Over the course of my relatively short writing career, I’ve noticed varying reactions from writers you and old, new and well-worn, when it comes to that truly horrifying thing – the 1-Star Review Duh-duh-daaaahh!!!
What you really should be concerned with just how many you have for any given piece of work. Trust me, we all get them. There is absolutely no way to please everyone. And you won’t. You’re not that special. I mean it. I’m not being a dick, I’m just sayin’, everyone that writes and releases their books to the public will have a number of people that do not get it, do not like it, do not want it near anyone that they care about….seriously.
For newbies, this first low rating/bad review can be devastating. It doesn’t have t be. Just consider it another of those “Welcome to the Club” moments. Honestly, this is the age of back-pats, coddles, friends and family reviews, and many other nefarious review sorcery. If you’re actively seeking reviews (which I think everyone promoting their work should be doing), you’re gonna ruin someone’s week with your writing. And if you do have a bunch of people cheering your work, you might still be knocked silly by that one bad apple. Don’t let it ruin you.
Now, to be fair, we do live in that nefarious review sorcery world…sometimes, you will get blasted by a troll. Someone who is sick of the good reviews, doesn’t like your online persona, or really, really didn’t like that your characters listened to Poison, Skid Row, and Pretty Boy Floyd. If you’ve been trolled, take it as a compliment. You’re important enough to irritate someone so much they attack you. Good for you!
As for me, I take the good reviews with the bad. Check this one out:
Kimberly Bain’s Reviews > Blood And Rain
byGlenn Rolfe(Goodreads Author)
Writing style is amateurish and simple. Very poorly done. Save your money and find a better option. Written by a middle schooler…
See? Kimberly judo-chopped me pretty good. Did it sting? I’d be lying if I said it didn’t, but I didn’t let it bug me for long. I just rolled with it. You can’t please them all.
Plus, I have enough good or okay reviews that it makes ones like these easier to shrug off. And so will you.
Keep your chin up, roll with it, and don’t let the bastards grind you down.
I do have a number of these fine reviews. Including one from a reviewer who read, like, eight pages and 1-starred me. I’m just telling you that it’s gonna happen. Feel the pain, then move forward.
And if you have weaknesses in your writing (and we all do), don’t be afraid to reexamine some of the things the lower-starred reviewers point out. They might help you correct them in your current or future work.
I believe in you.