Why Amazon Book Reviews are so important to authors

As a budding novelist you sit for hours at your pc creating your story.

Your find yourself getting emotionally involved with all your characters, so much so that you can play out the whole story in your mind, but to get it across in words is a different matter. You laugh to yourself at the funny situations that you have created and you cry at the sad ones.

Anyone looking over your shoulder would  sometimes probably wonder what planet your were on and after all, you are only sat in from of a screen. Then you read back and wonder it you have in the slightest way portrayed your emotions through to the reader, even just one person.

Finally your novel is published, but in the meanwhile you have read some fantastically crafted books, which flow with descriptions of wonderful landscapes and in-depth characters. You know you will never be that style of writer, but then again you have also read more light-hearted  novels that you have similarly enjoyed. So just maybe someone will enjoy your creation.

A few close friends would probable give you some biased feedback, so you do take that with a pinch of salt and await your first real review. Mine happened today and I have to admit that it brought a lump to my throat, as one of my first readers really seemed to enjoy the book as much as I enjoyed writing it.

So a final plea to readers of any novels, please give some feedback to the author. Most of us are filled with self doubt, but a little encouragement goes a very long way.

If you do review any book, please make sure there are no plot spoilers in your review.

Many thanks to Lorna for this review, which I will probably frame, how sad am I. LOL

This review is from: Vantastic France (Kindle Edition)

I was happy to spend a few euros to upload this book to my kindle as I saw it as a novelty but didn’t have high hopes of a literary masterpiece – and a lot of those are free for kindle anyway! I live in France and expected a very light superficial read and was planning to read it a little at a time whilst reading Nicholas Nickleby.

Well, I have to say I was in for a surprise. It wasn’t long before I was so absorbed in Vantastic France that Dickens had to wait until I’d finished it. There are a lot of light hearted fun moments in the book but it is also a very honest and real narrative about what living in France is really like for English ex pats (of which I am one, in Brittany, where the story is set) and for the Breton people who have to put up with us!

Vantastic France, is, however, much more than the above. It is also a very moving story properly constructed, which deals with issues such as loyalty, snobbery, family secrets and difficulties in second-time-round relationships and step parenting.
Go Steve go and right that sequel! Also please think about releasing Vantastic France in paperback as I would buy it as a gift for friends and family who don’t have an eBook reader. This is not just a book for ex pats living in France, it is a heart warming story about real people that leaves the reader wanting more.

About Steve Bichard

I run French Classified and Property
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5 Responses to Why Amazon Book Reviews are so important to authors

  1. Lichen Craig says:

    Steve, I am so happy to know I’m not the only loon who sits at the computer and cries and giggles over my own stuff as I write. LOL And I can very much relate to the unbridled joy of that first 5 star review at Amazon: “Maybe I really CAN write!”.

    I am getting such a bang out of your enormous success os early in the game. It isn’t in me to write something simple and enjoyable, unfortunately. My first novel is dark and thought-provoking, and sales will come slowly – but that is the game I chose to play. I think authors like yourself run circles around my kind and laugh all the way to the bank, and more power to you! You have written the kind of book people love to read.

    I was married for 18 years to a Frenchie, spent a lot of time in Limousin. Had the joy of visiting Bretagne once. I am off to buy your book right now. Continued success! – Lichen Craig

  2. HI Lichen
    Thank you ever so much for your comments.
    I have read the reviews of your book and it seems you are the 5 star writer. I think that someone mention gay-lit or something like that, some people might think that the book is not for them unless they read all the great reviews. Men especially might think people would think they had gay tendencies if they started to read it, They could also maybe have problems dealing with such a story line. Luckily I am not so narrow minded as that, so I will be downloading it. But you could also have created your own niche in the market, which in time will pay off. My book could be here today gone tomorrow as there are so many similar books written about people moving to France, which is why I tried to have a slightly different slant.

    The fact that I made a friend of mine who is a bit of a macho man shed a tear when he read my book, made me think that I had managed to add a little emotion into my writing. Which yours seems to have in bucket loads. I will post a review once I have read your novel.

    • Lichen Craig says:

      Steve, thanks so much for your kind words, and I’m thrilled you want to read my novel. It is indeed dark. I have had difficulty finding a niche for it – there is a lot of “M/M romance” out there but it is light and fluffy like a Harlequin romance for men. LOL Indie publishing really worked well for me, because I’m not sure a trad. publisher would have chanced it regardless of the quality of writing. It makes me wonder how many good stories are never told because they can’t fit a neat little niche. One more reason why I am so excited to see where indie publishing goes in the next few years.

      Don’t sell yourself short. Your book will be around for a long time, and you have a lot to be proud of! Can’t wait to hear your thoughts on Gentlemen’s Game. 🙂

  3. Wade Venden says:

    I enjoyed reading your thoughts and agree wholeheartedly. So far for me, no reviews yet – just recently published on Smashwords, now working on Amazon… certainly feeling trepidation about getting skinned alive by the first ruthless reviews, but compared to none at all…. well, that’s like not even existing. Anything is better than that, and as they say, you have to develope tough skin in this business. Right now mine’s about as tough as the skin on pudding ; ) Keep up the good work!

  4. Hi Wade
    it has been over a year from when my book was published and I have received a number of reviews, some good, some very bad. The bad ones were mainly from people who downloaded it for free, one even wanted to give me a minus star!

    Luckily my book still sells every day and it has not really effected sales, as there was a balance from the people that enjoyed it and I can now sit back and laugh at the low star reviews, although I was really gutted at the time. I did have a re-edit as some reviewers pointed out mistakes and one low star reviewer even told me where they were and then upped her stars, so it is not all negative.

    Not every reader will get the gist of our writing styles, mine is a tongue in cheek look at ex-pats in France, I think some took offence, but I wanted to take a bit of the gloss off life in France, while keeping it as real as possible yet still trying to create a story line. I was also slatted for making my characters to stereotypical, but that’s what it was all about, stereotypical ex-pats.

    If new authors can read between the lines of some poor reviews and not take them too personally, they might learn to be a better author. However, in saying that I still think we have to stick to our own unique styles and the good reviews help you realise that you do have an audience for your work.

    Good luck with your novel Wade, I look forward to reading some of your future reviews, If you read the reviews for ’50 shades of grey’ they are more entertaining than the book.

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