Diary of an Author, Day 4

Woke up. Googled self. Found new review of latest release, but the reader spelled my name wrong – the J is not supposed to be capitalized! E-mailed publicist. Asked her to e-mail reader, force a retraction, and demand public apology.

Refreshed review for an hour, waiting for correction and contrition. Finally went to Starbucks and made anonymous comment pointing out the spelling error. Sent irritated e-mail to publicist. Why do I have to do all of the freaking work around here?

Looked over story notes for WIP. Can’t remember the last time I had time to write. All the promo and online stuff is insane!

Google alert interrupted me when opening MS Word. A new review on Goodreads! About damn time.

…I got an F.

She thought the hero was an asshole.

Walked away from keyboard. Walked into kitchen. Looked at knife drawer and imagined stabbing my gut, which would have been less painless than reading the review. Then as I die I would write “I can’t live with an F” in blood on the cheap linoleum and then the reader would know that her review killed me and feel bad. BUT THAT WOULDN’T BE ENOUGH. Pulled wine bottle out of fridge, instead. Walked back to computer. Read review again, thinking that perhaps I read it incorrectly the first time.

It’s still an F. WTF? She still thinks the hero is an asshole. Well, that’s just WRONG.

Clicked ‘reply.’

M.B. wrote:
Thank you so much for your review! Sorry you didn’t enjoy the book.

One little thing, though — you state that the hero is an asshole, but that is addressed explicitly in the book. On page 374, the heroine thinks:

It was all so clear to her now! Lord Cockmonster wasn’t an asshole — everyone had misunderstood his nature!

So just a little correction, LOLOLOL. The line was probably easy to miss, but now that I’ve pointed it out, I’m sure it will change your opinion of him and of the book!


TheJealousCow wrote:
Thanks for your input, but I didn’t miss that line. I just didn’t agree with the heroine. My review stands. 

Best of luck!


M.B. wrote:
Um, how can it stand? I’ve just shown that it is factually wrong. It says in the book “Lord Cockmonster wasn’t an asshole.” Yet you still say he is? That’s like claiming that the Earth is flat after someone shows you a globe. 

Just sayin’.


TheJealousCow wrote:
It’s my opinion, based on the fact that he called her a whore and treated her like shit through 90% of the book.


M.B. wrote:
He did, but she fell in love with him anyway. Obviously, he’s not really an asshole … just as she (the person who ought to have been most bothered by it!) points out on page 374. 

Yet you stand by your opinion? Why can’t you just admit that you misunderstood the hero’s nature? It’s almost like you’re proud of being wrong.

AnotherCow wrote:
Oh, Jesus. Here we go again. When are you authors going to get it through your skulls that reviews are for readers? And that when you write something and put it out for public consumption, it will be criticized?

M.B. wrote:
Readers write reviews and put them out for public consumption, yet they can’t be criticized? Even when they are so obviously wrong???


AnotherCow wrote:
But the readers are the consumers. They aren’t putting out reviews as a product. You are, and if a reader doesn’t like your book, they have a right to say so.


M.B. wrote:
And if I was a reader who was pointing out how wrong this review was, would that be allowed? Or is it just because I’m an author that I have to shut up? Well, thanks for letting me know that I’m not allowed to defend my work, even when someone is writing lies about it.


AwesomeReader wrote:
I read this book and didn’t think the hero was an asshole, and have generally enjoyed much of this author’s work. 

I’m not sure that I will be buying her next book, though.


M.B. wrote:
Hi, AwesomeReader, and thank you so much for your support! 

And it’s true — you might have a difficult time buying my next book if reviews like this are allowed to flourish unchallenged on the internet. If readers think my books are full of assholes, then no one will buy them … and there goes my career! No more books from M.B., which punishes all of my fans.


AwesomeReader wrote:

Clicked away from Goodreads to check e-mail. Was shocked by notice of 35 “unfollows” on Twitter … but I was followed by 60 more people! Website stats are incredible! Received almost 1000 hits from Goodreads in an hour! Checked Amazon rankings — they are way up! Obviously a ton of people are supporting and agreeing with me, even if they don’t have the balls to speak up against everyone who is attacking me.

