When they don’t like you

Recently I was on a blogger’s site where another blogger posted, in no uncertain terms, that he did not want this blogger to follow him. There was a lot of outrage in the following comments, but then I saw a comment that I thought was very appropriate. It went like this:

Wow, (blogger). Sorry (this person) came at you like that. You’re correct to say it’s counter-productive for anyone to attack their supporters. It’s not in their best interest. Both on my blog and on Twitter, I have people following me I have disagreements with politically, morally, and spiritually. But anyone willing to lend me an ear or extend me a hand of friendship will receive mutual respect. There are people I interact with I struggle to understand on a host of levels, but does that close me off from them? Heck no. Every once in a while, someone with an opposing or different viewpoint shares something with me that impacts me a great deal.

This was by News Burp (used with permission =)).

The blogger who was “attacked” responded by saying that he liked discussion and even a good argument but that he brushed off hostility. He chose instead to focus on improving his art with the hope that next time the reader’s response would be different.

In my last blog on “stars” I mentioned the sensitivity of some authors towards reviewers who give them ratings of less than five stars. We may disagree with our reviewers, but, before we criticize them, let’s remember that they are also our readers, our audience. We may not understand why they respond to our writing as they do, but let’s consider that their experience of our writing is a valid one, maybe even one that merits our careful attention.

Only four stars?

Recently I came across an organization that distributes books to readers on behalf of new authors in return for a review.

I have not yet received any books for review, but today I read on the website that authors have been hurt because some of the reviewers gave them only four stars.

It is a delicate situation for the host of the site who does not want to offend the authors who are giving reviewers free books.

Having the occasional lower review may actually be a good thing. Andy Traub explains why in his article entitled,  Why five star reviews aren’t as powerful as four star reviews on Amazon.

Buyers will look at the overall balance of reviews. If there are only five star reviews then the book has no credibility. It needs 80% five star reviews and the remaining 20% will likely be spread out through one through four star reviews.

Readers want objective reviews. As authors we need to brace ourselves and accept that not everyone will like our books equally well.