Having written many reviews on Amazon UK I wanted a place where I could expand upon the Amazon review system and post honest, and insightful reviews of films and books that interest me, post articles, and build useful links to other sites. Feel free to comment, or offer suggestions. Please note that all comments will be moderated before being posted publicly, so if you wish to leave a private message please indicate this. If you use Twitter you can keep up to date by following thebookblog.
Remember that scene in “A Beautiful Mind” where Russell Crowe as John Nash, has pasted up a number of newspaper stories and is making connections between them? He is busy drawing associations, maybe seemingly at random, by running strings from one story to the next, and then that story to another, and so on? You could easily do the same with the way I come up with these posts. It’s no secret to pick out a certain synchronicity between them.
Concerning sources. I try to maintain accuracy by comparing a variety of sources. Where possible I indicate the source, or acknowledge the work of others. If you notice a failure in this regard, please tell me. Images are particularly difficult to attribute. Sometimes, I am limited by the software I use, or by Amazon’s eccentricities. Some images seem to fly in circles around the net. I aim to improve on this policy. Many thanks, especially if I inadvertently used one of yours!
Best Practice Policy
A Blog definition: a highly simplified, user friendly cousin of the website, entered in reverse chronological order. It creates an open, safe forum for users and provider(s) to interact..
This advantage means it is possible to write about anything, frequently in a lighter or more personal, often humorous tone than a website or online encyclopaedia, which can help make a complex issue accessible to a wider audience. This is a subject focused blog, that is, by looking at the category headings, you get an idea of the content, although this is eclectic. Generally, this is also a reactive/respondent blog, as it reviews the books and research of others.
Bloggers can and do take on controversial issues or large organisations, and speak to a potentially worldwide audience. They form a small, but loud voice.
The best critics will link to websites opposing their views, not just sympathetic to them, thus giving users a chance to see both sides of an issue, and form their own opinion.
Being aware of the using audience, encourages the provider to ensure all facts are correct, personal opinion suitably indicated, quotes referenced to source, and dated material stated as such. Comments seeking clarification of sources are welcome.
Providers avoid using secondary material without indicating it, and give a reference or link address. It is generally accepted relevant material will be used from elsewhere on the internet, provided it is not for personal gain, financial or educational assignments. Otherwise, this is plagiarism.
My policy on this site is that material may be freely used without permission for personal use, if substantially quoted online; please create a link to the original post.
Unlike most sites, where Posts have a short shelf-life, I intend to create a user-friendly archive for Posts that I may update, correct, or improve as necessary. This is why I feature a choice of normal search, contents listing and category listing.
In presenting more than my own opinion, it follows that I may not personally agree with every statement posted, this may seem contradictory, but I value the freedom to explore topics, without the restraint of whether I believe every aspect of the topic has equal value. Generally however, by reading the entire post, I hope the user discerns my view. Guest blogs may be the exception to this, see below.
By leaving a comment on a Post, you help me to improve the content. I moderate these comments, and intend generally only to add those that contribute to the subject. Thank you in advance. I believe one of the problems of the big sites is the time it takes to trawl through hundreds of comments, good or bad. If this seems harsh, I apologise, I do wonder if some sites monitor comments at all, beyond automated filtering. We all know the problems of spam, I do check if I can, as the originating sites are sometimes good. Senders beware, however, I’m unlikely to allow it.
I don’t mind negative feedback especially, it is better than a tickbox ‘was this helpful to you’ Yes or No, and leaving the reviewer wondering what the controversy was.
Single Book Author
Imagine you have just finished reading a book written by an amazing author, so you look on the internet to search for other books he or she has written. You find that in their entire lifetime, they never wrote another book, although the one book that they did write was extremely popular.
This is called a “Single Book Author”, when a person produces one work in a specific field that becomes popular, but never publishes in that field again. In the world of literature, the author might have a couple of additional short stories or poems that were published, but no other novels. Compare with “One-Hit Wonder“, where someone has produced several works but only one had managed to become popular.
It could be the author doesn’t live long enough to compose another work, or possibly, “A Tough Act to Follow“, where they’re afraid they will never improve on their first attempt. On this site, my category is a broad one, for example they may have published another book on a similar theme.
Thank you for spending the time to look at the site,
Peter Buckley April 2010