For What It's Worth

For What It's Worth

Tuesday, July 6, 2021

Tell Me Something Tuesday: Writing reviews

Tell Me Something Tuesday is a weekly discussion post where bloggers discuss a wide range of topics from books and blogging to life in general. 

It is co-hosted by (Linda from Book Girl of Mur-y-Castell, Roberta from Offbeat YA, Jen from That’s What I’m Talking About, Berl's from Because Reading is Better than Real Life  and me) 

Join in by answering this weeks question in the comments or on your own blog.

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Question: How do you approach writing reviews?

Answer: I do take notes while I'm reading but reviews have to just come to me. Sometimes that's right after I put down the book, at other times it can be up to two weeks before a review forms in my head. 

It's almost always at an inopportune time - like when I'm falling asleep or out hiking. 😭🤣 I use a note app on my phone and have pad/pens scattered around the house for when this happens because I will inevitably forget my brilliant post if I don't jot it down while it's fresh in my mind. 

As far as the actual structure, I don't have anything concrete there either (no surprise there lol). Some books lend themselves to longer reviews, some mini's and some fall in between the two.

No matter the style, I try to include my overall thoughts, pros and cons so the book might reach the right reader.

At this stage of blogging, I'm just trying to stay flexible and do what works for me at any given time. I feel like I'm mentioning the book so it gets it out there and (hopefully) my opinion comes through no matter the length of my thoughts.  


What is your approach to writing reviews?

35 comments:

  1. I LOVE THE NEW HEADER AND THEME. I hope your furbabies feel like celebrities now.

    I admire all you people who take notes, I just open wordpress and hope for the best lol.

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    1. Thank you!

      My notes these days are more like 1 or 2 sentences or key words lol

      Delete
  2. That banner is perfect! I like reading on my kindle because I can put the notes right in as I read. I find I don't really look at them unless I am struggling with the review. I was just saying to Roberta, my reviews are all how I felt and if I was entertained. I don't do any fancy analysis (I was an engineering major, not a lit major). I vary my style as well. The book and how I felt largely determine how I will communicate these things.

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    1. Thank you so much! It's been fun making all kinds of little sheltie graphics lol

      Yeah, I'm not very professional about it either. It's all about feelings for me.

      Delete
  3. I almost always take notes along the way (on the Kindle, in my Notes app, or handwritten). I wish I was disciplined enough to review immediately after finishing a book, when I can still clearly recall my emotions and how the story made me feel, but often it's weeks later.

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    1. I do take notes when reading on the Kindle. Audiobooks have been really interesting and present challenges for me. You can't take notes on the app and I'm often driving when listening so it's hard to even bookmark or remember things an hour alter.

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  4. That's such a cute blog header! I love seeing your pups on Insta. :-)

    I agree with staying flexible with reviews. After doing it for so long, I just want whatever the stress-free option is!

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    1. Thank you! I felt like I needed a new theme (or really - a theme lol)

      Same! I've been at this for so long that whatever is easy and fun for me is how I'll do it.

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  5. I take notes as I'm reading too. I usually write the review right after I finish the book though.

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    1. I can't write a review if I don't have any strong feelings and sometimes that means I need to think about it for a few days.

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  6. I usually write my review right after I finish, although there have been times when I let it percolate a while before writing- but not usually. That is, when I used to write reviews lol.

    Oh my gosh I hate it when I'm in bed and thoughts on a post come to me. I'm like seriously- now I gotta GET UP or I'll forget it by morning!

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    1. It's very weird how I can step away and weeks later I have a eureka moment where the whole review comes to me. Then I need to be near a computer or paper and get it out or it's gone forever lol

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  7. Okay, I love all the shelties on here! So cute.
    I got a physical book review journal this year that i'm trying to use for a lot of my reviews so I can write down my thoughts without waiting forever, which is what tended to happen because I'll go from one book to the next. hah Otherwise, I just try and share what I think people might want to know, pros and cons, etc.

    -Lauren
    www.shootingstarsmag.net

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    1. There's much, much more where that came form lol Someone needs to take that clipart away from me.

      I used to have a notebook specifically for reviewing but now that I'm mostly reading for fun, I just jot down a few notes so that it's low key.

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  8. My strict review rule which helps me is that after finishing I MUST log a book in on Goodreads and write a paragraph or two. That helps me put down a few thoughts which I can expand on in a review.

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    1. I do that for Netgalley books. And I have to read/review them before I can request another. I ususlly do 2 at a time but I haven't been requesting at all lately.

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  9. I haven't written a book review in a very long time but I feel as though my process would be very similar to yours. And I really hate the blog writing brilliance at the most inopportune times! That is the worst! I do tend to keep pens everywhere for just this thing, however.

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    1. I remember hiking once and my whole review came to me and I had nowhere to write it down lol I kept repeating it in my head over and over and told Kevin hoping one of remembered it. I did!

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  10. I find that my inspiration also can strike at any moment, but having firm deadlines with publishers also helps a bit. My most recent review eluded me until I connected the main message of the novel to a song from a musical. From there, it practically wrote itself.

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    1. I'm rarely taking review books anymore so that helps a lot. I did used to have deadlines when I did but usually read the book well in advance.

      That's what happens to me too. Occasionally, it will just flow but a lot of times something needs to trigger where I want to go with it.

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  11. Awesome new header :D

    Brilliance strikes! Love it

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  12. LOVE the new header! So cute! So, reviews, the bane of my existence 😂 I used to read books WAY too far out and then promptly forget every last thing about them. So now, I only allow myself to read them a month out. So I only have a MONTH'S worth of forgetting to worry about heh. I wing it, almost exclusively, tbh. I try to mark stuff on my Kindle if I think of it, then email it to myself. It's truly the only hope for coherence. If it's a physical copy... well, may the odds be ever in my favor, I guess!

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  13. I keep a sticky note with dates on my computer screen but really I don't have many review books anymore so there zero pressure or schedules.
    On the other hand, I often have nothing to post lol

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  14. I also always take notes while reading in the app on my phone, and keep notes of everything I have ever read on microsoft even if I don't turn it into a review. Like you, there's no structure to my reviews or anything. I just try and keep it flexible too.

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    1. We all have our methods it seems. I've started taking a few more notes on my phone, then I forget lol

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  15. I can't seem to pull off notes while reading - probably because I read a lot of audiobooks while multitasking or physically read until I pass out at night 😂. But I'm sure it really helps when you do write the reviews. I sometimes struggle with details like names!

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    1. I used to take very extensive and detailed notes when I was reviewing more. Now I just jot down quick things I want to remember or that stand out.

      I'm new to audio and find that really hard to do. Like you, I'm doing other things - mostly driving, and I can't stop for notes.

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  16. I've taken to scribbling down some notes while writing... Just little things that I like, don't like, impressions or how it made me feel... You've seen my reviews, I don't have much of a structure, I don't do analysis or lengthy recaps of the story, I just bash out whatever pops into my head and try to put it into semi-coherent sentences! lol

    I think you always get your point across when you write your reviews. :)

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    1. Thanks. I try but really, it's so subjective...I just say what I think and hope someone gets something out of it lol

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  17. I am so forgetful... If I don't write it down almost right away, it will be forever lost. I've been listening in the car at times, and will pull over the take notes. Or repeat something over and over until I can write it down.

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    1. I do the repeating thing and will type a note on my phone if I make it to a parking lot lol

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  18. I've never even thought about this. 😯

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    1. Ha! I mean, I guess I don't really do anything special either and wouldn't have thought about it myself with the question being posed lol

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