Wednesday, September 25, 2013

18 Miles On A Tuesday, Goodreads Makes News, and I'm Gonna Be A Paperback Writer

I ran 18 miles
It was a sunny, 65 degree Tuesday afternoon with no wind.

And it was the most unremarkable, non-extraodrinary, 18 miles of my life. In fact, I have the urge to run the route backwards right now to erase each one of them from my memory.

Usually during a run of this nature, the angels descend from the heavens to sing secrets in my ear. The devils nip at my heels and mock my pace and my life. I rescue a burning baby or two. Epiphanies float in the air like dandelion weeds. But none of that. Maybe the running gods took the day off, because, who runs 18 on a Tuesday afternoon?

Still, I finished. Just pulling up one thighbone after another, trudging ahead with an imaginary foot of snow underneath me. 18 miles in the bank. I will need to withdraw that and more in a few weeks during the New York City Marathon.

Goodreads and Amazon
Over at Goodreads, there has been a ruckus over their new review policy, which I can only sum up as “don’t personally attack the author.” It has resulted in a ton of reviews being deleted without warning. With Amazon having purchased Goodreads, there’s all sorts of speculation going on. Here's at least one open letter to Goodreads that has received lots of attention.

My life would be much less than it is if not for Goodreads and Amazon. I love them both. They have  allowed me to connect with writers and readers that otherwise I would have not been able to. So, if they want to change the rules, it’s their ball and their playground, but I don’t necessarily like this. 

For one, I would truly hate for this actual review of my novel The Jade Rabbit to go away

“As an avid runner, it's easy to see the author knows nothing about running or training for a marathon, as the main character in the book is doing.”

A review belongs to the reader. You don’t have to justify what you say. “I read this book with my scratchy pajamas on, and damn if the author didn’t make me scratch harder. I hate their stinky ass” is a legitimate review of your experience. I can see personal threats as a problem, but beyond that, say what you will.

The policy seems way too author-centric and not reader-centric, which is who should matter. 

The paperback copy of On the Lips of Children is due out anyday now. But, you can win it before you can buy it. A Goodreads giveaway is underway.

*Here's the latest review from blogger Run Run Johnny *

From the first few pages, I knew this book was going to go someplace dark. Matthews uses his background in behavioral health to create a nightmare so real, you wonder how much is actually fabricated. Being a runner, I was happy to see the book have so many ties to the sport.

From what I've read on Mark's personal website, he is generally a funny, light-spirited person; not one you would expect to take you down a dark path full of evil, flesh craving demons. But he does, and he does it so well that I found myself sneaking a few pages at work, while playing with my son and even while cooking dinner. I couldn't put it down.

These type of kind statements will certainly put him under the radar of the Goodread police. So, go now, and enter the contest. It's as free and easy as a Tuesday afternoon 18 miler. Maybe even easier.


Goodreads Book Giveaway

On the Lips of Children by Mark  Matthews

On the Lips of Children

by Mark Matthews

Giveaway ends October 14, 2013.
See the giveaway details at Goodreads.
Enter to win


Johnny said...

I was wondering why I was getting some referral hits. I intended to put a blog post about the book up, but you know, life.

I did an early morning 5 on Tuesday sans headlamp. I also forgot they are redoing our streetlights, so we have none. It was really dark and of course T and Q popped into my head.

Thanks for the mention and congrats on getting the book in print!

Joy Killar said...

Thanks for bringing to my attention what is happening on GR and A ~ sometimes I think I must live under a rock.
I agree that the censorship of a reviewers thoughts is not ok. Is this another warning sign of the impending move to a totalitarian system? It is disturbing when single corporations are becoming Megalomania/media and these are further sleeping with the govt...
Time for all of us to start considering the rights granted to us in the Constitution and the Bill of Rights. We are a free people, living in a free nation- and we need to act like it.

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