Monday, August 29, 2011

The Power of Anonymous

Traditional wisdom dictates a writer shouldn't respond to reviews, positive or negative. I agree, however, we now live and work in a world of instant reviews from a wide array of unqualified sources. I'm not suggesting the "reviewer" who left the following "review" of The Bottom Feeders (the free edition, FYI) at Barnes & Nobel was unqualified:

Total BS

Each story was crap, the mere idea this is thought of horror is a joke, and frankly free or not it's a horrid read. The plot of each story is crude and the endings are rushed leaving you feel like you just read a middle schoolers ELA story.

Gee, thanks anonymous. Oh, I'm sorry, Anonymous. It is your proper name.

Remember when I wrote a post about all reviews being equal on the internet? Well, I rescind part of my statement. Anonymous reviews are more equal than others.

(By the way, Anon, you forgot the apostrophe before the second 's' on the possessive "schoolers"; just saying you might want to pay more attention in ELA class. I haven't even mentioned comma use...but that would just be snarky.)


9 comments:

Daniel W. Powell said...

What an eloquent jerk! I wish anonymous posting would go away altogether, but that's wishful thinking. You can't hold people accountable for the things they write!

Take it for what it's worth, which is nothing at all. I hope the writing is going well. New term here, so I'm hoping to get my "at-work" writing off on the right foot this afternoon...

Bradley Convissar said...

When reading reviews, I always look at the bad reviews because I want to see what their point of reference is. Of course, if the reviewer is anonymous, I tend to ifgnore those reviews because they are obviously trying to hide soemthing. I had soemthing simialr happen to me- got a scathing review for a short story-free shrot story-colelction. I went and looked back at all of her other reviews, and guess what? She hated EVERY Indie boomk she read, and she LOVED everuy classic she read. She loved James Joyces' protrait of an artist, which i think of as crap. Literary crap. And all I can hope is that people who give credence to this woman's review take the time and look at her other reviews and realize that she is prejudiced towards anythign Indie. I still do not undesdtand why someone who loves classics and hates horror easted their time on my work

Cathryn Grant said...

I'm with Bradley, I read the 1 & 2-star reviews to look for the point of reference and counter the rave reviews of friends. 97% of the time, the review says more about the reviewer than it does about the book being reviewed. ;)

Alan W. Davidson said...

I agree with Dan. If a person can't stand behind their comment they shouldn't be posting it at all. Otherwise 'anonymous' is equated with malicious intent and the commentor has something to hide. Nicely handled, Aaron.

Andre Jute said...

I think that's a grand comment. If the reader finished the book ("every story") and was moved to such massive spite, clearly Aaron is an effective -- and affective! -- writer.

Erin Cole said...

I don't trust any review that slams the writer.

Aaron Polson said...

Daniel - New school year (less than 2 weeks in). I think it will be a good one. Good luck--

Bradley - Oh yeah... Indie... :\

Cathryn - Some one star reviews seem like they were for different books.

Alan - Like I said, more equal. ;)

Andre - Thanks. ELA. Ha!

Erin - Good point.

K.C. Shaw said...

Oh, that's infuriating! I'm like everyone else, though: if a bad review is anonymous, I always ignore it. Obviously the reader has an axe to grind. Someone must be sickeningly jealous of you to want to bring you down so badly!

Writer Pat Newcombe said...

That's just terrible! If they really do think like that they should be prepared to own their own words. In any case I always belive there is no need to be nasty when reviewing stuff. You could just say you didn't like it or it wasn't for you. After all one man's meat and all that...
All anonymous reviewers are just plain cowards...