Thursday, June 19, 2014

Why do some people review books? A few thoughts of my own...

Gotta wonder why someone would waste their time reviewing books if they never truly like any. I'm not one to usually comment or even seek out reviews on my books because I am very hard on myself when someone is negative about my books, but I saw a review today on one of my books that I made me go and look at the person's other reviews. They rarely gave above two stars, if at all. Why bother to read any books if you're expecting everything to be the quality of Shakespeare or Bronte or Faulkner? Especially in today's society where books are released one after another by smaller publishing houses or self-pubbed by many authors. I just think you're wasting your time if you never enjoy the books. What's the point if you never like them? Why read at all?

Well... to each his own, I suppose. But the reviewer is not one I intend on letting affect my frame of mind as there is no value in a reviewer who is consistently acidic and negative and doesn't ever seem to enjoy what they read. Just saying. No offense to any reviewers on my friends list on Facebook or Twitter or even those I haven't met yet who stumble across my blog. Most of them, if not all, know I've been actively seeking reviews for one of my books. I want the reviews, but just felt the need to speak my mind on this. I can only hope anyone who reads the reviews takes them with a grain of salt. Not all readers like the same thing, as reviews on most of my books will dictate. Some loved Touch Me Gently and others outright hated it. The same with the rest of them. I may not be one of the aforementioned writers, but I don't think I do too bad of a job.

Hopefully as I continue to write and stumble on these reviews, my writing will grow and expand and I will get better. I think I have already come quite a distance from Touch Me Gently to now. And I believe Forgiving Thayne has been my best one yet. It was more cohesive and less of one of the MCs seeming as if he were a woman in a male role. Many outside forces affect a writer's stories. I came from a world of Yaoi where on a typical story there is a more feminine character. HOWEVER, with that stated, there are no two people alike. There are feminine men out there who cry at the drop of a hat or who will accept being treated badly but still love someone. Just as a woman would. Let's not forget that horrific excuse for a trilogy named something along the lines of fifty shades of horseshit? Some of the comments I've seen in the reviews on my books have been how unrealistic my characters are, but its rather obvious the owners of those comments haven't met very many people in their lives. I have friends from all avenues of life, gay, straight, bi, white, black, asian, funny, serious, sarcastic, witty, weak, strong, and more. I write from experience, from people I've met, movies I've seen, books I've read, commercials, anything that sparks an idea or character.

Anyway, I think this is just something that needs to be said. We, as writers, are not allowed to voice our opinions to the reviewers or fight back on some of the more scathing reviews as it's considered bad form. I never respond to reviews, good or bad, for the most part. I have recently said thank you to the blogs which I requested the review from and they have let me know they posted it. But on the whole, I never say a word. I avoid the reviews typically to avoid damaging my self confidence and putting up a road block in whatever I am writing.  I will never be Mary Calmes or RJ Scott or Amber Kell. I am J.R. Loveless and that's good enough for me. I love to write and build worlds even if there are some who don't like the way I write or the worlds I build. I love my characters and I am proud of what I have accomplished thus far.

I will leave it at that as I have to go do some things. This was not aimed at any specific reviewer and wasn't intended to piss any reviewers off. Just a forthright opinion and what's on my mind.


  1. I'm a reviewer and I agree completely. It seems to be some sort of a power trip for some people and a way to just be mean and get away with it. I know it's hard but try reviewing something WITHOUT any expectations and judge it on it's own merit.

    Of course I'm also a writer and I don't go looking for reviews either. It's easy to say "you're a writer and you have to accept that bad reviews come with the job" and I do accept that. But it's not realistic to expect us to not be hurt or affected by someone who's just ripped apart something that we've poured our heart and souls into.

    BTW, I'm glad that your just JR Loveless. Touch Me Gently is one of my favorite stories and I read it quite often when I'm looking for a smile.

    1. Some people do treat the reviews as a power trip and its because 1, they know they can affect an author's world and the readers who may want to read the book. 2, because they know they can say anything they want without receiving any flack for it from the authors. Ive seen this in one of the reviewers on Goodreads.

      It is very painful to read a review that guts you. If someone offers constructive criticism it is a fraction, a tiny one, better than the ones that just say they fkn hated it.

      :) Touch Me Gently will always be special to me for a multitude of reasons, despite the haters. I am appreciative and humbled that you have marked it as one of your favorites.