After chatting with countless book clubs over the past 3-4 years, last night I was asked a question I'd never been asked before. Here it is: "You often mention books on your blog that you've really enjoyed. Could you also start posting the names of those you haven't liked?"
"No," came my reply, followed by this explanation...
Working alone, with little or no feedback for months and months on end, authors pour everything they've got into their work, and after writing & revising & restructuring a manuscript time and time again they then offer it up to their agent for consideration (if they have an agent, and I won't get into how hard getting one is other than to say the process is filled with the kind of rejection most sane people would never purposefully put themselves through.)
Moving on... After reading the manuscript, your agent's opinion will usually result in yet another round of revisions prior to the manuscript's release to a handful of carefully chosen editors at various publishing houses, each of whom will have their own opinion about what's working, what's not, if the book "speaks" to them, whether a P&L (profit and loss) projection can be done up that will be accepted by their bosses, and if their house will have room for the book on their already tight list.
After a book is purchased there will then be another round of revisions as your editor rolls up his/her sleeves and aids you in fine-tuning that rough diamond of a novel that's ultimately on its way to readers at the far end of the publishing assembly line where it'll be plopped into book stores to compete against an average of 150,000+ other novels each year. Then, when it is finally released, book reviewers will weigh in with their opinions (some who've sadly never written a book themselves) in a most public manner.
I think you see my point here, don't you?
Writing a novel (for those who manage to finish one that's saleable) is hard work; getting it published is equally difficult; growing & continuing to write while under a steady stream of critical scrutiny, not an easy task. And then having a fellow author bad mouth your book on his/her blog after it's released?
Not cool. Not even a little bit.