Reflections of a working writer and reader
The blank page is always pure potential, for everyone, me included. Every time you begin, it's just as frightening, and just as much of a risk. The magic can always fail, and the eggs that come out of the hat may end up on the floor.
john baker, August 28th, 2011. 4 comments. Filed under literature, reviews.
Have you had a bad review lately?
Slate poetry editor, Robert Pinsky, considers what happened to John Keats and the review which, allegedly, killed him.
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I’ve only had one ever. By that I mean so far. A girl on Goodreads gave Living with the Truth a 1-star rating and all she said was she couldn’t finish it. That made me rather sad but I can’t imagine any review would be worth killing oneself over. My first two books are out as e-books now – the official notification goes up tonight – and so I’m going to be looking for some reviews from that community and I’ll be interested to see what I get. From what I can see most e-book only authors tend to work in genres and I have no idea how you would classify what I do. I suspect a few might not be on the same page as me but we’ll see.
I have drafted a book from the point of view of an 12 year old boy and asked some children at a local school to review it (without revealing my identity). Got some good reviews but also this: I hated how you thought you were being funny and you were not.
So that told me.
‘Dieabolikal’ should win some kind of prize. Best thing I heard all day.
It goes to show that different people have different tolerance. It’s how much you put your heart on your work and yet despite your effort, it’s not good enough. I can’t blame anybody doing this but it’s really not worth dying for me at least.
Read extracts from my novels
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