At a recent meeting of my writing critique group, one of the authors mentioned how she uses reviews to choose what books she will read next. Her decision to read a work is influenced by what other readers have written. The numbers of stars and the enthusiasm of the reader all play a part in the choices she makes.
Many people don’t know the importance a review holds to an author’s standing. A friend of mine confirmed this lack of awareness when earlier this week she told me how much she enjoyed my debut novel, An Anchor On Her Heart. I asked her if she would consider writing me a review. Surprised, she said she hadn’t ever written one. I explained the role reviews play in helping an author’s standing in a world full of published books. She didn’t know.
Most readers don’t understand the power they have controlling how novels and authors are elevated in the publishing ranks. A book that someone likes and writes about will help another reader find their way to the title. The more reviews and stars an author garners determines how well promoted the book will be. Bookstores and distributors pay close attention to what is being said about each book, making decisions about whether or not they will carry the title in their offerings.
Unfortunately, there are those who do know the power of a review and will write one without reading the book, give it a low rating, and make derogatory comments about it. One author friend of mine received a review that said, “Skip it.” That’s not fair to a writer who has spent a year, maybe two, of their life crafting a story written from their heart. To condemn it without a fair reading is cruel.
Next time you finish a story you really enjoyed, don’t be silent. Go to one of the major distribution sites—Amazon books, Christian Book Distributors, Barnes and Noble, or Goodreads—and tell others what you thought. A sentence or two will do. Don’t write a synopsis of the story, just your opinion. Reward the author with stars. They’ll thank you for your effort.
Exciting News! My second novel in the Mended Hearts series, Love Calls Her Home, releases March 1. It is now available for pre-order on Kindle for $2.99 and in paperback for $12.99. Get your book on its way now. Let me know what you think after you read it. Thanks!