Nobody likes getting a bad review. We would prefer it if everyone agreed that our books were outstanding. As a writer you are going to get bad reviews. Don’t take it personally. You can’t please everyone. Then again, do you really want to?
Here are a few tips on how to deal with them.
Use Any Criticism to Improve
This is harder to do when you are first starting out and everything feels like a punch to your gut. Focus on a bad review as nothing but a new piece of feedback, helping you to develop and improve. Don’t try to rewrite it to overcome any bad review. If that feedback is echoed from multiple readers, consider changing the content.
Remember: sorting the helpful benefits from a bad review gets easier.
Not all Reviews are Created Equal
Some bad reviews offer honest and insightful comments about your book, judging it on its own merits and comparing it to alternative products in the market. These are good reviews, even if they don’t happen to like your book.
You will get both kinds of reviews, but your readers are just like you: they’ll be able to decipher which category each review falls into and react accordingly. In the same way, don’t take all bad reviews to heart. Some carry useful feedback and others are best left ignored.
Expand Your Pool of Proofreaders
It might be good to have more people checking for any grammatical errors or plot problemss are caught early. before your book gets into the hands of your readers. Fewer issues with your book mean fewer bad reviews.
Separate Yourself From Your Writing
Rarely does a reviewer mean something personal when they say they didn’t like your book – they’re expressing their opinion of the writing, nothing more. And just because somebody doesn’t like your book doesn’t mean that they wouldn’t like one of your other books, or that they don’t like you, or that your writing isn’t good.
It still stings, but try to remember that even though your book is a result of your passion, beliefs and imagination, it is not you.
There is a rule in publishing: do not respond to reviews. Leave them alone or just ignore reviews completely. Monitor your reviews. If all reviews are coming in at one or two stars, you’re going to need to take a look at what went wrong. But if the odd bad review comes in, don’t worry about it. Don’t even look at it. Let it go and focus on what you can do with writing an even better follow-up.
Be Grateful for Them
A few negative reviews here and there can actually lend some credibility to your book page. People can get suspicious when a book has dozens of 5-star reviews, as if they’re all from your friends and family. A few negative reviews sprinkled into the mix makes them all look more authentic.