You READ – but do you leave REVIEWS?

Hear, Hear… Chris hits the nail on the head about leaving reviews. No one I know supports us authors more than Chris does… Check out his blog if you haven’t already folks!

Chris The Story Reading Ape's Blog

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If not, why not?

I don’t have time

The author probably spent a heck of a lot more time writing the story than you took to read it, no matter how slow you think you are, so why not take a few minutes to record your feelings about it.

I can’t write long fancy reviews like those I see on book review blogs

You don’t have to, Amazon, for example, only ask you to use a minimum of 25 non repeating words.

I can’t express myself very well

No-one is asking you to produce a literary masterpiece, start off with things you liked, didn’t like or a mix of both about the book, e.g.,

I liked this book because –

it reminded me of –

it made me think about –

it made me so scared I couldn’t sleep for –

it made me feel homesick for –

it made…

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23 comments

  1. I only tend to review Indie pubbed books, as they need and appreciate it more, I think. Have got a bit behind though… trying hard to catch up! I should be more disciplined and review immediately after reading, and before starting my next read, but I am too impatient to move onto my next read! Then I get behind…

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  2. Thank you Kev for writing solutions to this thorny issue. I even hesitated to write this comment.

    I’ve written many encouraging book reviews for others, posting them on my blog. It personally hurts when I hear the excuses I get from those who don’t give me the same courtesy. I do have one lovely lady who has been very sick and that’s a legitimate reason but really, others can’t get to it a year later??? Tell me please, won’t the author risk getting a bad review by pointing out the obvious? (I love these people as friends and friendship is certainly worth more than a review.) I’ve just kind of chalked it up to balancing friendships because no one is perfect but it certainly squelches my enthusiasm to write. Blessings back,

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    • Hi Ellie, It’s Chris who wrote this. (The Story Reading Ape) However, I much appreciate your comment which does highlight some of the frustrations reviewers some author/reviewers face. We are a community of writers that should be supporting each other, albeit in a genuine fashion. I would rather have a honest poor review to no review. However, I would not go as far as letting reviews or the lack of reviews affect the friendships I’ve built in the community. A bit of courtesy does go a long way though all the same. 🙂

      Liked by 1 person

  3. Thanks for sharing the post. I always try to write a review for a book. I think the authors need to hear the feedback. Authors take so much of their time and put so much of their heart and soul in to their writing, we should let them know when we enjoy it!

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  4. I was going to leave a comment after the article but saw it already had 211 comments . . . and I figured two things; one, whatever I was going to say has already been said and, two, even if not, do authors of posts read every comment and do they care about them equally? From experience, I can tell you “no.”

    My rough rule of thumb is 50 comments. Any more, and you’re going to be lost in the noise so you’re basically writing for your own satisfaction and ego (yes, I’m doing that here, but there are only five comments ahead of mine here — or at least that was the number when I started writing this). OK, I kid; I don’t need my ego stroked, but I do have an opinion regarding the article.

    I think that is the same with books. When I see a book has hundreds of reviews, I don’t see the value added of including mine.

    There’s another aspect that post leaves out . . .

    In listening to interviews with authors, many say they avoid reading the reviews because they can be too emotionally draining. Some authors read reviews but say they ignore certain reviews if they don’t agree with the reviewer. Other authors love getting positive reviews and ignore anything below a 4 out of 5 rating review (they don’t read 3 or lower ratings).

    Notice, I’m not saying this; they are, the authors themselves. In fact, a lot of advice out there specifically states that one should concentrate on writing and not worry a whole lot — if at all — about reviews.

    Of course, the advice also says to engage with the readers, but they are then referring to fans (people who not only like the books but are deeply affected by them) and that makes sense. That’s a business decision. And, truth be told, if I really love something, I’ll be motivated to leave a review. On the other hand, if it was just OK and I say so, I then feel the need to explain what did and didn’t work for me . . . something that I’m sure will get ignored (as it rightly should because it’s only my opinion and my reaction).

    And, it’s not just authors, is it? If you buy anything, go out to eat, or interact with any commercial enterprise, you’re asked to rate the experience, to give feedback, to voice how you feel about the experience. I wrote about this annoying practice, but that’s beside the point.

    OK, this is getting too long (verbose, I’ve been accused of being), so let me end it here.

    Attention:
    In an effort to improve my comment leaving practices, please review and rate the above comment on a scale of 1 (amazing insight into the human condition) to 5 (poo-slinging monkeys offer a better experience than reading the above).

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    • Amazing insight as far as I’m concerned… Anyone who takes this amount of time to write a comment most certainly deserves a response even if it was rescued from the spam folder. (Tee-hee-hee) I can’t disagree with anything you have said here, all your statements have very valid points that would hold up any argument for review discussion and commenting.

      Personally, I read all my reviews… good or bad, disagree or not, and try to take something fom them if I can. Besides, the reviews I write go anywhere from one to five stars, although I tend to do some research first before I buy one so most of my reviews do end up being in the 3-5 star range.

      I’ve done the same for other products I’ve bought as well. One thing I don’t get is when someone writes a review that says, they didn’t read a book ’cause they couldn’t get into it… Why review it at all if you didn’t read it? Now if it was so full of errors that you couldn’t concentrate on anything else, that’s a different matter. But say so… explain why you couldn’t get into it.
      ..
      Like yourself, I don’t rate a work on how many reviews it has either. I will however read two or three reviews on a work I’m interested in, but not just the five star reviews. I like to see what folks are saying in the middle and on the other end of the scale too.

      Thanks for your wonderful comment… It doesn’t hurt to have a little satisfaction and ego boost. 😀

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      • If interested, there are a couple of sites that will evaluate reviews (on Amazon, at least) and give you a sense of the quality of reviews. I’ll link them in the next reply because the links will likely have it go to spam.

        I follow the same procedure for reading reviews, both for my own stuff (I’m not published, so my reviews are neither numerous nor broad-based) as I do for when I evaluate my interest in a book.

        That is, I concentrate on the middle ratings (2, 3, 4). Again, per my experience, those tend to list both the good and bad about what is being reviewed. I view effusive praise and harsh criticism with the same suspicion — there’s a bias at work. Unless, of course, all the reviews are at one of the two ends of the spectrum. In which case, there’s probably something to it.

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        • It’s an interesting point about the 2,3,4 reviews you’ve made which I honestly haven’t thought about myself. They probably do lend themselves to the more genuine side of things. I do however tend to approach some 5 and 1 reviews with more skepticism. Look forward to reading the links on your next reply which I have received… busy day today though… BBQ & family. 😉

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      • These two sites use different metrics, but will give you a good idea of how much trust you should put on the reviews you read:
        https://reviewmeta.com/amazon/B01N6HKIN8
        http://fakespot.com/product/secondborn-secondborn-series-book-1

        Those two links are an evaluation of the reviews for a book I recently read (one of the few I liked) for which I did write a review. I reviewed two other books I’ve read but didn’t bother with a few that I didn’t like (for a variety of reasons).

        This link explains the difference between the two methodologies for rating reviews:
        https://reviewmeta.com/blog/fakespot-vs-reviewmeta-for-analyzing-reviews/

        That said, for traditionally published books, the quality of the reviews is generally quite high.

        If you want my rant about “rating the experience” . . .
        https://dispersertracks.com/2016/03/15/truly-exceptional-and-cruisers-xi-the-details-part-ii/

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