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Author, Avid Tweeter & Blogger, Lover of books, Teacher of Maths & Swimming, Mother, Speaks Spanish, Friend to many...

Monday, 14 May 2012

The world I knew nothing about...until now!

Today I witnessed a discussion between readers and an author which left a bad taste in my mouth.

The author had apparently spammed about his book and was caught making false reviews (apparently made by his family).  This led the readers to believe he had so many 5 star reviews which were actually supposedly fake.  The reader proceeded to tell the author to pxxx off and stop justifying something that was so obviously wrong!  Added to this the book appeared to be riddled with errors...oops!

Anyway, I felt sorry for the author. Obviously, he is trying to pitch his book to sell - I guess to make money?  But, he is deluded if he thinks what he has done/ is doing is right.  I would not dream of asking people to make fake reviews... but then, is this happening all the time?  I get the impression a lot of reviews are made up and do not actually give an honest opinion.

I am not the best reviewer, and I will seek to make amends and review items I purchase from now on.  If I look at the reviews then I might as well post my own.  But this is a strange world we live in.  A world of reviews...in the old days you went to a shop, you liked something and you bought it.  Sure people talked and gave reviews but usually you knew they were genuine. 

Also, I have bought enough tat in my time as childrens presents/ food from the shop to know that I can spend £5 easily on rubbish.  So, if you spend under £5 on a book are you justified to make that person feel like sxxx!  You can't take a toy back and say this is sxxx.  It's a risk on a cheap purchase.

Until I started writing I had no idea of the time, effort and work that goes into producing a book.  Yet, now we can pick up a paperback from the supermarket for £1.50 - wow!  That's cheaper than a portion of chips! What a world we live in...

But, I add I am always out for a good deal myself...so ce la vie...Let's toast to consumerism and the market economy - we should be so proud!
Vanessa :)


  1. Interesting - I came across similar only the other day - on Goodreads, someone was saying something about someone who gave all other authors in the same genre 1 star reviews to make hers look better! I too think some reviews are, if not fake, certainly just written by mates and family who haven't even read the books. I've read extracts on Amazon of books that are pretty awful, and a couple I've bought, only to find that they read worse than my first drafts, with grammar and punctuation errors and horrendous sentence structure all over the place, and are not even formatted for the Kindle very well - yet they have 5 or 6 reviews saying how 'beautifully crafted' they are, etc.

    I cannot see the point of doing this. In the end, a rubbish book will not make you any money, even if it gets you a few sales. You're not really fooling anyone, are you? Apart from anything else, it's about integrity, isn't it?

    The other thing is that people who do this sort of thing spoil it for the majority, and can make the reading public think that all indie books are badly written, badly formatted, and falsely reviewed.

    Something else I saw a discussion about yesterday was that some people actually RATE THEIR OWN BOOKS on Goodreads. How crass and desperate is that, eh?

    Good article, Vanessa

  2. Well, it seems that rating and reviewing are becoming a part of everyday life! The internet is littered with "like" and "rate" buttons - you wonder where it's going to stop...can I "like" your "like" button??!
    Co-incidentally, my publisher has just written an article on reviews, giving advice for those published by small press, which is also relevant for self-publishing. Have a look over here:

  3. Thanks for your comments Terry and Sue... if we authors band together then there will light at the end of the tunnel...

  4. Well, I wonder if we saw the same discussion yesterday. An author was caught making up fake reviews...and his excerpt was awful. In my mind, there is no justification for that.

    I am published...have a lot of reviews, most of which are from book bloggers that my publisher sent ARCs to. You can't judge all authors with good reviews based on a few insecure fools. I also ask for reviews on Twitter and my FB page, but I always say, "if you've read my book, please take a minute to write a quick review." Amazon, for example, won't promote a book under its "you might also like" feature unless a book has over 20 reviews...so authors do push for reviews, but I don't know any (with the tiny exceptions like the man yesterday) who fake them. Personally, my family waited until recently to buy my book that's been out for 6 months and are too computer illiterate to write me a review! Lol My point is...the majority of authors are honest and are career writers who are too smart to do something to derail themselves.