Alexandra Adornetto and the Importance of Author-Consumer PR

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This post was written by a book blogger and good friend of Bibliodaze who has asked for anonymity. Given the often messy state of book blogging & with increasing numbers of fracturing author-reader relations, and the content of this particular post, we have granted them that. Please respect that. We at Bibliodaze take full responsibility for the content we allow on the site.

Well, there was an explosion on Twitter last night. No, not #gamergate, #explainafilmplotbadly or the latest hashtag meme going around about Justin Bieber or One Direction. This one was much more localised.

Adornetto TweetYA author Alexandra Adornetto decided to act incredibly unprofessional on Twitter over a negative book review.

Sarah, the blogger in question, had not mentioned Adornetto in her Tweet when her Ghost House review was posted via her blog several weeks ago. Yet Adornetto still sought out this review and decided to add her two cents. Mainly, in the useless defence that a reviewer should also have a New York Times bestselling series. Which is silly. A patron in a restaurant does not need to be a chef to know that their soup tastes disgusting.  You don’t need to be involved in the process of manufacturing camera parts to know that a certain lens is terrible and not worth the money you paid for it.

This isn’t the first time Adornetto has gone after somebody for a negative review, though — around last September, The Book Lantern plugged Katya’s review of Halo (full disclaimer: Katya is a friend of the site, has posted here previously & the co-founder of the Book Lantern is also the co-founder of Bibliodaze). When another person on Twitter commented on how interesting and thoughtful the review was, she got an earful from Adornetto. The Tweet has now disappeared into the ether, but Adornetto said: “Oh no, you didn’t like my book, how will I go on!” Which is definitely not the way to deal with things. You shrug your shoulders, you suck it up, and you move on.

At the end of the day, you are providing a product to consumers, whether you are a professionally published writer, or just selling lemonade on the street. If you start being rude to consumers, from completely out of nowhere, then that is going to put people off.

Not only was Adornetto rude to her fans (and continues to be rude to Brigid19, who posted the link to Khanh’s Goodreads thread), she also had this to say about a bookstore event (with fellow author Adi Alsaid) in Glendale, California the other evening.

Adornetto Tweet 2

Now, I am sure that sometimes, events do not go as planned, and the guests leave early. Look no further than the Dashcon debacle with Noelle ‘Gingerhaze’ Stevenson and the Welcome To Night Vale crew earlier this summer. But, to the credit of both of those guests, they were very quick to explain why they had walked, and apologised profusely to the people they had let down. The Night Vale crew even tried to sort out refunds to their ticketed event as soon as they realised a multitude of fans had driven to this particular convention especially to see them.

Back on topic, though – according to the original Tweet from @Amber_M_Salinas, she drove for two hours to visit this particular bookstore, especially to see Adornetto. She wound up being three minutes late, and yet Adornetto had already left. No word on why, just that quickly-deleted Tweet you see above, where Adornetto slams not only her publishing company who organised the event, but also Harlequin’s assistant publicity manager, Jennifer ‘Jabbotage’ Abbots. Of course, we don’t know whether this was a case of diva behaviour, or the event management really being so incompetent that Adornetto got the hell out of dodge ASAP. Either way, common sense in PR dictates that you write an apology of sorts, or you quickly Tweet that you’ve had to leave the event early due to unforeseen circumstances.

That way, you don’t look like an ungrateful brat towards the very people who pay your salary.

I’m not just talking about the fans who buy the books. It might sound a bit over-dramatic to say this is Adornetto burning bridges, but honestly, why else would you Tweet something so heinously rude towards the very people who were willing to do everything to promote Ghost House? The hardcover’s been released, and an audiobook is available Audible and as a physical purchase. There was a spot (and a cover reveal) about Ghost House on MTV’s website. For most of August, there was a blog tour promoting the book. ARCs were provided at Book Expo America, and copies were distributed on NetGalley to get as many people reading it as possible. Adornetto also spent a lot of time and effort into filming the trailer for the book, and Harlequin posted eager updates before it was released.

The Halo trilogy was published by Macmillan/Feiwel and Friends, and Adornetto’s previous series was published by Harper Collins Australia. Harlequin Teen seemed like the perfect fit for Adornetto, who supposedly ‘knows how teen hearts beat’ according to the blurb of Heaven. All that promotion, and all that hype for Ghost House, and you’re going to toss it all away by being rude and ungrateful towards not only your bosses, but your fans and also people who post negative reviews? For shame.

This is not a case of people on GoodReads unfairly maligning Adornetto. It’s a case of her being incredibly rude and unprofessional to people for little reason. She is of the age to have graduated university, and yet she’s being responding to Brigid by quoting Mean Girls and generally taking the piss like an immature middle school kid.

Sure, it’s only a handful of Tweets, a few of which have been since deleted, but people screenshot Tweets. That one moment of what you might later call regrettable behaviour will be around to inform people’s opinions of you for a long time. Anybody who runs a business or promotes themselves as a creator has to know that sometimes, bad publicity is not ‘good publicity’. Sometimes it’s enough to really damage your reputation in the eyes of potential customers, which is why good PR skills on social media are not just an asset, but essential.

3 COMMENTS

  1. It’s sad that she’s now reacting like this. Honestly, it seems she had more maturity as a teen than as an adult. I read Ghost House and honestly was not that impressed. I thought Sarah’s review was very spot on. Twitter melt downs are (unfortunately) very common these days. What really raised my eyebrows was the Tweet about the event. I don’t think I’ve seen someone go off on their publishing/management like that before.

  2. Wow. How utterly unprofessional. Negative reviews happen. Poor publicity happens. The WORST thing an author can do is to mouth off like a 13-year-old with hurt feelings. Keep those feelings private and comport yourself as an adult in public.

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