How to Give an Honest Review

davidfarland:

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Over the last few days I’ve been talking about some of the tawdry practices that go on in our industry, and I’ve been wanting to talk about rules of conduct when giving reviews. Too often online I’ve seen instances where people are buying reviews or selling them or trading favors.

Here are a few rules that I think you should consider adopting:

1) Don’t review every book that you are asked to do. In the course of your career, you will most likely get thousands of requests for reviews. On an average week, I get two requests for cover quotes. Unfortunately, reading a long novel (say 800 pages of manuscript) can take as a much as 20 hours. If I were to read two novels a week, I wouldn’t have time to write anything at all. So, here are some basic reasons why you must turn things down.

a) If you don’t have time to give a quote, just be honest. There have been times in my life when I really wanted to give a quote and just couldn’t. For example, one of my students, Brandon Mull, asked for a quote a few years back for his novel Fablehaven. I felt terrible, but his timing was just bad for me. (I’ve read the novel since, and I loved it.) He’s gone on to have a great career (#1 New York Times Bestseller), but every time that I see him, I just feel crummy. Now that he’s in my shoes, I know that he understands just how hectic life can be.

b) If you give too many reviews, then it devalues your reviews. Many authors set a limit of say, 2 per year. That’s a wise thing to do. Years ago, when Terry Brooks gave me a nice cover quote for The Runelords, I felt grateful. When I later learned that Terry almost never gives cover quotes, I felt even more honored. (I think that he has only given a couple of quotes in his life, as I recall.) So lend some credence to your quotes by restricting the number that you give. More importantly, if you really want to give a quote to a novel, make it a priority.

c) If the novel is not in the genre that you write in, then most likely the publisher won’t want your cover quote anyway. I write fantasy. If someone who writes horror or romance or mainstream or young adult asks for a cover quote, then I don’t feel that it does them much good to give them a cover quote. In fact, I’ve given a couple quotes that the publisher has never used, so aside from heartwarming the author, it really didn’t help.

2) Never give a quote for money. I know a couple of authors who, in an effort to cut down on the number of people who ask for quotes, have said that they charge a high dollar amount for a cover quote. The argument goes like this: it costs me a lot of time (and therefore money) to read a book. If I’m going to read a novel with an eye toward a quote, which may have a huge impact on sales, why shouldn’t I get paid to do it?

The problem is that it causes a moral conundrum. If I get paid for a cover quote, will it be an honest one? Won’t the fact that I’m getting paid skew my perceptions? I think that it would. So I would never pay for a quote. On the occasions where people have asked me to give quotes for a reading fee, I’ve always refused to even read the book. Sorry, it just feels weird. Of course it goes without saying that you should never offer to pay for a cover quote, nor should you offer to give another author a quote in return for a favorable quote.

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fishingboatproceeds:

writingofcourse:

Our town paints fire hydrants. 2014’s theme is books! Here is their ode to John Green’s The Fault in Our Stars.
The artist for this hydrant is Paul Siegfried.  It’s located on the corner of Jefferson and Warren St, Huntington, IN 46750. Presented by the Huntington Arts Initiative, this year’s theme is Book, Look…and Listen!

File under Things I Did Not Anticipate While Writing TFIOS.

fishingboatproceeds:

writingofcourse:

Our town paints fire hydrants. 2014’s theme is books! Here is their ode to John Green’s The Fault in Our Stars.

The artist for this hydrant is Paul Siegfried.  It’s located on the corner of Jefferson and Warren St, Huntington, IN 46750. Presented by the Huntington Arts Initiative, this year’s theme is Book, Look…and Listen!

File under Things I Did Not Anticipate While Writing TFIOS.

micaxiii:

deductionfreak:

hazelguay:

The most valuable chart…



yes thanks for colouring it I had a hard time reading that

micaxiii:

deductionfreak:

hazelguay:

The most valuable chart…

image

yes thanks for colouring it I had a hard time reading that

(Source: hazeeelguay)

neil-gaiman:

The glorious Chris Riddell cover to THE SLEEPER AND THE SPINDLE, my strange (but Locus Award winning) story about an almost Snow White and a kind of Sleeping Beauty. Coming out from Bloomsbury the week of Hallowe’en.
View more Neil Gaiman on WhoSay

neil-gaiman:

The glorious Chris Riddell cover to THE SLEEPER AND THE SPINDLE, my strange (but Locus Award winning) story about an almost Snow White and a kind of Sleeping Beauty. Coming out from Bloomsbury the week of Hallowe’en.

View more Neil Gaiman on WhoSay

“If you cannot read all your books…fondle them—-peer into them, let them fall open where they will, read from the first sentence that arrests the eye, set them back on the shelves with your own hands, arrange them on your own plan so that you at least know where they are. Let them be your friends; let them, at any rate, be your acquaintances.”
Winston Churchill (via bookporn)
Do what the nice Batman says.

Do what the nice Batman says.

The comic panelists from a Spanish Masterclass at Case del Libro.
From L to R (standing): David Panadero (journalist and panel moderator). Riccardo Zanini (editor; “Diabolo comics”). David Muñoz (writer; “La mansión de los susurros”; “Tierra de vampiros”…)

From L to R (seated) David Alonso (writer, director and all-round great guy) and Miguel Ángel Martín (writer and draftsman; “Brain the brain”; “Psicopatia Sexualis”…)
Photo credit by Javier Perero Van Hoffe
Thanks to David Alonso for letting us know!

The comic panelists from a Spanish Masterclass at Case del Libro.

From L to R (standing): David Panadero (journalist and panel moderator). Riccardo Zanini (editor; “Diabolo comics”). David Muñoz (writer; “La mansión de los susurros”; “Tierra de vampiros”…)

From L to R (seated) David Alonso (writer, director and all-round great guy) and Miguel Ángel Martín (writer and draftsman; “Brain the brain”; “Psicopatia Sexualis”…)

Photo credit by Javier Perero Van Hoffe

Thanks to David Alonso for letting us know!

parchmentsandquills:

“What I say is, a town isn’t a town without a bookstore. It may call itself a town, but unless it’s got a bookstore it knows it’s not fooling a soul.” - Neil Gaiman

“Books have to be heavy because the whole world’s inside them.”
Cornelia Funke, Inkheart (via aquotee)

kazzykayye:

When people constantly tell me “old movies are boring.”

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"Old movies aren’t funny because they don’t swear."

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"There aren’t any cute guys."

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"Are you trying to be a hipster or something?"

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NEW FAVE POST GUYS.

(Source: a-masterpiece-of-understatement)

“Every first draft is perfect, because all a first draft has to do is exist.”

Jane Smiley (via inspired-to-write)

Somehow this is the most inspiring thing I’ve read in a long time. I’m going to go write now.

(via joleebindo)

nerdijose:

My first (finished) screenplay.

Kelly (A short film) by Jose L. Ortiz

nerdijose:

My first (finished) screenplay.

Kelly (A short film) by Jose L. Ortiz

imaginationfaculty:

I want to live here!!!

(Source: maleficent-z)