Reviews are Important:
An author spends an inordinate amount of time writing, editing, and proofreading his or her manuscript in order to deliver a polished product to the reader. It doesn’t happen in the same amount of time it takes to finish reading the same novel. Sadly, all of this effort will amount to very little if prospective readers do not discover the published book.
This is where book reviews come to the fore. In our modern world, everything revolves around word-of-mouth referrals, and reputation. While self-publishing has facilitated the process for writers, it has also increased the challenge. Book reviews are the last hurdle authors must surmount on their road to success. By success, I don’t just mean earning millions a year; it’s about avoiding electronic bookstores deliberately hiding good books with poor rankings, even if it’s exactly what the buyer seeks.
Some people mistakenly assume that authors only chase book reviews to boost their fragile egos, but for many of us, this can’t be further from the truth. Online book sales are based on the most unfair of algorithms.
Largely, these systems only take sales and the number of reviews into account when deciding whether or not to show a book to the potential buyer. Collectively, these elements are called the ‘ranking’.
To get sales, you need book reviews to boost the ranking; to get a higher ranking, you need more reviews to encourage sales, and so perpetuates an endless cycle.
It’s great once you ‘make it’, but the reality is that 90% of royalties are collected by 10% of published authors. This leaves the remaining 10% of the earnings — and ranking — spread amongst 90% of the independent authors.
This is the reality, and here is how you can help. You yield an enormous power, but will you use it? With a quick one-line review, you can literally make — or break — an author. Before you leave unfair criticism for a product, think about what you are doing. It can affect an entire family. Similarly, review the books you love, so that your favourite author continues penning novels for you to enjoy. If you do not want an author to give up, let them know with a favourable review.
As I already love what I do, and do what I love, I have no need of any ego stroking, although I am grateful for any appreciation given. All I ask is for five minutes of your time in reviewing a book.
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