Originally seen on January 11, 2012. Please enjoy my view on my very first bad review. I've had many, and this article still encompasses how I feel about it. The blessing is that those who do love my writing usually want to tell me personally and they tend to gather on my FB page. If you love my writing join us there. Join Me!
Recently I realized I had made it! I was not only a published author, I was a published author who was being read! What a glorious feeling. While watching my kids at karate I had this amazing three minutes. First, I received my very first random fan email. It was great! I love that I connected with someone I don't know. Someone who said, "I don't think I have ever been drawn to a book like this before!" Second, the person who inspired one of my characters said he couldn't wait for the book, he was going to build a shrine. Well now, that's something! Third, I found reviews and ratings on iTunes! I'm a solid 4 star read with over 195 ratings for The Executive's Decision. There were three reviews. Two of the reviews were 5 star. They loved the book, couldn't wait for the next one to come out. The third review was entitled Blah! Well this was a two star review from someone who didn't like my character and thought the story was boring and predictable.
Yep! That confirmed it! I had a bad review and that means I'm on the in!
Now you'd think I'd be upset. You'd think that wouldn't have wiped out my high, but no, just the opposite. I laughed. Not because I thought the person was wrong. In fact, every aspect (except the blah) of the review was right. My character is a woman trying to take back her life. She's a bit on edge. Some might not like her. Predictable? Yeah, maybe just a little. It is a romance. Many of those end with happily ever after, that's how I like em. But what was thrilling was that this person, who did not like my book, read it. As uncomfortable as I should have been reading the review, I realize she had been that uncomfortable reading the book. She downloaded something, and read and finished it, without liking it. She stepped out of her comfort zone, apparently to read my book. She used the freedom of her voice to give that opinion. And I used the freedom of my voice to create the book (which to remind you has 5 star reviews (minus this one.))
What would the world be if we all like the same thing? How boring and predictable would that be? We certainly wouldn't have the great opportunity of choosing our own paths in life. We wouldn't be able to climb ladders and advance. I'm not a fan of Regency Historical. Does that mean the world shouldn't' read it? Heavens no. I've given my book to men who smile, accept it, and will never crack the cover. And that's a-OK with me! I'm just thrilled that they can enjoy something different.
So to the person who wrote the Blah! review, thank you. Thank you for downloading my book (which you got for free, so I don't feel too bad.) Thank you for finishing it and for taking the time to go back online and write your thoughts. Thank you for using your words to express yourself and the freedom to do so. Isn't it wonderful? I would love to think you'll download another someday and maybe it'll be just the book for you. But then again... I'll bet you have a favorite and it might not be something I'd enjoy. Alas, we may not see eye to eye, but then again thanks to the freedoms we enjoy, I think we just might.
Always let your voice be heard. Its a freedom we should embrace. As much as I'd like to reel in the world with my words, for some I won't use the right words. For others, my words will change their lives. WOW, what an amazing opportunity we have in this country. Freedom to use our words.
Happy Reading (no matter what you enjoy reading!)