REVIEWS are essential, just like nourishing yourself with food, reviews do wonders for your branding. That is, of course, if they’re positive. On occasion they can be nasty, disheartening, or just plain ‘ole weird. There are trolls out there, who thrive on leaving terrible reviews. The kind that trashes your book but don’t take the time to clarify what is wrong. I mean…there’s feedback,and then there’s leaving constructive feedback. Oh, and some folks are just rude and crass. Those are the kind you want to just sweep under the rug. At the end of the day, it’s hard to take a reviewer/review seriously when they’re being an asshat about it.
I review books as well. I make it a personal policy of mine not to post anything that is below 3 stars, but I will rate it otherwise on Amazon, B & N, and Goodreads. This doesn’t make me any less as a reviewer, I just don’t think it’s fair to the author if I read something I didn’t like because I couldn’t get into it. If I can’t relate to the characters, or simply just not getting into the theme resulting in a DNF (did not finish) I won’t rate the book. I have read my fair share of those over the last 12 months, and its quite frustrating.
Let’s focus on the positive reviews, and how they can help you. They’re a great marketing tool for starters. Create graphics with your cover, and quote the reviewer. They’re attention grabbing, and one of the simplest of ways to help promote your latest release, or a book from your backlist. If it’s a review on a book that will be released soon, have the reviewer quoted on your cover. Cover endorsements from other authors are a great option, but we’ll go into that another day.
Use your positive reviews to your advantage, and there’s nothing shameful about it.
JUST BE NICE. Kindness goes a long, long way. We’re all at different places in our careers as romance authors. People will come and go in our lives on our journey to being published, so with that being said, sometimes success changes a person too. In some cases not for the best either. The best way to combat those moments is to shrug your shoulders, stretch your neck, and move on. Sure it can leave you hurtful, but there are somethings we can’t change, so drive that focus and energy into positive things like your current book.