Reading is one of my most favorite pastimes. I love books from almost all genres, and I find that I can't write as much (or as well) when I'm not reading books on a regular basis. In recent years, as I learned more and more about how important reviews are from an author's perspective, I've been making it my policy to review everything I read ... unless I choose NOT to review a book out of respect for an author I like personally but whose book didn't really hit the spot for me.
Why would I do that?
I do it because along with my personal policy of reviewing almost everything I read, I also have a policy of only writing HONEST reviews. I won't tell you that I like a book just because someone wants me too, and I won't tell you I didn't like it just because I don't like the author (however, there are authors that I so dislike as people that I have no interest in their books. See? Honesty.). I want you all to know that whether I'm talking to you about books I've read, songs I've heard, movies I've watched, or products that I've used, I'm talking from the heart, and I mean everything that I say.
To that end, I thought I'd let you in on a little secret. Many of you know that I review books here on my blog from time to time, but in an effort to keep our interactions personal and not turn this blog into a running stream of book commercials, there are a lot of reviews that I won't post here. Often, I'll just review on Amazon and call it a day. Either way, I've written up a policy that I'll be using as I write reviews, to help me get a more solid handle on what I'm feeling as I read.
Do you review books and products? I hope you do; I hope you know how important your feedback is, especially to authors like me. So let me share something with you; let me tell you ...
So many people have books that inspire them, books that heal the scars on their hearts, books that push them on when they want to quit, books that help them let go of burdens they've been carrying. We get caught up in the hot cover models, the steamy sex scenes, the moving dialogue. We love our favorite characters so much sometimes that they become real to us. We wonder what our favorite characters would do, would say, would feel.
Sometimes, those characters become so real that they even overshadow the minds that created them. But then we need a new read, a new fix for that emotional drug we call "a book." That's when we remember the mind, the writer. The author. We remember their names, and we type those names into the search bars of our favorite book markets, hoping they have something more to offer us. Sometimes we forget how important we are to those authors, how much they love us and need us and want to hear from us. We love their work; we love their characters, their stories. But sometimes, we forget to love them back. Or maybe we just don't know how ...
Well, I can help with that. Here are three easy ways to show the authors you love that they matter.
Reviews, again. They keep popping up, huh? But it's because they matter. Reviews are one of the best way for an author's work to be discovered by new readers, and they help to tell an author what is most (and least) loved about their work. For you (and me, and any reader), it just takes a few minutes, a few words. But for the author, those words are the lifeblood of a career, and they mean so much.
I know, no pressure, right?
Seriously though, as important as a review is, it's not as complicated as some people think. It's not a book report like you used to hate writing in school. It's not a summary, or a sales pitch, or any of that. It's just your opinion. Even still, writing a review can be a little intimidating, right?
Well ... I can help with that, too.
And now, I'd like to thank you for reading this post, and I'd like to leave you with a promise. If you review any of my books, please send the permalink for your review to firstname.lastname@example.org. Make sure to include your name and mailing address in the email, and I'll send you a signed bookmark to thank you for your time.
Happy reading ... And I hope you have a very merry Christmas week.