Happy Monday! Today I would like to discuss the topic of bad reviews. I don’t care how thick some tout their skin to be, bad reviews hurt. When I published my first novella in the spring of 2014, I had heard some of the horror stories associated with bad reviews, and although I was elated to finally have something published–a goal I had been working toward for many years–it hit me that now I had entered new territory. Gone were the days of writing whatever I wanted without criticism. Now, whatever I published came under the scrutiny of many eyes, some kinder than others.
How to survive a bad review?
I’ve heard from more seasoned authors that they refuse to read reviews. But would that work for me? As I learned the ropes of publishing, it became apparent that the number of reviews, the average ratings, and the books’ rankings, were questions asked on almost every book advertising site I contacted. In short, my answer was no. Avoiding reviews wouldn’t work.
Should I just suck it up and read the bad reviews? Been there. Done that. It hurts. I’m not gonna lie.
That’s when I came up with the author’s checklist for surviving reviews. Authors, feel free to fill in the blanks with your own answers.
- List three of your most favorite, un-putdownable books:
- List a one-star review for each of the books you chose in question 1.
- List three of your best, most insightful five star reviews of your own book.
You might think you’re done after filling in the blanks. You’re not. It is now your duty to read and re-read the checklist after every negative review that comes through.
Writing is subjective. There isn’t a book on this planet that every person will love. Of course, it is the author’s duty to ensure the book has been properly written and researched, well-formatted, etc., but those who truly want to succeed in this industry have to be prepared for the occasion when someone reads their book and just doesn’t like it–plain and simple.
Leave me a comment and let me know how you answered your questions!