Tuesday, July 25, 2017

Tell Me Something Tuesday: Were You Hesitant to Give Low Ratings When You First Started Blogging?

Tell Me Something Tuesday is a weekly discussion post hosted by Rainy Day Ramblings where a wide range of topics from books to blogging are discussed. Weigh in and join the conversation by adding your thoughts in the comments. If you want to do your own post, grab the question and answer it on your blog.

This week's discussion question is:

My answer: I definitely was! To be honest, I still am in some ways. I always want to give books the benefit of the doubt, but sometimes I can't help but dislike them. When I first started blogging, I made a promise to myself that I would always be completely honest in my reviews, no matter how much I may have disliked -- or even hated -- a book.

I don't like giving low ratings. I know that authors work incredibly hard to create their books, and I also realize the impact of knowing that my review may or may not sway someone from reading their book. Because of that, and because I don't think it's right, I don't ever trash an author or their book. I'm not afraid to say what I really disliked about a book, but I will always try to do it respectfully. I also like to point that hey, just because I hated something in a book, it doesn't mean that everyone will.

The most difficult times I've had with low reviews is when it is for a book that an author specifically reached out to me with for review. I don't want to negate their hard work, but I am also tied to my own honest values and I'm not going to shelter my words or feelings. One thing that I have learned is that if my review is three-stars or lower I will not post a link on Twitter or tag the author or publisher. It's not exactly fun to receive a notification to a review that hates your book, and I've heard many authors on Twitter voice their desire not to be tagged in negative reviews, and I want to respect that.

Despite the fact that I do still hesitate a little, I will say that I have become less hesitant over time. I've spoken with authors about this before and they often tell me that although it might hurt a little to have a poor review, a review is still a review and it is (usually) appreciated all the same. Other bloggers have also helped me to feel more confident as I see other low ratings and reactions to my own low ratings. I feel much more comfortable and confident overall.

So yes, I was still hesitant, and sometimes I still am, but I know that honesty is incredibly important in reviews and I don't want to lie about how I feel about a book.

So now I pose the same question to you: Do you hesitate to give low ratings? Have your feelings ever changed?

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