I think anyone who writes reviews will have experienced that dry spell that can happen when you sit in front of your screen and nothing happens. You make coffee, check twitter, stare out the window, come back to your screen. And still, NOTHING! You are drawing a blank on what you want to say or even where to start. I find the three star rating books are the biggest culprit for this and I have come up with my own system for dealing with them.
How I write reviews when I’m drawing a blank:
- Write the title of the book in the middle of the page and then around that, write down all the words or phrases that spring to mind.
- If you need prompts – think about how you felt about the characters, if the romance worked, did it roll out too many troupes, how was the pace, did the writing inspire you. Just ask the questions that are important to you to stimulate and organise your thoughts.
- Just one or two word answers, you can elaborate later.
- Then review your page, highlight the points you want to cover.
- And now you have the basis of your review and you just need to flesh it out.
I don’t do this for all my reviews or even for most of them. Mostly I sit down and just leave the thoughts flow on to the screen. But if I’m struggling or if it has been a while since I read the book, following the above always helps me. It sounds simple but once you have some ideas on paper, it will get you started and give you a structure on which to base your review. Seriously, I swear by it, it works!
Bookish Chat : Do you have a system that you use when you struggle to find ways to talk about a book? What works for you? I’d love to hear about it. Or if you try this, let me know how it works for you.