A while back I went on a date with an actress who seems to have a great personality, but also seems a little bit ditsy (in the most endearing way possible, meaning she's also very sweet). I just found out she authored her first book recently, which she's been working on since she was 12. She has asked me to attend her book release, and I'm in turmoil.
I read a ton, and am extremely critical of all literature, even from distinguished authors, so how am I supposed to react if the book is far below my standards? I don't want to lie to her and lead her into a dilusion, but neither do I want to crush her spirit or make her cry.
The digital book has been on amazon for about a month, but has yet to receive a single review. What would you do?
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Say nothing at all... Like, seriously, just don't say anything. At most just nod and smile.
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Try to be nice and honest at the same time: (This isn't actually possible, so by choosing this option I'm really just saying "I don't know"/"Show Answers")
Tread carefully lol. I'd pick out specific parts of it you kind of liked and talk about those if asked. Also, you can avoid it and re-direct to things like "That's really great you got to publish your book, congratulations" and "I'm happy for you" etc.
I would say be nice. If this is someone who you really like and don't want to hurt their feelings, then you need to kind of suck up your pride and be nice about it.
Pick out some things you did like about it. If it was really that bad, just remember that this is her first book. First books aren't always amazing.
You can always be constructive in any criticisms that you give her. By saying something really great, then something you wish would have been changed. If she is open to any criticisms, then that would be the best way to deliver them.
If you are going to ask someone for their honest opinion, then you better, in her case, expect one back. The thing is there is a difference between being crushingly honest (this dribble would never sell anywhere) and being constructive with your criticism, (I really felt like chapter three delivered on the dialogue, but needed a lot more content in the exposition of the scene). I've worked with a lot of students in my past who I sat reading their papers at home and laughing at just how absolutely horrible they were, but for them in person, I would frame it in a way that didn't indicate I had a good laugh and felt like they were the reason society was failing, but rather that they needed more work here and here, and here were at least two really positive things about their work. It's called sandwiching. You start off with good, you fill in with constructive criticism, you end with good.
Well shit, tough predicament. I would probably try to be nice and be honest as well. I would say something like 'for your first book you've done really well, you should be proud you got your book published, it's an amazing achievement' and recommend some more "talented" authors or something.
D. You can be honest while also... being tactful. You can recommend some books for her to read, tell her the best writers are avid readers... try to get her to see what else is out there so she can improve.
You only read the first chapter. I've read many that start off bad but then get better. Also you have to remember that you will not be the only one in the audience. It might not be your taste in books but it could definitely be somebody elses. As for the English, you should help her with that because if the editor changes a lot she might be like this isn't what i said/meant, so definitely help her out there. As to what to say i would keep it short. Just tell her well i haven't read all of it but the story isn't what i usually read so it's kind of hard for me to get into.
It's already published so there's not any point in giving her negative feedbac, just try saying you don't really read anything in that genre so you aren't qualified to judge it. But that you're proud of her and respect her accomplishment in writing it.
Even if her writing is not good, the fact that she finished writing a book demonstrates that she's hardworking and appreciates the arts.
If you aren't currently dating her, you have an easy out. Just say you can't attend, but you wish her the best. Better that than to hurt her feelings. If you must go, simply say you haven't had a chance to read it yet.
If you like her and want to continue dating her... don't be brutal. You will crush her and you will paint yourself in a negative light. Don't get me wrong, it's bad to lie but sometimes we don't always need to hear the truth.
Hi. I am not an author, but I read voraciously and I am critical: as you are. You can be truthful without being mean. Point out the difficulty in writing in a foreign language. That alone is an almost insurmountable barrier. Give her ideas on how to improve. Suggest a proofreader. Is it the idea that is poor or overused, or is it the structure? Structure can be improved, but a poor premise can not.
Be honest, but use some discretion, and definitely offer suggestions for improvement! Point out that while having started it when she was 12 certainly shows dedication, it also means it was partly written when she was 12.