Ok, I've kept my WtW? posts a little quiet. I don't know if they do any good or if I'm talking to myself. Oh well.
This week I wanted to touch on something that's near to me and a pet peeve.
I totally get that you want to write a review. Why? You want to share your feelings about what you read. That's great. You might not like it, you might love it, but you want to share.
What I have a problem with is this: if you can't say something nice, even if you hated it, then don't say something at all.
I'm not saying you CAN'T write a review. Heavens no. I'm saying BE CONSTRUCTIVE.
There are many times when you won't like a book, microwave, television show, CD...etc. Things won't always be up to your version of par. They may be too low or may exceed. Who knows.
If you say something like, this was too short and I don't know why I paid so much for it, my first thought to you is, didn't you do some research first? Most sites, stores, etc. will tell you about the product, be it a short story, a low grade microwave or a new innovation in fridges. Go to the site, check out the vital stats.
But don't hate on something because it's short or because it was junk.
Tell the manufacturer or the author or the company WHY you didn't like it.
"The cord on the fridge is short. You might want to measure the length of the fridge placement to the outlet first." OR "The ice machine is loud. Only a little insulation around it. A little more and this would be a great machine."
What about: "This is a short story, no doubt. At 34 pages, I knew I wasn't going to get something in-depth, but if you want a taste of the author's work, this is something to get." OR "This book has lots and I mean lots of sex. If you're looking for something to spice up the night, this would be perfect. If you're looking for something more inspirational, you might want to skip it."
Gets the point across and makes YOU the reviewer look like less of a fool.
Here's a great example. I went shopping for a new laptop. I looked at lots of laptops, lots of sites pertaining to laptops, and LOTS of reviews. Now, the funny part is this: if you go hunting for a laptop, there are quite a few to choose from. If you go to say Best Buy and look at them, you can see which have a matte finish, shiny finish, removable top, extra number pad, etc. For the laptop I ended up getting, there were reviews like this (and I am not kidding)
"Shows fingerprints really well. Not aesthetic. 1 star of 4"
Um...ok, so I know there will be fingerprints. Fine. But...does it work well? Enough memory? Does it get hot fast and need a cooling pad? Battery life sufficient?
That wasn't touched on. Nope. All I saw was that there was lots of fingerprints, the person had sour grapes and they wrote a review reflecting that.
I probably sound like a broken record, but I look at it like this: no one wants to hear bad things, but we all have to here and there. No one wants to have their work rejected, shunned or labeled as insufficient. But that doesn't really give you the right in this day and age of immediate feedback to be mean or hurtful. You're not going to attract flies with vinegary words and you won't endear yourself to anyone with meanness. You won't.
I could've been really nasty in this post and still gotten my point across. I didn't. Why? I'm trying to show that if you're positive in your need to be negative, the author, company, manufacturer, etc. can learn and GROW from it.
Just think about it.