In which I turn a bad review into an endorsement through the magic of ellipses

Man, this past week or so has sucked on a level which is starting to reach comical proportions.  First my novel collapsed.  Then my bicycle got stolen.  Then I got food poisoning on Wednesday night which caused me to spend most of Thanksgiving weekend puking.  Then this morning I woke up to a shitty review from Kirkus.  Actually, it wasn’t so much a review as a reductive and dismissive plot summary.  Are they supposed to do that?  Pepper their careless assessment with spoilers?  It doesn’t seem very sportsmanlike.

Anyway, I spent the afternoon in bed feeling sorry for myself.  Then I thought about how magical punctuation is.  More specifically, the power of the ellipsis.  Check it out:

“Metafiction … culminate[s in]… […]remarkable… literary…romance … [T]he book is a… goldmine.”

Kirkus Reviews

I was all bummed that I couldn’t use the word “gifted” because it didn’t come in the right order until I saw that the word “remarkable” (even better!) was positioned correctly, as long as you removed that pesky “un.”

Pretty sweet, no?  Worthy jacket copy, I would say.


5 responses to “In which I turn a bad review into an endorsement through the magic of ellipses

  1. hats off to a fantastic turn of events–magical punctuation–i utterly love that. you are my new inspiration!! bravo you, and, very unsportsmanlike indeed. dismissive plot summary=poop.

    • Thank you, Daphne! Since yesterday I’ve noticed that you can make ANY book sound shitty with a snarky plot summary, which I guess is good to know should I ever pursue a career as a douchey reviewer.

  2. This post is inspired–and isn’t it refreshing to realize that even after securing agent representation, even after getting that beautiful book deal, even after the beautiful, bouncing baby book is delivered to the world, we can STILL look forward to the occasional grump-a-lump review of our work?! Please tell me you are serious about that as jacket copy–it seems only fair in light of the spoilers…

    • I would be so awesome if that could be jacket copy, but I don’t think the publisher will go for it!

      What’s more aggravating than it being negative is how bloody slipshod it was. No commentary on the structure or the quality of the prose or any of the artistry, just a shitty pronouncement that the plot is lame. How is that supposed to tell anyone what the experience of reading the book is like? Sigh.

      Not sure that I would call the wraith of rejection that follows the writer all the way to the grave “refreshing,” but that’s a good way to look at it…

      • Oh, the “refreshment” was entirely saracastic–sorry if that was lost along the way–I am simply amazed/horrified/terrified/depressed by the continuing opportunities for scathing reviews, even after publication…seems a bit like being turned down for a date after you’re married (not that one doesn’t still feel the need to keep in shape, so to speak.) but, really…

        In any event, poo-poo on the lack of substantce in a review–I think we all writers can agree there is such a thing as constructive criticism (which can be helpful at any stage in our careers) and spoiling for the sake of spoiling.

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