Writing Reviews-If you can’t say something nice…


Over the last few years I’ve talked with lots of authors and folks who review books. It’s been a while since I’ve done a book review, something I plan on remedying! I’ve read many books that touch me in a very deep and personal way and want to read again. I’ve read some that I’ve enjoyed, but once around was good enough for me. And then there have been many horribly written books I’ve tried to read, which I usually quit reading after the first couple of chapters.

I LOVE to review the ones I love! I’ll review the ones I’ve enjoyed, and I won’t review a book if I don’t like it, or if it’s poorly written–no matter how good the story line is.

Now, just because I bought your book and haven’t reviewed it, there could be another reason why. It’s either buried in that stack on my nightstand, on my dresser, on my bookshelf, or within the depths of my Kindle and I just haven’t gotten to it yet. For someone who loves to write, it’s frustrating to be such a slow reader.

So, Here are some of my reasons for not posting a bad review:

1. I know what it’s like to be a beginning writer and have someone tell you your writing isn’t very good. That’s devastating to a new writer. I know how much it hurt me when I was a newbie writer. Even the kindest bad review is still painful. Janette Rallison, author of too many books to name, very gently and kindly told me what was wrong with my writing. Of course, to my young tender heart that meant, “Your writing sucks.” I know Janette would never say that, but that’s what I heard. I’m just glad she told me in private and not plastered  it all over the internet like a bad review would have done. Since then I’ve published that book! I swallowed my pride and really listened to what she had to say that needed fixing.

This is the book Janette told me “it sucked.” (Not really) It’s received many 4 and 5 star reviews, and one 1 star review that said, “it sucked.” (Really)

2. My second reason for not posting a bad review is that sometimes I just don’t connect with a book. Often a book I did not like, someone else LOVED. Not everyone likes my book either. **See above picture. That one star review did more to damage my poor little writer heart than all the other glowing reviews. I won’t do that to another writer.

3. Another reason I won’t give a bad review is because you just never know what is happening in someone’s life. It is amazing to me how cruel people can be when they are anonymous. when they can hide behind an alias. My dear friend, Sarah Eden, is one of the funniest writers I know. Do I like Regency Romance? NOPE, not at all. But I will read Sarah’s books from time to time because she’s got this great sense of humor. She shared with us at a writer’s conference just how horrible reviewers can be. She tried to laugh it off, but we could all tell that they truly affected her. This is THE number one reason why I will not write a bad review. Did you know my beloved friend suffers from rheumatoid arthritis so bad that she must give herself shots to get through the day. She wears compression gloves because the pain is so great in her hands. And my precious friend can hardly type anymore because of her disease.

4. Last, but not a big reason for not writing bad reviews is that agents and publishers read what you review. I like to think that a prospective agent/publisher might consider publishing one of my books, because they know I will write good reviews for their other authors.

I love Thumper’s philosophy: “If you can’t say something nice, don’t say anything at all.”

And this book is another one of “Janette’s let me help you fix it!” books. You can purchase both Identity and Soulfire by following this link.