What do you think makes a review a good one?
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Thread: What do you think makes a review a good one?

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    Turning over a new leaf KaiTheAirbender's Avatar
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    Default What do you think makes a review a good one?

    Often times while posting a story, people are often hoping to receive reviews for their story. Some can range to the generic "Great story! Can't wait to read more!" or the brutal and almost discouraging reviews from Farla. My question to you is what do you think actually makes a good and well rounded review.

    In my honest opinion, a good and well rounded review does the following things.
    1. It tells the author what they think about the story itself.
    2. It tell them what they're doing wrong and how they can fix it.
    3. While not obligatory, it tells the author what they like about the story.
    4. It encourages the author to improve.
    "You think you can kidnap Jinora and all these baby bisons!? >:U"

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    Life is easy. Focus58's Avatar
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    Default Re: What do you think makes a review a good one?

    Sounds pretty solid. I go by the 1:1 complement/criticism ratio, but that's just me. The uniqueness of each review is like the best part IMO- different perspectives an' all.

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    Less cute in person Beth Pavell's Avatar
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    Default Re: What do you think makes a review a good one?

    In my opinion a good review mentions what the reviewer likes about the story as much as the criticism. Criticism should always be constructive, and ideally so should the praise - otherwise the author can't really do much with the review.

    I always try to mention any other factors that affect my enjoyment, such as whether I'm a fan of the genre, etc. I probably won't enjoy a dark fic as much as a frothy journey fic, but since matters like that are personal preference I try to make that clear in any review I give
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    Default Re: What do you think makes a review a good one?

    In my opinion, a good review tells the author what's wrong/what didn't work with the story, but more importantly how they can fix it. I don't value praise as much as I value constructive criticism. Maybe I'm just weird, but I prefer brutal honesty. If the story sucks, I want you to tell me that it does. But more importantly, I want you to tell me how I can fix it. If you just tell me "This story sucks I hate it," well, I'm sorry, but I can't fix that, because I have no idea what you want me to fix. If, instead, you say "This part was really bad, I think this would have worked better" then, awesome, I'll go see if I can fix that! Don't sugar-coat things, don't try to give me equal praise on trivial things to make me feel better, just tell me up-front what works and what doesn't.

    This is part of the reason why I refrain from reviewing, because I understand that hardly anybody else has my mindset, and I just come across as a big jerk. xD

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    Moderator AceTrainer14's Avatar Forum Head
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    Default Re: What do you think makes a review a good one?

    We do already have several other threads for the discussion of reviews and their quality. Would you like to look at some of those and see if this discussion warrants being moved there?

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    Registered User VTP-Dawkins93's Avatar
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    Default Re: What do you think makes a review a good one?

    For me, this is a situational thing and largely dependant on the author.

    Firstly, it depends on the quality of the story. I've reviewed stories that I thought were so good that any criticism I gave felt like I was really reaching. Conversely, I've reviewed stories that were so bad that it was very difficult to find anything worthy of praise, and that any praise I gave felt very superficial and mere token encouragement. In these situations, finding a good balance between criticism and praise just isn't possible.

    So for that reason, I don't consider balance to be essential towards making a good review. What I feel is more important is being as helpful as possible using the most suitable tone.

    If a review points out a flaw, it should always follow that up with a suggestion to fix that flaw. Reviews that merely point out flaws can be very discouraging, while reviews that only give praise aren't all that useful to an author looking to improve. Preferably, it should do so without being a massive dick about it unless the author has specifically stated that he or she prefers that reviewers are brutally honest with them. From my own experiences and from what I've gathered from other people, reviews that are condescending or inflammatory aren't well-received, no matter how balanced or helpful they were.

    Just flaw fixing though can make it look like that your only reviewing just so can point out what's wrong, no matter how well-intentioned you wer, so I think it's also helpful to tell the author what you thought of the story because that gives the impression that you're an interested and willing reader.

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    Turning over a new leaf KaiTheAirbender's Avatar
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    Default Re: What do you think makes a review a good one?

    Quote Originally Posted by AceTrainer14 View Post
    We do already have several other threads for the discussion of reviews and their quality. Would you like to look at some of those and see if this discussion warrants being moved there?
    I actually just found one from another user on another topic that was basically the same as this. I guess this could be locked if we already have a thread like this.
    "You think you can kidnap Jinora and all these baby bisons!? >:U"

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    Moderator AceTrainer14's Avatar Forum Head
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    Default Re: What do you think makes a review a good one?

    That would be best. Feel free to move all your points there though :)

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