You may remember that I had a competition to help me find abusive emails and reviews for my forthcoming book Worlds Within Worlds. Thanks to all of you who contributed, either in the comments or by sending me an email.
I’m sorry that it has taken me so long to get the results back to you – life has been very hectic – but I do have 4 winners:
Annie Mitchell, Brian Sfinas, Pete Morin and Charles Ray.
I chose Annie’s contribution for the first email that Ella gets from Dita the disgruntled author:
When I offered you the opportunity to appraise my book and post your review, I had no idea what a vindictive jealous minx you truly are. Your writers’ profile belies that ugly streak you so obviously have and I am disgusted that your promote yourself in the way you do. You are obviously gifted in writing bullshit as you have fooled many people, but I can see you for what you are; an evil covetous hag so full of self hate that you can hardly see the pure brilliance of a novel such as mine beyond your deep green eyed zealous self.
My book has gained acclaim from everyone who has read it and one can only assume it is your demanding envy which forced you to write such filth on my review. I demand not only you take it down, but you write a public apology to myself and to my fans.
This opportunity to review what will no doubt be a Pulzer Prize winner could have been step up for your career but its my intention to not only halt it but to discredit every part of your writing and public profile; unless you do as I have asked immediately.
I chose Brian’s contribution for the email threatening legal action:
After careful review of the events leading up to the posting of your review I have decided that I had no choice but to seek legal counsel. My attorney has assured me with 100% certainty that I not only have a case for slander and libel, but that you yourself might be working with other authors in an attempt to discredit me and my work. My lawyer has also assured me that with the evidence that I have collected from your review, your website and our correspondence that you will likely face the maximum penalty – in a case like this that will equate to roughly $150,000 in damages and up to 18 months of prison time. I would like to avoid this scenario as much as you, so I will again give you the opportunity to take down the offending review within 24 hours. This time, failure to comply will result in a lawsuit being swiftly filed with the California grand court and a cease-and-desist order will be issued against you and any other aliases you may use on the Internet. My attorney has assured me that not only will we have your Internet abilities revoked almost instantly, but that we can file an injunction to keep you from filing for bankruptcy and avoiding the cost of your criminal activity. Again, I implore you to simply take down the review. I think we can both agree that this isn’t worth going to court over, and I would hate to have to ruin someone’s life over something as silly as a poorly-written and misguided review. I hope to hear back from you soon with acknowledgment of this letter and assurance that the review will be taken down in the allotted time. If not, the next letter you get will definitely be from my legal team.
And I also used his review of Ella’s book:
If you are looking for an alternative to conventional anesthetics or sleep medication and are looking for the shortest possible path to unconsciousness, look no further than Catnip Creek by Ella (character’s last name). A book has never so failed to ‘start’ in the entirety of recorded literary history. From page one it will be clear to the reader that Ella (character’s last name) is either a child author or possibly suffering from some mental trauma. You will ask yourself how a work so trivial and bland could have been created using the English language. You will laugh. You will cry. Never for the right reasons. It is likely that you will call your friends, only to tell them that you have indeed found a book so boring and tasteless that it may have medical applications. Going in for dental work? No problem. Read a chapter of this book and NEVER FEEL ANYTHING EVER AGAIN.
The story is of two elderly people: Carl and Clarissa (the author clearly has an alliteration fetish) who have a cat named Hubert. Are you asleep already? So was I. Sloshing through this book was so uncomfortable and nauseating that at times I thought suicide would be my only escape from a world in which this person is considered an author. Further, it infuriates me that she believes not only that she is a writer, but that she has the gall to judge the work of other, more-talented authors in her reviews.
Trust me when I say if the option for zero stars was available, I would select it. I encourage people to stay away from this book and this author, unless your goal is to have every single one of your sensibilities offended. As a reader, as a fan of literature and as a person, I feel like I have lost half a day of my life that I will never get back. I am ashamed to admit that I read this book.
How would you feel if you got a review like that?
I used part of Pete’s contribution as Dita’s Facebook post:
Prunella Smith is a dyke bitch who spends her life finding ways to emasculate every man she comes across. I reckon she’s part of that ‘review mafia’ than gangs up on self-published authors and bullies them until they crawl into a corner and cry. Well, I’m not crying. I’m fighting back.
And I used Charles Ray’s review as well:
Catnip Creek is without a doubt the worst book I’ve ever read. The author can’t write, yet she writes reviews of other people’s books. Her negative reviews are just because she’s jealous and she wants to put down the competition. This stupid book is about this old couple and their stupid cat, and no one really cares about them. I’d give it minus five stars if that was possible, but since I can’t, and I can’t give it no stars, I’ll be generous and give her one star.
I’ll send these delightful authors an email so they can claim their choice of the prizes.