Master of Confusion

The responses to last week’s post made me raise my eyebrows a bit because I realized I wasn’t very clear. When I’d written “they should have the background acquired in the first book”, I’d meant because it’s serial, not episodic like the Cera Chronicles. I suppose unclear is my root issue.

You know how they say you’re not supposed to read the bad reviews?

Well, guess what I did for Thanmir War.

Of the four reviews from people I don’t know, two of them talk about the book not holding their interest. To me, that sounds like “it’s boring” and boring usually equals lack of tension. Maybe that’s not the case here. I don’t know. I think a good number of reviews touch more on it being confusing than anything else. Hrm. I suppose I am an expert at confusing people. *grumpy face* If the first book was confusing, how will the second one fare?

I suppose I’ll wait and see. This week, I’m reaching out to beta-readers. I’ve got a handful of critique partners, but I know they’re pretty busy with their projects and a sweeping epic would probably hamper their progress. So I’ve asked my sis-in-law’s friend and a couple of coworkers. For the writer’s view of things, I’m eternally grateful to Aldrea, my longest standing CP, for tackling my chapters in the midst of her own.

I’m open to other betas if anyone out there is interested in undertaking a 187K epic fantasy. No need to have read the first book. Isto is written so people can start there and get the gist of everything pertinent. Yeah, it brings up events and characters from the first book, which is why I said it’d be a better reading experience, but it’s not (at least it shouldn’t be) necessary.

As a side note, I’ve been playing with animations (as you might be able to tell if you have a browser that supports animated PNGs). Is it a productive use of my time? Eh… It’s still a fun little side project.

Do you like animated book covers? Do you ever read reviews when you shouldn’t? Anyone get the urge to beta read my book and tell me if it’s confusing?

Loni Townsend

About Loni Townsend

Wife. Mother. Writer. Ninja. Squirrel.

16 thoughts on “Master of Confusion

  1. I don’t have any reviews of my own work to read so I can’t answer that question, but when I’m considering a book I will often go to the bad reviews first. I think a writer could probably learn more from bad reviews though the good reviews sure make a person feel better.

    Arlee Bird
    Tossing It Out

  2. I’ve learned a lot from the good bad reviews. LOL. The ones that just say, “this sucks!” Don’t help at all.

    I have some time to read. I’m a slow and often offer annoying plot meddling opinions that may or may not be helpful. I think you have my email address, but if not it’s eseckman(at)ymail(dot)com.

    *I do take offense at you claiming the master of confusion title. I believe that belongs to me.

    • My humblest apologies! I bow to your mastery. 🙂

      Thank you! I’ll take you up on your offer. I’m not in any rush and I welcome plot meddling opinions.

  3. Love the animation on the book cover! Sorry about the reviews, although every book is not for every person, so your story might not hold their interest, but it doesn’t mean other people won’t find it facinating! I never read Thanmir, but i read This World Bites and found it highly enjoyable and INTERESTING 🙂

  4. Not sure about animated book covers.
    I do read reviews. Usually the bad ones make me laugh.

  5. Ah. Yes, a serial is way different than a series.

    I like that animated cover. Very cool.

    I might have time to do some beta reading, although it may take me a while. That sounds like a long book. But I’m game.

  6. I love your animated cover. It’s really eye-catching! I confess: I look to see if any new reviews are posted for my first book at least once a week. There haven’t been for a very, very, very long time. Wah!! 🙂


  7. I’ll beta now or crit later if you want a more detailed marking of stuff. It’s up to you. Let me know. 🙂

  8. The animated cover is cool. I would love to have my book covers animated.

  9. I’ve thought about an animation I might use for my first book, assuming I ever finish it. 🙂

    Even if I didn’t use it on the book cover, I’d probably use it somewhere on the website. Kind of a branding thing.

    Heck, yes. I’d be willing to beta read Isto.

  10. That animation is awesome!

  11. I don’t always read reviews anymore. When I first started, I found some of the bad reviews of Backworlds helpful. It depends whether the reviewer is your audience or not. Some aren’t, and there’s no reason to cater to those.

  12. Nas

    I like the cover and the story premise sounds interesting. Reading is so subjective. You can’t please everyone.

  13. Animated png? what what what? I have missed this. I need to hit google.

    Man, wish I had time. I love fantasy. I’d suggest my brother, but he is a slooooow reader. He;s good though (he beta reads mine) but slow.

  14. I was not familiar with these animated covers, but yours is awesome! I’m not in a position to give you an unbiased opinion as to whether your time is well spent working on them, as I, too, have the “design a cover” affliction.

    I do read reviews, and I’m looking info about unexpected content, such as murdering children in a cozy mystery or vampires in a seemingly non-vampire book or a bunch of sexual content I’m not interested in reading. “Boring” and “confusing” aren’t very useful in reviews, but that’s also why I read the “Look Inside” content.

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