What do you think?
Posted June 23, 2010on:
That’s right, today’s post is about feedback.
I just filled out a survey form today for the hotel we stayed at while we were in Chicago for the Printer’s Row Lit Festival. I filled out a similar one in February when we stayed at a different hotel in a different city for a different festival. It was very helpful that time. We got bumped from the rooms we asked for, and the room I got had a list of defects a mile long to it. So I listed them. Somehow the price of the room dropped by a considerable amount. Guess somebody checked. Maybe the last person to stay in that room didn’t fill out his survey.
But from an authorial standpoint feedback is important as well. I know I love to get comments on my work, especially when they’re positive. I even like to get comments on my blog posts. I can tell you right now, there is no bigger enthusiasm killer in any business than to put your work out there and get the famous cricket sound effect in response.
On a negative level, feedback is even more important. Editors do that for a living, after all, but so do book reviewers. I remember my first negative review, which seemed a bit over the top for my taste. The author seemed to be enjoying the mockery. But there was a point in there that was actually valid, and when I got around to re-editing the text I believe I removed it on my own, simply because of his comment. I decided he was right, although not necessaily for the right reasons. My first editor decided to simply remove a few pages of text without asking, a big no-no. But when I did my own re-edit, I decided she was right, although she was quite wrong to simply remove them. My friend Bryn has a lot to say on this topic too.
Back when I was eagerly awaiting the publication of Unbinding the Stone, I also discovered a novel by one of my favorite authors, Tanya Huff, called Summon the Keeper. I loved it (which is why I just put a link there, on her behalf), and since I was thinking how I’d like to have my readers tell me they loved my books, I decided to take my own advice and tell her what I thought of her book. Which was a good decision, since she eventually agreed to give me a quote for my book, which in my opinion is one of the best quotes I’ve ever seen on any book, not that I make a habit of checking quotes on books. I put her wonderful quote, and all the other quotes I receive, on my own website, MarcVunKannon.com.
Drop me a line, tell me what you think.