Wednesday 25 March 2015

5 Things People Who Hate Writing Reviews Can Do

There's a general consensus that reviews are the least liked posts in the blogosphere. They're the posts that people skip reading, the posts that generally take the longest to write, and they aren't just easily plucked out of thin air, I mean, you've actually got to do an entirely different activity before you can even write anything, unlike discussions posts such as this that can go from idea to words in a matter of seconds. In fact, I've been seeing a lot of the same phrases lately concerning book reviews:
  • 'I'm never in the mood to write reviews.'
  • 'I just can't bring myself to sit and write them.'
  • 'I've got a backlog of reviews I just don't want to write'
  • 'I don't read enough to be able to create constant review content.'
  • 'Reviews are the least liked, so I like writing them least.'
The list could go on and on, but the general vibe is that reviews are demanding little buggers that want you to sit down and come up with fabulous words that will more than likely not encourage other people to read said book, because lets face it, if you haven't heard of the book, seen the book, or read the book, you probably won't be clicking that 'read more' button, will you?

But It's Not The End of the World!

Believe it or not, you don't HAVE to write reviews, not even for publishers. At least, not reviews in the way the blogosphere usually sees them, and I'm not talking 'book talks' or 'until it's here' posts that are basically reviews in a different format. No, what I'm saying is that you can actually do exactly what a review does, or in some cases, do better than a review, and still get your feelings about a book out there, without putting yourself in a downer about it. There are so many ways you can 'write a review' for a book without actually writing a review, and I thought I'd put some ideas out there for people struggling to share they're feelings, but wanting so much to do so.

Write a Letter to a Character

I've written two reviews, Deep Blue and The Rain, in the form of 'writing to the character' and they've been met with some pretty good reactions. Most people find that they can get a good sense of a character or a book through one of these types of posts because you're not looking for the next best word next to beautiful or horrific, you're just saying the words that come freely to you. Viewers find the interesting and much more honest and down-to-earth because what you've written is exactly how you feel, rather than tried to write a mature, concise, step-by-step review. Personally I can only really get my head around these types of post when I have serious issues with the main character and have a bone to pick, but I'd waver they'd be pretty good for contemporary reviews, since they are primarily character focused.

Write a Recommendations Post Ft. Recently Read Books

If you're a reader who doesn't like writing reviews but still wants to talk about the books you've read, recommendation posts are the best type of post to write. You can easily and quickly show off the books you've read lately with a short and snappy little piece about what you liked, what you didn't like, and what books you'd compare it to and tadah, you've got yourself a post with anywhere from 5 to 15 small but sweet review-like paragraphs that are actually quick to write, fun to do and will more than likely get your more views as the post in question will look more like a discussion than a review.

Make an Infographic or Image Review

Infographics and easily shareable images can get your content into nooks and crannies of the internet you'd never have considered before. They can shared much more easily on Twitter, Instagram and Pinterest, and while they're a little more awkward when it comes to sharing your thoughts with publishers or authors, you can find ways to include links to your image, or you can use key word and hope for the best, but if you're much more creative and artistic than you are literate and eager to write, it's the perfect idea. There are plenty of websites you can use to create and make these infographics and collages for free, and they can definitely bring something new and exciting to your blog.

Pro and Con That Baby

You don't have to go into huge amount of detail in reviews. I do, I just have a lot to say and don't shut up, but you might have read something and just gone 'wow, I don't know what to say, but I disliked those things, and liked those things'. Well than just do exactly that, you really don't need to talk about the characters and their lack or great development, or pick apart the world and how it didn't feel it was just there in mind, just say:
  • The ____ wasn't good, it was simple and boring.
  • So and so was frustrating and I wanted to strangle them.
  • What on earth was that plot twist? So not fair.
Just, go for it. Fire bullets through that post, be frank and honest. Don't faff with unnecessary words and paragraphs, don't feel as though you need to get into detail with everything, because you don't. Didn't like this? Say it. Absolutely loved that? Well than tell us. It's your review, do what you want.

Post That Review in a Giffy

If you like your gifs like you like your books, everywhere all at once and you can't get enough, then it's simple, just gif your way through that review. Bare in mind, some people might not particularly like this method, it can get a little, busy and take a while to load, but if it's what you want to do then do it, and sometimes, if you pick the right gifs, you can have a hilarious post at your fingertips without actually trying (although the time it would take to find the gifs could prove not worth the effort..)

