You’ve heard of Writer’s Block, right?

Knock-on-wood. As an author, I’ve never had writer’s block. Still, I am a reviewer suffering from being a Clogged Critic. Like being stuck on the freeway with so much traffic, you’re not moving.

Why did I say, “knock on wood”? Sorry, I digress. My mind is like that, and it takes the discipline the U.S. Marines pounded into me decades ago, to keep my imagination under control, so I get stuff done. In this post, explaining what I’m doing to get unstuck with writing book reviews.

While brushing my teeth this morning, I had an idea to help this Clogged Critic get unblocked and start writing more reviews again. What I’m planning to do may not work for everyone, but I think it’s still worth sharing.

As an Amazon Vine Reviewer, I’ve written many reviews on Amazon — hundreds, thousands, I don’t know. Too many to count, and Amazon doesn’t tell me (unless they did, but made it difficult to find the answer).

What Amazon says: my reviews have had over 70,000 Views and 940 Hearts.

Time challenges have led to my extended tenure as a Clogged Critic. Brief reviews for non-literary or cinematic items like tools and gadgets are pointless.

A star rating suffices for non-book or non-film items like pliers.

With books and films, in the past, I spent more time writing those reviews, because I wanted to capture the soul of the story. Due to increased demands on my time, I ceased writing reviews like that as they demanded more effort.

I may have discovered a method to write the quality reviews I desire. I seldom write a review that isn’t 4 or 5-stars for books and films. If I write a negative review on Amazon with 1 to 3 stars, I had a reason — to warn buyers and readers. If I can’t finish a book I started, it almost never gets reviewed. The ones I finish reading, though, deserve one.

I have 16 books in my to-be-reviewed stack, some for months and others for over a year. Using a new method, I hope to expedite the process with my first book review in a while.

S.B. Divya has an amazing imagination to admire

The reason this novel earned 5-stars from me is because the story delivered what the blurb promised. After all, the blurb convinced me to read the book.

“One woman and her pilot are about to change the future of the species in an epic space opera about aspiration, compassion, and redemption. For five centuries, human life has been restricted to Earth, while post-human descendants called alloys freely explore the galaxy. But when the Earth-like planet of Meru is discovered, two unlikely companions venture forth to test the habitability of this unoccupied new world and the future of human-alloy relations.”

Every plot element promised in the pull quote from the book’s blurb was delivered in this fascinating story.


That’s it. I found a pull quote (in bold print above) from the novel’s blurb that already said what I wanted. Then all I needed to write was the first and last sentence surrounding the blurb.

What does that mean for the authors I’m reviewing?

You guys better have great blurbs on your Amazon book pages, because if you don’t, the odds are your books that I read and enjoyed may end up serving a life sentence in my-waiting-to-be-reviewed stack.

To me, at 79.4, and ticking, time has become more precious than diamonds and gold ­ — metaphorically speaking, that is. After all, we don’t know when our clock is going to stop, but we know we will not live forever.