Thursday Midday Links: Maggie Stiefvater on Reviews
Because apparently the YA author flameouts are unending, we’ve got two more for you. First up is agent Elena Roth and author Kiera Cass ineptly plotting “quietly” on twitter to upvote positive review and downvote a “bitch”‘s negative ones. Then we have Maggie Stiefvater (she of the romances are “trite, formulaic” mentality) who tries to argue that the only legitimate reviews are ones that are in the form of an academic thesis. She knows this because she wrote history papers in college. And the “pro” reviews, the ones with “tiny supporting sentences” are the only ones that matter:
Because they’re fair and thorough, they’re prized and respected in the publishing world. Authors celebrate positive pro reviews. They sigh and learn from negative pro reviews. Publishing houses bend over backward to send review copies to these journals in time for a timely review, because good reviews can make or break a book’s success with libraries and booksellers.
But those negative reviews. The ones with all caps, gifs, swearing and snark? Those aren’t reviews. Plus, the animated gifs, swearing and snark make the non review personal. Yes, animated kitties and a few curse words magically transform the non review into a personal attack:
Bloggers who regularly write them cannot expect to garner the same respect and treatment from authors that pro reviewers or non-pro reviewers do. They can’t expect authors to read their posts and learn something from them. And they cannot expect authors to not take it personally. They’ve made it personal.
Let’s repeat Stiefvater’s argument here. Bloggers who use animated gifs, curse words and snark should expect the treatment that they get from authors. Because, as Stiefvater says, no matter how funny those non reviews are, the non reviewers are being a “jerk” and they are “unprofessional” and the gifs, curse words, and snark make it a non review.
Ultimately, the reason why I find the Guardian article to be incorrect is because YA authors don’t have a problem with online book reviewers. There is rarely any drama over the dozens of bloggers who write hundreds of great reviews every month, both positive and negative.
Right. Of course. That is why this review here made Julie – woke up googled myself – Halpern . Hmm, no gifs, no curse words, no snark. Or how about Kira’s review? Again, gifs? No. Curse words? Yes, she uses “A Hole” in reference to herself. GASP. THE HORROR. Snark? Not really. Further, effort isn’t what defines reviews and even if it was, have you guys ever tried a GIF review? That shit is hard.
I don’t know how many YA reviewers read this blog, but I hope you all keep on keeping on. I love how you are transforming the way readers interact with books and discuss them online. Publishers and publicists want the bloggers to talk about the books in a way that connects with their readership and lolcats, gifs, curse words haven’t seemed to deter publicists and publishers from seeking out bloggers. The only thing that publicists and publishers really care about is platform. Do you have a platform from which you can spread the word about the book?