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Author Quick Tip: How to Deal With Negative Reviews

So, your book or book series has been out for quite some time and so far, you've received mostly five stars with few scattered three and fours here and there. And then out of the blue, you get hit with that single one star review and comment that reads, "I hated it. Could've been better" or "I cOuLdN't uNdErStAnD wHeRe ThE wRiTeR wAs GoInG wItH iT so it's a no for me."

Fortunately, the more you write and continue to build your catalogue the more readers you will attract. Unfortunately, with that comes those who enjoy trolling authors; grammar police, the self -proclaimed editors/proof readers; and just all sorts of individuals with an opinion. Remember, EVERYONE has an opinion regardless if you agree with it or not; and opinions do not equal facts. Some people are just downright cruel when leaving a review and yes, sometimes it can be a blow to your ego. Some reviews will hurt your feelings.

But keep in mind that a negative review is not a reflection of you as an author or as an individual. Words, whether they are written or spoken reflect the hidden truths of its place of origin - the person who spoke them. The nastier the review, the nastier the nature is of the person who left that review. Now granted, people have a right to dislike the work of other people. And sometimes, the individual may like most of the books you've written except for this one particular book that you have written and that is fine. But when they take time out of their day to leave a comment with the intent to ruin your day or even discourage you from continuing with your writing journey, THEY are the problem. Not you.

There is a difference between a scathing, hateful review and a critique. An avid reader who is leaving a critique will point out both the positive and the negative: what they loved, and what you as the author could possibly improve upon. A critique is still an opinion, it does not mean that what he or she is saying is true and factual. However, it is an opportunity for you as the author to get a general idea of what you need to do to strengthen your writing. The journey of a writer is a lifetime of growth and continuous learning. It does not matter how great of a storyteller you are, there is always, ALWAYS room for improvement.

Now as far as those downright mean reviews, measure how many negative, nasty comments left under your title(s) against the positive, helpful ones. Chances are you will receive more positive than negative and focus on that. There is no way any author will be able to satisfy every single reader that stumbles across his/her book(s). Like the saying goes, "You can't please everybody." And it's true.

Take the good with the bad, it happens to the best of us. But most importantly...

Keep writing!

PS: If you are an author or an aspiring writer, download the MJB Author Tips and Art of Storytelling quick Guide!

Author Tips and The Art of Story Telling
Download PDF • 219KB

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