Why authors should never comment on negative reviews of their own books

Great article. Something to keep in mind.

Thought Scratchings

You’ve written a book. It’s been published. Your agent told you that he/she has never read a book like it. Your publisher has told you that your voice is entirely unique. The quotes from celebrities on the front cover of your book reinforce this sense of untouchable brilliance. The first fifty amazon reviews have flooded in from industry people who are encouraged to display kindness. Traction begins…but all of these opinions are inherently biased.

Then comes the first negative review from Jeremy, from Hounslow. Your brain immediately reacts by telling you that Jeremy must be mentally ill. Then you decide he must be a troll. (Because you’ve convinced yourself that you are so special, that there are people alive who spend their free time attacking your books, hoping you say something, because that’s how you think they think they will get famous. Even though nobody read your last novel.) So…

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2 thoughts on “Why authors should never comment on negative reviews of their own books

  1. Interesting insight, thanks for sharing!
    This is where the fandom culture is felt: I automatically read this while thinking of negative conscrit… and well, it doesn’t have to be. If there’s no visible point in responding and it only comes from an ego thing, better refrain indeed! One can learn from negative opinions, and find out what to improve, and in that case, I would kind of lean towards responding and interacting, showing openness… but it truly depends on the case. (And well, acknowledging flaws might be bad publicity? That feels like hypocritical thinking, but the whole “my book is not that good/that important/I hate going on about me” kind of frame of mind is what makes me so rubbish at everything marketing-related, so ;P)

    • Ah! I totally missed this comment. I’m sorry darlin!

      Agreed. It’s hard not to have hurt feelings in the way, but most of the concrit could be useful. As writers we have to take everything with a grain of salt, though, I feel because there are good suggestions out there but sometimes these suggestions from other people can be like conjecture. I think taking concrit can be very contradictory, but as an author we have to know when to be silent when it comes to our works. Not everyone is going to like everything we do! That’s the lessons we have to take from posting any of our work publicly at all.
      Pick your battles is always my motto. Usually engaging negative reviewers is not being cognoscente of how that will affect your image in the consequences.

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