Concept art by Ubin Li
An observant reader spotted one in a recent book and mentioned it: "Her name was Magil, but for some reason, everybody called her Nancy ..."
Beatle fans will know this right off.
Happened also I got a critical letter from a fan who thought the latest book sucked big time and that he couldn't finish it. Managed to force himself to slog through a third or so of it, then quit.
Stock characters, and too many of them; bad dialog, poor research, confusing technology; not enough realism in the military stuff. Kind of like a video game.
Pretty much everything that could go wrong did, he said, couldn't find anything to like about it, and he was disappointed.
Fortunately, it was a Kindle book and he was able to get his money back. He hoped I'd do better in the future.
I warned him off the next two in the series. If he didn't like this one, I am certain he won't like those, either.
This is the biz: Some will love what you did and give you five stars; some will hate it. As always, I ask myself when I get panned, was it me? Did I not hit the target for which I was aiming? Or was it them? Did they not get it? Some combination of the two?
In this case, given what bothered him the most? He's not a fan of military-science fiction, because I feel like the weapon-porn, tech-talk, and space opera aspects I did weren't all that far off the money. He compared it to stuff by David Drake and S.M. Stirling, which more or less makes my point. If that's the case, he wasn't the audience I wanted, and the love wasn't fated to happen. And maybe some of it was me. But I'm pretty comfortable with my skills, so I'm not apt to be crying myself to sleep over his review ...