Excellent episode, everybody. As a reviewer who operates under my real name, I've been curious to see how this all plays out. I think the simple fact is that some trolls will troll and some authors will overreact and lash out, but there's no reason to stop doing what we're doing as long as we, I heard it said, own our shit. I own up to everything I write. Even the occasional cheeky squick Kevin surprisingly allows me to get away with at Deconstructing Moya
Kevin, I'll be honest, I thought it was funny that you admitted being told that SMeyer blurbed Warm Bodies turned you off the book, and then being told Simon Pegg did too turned you back on, and later on in the show your position was that blurbs don't have any real influence.
The blurb discussion did remind me of a scene in a recent Castle episode where the main character, a famous writer, dismissively comes up with a generic blurb for a book he's been sent to review. Also on my mind as I listened, the Doris Day film Please Don't Eat the Daisies, in which a play critic loses track of his integrity in favour of the kind of snarkbaiting of which Cleo was accused.
I expect the return of Dayna to be like Dark Galadriel in LOTR, all shall love her and despair.
To be fair, my position was that books I read don't really have blurbs and I don't pay attention to them.
But yes, glaring hypocrisy on my part. Well spotted.
Great episode. Though I think I was approaching the subject from the opposite angle of most. A few months back I too through my hat into the very large ring of internet reviewers. Inspired by Linkara, I created Comics Are Awesome
(Hold-up, someone left a very blatant plug on the ground!) as a way to show the other side of comics, celebrating the awesome ones as opposed to tearing down the crap ones Lewis deals with... But as I started I realized I was potentially putting myself into a somewhat precarious position because if I am only reviewing the good ones, then I leave myself open to being called a corporate shill, or unable to recognize a bad comic when I see one.
So far that hasn't been an issue (which with my numbers, isn't a huge surprise) but I have put a lot of thought into how I present my reviews. So I can avoid a lot of the problems you guys talk about, I have other potential ones I might have to deal with someday. I guess that's part of the risk you take when you decide you want to put your opinion out on the internet for everyone to read.
I really liked the discussion on reviews and content there-of. I do guest reviews for Smart Bitches, and since the genre I tend to do is from the 80s and 90s, there aren't many authors that give a shit anymore (I did have one get linked to the review, but it was a book I mostly said squee! over, and that was cool). I, like foresthouse
and the Fangirl of the Type Native to Scotland, work hard at backing up negative reviews with "and here's why I didn't like it and why I think it's bad." So it's good to feel like I'm doing something right.
Also, the second book for Straight Guy Reviews sounds so hillarible. And AWESOME.
Like I said: if there turns out to be actual vampiring in that book, I would be willing to--nay, I will insist upon reading it.
Oh man, Warm Bodies. I couldn't resist buying it, but...it's the ending that makes it totally hilarious and wrong. For what it's worth, I got it from Waterstones, and it was stacked in horror, not Dark Romance. WHHYYY? D:
Just finished listening. Excellent episode everyone. And I think some of those authors need to grow up a little. When you make something that is open and available to the public, you have to take the good with the bad. I understand that this book (or whatever) is the culmination of your blood, sweat and tears. But man up about it. Really.
But I also think reviewers shouldn't be vicious for the sake of it. If it's bad, then say why and at least try to be polite about it.
And I look forward to the Wrath of Dayna (which in my mind, is similar to the Wrath of Khan).
Wonderful episode as always.
My favorite author batcrazy moment was Laurel K. Hamilton's "Dear Negative Reader" blog entry. She basically goes off on people who had been saying negative things on her forum about certain directions the series had taken. It was very unprofessional and funny to boot.
I'n definitely going to pick up "Warm Bodies" when it comes out for ebook. Can't wait to see Kevin's new review, the book sounds cracktastic.
2011-03-14 03:26 pm (UTC)
This got long.
Finished listening to this, to be fair all the wank about Hush Hush actually made me read Hush Hush, I spent the entire time searching out what people were commenting on and trying to parse it to what I would have thought when reading it as a teen, realised that it wasn't that different to YA Urban Fantasy/Horror that I did read. I think that either my teenaged self read a little too many horror books that had young teenaged protagonists (both genders) being stalked, assaulted and harassed by those they were dating, or all these stories are meant to show the scary side of dating.
I think that for me most of my reading choices come from Reviews/word of mouth and that I try to find the ones (blogs/reviewers) that are in line with what I like to read. I've seen some good ones especially one that has a rating system where she says that its not for her - but she'd recommend it to others. I've had friends rec books and they also explain why they want me to read it, though if someone I know asks me to read something I will give it a go even if its a huge struggle and i have issues reading it (though I do tend to base it on stuff I had to read at uni (Beowulf, Chaucer I'm looking at you).
I was a bit confused by what you meant about blurbs though - I thought Blurbs were the 1 -2 paragraph summary of the novel to give people an idea of content. Not what was used in The Simpsons: "Hello, this is Tom Clancy. Would I say, "If you're hunting for a good read this October, Marge Simpson's book is a clear and present danger to your free time"? Hell no I wouldn't. What do you mean I just said it? That doesn't count!'" I've never actually believed those in whatever media they turn up in.
So barring my confusion over blurbs, I thought it was very good and kinda want to read Warm Bodies.
Probably already saw something about the whole Jacqueline Howett fiasco
by now, but I listened to this podcast for the first time the same day it popped up on Twitter. Oh butthurt authors, will you ever learn (or cease to amuse us)?