No, let me rephrase that, I love reading bad reviews. On anything. Books, movies, those toenail clippers for $.99 on Amazon… When given the option to filter reviews based on ratings, I go straight for the one-starred gems. I don’t know why, really. Maybe it’s because I am a cynical person. Maybe I just want to see what people really think of ‘Harry Potter’. Yea, sure, everyone likes it, but I wanna hear from someone who doesn’t. Or maybe, and this is probably the worst of all, I like to see things get knocked down a peg or two.
Does that make me mean? Yea, maybe.
But really, when I get down to the heart of the matter, I read bad reviews to learn. They say the squeaky wheel gets the grease for a reason. If you don’t learn what’s wrong with something, how will you know how to fix it? Or not to buy that particular wagon in the first place. Come to think of it, why are you even driving a wagon?
Back to my point, which is, I learn a lot from bad reviews. I love them, they make me laugh. Some of them do, anyways. Though I can’t help but get a feeling of dread as of late whenever I read them. More specifically, read the bad reviews on books.
Because, they make me nervous. They make me wonder if I have what it takes to actually write a good and compelling book. People, they are quite demanding when it comes to their fiction. Sometimes to the point where it’s a little scary…
Someday I will be reading my first bad review on one of my works, mostly with horror and a bottle of vodka at my side. It is inevitable. Everything gets a bad review sooner or later. But I will read it. (Even though I probably shouldn’t.) And probably agree with it and wonder why I wanted to get in this game called writing.
And hopefully my answer will be: Because I have to.
Writing is one of the last things in the world I thought I would want to do. I tried it in High School, thought I sucked. Tried it in college, thought I sucked. (Though one of my scripts did get picked…) But then I remembered why I wanted to become a filmmaker and I came to the conclusion: No, not filmmaker. Storyteller.
That’s what I signed up to do. No matter what the medium.
So, I started writing. A story that I had in mind for ages. And the kicker? I actually enjoyed this thing called writing. Am I any good at it? Who knows. Is my story any good. We’ll see. Will people enjoy my work?
Well, I’ll just have to wait for the bad reviews for that answer.