As most of you who are now following this blog can probably imagine it has been a crazy couple of days. Just when I think it is going to calm down something happens that keeps it going. I understand “going viral” from an entirely new perspective now. For the handful of people who followed me previously and haven’t gotten wind of what I’m talking about read the comments on this review. The first fifty or so should be enough. A few people posted about it on some internet forums and within a short time word was spreading throughout the internet via twitter, Facebook, forums, emails, and no doubt other avenues I’m not aware of. I thought it would be a good idea to give a run down on several subjects surrounding the entire episode. Many of my friends say I like to bloviate (look it up). Here comes a bunch of that.
Early on Red Adept, the Queen of Kindle reviewers, was kind enough to lend her support. I appreciate that and the many others with the kind comments via the blog, emails, Facebook, and twitter. It seemed many of you intuitively understood what I’m aiming for with this blog and are now following it through the many venues available. I appreciate it and hope you continue to like what I’m doing. Spread the word to your friends. I know, the whole world has done that already. :D
On the subject of Ms. Howett, I’ve already said most of what needed saying in my comments. Many of you pointed out the fallacy in her thinking it was my “fault” if she sent me a bad copy of her book, and many of you understood that despite not being obligated I DID get the newer version. Thanks to those who investigated and pointed out that the current version still had the issues I saw. Some think this was a planned publicity stunt. If so I wasn’t let in on it and question how successful it was. Her sales rank did rise, but I don’t believe this reflects that many sales.
There is a coffee mug some enterprising soul has made available immortalizing one of Ms. Howett’s comments, a youtube video, and write-ups on Slate.Com, and The Guardian website. The episode made the front page of Fark.com, and many other mainstream, non-book related websites. I’ve been happy that the commentary about me is generally positive.
One thing that rankles me is those posting 1 star reviews on Amazon, having not read the book at all. Those who read the sample and posted I have mixed feelings about. They at least had some basis for their comments. The technical issues I pointed out are apparent early on. Those who posted without reading at all are – I’d better not use any of the terms I really want. Unethical, rude, and inhumane are some more polite ways to put it. For the record I feel the same about 5 star reviews from friends and family who haven’t read the book or 1 star reviews based on price. I’m happy Amazon has weeded out most of the bogus reviews from Ms. Howett’s book.
I appreciate feedback. Although I hope everyone can see a distinction between a typo or grammar error on a blog and the same in a book, I’m still aiming for error free while realizing I probably won’t hit it any time soon. Pointing out those issues in emails or comments means I can fix it and potentially improve in this area myself. I freely admit I’m not perfect in this area. (I suspect concentrating on use, non-use, and misuse of commas would be the most fruitful area to explore.) Other feedback or suggestions are appreciated as well.
Last, if any of you are interested in “the numbers.” Prior to the Big Bang I was averaging about 50 visits a day. (Visits, not to be confused with page views, which appear to run between 1 and 2 average per visit.) My previous high was just shy of 300 visits last Friday when the negative review post was published. Monday I had 52, 000 visits, 194,000 on Tuesday, and as I write this with 4 hours remaining in Wednesday it appears I’ll come close to matching that. The number of followers (twitter, Facebook, and Google Friend Connect) was about 230 and has now climbed to 1,900. Links have been shared on Facebook in excess of 2,000 times and while I have no idea how many tweets have gone out, I would be amazed if the number isn’t many thousands. Not to mention a yet-to-be-determined number of book review submissions that is well north of 100. (If anyone is interested in an unpaid book reviewer position, email BooksAndPals(at)Yahoo(dot)com and tell me about yourself.) Authors and publishers who have submitted this week, I’ll be attempting to make contact over the next several days as I formulate a plan of attack for the crush of electrons in my to-be-read file.
To say it is surreal and a bit overwhelming (in a good way) is an understatement. Thanks again for all your support. I hope everyone will keep coming back. I am optimistic the future of this blog will meet your expectations.