Am I the only one who is getting this?
People putting up reviews and comments on your amazon pages to stalk and dis you?
It seems pretty crazy and stupid for a writer to do because, you know, glass houses, payback's a bitch, instant karma, all that?
But it happens.
I have a guy right on this forum who keeps putting up posts accusing me and my publishers of all being the same people. It's no big deal in a forum, just lame bullies passing on their nitwit rumors, but when you start taking hacks at people by posting on the book pages, it crosses a line, I would think?
Or does anybody disagree with that?
I have this Brian A. Hoffman who pestered me here, then put up an amazon post on Feb 19 (which he ADMITS) accusing me of being my publisher at Adoro. It was removed.
Now there's a comment from him on the other publisher partner, accusing her of being me and him.
OK, so maybe that's not the end of the world, but is it a good idea to take a nicey-nice attitude towards this sort of thing?
What if you say something to irritate these fools tomorrow and get a bad review of a comment slagged?
I would think this is something writers would want to protect against.
But maybe it's just a peculiar problem from this site alone, and my own personal pet problem and nobody else had had it happen?
Any thoughts on this, or how to deal with it?
Oh, good. This shows up on Google.. Good. That's only fair.
Maybe crime writers have noticed something about people who get obsessed with accusations of others often have a lot of it around the house, themselves.
So, since this Hoffman is stalking me, I started poking into him.
He's listed as author of 18th Scroll as B.A. Hoffman, but there's no profile there. This from a guy who's got videos out there and all that.
And he says it's his first book, but shows a bunch of covers of other books under several different names on his profile. And does all these blog posts about how to write--a little presumptuous for somebody only recently published by a company that doesn't seem to exist.
So is he Brian Hoffman, B A Hoffman, Brian Allen, and also Brian A. Hoffman on amazon (which he seems to be denying).
And this is the guy who keeps posting accusing me of being a fake identity. And also Karla Telega, who is a partner in my publishers' company with years of background blogging, pictures online of her meeting with other writers at conferences.
I probably shouldn't go into my personal case to this extent here, but it's been boilng up and ticking me off for quite awhile. I'm just getting started in writing and don't like having that sort of crap on the web about me.
Meanwhile, the general question: what do writers do about this stuff? Or it not an issue for others?
Now there's an idea for a crime story right there! But seriously, there must be a way to report abuse directly to Amazon. Unfortunately the internet gives idiots complete permission to behave badly without repercussions. Same goes for so-called reviews. For example someone might give a book a star rating of one, and say why. That's okay. But when someone just give a one star rating, followed by the word "crap" that's just bad behaviour. Same sort of thing can happen in writing groups. Some years ago I posted a story on an SF critique group, which was enthusiastically recieved, with some constructive criticism that helped. One person who asked me to critique his story got some constructive comments from me...nothing major, just stuff I thought worth looking at. Well, talk about opening a can of worms. He went ballistic, and bad mouthed my own story big time, describing it is really nasty, abusive terms. A story which, incidentally, which one person said she "literally couldn't stop reading" and was subsequently praised by none other than Michael Moorcock. So, I guess, you can either ignore the bad behaviour or, as I said, try reporting such stuff to Amazon.
Michael Moorcock? Wow, impressive!
I don't have any problem with critiques. But an amazon review is a professional matter, I would say.
And yes. you can report it to amazon and get it removed. That's been done before with this creep.
This time not, because it looks like a little stiffer lesson is in order, and an example made, and it's just starting out.
What amazes me is that an author, if you want to call it that, would do something like that knowing their own title could be trashed. Repercussions do, in fact, happen sometimes. Get twenty one star reviews and bunch of creepy tags or something.
I think you can tell there's some directive agenda behind this post, because part of the problem is on this site.
But I appreciate you input to the more general question.
So what happened with the story Moorcock liked? That's a pretty special crit.
There's something to be said for ignoring the idiots also. As for the Moorcock praised story, it was originally on the Fantastic Metropolis website, then in their first anthology, "Breaking Windows: A Fantastic Metropolis Sampler" (Prime Books), then I put it in a self-published anthology (free until 31 July), Dr. North's Wound and Other Stories at smashwords.com. By the way, there's an audio of me reading it on the StarshipSofa podcast, should you be curious. And please don't let the morons get to you.
Thanks for the advice John.
Believe it or not, right now I'm kind of trying to raise their intelligence enough so I won't have to get to them.
That's quite a resume for a short story.
I took you up on your free book. Thank you. I'm not a big SF fan, though I'm starting to get a kick out of Steampunk stuff. Your embroideried cover there is AMAZING. It's lovely, clever work, but mostly it's just such a cool idea for something really different.
So here you are on a crime fiction site. What up with that?
Same for me, too, I guess. I am working on a crime book and series and all, which is why I signed up here, but keep slipping way towards other stuff.
Because I've got two crime novels coming out through Blackstone Audio, it's all there in my profile
Oops, missed that. Too busy on those links. Audio. Hmmm. I should probably take a look at that.
First story exactly like this I've heard of concerning writers, although I know many women authors who are secretive about contact info because of men stalking them, or their fear of it.
Not sure what I would do, although in the past, and on matters other than writing, I have spent too much time plotting and executing my revenge. I would have been better off just moving on. :)
Nasty reviews happen. Best to ignore the idiots. Amazon balks because everybody wants them to take down their bad reviews. People also get their friends and family to put up reviews for them. Thus, Amazon review sites are not altogether reliable. As someone else said somewhere, they wouldn't trust any author who gets nothing but 5-star reviews.
Really? Awww, I thought I was special. :-)
Thanks for mentioning that, Kevin.
I'm leaving it as it is for now. With a "better not be a next time" clause.
Interesting. I've never paid much attention to my first novel's one-star reviews. Obviously, the book didn't work for that person for whatever reason, and I have plenty of reviews from others who enjoyed it, so why should I care overmuch about what someone who didn't like it has to say?
But this discussion prompted me to see if there had been any chatter on my book's Amazon page regarding the reviews, and sure enough, there was. Only on the one-stars, which is interesting in and of itself, and mainly along the same lines as what you experienced: people claiming I write my own reviews, or get my friends to write them, and challenging the book's endorsements (which actually ends up being an attack on those most excellent writers as much as it is on me).
I don't know if they're failed writers or not -- they certainly sound jealous and bitter -- but clearly, the folks who didn't like the book feel the need to band together and pile on in order to validate their opinions, whereas the folks who gave the book 3 or more stars are secure in their opinions.
My second novel has nothing less than a 3-star review, and no chatter. Interesting . . .
So it isn't just me?
That makes me feel so... cheap. :-)
That's worse than what I was whining about, for sure. Knocking people who praise the book????
WHY? Would people do that? It's so weird.
You were able to get that stuff removed, I hope?