RJ Scott Blog Hop: Bad Reviews?

ETA: Ooops, I posted two days too early. I am working this weekend, so forgive the mistake.

For R.J. Scott’s Blog Hop here.

As an author, I admit bad reviews are very hard to deal with. Yes, we all would like to get that 5-star review on Amazon, have everyone love our book, get a movie deal, date Rob Pattinson….

But 5-star reviews don’t happen every single time you publish, even Stephen King and Anne Rice get bad reviews. So, here are a few tips from a ‘professional’ reviewer (I’ve been doing it for nearly two years now on various book sites) who is also a new author on how to deal with those pesky reviews!


  • Ignore them. Yes, easier said than done, but the way to be the most professional author is to to just ignore them. This means not flaming the reviewer in public. (However, bitching to your friends in private is allowed. *g*)
  • Takes notes! Really. If a reviewer gives you an in-depth analysis of your book that is worth its weight in gold in my estimation. (“That sucked!” is not an in-depth analysis). Example: One of the worst reviews I got on GoodReads gave me insight on what not to write next time. I have thanked that reviewer multiple times. She caught mistakes my co-author and editors did not.
  • Stay off of GoodReads. That is a sure fire way to not see any ‘bad’ reviews. Yes, check out your friends’ books, but generally I avoid my books’ pages completely. (Although the first time I got published, I readily admit I cried over the first couple of negative reviews. But now I stay off that page completely.) Why? Concentrate on your current writing not your past projects.
  • Stay out of flame wars if friends get bad reviews. This should be self-explanatory. It never looks good for a new author to jump into a kerfluffle and attack other people. Never. Trust me, you don’t want to be on an ‘authors behaving badly’ shelf on GoodReads.
  • You are not your bad review!! Just because someone did not like the book you wrote doesn’t mean they dislike you. Perhaps your writing style did not suit them or perhaps they really did not enjoy the genre you write in. There are various reasons why a reader/reviewer doesn’t connect with a book and none of that is personal.
  • In the end, remember this mantra: Reviews are for readers, not authors and you will be fine!

    13 thoughts on “RJ Scott Blog Hop: Bad Reviews?

    1. barbara elsborg

      It is good advice not to read your reviews on GR but easier said than done, particularly in the early days of writing when you crave feedback like chocolate! If I do check mine out, and I see something that upsets me, I go and read one that I know will cheer me up. When I see people rave about books I’ve disliked, it’s a reminder that we all like different things and the world is a more interesting place for it.
      I agree that getting involved in those flame wars is not wise!!

    2. sionedkla

      I am sure that reading a review from someone who did not enjoy your work is hard to swallow. Your works are a bit like having children ( I would guess). You can complain about them but to hear others do the same is heart wrenching.


    3. Nancy S

      I am a reader and I pay very little attention to reviewers personal opinions. I will read a synopsis and decide for myself if I want to give it a go.

    4. rawiyaerotica

      Great avdice about bad reviews. I’ve gotten some very constructive ones in these first 2 years. Its fabulous. I’ve enjoyed them regardless of if the reviewer liked or didn’t like the book


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