Authors are in a unique position of both wanting reviews of their books and dreading them. The thing is, in order to be a writer, you have to be rather sensitive by nature. If you aren’t sensitive, you aren’t going to notice the things that most people don’t… and if you aren’t noticing those things, then why on earth should someone read what you write?
So, you must be sensitive, to start, and you need reviews. Reviews require a very thick skin on the author’s part. Reviews are necessary and wonderful and completely none of my business if I want to keep an emotional even keel! Yes, I will send out books asking for honest reviews, and I do feel a wave of relief when I see five star reviews, but reviews are just terrible on the writing process for sensitive people.
Now, positive reviews are great! They make you feel like all your hard work was worth it, and they leave you with a healthy glow. Negative reviews hurt, and they can make you second guess every word you type afterward.
So my personal way of handling this is to not go looking for reviews of my books. I might check up to see if people who requested the book for review purposes followed through, and I might notice an average star rating, and I HAVE been known to stop and read a review or two, I’m only human… but I would NEVER, EVER respond to them!
Because readers deserve to devour books–discuss, review, love, hate, feel ambivalence for… That’s the the role of the reader, and once my book is written and out there, it is no longer my business how the readers engage with my books. And they shouldn’t have to worry about the author peering over their shoulder while they do it.
Unless they want to contact me and tell me they love it, of course… That’s always nice!
And the rest of the time? I’m writing. It’s what I’m good at, and it makes me happy.
Have you ordered my new book yet?
And calling for backup!
Police officer Mike McMann is always cool under pressure, but taking custody of his infant nephew has left him in a cold sweat. Coming to his rescue is social worker Paige Stedler. Paige gives him a crash course on parenting—and a tempting glimpse into a life beyond the badge. But is Mike ready to trade in his SWAT team aspirations for a white picket fence?