25 April 2010

Reader Comments

This week I got the first reader comments on my book. Happily, they were positive and totally made my day. No, they made my week.

As a new author, it's a scary enterprise to put your first book out there. You've done everything you can and now you just have to hope for the best. If you're a reader and you've just read a book that you really, really like, tell the author! While I can't speak for all authors, I can say that for many of us, it does make a difference. You can comment on their website, you can write a brief review on Amazon, or you can go to the publisher's website and say something positive.

Especially for those of us publishing electronically, web "buzz" really matters. It helps with sales and it tells us, as writers, what you want to see more of as readers.

Plus, comments give authors an emotional and psychological pat on the back that we often desperately need. Because writing is a solo enterprise, it's easy for self-doubt to creep in. Is this story really any good? Maybe everything I've written today should be scrapped. Who's going to want to read this?

Positive comments may come at exactly the right time to help an author get over a tough plot problem. Or give her the enthusiasm to get back to a manuscript that's been languishing.

Bottom line: Comments matter. Really, really matter. Don't think that authors are so important/popular/busy/high-and-mighty that your email or brief review is irrelevant or a waste of time. Your thoughts and opinions matter. And they just might be the right words at the right time to make a big difference.

1 comment:

  1. Positive comments ALWAYS mean a lot to the author. I'm not sure they particularly help sales, however. I suspect readers have a completely different selection process.

    But for encouragement and awesome highs, the best thing in the world is a positive comment about your book.