shanna Hatfield – Crumpets and Cowpies, Aundy, Garden of the Heart
Anne Rothman-Hicks and Kenneth Hicks – Things are Not What They Seem, Stone Faces, Weave a Murderous Web
Jamie Jo Hoang – Blue Sun, Yellow Sky
Julie Hodgson – All You Need is Love and a Big Handbag (paperback and audio), The Gift
Angela Hoke – Whisper of Smoke
Marie Jones – Into the Shadows
Jackie Kingon – Chocolate Chocolate Moons, Sherlock Mars
Loraine M.L.M. – Sequence   
Angie Martin - Conduit
Michael Mucci – A Season to Kill
Beverly Nault – Fresh Start Summer
Judith Newton – Tasting Home, Oink
Susan A. Royal – In My Own Shadow (ebook), From Now On (ebook), It’s About Time (ebook)
Kim Turner – Sawyer’s Rose
Jamie A. Waters – The Two Towers, Shadow of the Coalition
Rochelle Weber – Rock Bound, Rock Crazy, Thin Person Inside
Dawn Kopman Whidden – A Child is Torn
Sherban Young – Fleeting Memory

I have been an avid reader most of my life and during that time I have had the opportunity to meet numerous authors.  In today's world of Indie authors, one of their biggest complaints is how difficult it is to get reviews.  The success of many books depends on the number of reviews they get.  And one poorly written critical review can absolutely crush an author.  Now I'm not saying that all reviews should be positive, but come on now!  At least be kind about it!  A review can tell an author where they are falling short without destroying them.  Even in the worst of books, I generally look for at least one redeeming factor.  The last thing I want is for an author to give up.  I would much rather give them a boost upward and help them fix the problem.

Here at The Novel Lady, we receive numerous requests to review books.  We try to be fair.  There are some genre's that I don't particularly enjoy, but I don't want that to influence my rating.  Janna and I have a pretty good system in place since we both have our preferred genres. I won't read some of the more edge stuff and that's what she reviews. In return, there are some genres that don't interest her, and I review those. If someone submits a review request and neither of us can get through the first fifty pages, we politely decline.

All that being said, we don't always post positive reviews. Some of our reviews are negative. And yes, Janna can be a bit snarky at times.  But she really, really TRIES to be nice.  Sometimes it's just not within her.

So do you want to know what really bugs us?  What books we prefer NOT to read?  Here's a list Janna compiled:

If your book contains any of the following, chances are that we will not read or review your work:

Extensive spelling or grammatical errors. Please make sure your book has been professionally edited. (Professionally edited does NOT mean that your spouse, sister, brother, mother, or second cousin looked over your manuscript. These people will lie to you and say that your writing is brilliant and you're the next J.K. Rowling. They're supposed to do that. That's the meaning of family. Don't believe me? Just ask them how your butt looks in those pants.)

Anything about thirteen year old girls. While we enjoy Young Adult novels, we prefer older works that are aimed more toward late teens and New Adults -- and besides, we don't particularly like thirteen year old girls. I'm not sure anyone really does -- even other thirteen year old girls.

Coming-of-age books. See above. Also, I'm including boys in that too. Just keep all your prepubescent kiddies out of my review pool, please.

Erotica without some semblance of a plot or story line. I like a little story with my sex, please. However, if you send me a bottle of my favorite wine, I might reconsider this.

Personal memoirs (unless it's someone famous). I won't read it, but Scherry might. It's not likely though. Maybe for two bottles of wine--- nah, nevermind. Not even then.

Non-fiction or poetry. Once again, I won't read it... but Scherry might under very rare circumstances.... you know, if she's having trouble sleeping or gets a wild hair. She's been known to read non-fiction on occasion.

Books that begin with a dream sequence or a girl picking berries in the forest. If you don't know what I'm talking about, count yourself lucky. Heck... if there's a girl picking berries in the forest in any part of your book, just... stop. I hope your character chokes on those berries.

Long prologues. I hate them. I really, really hate them. I want to just get to the story. If you have to give me an infodump before the book even starts, I'm probably going to hate your book. I won't be nice about it either.

Like I said... Janna gets a bit snarky sometimes.

#WritingReviews, #BookReviews, #WhatIMightDoForWine


Post a Comment


The Novel Lady Published @ 2014 by Ipietoon