May 19, 2013

TSS: Looking Back at Old Reviews



Have you ever gone back and looked at the reviews you wrote during your first year blogging?  I did that yesterday and it was enlightening.  I found at the very beginning, which was January 2009, that I only wrote about a paragraph.  It was short, sweet, and to the point.  By the end of 2009, I had hit a stride and I was really enjoying writing the reviews and it showed. 


Lately it has become increasingly difficult to write reviews.  I don’t know if that’s because I feel like I don't write as well as other bloggers, or if it’s because I just can't seem to find the right words for what I want to say about a book, or if it’s because I'm just not back into blogging enough to have hit my stride once again.  Perhaps it is some combination of the above.

At any rate, I thought I would share with you some of the reviews I wrote back in 2009.  You can see the progression I make.  It's kind of interesting.






Have you ever gone back to read your old reviews? 

16 comments:

  1. Funny that you post about this because I've been going back and reformatting old reviews to look like my current reviews (for the sake of consistency). Anyway, I noticed the same thing about the content of my reviews -- originally I wrote 1-2 paragraphs and then eventually I hit a stride. Like you, though, I'm currently having difficulty writing reviews -- I'm just not feeling motivated to do so. For me, I just feel like my reviews have gotten stale and that I am just not as gifted a writer in terms of making my reviews entertaining to read. I have a feeling a lot of us go through this at some point -- I was talking with another blogger about this recently and I also recently blogged about trying to branch out from cranking out reviews to freshen things up. I guess it's nice to know I'm not the only one struggling with this, haha. ;-) Good luck to you!

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. I like reading your reviews, Melissa! I think every once in a while we need to just shake things up and try something new to keep us from getting bored, or stale like you said. Good job re-formatting old reviews. I'm not sure I have the patience for that!

      Delete
  2. I have gone back and looked at my old reviews and been so embarrassed by what I wrote! I can definitely see some improvement. I feel like my reviews are best now when I have strong feelings about a book, either positive or negative. The worst reviews are when I feel neutral about a book-I don't hate it but I wouldn't recommend it. Do you think that might be part of your problem when you're trying to write reviews now?

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Mediocre books are definitely the hardest, you are so right about that! I think lately I've been writing so many articles and I'm just not feeling inspired review-wise.

      Delete
  3. I, too, occasionally look back at earlier reviews....some are actually better than I thought they would be. But others...not so much.

    I enjoy most the ones in which I include favorite quotes, which is why I now write down some of those as I'm reading. Or bookmark them on Sparky, my Kindle.

    In 2010, I started a page of Books Read at one of my blogs, and linked to my reviews. I didn't do the linking at first, but recently went back to do so for 2010 and 2011 (2012 and on were already done as I finished the books). I'm glad that this is an ongoing habit now, as it was a pain to find the reviews later...lol

    Here's MY SUNDAY SALON POST

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. I noticed the same thing about mine, Laurel! I like the quotes. I like reading book excerpts and quotes on reviews so I had to ask myself why I wasn't including them in my own reviews more often!

      Delete
  4. My early reviews were short and sweet too. I'm not the best writer, but they got the point across. Sometimes I think I should go back to that type of review.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Sometimes I like reading that type of review. I'm considering doing it for books I just feel so-so about.

      Delete
  5. For 20 years I wrote regular theater and some book reviews for a daily newspaper (where I worked full time as an editor). What you describe I felt many times -- in cycles. There would be months when I thought I was just a grump and didn't like anything. Then I'd see something that swept me away. There would be months when I loved everything I saw -- and I wondered if it was just me. Then I would see something that was flawed. There would be times when I thought I had nothing to say -- but I had a deadline so I had to say something anyway.Once I picked up a 10-year old review and saw I had used the same phrases in it that I used the day before in another. OH the ruts of my mind!
    The good news is I got better and could think more clearly about my responses and I began to take more interesting approaches to my reviews.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Thanks for that, Barbara. It's tough when you go through a writer's block type thing.

      Delete
  6. I used to write better reviews when I had more time. Nowadays, if I list a book on my Read in 2013 page in a timely fashion, I am doing pretty good! And it's too bad because I read some pretty good ones that deserve a full review.

    ReplyDelete
  7. Im not brave enough to do this Becca. I've been blogging now for only 15 months so am still trying to get into the right tone and style. It takes me much longer to write a review than I really should spend but I often struggle to find the right form of words. maybe you can get out of your rut by developing some kind of structure that you use each time - and just fill in the blanks....

    ReplyDelete
  8. I applaud all of the book bloggers out there. I couldn't really write a good review, even if I tried. I'm one of those readers that falls in love with almost every book I read. It's hard to review stuff like that for me. Also, I feel really horrible when I say something bad about a book, because I know how long that author spent writing it.

    I love blogging, but my posts are usually teasers or upcoming book information. I've only been doing this for 4 months, so I haven't really gotten into a specific swing yet.

    You have an awesome blog, Becca! Your reviews are good! Just remember that you are your own worst critic!

    ReplyDelete
  9. I do, all the time. Mostly I do when I want to check previous reviews I've made of a series or an author's work that I'm writing a review on, just to see how my feelings have changed (if at all). I also think it's good as a writer to go over your old work sometimes to see what worked and what didn't.

    ReplyDelete
  10. I've only been blogging regularly for about a year (wow, a year this month, now that I look!) and I've already been surprised at how my reviews have developed with time. My entries are still pretty short, but I have a lot more to say now. I wonder what it will be like in a few years.

    My Sunday Salon

    ReplyDelete
  11. I have gone back and looked at my old reviews, and some of them are painful to read!! I hope that my writing has improved over the years!! :)

    ReplyDelete

Thank you for visiting! Leave a comment and share your thoughts with me!