I read for MY pleasure.
It’s been a wee while since I’ve done a Random Ramblings but I’ve stored up enough stuff that I HAD to put my thoughts out to the world. This post will be me rambling on about what’s going on in the reading world at the moment.
First and foremost, I read for my pleasure. I started to review the books I was reading because I wanted to get my thoughts and feelings down. There are a lot of books out there that have touched me. Some of my feelings were good and some were bad. The funny thing, though, it’s always about the book…not the author.
No one should attack an author because of what they write. You can like or hate an author’s work but that’s their job not them as a person. If they can successfully write about aliens with tentacles making the best lovers, well good for them. I’m hardly going to attack an author for having an imagination. My attitude is and will always be…each to their own and all that jazz.
I have made some friends in the reading world and some of them have been authors. Their books may have touched me in a way that has led me to reach out to them. More times than not, I’m reaching out to let them know that their book rocked my world. This does not mean I want that author to now be my best friend. It also does not mean that I want or need them to do something for me in return for my praise. I’m also not signing up to be their FREE promo person.
I can confidently say that all of my author friends (well the ones I care about) would never tell me to promo their work. These authors also know that I expect nothing in return for what I do. If I do it, it’s because I want to do it, not because I’m told to do it.
Promoting a book SHOULD be a recommendation.
Any book pimping that comes from me is because I have strong feelings for that book and I’m willing to shout it to the world. I am not going to be promoting a book I have not read. I MAY sometimes promote a book by an author that is coming out soon, that I’m excited about. More times than not, I’ll share a post written by that author, from their Facebook page, to my profile. I don’t sign up to a promo blog to promo only.
This brings me to another point – I think we’ve gone off track with the purpose of Advanced Reading Copies. Yes, I know that a lot of book bloggers/R2Rs do it to get their books for free. Maybe, for a very small amount of time (when I first started) I was getting a kick out of saving money on books. It didn’t last long, though. It all started to feel bad and dirty. I lost the pleasure in reading.
There was no more sitting back and reading at my leisure…because…now I had deadlines. Oh my lordy, just typing that made me cringe. Deadlines??? How can something I do for pleasure suddenly have a timeline? I shouldn’t be worried about how long it takes me to read a book. There shouldn’t be a fear that I can’t get it read by the release date. I SHOULDN’T BE WORRIED THAT THE PROMO COMPANIES WILL DENY ME AN ARC BECAUSE I DIDN’T POST ON A CERTAIN BLOODY DAY AT A CERTAIN BLOODY TIME!!
(Well, there goes my chance for ever getting another ARC from a promo company)
Promo companies are paid by the author to get their releases seen. Do authors realise how much bloggers are starting to resent the way the promo companies act? Do either the promo companies or the authors realise how upsetting it is for a blogger to be knocked back for an ARC but told to promo the book anyway. While also implying that if we don’t promo (without the ARC) our chances deteriorate for future ARC’s.
This is not my idea of reading for pleasure.
In my mind, I think an advanced copy should be given and accepted with one thought in mind – sharing the love.
I can honestly say that I accept ARC’s because I want the opportunity to help make that book a success for the author.
Do I finish…or do I not? That is the question?
I think I’m going to make an executive decision for myself. From now on, if I do not finish a book, Goodreads will be the only place I post it. I will not rate it and I may or may not give a short reason why. I’m not supposed to love every book I touch. If someone wants to know why I did not finish a book, send me a message and I’ll let you know. I can’t bring myself to promote a book I did not enjoy.
What a review should or should not be.
A review should be whatever the hell you want it to be. Recently, I saw a post on Facebook where there was a debate on whether a reviewer’s personal opinion should be included in a review.
Ummm…isn’t that what a review should be all about? Shouldn’t a review help a READER find a book that will suit them? A perfect example is cheating. I hate cheating and if I can avoid it, I will. I do not have a problem with reading about the couple with other people before they come together, though. Now, if I mentioned this in my review and like-minded people saw that, I think I’m doing the author a favour. Maybe I’ve just saved the author from a negative review???
I’m not writing a review for the author. Don’t get me wrong, I love it when an author likes my review, but that’s just a bonus. I want my review to help readers choose a good book that will suit them.
A PA to an author recently complained on Facebook that a book blogger mentioned spelling and grammar mistakes in a review. The complaint was that ARC’s are not the final copy that goes out to customers.
Sure love, I know that, and you know that, but does every person who receives an ARC know that?
What about when an author has a competition to win an ARC? Is it explained to the winner that it’s not the final copy? Instead of having a whinge, how about approaching the reviewer in a non-confronting way and letting them know that the errors will (hopefully) be picked up before it’s released.
I have a disclaimer at the bottom of my reviews to cover my butt. A one-off mistake is OK, but a book riddled with errors would not be getting a 5-star rating from me. I don’t mention spelling and grammar mistakes in my review in the hope that the final copy has been edited properly.
To the Author…
I love to read and I get a kick out of sharing my love for reading romance. It’s a privilege to be offered advanced copies of stories. I appreciate that you think highly enough of my opinion to ask me to read and review your work. I also know it’s not easy to put yourself out there.
If I say I’m going to read your book, I have every intention to do that. It may not be today…but that day will come…soon…ish.
If your book didn’t work for me, I will try to let you know in the kindest way possible. I never mean to offend when I give feedback directly to you. I’m trying to give it to you straight and maybe even help a little.
Well, that was a heck of a lot of rambling but it’s stuff that I’ve been thinking about for awhile. Sorry if I’ve stepped on toes and you are offended. These are just my thoughts and random ramblings…