I was in the middle of writing a blog post about book reviews, and what they mean to the indie author, when a fellow author mentioned something regarding this very subject. Apparently, I'm not the only person / author who's feeling the burn. I want to focus on the positive reasons authors NEED reviews on their books.
Here's my list of the top five ways reviews can assist the courageous indie authors of the world.
1. Book reviews are a staple food in a healthy author diet. It doesn't matter how beautiful our cover is or how fantastic our book reads, or how many people read it. If we don't have an ample amount of reviews, we're done. Kaput. As in our books will die a slow, painful death. (IMO) And, by death I mean, they will sit there on sales sites going nowhere, or start off in an Indie bookstore window display, then, end up on the $2 sales table in the back of the store. Reviews are our bread and butter. Without them, we will starve. If you love an author, show them, and review. :)
2.) Indie authors are many times a company of one. They not only create the content, but most do their own formatting, accounting, managing, marketing, selling, tracking, more creating, more formatting... okay, you get the picture. Reviews are (hands down in my opinion) an author's #1 marketing tool!
3.) Reviews aid in promoting the next book. If an author has fabulous reviews on say, her first book, readers are more apt to go for the next one and so on.
4.) Book reviews propel our books upwards and onwards. This one is fairly self-explanatory, but reviews help us authors by putting our books in front of future readers. A well-reviewed book shows up on "suggested" books lists. I myself have purchased many books from these lists, especially on my kindle. Reviews also have the ability to help authors score big promotions on sites such as BookBub, or maybe even hit a best-selling list. I've seen it happen!
5.) Even bad reviews help. Bad reviews have the ability to teach us something. They can bring our attention to certain matters of importance, regardless if we agree or not. It's an opportunity to grow, learn, and move on. Even if our only lesson is to ignore the ugly in the world, we've grown, right? Trust me, my lip still curls at the one I received on my first book. But, bottom line, that rotten review helps me, despite the reviewer's obvious intention. And, speaking of my one bad review, it's actually more than I've received (in book reviews) from some family & friends who claim they love me! Seriously. And last, but not least, you can't get an ugly review on a book, if there's no book to review. So, pat yourself on the back for at least writing and publishing one.
Now, go show those fellow authors some love, or if you're a reader, show an author some xoxo!
Peace, love & purrs ~Cat