I know, I know—it’s been a while since I’ve contributed to the Authors of Main Street blog, but I blame that all on Myren [It’s in his job description—Chauffeur: Takes the fall for any and all issues, problems, criticisms, and other assorted blamable things]
It’s true. Myren can be very distracting. He insists on driving around at least fifty miles a day so that I don’t have an excuse to cut his pay. I said fine—go take a long ride off a short pier and enjoy yourself. I’m smiling when I say it, I swear. But he insists I must ride along with him in the back of the limo to make it official. (I thought of buying one of those blow up dolls to throw in the back seat, but I was too shy distressed appalled amazed flummoxed whatever to go on that website where they sell blow up dolls).
Seriously though, Myren is absolutely a nut case pain in the invaluable—I absolutely do don’t know what I’d do without him. He’s a devilish big mouth darling and more annoying than a bees nest in the ground after you just ran over it with your lawn mower worth his weight in gold. (In case you’re wondering, I told him I’d be more supportive) (Don’t tell him about the blame thing above).
We’re all here—by “here” I mean at Authors of Main Street—because we LOVE reading books. It’s our thing—among other things of course, but I wasn’t going to go into all those other things right now in the middle of this blog post—even though Myren is right now dictating a list of other things he’d rather do—did I mention the man is incorrigible a delight?
So where was I? Oh, yes—Books! We love them, some we especially adore. When that happens, dear readers, I would encourage you to write up a review of said adorable book and share your love with the world. But maybe you’re too shy distressed appalled amazed flummoxed whatever to write a review.
This is your lucky day! I have 5 tips to help you write a fabulously quotable review!
- Do not use cliches.
For an example of a cliche, see above where I say “worth his weight in gold”. An example of a cliche from a book review would be something like “full of twists and turns” or “kept me up all night”. Rather, think of how refreshing it would be if you said honestly, “I couldn’t keep my eyes open even though I really wanted to, so I fell asleep in the middle of page seven and then dreamed about the story all night. What a dream inspiring book that was!”
- Do use inventive words. The thesaurus is your friend. For an example of an inventive word, see above where I say “flummoxed”. An example of an inventive word in a review would be “popped”.
- Do use metaphors and analogies—inventive ones.
For an example of an inventive analogy see above where I said the thing about the bees nest and the lawn mower. An example of an inventive analogy in a book review would be “characters who come alive like Pop Rocks and carbonated beverages”
- Do NOT include spoilers, no matter how tempting it is.
An example of a tempting spoiler in a review would be “Darth Vader revealed that Luke was his son.” (No, this is not from an actual review—but it could be. It would be tempting to throw it in there, right?)
- Always be honest.
- Do say something positive—at least one little thing, no matter how small a point it might be. (NOTE: If you can’t do both #5 and #6, then perhaps you should reconsider writing this review. Remember, I said we’re book LOVERs not HATERs!)
An example of an honest, yet positive small point from a book review is: “catchy title”.
- Have fun with it! Here’s an example of a fun-loving reviewer having fun:
“Reading Queen is an absolutely scrumptious experience. Readers will fall in love, get heated, laugh and have an energizing adventure. The story has sublime settings, smooth writing that melds into a well-developed plot and characters who come alive like Pop Rocks and carbonated beverages” –from Romantic Times Book Review on Playing the Game
Now go forth and write pithy glittering reviews that could fly with the cow over the moon! (Was that too over the top?)
Umm. Myren tells me none of this is helpful to him for writing reviews—except the part about the thesaurus.
I said to Myren, “So? You didn’t think I was going to write a straight “how to” post did you?
Then he said…
NOTE: The argument went on far too long to encapsulate here. For more about the travails of being driven crazy by a recalcitrant cranky chauffeur, you might pop into Stephanie Queen’s website at www.StephanieQueen.com and sign up for her newsletter for a free Myren the Chauffeur story!