Thursday, September 29, 2016

What is a good review?

Good reviews do not mix the “this is not my favorite genre” with the “your story sucks”. They also know how to balance the negative with the positive comments.

Since texts by authors of all kinds are available in many online outlets, senseless reviews are plentiful. Nobody takes absolute criticism, trolling, well. Our brain registers this as an attack and the basic fight or flee reaction takes place.

Some pieces of advice on how to deal with unsolicited negative reviews:
1. Avoid sharing your work with those who do not understand how hard it is to create it in the first place.
2. Consider the source. Always take reviews with a grain of salt.
3. Reject review offers from openly hostile people. Make it clear that you are not after everybody’s opinion at this stage of your work.
4. If something feels like verbal abuse, do not reply. Nothing good comes out of it.
5. Take into account the problems the critic giving his opinion might have.

There are reasons that might explain that kind of destructive reviews:
a-  Feeling like an outsider or not fully understanding the work. If that is the case meet your critic and talk lengthy about your goals and intentions. He might change his views with more information.
b- Being a frustrated writer. He wants to write but is blocked, afraid or just lazy. Envy makes people aggressive. Discharging our frustrations on someone else is the easy part.
c- Being a narcissistic bully, a troll. This is unfixable. Writers are magnets for this kind of people. We pay attention, which they want and because of our lonely nature we become easy targets. This people will say anything to destroy our self-esteem. Remember that NOTHING a troll says has any value. Win a Booker Prize and you will hear “What, no Nobel?” They will never be satisfied no matter how hard you try because nothing makes them happier than their ability to make you miserable.

Good reviews are necessary in any art form but the negative kind, the derogatory and biased review is pure venom. 

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