bad book review

Oh no, my book received bad reviews!!!

Well, it was bound to happen. Somebody (more than one, actually) didn’t like my book…

When somebody gives you a bad review (and after you’re done crying), might I suggest that you evaluate that review against the type of book that you have written. I write this to encourage authors, because I may have made the mistake of placing my book into a reading group that it didn’t belong.

Like so many new authors, I have no clue what I’m doing when it comes to publicity. That written, and thinking it good to get my work out to as many people as possible, I posted my book into a variety of reading groups, even giving some away to a variety of readers. To make a long story short, my book is a solid horror story. I wasn’t sure about that when I wrote it, thinking that it might be a mix or blend of supernatural, thriller, action-adventure and horror, but the audience has spoken and it is a horror story. It does contain other elements – action, supernatural, thriller, drama, etc., but it is a horror story first and foremost. I learned this by receiving the best reviews from those who enjoy horror.

A quick tip for authors is to avoid giving books to those who classify themselves as “readers who enjoy everything.” As I have come to discover, this is probably not true or else these reviewers would have enjoyed my book. Now, the skeptic might suggest that a reader can enjoy everything that is well written, but when a review states that things are “too violent” or “too gory”, well, that isn’t about the writing, that is about subject matter, and if a reader enjoys “everything” they should also enjoy violent and gory subject matter.

These observations aren’t written to mock reviewers, or to defend my work, but rather to encourage writers that not all bad reviews are bad, and that time should be taken to learn from ALL reviews. You can learn something from bad reviews. Point is, test the waters without drowning. Find a body of water that you can swim in and then write for those swimmers. I wish you the best, thanks for reading.

s.j. romero

s.j. romero is the author of H narratives: Divulgence, the mind-altering epic introduction to an afterlife never imagined, a journey like no other and a disturbing truth—death is not what we thought.