I got a bad review. Or rather my book did.
Everyone gets bad reviews. I know that.
Weeeeelll…my head knows it. My heart has trouble remembering. It’s a pretty easy thing to forget when you get that nasty review.
Dealing with a bad review isn’t easy. Though everyone has their own way, I thought I’d share what has worked for me.
1. Writing about it. It might sound ironic but writing about painful stuff helps me. I either journal about it or I write it into a blog post :-). Writing is cathartic and helps me get it out.
2. Sending out positive energy. I find that if I send it out, it comes back to me. So, when I need support, I try to send it out. When I need a kind shoulder, I try to be kind to someone around me. If nothing else, at least I feel better about myself.
3. Working out. We have this punching man downstairs and these great boxing gloves. I go down there and punch that guy in the face until all that anger and frustration is gone. Or I go to the elliptical and run or I head to the gym. Anger is a great motivator. I can get amazing work outs thanks to those nasty reviews.
4. Sharing with other authors. I know there are trolls online but I have found amazingly supportive people in the web. I can go to them and share my misery. Odds are, they’ve had a bad review and can identify with me. If not, they’re Nora Roberts…no, wait she’s had bad reviews as well.
5. Kissing my doggies. They don’t care if I’ve get bad reviews or bad hair, they love me unconditionally and trust me. I can kiss those furry heads and tell them all my troubles and they just listen. No judgement.
6. Working at DayJob. I work with the public. Within five minutes of being at work, I’ll have an impossible demand; within ten, someone will be shouting at me. I’ll come back to my computer glad that at least that review was written and not shouted.
A nice list, with nice items. They hurt no one and are good, mature choices.
What follows is a more immature list. Choices that, so far, I’ve managed to avoid. Please notice the ‘so far’. The next bad review will probably send me over the edge.
* Throw away the computer.
* Send the author of that review a nasty email calling them every name in the book and a few I’ve just invented.
* Start a Voodoo doll.
* Go to Tibet and join a monastery.
* Take up Wicca and conjure up a spell. Or two.
* Give up writing and take up playing the banjo.
Absolutely ridiculous list. Time for some maturity. Let’s have some links.
-Try this link and see what works for other authors from Writer Unboxed.
–This one is from Digital Book World and has great tips.
–One more from The Write Life.
What about you? Have you had a bad review? How did you handle it? What helped? Any other items you’d add to the ‘immature’ list?
How about some cute baby animals? They always make me feel better…
Awww!!! Okay, feeling a little better.
There is no artist anywhere who doesn’t receive bad reviews -except the ones who never put themselves out there. Like me. Sharing your creativity takes nerves of steel and many dog kisses:)
Wow. Your comment is really courageous…and I’d say it ‘puts you out there’. Thank you so much for your supportive comment and courage!
I saw your post and Google. I felt so bad. I got one bad, one star review on Barnes & Noble and it ruined my day. It really ruined my whole week. But as time passed, its hurtfulness also passed. The person didn’t even bother to explain him or herself. I would have to like to know why I deserved their time and words. Time heals all wounds.
Of course I put a typo in and I can’t edit it. I hate when that happens.
Oh…you should see my typos…I do them in Twitter (and they’re gone to the entire net) and on my posts…sigh!
Thanks so much, Susanne! I have no idea why people are nasty. They say hurtful things and I just wonder if they think about the impact it will have on other people. No wonder you felt that impact! Thank you so much for your courage sharing that! It really helps to know I’m not alone.
Okay, you haven’t linked to the review, granted, so it COULD be worse, but go check out the one-star review for BA at Amazon: http://www.amazon.com/The-Benevolence-Archives-Vol-1-ebook/dp/B00K95SBGG
It could be worse. 🙂
Why! Why do people write nasty things like that? It’s not even helpful. Thank you so much for your courage sharing that review. Here’s mine: https://www.goodreads.com/review/show/1007828662?book_show_action=true&page=1
Stalker, basically. She hasn’t read the book, and knows me personally, although we haven’t spoken in well over a year– and, as you can tell, is not a fan. I tried to get Amazon to remove it; no luck.
