Well, been almost a week since I posted on the blog. I don’t know how time gets away from me. For one, we had preregistration last week, and I gave a test on Friday and got 30 essays from another class on Friday. Lots of grading over the weekend.
I had also been doing some writing. I finished a short horror story called “Long Dead Woman in a Black Dress,” which I’ll be submitting soon. I’m about halfway done with an SF story that carries the working title “Electric Love in Blue.” And I’ve drafted the first scene of a new Krieg story, which I’m calling “Where All the Souls are Hollow.”
Then came Sunday. On Sunday, all the plumbing in the house seemed to clog up, and it’s gotten worse. Plumber is supposed to come today (Tuesday) and I hope the news won’t be too bad. I don’t know about you, but these kinds of domestic crises take a toll on me. I know I should roll with the flow (or non-flow considering our current issue), but I just find it hard to concentrate when dealing with this kind of stuff. I let it get to me too much.
On the review front, I think the interview over on Prashant’s blog came off well. I sure appreciate him putting it up. On the less positive side, I also noticed a couple of days ago that Bitter Steel has a new review and it is a 1 star stomp. Looks like it went up about a month ago but this is the first I’ve seen it. I apparently achieved the notable level of “tripe!” This is actually the first 1 star review I’ve ever gotten for anything so I have to keep it in perspective.
Whether reviews are good or bad, I always read them to see if I can pick up any insights into what readers like or don’t like. This one was not very helpful, though. Besides the “tripe” label, he adds: “Then I stumbled upon the word 'cruelness', and I knew that it was a lost cause. Out of all the actual words the author could have chosen, he picked 'cruelness'. The word is 'cruelty', Shakespeare.”
Of course, cruelness is a perfectly good word that is found in dictionaries everywhere and is even counted as a word in Scrabble. I remember considering “cruelty” in the context of the story but I felt that ‘cruelness’ had the better sound in that particular situation. So, if the use of “cruelness” instead of “cruelty” can make such an impact on this particular reader, there was no way I’d ever reach him anyway. Frankly, I’ve been much more troubled by 3 star reviews that took the work seriously and found something lacking.