If You Didn’t Read It, Don’t Review It

August 24, 2011

I must have really made it, now that I’m getting one-star reviews! They are from “reviewers” who profess themselves too bored or unimpressed to finish reading my books. From the sound of it, the poor dears had to struggle to get through the first few chapters. One reader declared it a “waist” of time. Another managed to at least skim the book, enough to offer a non-comprehending, out-of-context opinion about one episode.

Offering the books free seems to invite this kind of trashing. It’s assumed the author didn’t value her own work enough to set a price on it. That really isn’t the reason, at least not for me. I write for the love of it and to attract readers, not to make money.

Even a very bad review can be fair, but there is no chance of fairness if there is no attempt to at least grasp what the author is doing. The stories have a beginning, middle, and end, all of which need to be a part of any honest evaluation. So do us all a favor, one-star reviewers. If finishing the book is too much for you, just put it down. Forget about it, delete it, throw it in the trash, or resell it. Just don’t feel obligated to comment.

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