Slushie's got a brand new bag baby, Yea! I'm reviewing for The Season, as I'm sure you noticed with my last post. My personal opinion of writing is that the process in general is easy, but developing good, time lasting writing is hard. Well, I got news for you... writing reviews is even harder.
Now you say, "Why Slush? It's just 400-750 words about a book. Less if it's really bad, and you get to voice personal opinion about someone elses writing. It's not personal and reviews are subjective, like rejections."
1.) I want those 400-750 words to actually mean something, and not appear as some sort of drivel I spat out of my forked, tongue lashing mouth. Those words should speak to potential readers, not just say 'It was good, buy it!' Coming up with something like that can be as hard as a back cover blurb or query.
2.) Personal opinion is great. I often read reviews on products, books, movies, etc. just to get an idea about something. Though I feel that sometimes people can be a little too open with their thoughts. Don't get me wrong, I want honesty, but can you put it in an intelligible way?? This leads me back to #1. I don't want readers looking at my review going, "This lady is an idiot".
3.)The review is not personal, it's a reflection of your opinion on a book. Yes, but I still feel bad when I give a rating that's low. Let me remind you that I will read just about anything. I'm a sucker for a book, and rarely have I encountered a book that I will not finish; probably 1 to 2 books in my entire life thus far. Now, I will be honest and I really take my rating seriously. That 10 rating has to be a book that I could re-read every single day and never stop loving it. In a small way, I now understand how agents feel when writing rejections. It sucks! Reviewing is just as difficult at times.
4.)I get that reviews are subjective... the whole point of personal opinion. By golly this is why I refuse to completely bash the books I read. Even if they are not a favorite, I want to still give the book a chance for others who may disagree with me. Brotherhood of the Wolf anyone? This movie had dismal critic reviews, but I love the movie.
Bottom line: Writing reviews is just as challenging to me as writing a novel. I want to give an honest, fair review that knocks the socks of people, even if the book is not getting that coveted 10. I want people to respect the words I type, and know that my opinion is only an opinion; you could still love that book. I feel guilty when my honesty and ethical reasoning forces me to still give a semi-low rating because as an unpublished author I want to see published ones flourish, especially my favorites. It's a rewarding opportunity and a challenge that I'm enjoying.