How to Use the Forum

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How to Use the Forum

Post  Admin on Sun Dec 28, 2008 5:15 am

These are the rules (well, they're more like guidelines, actually) for using the book review fora. They're really pretty simple...

1. Register as a user

Guests can read the reviews but cannot post or reply. This reduces spam postings in the fora.

2. Read a book.

Or more than one. You can read and review just about anything. This forum isn't picky about that.

3. Write a review.

Your review can contain whatever you want. We've seen everything from one sentence reviews to glorious dissertations that were better than the book being reviewed. You can go off on tangents, discuss how you felt, how it was written, and so on. Whatever moves you.

If you're reviewing more than one book in a single review, please include the full title and author of each book, and tell us something about each one as well. Remember, others are reading these and looking for what you thought, along with whether or not something might be interesting for them to read.

All that being said - and it really is that simple - there are a couple of other tidbits:

3.1 Title your review helpfully.

A normal review title looks like this:

##. Title, Author
So, in an actual example:
23. One Fish, Two Fish, Red Fish, Blue Fish, by Dr. Seuss

The leading number is which book number this is for you this year. (This counts towards the goal. See below.) The title and author are pretty obvious, but please include them. The data is needed for the index pages (see below again) and if you don't include it, I'll have to go look it up for you. Some other points about titles:

  • If the title and author are too long to fit, please include them both (in their full form) in the body of the review.

  • If your review gives away major plot points, add "(spoilers)" to the end of the title so readers can skip your review if they want, like this:
    23. One Fish, Two Fish, Red Fish, Blue Fish, by Dr. Seuss (spoilers)
    If your spoilers aren't that significant use something like "(minor spoilers)". Please use your best judgment about this.

  • If you didn't finish a book, it's possible to point that out with the review number. "2.5" means it was the 'two and one halfth book I read this year". This is pretty arbitrary, but please use only numbers. "2a" won't work in the index pages.

  • To title a review that discusses multiple books, use something like this:
    2-4. 3 books by Isaac Asimov
    Please include the full titles (and authors if needed) in the review body so your readers can follow in your footsteps, and so I can update the index pages.
3.2 Annual goal.

Each year the participants select a goal - a number of books to read. This is purely arbitrary, and meeting that goal is definitely not required. Nor is this a competition. Consider it some fun motivation. The goal is in the forum title, so in 2009, the goal was 29 books, making the forum title "29 in 09". For 2010 the goal is 30, thus "30 in 10".

Along with each year's goal goes a new set of avatars (with a theme). As you reach different points in your reading total your avatar will be updated. The avatars (and theme) are not announced in advance, so you have to write reviews (or read reviews by others) to figure out what they are.

3.3 Index Pages.

At the moment it doesn't exist, but coming "soon"(tm) is a searchable index of reviews posted here and in Doug's original fora. More information will appear when it becomes available.

4. Read and comment on reviews by others.

Everyone who writes reviews here loves to get comments and questions, and the discussions help us all learn more about the books being reviewed. So please read reviews by others and join in (or start) discussions.

5. Have fun!

This is supposed to be a fun forum to participate in. Please help make it so!

6. Other stuff.

  • If you'd like, feel free to enter a post in the introductions forum telling your fellow reviewers a little about you. This is a community, after all, and we should all get to know each other to some degree, even if we're spread out over many time zones.

  • There's also a general discussion forum for things that aren't book reviews. Feel free to use that if the mood strikes you.

  • You may - of course - publish your reviews in other places. Some of us maintain our own blogs or post them to Amazon.com or other sites. Whatever works for you is just fine.

  • You can ask questions by responding to this post, posting in the General Discussion forum, or sending me (user name "admin") a Personal Message (PM) directly. I'll get back to you as soon as I can.

That's it. Told you it was simple. Happy Reading!


Last edited by Admin on Tue Dec 01, 2009 6:14 pm; edited 3 times in total
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