17 Oct Sharing Your Author Love
Checking in this October Saturday morning on what has been a relatively quiet week.
I posted this past Monday on 7 Criminal Mind blogspot. The question was about a bad review we once received and asked us to respond. You can read my post here. Four other authors answered the same question on the days following me and a common theme emerged. We appreciate reviews and don’t mind constructive, thoughtful ones, but the one-star or nasty reviews are hurtful and not helpful. We even learned that some people give one-star reviews to lower the score of a book doing very well in order to bring it back to the pack. I’ve noticed a few Goodreads readers posting a lot of one-star reviews on an excessive number of books that nobody could possible have read, supporting this possibility.
You might even ask why authors get so focused on receiving reviews. There are a couple of reasons. Today, more than ever, it’s difficult to get word out about a new release. Someone who takes the time to review the book favourably will likely tell their friends and bookclubs and will spread the word. A lot of reviews generates some buzz. Some of the reviewers have blogs and followers with a solid reach.
Even better than reader reviews, say on Goodreads, are reviews in major, national newspapers. Getting a glowing review from Margaret Cannon in The Globe and Mail ensures a jump in sales, and being reviewed in The New York Times is author gold. (My understanding is the the NY Times only reviews hardcover books unless this has changed.)
I’ve also heard that a number of reader reviews on Amazon ups the book’s position on recommended reads (“Since you ordered this book, you might like ….”) A minimum of ten reviews is needed to give the book some leverage. This is turning out to be a difficult time for the publishing/book industry. Sales and good reviews go hand in hand and also keep a publisher’s interest in accepting an author’s follow up book.
All this to say, if you have a chance to post a review for my books or another author you enjoy, please consider doing so. Even a couple of words or a sentence is appreciated. There really is strength in numbers. Good places to post include Amazon (you must have purchased your book from them), Chapters/Indigo, Barnes & Noble, Goodreads, Twitter, Facebook, Instagram, public libraries … It’s also great to repost reviews and help spread the word.
So to end my post this morning, I’m giving a test of autumn in the woods not far from my house. I wish you a lovely week.