Do You Read Reviews?
NOTES: My days escaped me, and I forgot my Sunday post, so here it is today.
I always hear people talking about review of products. They are either all for them, or they say they do not bother with them. Personally, I like to weigh the good reviews against the bad. I do this with books, or another product that I am interested in purchasing. I am going to focus on books, since I buy more of this product than any other product.
NOTE: I am using the word book, but I am also referring to e-books, which I buy more often than hard copy now.
In other words, I read the bad reviews. If they are just pissie, or overly critical without talking about the story when it comes to the book in question, I ignore them. Lemons happen in all products, and no one is perfect. One or two problems do not necessarily make a bad story. I agree that some do lazy work, and that makes for a bad read. Shame on that author for giving self-publishing a bad name. Thank God, more and more authors are now putting out quality product. I know this, because I buy them. I am in it for a story, when I am looking for a book. I am in it for the fun, the escape, the entertainment, or the learning experience.
A review is not a critique. It is an overall review of the story, and a little bit about presentation, I may, consider it, but it will not necessarily keep me from buying. Is the review just mean and overly critical or do they actually say something worthwhile, besides just dissing, because they can?
What I look for: The cover grabs me. I read the blurb. If I like the story premise, I check the reviews. Bad reviews vs. Good reviews, and what they said. People are human. The self-publishing do not have the budgets of the traditional, or on call staff to call for assistance, sometimes the product is not perfect, but that does not mean it is not a story worth reading. The more stories the writer writes will improve with time, because practice makes everyone better at whatever they are doing. Hit and miss. Trial and error. Time, practice and effort generally brings improvement to most people, so if I like the story I will give a good review, not a critique.
If I really, really enjoyed it. I check other works by this author as well. It is the same with any product. When I give a review, generally there is something I liked about the product. I do not waste my energy on bad review, unless I think buyer beware. You do not really want this product, and I am offering you concrete reasons not to buy. Positive criticism is something entirely different from just being pissie, mean spirited, and overly critical. Yes, the author may need that, but a review is not an editorial platform. If you do not like it, yes, you should say so, but massacring the overall integrity of someone is just bad form, IMHO, in a review.
I have never experienced this, but I am sure my time will come, lol. My opinion is that of a reader. I am a voracious reader. I love the story, the craft and all that comes with it. Reviews help me determine if I want to spend the money, take the risk, and more often than not, sell me in the end. However, I read the review with an objective eye, and whether or not points made by the reviewer are truly valid, or just from someone who loves to critique, because they may be good at, and because they can. The review is about assisting the interested buyer in the decision to buy or not to buy. The review is not an editorial platform.