Old Posts: To polish or not to polish? | Alexia's Books and Such: Old Posts: To polish or not to polish?

“Books are for people who wish they were somewhere else.” ~ Mark Twain

Wednesday, February 25, 2015

Old Posts: To polish or not to polish?

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The last time my computer crashed, it crashed hard. I lost everything, including all the pictures that I had uploaded to my reviews. Because I had saved the bookcover pictures I used in my reviews to my hard drive, when my PC crashed, all the pictures disappeared. Now I use photobucket to play it safe, but I'm left with lots of old reviews with no pictures.

One of my goals this year is to replace the missing pictures. I like seeing what the bookcovers look like when I'm reading reviews, so assume that others do as well.

Well, I didn't get very far. While I was charmed to see what my old reviews looked like (wish I could write short reviews like that again!), I hadn't included any information about the book. No title, Goodreads link, author's name, synopsis, etc. Just my review, all alone in all its glory.

So I added the missing information to one review, then stopped because I wasn't sure if I should continue. Was I destroying my old reviews by bringing them up to my current standards? If I changed them, then I'd lose the record of how I began. What to do?

I once heard a story about an old sailor who went into a tattoo parlor to have his tattoos retouched. The tattoo artist tried to talk him out of it, pointing out that if the faded tattoos were retouched, then they wouldn't be 40 year old tattoos any more. They may have been old and faded, but they were the originals and told a story. Not sure if the sailor took the artist's advice or not, but I've always liked that story.

So now I'm left with a dilemma about whether or not I should update my old reviews.

On the one hand, I could preserve my old reviews and just add the bookcovers. I'm 99% sure that I had bookcovers on all of my reviews, so I'd just be replacing something without any new additions. That way I'd have a record of my old reviews and can always look back to see how they've evolved.

On the other hand, I could update the reviews to include all the missing information and bring them up to par, so to speak. I've read more than one post recommending that we polish our old reviews to breathe new life into them and expose them to new audiences.

I'm leaning towards just adding the bookcover and not messing with the original review. But then the anal part of me speaks up and wants to update everything!

So please help me out? Do you update your old reviews? Am I making a mountain out of a molehill and shouldn't even worry about the missing pictures? Does anyone care if there's a link to Goodreads? Do you want a synopsis? I put the title and author's name in the post title, so is that enough? I need advice, as the voices in my head keep arguing! 

20 comments:

  1. I say leave them alone. The only clean up I've done in the past is remove a no longer good youtube video, or correct a spelling error I run across. I've never really trolled through my posts to do it, but if I need to look at an older post, I'll do it then.

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    1. I wouldn't have even noticed if I wasn't working on removing dead links, so guess no good deed goes unpunished! lol

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  2. Whilst I can see the positives in polishing old reviews I'm with Ryan in that I leave well alone unless I come across a really obvious typing error. Apart from anything else with time spent doing new reviews at a premium I dare say not many of us have time to go back making these additions.

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    1. You're right, I should concentrate on my backlog of new reviews. I do want to add bookcovers to my old reviews, but think I'll stop there.

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  3. I agree with how you are leaning. Maybe add the pictures, but don't worry about updating them. I, too, think it's fun to go back and see my old self through reviews! It's fun and scary at the same time!

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    1. Fun and scary is a good description, as I don't even remember reading some of these books! And boy, wish I could write short reviews again! I can't seem to shut up now, so my reviews keep getting longer and longer....

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  4. I like the idea of seeing how you've evolved. I wouldn't worry about totally editing the posts. If you want to add covers, because you had them before, then go ahead, but otherwise, I like to think we should focus more on what we're doing NOW and less on polishing up the older posts.

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    1. Good point! I sort of like seeing my old reviews and how they're different from what I'm doing now.

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  5. I'm so lazy I wouldn't touch them up. I like the idea of being able to look back and see how I used to do things. I would just add the book covers and let it be.

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    1. I'm lazy too, so think I'll just add the book covers and call it a day!

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  6. I've thought about it from time to time, but then I decide to leave them be. Things are always changing in the way we do things and I'm okay with that. We learn something and we changes things. We even drop things. Who knows, in the future you might go back and realize something you did you want to do again. I think they would be great just the way they are. :)

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    1. Thanks Melissa! Think I'm going to just add the covers and resist updating anything else!

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  7. The perfectionist is me really wants to update my old book reviews. But whenever I look at my posts, I get really overwhelmed.

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    1. You're right that it would be overwhelming because there are so many old posts, so that's another good reason to let things be!

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  8. Leave them..it chronicles our growth as bloggers

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    1. Good point! Think I'm going to just re-add the covers and let the rest of the post stay as-is.

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  9. Yikes I don't think I could handle that. I'd want SOME info with it at least for others if they click through them. It's one thing to have it chronicle your time as a blogger and leaving the review as is but not having links/title/etc included is different for me. I'd need all that info on those posts.

    Do you not let Blogspot just use picasa or whatever it's back up is for images? That's how mine are done.

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    1. I think that my mistake was saving the pictures to my hard drive and never backing up my blog. I know better now!

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  10. I don't update any of my old reviews. I try to keep them as is, to remind myself of where I have been and how far I have come. And, there are some really bad stuff way back when!

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    1. I know what you mean, Tif! Going through some of my old posts is a little embarrassing, but I've also found a few gems too!

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