I can only wonder what sort of anger a person lives with that they decide to hurt someone else permanently online like that–and she’s kept that anger fuelled for an entire year? Yikes. I hope I never become so hurtful.
I did, and it pisses me off weeks later. There’s nothing I can do about it, and the reviewer knows this. It will set you back too. It can’t hurt you long term, unless you let it. I put myself out there, something the reviewer has never done. I’ll bet your situation is no different.
You’re exactly right. There’s no need for hurtful words or nasty comments. Why do that? Thank you so much for your comment. It really helps to know I’m not alone in this.
Eh, don’t let the bother you. Critics are everywhere (even outside the artistic world). I’m not published but I do know what it feels like to have a professor mark up your paper with a red pen. I don’t let it get me down. Instead, I ask my professors to go through my work with me so I can get it right the next time. It’s a learning experience. I know that’s totally different than getting a bad book review. But…I guess I’m trying to say that the best thing to do is to shrug it off and keep going.
Thanks, Desiree! You’re absolutely right. Staying up all night arguing with an invisible reviewer is nuts…ahem. Not that I’ve done that or anything (rolling eyes). But you’re completely right, learn from it and then move on. That’s the right way to deal with it. Thank you so much for your support!!
LOL! No problem 🙂
It’s easy for people to say that bad reviews will always happen, no matter who you are, but it still hurts, doesn’t it?
But still, over the past couple of days you’ve also had some brilliant reviews!
Though I’m thinking starting up playing the banjo might be a great, fun way to take your mind off of it 😀
LOL. Thanks so much for that, Mishka! It made me laugh! And you’re right, I’ve had some amazing reviews. I should focus on the positive!
They clearly have no taste whatsoever. I, on the other hand, have excellent taste and I’m loving the book! I haven’t finished it yet, but the fact I can’t stop thinking about it when I’m supposed to be busy working, tells you something. Keep your chin up. You did an excellent job.
Oh my goodness! What a nice thing to say! Thank you so much! Thank you so, so much!
You’re welcome. I meant it sincerely – I’m loving the book and will leave a review when I’ve finished 🙂
You’re awesome! Thank you so much! I’m so glad you like it! After that review, I was just filled with doubt. Thank you so much for your support!
I know completely how that feels and when I read your post I was genuinely astounded. There I was laughing out loud because of Olivia’s sense of humour and kicking myself for not reading the book sooner and my brain balked at the thought of someone leaving a bad review. It’s a book to be proud of. It really is 🙂
Really? Thanks so much! You’re so kind! I’m so glad you thought it was funny. I hoped it was funny but I wasn’t sure, first book. This reviewer definitely didn’t agree with you. But your comments are helping me put it into perspective. I’m so glad I wrote the post. I wasn’t going to share it, then I thought: heck, I bet everyone’s had a bad review. The support has been unbelievable. Like yours!!
I’m glad 🙂 That’s what the community is here for and we can definitely relate. The humour is one of my favourite things about the book; you have a distinct voice. I also particularly enjoyed the strong characters – you’ve definitely got a fan 🙂
You are so kind. Thank you so very much. It’s almost worth getting that nasty review to meet people like yourself!
I just wanted to let you know that I finished your book this afternoon, and I thoroughly enjoyed it. I can’t wait to read more about the Forest Race 🙂 I’ve left you a review on Amazon.
You’re awesome! Thank you so much!
Reblogged this on Melissa Barker-Simpson and commented:
We’re with you, Taylor. I have an army of Voodoo dolls ready for my bad ones :=)
Aw!! You’re such a sweetie!! Thank you so much!
For someone like me, just being published would be amazing! But I do know that if I ever get there that a bad review will totally slay me. And anger makes for the best workouts! As for your list, the voodoo doll and writing the email (but not sending it) sound like wonderful ideas to get it out of your system!
Thanks so much, Gretchen!!
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Personally, I plan on writing the reviewer into a story and letting the chaos take care of it. 😉 Nah, it happens. I hope to avoid reading reviews in general but know that isn’t realistic.
That’s a great way to look at it, ‘it happens’. I just have to keep that in mind!