Tuesday, January 22, 2008

We got email from Mark

Mark writes:
You know, I really wish you had open comments so I could post on your blog. Especially since you are discussing me. Twice. Yes, not only am I the blogger from markcarstairs.blogspot.com, but I also am the Mark you quote in today's post.
Mark, the message at the top on the left of our front page says that if you'd like to join us, send us your email. We can't allow unregistered comments because the next day the place will be spammed out of existence by the same people we're talking about. We were open for a while at first, and this precise thing happened. But anyone can ask for an invite to join as a named poster. Our asking for registration is simply a way to keep this blog clean of malicious interference: a named poster who becomes disruptive can, and will be banned. I sent you an invite to the address you emailed from.
First let me state, I have read every word on your blog. Heck, I link to it from my blog. I visit it most days to see what you are saying. And, as I said in my post which you quote (but seem to ignor), I have no use for Harriet either.
We didn't ignore this, but your beef with Harriet is based on a wrong thing, and I'll restate why: your problem is with the quality of her reviews; we believe she's evil because she reviews the books she didn't read and she reviews them all positively. The quality of her reviews is a very secondary issue; it is really a side effect of her modus operandi. By your logic, if she managed to post good reviews (if, say, her reviews were produced by a team of competent copywriters), you'd have no problem with her. We still would: she's a shill, regardless of the quality of her reviews. So, as you can see (and could see earlier, simply by reading our previous post), we did not ignore what you said.
I am not defending her, nor would I want to. I do believe she at least skims the books she reviews since I have read things in her reviews that are major spoilers and not on the dust jacket. However, those instances are few and far between and certainly don't defend her at all.

And obviously, I do need to apologize. While I investigated the blog you linked to that started my own diatribe, I couldn't figure out how many reviews the person posts every day. I jumped to a conclusion that it appears wasn't warrented. And for jumping to conclusions I do apologize.
Apology gratefully accepted.
However, let's get one thing straight. I post negative reviews. Your recent comment on the post that links to my blog inplies I don't. In fact, the second half of the post you quoted talks about some of the blowback I have gotten from a couple of my negative reviews.

And I am unattached to the book publishing business. I haven't even written so much as a short story that has been published, much less a book of any kind. And if you look at my reviews, you'll see I give a variety of ratings, more then normal recently. Yes, I tend toward the higher ratings, but mainly because I am picking what I consume and review, and that means I lean toward what I enjoy. If I don't like an author, I don't go back to them, for example.

You may post this on your blog, but please include my name and a link to my blog so people can judge for themselves if you do.
If you post negative reviews along with the positives, then it's obvious that what we said does not relate to you. We did include a link to your blog in the previous post, here's another one (is it the right blog though? :-)


Mark said...

Thanks for the invite.

Re: Harriet

I have a feeling that if she wrote good reviews, I'd feel like you do. But until then, I can't see around how bad they are.

Frankly, beyond the fact that her reviews tell you nothing, I don't even give her a thought. I just focus on writing my reviews and seeing how far I can make it.

Malleus said...

Welcome, Mark. Of course, but the quality of Amz reviews is a separate issue. Frankly, I'm not particularly interested in it: of course when lots of people write, most of them untrained, and quite a few downright illiterate, there will be a lot of bad prose. I'll live with this as long as the writers are honest reviewers, not publisher shills. Many more people post garbage reviews, not any better than Harriet's blurbs, but the do not appear to be frauds; even if some of them are, they're not nearly as brazen as our hero.