Thoughts & Responses

A small view point on reviews

Over at Mechanical Anime Review, Scott asked others on how do they approach their reviews. And it is a good question, along with his post a being a good read.

Naturally, he got varied answers. As many bloggers have their own styles and approach to their reviews. Which is perfectly fine.

Now, it would be extremely hypocritical of me to say, I’ve stopped doing reviews of any sort, since I’m finishing up my own episode reviews that I left on a hiatus. From my years of doing episode reviews; from a full blow by blow account of what occurred in the episode, to writing out how I think an episode review should be written. It always varied, the format certainly changed. Case in point, if you take a look at these two beauties

Fune wo Amu episode 1 review

to that of another anime series, that was wrote up.

The lost village episode 1 review

You can clearly see different the different types of approach and format I had. What I’m saying is, when it comes to writing reviews of any kind. You will have to take in to account two things.

The first one; the format type. I always think this is fairly important as it gives your readers an idea on how the information will be presented to you. Long hand posts, will require a fair few images, or some nifty understanding of using text to make it look appealing i.e use of font colours, sub-headings being in the right place, takeaway etc. For short hand posts, I think it has to be punchy. You’re writing to a word count, so you have to cull and think more carefully how your review will turn out. In essence, you have to put in a limited amount of detail without going in too much detail. That’s how I think reviews should generally be seen.

As for the second one; understanding your readers or at least try to. If you’re writing for others, then presentation of your reviews is pretty much a must. If you’re writing long hand and your readers are showing disinterest, I can tell you that can be very disheartening. I did a review on Erase, I put my heart in to it. Understanding and commenting on the social implications found in that anime. Guess what?, not many showed interest in reading it. I was put off from doing that type of reviews ever since. It also told me, that the fleeting readers I have, showed interest in that style of content.

So when I switched to a short hand review. Where the information presented were easier and digestible, readers were paying more attention to it. They could read it and didn’t have to deal with my waffle in long hand reviews. Having said that, even when I restarted, I tried long hand epi reviews, as said in a blog post. It took energy and time to write it up. So when I changed to the new format to short hand (or synopsis style), I found it more convenient for me. And it gets the post written much faster. It’s funny though, because that style actually suits me. It just took me a long time to actually realise it.

What I’m saying in this ramble – find a style that suits you. Try to stick with it, nothing irritates readers more is constant formats changing. It gives the impression, you’re not sure what is working. Not only will it irritate them, the tone of your review is also affected by the change. That is another factor. The tone of your review. Try to keep that in mind when you do reviews.

If you’re doing it for yourself, then it matters not how many times you change. So long you enjoy in doing that post.

Err..well I guess this ramble went on long enough. It’s my first time attempt in doing a response post on a topic that is actually quite interesting. Like I said at the beginning, check out Scott’s post and blog.

10 replies on “A small view point on reviews”

This is such an interesting post and it gave me a lot of perspective. I hope to be able to adjust and adapt my style as I read and write more.
Fyi, I nominated you for the Sunshine Blogger Award!

Liked by 1 person

Ah crud, well this is my 4th blog. I’ve been around wordpress since 2009. However I stopped blogging around 2010-till around mid to the tail of 2013. I did try one waaay back in 2007-08 on blogger once, i don’t count that attempt though.

Liked by 1 person

That is a good question. For me, I personally hate my writing. I feel as if it’s too stiff; I can’t write creatively enough. I also struggle with length and the whole reviewing part as well.

Liked by 2 people

I know you are much more experienced then I am so you know this already, but time writing a post vs the attention it gets it always astounding to me. You just never know what post is going to get a lot of attention compared to the other ones and it’s always strange. I’m glad that you found a balance.

And thank you for the share!

Liked by 3 people

NP Scott!! :D. You guys have more experience in writing thought posts. I always feel I’m out of my depth with them xDD. It is confusing and frustrating, when you put a lot of effort in to a particular post and it doesn’t get the attention you think it deserves. Alas, it is what it is. You can’t please everyone. All I can say is enjoy the posts that you like doing.

Also, I should be the one thanking you. It was one of your blog posts, mid week impressions posts I think, that not only inspired me but made me realise what works for me.

Liked by 1 person

i guess my review style would be the “easily digestible” one.
i dont really know if im capable of doing those deep reviews that make full sense and actually look professional. i just find it harder to collect full thoughts about a show and put them into words that way. heck, i dont even know if this particular comment made any sense at all.

Liked by 3 people

It made sense. Some have a hard time, some find it easy. Write with the style that best suits you and one you find comfortable with. If the post comes across as forced or not enjoyed being written, people will pick up on it.

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