It’s this: “Don’t read the reviews.”
I say “soon” because I’ve already cheated. COME AWAY WITH ME has some reviews, and to date I’ve read each one. So far, and for the most part, the reviews have been amazing and positive and I’ve truly loved reading them. Yes, I have received the (dreaded) 1* already … and I survived. There was no fuss, or meltdown, or defensive replies to the review, and I slept just fine that night. It’s not that I’m immune to the sting of negative feedback (I’m not), I just have my Big Girl Panties mug always at the ready.
Also, this: Not every book is going to be liked by every reader.
MY book won’t be liked by every reader.
After launch, I plan to let my husband, or my mother (though I will have to be sure SHE doesn’t engage with low-star reviewers), or my agent read the reviews … as I said, it’s the plan. And I hope to stick to it. Because these reviews are not for me, they are for other readers. I get it. I’m a reader too, and I give out stars as well, and not all of them are 5s.
So the next time you’re itching to check your reviews, here are a few other things you can do instead:
Spread the love. Go write a review on the page of an author whose book you loved. We all know how amazing it is to get a great review, so why not spread the joy?
Read this, and keep it handy: Five Ways To Respond To A Negative Review: A Helpful Guide! (by Chuck Wendig)
Remember your job is to write the books, not read the reviews. So get to work (she tells herself).
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