I’m changing the subject today because of two reviews I received recently on Amazon. Like all writers, I’ve had to learn not to take feedback--whether positive or negative-- personally. When the feedback is from an editor, I accept it and work with it, simply and professionally making the requested changes.
On Amazon.com, feedback from readers as well as professional reviewers is posted along with the book information. This feedback can make the difference between a sale and a click to another page. A couple of weeks ago I received the following review from someone unknown to me, on Pandora’s Genes:
Meh...Interesting plot, lacks skillful writing, and too abrupt of an ending
My title pretty much sums up the book. I really liked the story. The beginning of the book was actually pretty good and I got drawn into it fairly quickly. Once halfway through, I felt like I was being rushed through the plot by the author, wanting to make sure she explained what was going on so we didn't get lost.... Towards the end of the book, it seemed to get even more rushed and lacked any kind of artistic writing skill. It gave the facts, went through the time line and POOF! The End. I will say the plot was really interesting. It could be made into a decent film if anyone ever decided to do so and in this case might be one of the rare movies that's actually better than the book.
This reader gave me three stars, and had some positive things to say, but all I could see was the phrase “lacked any kind of artistic writing skill.” How dare she? I thought. What does she know about skillful writing? She’s probably never written anything more complicated than a grocery list. I have to admit that this review stung. But, as with all feedback, I shoved it into a corner in the back of my mind and returned to working on the third Pandora’s book.She is, after all, just one reader, and most of the other reviews are overwhelmingly positive.
Yesterday, I received this four-star review from someone unknown to me, on The Ptorrigan Lode.:
A nice read
This was definitely a short one..What I found amazing is the author was able to set up a world, several well defined characters, and introduce a well devised conflict in such a short period of time. I found the protagonist self-absorbed (as he should be based on his circumstances) and related well with the course of action that he chose. If the author chooses to expand on the ground work that this story laid, I would purchase it.
Ah, what a difference! This reader is obviously a man of great literary acumen. He GETS what I’m trying to do. I wonder if he’d like to be my Faceboook friend? I will eventually shove this review into that corner in the back of my mind, with all the others, but for now... I’m basking in it.