I’m absolutely delighted to be welcoming today’s guest back to the blog. I’m a huge fan of Cindy Spencer Pape and can’t talk her up enough! She’s visiting us today as part of her blog tour in celebration of the fourth book in her Gaslight Chronicles series from Carina Press. She’s stopped by today to talk about reviews and how she feels about them. Enjoy!
The Dreaded Review
I have to admit, after 48 or so publications, reviews still make me nervous. They’re a dicey thing, after all. Authors love them and dread them. A few even have the backbone to utterly ignore them, but not most of us. I’ll let you in on a little secret here. A lot of authors are pretty insecure about their work. A bad review can send us scurrying back into our cave, wondering if we should ever write again. A good one has us dancing on air. Most of us find them more than a little scary.
Can a good review help a book sell? Undoubtedly. Can a poor review keep a book from selling? Maybe. Certainly a bunch of bad reviews will make a reader think twice about spending her hard-earned dollars. So reviews can be important. They’re not just there to stroke or crush our fragile egos. Ultimately, they are not the be-all and end-all of a writer’s existence, but they do have an impact.
One of the first things an aspiring author is told is to develop a thick skin. This is not a business for the faint of heart. We all face rejections from editors and agents. We’ll all, sooner or later, get bad reviews. It’s all part of the business of writing. Creative people, though, tend to be very emotional sorts. We put a lot of our own emotions into the product—especially if you’re writing the kind of novels that are about emotions, such as romance. That makes it awfully hard when someone tells you it stinks. Even if they say so in a kind, professional manner.
So what can we do? We all know the answers. We can learn from our mistakes. If one reviewer dislikes a book, it may just be a matter of taste. If two or more say the same thing, it’s a good indication that there may be a problem. It lets us know what we can work on to do better with the next book. Mostly, though, we have to smile, thank the reviewer for taking the time and effort to read our books, and deal with it. Yeah—it hurts. The difference between a professional and an amateur is the ability to cope with the hurt and get over it.
And sometimes we have to write blogs. Even if we’re much more comfortable penning fiction.
Thanks for visiting us, Cindy!
More about MOONLIGHT & MECHANICALS:
Engineer Winifred “Wink” Hadrian has been in love with Inspector Liam McCullough for years, but is beginning to lose hope when he swears to be a lifelong bachelor. Faced with a proposal from a Knight of the Round Table and one of her closest friends, Wink reluctantly agrees to consider him instead.
Because of his dark werewolf past, Liam tries to keep his distance, but can’t say no when Wink asks him to help find her friend’s missing son. They soon discover that London’s poorest are disappearing at an alarming rate, after encounters with mysterious “mechanical” men. Even more alarming is the connection the missing people may have with a conspiracy against the Queen.
Fighting against time—and their escalating feelings for each other—Wink and Liam must work together to find the missing people and save the monarchy before it’s too late…