Gabrielle Bisset

Thursday, February 23, 2012

Blood Avenged at Kindle Spice and Other Thoughts

Blood Avenged is featured at Kindle Spice today, with Vasilije in all his glory there.  He does spice up the place, doesn't he? ;)  And here's another goody with the delicious vampire:  the cover of his print book.  I love it!!  Talina has knocked that ball out of the park with this one, hasn't she? 

On other fronts, there seems to have been some dust up at a paranormal blog I love in the last day or so.  Unfortunately, an author disliked a review and voiced her opinion about it.  I certainly understand the frustration of a review that isn't complimentary, but that kind of opinion needs to stay with friends over a decent amount of alcohol.  I have days when I read a review of one of my books and think, "WTF?  Did this person even read the book?"  Basic errors about the plot or the main characters make me think they've skimmed, at best, and spelling and grammar errors in a review that criticizes my writing are infuriating, to say the least.  But the reviewer never knows what I think.  Only my friends and editor do, and after we've hashed out what we really think (usually over too much beer), it's done.  I don't go back to reviewers who I believe don't do a good job.  Period.  There's no bitching and arguing.  I just take them off the list. 

The author who had a problem at this site yesterday should consider this method over the one she's chosen.  Just my opinion.

I'm on a number of author loops and have seen a rise in the animosity toward reviewers in the past few months.  I think the proliferation of book review blogs is actually hurting the better bloggers because there are some who just put up a blog and think they can attack at will.  Authors are naturally lumping all the bloggers together, and the bad ones are affecting how authors see all bloggers.  It's too bad for the ones who are thoughtful and careful with what the write, but I see it happening more and more. 

Finally, I was at Dear Author's site the other day (about something with my first publisher) and saw a discussion about indie authors padding their Amazon reviews with those of friends, fellow writers, and even reviews written by themselves in fake names.  I know of one author in particular who does this routinely, in addition to the one discussed at Dear Author.  The reviews aren't from reviewers, bloggers, or strangers but fellow writers and the writer herself.  Always 5 stars, they gush about how wonderful the book is, but I have to wonder why she feels the need to do this?  If you're selling well, why act like this? 

Indies who cheat the system don't help themselves or the indie movement at all.  Cheating never pays off in the long run.  (I sound like I'm talking to my students, but it's true.)  What you know or don't know and what you're good at or aren't good at always comes to light in the end.  Cheating just puts that day off a bit, but it's always going to come.  And it makes people who are skeptical about indie publishing in the first place feel that their dislike of it is justified when they find out an indie has been gaming the system.  Bad joujou for those authors. 

I'm off to do the home school thing and then write later this afternoon.  The details about the other Sons have been worked into Blood Betrayed and the end is ready.  Hope everyone has a good one!


Lisa said...

Thank you so much for saying this! I am much more hesitant these days to accept review requests that come directly from authors -- one too many comment and email attacks will make a reviewer wary.

I imagine that it's very difficult to read an unflattering review, but many authors manage. I have had very civil email exchanges with the authors of books I didn't love, sometimes addressing my concerns about the book, sometimes just thanking me for my honest opinion. And being honest is the most important thing -- if readers can't trust reviewers to be honest, they won't read the reviews and that removes a great way for readers to find new books and authors. It's in a writer's best interest for reviewers to be honest. If you want to know what sort of review you might get, check out the reviewer's website. Read a few of their reviews. Don't go in blind.

However, I disagree about this:

>Authors are naturally lumping all the bloggers together

I don't think it's natural at all! Not unless you want us to lump all authors together. :)

Gabrielle said...

Hi Lisa,

Thanks for stopping by! I appreciate your comments. Unfortunately, it is natural for humans to group people together. Reviewers do it all the time too. It's why comparisons to other authors and series happen in reviews. It's not a bad thing, per se, but in this case it does mean that bloggers are going to have to police themselves like authors do all the time. I don't associate with authors who behave like the one did over at Bitten by Paranormal Romance and I don't associate with authors who pad their reviews at Amazon. They're unprofessional and have no place in my professional world.

Thanks for continuing the conversation. :)

Have a great one!


Savannah Chase said...

There is a lot of bad stuff that goes on and it is not good..The stuff people do is mind blowing..Authors giving other authors bad reviews just to put them down, fake reviews and the list goes on..It is sad because people are not bothering to look at reviews anymore because they don't trust them.

Gabrielle said...

I so agree, Savannah. I've seen authors trying to sabotage other authors, and as I mentioned, I know about the fake reviews. And I think you're right--reviews are beginning to take on an air of being false.

Thanks for stopping by!

Megan@Riverina Romantics said...

New swag idea. Book covers!

As far as all the stuff going down on that blog that you mentioned this is not the first time that an author has attacked them. Once one flipped out about a 3 star rating. WTF? There is nothing wrong with a three!

Though I'm not an author I can easily imagine the hurt that can accompany a bad review. However, where in the world did common courtesy go? You (the author) went to them (the blog) not the other way around. What is it they say? If you can'y stand the heat get out of the kitchen? The author in this instance went all crazy on FB and everything. Untrue accusations where made. It was a mess.

Bloggers work really hard to write their reviews. I know I do. Granted, that review in particular was a tad too harsh for my taste but that doesn't make it any less true.

I think your method is sound Gabrielle. As you build your career one should feel out bloggers and find who you fit with best. Look at their work. See how they write.

From the bloggers standpoint all I can say is this. Have a clearly defined review policy. To avoid situations such as these we at Riverina Romantics will not post a review for a book that we couldn't give a 3 or more to. We only want to promote stuff that we like because there is just too much negativity out there. If an author can handle that then we're happy to work with them. They are always given the chance to self promote on our site if they want to.

Gabrielle said...

Hi Megan,

I'll have to see if there's some way to make cover flats like the NY pubs do for hardcovers. :)

I agree with your comments about both sides. I think the problem many authors have is that some reviews contain nothing but opinions on how the book makes someone feel. They're looking for a more objective review. If this trend continues, I fear the book blog isn't long for this business and the professional book review sites will be the only place authors turn. Then it will be quite hard to get a review because they'll be all bogged down.

But I'm reading more and more on the loops that authors are done with the review that merely states opinions without any knowledge or understanding of how plot, characters, and story work together.

It will be interesting to see how it all shakes out. I like your policy, though. It keeps the problems to a minimum, I'd guess. :)

Thanks for stopping by!