The Possibilities Are Endless!

You don't have to write a review, you don't have to critic a book as everyone else does, in fact, if you do something different, you're bound to be noticed for that difference, and your idea might be so good, people will follow in footsteps. You don't have to write reviews, you should never feel obligated to write as other people do. Get creative, do something different, share your feelings in a way that works for you, and whatever you do, do not feel stuck doing something you don't enjoy.

Are you struggling to write reviews lately?

Have you been looking for any new ideas? How do you get your feelings and emotions out there?
What do you think of these ideas?


  1. Some of these are some REALLY good ideas! I really like the letter to a character one :)

    I personally really like writing my reviews because they let me vent everything all at once in one sitting, and then I move onto the next book. But a character letter feature might be fun to start doing a couple times a month just to mix it up a bit :D

    Thanks for sharing!
    ~ Liza @ Classy Cat Books

    1. Thanks Liza, I've done the letters before and they're pretty fun to do I find. It definitely brings something different to the table and you'd be surprised how many people get involved and share thoughts :)

  2. Some reviews are easier than others and if I'm having trouble coming up with what to write then I would definitely use one of these methods!

    1. That they are Lara, some just don't come at all do they, argh, but hopefully these ideas help!

  3. These are all really excellent ways to get people started Amanda, I think they're great even for newbie bloggers too! I'll definitely be sharing this for you :) I love the pro and con version and the letter to characters.

    1. Thanks Jeann, that meant a lot to share it!x
      I've seen so many people so negative, I wanted to bring some positivity to talking books again! :)

  4. this idea is pretty brilliant Amanda!!. I'm without a doubt one of those people who just don't like too many reviews, so I think for now on I might just write reviews for books I rate 4+ and have one post at the end of the month mentioning the ones I read below 3.5 or DNF.

    Really going to have to use some of these ;)

    1. Woo, thanks Stacie, you can always use the ideas anyway, always on hand ;)

  5. Replies
    1. Thank you lovely! The more reviews out there, the better right? :)

  6. Definitely bookmarking this post to come back to when I'm struggling with a review. Like Lara said, some reviews are easier for me to write than others, and sometimes these methods could come in handy! I especially like the infographic idea.

    1. Aw thanks Sabrina, as long as it helps, then my works is done as far as I'm concerned! Infographics are great for sharing quickly too, take up less space in tweets and can pinned and shared anywhere! :)

  7. Love it, Amanda! I'm in a bit of a reviewing slump (or slump brought on by lack of time?? I'd like to crack out something smashing soon though). Letter to the characters sounds fab to me! I may have to give that one a go, but I feel like I may get a little snarky har har.

    1. Thanks Jess! Snarky ones are best, they create the best reactions in readers I've found. Snark4eva!<3

  8. This is so cute! I will definitely save some of these ideas for rainy days. :)

  9. I agree with you that being creative with your reviews helps a lot. If you keep doing the same thing you will get bored, never mind your reviewers. One of my favs is a pros and cons list which I just bullet point and I find that so quick and easy to write. I also do twitteresque reviews which are reviews in 140 characters or less. And then I do the long ones where I spout every idea that came into my head. But it works for me! Great post and I love your ideas.

    1. Yeah, if you're bored, your readers will be too. I've rarely done lists myself, but the 140 characters or less sounds like an amazing idea, especially if you just want to be short and sweet, great idea Trish, and thank you! :)

  10. This is exactly the post that I needed! I have been struggling with writing reviews (I only managed to write one this month). I have been keeping my blog updated with other content, but I know that I need some kind of review post. I will definitely be using these ideas! I would love to mix up my reviewing style and this is the boost that I needed to start!
    Great discussion!
    Tessa @ Crazy for YA

  11. Yes. Yes yes yes. I am review writing burnt out. When I am really down or I am struggling with a review, then I do bullet point my review with likes/don't likes, and I seem to get a lot more feedback. In fact, it seems the more I break up my review, the better the feedback and comments. I have to admit - I enjoy chucked book reviews as well.

    I like the suggestions. I'm still hoping to find a permanent solution to book reviewing.


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