Yes, Book Reviewers Can Make History Happen
Before you read You Read But Do You Leave Reviews? that Chris, The Story Reading Ape wrote about why YOU should review books, I want to tell you a story about an indie writer who got her big break with Simon and Schuster because of a book review.
Thousands of us sat in a Towne Hall lecture in Fresno, CA spellbound listening to this indie author tell us her story of being a single mom wondering how she was going to hold her life together after she went through a divorce. She decided she wanted to write.
Can you guess who she is?
You Read But Do You Leave Reviews?
by Chris Graham
I don’t have time.
The author probably spent a heck of a lot more time writing the story than you took to read it, no matter how slow you think you are, so why not take a few minutes to record your feelings about it.
I can’t write long fancy reviews like those I see on book review blogs
You don’t have to, Amazon, for example, only ask you to use a minimum of 25 non-repeating words.
I can’t express myself very well
No-one is asking you to produce a literary masterpiece, start off with things you liked, didn’t like or a mix of both about the book, e.g.,
I liked this book because –
it reminded me of –
it made me think about –
it made me so scared I couldn’t sleep for –
it made me feel homesick for –
it made me more aware about –
and just express your feelings about it
take a look at MY reviews – no lengthy literalistic tomes, no divulging the story endings or highlights (these are called spoilers), you’ll get to them by clicking on the Amazon sites mentioned at the top of the Find Me At list to the right of this article, or even my Goodreads page further down the same list (when at Goodreads, check under my Chris’s Bookshelves and select Books Reviewed).
But all the other reviews are great long one’s. Everybody will laugh at mine
Let them laugh, you won’t be there to see them. Anyway, if they laugh AT you instead of WITH you, it demonstrates what kind of people THEY are.
In any case, an author will not laugh AT you I can assure you. They can see the difference between an honest comment and one that is professionally presented.
Honest reviews tell them an awful lot more and they pay more attention to them.
But what if I really, REALLY HATED the story?
As long as it was the story and not the author, then instead of posting a review comment, you can contact the author directly by email (usually found on their websites) and tell them why you really, REALLY hated the story.
If it was the AUTHOR you didn’t like, my advice is to keep it to yourself and avoid their books in future. Both of you will lead happier lives for it.
I can’t write to an author, they’re all too big and far above my status
You’d be surprised, authors come in all shapes, sizes, and stations in life. The only difference between them and you is that they wrote a story and actually published it.