Saturday, May 30, 2020

Authors Love Reviews

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It's True! Authors Love Reviews!

Most authors love to get reviews. Especially good reviews.

But even bad reviews are helpful.

Besides the opportunity to learn from mistakes and errors, Amazon counts bad reviews as well as good reviews in the number of reviews for a book.

A higher number of reviews is factored into the book's Amazon rank, though no one outside Amazon's development team knows exactly how that works.

I've seen authors ask for good reviews only, but in my opinion, that is short-sighted.

What Authors Learn from Bad Reviews

Bad reviews occur for a number of reasons, including the reader simply didn't like the book, the book didn't meet expectations, the book was riddled with grammatical and spelling errors, or the author made a mistake.

There are as many reasons for bad reviews as there are reviewers.

Since I began my author's journey in 2017, there are a number of things I have learned from bad reviews:

  • I inadvertently changed a character's name (sometimes in the same paragraph. EEEKK!)
  • While moving chapters, instead of moving them, I duplicated them
  • I changed the spelling on a character's name
  • When I purposely changed a character's name, I did a global search and replace, without realizing the character's name was also the name of a month that was used in a scheduling scene. Thus my book had a month called Violet.

Some of these were quite funny. There are more. I am grateful to the reviewers who pointed out these issues, since it gave me the opportunity to correct them and upload the new files to Amazon.

At present, I have corrections to make that will be completed and uploaded over the next two weeks. Keep an eye on the Your Content and Devices section of your Amazon account to update the books you have.

What Authors Learn from Good Reviews

First and foremost, reviews help authors learn that their writing isn't crap. Even many-times published authors fall prey to doubt at times. Good reviews help bolster them through bad times, which include working with recalcitrant characters who insist on going a different direction than you thought they would, cruel comments from readers or fellow authors (not to be confused with constructive reviews or comments), and even the fear that the next book will never be as well-received as the last.

Reviews such as this one on Wolf's Duty start my day right and make me want to write more!

Amazon Review
To Read this on Amazon, click the image of the review, then click Top Reviews and select Most Recent.

I was always told to never make a decision on a blue day. I try to live by that. The times I didn't I most often regretted the decisions I made. On blue days, I reread my four- and five-star reviews. They help cheer me up when nothing seems to be going right.

Among the things I learn from good reviews are which characters readers most identify with and which storylines they want to continue. Magnus (Wolf's Quest, Wolf's Guard, Wolf's Duty, Wolf's Dragon) came about because someone wondered what would happen with Bess.  Stacy (Wolf's Heart, and hinted at in Wolf's Duty) became Jonathan's mate when a reader worried about the faithful beta in my series.

So, the most important things I get from reviews are ideas for new stories and books.

Take care,

Texas Ranch Wolf Pack Series