Saw e-mail from author I don’t know very well. Maybe you should step away from the keyboard and vent to your friends, instead? Hahahahaha! No doubt she’s just faking her concern and is jealous of all the attention I’m getting. I replied and told her that I have 2K friends on Facebook and almost as many on Goodreads, so I am venting to my friends.

Skimmed Google reader. Saw headlines like “Authors Behaving Badly” and “Don’t be like M.B.” and “Batshit Crazy Author Loses It on Goodreads” and “I’m sooooooooooo much better than that bad author!” and “Readers please don’t think we’re all like that!!”

Returned to Goodreads. Obviously, someone Tweeted the link. Almost 100 new comments had been posted, all of them hating on me, all obviously hoping that someone will “like” their comment, all trying to be so smart. Hahaha! Keep trying, you jealous cows!

M.B. wrote:
This is so stupid. I can sum up every post here as “But it’s her opinion” — even though most of you haven’t even read the book to know whether her opinion is valid (HINT: It’s not!)

Her opinion is WRONG, as I’ve proved over and over again! TheJealousCow says she “wasn’t convinced” by that line, and still thought that Lord Cockmonster was an asshole. WTF? Next readers are going to say “I wasn’t convinced Couple X was really in love, even though they said it over and over again in another author’s book.” WHEN WILL THE MADNESS STOP?

Why not take it a step farther? If you’re going to base a review and a book’s grade despite the words that are in the book, then why not just start reviewing and claiming things that aren’t in books? “This hero is a pedophile! It doesn’t matter that the heroine is 30 years old; he just seems like the molesting type to me!” or “This hero is a bigamist, because he already married a toaster!”

TheJealousCow wrote:
…I think you’ve completely missed the point.


M.B. wrote:
HAHAHA! That’s hilarious coming from you. You claim that I don’t understand something, when YOU are the one who completely missed the point in the book! LORD COCKMONSTER IS NOT AN ASSHOLE AND IT SAYS SO RIGHT ON PAGE 374!!!!! 

God, why do I even bother explaining it to you? You’re just a reader! You don’t know what it’s like to have your livelihood depend on selling your work – and then seeing some jealous cow try to destroy it all! You don’t know what it’s like to sit ALL DAY in front of a computer and toil endlessly for the right word, even though you get thirsty and maybe your back hurts and your leg goes numb and when you stand up you fall right over on your face but you KEEP DOING IT FOR THE ART!!

Is this what the world is coming to? People who think that they can judge ART written by aching hands in the same way a teacher judges a pimply-faced teenager’s paper? DO YOU NOT UNDERSTAND THAT OUR HEARTS ARE IN THESE BOOKS?

God weeps for you all!


Mick wrote:
As someone who used to pick berries all summer just to earn money for school clothes, and who had the aching back and ringing ear while doing the accounts and payroll for a construction company, and after sitting all day listening to suppliers yell “where is my money??” went home and still wrote the words I needed to write, I see your numb ass and tight shoulders and raise you with a FUCK OFF.

Everyone works hard. People read our books to get away from the shit in their lives, not to stop and think about how hard the author has it. So get over yourself.


M.B. wrote:
Oh, that’s right. Swear at me. That’s so classy. 

Good luck with your writing career. With that attitude, you’ll need it.


TheInevitableComment wrote:
I’ve never heard of this author before, and I don’t read in this genre, but I’ll definitely never buy anything with her name on it now.


M.B. wrote:
Oh, there you are. Jeez, I’m so sorry you feel that way. FUCK OFF.

EveryoneOnTheInternets wrote:
OMG! Another author goes crazy! When will they just learn to walk away?!

M.B. wrote:
You want me to walk away? FINE! But you’ll be sorry!

None of you realize it, but I have a million different accounts and a million different e-mails! You might think that there is wide diversity on the internets and in the book reading community, but the truth is that there are only about 10 real people and EVERYONE ELSE IS ME!! I have been to every Starbucks in five states, masking my IPs!! I am every anonymous author! I am every anonymous reader!!




And you’ll be sorry when I’m gone!

Flounced. Checked the clock. Too late to get any writing in today. Damn it.

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