This is MY OPINION only- I do not speak for the masses, but I can't keep my mouth shut about things that don't sit right with me, or I feel need to be addressed. With that being said, here goes...
Since EVERYONE and their freaking dog can self publish a book these days, there seems to be a few common courtesy's that people are forgetting once they actually do.
The minute you hit publish on the book that you've written, you need to remember...
YOU are now a BUSINESS.
YOU are your BRAND.
YOU are your IDENTITY.
I don't care if you still work for someone else and write at night, write on the weekends, or don't consider yourself a writer at all.
Did you hit publish?
Is your book for sale?
Can people buy it?
DO YOU WANT PEOPLE TO READ IT AND LIKE IT?
Then you're a business.
YOU ARE YOUR BUSINESS, YOUR BRAND, YOUR ENTITY, YOUR IDENTITY, ETC.
So you need to behave in a "professional" manner, especially when it's really fucking hard to do so. (the professional jennster says fuck a lot)
People WILL write crappy reviews about your book. And it will hurt, it will sting, it will make you angry, crush your ego a little, etc. There's really no way around that. But through all your personal, egotistical knee-jerk responses (because that's what it is- your ego is offended), you have to take a step back.
You need to be able to look at reviews objectively. Sometimes, the harshest critics have the best advice. I've said it hundreds of times that I got my ass handed to me when I released my debut novel, In Dreams. I cried. I crumbled. I felt HORRIBLE on the inside. And at the time, I couldn't see exactly what was "so wrong" with it. But as I grew as a writer and as I differentiated between people's tastes in books versus their constructive criticism, I found that some reviews really had a lot to tell me. And it's the things they said that helped me address issues I never realized I had in the first place. Those critical reviews helped me grow.
IN ORDER TO BE SUCCESSFUL, YOU MUST BE WILLING TO BE UNCOMFORTABLE.
It doesn't serve you well as an author to personally attack reviewers. It doesn't serve you well to sick your "minions" on someone who posted mean things about your book. Keep in mind, these people are not posting mean things about YOU, the writer (Unless they are. I've had people say i'm an idiot. I write like a 12 year old. I must think my readers are brainless, etc. Which fuck yeah, that shit pisses me off cause it's offensive and how dare someone insult my readers and act like they are stupid, or act like I would EVER consider them to be stupid...) But most reviewers are talking about your book- which you have to keep in mind that while it's personal to you- it is NOT personal to them. They are merely expressing an opinion about your words, the way you've written them, your characters, your plot, your story.
I know that your brain knows that it's impossible to please everyone. But our ego's and hearts hurt when we read the reviews that rip our stories apart. The only way to get thicker skin is to go through the pain. It's hard to see the validity in things sometimes when our hearts are too busy breaking to be reasonable.
Which sort of brings me to another topic that is driving me up the freaking wall lately.
It does not behoove ANY debut author to have a group of people blowing smoke up their ass about their debut novel. It does a disservice to you as a writer- because it gives you a false sense of your writing skill and then when someone DOES say they didn't like your book, your immediate gut reaction is to think that person's the one with the problem.
Having less than honest reviewers and reviews on your book sucks for you- and sucks for other potential readers. People will start to question the validity of reviews entirely (if they haven't already) if this trend continues. Potential future readers will stop trusting the reviews they read on Amazon because they won't know if they came from a valid place, or not.
And having your debut novel soar up the Amazon Top 100 charts when it possibly shouldn't be there also gives you a false sense of entitlement. Unless your debut novel is something in the likes of Slammed, or The Sea of Tranquility- most likely you still have stuff to learn and reaching the Top 100 should be a legitimate goal that you work and strive for.
I am not trying to be mean. Please, please, please know that I am not trying to be mean to you. I love you. I'm simply trying to point out the fact that if you think you struck gold with your first book - then most likely you won't take the necessary steps to grow. You won't work as hard to improve yourself because you won't REALISTICALLY know what you need to improve. When you surround yourself with people who are less than honest because they want to help you succeed- there's a fine line there. We all want to be successful writers. We all to be best sellers. But the truth is that most of us don't get there overnight... and certainly not with our debut novels.
I have more to say, but honestly... i've just completely forgotten the rest. HA.