Wednesday, February 27, 2008

Reviewing the Truth

Dear Dead Beat,

I am a recently newly published writer. That bit I like. However, I got some reviews that were very disappointing. What do you do in situations like that?

Not So Tough.

Dear Not So Tough,

What do I do in situations like that? Dead Beat will have you know he has never had a disappointing review in his life. He's perfect, goddamn it, don't you know? The cheek.

Okay, okay, so bad reviews are par for the course (old golfer that Dead Beat is). But here, take some advice from William Faulkner, a well known practitioner of writing that invited bad reviews. And lest you think I am dissing Faulkner, nothing could be further from the truth. The reviewers didn't know what to do with him. More of that anon.

Speak to us William: “The artist doesn't have time to listen to the critics. The ones who want to be writers read the reviews, the ones who want to write don't have the time to read reviews.”

The thing is, the review is only as good as the reviewer, and there are some pretty poor reviewers out there. If you trust the reviewer, then by all means learn something from it - improve your craft. If they are not worthy of your trust, water off a duck's back.

But hey, do not... Dead Beat says, do not... confuse anger with lack of trust.

In any case, listen to the old man - get to your desk. You don't have time to read reviews.

As for Faulkner, he was too far in the future for any 'reviewer' to grasp.

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