Do you read your book reviews? How do you deal with bad or good ones?
Yes. I love to read reviews. It takes a lot of hard work to write a novel and it’s always informative to learn what someone thought of it.
If someone didn’t enjoy a story, I like to know why. Some times it’s because the story wasn’t appropriate for them. We’ve all picked up books and discovered, whilst the genre, blurb and promo materials all suggest it’s exactly what we’re looking for, it’s not quite what right for our palate.
And there are times when a critic will be correct and make a valid point that I hadn’t previously considered. I admit, it’s difficult to accept this but it’s vital that I do so, as a writer, I can grow.
Admittedly there are some reviews that I’ve chosen to ignore. The one that started with the words, “You can tell this book was written by a woman…” clearly came from someone who is not just an idiot: they’re also a sexist idiot. I also chose to ignore the two star review that had been given to one of my titles, because the book had never been published. The cover art had been uploaded by the publisher but, prior to publication, the publishing house had gone into liquidation. Consequently my title was never released by them but still, someone decided this book they’d never read was only worth two stars. We’re told to understand that criticism is never personal but, in that case, the criticism could not be anything but personal.
However, I have no intention of dwelling on the negative criticism, regardless of whether it’s just on unjust. I read all reviews and, when someone says nice things, I am genuinely flattered, happy and delighted.
And if anyone reading this has ever left me a review (positive or otherwise), I’d just like to thank you for taking the time. It’s much appreciated.