I used to be proud to say I was a book blogger. Five years ago, when I attended a con, I would declare my status of book blogger with pride. I would say what blog I owned and I would get happy nods. I would get smiles. I would get authors pushing their cards into my hands, I would get books pushed on me.
I feel like some old lady. “I remember when…” blogging was in it’s prime. Then one scandal rocked our world after another. And it keeps happening. Now something happens, and I’m all, oh yeah – that’s every year after BEA and ALA. Or – oh yeah, she wasn’t as bad as that YA Blogger – you know, She Who Must Not Be Named. But, now it’s not fun anymore. Now, it’s trickled out of our little world and into the world we love, the world of authors, publishers and publicists. Now when you say blogger, it’s not an interesting thing, you’re just another person trying to get a free book. We’ve been stereotyped.
And we deserve it.
I hate saying that. Maybe a good portion of us are in it for the love of books. But a lot, especially the ones that rat the cons and are our PUBLIC facade are in it for what they can grab. The truth of the matter is, that if 10 book bloggers show up at a con and one acts like an asshole, that’s all everyone remembers. The one asshole. I’ve seen people go bonkers at a con for a stack of hot ARCs. Bonkers. It always seems to be a blogger. Oh yeah and that one grandma of the blogger.
I now even have my own personal author/blogger drama. I don’t want to tell this story (you’re my first), because it’s embarrassing. But at my first signing, as an author, I had a blogger walk up to me.
She said, “Hi my name is ______ and I’m from ________.”
Don’t ask me to tell you the blog name or her name, I have no idea, can’t remember actually.
I looked at her blankly, because I had no idea who she was. I was so new in the author game, I thought she was going to say something like, “I love your tutorials.” But, no, she stood there like I should do something. When I didn’t say anything, she said, “I’ll promote your book if you give me a copy.” And then she looked pointedly at my stack of books in front of me and held out her hand. I was so stunned I handed her a book. She didn’t even ask me to sign it or say thank you, she just walked off. I was embarrassed after because I should have told her to do something inappropriate with a rod-shaped piece of wood. But, I was so stunned by her that I followed directions like a sheep. I don’t even remember her blog name to see if she did promote my book.
And that was my first interaction with a “blogger” as an author. It’s funny, when you bring up bloggers with authors they all nod their head and smile, saying “We love bloggers!” And then they glance warily around themselves, like “who was listening?” Because they don’t want to get in trouble with a blogger. If they were to voice a negative opinion suddenly all their books will be 1-starred and their career ruined. But, if they experienced something like that- something like I experienced. Something like the current drama that is going on, why would they love bloggers?
And it’s so unfair. I don’t want to be embarrassed to be a book blogger. I love book bloggers. I have never met better people in my life. There is nothing like meeting someone that loves books as much as you do. Nothing like it!!! I don’t want to be embarrassed to be a book blogger. I don’t want to scared to voice my opinion about another blogger that is stealing, scamming or ripping me off. Scared that I’ll be called a bully and now that I have books – all of them 1-starred. Call me a bully, so be it, write a bad review. It’s already happened. One bad interaction with a blogger and she marked all my books to 1-star – and she was the one that was stealing my designs! But, again I’m the bully. I just don’t want to be embarrassed to do what I love. I just don’t want this to be what we become.
I don’t know what to do to fix it. Only that we have to be louder voices. We have to be the ones that show our faces. We have to be the ones that say “hey that’s not right.”
So, here I am saying – hey this is not right. Taking five and six copies of the same ARC at BEA and ALA is not right! Then charging for it – not right:
Please do not fall for this SCAM! It does not cost that much to ship bks. She is basically charging you for the ARCs pic.twitter.com/31eRrED2Mp
— Damaris C. (@GCReading) July 5, 2016
Because guess what BLOGGERS – because of people like this “book blogger” signs like this are now going up and people are laughing about us. Go away little Blogger – these books are not for you. Download your eBook like a good little blogger.
— Jill the OWL (@justkeepreading) July 6, 2016
I really am embarrassed, now. I don’t know what I would do if I was walking around ALA happily taking ARCs and saw that sign. Patti went to ALA I can’t wait to hear what she says about this. I would have probably gone back and put my books back. I don’t want to have to put my books back. 🙁
It would seem this
blogger, scammer, that runs Crossroads Reviews, that I called out in the post has been doing this for a LONG time. It would seem the ego on us “old hat” book bloggers think that we as a community are above this stuff. Above scammers and cheats. But, like all communities there are people out there that prey on the unsuspecting and trusting. This blogger from Crossroads Reviews seems to be one of those people that think they “deserve” to take money from other people. And it’s gone on since 2013 – why it’s just now coming out is beyond me. We can’t let people like this infiltrate our community.
Example 1 2013 -> https://www.facebook.com/ravenreview/posts/500207320015690
Example 2 2015 > https://m.facebook.com/mereadalot/posts/817452165036797
Example 3 2015 > https://www.goodreads.com/topic/show/2365789-other-trading-sites
- It costs me $3.52 to ship 2 books via media mail the other week, in an envelope that she ships in.
- She has deleted the original post, so there is no way to see the “other goodies” part
- The four people in the room are said to be her family, and there is proof in her pictures and from people that witnessed that she had her small kids with wristbands on their wrists to get books.
- We have no knowledge of a Disney trip or a GoFundMe, only claims by below book blogger about a GoFundMe campaign that wasn’t used for what it was intended. Nothing substantiated.
Jessica Porter of Crossroads Review is now being accused of fraud. I must reiterate that all of these posts are one blogger’s word against another’s. Take it how you will:
— Jennifer Christensen (@HelloJennyReads) July 7, 2016
7/7/16 – Response from Crossroads Review Blogger in a post – equipped with hashtags in the title for classy effect: Open letter to the #Blogging #Publisher Community at large
“We are sorry that this was all blown out of proportion. This entire situation was been a drain on twitter and the page as well as on us personally. And we hope that this letter will stop all the drama, bulling, and hate.”
My Take: Does no one know how to do a proper apology anymore, or spell? Words – “We are sorry that this was all blown out of proportion.” Akin to “I’m sorry ya’ll are idiots – I did nothing wrong.”
And look! At the bottom of the post – if you comment, you can win a book! I’m sure she’ll charge you for shipping though (the fine print). Only $20 in shipping!
7/7/16 – Posts about Jessica Porter and Crossroads reviews are being reported on Facebook, so are being taken down.
— MEReadALOT (@MEReadALOT) July 8, 2016
7/7/16 – Blogger Jessica Porter is believed to be in the process of creating a new blogging identity – Bookstagram-> “FieryReads”
7/8/16 – Blogger Jennifer Christensen who spoke up about her prior relationship with Jessica Porter is claiming to be bullied and pressured into recanting her story. Please see her comment below (#84) and give your support.
7/8/16 – More aliases are popping up left and right for “Jessica”, we have @WitchReader, we have “rainamem” who commented on this post, saying “I’m proud to be a friend to Jessic and Crossroads” – but it’s actually Jessica herself. She put in an email she used to use:
No, the quote is not spelled incorrectly – she can’t spell her own name.
7/8/16 – All comments on blogger Jessica Porter’s “apology” post have been deleted. But all have been documented. See link above “Screener3”
********** I’m sure there will be more updates. *********