It’s Boricuan Bookworm’s first year, and as part of the celebration, different authors will be stopping by to talk about different first experiences.
Today is the last day of our celebration, but we’ve not been short of insightful thoughts and stuff for your enjoyment. Last but not least, we have one of our very favorite authors and friend, Karen Hooper! She’ll be sharing with us today about her first “bad” book review, because want it or not, every author has to go through that some time in their career:
My First “Bad” Book Review
Ahh, the power of firsts.
First love, first time riding a bike without training wheels, my first bad book review: they all ended with me in tears. Ha. Kidding. Sort of.
My first bad book review? Honestly, I can’t tell you who wrote it, or when, or even what it said. I’m thinking this must mean I wasn’t too hurt by it, because I DO remember (vividly) my first love and crashing my bike the first time I lost my training wheels.
A bad review is simply one person’s opinion. And here is a fact that is absolutely certain: no one will ever write a novel that EVERY one loves. People are just too different, and so are their tastes in everything from food to books.
As an author, I expect people to dislike my books. I write about fantasy, make believe creatures and super powers, ideas and universal concepts that many may not believe in or even like, so my stuff isn’t for everyone. But as long as there are readers out there who love my stories (*waves happily to those fabulous people*), the bad reviews don’t bother me.
Tangled Tides was my first published novel. When reviews started coming in for that book, the main thing some readers complained about was my usage of seagarettes and C-weed. Some thought the words were stupid, others childish, and some hated smoking so it turned them off. (I get it. I hate cigarettes too. Yuck.) Was there any point in explaining that those two items were a minor detail in the book, and that the seaweed they smoke is actually HEALTHY for them? No. I never argue with bad reviews. I shrug, accept that it wasn’t for that particular reader, and continue on with life and writing my next story.
Do I read all the bad reviews about my books? No. I wish I had that much free time, but lately, I barely have enough hours in the day to eat and sleep. Sadly, I rarely read any reviews—even the positive ones—unless they are posted within the first couple weeks of the book releasing. I read all reviews during that time to make sure the story doesn’t completely bomb (thankfully, so far, that hasn’t happened) and then I move onto my next project.
The upside to bad reviews? Some negative reviews provided constructive feedback that helped me improve my writing, or strengthened the next book in the series, and I’m grateful to those reviewers for taking the time to read and present what they didn’t like in a respectful and helpful way.
Whether a review is good or bad, we authors appreciate them immensely because they help readers decide what to read next. That’s what all this review business is about, isn’t it? The books? Because it should be. *coughs and shakes head at all the Goodreads fighting and drama*
By far, my favorite part about reviews is the amazing people I’ve met. All because they posted a review of my book, I said thanks, and a connection was made. I’m delighted to call several readers friends because of the relationships we formed while discussing books and such on blogs or Goodreads. (Like Jennifer and Marianne!) Those friendships are so dear to me, and well worth the occasional bad review from readers who don’t “get me” because I have connected with many who do. ❤
Long live book reviews! (Good or bad.)
And Happy Blogaversary to two of my most favorite reviewers ever, Jennifer and Marianne! ❤
About Karen Hooper
Karen was born and bred in Baltimore, frolicked and froze in Colorado for a couple of years, and is currently sunning and splashing around Florida with her two beloved dogs. She’s addicted to coffee, chocolate, and complicated happily-ever-afters.
Karen has been making up stories for as long as she can remember. Due to her strong Disney upbringing, she still believes in fairy tales and will forever sprinkle magic throughout all of her novels.
Connect with Karen!
There will be 1 winner for this giveaway! Karen was very awesome, as always, in joining us for our celebration and has donated a signed copy of ANY of her books to one lucky winner. To enter, click on the Rafflecopter link below.
- Open US ONLY
- Duplicate Entries will be erased, , with the exception of sharing the giveaway (See details in the rafflecopter).
- LYING on an entry will result in the discualification of the participant.
- Must be 13 or older to Participate
Thanks for Celebrating with us today! Come back tomorrow for more awesome Giveaways!
Check out previous Giveaways in this Blogaversary by clicking, here.