Sunday 28 April 2013

Reviews on Amazon and Why You Should Not Take Them as Gospel If You Value Your Reading Experience

Welcome to the world of rants, rants and more rants. Yes, this is the low down on Amazon reviews! Hurrah!

I hate Amazon reviews with a passion. The only reason I ever write them myself is when I have to. I've heard along the Internet grapevine (so it might not be true) that Amazon have been deleting some reviews. Not in a control-the-press kind of way, but in a stop-authors-bad-mouthing-the-competition and friends-of-authors-giving-them-completely-false-good-reviews kind of way. If that is the case, then they darn well haven't been deleting the right reviews.
 I may have moaned before about how my Kindle is registered to my mum's account from before I had my own and how I can't send books to it and swapping it to my account would mean losing the 150 or so books I've read (and the good hundred or so that I haven't). Well, it means that my mum has to buy books for me.
 And that's where 'the good hundred or so I haven't' bit comes in. See, a lot of them are just books by Austen or Stoker or someone old which I just haven't yet had the willpower to get through. But a large amount are books with rave Amazon reviews.
 "Why won't you read it?" my mum will say. "It's got forty five-star reviews on Amazon!"
 Fact is, Amazon reviews lie. I don't know if that's because the idea of reviewing only appeals to people who, like me, hate to be harsh, or if the general public really are that easily pleased, but I've found that even the worst books are praised to within an inch of their lives. In fact, you're more likely to find a good book in the deep dark hole of 'mixed reviews' than the shining temple of 'five stars'.
 Which is why, occasionally, I'll write an Amazon review. Not because I loved the book, nor even because I love cutting the souls out of fellow writers in a fit of jealousy. No, I write the review so that maybe, just maybe, someone about to buy that book, that stupid book with no punctuation, the whole love-at-first-sight-with-no-explanation gig and a strange view of racism towards Native Americans, will realise that there's at least one bad review, and it's logical and cutting enough that it might possibly be true. And then they'll stop themselves from buying it, at least until they've harvested reviews from the farther reaches of the Internet.

I just thought I'd warn you. Sorry for the mini-rant, but, hopefully, not taking Amazon reviews as Gospel may just save your life one day.

Yeah, I wouldn't count on it either.

Reader out!

Friday 26 April 2013

Self-Pub vs Trad-Pub

And now time for the age-old -- maybe not age-old, but you know what I mean -- argument. Which is better, self-pub or trad-pub? Only one way to find out...
Have a rational discussion about it.

I love Harry Hill's TV Burp, don't you?

Kindle vs Kindle-with-a-light-on-it

It's a bit of a mouthful, I know. But today, you get to find out lots of things. Mainly about my life, but a few things might be slightly helpful.

Friday 19 April 2013

Film Review: Silver Linings Playbook

To be honest with you, this isn't going to be a review. It's going to be a rant with lots of spoilers of the absolutely amazing book version. Avert your eyes from the words after the jump break if you haven't read it. In fact, avert your eyes in the direction of a copy and read the damn thing before you a) watch the film and b) get me knocking on your door (because you know I know where you live), preparing to punch you in the face. READ. THE. BOOK.

Thursday 18 April 2013

TCWT Blog Chain!

Yes, it's here again! It's the TCWT Blog Chain! Huzzah! This month, the topic is 'What is your ultimate goal as a writer'. Ooh, exciting, I hear you say. I want to read all the blogs that are participating.

27th – 
29th – (We’ll announce the topic for next month’s chain)

Saturday 13 April 2013

Music Review: Paramore by Paramore

I love music, and while it doesn't really fit under the 'Eat My Book' remit other than as that thing what you do while writing and reading what also has words in it, it's music. It's another art form, and one most readers and writers love, and it can be inspirational. What you're listening to can determine what you write, from the themes of its lyrics to the mood of its sound. So I've decided that every now and then I will sort of review an album.

Friday 12 April 2013

What I did yesterday (because I know you care)

I went to the Bronte Parsonage Museum in Haworth. Okay, okay, I know what you're thinking. I went to a museum like ten minutes from my house, how interesting.

Yeah, you guys are mean.

What I was there for was a thing. Yes. A thing. Some of you may remember that I went on an Arvon course in February (or you might not, I can't rememeber if I posted about it). I had a great time and we wrote loads of Bronte-related stuff (when in Rome/Yorkshire, after all). We also looked round the about-to-open Bronte Parsonage Museum, which was fun, and they let us look at some of the things they had, for example a tiny little book written by the sisters and their brother, and a toy lion, and then we wrote about them, or the place as a whole, or whatever caught our fancy.

Those poems and pieces of prose (by which I mean 'piece of prose', as I was the only prosey person in the village) are up all around the museum, and they're all actually quite good and everything was actually quite interesting and fun and stuff. Besides being in a place were people kept saying 'Charlotte' and turning around and realising they're talking about the Bronte sister. Awkward.

So that's what I did yesterday. This will not be happening tomorrow. You do not want to know what I am doing today --shudders--

Only Prose-girl in the village out!

Thursday 4 April 2013

Book Review: Slated by Teri Terry

Kyla was a criminal in her past life, but now? She's been Slated: her memory has been taken away and she's been given a chance to be someone different. But Kyla isn't like other Slated kids, and as time goes on, she wonders whether she wants to be...