So this whole thing with The Guardian and Kathleen Hale blew the fuck up like overnight and most if not all of you reading this have already heard/read/talked about it.
For those of you that haven't here is the TL;DR version:
Crazy Reviewer reviewed, Author didn't like.
Author went even more crazy than the crazy reviewer, stalked reviewer, and I mean hardcore stalked the woman, up to and including phoning the reviewer at her place of work and pitching up on the lady's doorstep after renting a car to drive to where the woman lived.
A whole lot of premeditation and a whole lot of crazy.
This blog isn't about that.
What this post is about is the opinion of a different person who posted that authors have no business reading the reviews of their work.
I disagree. I disagree totally.
Crazy authors should probably refrain from reading the reviews of their work but sane ones, should be able to read their reviews especially sane independent authors and here's why:
As a self-published independent author there are certain luxuries I can't afford, such as a professional editor. Seriously. I'm a freaking security guard by day and I can barely afford to keep my car running let alone pay someone $700.00+ to run amok with a red pen leaving me to decipher on my own whatever it is they've scrawled in my margins.
I am well aware of something that seems to be glossed over by like a lot in all of these blogs and articles and what have you...
I don't write these books for me.
I write these books for you, and if you aren't happy then what's the freaking point?
How do I tell if you are happy or unhappy?
Oh. Right. You tell me when you leave a rating or review!
Also, as an independent self published author, how am I expected to improve upon my craft without a big publication company and editing team/guru backing me up?
Oh. Right. Some of those reviews I'm not supposed to be reading have helpful little Easter eggs of wisdom in them! Things like wishes about knowing more about this or that character, wishes that I would lay off of this or that phrase or even wishes that I would pay more attention to certain grammatical errors or errors in punctuation and some of you more enterprising reviewers actually take a lot of time and effort to spell out in very fine detail what my dumb ass is doing WRONG!!!
I APPRECIATE YOU. I LOVE YOU. BUT APPARENTLY ACCORDING TO SOME PEOPLE I'M SUPPOSED TO LET ALL OF YOUR EFFORTS LIE FALLOW AND NEVER READ WHAT YOU HAVE WRITTEN WHY!?
Because reviews aren't for the author they are solely for readers.
Well I call bullshit on that notion!
So I end this rant with this...
Authors. Read your reviews, get better in subsequent books, just for the love of god lay off the 'message' button. Don't touch it. Read and get what you can out of it but DO NOT ENGAGE. The only time it is acceptable, again, IN MY OPINION, is when a reviewer messages you directly first or in answer to a direct question that can't get you into any trouble.
The ONLY question I answer when I see it is "I wonder when the next book comes out, does anybody know?"
Of course I know! So I hit reply and keep it simple with "This is who the book is about and this is when it comes out, cheers and thanks for reading."
By some standards even that is considered too far and outrageous and unacceptable and guess what... IDGARA.
Anyone who wants to jump my shit for it, feel free! It's your opinion and the first amendment right is alive and well here in the United States of America. Not particularly thrilled about personal attacks but I'm not a crazy bitch. I won't call you, come to your house or perform any background checks... At most you will get this face -_- and a DILIGAF?
So as ever, thanks for reading, you're my favorite, I love you and good night!