On Reviews And Things

Whenever I log into Goodreads, I see a long list of people who are following my reviews. This makes me feel a little guilty, because the number of reviews I have posted on Goodreads right now stands at a nice round zero. This isn’t because I don’t read books; on the contrary, though I don’t read as much as I’d like, I still read probably a dozen books and many short stories in a year.

The problem is that in the furry community, and to a lesser extent in the SF community, I know or could run into the authors of the books I read. And–I want to stress that this is my personal feeling, not something other people should necessarily worry about; I like reading reviews of my books–I get too worried trying to write a review of a book and then thinking about the person reading it if I don’t know them, let alone if I do, that it just becomes easier not to do it. Besides which, I’ve already encountered drama between people I know over star ratings, and I just don’t want to have to deal with that.

I make a few exceptions, like for Rukis’s “Heretic,” when it’s a book I thoroughly enjoyed and suspect that many people might not know about or give a chance. In Rukis’s case, though Red Lantern proves her story chops, a lot of people might be reluctant to pick up a book of prose; I wanted to tell them they should absolutely give it a shot. When I have a purpose to the review, like that, then it’s a lot easier to convince myself to do it.

And I absolutely do go to sites like Amazon and iTunes and leave ratings (not under this name) for books I like. This is one of the best things you can do for an author right now: those sites work off customer reviews, not only for people browsing the books, but also in figuring how often books are returned in search results, etc.

But in general, yeah, I am not going to be reviewing a lot. Sorry about that. If you run into me in person, you can ask me what I thought of a book and if I’ve read it, I’ll be happy to talk about it.

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