Posts Tagged ‘reviews’

I want to throw a question out to some of you who are authors. On Zoe Winters’ blog, we were talking about reviews and how crazy and mean some readers are, etc. I was going to ask this question on her blog (since there are so many more people following it), but I didn’t want to use her blog for my own ramblings. The question is, how many of you actually respond to reviews on Amazon or other places? Does it depend on what the reviewer says or how personal they get with you? I recently responded to some negative reviews, and I got responses back from two different readers. One was kind of hateful and basically said authors shouldn’t respond to negative reviews because it was like a kid trying to get a better grade from a teacher or something like that. The other reader was very nice and explained more about why he hadn’t liked the book. My whole intent was to find out why they didn’t like it. I did probably piss off the first reader because she had said that “Blind Freddy” could have seen the twist coming. I thought that was a little too sarcastic, and said something to the effect that “Blind Freddy” must be good at that sort of thing, but none of my beta readers figured it out. I was also trying to interject some humor in my comment. Didn’t work. LOL Later I thought I probably should have let all of it go. But I’m one of those people who is laid back and easy going most of the time. So when something gets to me, it REALLY gets to me. Since things usually don’t. :0)

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5 star/1 Star

I’ve been thinking a lot about reviews lately. I’ve suddenly gotten a couple of 1 star reviews and I almost stopped writing. I wondered what the point was. But I started thinking about the 5 stars I had. Some from people I knew and some from readers I didn’t know. I began to wonder how there could be such a big difference in opinion. I started researching other people’s books. For instance, a lot of indie authors seem to really love a certain fellow indie, and her books are pretty high up in the Amazon Kindle store. She’s doing great. But I didn’t particularly like one of her books I read. I gave it 4 stars, but that was kind of generous. That doesn’t mean someone else didn’t like it. I looked at some other books that I really loved…and found some 1 star ratings on the books. I’m wondering how this could be. The last book I read was awesome in my opinion. But it got some pretty bad reviews. Luckily, it had many more good ones. Again, what a difference in opinion. How one reader can see the characters as flat and one-dimensional and another reader can see them as well developed and real is beyond me. But if we were all alike, the world would be so boring.

Having said all that, I want to say that I will not give a lower rating than 3 stars. It would have to be the worst drivel I have ever read for me to even think about doing that. I would rather not write a review at all. There’s really not much of an excuse to give bad ratings when both Amazon and Smashwords let the readers read a sample before buying. Just don’t buy the book! The biggest reason that I don’t want to give bad reviews is because I just might be wrong. It’s just an opinion. And I don’t think my opinion is supreme. The writing would have to be so obviously bad, and the errors be so prevalent, that I couldn’t stand to read it.

I want to point out that I don’t feel the same way about products. Some products are just bad and don’t work properly. So I would give a bad review in some of those cases. But when it comes to books, movies, music, etc., there is way too much opinion involved. And I’m not going to hurt an author’s rating just because I didn’t like it. Let the readers decide…again, samples. Yes, I know I’m too nice. But there it is. Some 1 star reviews I’ve read aren’t just people giving opinions…they are malicious and downright ugly. Sometimes I think people get off on doing that. I want to be able to sleep at night. That’s just me. I know a lot of people don’t agree with me, but I don’t really care. My opinion is as good as anyone else’s and vice versa.

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