Monday, June 17, 2013

Just a super small kine PSA:

For anyone who may wonder in the future when they don't get a response from me about a review on their blog/goodreads/amazon/any place at all:

I genuinely appreciate the time and money you have invested in exploring my creation.  I am in awe of the opportunity to contribute in even the smallest way to the human experience through artistic endeavor of any kind, and the fact that someone else is participating with me is beyond an honor.  Thank you so much.  I truly mean it.

I have chosen not to read reviews any more, no matter the author or arena.  I've found that the negative ones tend to undermine my ability to write, and the positive ones, no matter how glowing, are never quite enough to make me feel safe in sharing again.  It's just going to take a certain amount of bravery to get over it and put something out there; I write all the time, it's just publishing that reviews can make difficult.  So in the interest of continuing to do what I love and under the assumption that somebody out there might have been waiting to read what I happen to be writing--even if it's just the one person--I can't read reviews any more.  Thank you so much for your time.

Sincerely,
Jorja Tabu

PS: edited later to add: my earlier thoughts on writers writing and readers reviewing writing still apply; I wrote this particularly earnest post quite a while ago, but a lot of it still rings true (it is missing the phrase white privilege, and in not saying a couple of things more explicitly--about class and race--it didn't quite hit the mark, but whatever.  I'm not perfect, for damn sure).  I just don't have the thick skin I did then.

"And critiques are the lifeblood of hard-won improvement and true self acceptance.  When someone tells me my story is too long, short, shitty, wordy, pithy, slow, fast, boring, melodramatic, under-values the conflicts of interracial dating, over-emphasizes the conflicts of interracial dating, or just sucks, I have two choices: I can believe them and re-examine whether or not my writing achieved what I intended, occasionally making a minor tweak or two... or I can not give a fuck.  Sometimes, I do both. 

So leave honest reviews--of everything.  Demand the product you are devoted to be as excellent as you are--even if it hurts peoples' feelings.  Speaking as a writer, you as a fan are the most important person to me.  Your truth is more important than my feelings, and that goes double for random reviewers online somewhere.  Don't worry if other people don't like a book you do; it wasn't written for them.  And don't sweat the haters--like I said, they're still ringing in some click-throughs for those writers, and that makes indies like me smile wide.

I love y'all for supporting this genre.  I love you for supporting my best friend, and I am so grateful that people are passionate enough about writing to fight on the internet.  In spite of the sorrows of said passion, what the hell is this world worth without it?"