Reviews for The Feng Shui of Review
Gossamers-ink chapter 1 . 9/3/2012
Wow, this was very enlightening (as someone who only recently joined the site) and definitely good advice. Especially avoiding cliches and reviewing as you go. I've had english teachers break some of these review guidelines (namely the repetition of the same critique such as they're/their/there). I would add, however, that people shouldn't bee afraid to erase part of their review, especially on the cliche or confusing bits, if that aspect to the story changes later.
Jesus and his Lawyers chapter 1 . 7/24/2012
Lol, I'm glad someone finally wrote this. reviews are a bit of a touchy topic on an online publishing site this, as most people have varying opinions on what constitutes a 'good review'.
Anyways, good job!
Abbytjie chapter 2 . 4/28/2012
I love the way you set this out, and you're very good at explaining things on a realistic level. I have no CC to offer you, simply because I find no fault.

I am a bit of a 'meh' reviewer and I'll remember to give better reviews from now on, thanks to you.

PS: I would love to be in Pay it Forward.
thetabbykitteh chapter 1 . 4/26/2012
This was a very informative guide, however, I would like to know more of why returning reviews is considered a good thing. I myself usually thank my reviews, but I hardly ever return reviews to them. Am I doing something wrong? I do review a ton of people who have work in the just in section though.


-((To attract reviews, returning reviews is usually a good policy.))

Love-Missile F1-11 chapter 1 . 4/14/2012
This was useful.

Although you could have mentioned something about those "Review games" forums, where each person has to review the person who posted before. Sometimes is the only way to attract attention among this huge ammount of fics.
Vivace.Assai chapter 2 . 2/24/2012
I've been reading some of your essays, and this one was definitely interesting. I feel so enlightened after reading your essays since they carry such interesting (and rather true) knowledge and ideas. Reading this one about reviews really did help me get better as a reviewer, and I thank you for sharing this with us!

Signing off...
Silverleaf of the Forest chapter 2 . 1/4/2012
I'm afraid I'm often guilty of 'meh' reviews. It's rare that they're only a sentences long, but so often they are full of those random 'I like peanut' comments. I am getting better, I think, and hopefully this guide will help too!
Silverleaf of the Forest chapter 1 . 1/4/2012
I never thought about it before, but you are so very right in your opening when you say that "it is ironic that, in a day when so many people would rather talk then listen, so few people review Fictionpress stories yet still clamor to hear commentary on their own work." Huh. I'd blame laziness more than anything else when it comes to my semi sporadic reviews.

Your advice on giving reviews is really helpful, and when I saw it I thought about opening up a review box but decided against it. For me, that takes away from my enjoyment of the story, or, in this case, essay, and I give that a higher priority than reviewing. I usually read through once and then skim over a second time as I review.

What you said about names is also true. In fact, I was drawn to you in part by your name. I wonder what my name says to other people?

On a different note, are you still returning reviews four years after this was published? If you are, I would appreciate you looking at "Rathsmantha."

Thank you!

The-Paigey-Pooh chapter 1 . 11/15/2011
This review on reviews ( to be deviously redundant) is what I hope can meet some of the "guidelines" that you implied! And, quite honestly, I realized how lacklucter some of my reviews have been lately, and I put myself into the shoes of the fellow author recieving them, and thought 'would I be impressed/educated/entertained by this?' ... and came up with the conclusion, that , no, I would not. Thus, I would like to thank you for adressing something that, although disappointingly prominent on the site, is a fairly original issue as of itself.

Best of luck with all of your writing and thanks again for the fantastic wake-up call on my 'reviews' and their quality! :)
Grimpeddler chapter 1 . 11/13/2011
I think you are extremely smart. That sounds like flattery dribble but it's true. I never though about keeping the review window open while I read a story. I think that would take away from the story though; I like to enjoy stories while I read them. Personally, I hate it when I go to return a review (I usually do that) and every story that person has written is sixty chapters long (That has happened many times). Of course, I agree with you though. I hate it more when every story someone has is too short. Boy, I am such a hypocrite for that. XD I get very frustrated on this site because nobody thinks about reviewing; they only think about getting reviews. On , I got about 24 reviews for one of my stories. You wanna know the biggest number of reviews I've gotten here? Three.

This was great to read, and funny too. Please review me back, any story that doesn't have a review would be nice :)
Radielle chapter 2 . 10/17/2011
You know what, I've printed this short essay of yours and stuck it on my writing wall. It's my way to keep what you've said in mind, both when reviewing and reading what others think of my work.

I would welcome the review you've offered in chapter 1, but you don't have to. By the look of your profile, you're as busy as I am these days. Good luck in your work!
Raven of the Shades chapter 2 . 7/26/2011
Wow. Actually, I didn't realize it until recently, but I am a giver of "meh" reviews. Good job on this!

Also- This is kind of a random question, but why did you call it the Feng Shui of Review?
disrhythmic chapter 2 . 7/25/2011
Oh, so brilliant. I agree 100%. I've only been on this site for a few days and I've already met three awesome just from review replies that turned into conversations. :) Brilliant advice.
Nikou chapter 1 . 6/1/2011
Very good tips on how to review. I am brand new to fictionpress, and haven't been writing for a while. It is nice to find so many interesting stories, and it has inspired me to start writing again.

As for the review tips, I have done a lot of reviews for other sites, and have my own formulas for reviews, though it is harder to bring them over to fiction reviews. I firmly believe in not slamming a person even if something is terrible.

Here is my formula:


How to improve

Compliment, and keep up the good work.

Obviously that is the very short version, and it can run into the hundreds of words (especially that middle part... jk). I find it is best if you search hard for a positive BEFORE you start looking at and talking about the negatives. Otherwise they tend to eclipse any positives present.

(BTW my previous review work was for people just learning English, and I would review their written answers to open ended questions designed to utilize the keywords they had just learned. You wouldn't BELIEVE some of the crazy grammar, misspellings, and just plain odd unexplainable word choices I saw!)

So overall, I thought this was an excellent essay, and gave me some brush up on my review skills. This is only the second review I've written since arriving on fictionpress (2 days ago), and it has invigorated my desire to do more.

Favorite tip: Open the review box BEFORE beginning to read and then review as you go along. Duh... Why didn't I think of that before? I've not wanted to do reviews after reading thousands of words because I don't want to go back through looking for the things I vaguely remember wanting to comment on. Great tip. Thanks!
Serendipital chapter 1 . 4/13/2011
Oh! Um...gah! I feel selfish, asking for a review on my story, FREAKS, BUT FAMILY...

I really loved this guide. I've always had trouble with reviews, wiether it was because of not wanting it to sound like a flame, or not being able to give constructive criticism at all. So, here I go...this is, frankly, awesome. I laughed quite a bit throughout it, especially at the 'Sage says' part. You didn't flat-out say that most reviews suck, which I appreciate. Also, you gave some encouragement, which actually helped me with my 'no one reviewed on my story, so I shouldn't even update another chapter' problem. So...thanks. My gratitude is larger than words, so I shall give a nervous 'meep' and leave. Bye!
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