Sunday, September 20, 2009

To thine own self be true...

I've received another so-so review. Somehow, the so-so ones are more paralyzing that the really bad ones. What I find really puzzling are the books by other authors that received five star reviews--when I found myself disappointed in those same books. Hmmm.

Anyway, this isn't about other author's reviews, or for that matter, even my own. This post is about the no-man's-land where my writing is currently lost. I'm not sure whether it's because I'm recovering from the flu, or because I'm distracted by family issues, or because I'm thinking about meeting my fellow authors at a convention, but the writing is dead.

I admit the review didn't help. Not because it was a so-so review, but because I'm having a hard time trying to decide what I can learn from it. I always try to learn something positive from my reviews. And this one... well, I'm not sure how to "fix" the next book based on this review.

Every author I know is constantly striving to improve their writing. That's what I do--work hard with each succeeding book to make it a better story with memorable characters and an interesting plot. For some reason, I'm stagnating and moving backwards and I can't quite figure out why.

Perhaps its because I'm torn between two goals: improve the plot/story line or have enough sex in the story to qualify for submission to the on-line publishers. There's a sharp line of demarcation in the publishing field. Sex or no sex. And once again, I find myself somewhere in the middle--sort of uninterested in the excessive kinky sex that seems to be the requirement now, yet not really interested in the closed bedroom door of the old days.

Perhaps like old Will Shakespeare said, "To thine own self be true, and it must follow, as the night the day, thou canst not then be false to any man." Have I lost my way?

For that matter, even if a publisher buys the story, will readers want to read it? Or will they be disappointed with the new and improved author? What do you think? Is less, more?



  1. Don't change the way you write! If you're not comfortable with it, the readers won't be either.

    I'm a devoted Anny fan, and am hoping I get to meet you next year:)

  2. Anny, in my opinion, adapting to market changes and pushing to learn new things are important, but you are the artist. Create what feels right to you. We, your fans, will continue to read and enjoy your books the second we can get our hands on them!

  3. Anny, I'm new at this but I'm pretty sure you don't need to learn anything from a "so so" review. This is one person's opinion and that person could have been having a bad day or just not into whatever plot/characterization or setting that you used.

    Get some rest, drink some orange juice and pretend you're Scarlett O'Hara and think about what you want to change when you feel better--you know, tomorrow is another day;-) me, you don't really need to change a thing!

  4. Well, reviews are just opinion and no worth getting down over. Be it a 5 or a 4 or 3 star's just one person's thoughts and not fact. You know your strengths and you write better than 95% of the writers I know. I tend to believe you have too much on your plate at the moment and this just added to it. Let the so-so review go does not define you

  5. I read that review, Anny, and the reader most likely had NOT read your previous book where these characters began. I used to get so frustrated with JK Rowling because she re-explained everything for new readers...but she was doing that to prevent people like your reviewer from hamstringing her. LOL! Your books are fabulous, and fun.

  6. You have a LOT going on right now, Anny, so don't be hard on yourself. My advice? Don't change a thing about what you write or how you write it. You're a wonderful writer/storyteller. I suspect we'll all be anxious to get back to our writing once we are home from Romanticon.