>I was reading one of the loops this morning, and came across a discussion on J.R. Ward’s Black Dagger Brotherhood books. The kind of discussion that strikes fear in the hearts of writers. LOL
Let me begin by saying I found JR Ward’s brotherhood books by complete happenstance one day in Wal-Mart (long time ago). Saw the second one in the series, bought it and read it…and to paraphrase Yoda “oh, so completely hooked was I.” The writing is truly astounding, the world-building unique, and the vamp characters…oh, so hunky! Love love love the books!
The amount of pressure on a writer when one book is so great, and then the next (in the series) is just as wonderful–well, it’s huge! How to keep producing stories that are not the “last book retold.” I myself have written only one sequel in my life, and I haven’t had the guts to submit it yet. I think it’s better than the first book (and that book did amazingly well), but then I see the kind of discussion going on in that loop, and it scares the crap outta me! LOL
Readers like that group of fine people are a tough crowd and give writers a lot to shoot for, which is a good thing. Writers don’t make it to the NYT Bestseller list by being mediocre. Some of the feedback in the discussion is invaluable (to me as a writer at any rate). Of course, I didn’t write the Black Dagger books…more’s the pity!
That said, I started to post a note on the loop then chickened out. I wanted to beg them for one thing, then thought they might not appreciate me putting my two cents in, considering I’m usually just a lurker on that loop.
So, I decided that on my blog, I can beg for anything I want:
Please, Be Nice. It really doesn’t hurt anything. Try to imagine that you wrote the story the next time you get ready to make a nasty comment on something. Words like “stupid” and “screwed” don’t really help, and they can hurt a LOT.
Everyone, of course, is entitled to their opinions. I love this country for that very reason. But, with freedom comes responsibility. Considering first what one hopes to accomplish by commenting would help: Do I just want to rant because I’m ticked off? Do I want this writer to go on to write more books that I will LOVE, or do I want to crush her spirit forever? Do I want to serve as the “warning bell” to anyone who might read the book?
I suggest nothing but this: Please, please please…consider putting yourself in the writer’s shoes for one short second, and imagine how you’d feel if you read a comment like “stupid waste of time and I felt totally screwed.” Yeah, that’s gonna leave a mark.