Hello and Welcome!

Red House Books is going through a bit of a update!

I've always had a pretty clear vision of what I wanted this space to be but I've been detoured from my path by...lots and lost of other people's opinions and ways of doing things...

I'm committed to this little chunk of the interweb but I've also branched out into other places so! Now it's time to think of Red House Books as more of a hub of all things me! And Me is a hell of a lot of book love!

Stay tuned!


Tuesday, November 27, 2012

Reviews and You - How do You Blog?

I have a system in place for review writing.

Ok...several systems.

OK! Maybe it's more like one giant system with a lot of moving parts that all work perfectly together.

You know, except when they don't.

I love to read - reading has never been a chore or even a hobby. For me, it's a way of life and I don't see that changing anytime soon.

Writing on the other hand was never something I excelled in. So when it comes time to get all those lovely little thoughts I have on a book out of my head, sometimes it's a challenge.

I TRY to write a review the second I finish a book. I close the book, get up, find my computer and write. I think this works for me because my reviews tend to be more about my emotional reaction to a book rather then it's form and function. I don't analyse style and literary markers - I like talking about how a book makes me feel. My reviews aren't technical and I don't think they ever will be.

So, what happens when I don't write up that review right away?

...bad things...very very bad things....

Ok, not really but it can be a challenge at times.

Today I'm asking you, as a blogger, as a reader - 
how do you handle your reviews?

Do you take notes while you read?

Are you always on the look out for nuggets of content from a book to add to your review?

Are you not even thinking of your review while reading?

As someone who really only writes when I'm blogging, I find other people's writing styles fascinating.

If you have a minute - drop a comment :)

I'll reply below and unless 'noreply-comment' makes an appearance, I'll email you back as well :)

Seriously, I would LOVE to talk to you guys about this!


  1. It depends on the book. Usually I will add status updates on my goodreads link, sometimes I use those comments and sometimes I don't. Sometimes I talk about them on Twitter (I met a couple of authors this way). Most of the time, unless something just slaps me sideways I don't write the review until after. I tend to write my reviews in a notebook as a first draft. Which is great, except I don't always make it to typing it for my blog. This kind of helps on slow reading weeks though. I have no system, no pattern, no method-just madness. I am hoping to get better in the new year. I will also be revamping my blog so maybe that'll help too?

    1. I always forget about status updates on Goodreads. I'm a little OCD about marking books as read and adding them to the correct shelves and whatnot but I rarely use the status updates -- good idea!

      I worry about waiting too long to write a review - and even though I keep a paper and an electronic notebook of books I've read I also worry about just plain forgetting I even read it if I don't get some thoughts out right away.

      I like my system but I also like being able to be flexible - madness works too :)

      Ooo - a new year's blog revamp? Sounds exciting! Hope you have fun with it and thanks for stopping by :)

  2. I take notes.
    The bad thing happens when I don't like enough a book to take notes and then I'm short on words.
    Then I sit down and free write all the things I think of the book. This usually helps me get going. Good luck!

    1. Notes are good! I am so bad with names - I like using post-its throughout a book to help me remember :)

      I'm thinking I need to be more flexible with myself - write what I want when I want it sort of thing.


  3. I try to write something down once I'm finished but as evidenced by the stack of to-review books next to me right now, I am not doing so good at that. In general I prefer the reading to the writing and blogging is basically my only writing time too. If something really stands out to my while reading, I'll mark that but generally I just rely on my own memory.

    1. I have a stack too! It's very large and threatens to topple off my desk at any movement now :)

      You know, I think I psych myself out too much. I always assume if I wait too long I won't remember enough of a book to write a review of it. I don't actually know if this is the case or if I'm just stressing myself out. I usually have a good memory when it comes to books (although, not names - I forget EVERY name!).


  4. I prep my post before I begin a book, then when I'm 25% of the way through I write the synopsis, and when I'm 100% I write my review. Yes, it's a daily process but I think my reviews are better because of it.

    1. Ooo - I like that! It's all about being comfortable with your own style I think.

      Thanks for stopping by Gina!

  5. I have finally developed a system that works for me...I have an outline, sort of, and...I fill it in as soon as I am finished reading the book...I hate retelling the book so I don't do that...I talk about the book...how it made me feel...what I loved...what I didn't love...I wrap it up and I am on to the next book!

    1. I like it!

      I do something similar with a type of review outline. I do almost everything electronically though and I'm starting to wonder if I should be writing more things down either as I go or just when I have the chance.

      Thanks for stopping by!


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