I sometimes worry if I am too Harsh (a BLAGH post)

What is a BLAGH post you ask? Well, I am feeling blah today, and this is a blog, so I combine the two words and get blaghhhhhhh. I am not a clever man.


Tomorrow my review of A Vanish Glow goes live here on the site. You can read it now however if you go looking on Goodreads or Amazon.

When I posted it, Sci Fi and Scary went and saw it (Cause Goodreads links to Twitter ect) and then had the following to say:

3 new butts

Yea. That happened.

If you are curious I suggest you go read the review on Goodreads.

But this made me worry. Was I too harsh? I mean, I wasn’t that mean in my Banished of Muirwood review, but you could say I was in my Deadlands review. Its a fine line to walk. On one hand, I am a firm believer in writing about my honest feelings and thoughts. I don’t want to sugercoat things or waffle about, but at the same time the author is still a person. And I know enough about being bullied growing up that I don’t want to come off as being a bully or hateful.

Harsh truths still need to said. If a person wants to improve then things that are both good and bad need to be pointed out.

But at the same time, at what point does something become too harsh?

Its something I am congizant about but hadn’t realized I was doing here. I would not change what I wrote (and in fact, the Author thanked me for the the review!) but I was worried.

Here is the email I got from Alexis:

Hi Clay,

Thanks for the honest review! I just finished reading it.

I appreciate the in-depth analysis and look forward to working through the rough patches in the sequel.



And then she added:

Oh, just an additional note — the HTML on the Amazon review is displaying the full markup for me (they may prevent using HTML tags in Amazon reviews), so you might want to edit it to omit those!

Yea, I forgot about that too haha.  At least she wasn’t mad at me.

I am really not even sure where I am going with this. Just blah thoughts for a blah day to make a blagh post.


13 thoughts on “I sometimes worry if I am too Harsh (a BLAGH post)

  1. The author reacted really well, that speaks volumes about her already, and the fact she is taking her readers into consideration is a big step to improve whatever might have missed in her first approach. I personally didn’t think it was harsh, you were honest, you were not rude or anything and you acknowledged her potential. Plus, it’s only one opinion. She only has to worry if a pattern is noticed. For now, the world isn’t going to end. (NOT saying your opinion isn’t important, but you get me :P)

    Liked by 2 people

  2. I totally get where you’re coming from, though. Harsh reviews aren’t necessarily coming from a place of malice, but appreciating the art enough to understand and point out where things could be improved. Kudos to both you and the author in being so professional and classy! I just posted a not-so-fluffy review and my author responded in kind to yours. Glad to see there’s a lot of mutual respect going on. (:

    Liked by 2 people

    1. I completely agree with you, onlytruemagic. When the criticisms turn nasty, picking apart personality traits or things unrelated to the work, or tearing it to shreds based on extraneous factors, then the review has kind of lost its way (it’s not longer about the book, but rather about the reviewer’s dislike of the person who wrote it for whatever reason, or perhaps political bias against the themes/leanings of the book causing them to be riled up against it despite the book’s merits).

      That’s not the case here. You (Clayton) have honestly and fairly shown the author some flaws in their work, which can lead to its improvement. Gushing about every book is not going to do anything for your credibility. Having high standards but approaching things that don’t meet them in a mature and professional way, for the good of the art, is where the true skills come in.

      This author’s reaction to the criticism would make me, as a reviewer, consider reviewing her future works (to see if she’s improved) even if I didn’t particularly enjoy this one. Someone who takes artistic criticism personally or who responds rudely to the very honesty they asked for is crossed off my list…

      So, good on ye both.

      Liked by 1 person

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