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When life gives you lemons...


frostokovich, who posted about this over on TheWritersCoffeehouseOnline Yahoo Group.


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( 28 comments — Leave a comment )
(Deleted comment)
jongibbs
Sep. 8th, 2009 03:22 pm (UTC)
I'm a big fan of self-effacing humor. I liked this trailer a lot.

Also, I imagine it's a rare book that gets only good reviews. Besides, we've all of us read books and seen movies that were way better than the critics claimed.

Sad to say, the opposite of that last sentence is all too often true as well :(
karen_w_newton
Sep. 8th, 2009 03:30 pm (UTC)
I think it's a smart move partly because it so firmly highlights the fact that a review is someone's opinion-- nothing more, nothing less. I went to Amazon and got the list of reviews for THE DA VINCI CODE:

3,939 Reviews
5 star: (1,601)
4 star: (659)
3 star: (545)
2 star: (415)
1 star: (719)

So, approx. 2/3 of readers have it either 4 or 5 stars, but over 700 people only gave it one! And yet I doubt Dan Brown is losing sleep over those 719 opinions.

You can't make bad reviews go away, and publicly calling reviewers names is probably the only true bad publicity. Besides, I think having kids recite those harsh words makes the reviewers sound rather pompous.



jongibbs
Sep. 8th, 2009 03:33 pm (UTC)
Yeah. I think using kids and his grandparents was a clever idea.

Thanks for the research info too. That's definitely above and beyond. :)
alaneer
Sep. 8th, 2009 03:41 pm (UTC)
I mention negative reviews as well as positive ones. I think the reviewer, for taking the time to review the work, has earned it.

It was definitely a good idea.
jongibbs
Sep. 8th, 2009 03:48 pm (UTC)
And clever too. I like people with a sense of humor about themselves. I may even check out one of his books.

Thanks for sharing :)
maryjdal
Sep. 8th, 2009 04:18 pm (UTC)
His grandmother was great. I think it was a good idea. I don't know this author's work, but he comes across as likable. I like his humor, and although it doesn't make me want to buy this particular book - I now want to search his name on Amazon and see what else he has. Or to see if there were good reviews to balance those negative ones.
jongibbs
Sep. 8th, 2009 04:23 pm (UTC)
His old gran reminds me of mine. Maybe that's why I like this ;)

Thanks for sharing :)

PS: Sorry about having to ask you to do your puddle vote again :(
medwriter
Sep. 8th, 2009 04:31 pm (UTC)
The trailer is great. My first thought was how wonderful it is to receive this many reviews from top sources. It didn't matter that the excerpts were critical. Then I checked the book on Amazon and decided to add it to my list based on the premise.
jongibbs
Sep. 8th, 2009 05:20 pm (UTC)
When you've read it, I bet that would make a great blog entry (not just your review of the book, but how you first heard about it on a self-effacing trailer) :)
(Deleted comment)
jongibbs
Sep. 8th, 2009 05:22 pm (UTC)
When I was with Gentleman Jones, our entire website was based upon (mostly) made up negative criticism :)
txtriffidranch
Sep. 8th, 2009 04:48 pm (UTC)
Hell, I put the bad reviews on the front covers of my last two books.
jongibbs
Sep. 8th, 2009 05:24 pm (UTC)
When I sell a book, I'd like to put my most scathing review on the cover too, but my old gran won't let me use her work :(
txtriffidranch
Sep. 8th, 2009 05:43 pm (UTC)
My grandmother had those scathing reviews, too. There are times where I suspect she died solely so I might take the hint and bother someone else.
(no subject) - jongibbs - Sep. 8th, 2009 05:50 pm (UTC) - Expand
bogwitch64
Sep. 8th, 2009 05:26 pm (UTC)
I know the name, but I can't say I've read any of his work. I do admire someone who can take a negative and turn it into a positive, though. I thought it was pretty funny, especially his grandma.
jongibbs
Sep. 8th, 2009 05:30 pm (UTC)
They all looked like they had fun. I wonder if the old guy was a relation too.
bogwitch64
Sep. 8th, 2009 06:12 pm (UTC)
Probably old gran's beau. ;)
jongibbs
Sep. 8th, 2009 06:15 pm (UTC)
Hah! My old gran had one of those. Luckily, she'd lost her arrows years before ;)
dferguson
Sep. 8th, 2009 06:07 pm (UTC)
When somebody reads your book they're giving up something more valuable than the money they paid for it. They're giving up time out of their life that they'll never get back. To my mind that entitles them to say anything they want, bad or good. And reviews, good or bad I accept with graciousness and thanks.
jongibbs
Sep. 8th, 2009 06:14 pm (UTC)
That's a fair point, though I don't think Brad was being at all ungracious, do you?
dferguson
Sep. 8th, 2009 06:28 pm (UTC)
Oh, not at all! I was just spouting off on my own personal view concerning reviews. I think the video itself is genius and it makes me realize that writers perhaps don't take as much advantage of The Internet to promote their work as creatively.
kellyrfineman
Sep. 8th, 2009 07:42 pm (UTC)
I saw that a while back. So effing brilliant. Reminds me of the episode of Slings & Arrows where the advertising company decides to take out ads full of negative reviews as part of their rebranding campaign. Only in Brad Meltzer's case, I think it actually makes a positive statement.
jongibbs
Sep. 9th, 2009 06:15 am (UTC)
I think it works because he embraces the criticism so completely and has a laugh about it. I admire his attitude :)
(Deleted comment)
jongibbs
Sep. 9th, 2009 06:31 am (UTC)
I'd be interested to know how it affects his book sales.
handful_ofdust
Sep. 8th, 2009 10:48 pm (UTC)
I went out of my way to buy a U.K. copy of Ballard's Crash which has nothing but excerpts from bad reviews on the front, back and inside the fly-leaf. Because this is Crash, the reviews are pretty virulent--hilariously so--and because it's Ballard, people are still struggling to at least sound interesting while dissing him. (I also recall a few movie campaigns in which post-release ads featuring nothing but bad reviews [because there WERE nothing but bad reviews] were used to at least get people to go: "Well, shit, it can't possibly be that bad." Funnily enough, however, I can no longer remember what the films in question were, so I suppose the ads didn't work quite as well as they might have.)
jongibbs
Sep. 9th, 2009 06:53 am (UTC)
I imagine they could do the same for The DaVinci Code (though personally, I really liked it).
dynastic_queen
Sep. 11th, 2009 03:14 am (UTC)
By the time his grandmother identified herself, I was laughing. The dog was the icing on the cake. I have to admire this strategy. I mean, what did the guy really have to lose? And he probably gained a LOT more people buying the book--you know, the old psychological switcheroo.

Hilarious. I liked.
jongibbs
Sep. 11th, 2009 06:57 am (UTC)
It certainly got my attention in a way that slagging off the reviewers wouldn't have done :)
( 28 comments — Leave a comment )

Things What I Wrote and Other Stuff

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